Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

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Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby bmr528 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:36 pm

So I have decided to build my own trailer chassis, I am looking hard at the Rondack lodge style shown on Steve Frederick's web site.

I am planning on a 5 by 9 chassis size, The Teardrop trailer I am estimating at 1500# +/- This is the steel I am looking at:

Rectangle Tubing 3 x 1.5 x .120

Square 2.5 x 2.5 x .120

I am leaning towards the 2.5 x 2.5

the .120 is slightly less that 1/8 inch ( Hence the tube style )

opinions?

djl
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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby PJLangevin » Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:48 pm

Here is what I built, all out of 2×2×1/8 tubing. 60" wide 120" long. I think the tubing is a bit much but it was easier on measurements and suspension parts.ImageImageImageImageImage

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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby Ottsville » Mon Jul 23, 2018 5:10 pm

For a 1500lb trailer 2x2x1/8 square tubing is plenty, and possibly even that is overkill.
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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby bmr528 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 6:18 pm

Ottsville wrote:For a 1500lb trailer 2x2x1/8 square tubing is plenty, and possibly even that is overkill.


And Actually My quote by the supplier to me is for 2.5 x 2.5 x 1/8 in size.. That would be OK for the Tongue as well? I will use 3 tubes for the toungue


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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby bdosborn » Mon Jul 23, 2018 6:42 pm

I used 2x3 tubing, I don't think people realize it's lighter than 2x2 but just as strong.

http://tnttt.com//viewtopic.php?t=4918&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=15

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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby Ottsville » Mon Jul 23, 2018 7:33 pm

bdosborn wrote:I used 2x3 tubing, I don't think people realize it's lighter than 2x2 but just as strong.

http://tnttt.com//viewtopic.php?t=4918&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=15

Bruce


2x3 tubing is never lighter than 2x2 tubing of the same thickness. I suspect that's not what you meant for comparison though?
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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby bdosborn » Mon Jul 23, 2018 8:56 pm

2" x 2" x 1/8" tube - Z = 0.51 in3, weight = 3.05 lb/ft
2" x 3" x 1/16" tube - Z = 0.51 in3, weight = 2.04 lb/ft

So exactly the same strength, but one third less weight.



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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby Ottsville » Mon Jul 23, 2018 9:04 pm

Ok, that makes sense. You didn't specify different wall thicknesses originally.

2x3 14ga makes a lot of sense for many tears then.
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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby KTM_Guy » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:11 pm

1/16" is 16 gage. for a beginner or casual welder I think it is harder to weld than 14 ga or 11 ga. It's easy to blow through so you turn the heat down then get poor penetration.

2.5 X 2.5 is kind of and odd size. 2X2X1/8 or 11 gage is still over kill. I am using 2X2X1/8 on my build and if I was doing it again would use some 14 gage for cross members and other places to save some weight.

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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby Ottsville » Tue Jul 24, 2018 6:07 am

The added welding challenges are a good point. 14 or 16 gauge 2x3 should be strong enough for the weight of the trailers we are building. For an off road trailer I would be concerned about the ability of (especially 16 ga) to handle impacts to the tube itself. For most of us that's not an issue.
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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby noseoil » Tue Jul 24, 2018 7:53 am

Don't use 2 1/2" X 2 1/2" X .120" as it's way too heavy. I did a weight yesterday, on the frame I did recently. It uses 2" X 4" X .120 for the deck frame & 2" X 3" X .120" for the tongue. With the 2X6 Southern Yellow Pine decking, tires, axle, tongue box, tools & sides it's tipping the scales at 900# with a 200# tongue weight!

As usual, I made it way too heavy, way too strong & a beast on 15" rims. It's plenty stout to load & tow, but it's overkill in the extreme. Should have gone with thinner wall tubing... Ah well, at least it's nice to know it won't fall apart going down the road...
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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby working on it » Tue Jul 24, 2018 10:37 am

noseoil wrote:...With the 2X6 Southern Yellow Pine decking, tires, axle, tongue box, tools & sides it's tipping the scales at 900# with a 200# tongue weight! ...
  • Is this for a TTT, or utility trailer? Even if I had used the pine for decking on my 4x8 TTT, the weight of that floor would've been 140+ lbs alone (depending on moisture content, perhaps more). No wonder you've reached 900 lbs already; but then again, my TTT with only the floor, wheels/tires/fenders attached was 400 lbs, using 3/4" of plywood for my deck.
  • Still, I wouldn't skimp on the amount of steel in my frame, the 3/4" plywood (on walls/roof) was a bit too heavy, but the frame needed all the strength it could get. IMHO
  • The HF and NT trailers, with mainly angle, not tubular, frames of ??? grade steel, were not sturdy enough for the usage I envisioned for my TTT to endure, so I used my little scrap trailer with a perimeter of tubular steel, as a starting point, and added to it. More is better, where durability is concerned. As I learned from the rapid deterioration/collapse-in-progress of my old "manufactured home" recently, skimping on a foundation, or on a mobile platform (one of our tiny trailers), can lead to total failure.
  • Though my TTT''s all 3/4" plywood superstructure is strongly built/attached to the frame, I wonder how it would've fared if the frame was less robust, when my TTT went completely airborne (over a massive pothole at 75+ mph)? A lesser frame might've flexed, possibly with the upper structure tearing loose from the frame (I'm sure we've all seen these expanded-metal between angle-steel framed landscape trailers flex over road undulations...that's why I didn't buy the NT trailer I was going to start building on, which would've been an easier & quicker build, than by using my old , but strong, scrap trailer.).
  • If you want a lightweight trailer, for towing over moderate-to-excellent condition roads, then lighter construction may be best, but for anticipated mediocre-to-terrible road/trail traverses, then "go big or go home" (with damage).
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Re: Building my own Trailer,, Some specs on steel

Postby bmr528 » Tue Jul 24, 2018 11:05 am

Great advice from all of you..

I have made some changes to my chassis plans

I will use 2 x 2 x.120 for the side rails & tongue

I will use 2 x 1 x 1/8 C Channel for the cross members.

this will shave 79 # off of the trailer weight. 123# instead of 202#

I am happy with that figure

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Tubular Steel

Postby TerryB89 » Sun Oct 27, 2019 3:12 pm

Question, I will be making a rectangle frame on my trailer, going to use 2 X 2 tubular steel, a few questions, when I order the steel do I want cold rolled steel, Hot rolled steel, stainless.... and how thick do I need ( I have no clue about wall thickness) from what I've read on here I want 14 ga or 16 ga opinions??
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Re: Tubular Steel

Postby KTM_Guy » Sun Oct 27, 2019 5:32 pm

TerryB89 wrote:Question, I will be making a rectangle frame on my trailer, going to use 2 X 2 tubular steel, a few questions, when I order the steel do I want cold rolled steel, Hot rolled steel, stainless.... and how thick do I need ( I have no clue about wall thickness) from what I've read on here I want 14 ga or 16 ga opinions??


What are your welding skills? If you don’t know what kind of steel you need, then buy hot rolled. It’s the cheapest, and the other options don’t add any needed properties to a trailer build, for double or more the cost. Hard to say on the gage without knowing more on the build. There are lots of variables. I used 2X2X1/8” or about 10 gage. My next build will be 2X3 16 gage. It’s a little harder to weld thinner metal, but there is a weight savings.

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