Modified, Mini A-Frame

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Modified, Mini A-Frame

Postby GrantRobertson » Sun Jul 29, 2018 5:36 pm

I'm in the beginning stages of building myself a modified A-Frame trailer. Imagine a standard A-Frame, but cut the top off of the triangle fold-up sides, to make them into trapezoids. But then tilt them back a little bit so the top doesn't have a flat surface for water to pool on. When folded down, the rear will be a bit lower than the front, for the same reason. The whole thing will be below the level of the rear window of my minivan when folded down, so I can see what is behind me. When "assembled" the interior will have about 6.5' of head-room for the entire length and width of the "top" of the trapezoid. This is just about as much room as a traditional A-Frame, but without having the peak stick up 3-4 extra feet, catching the wind and trapping all the heat up there at the top.

I'm sorry, I don't have any pictures of my plans right now. Everything is just pencil sketches on paper, and that doesn't scan well. I looked into making up a full set of plans in some CAD software (used to do CAD for a living) but I decided that I would be spending way too much time messing with the drawings and not building. Besides, with a completely new design like this, there are so many things that I won't be able to figure out till I am actually working on it. The exterior will be 8' long and 5.5' wide. I know this is pretty narrow for an A-Frame, but I want it to be entirely behind my minivan while traveling down the road. Fortunately, I don't need it to be big enough for everything. I am also converting my minivan into a bit of a mini-RV. I already have a cabinet with a desk, and a bed in there. When I am finished, I plan to live in this two-piece rig full time.

Right now, I am welding up the frame. I got an old boat trailer for $80 and am modifying it to hold my camper. The main things that sold me on the trailer are that it was light, and the wheel bearings were in great shape. I highly recommend old boat trailers for camper trailer frames. All you have to do is un-bolt or cut off a few things and they are completely flat on the top. You can usually also adjust where the wheels sit on the trailer, to get just the right balance. Just learn how to check the bearings before you go out shopping for one.

I have lots of experience building all kinds of things. Friends have told me that I should start a YouTube channel, teaching people how to build things with minimal tools. But I got other things to do with my time than play the YouTube game. However, I have never built anything that I planned to pull down the highway at 65 MPH for year after year. So, I am here to get advice on what types of things have worked in the past. What results in a more durable build? What materials hold up against rock damage without costing too much or weighing too much? That kind of thing.

I look forward to learning from all of you. And I hope I can pass on some knowledge/tips of my own.
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Re: Modified, Mini A-Frame

Postby Staryder61 » Thu Aug 02, 2018 6:58 pm

Hi Grant, will be watching for your updates, good luck and keep us posted..
Thanks for stopping by,, David

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