m101 build phase 1 complete: it's a tent trailer!

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semlin

curmudgeon
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Mar 27, 2003
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ok, so photos down below. it's ready for moab. It'll get paint when it gets back. Right now I can't believe how well it turned out. Kudos to steve and his guys at ebi cruisers for great work. they built it more or less exactly the way i described it to steve but with some creative falir of their own.

the siderails are 1.25" .125" steel and are plenty beefy enough with little or no flex. I got a set of kwik rail artificial rain gutters for the yakima cross rails (cheapest place is a truck canopy shop) and mounted them so the tent is 2" forward of centre. the rails are 12.5" above the bed which seems like a good height. I can get into the trailer very easily with the tent mounted and was even able to load it with crap for a run to the dump without removing the tent. The side rails also mean I can mount some plywood boards and increase the bed capacity big time. In fact I am going to mount some hooks on the boards and use the canopy on top!

the tent does seem to make the trailer sway side to side a bit even with the bed loaded but with the spare mounted (65 lbs) that went away and it tracks nice, even though it is tilting backwards because my truck is way taller than the trailer. the tire also seems to cut down on bounce. I've never seen my trailer before while towing and was amazed to see how much the side rails in my rear view mirror bounced on bumps when the tent is off and the trailer is unloaded. one nice side effect of the rails is i can actually back the thing up for the first time and actually see how it is tracking.

when I get home I'm going to looking into shackle extensions to get the springs parallel to the ground. As long as I run 33s on the truck I think an SOA would be too much, as well as looking weird on stock rims.

anyway, no shots with the tent open but it works great and passed the kid test. the front and rear trailerjacks allow me to level and steady the tent pretty well. without the rear trailerjack the tent will tilt backwards from level if you overload the tent at the back. I maybe could have set the tent a little further forward to avoid that but with the potential for stuff to get moved around in the bed anyway I thought it was better to get the trailerjack anyway. i am also going to use the hitch point to carry a bike rack.
trailertent2.jpg
trailertent.jpg
trailertent3.jpg
 
i have no garage :(

most of the time it lives in a storage place but this week as I getting ready to go I have to count on the bike lock through the loop and the lack of people with a pintle hitch in my neighbourhood. not much else i can do. i have noticed it attracting a lot more attention since the siderails and tent were mounted with people slowing down to gawk so I am little worried right now.
 
Looks good!

Good find on the Kwik Rails...I'm taking my Thule artificial gutters back to REI. Too damn expensive.
 
i have no garage :(

most of the time it lives in a storage place but this week as I getting ready to go I have to count on the bike lock through the loop and the lack of people with a pintle hitch in my neighbourhood. not much else i can do. i have noticed it attracting a lot more attention since the siderails and tent were mounted with people slowing down to gawk so I am little worried right now.

It looks great Semlin.


Seriously you need to leave it connected to your truck then. It's not safe to leave out on the street in Vancouver. Or put it down beside your house on the grass.

I like the tailgate structure. Did you feel it was needed to keep the tub strong enough? You could put a couple Jerry cans in that space too. But you need to be careful not to load to far aft, or it will really waggle...
 
steve at ebi put the same tailgate in his trailer first and settled on the bumper and diagonal bracing as being necessary. his view was there was too much flex in the bed back there without that stuff. I was skeptical but went along and there was enough rust at the base of the bed that it definitely needed something solid to weld the hinges too.

the result is trail friendly protection but adds some weight and looses a bit of rear clearance. in retrospect i would have insisted steve integrate the hitch receiver into the bumper but the problem then becomes what to do with the draw pin.

I have some cross pieces added in the gaps beside the fender but with the mil-spec lights and the siderail mount you can't fit a jerry can in there. It will hold a propane tank but I am thinking of custom making boxes to fit the space and putting recovery gear and the like in there.
 
tin retrospect i would have insisted steve integrate the hitch receiver into the bumper but the problem then becomes what to do with the draw pin.

I have seen guys put them through the top down. But use a bolt instead.


Now go hide that thing....eh.
 
The way these things hookup...couldn't someone just connect their pintle received to the bike lock to pull it?

I don't know how to secure it any better...just thought that was kinda weird.
 
i have padlocked the safety chains together so they bunch up and block the pintle hole. I had not thought of your idea. it is possible although it would be an incredibly scary way to tow. I think it is more likely they would bring some bolt cutters with them.

hopefully it lasts until saturday!
 
They don't need a pintle hitch, they can just lay it over the ball and go.... tie a rope to it, whatever.

Those trailer tow easy no matter how you attach it...
 
no but maybe a chain could be installed underneath that keeps the brakes locked...

not a deterant but would make it really hard to pull out of there.
 
Put on the parking brake , drill a hole through where the handle and the mount overlap when the parking is on pop a padlock through the hole .
Done
 
Put on the parking brake , drill a hole through where the handle and the mount overlap when the parking is on pop a padlock through the hole .
Done

Its one bolt under the front of the trailer and the parking brake is disabled.

If your conserned about the spring over axle i just did it to my truck with the stock wheels and it sits damn near level with my truck and i think were running the same thing? 2.5 with 33s? the trailer may be a tad higher but when i get my stuff on it and the tent and gear out of the back of my truck ill bet it sits level.

BTW looks great
 
mike, have you got a photo?
 
I dont have any after the lift but ill try and take some this weekend when i get it out of the garage. I have yet to register it or work on it other then the lift.
 
woah. that is a long way up.

i'd like to see that in person mike. we'll have to get a trip going in the next couple of months
 

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