Making more space

Discussion in 'My Favorite Mods, Tips, Tricks (and Blunders!)' started by LeftOne, May 14, 2014.

  1. chucknbob

    chucknbob New Member

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    Personally, I think the dual hitch is your best option. I know it will make it a pain to pop the rear door when it's on, but that seems better than the tongue, IMO.

    my concerns with the tongue lengthening are that it will drastically increase tongue weight. Your van maxes out at 400 lbs. Putting 100 lbs of bikes, plus the weight of the steel, combined with the fact the extra length will push some of the weight already on the trailer onto the tongue, you'll easily go over that.

    Plus this will affect your ability to sell it down the road. Many buyers (myself included) would be scared away by a homemade structural modification, regardless of how well it appears to be done.
     
  2. generok

    generok Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    We've done what you are suggesting, but it was on a utility trailer, not the PUP.

    Our ute had a single beam tongue, which not only torqued when on the jack, but also did not allow for storage on the tongue.

    So, we got some 6' lengths of 1.5 X 3 X 3/16 A500 steel rectangular tube stock and made an A-frame tongue. The trickiest part was making the geometry work to get the overall length we wanted but also fit well into an available hitch. Ultimately it worked out and we got about 2' of storage between the bed and the jack so we could put a plastic tote there, which was the goal. The tongue is very rigid. The increased tongue length also made it slightly easier to back up and tow.

    Something to keep in mind is you're going to need a way to make a few angled cuts in the steel. If you have a radial arm saw, you can put a metal cutting blade in it and grind away. Not elegant, but it will work for the few cuts you need to make.

    Of course if you change the geometry, you change the way the trailer rides and the weight distribution. You could end up pretty tongue heavy.

    But, is it doable... heck yeah it is! You're essentially making a PUP toy hauler rig... like this:
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  3. 94-D2

    94-D2 Happy Campin'

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    This is what I did, and I have more planned. It is not for everyone however, and it is not for every pup. Make sure your frame is strong enough, boxed and reinforced, and you work out the tongue weight. Everything you put on the back will come off of the front leaving it unstable. I corrected mine with anti sway, loading and using the front water tank as a ballast. It is solid as a rock at 75. Keep in mind that I have 2 axles and a longer platform to work with. The shorter the trailer, the more difficult it is to stabilize.


    Good luck..


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    O
     
  4. LeftOne

    LeftOne Mark, Shana, McKinzi, Lake, Tucker, Dog (Yankee)

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    Thank you everyone for your comments and Suggestions! I have not made a decision on this yet. I do look forward to hearing from more of you though.
    I have a couple weekenders planned before the 10 day haul in July. That is when I will need this most.
     
  5. pej

    pej Member

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    When the 5 of us were camping together it was challenging at times to squeeze everything and everyone in. We installed a roof rack on the pup like Jeepmama.
    On shorter trips, say 2 to 7 hours we would take 5 bikes with 3 on the pup and 2 on the TV roof. The bikes and trail enjoyment trumped a bit of fuel economy. Yes, being 6' tall and having some small kids bikes helped. Bikes were better when staying 2 to 4 nights per CG - less work.
    On longer trips, say 600 to 1000 miles we left the bikes home and put the ski box (Thule) on the pup for lawn chairs, pool noodles and other lighter stuff so the TV was less crowded. It made teardown faster when we could just toss stuff in. We found touristy things to do that did not require bikes. We all enjoy hiking too. Yes, we emptied the ski box every time before cranking. Kids had their duties for setup and tear down. Well, a few duties and then go test the playground while Dad puts up the trailer.
    Oh, years ago we tried a hitch and bike rack on the back of the popup. It was a disaster mostly due to the condition of rural highways where the good camping areas are. The trailer bounce was too much for the welding, even after adding extra steel to the bumper.
    It is all about having fun.
     
  6. JNevill325

    JNevill325 New Member

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    I'm planing on the exact same idea. I checked with a welding shop down the road from our HQ. They build heavy haul trailers and modifications to oilfield equipment. According to Jaime it is very doable. He has done it before for a couple of others who added enough room for golf carts / ATV's. Said he added 5 foot front and 3 foot rear to one. Guy used the rear for extra coolers and front for a lawnmower (?). He did caution about changing out the springs and maybe the axle (in the golf cart / ATV scenario). But like you I'm just looking for some room for some bikes and modest amount of gear. Either way, like you planning is "proof in the pudding".
     
  7. 94-D2

    94-D2 Happy Campin'

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    I recommend upgrading to a 5,000 lb axle. Add gussets and 1/4" plate to reinforce hanger points and sleeve the frame. If not boxed, box in critical areas where strees points are located and weld in the extensions by cutting 1" holes on the outer and welding them closed after sleeving.


    I have two B35 dexters with a 2X6 boxed main frame. I sleeved the outer diameter for the rear extension with a 9" stub to work with. I added a 2" X1/4 angle cross member for a total 29" of extension (24 taken by the box, 3 and then some for the bumper and 2" for the beveled rear of the trailer). I added grade 8 stainless bolts for added measure. I plan a receiver hitch for bikes or whatever and a 2' front deck for wood, etc.


    Too much fun.
     

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