Not sure how wide spread this is

Arlyn Aronson

Super Active Member
Jun 11, 2014
2,057
Houghton, MI
98% of frames in the world are made from channel iron. The portion that the hitch is welded to are commonly rectangular tubing. What gives them strength is the dimensions of the rectangle, and its wall thickness. Nothing solid.
 

DiamondGirl

Adventures with KODI in AZ
Jul 2, 2016
1,335
AZ
It’s a SOLID steel constructed chassis called an ReVolution I-Beam. Not hollow or C Channel.

Happy Camping…[put&hy]
 

Arlyn Aronson

Super Active Member
Jun 11, 2014
2,057
Houghton, MI
OK, its hot rolled mild steel homogeneous I beams. Please don't get mad but its not special or high strength for off-road application. Seems most camper manufacturers bids out frames at whatever specifications for the frames they need. In the steel industry these I beams would not be called "solid" or anything special. I'm not saying your camper frame isn't good, but these frames are bid out at whatever the manufacturer likes.
 
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Arlyn Aronson

Super Active Member
Jun 11, 2014
2,057
Houghton, MI
Here is a video of a fellow reinforcing his new camper frame made by Lippet. He claims they commonly failed so he's fixing his trailer now and I agree that's its much easier to repair before it cracks or bends although I'd have made the fish plated slightly differently. He says the I beam web is only 1/8 thick.
 

Patrick w

Active Member
Aug 13, 2021
506
It's not the webbing being too thin. Thin webs are ok as long as the torsional loads don't deflect between the top flange and the bottom flange.

The issue is that the bottom flange is stretching, exceeding it's tensile strength.

The easiest solution is just to get some 1/4" strips and weld it onto the bottom flange. It can also be boxed but realistically the bottom flange must be strengthened.

The other short term choice is to just cut jam in some wood into the channel.

There are definite design choices made. Ground clearance, cost, and even how much tongue weight is a big factor.
 

Patrick w

Active Member
Aug 13, 2021
506
As scary as it sounds, it does not surprise me. Seeing my parents trailer and lack of floor joists and using foam as a floor, manufacturers are taking way too many shortcuts in the name of weight. Even if it comes at the cost of critical support. My parents floor was caving in on their camper and both the dealer and manufacturer was essentially saying not their problem. It’s sad, scary, and down right infuriating that manufacturers are not held accountable for these shortcuts. It’s not just one brand but all of them it seems. They all are trying to brag of how light weight a camper is, but at what cost? What shortcuts did they take?
It's all about the cost. They could build a light weight trailer, but many people won't pay for it. I went out of my way to find one of the older livinlites because the newer ones after Thor took over used plastic floors instead of aluminum! So the companys old "all aluminum no wood" motto became "no wood" . In truth it wasn't all aluminum to begin with (canvas, axle, tire battery, steps, were not aluminum obviously) but still...

Anyways people complained about the high price; basically how expensive it was for basically a tent on wheels compared to a regular pop up.

Trying to keep that price in a sweet spot you'd purchase it at has a lot of penny pinching stuff that backfires later..
 

Arlyn Aronson

Super Active Member
Jun 11, 2014
2,057
Houghton, MI
It's not the webbing being too thin. Thin webs are ok as long as the torsional loads don't deflect between the top flange and the bottom flange.

The issue is that the bottom flange is stretching, exceeding it's tensile strength.

The easiest solution is just to get some 1/4" strips and weld it onto the bottom flange. It can also be boxed but realistically the bottom flange must be strengthened.

The other short term choice is to just cut jam in some wood into the channel.

There are definite design choices made. Ground clearance, cost, and even how much tongue weight is a big factor.
Yes but in the video, that fellow claimed all the breaks have been in the webbing. But yes the flanges are to light. Maybe we could sell enforcement kits for them?? [:D]
 

Patrick w

Active Member
Aug 13, 2021
506
Yes but in the video, that fellow claimed all the breaks have been in the webbing. But yes the flanges are to light. Maybe we could sell enforcement kits for them?? [:D]
In the first vid it's the flanges. In the second it's a c channel with badly designed webbing, basically all forces go into that one spot. Was probably beating up the c channel, so they came up with this slat of iron to try and move the stress, but right to the webbing. There seems to limited space on this design so they are kinda forced to use this block looking part.
For that I'd just sell a two plate setup. One for plating like he did but smaller. Then I'd do an oversized for the outer c channel to box it in. He was also talking about a lot of side to side stress, and that can also cause a lot of stress on the webbing.

For some applications riveting or bolting is better than welding, especially if you don't know what the original frame was made of. Some of the high strength steels do not accept welding heat well and can cause the steel to loose strength.
 




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