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  #1  
Old 10-27-2015, 03:31 PM
Bray D's Avatar
Bray D Bray D is offline
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Trailer mod - side load door

I'm starting with this trailer:

http://www.sure-trac.com/products.php?trailerId=15



And I'd like to install a swing out door forward of the axle so I can side load quads.

The walls are relatively heavy, so the cutout should suffice for the door itself. I can always reinforce it with some square tube around the perimeter of the door if necessary.

The majority of my questions revolve around the hinges and latches. I searched McMaster for some heavy duty hinges, and this is what I came up with:

http://www.mcmaster.com/#strap-hinges/=zjwckb

They're flat mount, which would work well with the flat walls, and appear robust enough.

I'm still up in the air for a latch. I could build an angle iron/flat plate arrangement what simply pins together, or I could do something more fancy with a purchased latch. I'd like to make the door as long as possible, and swing towards the trailer rather than the truck. Doesn't leave much room for a latch at the front of the trailer.

1) Do you guys know of any other hinge/latch arrangements that would work well for this application?

2) Am I doing minimal harm by cutting the side for a door, or should I consider structural reinforcements to the floor of the trailer?

Last edited by Bray D; 10-27-2015 at 05:18 PM.
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  #2  
Old 10-27-2015, 07:09 PM
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350 Vortec 350 Vortec is offline
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as far as I can see the side of this trailer is effectively the chassis so I would imagine you would be doing serious harm to the integrity by cutting through especially forward of the axle
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  #3  
Old 10-27-2015, 09:52 PM
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That's a concern for sure. The trailer I have is the single axle version of the one posted above, but it's essentially the same design.

I'll post up some pictures of what I'm really working with in the morning. There's some channel beneath it, but it doesn't run the full length of the deck.
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Old 10-28-2015, 03:29 AM
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Red face

Pray tell why do you need to load them from the side ??

How do you plan to get them up there??

We really need to see pictures of your trailer.

You could be putting quite a bit of stress on the hitch if you this close to the front.

most equipment trailers are built to load from the rear .

You might need to get into some serious reinforcement to the under side of the trailer

Deck over trailers it is not bad loading pallets from the side.
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Old 10-28-2015, 09:18 AM
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Alrighty, here's some more accurate photos. I took these 20 minutes ago. It's a little single axle guy - rated for 2000lbs.











It doesn't much matter, but this is my buddy's trailer and he was wanting me to add the door. He said he pulls the quad on, lifts the rear and spins it 90* so it sets sideways on the trailer. It fits better that way, allowing him to get more cargo on the rear portion of the trailer. I've never seen it loaded, so I can't speak to how it all works.

Side loading isn't rare, it just may not be feasible with this style of trailer. I stole this from the interwebz.



I'm not opposed to running channel the full length of the deck, but I think it'll turn into more work than he'd like me to do.
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  #6  
Old 10-28-2015, 01:00 PM
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Sure looks like that side panel is structural. <Looks can be deceiving!
What if, you don't cut it completely, leave say 4" remaining and then build the outside ramps to hook on to that flange, Reinforce as necesary and if necessary add a triangular block to the inside allowing the machine to be backed out over that flange?

E
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Old 10-28-2015, 01:19 PM
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That's what I was thinking initially. The deck rests inside the walls, so even if I leave a 4" lip, it'll only extend ~2.5" past the top of the deck planks - absolutely no issue for the vehicles he'll be loading.

I'd like the door to run from the front of the trailer back to the fender. Ideally I could reinforce the deck all the way back to the axle, relieving all of the load from the side wall.

I'll have to crawl under it again tonight to see what it would take to make that happen.

Assuming this is doable from a strength standpoint, are there any thoughts regarding the hinge and latch mechanisms?
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  #8  
Old 10-29-2015, 11:27 AM
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From the under-view I don't see any beams running front-to-rear, so I have to agree with e that the side walls are structural. You could probably run a load bearing beam front-to-rear under the door area like a conventional flat-bed trailer and that would take care of the structure in the area of the door. A 4inch lip is not going to do much unless it is boxed.

Regarding hardware, take a look at the SouthCo catalog. They have all kinds of great latches and hinges: http://www.southco.com/en-us/
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Old 10-29-2015, 12:00 PM
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http://m.ebay.co.uk/itm/1000-lb-Winc...786?nav=SEARCH
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Old 10-29-2015, 12:05 PM
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http://m.ebay.com/itm/Pickup-Truck-B...101?nav=SEARCH
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  #11  
Old 10-29-2015, 01:34 PM
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The weather has been nasty the past couple days. Still haven't got under the thing to figure out reinforcement opportunities.

Thanks for the southco link. They have a nice selection of hinges. I'll browse through there to see if anything catches my eye.

Vortec - Interesting approach, but I don't think its the best solution for what he's trying to do.
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  #12  
Old 10-30-2015, 02:44 AM
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Red face

Will the owner of the trailer take the time to lower the trailer jack to give extra support on the hitch.

Your going to be putting extra strain on this as well

Unless your using a pintle hook

As your loading the off side of the trailer is going to want to raise as the loading side goes down.

This is putting lots of extra pressure on the ball coupling .

If this Quad gets loaded only a few times a year it might not be a issue

Then I might just be getting paranoid after watching a trailer with $$60,000.00 worth of welders .

Sway to the point the hitch broke

The reinforcement of the trailer is going to be pretty straight forward
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  #13  
Old 10-30-2015, 10:00 AM
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Hmm, I don't think the trailer will try to roll that much when loading the quad, but for the sake of discussion, does anyone know the allowable misalignment of a ball hitch? 5 degrees? 10 degrees? 30 degrees?
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  #14  
Old 11-02-2015, 03:48 PM
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So, coming back to this quick like.
Yesterday, I happened to see a trailer like in the OP with two Quads loaded sideways, and the solution to the loading was so simple!
They had bolted aluminum ramps across the top rail and had another set of ramps that they connected to the set that they bolted on... they could drive up and off the other side just be moving the ramps. The Loading ramps are then simply put in to the trailer for transport; and when there is the need to use the trailer for other purposes the ramps are just unbolted.
Seemed like a good solution.

E
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  #15  
Old 11-02-2015, 05:24 PM
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Nice. That would be simple for sure.

I crawled under it over the weekend and tried to envision what I'd have to do to strengthen the deck. The spring hangers are integrated into the side walls, so the walls are indeed a huge portion of the supporting structure. To be comfortable with cutting the side off, I would want to run channel or tube the length of the deck and tie the spring hangers into it.

I told my buddy he'll have a couple hundred bucks into material alone to strengthen the deck and construct a door. I think his best bet is to leave this trailer as-is and find a small deckover or go with a ramp solution similar to what you saw this weekend.
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