New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

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New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby elcam84 » Mon May 29, 2017 7:30 pm

Well i needed a utility trailer and Northern had the 5x10 pipe railed trailers for $779. Its a carryon brand trailer which isnt the best but it was cheap and available...

Overall not too bad. It has more twist than id like to see but nothing a couple pieces of equipment cant hold down and lift and twist back out.... I have been using it all day today hauling the mower and trailer and firewood to my parents house. I wasnt going to hand carry the wood...

The issue i have is one i knew was going to be a problem when i first saw it was that the axle is too far back. It has too much tongue weight empty and way way too much with any kind of a load in it. The tongue is heavy enough when empty that i have a hard time picking it up and im a big guy and used to lifting heavy stuff...

Here is the question where would you guys place the axle? My plan is to keep it as a utility trailer but build a teardrop shaped pod that will roll onto the trailer right on the pipe rails. So it serves two purposes. I have built a few 16' tandem axle trailers years ago when it was under $400 in materials... Just looking for ideas and thoughts as right now i have so much tongue weight with just the mower that the front end of the tow vehicle is loosing traction.

Tow vehicle is a 2017 sorento 6cyl. Even with the trailer loaded i can still pull away from a street light faster than empty cars...... 3k towing cap.Image

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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby elcam84 » Mon May 29, 2017 8:15 pm

Just to add i went out and measured the axle placement. Its 20" back from the trailer centerline which is twice what i would have done. Oh and the firewood was that pile behind the trailer along with that plastic mower trailer on the far left and my mower was at the back of the trailer. I ran a tongue weight calculator and yeah it was way higher than it should be...

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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby working on it » Mon May 29, 2017 9:38 pm

  • I could make a facetious comment that you might emulate my trailer build, and end up with little or no tongue weight when completed, and having to rely on cargo placed up front, to equalize the load. My trailer had the axle too far forward, compared to the normal standards, but was where I wanted it, to comply with my long-term plans. But, at the completion of my initial build (I've continued to modify it for four more years, since), I hadn't gotten the right components to achieve a "balanced" trailer, yet.
  • I'm sure that most people would recommend moving the axle forward, as the most sensible solution, but I've never been sensible, where a challenge is concerned. I think that you could take advantage of the axle position being so far to the rear, by concentrating your heaviest gear in the rear, over and aft of the axle, and moving the lightest parts progressively forward.
  • Not knowing your planned design goals, nor where and how you wish to use your trailer, I can't make specific suggestions as to the placement of items in detail, but if I were faced with building mine on your trailer frame, I would do this: 1)it would be a semi-offroad style squareback or grasshopper, with a tail extending a foot past the trailer end, angled up for clearance, 2)I would make a two-part hatch, the lower angling upward from the trailer frame, and overlapped upon closing, by the upper part (as a weather seal)-upper part housing kitchen/galley gear, lower part concealing storage and mechanical operations (A/C, heater, generator?, water & pump, battery, miscellaneous), 3)I would place a bulkhead at the centerline of the axle, about 5 ft tall, where you could put storage cabinets and even a clothes rack, and perhaps seats (folding down from the bulkhead), for changing clothes, 4)moving forward, the roof starts to gradually slope downward to 4 feet high, where it angles down to meet the front rail , while inside, the clothes and changing area is followed by the side-entry door(s), with optional windows both in the door or on the sidewalls, and a bedding area from there to the front, with a sealed skylight on the front sloped upper bulkhead, and 5)additional ventilation could be added most anywhere on the sidewalls (I prefer that to possible leaks from an overhead vent). The triangular frame front/tongue could be used for additional storage, depending on weight balance, with a tongue box and/or bike racks or BBQ grill (just thinking!).
  • Sorry, I seem to have transferred my "what if"s from my build wish-list, to your build. But, maybe you could actually make something like this plan into reality, where I could not. Good luck.
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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby MtnDon » Mon May 29, 2017 9:54 pm

This link is more or less what I have done when building a general purpose utility trailer. Things may get more complicated when you intend to have a slide in as some of the use. How is the weight to be arranged in the slide in? If like a typical TD then the ideal UT axle placement may be wrong.

It was probably built the way it is to ensure the tongue had enough weight. Sort of a dumb way to do it I think.
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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby elcam84 » Mon May 29, 2017 10:19 pm

I think they just way over compensated to make sure there isnt too little tongue weight. Instead of doing it right they went overboard and created another issue. Will get them on the phone tomorrow and see what they have to say...

As it is right now its a little sketchey to drive with a load because its pulling traction off the front tires. Have to be easy off the line going uphill. I have towed heavier trailers with no issue but their axles were properly placed. Hopefully the manufacturer will have some solution to have the axle moved. I would do it but i only have welders for thin metal anymore.

Been looking online at other 5x10 trailers and they all have the axle in the right place or within 2 to 3".

The camper design and build is a little ways off right now so ill have lots of time to design it. But as is even with a really heavy galley at the back it still wouldnt be enough to counteract the axle placement unless it was hanging a couple feet off the back of the trailer...

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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby Noreast » Tue May 30, 2017 10:03 am

It would be pretty easy to move the axle forward a bit.

Move the rear end of the leaf springs to the forward mount holes and then drill some holes for the new location for the front of the spring mounting. It looks like that should get you closer to an ideal/usable trailer balance. Probably 15ish inches forward of where it is now
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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby dancam » Tue May 30, 2017 1:04 pm

I bought a carry-on trailer as well, garbage... i paid $1200 for mine...
I have to move the axle foreward as well but i have to move it anyway. Why? Because the axle isnt welded on even close to square. Nothing is square on the trailer. The outer sides down the length bow in and out quite a bit, the crossmembers underneath arent welded on straight, tongue is welded on in a strange way...
But ya, check how square your axle is compared to the ball coupler. On mine they hadnt even welded the spring hangers the same distance apart! So one side is long and the spring is stretched a bit-axle sits closer to trailer, and the other is short and compressed a bit and the axle is farther away. Also put axle on right under a crossmember so if you loaded it up and hit a good bump the axle probly would hit it...
Same trailer as yours i think. 5x10
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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby elcam84 » Tue May 30, 2017 1:29 pm

Ouch that was allot for yours. I went with it because it was lighter than the others and on sale was a good price. I will measure how square the axle is in a bit. Most everything seems square except that the trailer is warped overall probably due to being stacked on a semi and tied down so that jupiters gravity couldnt rip it off...

Moving the axle on these trailers involves cutting off the spring hangars cutting off that vertical brace ahead of the tire. Cutting the fenders off and then rewelding everything.

Here is a pic of the side of the trailer. The tape is the furthest back the axle should be on a utility trailer. Utility trailers can have the axle anywhere from centered under the box to 1" per foot of box length (10" in this case). Remember utility trailers will almost always have their load at the front of the trailer hence no need to force extra tongue weight with axle placement. And they are light enough that when empty they dont need to provide much weight on the tongue.

The lady that does the trailers at northern gave me her email and said to take pics/measurements and send links to other trailer brands that have them placed correctly and she will forward that to corporate.

The plan is for now... See what they will do....

Option 1 is to return the trailer and have them cover the sales tax registration and plate and title which is about $140.

Option 2 is they have the trailer fixed.

Option 3 is they build another correctly and exchange trailers which also involves $140 for TTL. This option is cheaper dor them than having it fixed.

And there are other options....

If they want to give me a refund ill probably buy a big tex 5x10. They run under 1k if i pick it up at the factory and around 1200 at the dealer.




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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby elcam84 » Tue May 30, 2017 1:32 pm

Hit the wrong button and the image adder wasnt there...

Cant stand white wheels as they look nasty the first time you use the trailer. Paint is single stage acrylic enamel.

Here is the link to the big tex trailer. Its built much better and the sides are higher etc.


http://www.bigtextrailers.com/29sa-single-axle-utility/
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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby dancam » Tue May 30, 2017 1:45 pm

elcam84 wrote:Hit the wrong button and the image adder wasnt there...

Cant stand white wheels as they look nasty the first time you use the trailer. Paint is single stage acrylic enamel.

Here is the link to the big tex trailer. Its built much better and the sides are higher etc.


http://www.bigtextrailers.com/29sa-single-axle-utility/
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I dont see the picture with the tape...
If you like the rest of the trailer go with option 3. But have a careful look over it. The tex traioer is much heavier duty...
I didnt discover most of my problems until here or so. Image


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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby elcam84 » Tue May 30, 2017 2:11 pm

There is a piece of blue painters tape on the pipe rail above and to the right of the top of the fender. Just to the left of the sun reflection. The pic shows up for me.

I just sent off an email to northern tool so will see how that goes...

I may make a trip out to one of the big tex dealers and see what they have and compare pricing.

I had the fleeting idea of using this trailer to go pick up some steel and an axle and build a trailer. Havent done that in 20 years... Luckily quality trailer is here in town and i can get a discount through a friend. But i really dont want to build one right now. However if i did it would be a torsion axle.
Quality trailer used to sell a 16' trailer kit for around $450. All the square tube steel, two axles, springs and a bulldog hitch. Been a few days since then...

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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby dancam » Tue May 30, 2017 2:20 pm

elcam84 wrote:There is a piece of blue painters tape on the pipe rail above and to the right of the top of the fender. Just to the left of the sun reflection. The pic shows up for me.

I just sent off an email to northern tool so will see how that goes...

I may make a trip out to one of the big tex dealers and see what they have and compare pricing.

I had the fleeting idea of using this trailer to go pick up some steel and an axle and build a trailer. Havent done that in 20 years... Luckily quality trailer is here in town and i can get a discount through a friend. But i really dont want to build one right now. However if i did it would be a torsion axle.
Quality trailer used to sell a 16' trailer kit for around $450. All the square tube steel, two axles, springs and a bulldog hitch. Been a few days since then...

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I see it now :)
Would be a good idea to compare the trailers.
I would have been way better off building my own but didnt because i dont feel like going through the deal getting it inspected, getting a vin and registration and insurance. Not sure how easy that would be for you.
On the weight i believe my trailer was 610 pounds to start with and was 110 pounds on the tongue. Thats just off memory though.

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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby aggie79 » Wed May 31, 2017 8:17 am

Could option #4 perhaps be to use the existing trailer, but replace the spring axle with a torsion axle (using the same wheels and tires)?
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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby elcam84 » Wed May 31, 2017 9:19 am

aggie79 wrote:Could option #4 perhaps be to use the existing trailer, but replace the spring axle with a torsion axle (using the same wheels and tires)?

Thats also possible however i really dont want to invest that much more in a brand new trailer.

As for homemade trailers they arent hard to do here. Just walk in and tell them you want ro register a home made trailer. They might want to see a reciept for some materials but when its under 4k its no biggie. I only insure this type of trailer for theft off the property as its covered for everything else under the regular car insurance. And in this case theft of property is covered by homeowners policy since its not in the driveway.

Here are a couple pics that show the twist in the trailer.... The twist across the front is 1" over 4'. The guy at carryon wanted pics of the twist so he is getting these as well. ImageImage

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Re: New 5x10 trailer bad axle placement...

Postby elcam84 » Wed May 31, 2017 12:02 pm

Just for kicks... Thinking if i kept the trailer what torsion axle from northern would you guys use on this trailer? Its a 3k gvw trailer.

Im thinking this one


http://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/ ... _200649001

I need to check measurements but maybe... I ask cause im coming up with an offer to northern to settle the issue cause either way its going to cost them on this deal. If i return the trailer they have to payback the ttl....

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