There are a few things missing in my life; hair, sanity, money, a trailer...
I can only do something about the trailer (and possibly the hair, but that's for a different forum), so I have searched these pages for inspiration and ideas.
I really wanted a loaded out AT Chaser, but since the biggest hills around here are fire ant mounds and 90% of its use will be runs to Home Depot, that was a bit of expensive overkill.
I watched the site for m416s or CDN 101s to customize but came to the quick realization that another missing thing is the ability to weld and fabricate.
Then I came across jscherb's thread for his bolt-together fiberglass trailer tub kit with a Harbor Freight frame, and thought "hmm...I have a wrench around here somewhere. I can do that!"
(Side note - if you haven't seen jscherb's mad design and fabrication skills, take a look at some of his projects. Really cool stuff. )
And when the kits finally came on the market (dinoot.com) I placed an order and raced off to HF to buy a frame. If you do it the budget way you can get a great little finished trailer for right around $1k. Perfect for light use and budget friendly to boot. Scott is a sponsor of the forum and he has great customer service.
But then the better angels of judgment descended upon me and I thought " but what if I do decide to climb Ouray, or explore the Great North Woods. Will that HF frame hold up?"
While the answer is probably yes, I convinced myself otherwise. I needed a place to mount Jerry Cans and a toolbox to carry recovery equipment. Maybe a 12v system, water tanks... Home Depot is at least 5 miles from home - I could get stranded!
And since I was going to upgrade to a heavier axle with a matching bolt pattern and brakes I might as well have someone who knows what they are doing weld up a solid frame.
So now, sitting in my garage is the tub kit, various parts, pieces and doodads, while at a custom trailer shop sits the beginnings of a frame that can meet the challenge of any Florida ant hill.
Speaking of challenges - oh the trailer shop! Very nice guys there. I gave them a sketch and they gave me a price. Then they went fishing. Then they had to get a bunch of BBQ grills done for the 4th. Then they had to move the shop...
But the rudimentary elements of the frame are coming together, and if imageshack cooperates, I will now show you...
The idea here is to mount a tongue box ahead of a space for a Jerry can and small propane tank. I asked for a small steel plate there for rock protection. No problem!
Except, as you can see, the angle of the tongue comes nowhere near the angle of the box, and the steel plate is poised to slice through both jungle and thigh. So off it will come to be redone.
The back obviously needed a receiver for a bike rack and protection from shopping carts, so it will get a Smittybilt CJ bumper:
Oh, and they have the axle set up as spring-under. That's getting fixed too.
Hopefully on Saturday (not sure which Saturday though) I will drag the frame home and get to work on the floor and tub. The plan is to get it road worthy for the Southeastern Regional Rally at the end of September.