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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #61 ·
Well, I scrapped the arms for the tent lift. I just didn’t like the way they came out. So… I started over. I’m going with what I know works, but with a slight mod.
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I had to go get more steel today, and I asked why the weld tabs I bought were so irregular, and I was told it was because the ones I bought, were for fencing and non-critical projects. The ones I need, were in a different place, and of course, they are 2 or 3 times the price, but they are precision cut and drilled. So, the new design of the arms will cut in half, the number of tabs I need.

That’s all I got to today.
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #62 ·
I missed a picture.

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This angle gives a better view of the ends. I will weld them all up, and smooth out all the rough edges, and make them look pretty, after they are test mounted for function.
 

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Your attention to detail is amazing. I'm a detail freak but I wouldn't have thought to cap the ends of the struts. This thread is inspirational.

You've been doing this for a while. I can tell by the bifocals on the bench in post #61. :)

Good Luck, L.M.
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #64 ·
Your attention to detail is amazing. I'm a detail freak but I wouldn't have thought to cap the ends of the struts. This thread is inspirational.

You've been doing this for a while. I can tell by the bifocals on the bench in post #61. :)

Good Luck, L.M.
Thank you "Luckymac" so much for the compliments. It's not why I post on the forum, but nice to receive. I have gained a wealth of knowledge, and inspiration following so many other builds from people who were willing to take the time to post their builds, I am simply following their example, with the hope that something I have posted might inspire someone as well.
I actually have not been doing this long at all. In fact, this is my first attempt at building a trailer from the ground up. The closest I have come to it, is the modifications to the old jeep trailer I bought years ago. All of my experience has been working with wood, and thanks to a great friend of mine, who has helped me expand my abilities, I am able to do this.

Happy Trails!
 

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I built a teardrop 11 years ago and still have it. It has worked well through the years.
Now, Mrs. Lucky wants the luxury of an indoor shower and I want a bathroom at night. Wilderness camping is no issue for me, but when we stay in a campground, a guy can't just hop out of the trailer and stand next to a tree.
Tab makes a teardeop style trailer with a rear galley, but they're so generic and a new one is $28K. I have a frame from a wrecked popup that I bought at a salvage distribution pool and parted out just about everything but the frame and fridge. That will be the basis for our new "canned ham" but with the teardrop style rear galley. Like a cross between a Shasta and a teardrop.
The quality of what I see in your posts is motivation for me to get back on the build.

Good Luck, L.M.
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #66 ·
I built a teardrop 11 years ago and still have it. It has worked well through the years.
Now, Mrs. Lucky wants the luxury of an indoor shower and I want a bathroom at night. Wilderness camping is no issue for me, but when we stay in a campground, a guy can't just hop out of the trailer and stand next to a tree.
Tab makes a teardeop style trailer with a rear galley, but they're so generic and a new one is $28K. I have a frame from a wrecked popup that I bought at a salvage distribution pool and parted out just about everything but the frame and fridge. That will be the basis for our new "canned ham" but with the teardrop style rear galley. Like a cross between a Shasta and a teardrop.
The quality of what I see in your posts is motivation for me to get back on the build.

Good Luck, L.M.
That is a nice looking trailer! And I love the galley set up and the natural wood finish. Not sure yet how I will finish the kitchen area, but I would like to leave it natural depending on the materials I end up using.
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #67 ·
Well, I changed my mind, and went ahead and welded up the arms for the tent lift.

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There not as pretty as I would have liked, but they're straight, and functional. Besides, when I get the paint on them, it won't matter anyway. Gonna order the tabs on eBay, from a company that sells laser cut. they are about 2.50 a piece, but they will all be the exact same dimensions and tolerances.
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #68 ·
So, I finally got the tabs on Saturday, and they were not what I ordered. I won’t bore you all with the details, but I ended up taking the “blank” over 2” long tabs to a machine shop, to have them cut the tabs to the right size, and drill the holes. By the way, it was not the vender’s fault, it was mine. And we’ll leave it at that.

So, after a week of being busy working off the “honey do” list, I am back at the shop. I was able to get the lift platform arms tack welded in place, and it looks like it will work out just like I planned.

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I am going to weld stops on the bottom of each arm, so they stop where I want them too, and I am still working on the mechanism that will do the lifting. I did take a piece of tubing, about 4 ft long, and using the frame side as a fulcrum, lifted the platform to see how much effort it would take. And, I think with the right leverage, it will lift the tent and frame with little effort. And as I get older, and start having difficulties raising the tent, I will just move the fulcrum, and make the lever longer. Or, I could make sure that I am wheeling with my son, so he can do it. LOL!!!

That’s all I have for today. It's kind of hot. Green is outside, and blue is inside.

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I hope everyone following, are staying safe, and healthy!!!

Happy Trails!
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #69 ·
Got back to the shop for a while on Saturday. I had to get the parts and materials I needed for the tent lift mechanism. I spent most of the time pondering, but, did manage to get a few things done.

Today, I went in with the goal of completing a working mechanism to raise the tent platform.

I mocked up the connecting shaft bushings and the shaft itself. For the ends of the shaft, I’m using threaded couplers in ½” ID, so I can use a piece of ½” threaded rod to thread in the couple a bit, that will slide in the ¾” OD, DOM tubing, which is ½” ID. They are welded on both ends. And I used a 1” piece of DOM, that is ¾” ID for the bushings (I had to grind a little of the top spines on the threaded coupler, on one end of the connecting shaft, so it would slide in and out of the bushing).

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Next, I worked on the lifting point of the tent platform that the mechanism will attach too.
Half way through, I realized that I was going to have to move everything out away from the frame more, because of the box. That messed up what I had planned for locking the platform in the down, and up position. I’ll have to figure something else out for that later.

Next, I worked on the arms that will do the lifting. I’m using 11/16 impact sockets, that connect to the shaft ends. So, I bored a 1” hole in the end of the short arms, and welded the sockets to them.

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Then drilled the holes in the other arms for bolts. The total travel of the platform, is 21”. So, I added 3” to the total. The drive arm is shorter than the connecting arm because of the difference in height of the platform and frame (in this picture, I still have to cut the second arm. I left it long, in case I had to change something).

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And after everything is said and done, it actually worked! Just as I hoped it would. Go figure.

I did a video of it in action. Unfortunately, I couldn’t upload it on the forum. I used a ½” breaker bar for the test, and I was able to lift the platform easily with one arm, but that was without the tent, I’m sure I will have to use serious effort with the tent on it. Can’t wait. (I just realized, that I did not get a still of the platform in the up position. It's in the video I can't seem to upload).

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The last thing I did, was radius the ends of the arms to clean them up (I didn’t get a picture of that this trip. Next time.

Happy Trails!
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #70 ·
Back at it today. I made some changes to the tent lift mechanism, with the help of a friend. The lift mechanism worked well, but it was to long, and the arms would not line up. By having the arms line up, it would allow me to add another hole for a second pin, that would lock the arms in the straight position, securing the tent in the up position.

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In the second picture, I snapped the picture before Rick finished the complete cycle of the lift. The arms end up straight. We also did a load test, with my friend sitting in for the tent. we put a sheet of plywood up for a seat, and I lifted the platform (including Rick) up into place. I was able to do it with a 17" breaker bar, but I have to admit, I had to really bear down, in order to accomplish it. So, we added 7" to the length, for a total of 24", and the second try was much easier. I could almost do it with one arm (almost, but not quite). The tent is approx. 150 lbs., and Rick added 220 Lbs., which is 70 lbs. more than I would be lifting. And just so everyone is on the same page, gas shocks are my plan B, if the effort is to great. Tomorrow, I will finish that up.

The other thing I worked on today was the front basket. I got the bottom frame tack welded in place, and I will work on the top rail, and the vertical tubes tomorrow.

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My friend has some big sheets of .80 steel sheet, that I will cut the front and sides from, using the plasma cutter (that should be fun). Then for the bottom, I am using a steel mesh, so water will drain out. Once the front basket is done, the last thing I need to do is mount the tent. By the end of the week, I should have all the steel done. That means that I am going to have to bite the bullet, and purchase the material for the box. To date, I am in to the trailer for about $3,000.00. The material for the box, will probably be in the neighborhood of $1,500.00. I’m hoping to sell my other trailer to offset the cost. I am planning to sell it without the tent. However, if someone really wanted the tent, I would let it go for another $1,000.00, and purchase a new one. When I’m ready to list it, I will list the trailer and price on the proper site in the forum, including pictures and details.

See you tomorrow.

Happy Trails!
 

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You're using .80 steel sheets? Is it going to be bulletproof? Do you mean .080 steel sheets?

Keep up the good work.:)(y)

Good Luck, L.M.
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #72 ·
You're using .80 steel sheets? Is it going to be bulletproof? Do you mean .080 steel sheets?

Keep up the good work.:)(y)

Good Luck, L.M.
oops! That's funny you should say that. My friend and I were having a similar conversation this afternoon, when contemplating using .120, because that is what it turned out he had. I told him , I was not planning on going through a block wall with it. I'm thinking more like 14 or 12 gauge.
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #73 ·
So, today I focused on the “wood bin/propane/what ever else needs to go in there”, bin. Not much to tell really on the fab side. I had to work out the angle for the ends of the lower frame, and then on the top rail, I did a miter joint. The lower joint was 15 degrees. And I kept the front rail straight, in case I want to use the end to plug in a small table for the stove, or something. I will have to get the sheet metal for the front and sides, and RW has the expanded metal I will use for the bottom. Also, in the corners at each end of the rack, I will put heavier sheeting to bear the weight of the propane bottles (2). One will be for the stove and lantern. The other for a future gas fire pit. With all of the fires, and the fire restrictions, it makes sense.

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All for now.



Happy Trails!
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #74 ·
Continued progress on the wood bin (for lack of a better description). I drew out the shape of one of the side sections of the front bin from a piece of scrap .120 plate, unfortunately, there it was only big enough to get one side out of it. The propane bottles will live there. My friend has more of that material, only it is an almost full sheet of .120 steel, in a 4’ x 8’ sheet, which I suspect, will be very heavy. I will muster up the energy to dig that out tomorrow.

spacers and cross braces for the floor of the bin.

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expanded metal floor.

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both sides will be .120 steel plate, where the propane bottles will live. I am going to put in a divider on both sides of the bin, to protect the PG bottles.

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I am going to use 16 Ga. steel for the sides and front and back of the box. (the back piece, will most likely be attached to the front of the box).


Happy Trails!
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #75 ·
So, today I cut out the two side pieces where the PG bottles will sit. Broke out the plasma cutter, and cut a piece off the end of the sheet of .120 sheet my friend has (wow that sheet was heavy). I had to use a pair of vice grips to be able to hold on to it, and move it around.

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Once they were both fitted, I welded them in place.

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I’m going to go down tomorrow maybe to purchase the front, sides, and back, to finish off the bin. I am going to have the metal supply company cut the pieces to size, so all I will have to do is make small adjustments. I guess I will work on preparing my garage for the next phase, the box.

Happy Trails!
 

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Discussion Starter · #76 ·
Howdy fellow Overlanders!

I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything, I have been working on piddly stuff on the trailer. Nothing major since finishing the floor in the front box. I sat down today, and made a list of the things I still need to do on the trailer chassis, which is not a hole lot. I’m at the point where I need to start ordering material for the box. There have also been family distractions, like grandsons having birthdays in the same month, stuff like that. I will be preparing my garage for the trailer box build for the next couple of days, I hope to start construction next week. We’ll see how that goes.

Happy Trails!
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #77 ·
Here is an update and a few pics. I have been working on some of the small projects, that are, for lack of a better term, “boring”. But they need to get done, so I am slowly chipping away at them. The past few days, I have been working on mounting the propane bottle, and I made a longer arm for the tent lift. I also installed the safety chain on the tongue, so it is ready for towing.

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I am also working on the, “more detailed” drawings for the box, with measurements. I am using a ¾” = 1 foot scale on the drawings, to see it better. I have been dreading this for a while, but I have to have accurate measurements, so I know exactly where things are going to land. More updates later.

Happy Trails!
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #78 ·
Back at the shop today. I was able to knock 2 more items off my to-do list. I finished fabricating the mount for the propane bottle, and installed the pre-drilled steel tubing, for the stabilizing jacks, and welded on the feet. I still have a ways to go, but I am at least 2 steps closer.

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I am continuing to work on the drawings. I’m pretty much ready to start on the box, but I have to wait a little longer before I can purchase the material. I just spent a bunch of money on a new hard top for my TJ. The soft top won’t repel water any more, and the TJ is living outside right now.

Happy trails!
 

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Discussion Starter · #79 ·
So, today I worked on the area where the propane bottle will live. The problem I had, is that the height of the bottle was too high for the spot I wanted to put it. So, my solution (thanks to my friends input), was to lower the PB. I accomplished this by fabricating a deeper pocket in the frame with a bottom in it. This will require me to cut a hole in the bottom of the box (when I get to that part), which will be sealed with foam insulation and automotive caulking. Then the bottle mount I made, will be bolted in that pocket. I used 2" angle iron to make a three sided frame, and used the back of the bumper for the fourth side. The bottom is 1/8" plate, cut to about 10 1/2" square.

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So, I got all of that done, only to realize that I made a mistake in the orientation of the bottle when I drilled the holes and mounted it. I’m sure that those of you who are watching this build, probably caught this right away, however, I didn’t until after it was done.

So just for fun, how many of you can point out in this picture where I messed up? Keep in mind, this will be a small storage cubby in the corner of the box with an exterior side access.

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I’m still working on the box drawings, and I am starting to think about how I am going to mount the solar panel on the trailer.

Happy trails!
 

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2005 limited edition Willy's Jeep, 4.5" Rubicon Express lift, 33in tires on 15in steel wheels.
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Discussion Starter · #80 ·
Not much progress to report this trip. I fixed the oversite on the propane mount latching issue.

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I’m still working on how I want to set up the solar mounting platform. Today, I mostly helped a friend with his project. Don’t worry though, I’m still plucking away at it.

Happy Trails!
 
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