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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 11-24-05, 12:18 AM   #1
Autokat
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I just finished this off , I got the idea while I was in hospital last time but only now got around to building it .

I built this out of

2 metal sides from a spring based bed ( the blue bits )
1 metal chair ( silver / brown bit )
2 wheels off my 2 daughters long dead 16" bikes
1 old sissy bar from I don't know where ?
A few nuts and bolts I had lying around
And a couple of pressure pack paint cans I had in the shed .
Oh and an old storage container .

The hitch is just a piece of car tyre cut down and it works a treat .
I just measured the box and made the trailer frame a little larger simple as that the chrome piece is the sissy bar part for supporting the centre of the box .I know it doesn't seem like anything special but I built this out of these things to make it strong but it's stronger than I thought I'll finish with some stats .And it fits a childs car seat perfectly with room in the front . It's awesome !

Box 80 ltr capacity
Overall weight 16 lbs
Overall width to outside of the axle 65 cm
Overall length from back to hitch 127 cm
How much weight can it carry without breaking ME , 175lbs , 82kg ,
Cost $ 0.00
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Old 11-24-05, 01:07 AM   #2
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Neat project! Beats spending $$$ on something that won't really work any better.
Everybody needs a crappy MTB and a home made trailer!
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Old 11-24-05, 01:09 AM   #3
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Fantastic. DIY is wonderful. Now King George the Bushy wouldn't be happy, as you are not contibuting to the economy. But then again, he passed "No Child Left Behind" and took 7 years to get through college
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Old 11-24-05, 11:56 AM   #4
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Suggest that you consider adding to the frame to provide an outside
support point for the axels. The way it is now there is a lot of strain
and leverage on the axle in the downward & forward axis. Normal
flex in the frame will, in time, fail either the frame or the axel.

The design and excution of the design is well done, mate but not finished.

Last edited by Nightshade; 11-24-05 at 12:03 PM.
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Old 11-24-05, 01:10 PM   #5
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That's neat. I won't tell you what the value of the sissy bar was to collectors, or you would know that the trailer cost you more than you think.

What did you use for an axle for the wheels?

How does it connect to the bike?

I like your design and would like to build one too.
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Old 11-24-05, 01:29 PM   #6
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Great Build!

(Close up) Pictures of hitch /Bike connected to trailer & details please!! I am about to build something as well, it would be most helpfull. Thanks.
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Old 11-24-05, 02:56 PM   #7
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Awesome! I want to make one!
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Old 11-24-05, 10:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abeyance
Fantastic. DIY is wonderful. Now King George the Bushy wouldn't be happy, as you are not contibuting to the economy. But then again, he passed "No Child Left Behind" and took 7 years to get through college
You'll note that he's probably never contributed to George's economy.
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Old 11-24-05, 11:06 PM   #9
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I doubt it'll fail anytime soon ( when they do I'll just grab another junker)as I won't be carrying enough weight to bend it and anyway the steel that the axle is bolted through is 1/4 inch thick solid steel as is the whole frame ( that's why it's so strong ). I've also gone to 20" wheels I found in the shed and fitted guards .
And here are the pictures of the hitch for v1nce , it's made from a piece of alloy about 8mm thick I had just cut to shape and twisted a little with a large shifter , the hitch is just a piece of car tyre , it's strong ,flexible and will last for a couple of years and when it dies just cut another piece . The bolt is not staying I want to get a padlock to put through instead ( should slow thieves down ).

Last edited by Autokat; 11-24-05 at 11:21 PM.
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Old 11-25-05, 04:19 AM   #10
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I really like it, this version is even better! The 20 inch is a def. improvement as tires are more common/cheaper and the wheels look like better quality.

Thanks for those pics!
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Old 11-25-05, 06:25 AM   #11
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Nah the wheels are just old bmx rims I just painted them silver with a spray can I had .look new now
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Old 11-25-05, 10:45 AM   #12
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"I doubt it'll fail anytime soon ( when they do I'll just grab another junker)as I won't be carrying enough weight to bend it and anyway the steel that the axle is bolted through is 1/4 inch thick solid steel as is the whole frame ( that's why it's so strong ). I've also gone to 20" wheels I found in the shed and fitted guards ."

I hope not, mate. If you don't load it heavy the 20" wheels WILL help a lot as they
offer much less leverage on the axel mount than larger wheels did. You can also
upgrade the axel to hardened steel and gain more torsional load stablity if needed.

I really like your hitch as it's so simple that it has to work. It's way better than some
of the more complex schemes I've seen over the years. Thank's for sharing it, mate.
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Old 11-25-05, 05:16 PM   #13
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really nice work.

to stiffen the axle you could use one long piece of steel rod threaded on both ends and use it for both axles. if that becomes an issue.
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Old 11-26-05, 08:18 AM   #14
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I'm kind of leaning with Tightwad about bending the axels-- I've always sandwiched the wheels between 2 parallel 1"X2" peices of wood running down both sides, capped front and back by light steel angle iron. I've always thought the axles couldn't stand being hung unsupported off the sides of the cart.

But then I've "thought" and heard a lot of crazy stuff about bikes that turned out to be true

Really nice hitch however!

Please report back about your trailer-- I'm really interested about how well it holds up over time. Very cool project that more cyclists ought to get started.
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Old 11-26-05, 09:06 AM   #15
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I honestly can't see how the axles would fail ? surely the bearings would give up first ? The frame on this won't bend unless a truck drove over it . so with a big weight on it the sides still cant flex ( that was the idea of using such strong steel ) If I grabbed the wheels and really pulled on them the wheels would probably start to flex .Or what would be the difference in using a solid axle or doing what I have done and mounting the axle into a hole made just big enough for the axle to fit ? and as for the axle itself failing ...Go and grab an axle of a piece of solid steel rod 140mm long and 10mm thick bolt one end to something solid and try to bend the it without some kind of leverage device on it . It's damn hard isn't it .lol

And lets not forget about the single sided forks they make now They wouldn't make them if they failed .
My theory is if the mounting point is strong enough to not flex on one side as this is it should have no problems holding up ( I could be wrong but we'll find out in the long run ) I have built trailers before out of other materials to save on weight ( and bolted the wheels as every trailer has them ) and they have all ended up failing simply because the frame wasn't strong enough and if I only had them bolted to one side on those trailers they wouldv'e lasted about a week . but as I already said the angle steel is 45 x 45 mm x 5 mm thick ( it's heavy duty ) so I think it'll hold up very well but we shall see .

Last edited by Autokat; 11-26-05 at 09:20 AM.
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Old 11-27-05, 08:24 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Autokat
I honestly can't see how the axles would fail ? surely the bearings would give up first ? The frame on this won't bend unless a truck drove over it . so with a big weight on it the sides still cant flex ( that was the idea of using such strong steel ) If I grabbed the wheels and really pulled on them the wheels would probably start to flex .Or what would be the difference in using a solid axle or doing what I have done and mounting the axle into a hole made just big enough for the axle to fit ? and as for the axle itself failing ...Go and grab an axle of a piece of solid steel rod 140mm long and 10mm thick bolt one end to something solid and try to bend the it without some kind of leverage device on it . It's damn hard isn't it .lol

And lets not forget about the single sided forks they make now They wouldn't make them if they failed .
My theory is if the mounting point is strong enough to not flex on one side as this is it should have no problems holding up ( I could be wrong but we'll find out in the long run ) I have built trailers before out of other materials to save on weight ( and bolted the wheels as every trailer has them ) and they have all ended up failing simply because the frame wasn't strong enough and if I only had them bolted to one side on those trailers they wouldv'e lasted about a week . but as I already said the angle steel is 45 x 45 mm x 5 mm thick ( it's heavy duty ) so I think it'll hold up very well but we shall see .
Mate, Please understand that we are NOT picking on your work only offering a caution. As a whole it's
a fine job it really is. That said, a failed axel while riding can lead to serious injury and that is our
only concern.

The frame is strong due the fact that it's 1/4" ANGLE iron which means that ANY torsional load or twist
will be forced to the joining point of the axel. When you get forces that are generated on a loaded
trailer while riding they come in several axis AT THE SAME TIME. THAT is what will fail the axel. That
is also why the axel needs more support to spread the load and rolling forces over THE ENTIRE FRAME.

Those single point forks you mentiond work because they are a torsional TUBE which is way, way
stronger than any solid for loading in several axis at once.

So please use your trailer with care lightly loaded as it is now.
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Old 11-27-05, 04:23 PM   #17
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I know no one is saying it's a bad design I just can't see it failing , I haven't built much in the way these things , I grew up building and working on cars & motorcycles so I've gone with what I know that's all . Tell you what I'll keep you posted and when it fails I owe you a beer
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Old 11-27-05, 06:39 PM   #18
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"Tell you what I'll keep you posted and when it fails I owe you a beer"

Fair enough , mate, fair enough.
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Old 11-27-05, 07:21 PM   #19
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Lets hope it fails soon
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Old 01-13-06, 11:56 AM   #20
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I was thinking about how it wasn't going to be that easy for me to do that hitch because I had no car tires to use... but my new landlord has a zillion in the back yard.

So, anybody in the philadelphia area who wants to come pick up junky car tires for this project or something else... feel free!
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Old 01-13-06, 09:31 PM   #21
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Clever, Autokat. That's putting the noodle in turbo mode.
I've seen a homeless guy that built a bob out of an old flyer wagon and a pair of 24" MTB front wheels. I believe he used a solid axle on it.
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