|Axles with new brackets for the hangers to lower the axles from the frame.|
|The trailer now has a tongue!|
|Primed hubs and supports.|
|Primed supports and all the spots I welded to prevent rust.|
|Got the wheels on. Luckily my dad's ginormous lift was able to jack up the entire trailer to make this step easy.|
|Truck and trailer unite! You may notice the trailer looks a little tilted. That's because we don't have the new ball mount in yet and this is the old one.|
|Covered tires to prep for painting.|
|First coat: Rustoleum exterior gloss paint.|
I thought this was going to be one of the easiest parts to building this trailer. Boy was I wrong! I purchased a light kit from Buccaneer Truck Stuff in Alexandria, La. These guys have all the stuff you need if you are building a trailer. I started putting on the rear lights and realized the way the frame was done I couldn't mount the lights evenly on both sides. So I had to fabricate some mounting brackets for the lights. That was actually the easy part. For the front side clearance lights I had to drill through the frame and attach the lights with a nut and bolt.
|Front side amber clearance lights(on each side). Tractor Supply $5 each. These are wired into the brown wire on each side.|
|Rear LED lights with signal, side view, and license plate light.|
At this point we were racing against the clock. It was about 2:30 on Friday afternoon and I wanted to get the trailer inspected by the state police before 5. But we still had to wire one more side clearance light and weld on the trailer tow chains to the tongue. So while my dad wired up the light I welded the chains on and touched it up with paint.
To register a trailer (in Louisiana), you need to get a homemade trailer affidavit from any Louisiana state police office and get it signed and notarized by any state certified notary. Then you have to bring it back to the state police office and turn the affidavit in so they can inspect and stamp the serial number on your trailer. They will literally bring out a hammer and pound it in on the tongue next to the coupler. I didn't know how strict the inspection process was going to be but the officer just said, "Now that's a trailer!" Then he asked me if the lights worked and I said yes. He didn't even make me turn them on. He then pounded the numbers in and handed me my receipt to take to the DMV. That was it! At this point it was 4:30. I made it just in the nick of time! The officer said my receipt was proof that it was registered and that I could go ahead and move it to take it to the DMV of my choosing. That was what I needed to hear to go ahead and make the trek home 3 1/2 hours away.
|Here is the completed trailer all hooked up and ready for the road!|
|Broken weld on the side of the frame. Not good!|
|Missing axle support|
|Broken droopy trailer :(|
Well, that brings my friend Keith to the story. He also has every tool known to man. But more importantly a welding machine. He was kind enough to let me use his shop and use whatever I needed to make this trailer right again. So all day Sunday and Monday morning I welded and welded. Fixed the broken stuff, re-welded spots I thought might be a risk, and added some new supports to weak spots. I also had to rewire some of the light because the wires snapped when the frame broke and drooped down.
|Re-welded some key structural spots.|
|This weld actually broke as well but the bolts on the inside kept it together.|
|Re-welded axle supports.|
|This was the main brake in the frame. There is now a 1/4 inch steel plate about a foot long behind this welded into place for added support.|
|She's back in business! Re-welded and supported, re-painted, and the lights work again! Thanks Keith!|
|48" tall 7,000 lb. farm jack|
So there were some ups and downs in building this but I finally did it and I can't really believe it myself! My next post will be installing the floor frame and sub-floor sheathing.
Wish me luck!