[TowerTalk] Building a Tower Trailer

Dino Darling dino at k6rix.com
Mon Jun 26 17:41:46 EDT 2006

I'm certainly not going to start a little banter war here, but let me
point out a few things...

First, while some of the following applies to Jim's comments, not
everything in this post is directed specifically at him.  It may appear
I'm being "a little hard on the Beaver" later in this post, but I only
mean to point out issues with posting a response to a question that has
nothing to do with the topic (or any topic on here for that matter) at
hand.  I know you know what I mean!

Kelly has a Force 12 LPT-1242 weighing in at 145 lbs which is real close
to a "few hundred pounds".  If we were talking about a W-51, then that
would be different.

Kelly needs it SMALL and LIGHTWEIGHT so he can "push it along the side
of my house into the back yard."  Hydraulics, generators, etc etc etc
does not sound like an option in this case.  A horse trailer conversion
would be a nightmare!

Most small watercraft trailers are designed to handle a minimum load of
1,000 lbs and would be overkill in this application yet probably the
best option none-the-less (ask me how I know).

Having built and designed trailers, I would like to get into specifics
to get Kelly off and running, but there are still too many questions. 
Most of those questions can be answered after a quick visit to US
Rentals to look at a light tower.  Extendable out riggers, they have
them; tower kick over device, they have them; raising fixture,
rotatable base, positive lockdown device, low cg, they have them! 
Actually, if Kelly can find an old light tower without the generator
and lights, he would be set!

I would hate to see a bunch of "this would be good", "I saw this once",
"I remember when", etc, rather than actually answering the question at
hand with concrete advice about Kelly's specific needs.  I know how
frustrating it can be to get an answer to a simple question from people
arm-chairing from the sidelines!  Someone e-mailed me once and said
something to the effect..."How many post does it take to get an answer
to a question on TT?"  The answer was, "15".  10 people who stopped
reading after the first sentence and are giving answers to questions
that were not asked; 2 people who say, "I would like to do the same
thing and could you forward your answers to me?"; 1 person to complain
about the number of posts; 1 moderator to calm the waters, and 1 person
who actually comes close to answering the specific question.  You have
to admit, this is pretty funny and for the most part, accurate!  ;-)

Kelly, e-mail me off the list and I'll teach you everything I know about

Dino  -  K6RIX
dino at k6rix.com

> -------- Original Message --------
> Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Building a Tower Trailer
> From: Jim Lux <jimlux at earthlink.net>
> Date: Mon, June 26, 2006 1:47 pm
> To: Dino Darling <dino at k6rix.com>, Kelly Johnson <n6kj.kelly at gmail.com>
> Cc: towertalk at contesting.com
> At 01:37 PM 6/26/2006, Dino Darling wrote:
> >Sure Kelly, That would be easy.
> >
> >To give you some ideas, head down to your local US Rentals and look at a
> >"light tower".  I used to build these as well as other traffic control
> >trailers.  Our club owns a home built tower trailer and my experience
> >with it has taught me what NOT to do.
> >
> >You first need to decide how much money you want to spend and if you are
> >going to build one from scratch or convert an old watercraft trailer.
> Another source of a sturdy trailer to start with would be a used horse
> trailer. They get pretty beat up after a while, but the beating is on parts
> you might well be removing.The actually running gear and frame will be ok,
> but the body and floorboards will be shot.
> I think that one thing that most people don't contemplate is just how much
> weight they're going to wind up piling on that poor trailer by the time
> you're done.  A little jetski trailer designed to carry a few hundred
> pounds isn't going to hack it.  To a certain extent, you can limit the
> "piling on", by limiting the size of the trailer, and not providing a place
> to put more stuff. (any flat surface is an invitation to lash on just one
> more thing.. like 400 pounds of ice).

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