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Author Topic: Off-road log trailer build  (Read 3486 times)

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Offline mjeselskis

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Off-road log trailer build
« on: February 19, 2021, 02:28:26 PM »
I didn't want to hijack the fabrication thread so I figured I'd start a separate one.

I'm building an off-road walking beam log trailer to haul out logs and maybe add a dumbbody to it for moving dirt. The frame rails are 5x5 tubing. The 'deck' is 12ft long.

I was going to use 4x4x3/8 tubing for the walking beams, but the price stopped that. $1650 for a 20ft piece!

I'm going to build it with what I have and upgrade later if needed.

I have some 3x3x3/16 and some 2x4x1/4 that I can use for the walking beams. I don't know which one is stronger given the size differences. Does anyone have an idea which is better suited for the walking beam?



2006 WM LT28  1993 John Deere 5300
Husqvarna 562XP & 365 X-Torq

Offline mudfarmer

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2021, 02:52:01 PM »
I don't have an answer to your question but am interested in the thread.

Based on 12' length and the perceived width it sounds like it will hold about a cord when done? Cord of red oak on FF calc says 5700lbs, cord of beech 4900lbs, cord of white pine 3200lbs, would size for the heavyweights if you can.

There is a guy online that makes and sells walking beam ATV trailers, here are his specs for about half the size of yours:

Quote
  • walking beams (tandem axle): 1 " x 3 x 3/16" HSS with closed, beveled ends, painted steel frame
  • axles: 1-1/2" cold rolled round bar inside 1 " sch 80 pipe, fitted with a grease nipple
  • box measures 24" wide at the base and 48" wide at the top
  • box sides are 24" high
  • box length: 6'-"0 long
Looking forward to seeing it progress!

Offline mjeselskis

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2021, 06:42:23 PM »
I don't have an answer to your question but am interested in the thread.

Based on 12' length and the perceived width it sounds like it will hold about a cord when done? Cord of red oak on FF calc says 5700lbs, cord of beech 4900lbs, cord of white pine 3200lbs, would size for the heavyweights if you can.

There is a guy online that makes and sells walking beam ATV trailers, here are his specs for about half the size of yours:

Quote
  • walking beams (tandem axle): 1 " x 3 x 3/16" HSS with closed, beveled ends, painted steel frame
  • axles: 1-1/2" cold rolled round bar inside 1 " sch 80 pipe, fitted with a grease nipple
  • box measures 24" wide at the base and 48" wide at the top
  • box sides are 24" high
  • box length: 6'-"0 long
Looking forward to seeing it progress!
I think a cord is a good goal for it. I'll primarily use it for saw logs over firewood. I think the heaviest load could be if I end up putting a dump body on it and loading it with dirt. 
Structural engineering isn't my area of expertise, so usually I just err on the heavy side, but I think I did the math right on these.
I calculated the area and moment of inertia for the two sizes I have and it looks like the 2x4x1/4 has a slightly bigger area (2.75 vs 2.1 sq in) and a significantly better moment of inertia (5.3 vs 2.79).  It looks like I'll go with the 2x4 for the walking beams. I'm going to build the hangers so I can swap out to up to 4 in wide square tubing in the future if needed and just use a bushing to fill in the space with the 2" tubing.
2006 WM LT28  1993 John Deere 5300
Husqvarna 562XP & 365 X-Torq

Offline Ed_K

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2021, 06:35:59 AM »
 The 12' long is a good idea as you'll be able to get 16' on without them sliding off the back when you go thru a dip. My trailer is 8' and ground clearance is about 14" so I have to load the bottom with 8s then put 10s 12s on and 8s on top to hold everything down. If I have 16's I have to get an use the hay wagon trailer.

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2021, 11:47:16 AM »
Definitely need the first courses to be short wood.  I had a long one empty the entire trailer in a dip once.  That was aggravating. 
Revelation 3:20

Offline Walnut Beast

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2021, 01:04:20 PM »
I didn't want to hijack the fabrication thread so I figured I'd start a separate one.

I'm building an off-road walking beam log trailer to haul out logs and maybe add a dumbbody to it for moving dirt. The frame rails are 5x5 tubing. The 'deck' is 12ft long.

I was going to use 4x4x3/8 tubing for the walking beams, but the price stopped that. $1650 for a 20ft piece!

I'm going to build it with what I have and upgrade later if needed.

I have some 3x3x3/16 and some 2x4x1/4 that I can use for the walking beams. I don't know which one is stronger given the size differences. Does anyone have an idea which is better suited for the walking beam?


(Image hidden from quote, click to view.)

Looking good. Nice use of the high lift jack with the top piece folded down. That does sound crazy for the new steel 

Offline John Mc

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2021, 03:37:33 PM »
Definitely need the first courses to be short wood. I had a long one empty the entire trailer in a dip once. That was aggravating.
 

We call that automatic unloading... and I meant to do that... yeah that's it... this was just the spot I wanted to unload the trailer.
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Offline mjeselskis

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2021, 03:50:03 PM »
I got the walking beams done except for the center pivot today. 



2006 WM LT28  1993 John Deere 5300
Husqvarna 562XP & 365 X-Torq

Offline dgdrls

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #8 on: February 20, 2021, 06:39:55 PM »
Looking good :)

 where are you thinking for axle placement % fore/aft?
And what about a tongue length?

D


Offline mjeselskis

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2021, 07:05:50 PM »
Looking good :)

 where are you thinking for axle placement % fore/aft?
And what about a tongue length?

D
Thanks.

I'm not sure where to put the axle. I'm leaning towards putting it about 4ft in from the back which is 1/3 of the deck. I don't know if there's a good way to figure out the best placement. If I put a log loader on it someday, that will end up with more weight on the tractor end, but without a loader, I don't want to end up light on tongue weight if I'm hauling long logs.  Any recommendations?


I'm thinking around 5-6ft for the tongue. I want it long enough that the tongue hits the back tire only if I jackknife it (intentionally or otherwise...)
2006 WM LT28  1993 John Deere 5300
Husqvarna 562XP & 365 X-Torq

Offline thecfarm

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #10 on: February 20, 2021, 09:13:15 PM »
I better post so I can follow the build!!!!
Model 6020-20hp Manual Thomas bandsaw,TC40A 4wd 40 hp New Holland tractor, 450 Norse Winch, Heatmor 400 OWB,YCC 1978-79

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2021, 10:10:00 PM »
No matter where you put the axle youll wish it was someplace else every now and then. 


I suggest you measure your tow vehicles distance from steer axle to hitch ball and then make your trailers axle about that far behind the hitch.  This will give a pretty neutral steering ratio.  The hitch pivot point is roughly half way and the trailer will stay pretty well in the same lane as the tractor.  

I have a trailer that gets used behind a quad, a mid size tractor and a fairly long wheelbase 2ton crewcab.  The extremes feel ugly but the tractor is sorta equal and feels the best.  You almost dont have to look back at clearance when the hitch is centered because it follows nearly as well as an articulated chassis.  Granted the distance from hitch to rear axle has an effect.  The shorter the stinger the more youll have jackknife interference.  But the longer it is the more youll wheelie.  


Dont make a headache rack until youve tried it a lot, and when you do, make it moveable because the loader will change the balance point for the wood pile quite a bit.  I have to pile wood over and forward of the rack on mine to get the balance right. My headache rack is in the wrong place.  
Revelation 3:20

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #12 on: February 20, 2021, 10:11:10 PM »
Well.. A lot of that is me being lazy and piling 18ft pieces on that i shoulda cut in two. But youll learn fast once you get out in the woods. 
Revelation 3:20

Offline Walnut Beast

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #13 on: February 20, 2021, 10:30:59 PM »
Looking good :)

 where are you thinking for axle placement % fore/aft?
And what about a tongue length?

D
Thanks.

I'm not sure where to put the axle. I'm leaning towards putting it about 4ft in from the back which is 1/3 of the deck. I don't know if there's a good way to figure out the best placement. If I put a log loader on it someday, that will end up with more weight on the tractor end, but without a loader, I don't want to end up light on tongue weight if I'm hauling long logs.  Any recommendations?


I'm thinking around 5-6ft for the tongue. I want it long enough that the tongue hits the back tire only if I jackknife it (intentionally or otherwise...)
Just look and Im sure you have where the others place them. Looking good

Offline axeman2021

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #14 on: February 21, 2021, 10:40:21 AM »
I got the walking beams done except for the center pivot today.


(Image hidden from quote, click to view.)

I really like the quality of your work i noticed you added the extra gussets for bracing the axels, a small item maybe to some but it adds strength for side loading when needed.

Offline Stephen Alford

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #15 on: February 21, 2021, 12:01:04 PM »
Nice job. We built the trailer with a swivel pintle hitch so if the trailer rolls over the tractor does not . The axel on the walking beam was a tad forward so it would climb over a stump better.
logon

Offline mjeselskis

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #16 on: February 21, 2021, 12:18:29 PM »
I got the walking beams done except for the center pivot today.


(Image hidden from quote, click to view.)

I really like the quality of your work i noticed you added the extra gussets for bracing the axels, a small item maybe to some but it adds strength for side loading when needed.
Thanks, the axles are not as beefy as I'd like if I were buying new, but they were free, so they'll work. I've learned that a few small gussets can make a big difference on the strength of a joint. It just takes some extra fab and welding time.

Nice job. We built the trailer with a swivel pintle hitch so if the trailer rolls over the tractor does not . The axel on the walking beam was a tad forward so it would climb over a stump better.

I think I'm either going to use a swivel on the hitch or just make it with a 2 5/16 ball hitch so it can pivot. Using a ball hitch will also make it easier to move with a truck if needed. I'm assuming if the trailer flips, the ball will pivot enough to not flip the tractor.

Are you saying that the pivot point on the walking beam on your trailer is forward of the center? 

2006 WM LT28  1993 John Deere 5300
Husqvarna 562XP & 365 X-Torq

Offline Stephen Alford

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #17 on: February 21, 2021, 02:46:00 PM »
Yes...that was 25 years ago. Just searching the net and do not find many examples of that concept. Helps going ahead but works against you if you have to back up a lot.  Trailers worked well for our old field white spruce sites. My focus was on hardwood thinnings.
  The trailer in our hardwood sites did not work well. Went to winch and grapple options on the tractor. The trailer is used on the landing and now has 7000 lb torflex axle and in the process of getting a VIN number. The purpose is just to move from site to site for sorting and loading.
   As a side note the fold out legs worked better in the woods than the ones that scoped you were able to put them out to reduce tipping and worked good on rough terrain.

logon

Offline Hilltop366

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #18 on: February 21, 2021, 04:59:03 PM »
I'm not sure where to put the axle. I'm leaning towards putting it about 4ft in from the back which is 1/3 of the deck. I don't know if there's a good way to figure out the best placement. If I put a log loader on it someday, that will end up with more weight on the tractor end, but without a loader, I don't want to end up light on tongue weight if I'm hauling long logs.  Any recommendations?


Bolt it on? Then you can move it easier if you add a loader.

Is your centre pivot going to be above the walking beam?

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Off-road log trailer build
« Reply #19 on: February 21, 2021, 06:00:27 PM »
Definitely have the walking beam pivot mount over the beam and be generous in height there or you will have to use 6 or 8x more metal to make the stakes have a high step in order for the walking beam to clear the wood.  On a single axle trailer you can have like 4 inches of tire clearance between logs and rubber but on a walking beam you need a foot or so or else every stump you climb the tire will be popping logs up or skidding over the log.
Revelation 3:20


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