Power Trailer Dolly - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-03-2013, 01:57 PM   #1
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Name: Ian
Trailer: 1974 Boler 1300 - 2014 Escape 19'
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Power Trailer Dolly

I like the idea of being able to maneuver the trailer into any position at a campsite, this was easy with the Boler and a hand dolly, but with the recent purchase of a Casita the hand dolly will not work. To add to this we have both trailers parking in one long stall, if we want to take the trailer parked at the rear it becomes a real chore to hook-up and disconnect each trailer a number of times...

This is what I came up with, power comes from a 2000lb ATV winch, I machined the spool to accept a hub sprocket. Each tire is pneumatic, 8" swivel and 11" drive wheels each with a capacity of 350lbs.

I still have the handle and coupling to install but this gives a good idea of the design. Power will come either from the trailer battery by plugging into the trailer plug or direct from the vehicle battery through an extension and alligator clips.

Some of the parts used, a couple of discarded stainless steel chair frames, tire, sprocket ...


Machining the spool to accept the sprocket hub


Partly assembled


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Old 03-03-2013, 02:02 PM   #2
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Looks great hope it works for you.
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Old 03-03-2013, 02:08 PM   #3
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Great work.
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Old 03-03-2013, 02:17 PM   #4
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Trailer: 2012 Escape 19' /2010 Honda Pilot 4WD TV
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Ian,

Your design looks great but be careful how you use it. If you plan to mount a ball on top to move the trailer from the tongue receiver it will be dangerous to use because the three support wheels are so close together. If it falls over while moving!!! Most commercial designs use a receiver with a straight bore hole mounted on the trailer and then a post to engage into it from the bottom. This keeps is from tipping.

I have a commercial model called an AC5 made by PowerMovers to move my 3700lb trailer.



Check out how these are built to get some more ideas. Anyway, really nice job!

Steve
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Old 03-03-2013, 02:34 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotfishtacos View Post
Ian,

Your design looks great but be careful how you use it. If you plan to mount a ball on top to move the trailer from the tongue receiver it will be dangerous to use because the three support wheels are so close together. If it falls over while moving!!! Most commercial designs use a receiver with a straight bore hole mounted on the trailer and then a post to engage into it from the bottom. This keeps is from tipping.
Steve
Thanks Steve

My plans are similar to your unit, on the Casita I was pinning the dolly to the tongue jack through a straight bore and clevis pin, but I like the design of your's which would be very simple to make for my unit.

Testing (once the snow melts) will determine the stability & traction, but it is easy to extend the width of the back plate and also add additional drive wheels if required. This initial version is to determine functionality and keep it as light as possible.
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Old 03-03-2013, 03:54 PM   #6
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Great minds think alike and all that.

I've also machined the cable drum to take a sprocket hub. My thought is that I'll power up my existing manual dolly with it to see how much "grunt" it has. If it seems OK in the power dept. I'll go a similar route as I don't think a one wheel drive would work too well on grass etc. We'll see.

I'm trying to build mine with one hand in a cast. Makes me appreciate having two hands.
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Old 03-03-2013, 04:50 PM   #7
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Yes either greats minds or fools
I considered modifying my hand dolly but the tongue weight of a Casita is considerable so I decided on the 3 wheel version.
Looks like you bought the same winch as I did
Princess Auto had them on sale for $49
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Old 03-06-2013, 06:23 AM   #8
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Ian, have you seen Jack's 12 volt Power Dolly Build 12 volt supplied by Casita battery It's on the CasitaForum and you have to be a member to view.
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Old 03-06-2013, 06:32 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
Ian, have you seen Jack's 12 volt Power Dolly Build 12 volt supplied by Casita battery It's on the CasitaForum and you have to be a member to view.
Hi Donna
Yes I looked very closely at Jack's and several other builds on the Casita forum.
I changed the design some with one consideration in mind; I didn't want to "balance" the trailer on 2 wheels while simultaneously steering. I currently have a store bought manual tongue dolly and because of my rather small stature it can be challenging to handle. I also wanted large wheels all around to tackle rough terrain. Looking forward to finishing it and giving it a test drive
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Old 03-06-2013, 07:16 PM   #10
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Well Ian, my job is complete then I just wanted to point out Jack's build for your consideration. Sounds like you've come up with something that will work for you!
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Old 03-06-2013, 08:58 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
Well Ian, my job is complete then I just wanted to point out Jack's build for your consideration. Sounds like you've come up with something that will work for you!
Thanks Donna

I hope it works, the theory is there next the testing. Trouble is we just got a foot of snow on Sunday and it is snowing again today ... may be a while before I am able to test unless I buy a snow tire or chains for the dolly.
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