Smart car trailer/ Caravan chassis

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by Humsafer, Feb 14, 2016.

  1. Humsafer

    Humsafer Funster

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2015
    Messages:
    167
    Likes Received:
    157
    Location:
    Lincoln
    I haven't seen many (any) A frames this trip down through France/Spain, just about everyone towing their cars on small trailers. Beginning to look like the days of the A frame are numbered except in UK.
    Has anyone any thoughts or experience of converting a caravan chassis to a trailer. Is it legal and possible. Are there any savings to be made.

    cheers Humsafer
     
  2. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2007
    Messages:
    29,447
    Likes Received:
    16,876
    Location:
    YO11 2BD
    Very little strength in a caravan chassis....they rely more on the bodywork 'box' to make them rigid.
    You would need to weld in quite a few outriggers for floor support.

    And on the legal side, home built trailers are no longer legal.
    Trailers must now be approved and vin plated.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. Humsafer

    Humsafer Funster

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2015
    Messages:
    167
    Likes Received:
    157
    Location:
    Lincoln
    Thought because It was already vin plated it might be legal. There are lots of chassis on e bay sold ready for conversion.
     
  4. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2007
    Messages:
    29,447
    Likes Received:
    16,876
    Location:
    YO11 2BD
    Agreed, it is already plated.
    I was refering to a 'start from scratch' trailer....sorry for the confusion.

    Dont know your budget but there is a current thread selling a Brian James car trailer.....£1500
     
  5. maxi77

    maxi77 Funster

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2013
    Messages:
    247
    Likes Received:
    133
    Location:
    Kingdom of Fife
    First there is a scheme for approving home build trailers so a home build is practical. Next how heavy is your car, the max weight for most single axle caravans is around 1.5 tonnes, so take the weight of the car and take that away from 1.5 and that is what you have left for your chassis remembering all the car carrying part will need to be added to the caravan chassis which is just an A frame, and two longitudinal beams resting on the axis
     
  6. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2007
    Messages:
    29,447
    Likes Received:
    16,876
    Location:
    YO11 2BD
    I never heard of that....do you have a link ?

    I dont see how it can be possible as they have no way of knowing the quality/grade of steel used or the proficiency of the welder.
    I can weld and make metal stick together....but i wouldnt trust carrying a load on the weld.
     
  7. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2007
    Messages:
    29,447
    Likes Received:
    16,876
    Location:
    YO11 2BD
    Found it.....the IVA scheme which is undertaken by VOSA and includes, among other criteria.....

    Really not worth jumping through all the hoops and paying out for what may be a failure.
     
  8. tonyidle

    tonyidle Funster

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2013
    Messages:
    2,866
    Likes Received:
    2,684
    Location:
    Kendal, Cumbria
    I think the key word there is "retailing". And regardless of the possible requirement who is to say how old a home built trailer is? I've built three - long before any legislation (if such exists now). They make brilliant trailers although for convenience it's often necessary to narrow them - complex in itself.
     
  9. Humsafer

    Humsafer Funster

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2015
    Messages:
    167
    Likes Received:
    157
    Location:
    Lincoln
    Hadn't thought about reducing the width. Hm ! that does confuse the issue
     
  10. gus-lopez

    gus-lopez Funster

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2014
    Messages:
    4,347
    Likes Received:
    7,914
    Location:
    Lorca,Murcia,Spain
    No as soon as you modify it it then comes under the new post 28th October 2012 rules requiring testing.

    The way it is written you have to prove it was made before the Oct 2012 date , they don't have to prove it wasn't.
     
  11. Humsafer

    Humsafer Funster

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2015
    Messages:
    167
    Likes Received:
    157
    Location:
    Lincoln
    Well that's that then, better start saving up for a proper job!!
    Thanks everyone
     
  12. Peter A Forbes

    Peter A Forbes Funster

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2014
    Messages:
    259
    Likes Received:
    182
    Location:
    Rushden, Northants, UK
    As far as I know (and I have been through the regulations, which were published around the time we built our big trailer) there are no requirements to have a pre-Oct 2012 trailer tested if it is modified.

    We modified and updated our 1990's built 4-wheel trailer and it is in regular use.

    The regulations are intended for manufacturers rather than home-built trailers, but the regulations do encompass NEW home-built trailers.

    We have provenance to prove that our trailers were built pre-2012.

    Peter
     
  13. Minxy Girl

    Minxy Girl Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    Messages:
    8,491
    Likes Received:
    9,843
    Location:
    E Yorks
    We did this many years ago, we bought a caravan trailer locally and had it converted (shortened/strengthened) so that we could put our Bond Minicar on it - it worked a treat and was a lot cheaper than having to buy a standard manufactured one. This is the only photo I can find of it.

    trailer - r.jpg
     
  14. Minxy Girl

    Minxy Girl Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    Messages:
    8,491
    Likes Received:
    9,843
    Location:
    E Yorks
  15. Geo

    Geo Trader - Funster

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2007
    Messages:
    9,506
    Likes Received:
    5,557
    Location:
    Mansfield,Notts
    His prices made me go "TILT":LOL:
     
  16. Wicketter

    Wicketter Funster

    Joined:
    May 30, 2012
    Messages:
    184
    Likes Received:
    128
    Location:
    Bristol
    We had a tilting trailer that also folded up, we used to tow a buggy. Well engineered trailer but very heavy to move, I could see a broken shin bone coming on! We replaced it with a lighter smart car trailer and changed the buggy for a smart which was fine and more practical, but we honestly found the whole van and trailer idea too much. Happy now with a smaller PVC IH conversion. We don't miss the bigger van and the car at all, although we did have fun with it! I was always very nervous when we loaded the Smart especially if the weather was bad and for us it was always a chore to unload after the holiday was over. Hope you find what you are looking for!

    IMG_1450.JPG
     
  17. Dill

    Dill Funster

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2010
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    50
    Location:
    Wakefield
    I don't think they are expensive at all.
     
  18. Traveller_HA5_3DOM

    Traveller_HA5_3DOM Read Only Funster

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Messages:
    428
    Likes Received:
    325
    Location:
    Following the Sun
    Something like this they do say is safer than an A Frame, but I have my doubts!!
     

    Attached Files:

  19. Minxy Girl

    Minxy Girl Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    Messages:
    8,491
    Likes Received:
    9,843
    Location:
    E Yorks
    The whole set up was out of balance, centre of gravity way too high.
     
  20. Traveller_HA5_3DOM

    Traveller_HA5_3DOM Read Only Funster

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Messages:
    428
    Likes Received:
    325
    Location:
    Following the Sun
    Yes realise that but this is what is considered to be the legal way to move your car.
    I don't think you will ever see an A Frame towed vehicle rolled over onto it's roof.
     
Loading...

Share This Page