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  1. #1
    Baja
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    Overland trailer build

    So this weekend I picked up what will be the start of an overlanding/camping trailer to pull behind my H3. With myself, my wife, and three growing daughters (currently one is 10, the other two, twins, are 7), camping has turned into an ordeal with barely fitting everything in/on the H3, even with a hitch cargo rack in addition to my roof rack. Plus it's a pain having to spend a couple hours getting everything loaded up whenever we want to go camping, so we tend to not go very often. My goal is to build an overlanding/camping trailer that we can leave packed with the majority of our gear so then all we should need to do is get clothes packed, throw food in the fridge, hook up and head out.

    Here's how it sits right now. It's a M101A1 (I think, no build plates on it that I can find), I picked it up for $250.








    As you can see it's not the prettiest thing ever, and frankly it's worse than it looks as far as the tub goes. Lots of rust through at the bottoms of the stake pockets, the tailgate is pretty messed up (seriously, I have only a vague idea how they could have bent everything in at least three different directions), the floor is pretty dented and is rusted through in a few spots on one of the bottom supports, The rear tub uprights were cut through for the taillights, the tires need replacing, the wiring for the lights is half missing (the middle half for some reason, the lights have wiring and the trailer connector to hook to the vehicle is there, but nothing in between that) and the eye bolts for the A-arm are missing.










    But, all that being said (plus some unsaid things), the positives are that it's already had the axle replaced (and has electric brakes, not sure if they actually work though, but still), the bolt pattern matches the H3 wheels, the frame is in really good shape other than some surface rust, and I got it for cheap. Really, for $250 the frame alone is worth that to me. I considered building my own frame and everything from scratch, but it's so much simpler and less risky to use a good solid frame already made for me.

    As far as the tub goes, I will probably repair it enough to use in the meantime as a regular trailer (we're going to be moving this summer so it will help with getting some stuff up to my wife's parents who live near where we will be moving to) and for camping possibly. But the reality is that I will probably end up scrapping the tub unless I find the repairs are going better than anticipated. Really the tub seems to be pretty darn heavy, so replacing it will be a better option anyway since then I can make it a bit lighter and tailor it to my needs and wants. I'm not going to war with it. Hopefully...

    The axle seems to be in good shape overall, I had the seller pull the bearing caps off and the grease looked and smelled fine, though one side had some play in it, but that looked like it just needs the axle nut tightened properly. There are not any shocks on it currently, and there is nothing for the bottom shock mounts on the axle unfortunately, but that's not hard or expensive to fix. The upper shock mounts look fine.

    As for the missing eyebolts for the A-arm, the eyebolts used for the tailgate hinges are the same, and since the two inner hinges aren't even in use right now (because it's so bent up they don't align anymore) I'm going to pull those off and use them for the A-arm to get that bolted back into place, instead of the lame bit of wire that's holding it in place right now...

    The trailer pulls well though, I didn't notice any issues with tracking, and backing it up wasn't too bad, especially considering I rarely ever pull a trailer. I think this will make a great foundation for an overland/camping trailer. Be forewarned though, it's probably going to take me a couple years before it really becomes anything since I'll only be doing modifications as I have time and cash, but I'll make updates as I go.
    2008 H3 Alpha
    2008 Victory Red H3

    "Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils." - General John Stark

    N1JPA

  2. #2
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    Cool, nice score. I'm looking forward to the photos of your progress...
    10 T

  3. #3
    Super Swamper
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    Looks like a good place to start!


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    2009 Hummer H3T Alpha
    4 Rancho Lift, 37x12.5x17 BFG A/Ts, Method "The Standard" rims, Magnuson Supercharger, Magnaflow exhaust, 40" LED light bar, 9'' round LED spot lights, SnugTop, Thor Parts bumper w/ swing out for full sized spare, Hidden 9,500 lb Superwinch, Custom Sliders, UCP w/ Thor Parts skids, Custom bed cage

    www.ministryofadventure.ca

  4. #4
    All Terrain
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    That's on my to do list too. I need a good off-road trailer for camping.

  5. #5
    Hamster that pokes Bears
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    When u have off-road trailer for camping its still takes a long ass time to load/unload. With daughters u do ~99.9% yourself. And believe me with trailer u get a lot more stuff.
    This is mine


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    2009 H3t (Hamster Jr.)build - http://www.hummer4x4offroad.com/foru...009-H3t)-build
    2009 H3t Alpha
    HMBP (2000 GMC) build (sold) - http://www.hummer4x4offroad.com/foru...s-quot-project
    2008 F350 (Behimot) build - http://www.hummer4x4offroad.com/forum/showthread.php?2208-Project-quot-Behemoth-quot
    1995 YJ locked and loaded
    2017 JK "Spicy chicken" + personal touches.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mb30sdl View Post
    When u have off-road trailer for camping its still takes a long ass time to load/unload. With daughters u do ~99.9% yourself. And believe me with trailer u get a lot more stuff.
    This is mine


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    Nice rig !


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  7. #7
    All Terrain
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    Very nice trailer.

  8. #8
    Super Swamper
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    nice
    This too shall pass
    on a tow truck

  9. #9
    Baja
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    I pulled the wheels off tonight so that I can take them somewhere to get new tires put on. I'm just going to get some decent used tires to put on it for now most likely, right now I just want to get the trailer road worthy and useable.


    Looks like my plan for eventually upgrading the brakes to have a parking brake feature will become a necessity, I pulled one drum off tonight to inspect everything and the brakes are completely shot. How shot are they, you ask? Well, when I pulled the drum off one of the shoes pad fell onto the ground...


    The pad material had completely separated from the backing. In addition to that, the electromagnet is completely missing for some reason, and the whole unit is heavily rusted. I didn't pull the drum on the other side yet, but I'm guessing it's about the same condition. The spindle and bearings look to be in fine shape though, so that's good. I'm going to check though to see if it will be more worthwhile to just get a whole new axle though, since while the one under there right now is fine, it certainly would make me feel better to have a whole new unit, seeing how the current one was cut and re-welded to shorten it, and the perches aren't fully welded like I'd prefer them to be. I'm going to need all new brake assemblies which are about $200 for the pair, and probably new drums as well I'm betting, so adding a new axle probably won't be much more.
    2008 H3 Alpha
    2008 Victory Red H3

    "Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils." - General John Stark

    N1JPA

  10. #10
    Baja
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    Took a couple pictures of the bed to show how it looks after pulling out the dumb plywood and dirt and junk that was in it before. Turned out the floor has started to rot away at one of the crossmembers.








    Just more reasons to scrap the tub and build a new one.


    I am happy though with my replacement tires. The old ones not only were rotting away and probably would burst if I tried to actually put any additional weight on them, but they were even close to the same size as each other. On Thursday I went to find some used tires to put on it for now until I need to replace the tires on my H3. The first place I stopped at had some that were the same size as the ones on the H3 (286-75R16) but weren't really what I was looking for. The guy suggested I check out their other location here in Salt Lake since that was the main one. I decided to take the chance and drover over and asked them what they had in my size. They had two, and when they rolled them out for me to check them out I discovered that they just happened to be the exact same tires I have on the H3 (Goodyear Duratrac's in 285-75R16)!!! I was ecstatic to find them, and for $120 plus tax out the door for the pair it was right around the price I was willing to pay.


    So now the tires on the trailer match the tires on the H3 exactly, albeit more worn down.


    Today I pulled the drums and tore off all the moving (well, at one point they moved anyway) parts for the brakes so that they won't cause any problems until I can replace them, and repacked the bearings and put new seals on, and then put the wheels back on.








    2008 H3 Alpha
    2008 Victory Red H3

    "Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils." - General John Stark

    N1JPA

  11. #11
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    The axle is in fine shape overall, spindles look good and everything. However, I priced out a whole new 6000 Lb axle with electric brakes and the parking brake option and it'll only cost me just under $400, so I'll probably just replace the whole thing and have better peace of mind. This might be happening sooner rather than later, since originally I was going to be moving from the Salt Lake area up to northern Utah this summer, but my coworker just quit and is going to another company which is leaving my company concerned about coverage (I'm a Linux sysadmin, and there was only two of us at the company, and anyone we probably will not be as experienced as my coworker or myself are) so they've made me a pretty decent offer to stay down here one more year. It'd give me some good funds to get the trailer a bit further along than I was originally planning. We'll see if I accept their offer or not.
    2008 H3 Alpha
    2008 Victory Red H3

    "Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils." - General John Stark

    N1JPA

  12. #12
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    Overland trailer build

    Quote Originally Posted by JPaul View Post
    I pulled the wheels off tonight so that I can take them somewhere to get new tires put on. I'm just going to get some decent used tires to put on it for now most likely, right now I just want to get the trailer road worthy and useable.


    Looks like my plan for eventually upgrading the brakes to have a parking brake feature will become a necessity, I pulled one drum off tonight to inspect everything and the brakes are completely shot. How shot are they, you ask? Well, when I pulled the drum off one of the shoes pad fell onto the ground...


    The pad material had completely separated from the backing. In addition to that, the electromagnet is completely missing for some reason, and the whole unit is heavily rusted. I didn't pull the drum on the other side yet, but I'm guessing it's about the same condition. The spindle and bearings look to be in fine shape though, so that's good. I'm going to check though to see if it will be more worthwhile to just get a whole new axle though, since while the one under there right now is fine, it certainly would make me feel better to have a whole new unit, seeing how the current one was cut and re-welded to shorten it, and the perches aren't fully welded like I'd prefer them to be. I'm going to need all new brake assemblies which are about $200 for the pair, and probably new drums as well I'm betting, so adding a new axle probably won't be much more.
    Where are you located ? If youd be interested in selling the old axle I may be interested. I also have a overland trailer build in my future and would love to be running a matching wheel/tire combo with my rig.
    Edit: I see youre in Salt Lake...May be too far

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    Last edited by the_real_hacksaw; 02-06-2018 at 09:22 AM.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_real_hacksaw View Post
    Where are you located ? If you’d be interested in selling the old axle I may be interested. I also have a overland trailer build in my future and would love to be running a matching wheel/tire combo with my rig.
    Edit: I see you’re in Salt Lake...May be too far

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Yep, Salt Lake. Where are you at?

    The current axle is fine, but I wouldn't suggest it for anything more than a dump run trailer in it's current condition, honestly. I replaced the axle seals but the spot they ride is kind of rough and pitted. I sanded it clean and smooth-ish to help them last a while, but they really need sleeves put on them to keep the seals from getting chewed up and grit from getting past them. The way the axle was welded together has it bent down in the middle when it should be bent up (with it currently being used in a spring over configuration). You could just relocate the spring pads to the other side if doing a spring over, or leave it if doing a spring under and just flip the axle. If you fix those issues and put new brakes on it and get the drums turned, it'll be a fine axle. I'm probably going to sell it for $150 as is.

    I'd do all that myself but I want brakes that have the parking brake option which are a fair bit more expensive than regular electric brakes, so at that point it's only a bit more to get a completely new axle.
    2008 H3 Alpha
    2008 Victory Red H3

    "Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils." - General John Stark

    N1JPA

  14. #14
    Baja
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    I took the offer my company gave me, and since then I also picked up the Alpha to replace the red one with (crazy story, short version is a killer deal on the Alpha came up, I was able to swing the extra payment, couple days later I flew to Seattle and picked it up and got it home to Utah). I'm also going to have funds now to get the new axle with the parking brake option, I haven't ordered it yet since it's been so crazy at work trying to do the job of almost three people as well as training the new guy.


    But the Alpha is great, and I'm feeling a lot better now about being able to pull this trailer all over the place once I get it going. I picked up a 7-way cable and distribution box off Amazon as well as some proper wheel chocks to use with it until I can get the new axle and get the parking brakes all hooked up. The existing lighting is in good shape overall, though the wiring needs to be patched back together. I have some ribbon cable to use for that, and it only needs several feet replaced really between where the junction box will be and just before the axle where the existing wiring turns good again. This is all going to be temporary anyway until I have the time and resources to pull the bed off and build a new bed from scratch.
    2008 H3 Alpha
    2008 Victory Red H3

    "Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils." - General John Stark

    N1JPA


 

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