4wd trailers

Submitted: Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 16:07
ThreadID: 56957 Views:9315 Replies:10 FollowUps:5
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Just about to build a 4wd trailer to carry the additional stuff that comes with a baby. The trailer will be build by a local supplier in Darwin, but I have some questions to the group,
1) I have two options in size. 6ft x 4ft and 7ft x 4ft. What sizes of trailers are most people using?
2) additional options I am getting are 2x gas holders, 2x fuel jerry can holders, inbuilt water tank, additional 120 a/h battery, ability to carry two spare tyres. Anything else needs to be added?
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Reply By: tukka - Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 16:19

Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 16:19
What size wheels are will it have and were will the spare go? Best if it the same as the vehicle then you have a better chance of getting home if you get low on tyres. Does it have a rock shield stop rocks flicking up smashing back window or punching holes in your jerry cans or water tank. What ype of 4wding will you be doing to determine which hitch you need. Will it have a long drawbar, better off road and easier to reverse plus more room for tool box, etc. I would go for 7x4 for more storage room plus if you are going to put a camping tent on it then more room for the family and enables bigger tent to be added.
AnswerID: 300271

Reply By: Member - Duncs - Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 16:23

Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 16:23

Have you considered buying one from a specialist manufacturer.

There are plenty about (although the ones I know of are all in southern states and freight costs could hurt) adn I always find it easier to work out what is a good idea and what is not when looking at a practical application.

If you are adding a battery I wonder if you are starting to look at a camper trailer. When I started looking at towing it seemed to make sense if the trailer made life easier as well as carrying a lot of gear. Even though many camper trailers are really glorified tents they do go up and come down easy. Often allowing all the packing to be done before the weather protection is taken away.

That being said I think you have covered the main considerations for a trailer. Add to them a stone guard/deflector to protect the rear of the towing vehicle, make sure it is engineered and equiped to allow recovery either of it or some other vehicle by attaching tow cables etc to the rear of the trailer and consider a good quallity independant suspension system. Coil springs and shock absorbers offer a better ride for your gear jsut like they do for you.

I would go the 7x4 option for a number of reasons. It is easier to see behind the towing vehicle, it will turn more predictably when reversing and it gives more carrying capacity.

Happy shopping
AnswerID: 300272

Reply By: Longreach - Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 17:56

Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 17:56
Its worth thinking about the tradeoff between a water tank and jerry cans. I like using jerrys because if you leave home with good water, when you need to top up you can refill a jerry and if the water quality isn't as good as your home water, you dont have to contaminate the lot. Yes you could wait till you get to a better supply but that may not always be an option. Sometimes we keep the best water for drinking and use the others for washing etc.
My Trak Shak has capacity for 9 Jerry cans on the sides (3 in each coner, and the gas is on the other corner). If you had fuel in 2 jerrys, that leaves 7 for water which is just as much as a lot of tanks.
AnswerID: 300281

Follow Up By: mowing - Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 19:57

Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 19:57
Not to mention that if you damage a water tank, the whole lot is gone. If you use jerry cans and one gets damaged or even three, you have a back up supply. Same applies to long range tanks I guess!


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Reply By: llamaboy - Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 20:55

Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 20:55
Thank you to everyone who has replied, lots of good ideas.
Yes the wheels will be the same as on the prado. I did not ask for a rock shield stop rocks flicking up smashing back window or punching holes in your jerry cans, very good point. I will also confirm about the long drawbar and recovery points at either end of the trailers.

I did consider about getting a trailer from down south but the shipping cost were too much. This does not mean that is not an option, but it would need to be a bloody good trailer. As to the independent suspension this does not seem to be an option by this manufacturer.

The water tank discussion is worth thinking about. Our reserves is 60l we carry in the prado, but the jerry cans might be the best option.

If someone does know of a good 4wd trailer manufactures can you please advise, these can be from down south.

Thanks very much to all
AnswerID: 300311

Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 21:39

Thursday, Apr 24, 2008 at 21:39
Try to have the wheel track the same as your Prado, so the trailer wheels follow the vehicle's.

Treg Trailers are trailer manufacturers here in Adelaide. The trailer I used to take bush was a 1960 model and never had a problem. But it was built strong - had long 8 leaf springs, a 2.5 Ton axle and huge chev bearings. But they do cost a few $$

I made a rack for mine. In the tray went a large box for the food, a row of 7 water jerries, then a large box at the back for camping gear. On the rack went the big tents and the odd tyre casing, covered by an old ute tonneau cover. Both spare tyres were bolted underneath. I designed it all before camper trailers were commonplace.

We towed it behind an FJ55 and then a Troopie. The troopie was 11 seater and had a roofrack, so we could take an extra family away with us :-))

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Reply By: Member - Lindsay- Friday, Apr 25, 2008 at 07:37

Friday, Apr 25, 2008 at 07:37
This is my trailer I had custom built to my specs for an 8000 km trip of which 4000 km was on desert tracks. I spared no expense and only ended up with a bill of $4,000 plus expensive NSW rego.

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The specs are :
-tare weight 520kg with 2 spares and 2 batteries
ATM 2000 kg so payload is 1480 kg
-full hot dip galv (I live 500 meters from the ocean)
-8 x 4 ft x 2.5 ft deep with almost air tight tonneau cover
-full chassis under box
-7ft drawbar that runs back to suspension (with web gusset below and additional strut in centre)
-treg hitch
-spare spring pack bolted under box
-provision for future boat rack
-2 tonne axel with large parallel bearings
-12" electric brakes
-bushed shackle leaf spring suspension
-2 x 80 amp hour batteries in box (identical to the 2 in my cruiser) with 2 x 12 volt outlets and anderson plug connection to cruiser
-4 identical sized rims and tyres as my cruiser (BFG mud terrains that can be swapped with the BFG all terrains on the cruiser if extra traction is required)
-wire cage in font of box for firewood and rubbish (battery box is on left)
-14 jerry can storage on sides- on one stage this trip required fuel for 1300km and water for 3 people for 10 days

This trailer tows beautifully and performed excetionally well crossing territory usually reserved for vehicles without trailers.
The only problem we had in 8000 km was with some broken cable ties on the lights!

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AnswerID: 300361

Follow Up By: llamaboy - Friday, Apr 25, 2008 at 13:30

Friday, Apr 25, 2008 at 13:30
Lindsay, thats what I call a trailer!
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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Friday, Apr 25, 2008 at 16:35

Friday, Apr 25, 2008 at 16:35
Yep, really nicely done.
About $36,000 cheaper than a flash camper trailer!
FollowupID: 566598

Reply By: Barry 2 - Friday, Apr 25, 2008 at 23:36

Friday, Apr 25, 2008 at 23:36
Hi llamaboy
I built a off road 7x4 box trailer 5yrs ago that has now done well over 50,000ks all off road from cape york x 3, gulf of Carp,high country Vic,
as well as home duties. The design is almost identical to Lindsays post
It is the way to go, the only comment I have is there are times when I wish the toneau cover was longer on the sides to allow for those occasions when you have higher than normal objects to take.In my case I use it to take a Tinny away at times and the jerry cans stick up higher than the sides of the trailer,the original cover was made to fit neat, looks good but an over sight as it turned out.
The only other thing I seriously subscribe to is the "KISS" principle it hasn't failed me yet !!
Good luck, Safe Travels
AnswerID: 300514

Reply By: Top End Explorer Tours - Saturday, Apr 26, 2008 at 00:04

Saturday, Apr 26, 2008 at 00:04
I have 2 trailers for sale, they are trailers I used for extended tours, so are fitted with tub racks table slides luggage area, etc.

One is more suited to a 100 series with 1400 kg springs a 1 tonne axle, and 5 stud Toyota rims and is 7x4, the other is higher and more suited to a Troopy with 1400 kg springs and a 2 tonne rated axle, with 6 stud Toyota rims and is 6x4, both have a roof rack and the latter carries 4 Gerry cans the latter is in need of some minor work to tidy it up,. both are registered and road worthy.

I want $2500 each. If you are interested click on my Advertiser sign and ring me, I live in Jabiru, no obligation.

Cheers Steve.
AnswerID: 300516

Follow Up By: Top End Explorer Tours - Saturday, Apr 26, 2008 at 00:07

Saturday, Apr 26, 2008 at 00:07
The latter also has a swing down stainless steel table on the back.

Cheers Steve.
FollowupID: 566658

Reply By: Vivid Adventures - Saturday, Apr 26, 2008 at 14:58

Saturday, Apr 26, 2008 at 14:58
Hi there Llamaboy,

I have just got back from the Great Victoria Desert with my approx 7x4 trailer which has been custom built for my needs.

I have it for sale (needs change a little) My Trader Ad and you can view a gallery online here: Trailer Gallery Online

It depends on where you go as to what you need for construction - look at my ad to see the sort of considerations made.

AnswerID: 300592

Reply By: llamaboy - Tuesday, Apr 29, 2008 at 22:12

Tuesday, Apr 29, 2008 at 22:12
Sorry for not getting back to the group, long weekend.... and another this weekend can't waste an opportunity like that.

Back to the main game. thanks to all the great ideas and comments, it has been a great deal of help in getting an understanding of what I want.

Steve I am after something new, with select requirements and to match the Prado, but thanks for bringing it to my attention.

Andrew wow I showed your trailer to the CFO (the wife), lets just say the buget was not forthcoming...
AnswerID: 301226

Follow Up By: Vivid Adventures - Tuesday, Apr 29, 2008 at 23:09

Tuesday, Apr 29, 2008 at 23:09
chuckle... perhaps I should get my Minister for War and Finance to speak with your CFO and see what they can work out ;-)
FollowupID: 567305

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