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Halfling

Trailer For Camper AND Trike

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Halfling

OK, this is just a thought. I'm thinking I sell my 12 foot trailer and pick up a 16 footer with dual axles. Create a side entrance up at the front of the utility trailer for loading the Aspen Camper crosswise (make tongue removable). Fasten the Aspen Camper down with the intention of setting the camper up while it is still mounted on trailer (at campsite of course). The bed would extend over the tongue of the utility trailer and the 6X6 changing room would be on the trailer floor. I think this would leave me about 12 feet for loading up the trike.

 

The ultimate goal would be to travel to a particular destination by vehicle with camper and trike in tow on a dual axle trailer and once arriving at a site offload the trike and set camper up. Spend from 3 to 14 days at one site and use the trike to explore and sight see.

 

Am I daft?

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jobe05

Not a bad idea, I have thought the same thing.  In looking however, I have come to the conclusion if I was ever to do that, I would just get an enclosed trailer that would hold the trike, and install a fold away type bed inside the enclosed trailer.  Just less to deal with I would think.  But for me, it will probably never happen that way...........

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Dusty Boots

Sounds good, John

 

The tongue on the Aspen campers are removeable with just 2 bolts/nuts to remove and a zip tire for the wiring harness that needs to be cut/replaced.

You would need help wheeling the camper up the ramp, because you won't be able to do it by yourself and you have to be mindful of the 'basement' on it as well, so you can't lift up on the front of the tongue very far, or the back of the basement will hit/dig in to the ramp!

I usually store my camper for the winter in my 16' cargo trailer/toy hauler, although lately I have been storing it in my 10 x 14 aluminium shed as it's easier to put in there than trying to get it up the 7' of the toy hauler ramp by myself.  

 

 

5a2af0dda11bd_ToyHauler.thumb.jpg.ebece7a95130efa5638627ab2b2a2e7d.jpg

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Halfling

A couple of things concern me with the enclosed trailer (although I'd really like that option), the cost, the weight and the wind resistance. My small 6 cylinder Xterra might not be up to the task. In addition, if I went that route I'd be selling my Aspen and then I'd have no motorcycle camping at all. With the utility trailer option I could have it both ways, tow behind the trike or load it up and tow behind the Xterra.

 

I think my arched ramps might keep the belly from dragging. Also thought of winching it up like a boat. Once it's loaded it would be there for the duration of the trip. I'd probably fasten it down with the jack-stands extended.

 

I want to get this all figured out this winter before we start traveling around the country next season!

 

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Pearl Rider

John I am not in no means throwing off on your ride but I would suggest you do some research on your tow vehicle.   You do not have the running ,gear.transmission or suspension for towing something that long and heavy in my mechanical experience.   What your wanting to do sounds like a great idea though 

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Halfling
32 minutes ago, Pearl Rider said:

John I am not in no means throwing off on your ride but I would suggest you do some research on your tow vehicle.   You do not have the running ,gear.transmission or suspension for towing something that long and heavy in my mechanical experience.   What your wanting to do sounds like a great idea though 

You are probably right Alan and I really should check out the specifics of the Xterra. At the best it would probably be at the maximum end of it's range but I don't know for sure. Good point!

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Pearl Rider

dave0430 can probably give you more details if i remember correctly from talking with him he used to work at a dealership  i would hate for you to get everything set up and be on a trip and the transmission give up on you

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Halfling

I did some checking (limited) for the towing capacity of the 2013 Nissan Xterra and it is rated at 5000 lbs and it has the transmission cooler on it. The camper is about 500, the trike is about 1500, the trailer is unknown at this point but if I kept it at less than 2000 that would give me a loaded weight of around 4K. Am I over simplifying it?

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roscoepc

I'm sure someone will correct me BUT... I'm a BIG fan of "Overkill" when it comes to stuff like towing and such. :59fb607672645_SmileyToothSM: Just because the weight rating is 5000lbs, pulling 4000lbs, I don't believe that your vehicle will hold up long term using it for pulling this rig several times a year for say, 1000-2000 miles each trip and it's not just about the weight... There's other factors to consider like wind drag at speeds above 55mph, going uphill and such.. I've pulled both my 17' Bass Tracker and my Ltd Ed with no problems of course, but the funny thing is the gas mileage! It drops from 19 to 16.5mpg on both of them! Now with the bike weighing MUCH less than the boat, you would thing that I would get better mileage pulling the bike. But there is much more wind drag with the bike's tall windshield that pulls the mileage down to being the same as the boat.....

 

Just some Food for Thought...... ;)

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AZgl1800

IF,

you don't insist on pulling steep hills a lot, you will be fine.

 

Just make Triple darn sure that the OverDrive is locked out.....

IF, it needs to downshift, pull the transmission lever into that gear and leave it there until you crest the hill.

You do NOT want the tranny hunting back and forth between gears.

 

Also, if you do find you need to climb a pretty steep grade, turn the A/C off.

that will reduce the heat load on the engine and transmission.

 

Hopefully the Exterra has a Temperature gauge, and not an Idiot Light....

Monitor that faithfully, and you will be able to tell if it is close to being overloaded.

 

I am pulling my 26 ft Toy Hauler with a K1500 4x4 Suburban with the 5.3L engine.

I can't tell you how many people have told me that I do NOT have the proper vehicle to be towing that RV rig....

They are right IF the Rocky Mountains is where I intended to be going, but I don't

I plan on going to rallys with the bike in the Toy Hauler garage, and most of our freeway system is level enough that the Suburban does just fine.

 

I bought an Engine Tuner and remapped the ECM and the Transmission for heavy towing on 87 octane, and it is working like a champ.

Pulled it from Oologah, OK to Kingston, OK for Thanksgiving week and it never complained at all. The transmission never  down-shifted once it got up to speed.  For me, that is 55-58 mph.  I always have it in Tow Haul mode.

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Pearl Rider

John the other thing about towing is not only being able to pull it but stopping it under control.   If you decide to do this make sure you add trailer brakes to help

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AZgl1800

Absolutely!!!  Trailer Brakes are a must.

 

When I bought my Toy Hauler, I had only owned my tow rig, the 2001 Suburban for 24 hours.

 

I drove   1,000 miles to go get the trailer. Pulled it home w/o electric brakes.

I did not have any real problems because I drove with my eyeballs a mile down the road.

And this was NOT my first rodeo.... very familiar with bumper pull, tow behind trailers.  Usually w/o electric brakes.

 

well, almost, on one occasion, an asshat pulled out right in front of me and stopped.

I finally got the rig stopped with only one truck length of space between me and his bumper.

 

Now, with the electric brakes working, the whole rig can stop faster than the truck can by itself.

 

One other thing John, that you might want to consider, ASSUMING that you would rather not buy a different tow vehicle.  Get an engine tuner that will give the truck more torque, and make the transmission shift more efficiently while towing.

 

http://www.autoanything.com/performance-chips/Nissan/Xterra/111A50207A50211A0A9A289A1.aspx

 

 

I bought the Bully Dog i3 engine tuner for my Suburban, and it is the cat's meow.

Increased my towing MPG from 5.7 average to 8.6 average.

Don't know about the empty, non-towing mpg improvement, have not driven the truck when not towing enough to know.

 

That alone was really nice, but what was better was the way the torque was being managed, the truck now starts moving the Toy Hauler out of the driveway w/o me even touching the throttle.  And the transmission shifting is really awesome, just as slick as when the truck is being driven empty.

 

Well worth the ~$340ish that I paid for it... and I was able to stay on 87 octane.

The tuner will give you more power and torque if you select either 89 or 91 octane, but, I wanted to start with the 87 octane number as a initial starting point, and hopefully not need to spend extra $$$ for fuel.

So far, I am pleased with it as is.

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Monkeytrucker

You guys are in the little league of trailer pulling.  We pull our Aspen Classic behind a Fiat 500.  Now that is the tail wagging the dog....:59fb607672645_SmileyToothSM:

 

But we also pull it behind the Gold Wing but it has 400 more cc of engine and not far from the weight of the Fiat.

 

I once drove almost the whole length of Indiana grossing 38,000 lbs. with a 1976 Ford F-250 and a 3 axle goose neck trailer.  Just ran in 2nd gear the whole trip at about 50 mph.  I drove to Indianapolis and loaded a big 4 wheel drive tractor with duals on all 4 corners, then drove half the length of IN north to South Bend, IN where we shoved a disassembled 8 bottom plow and a 28' disassembled folding disk.  If I had been stopped and weighed the fines would still being paid today.  

 

So do not be afraid of pulling a trailer.  just not use the over drive and not be afraid of running in a lower gear.

Edited by Monkeytrucker

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youngnbald

I use a Scan Gauge II to monitor my engine, transmission, etc.  Keep an eye on transmission temps.  I am pulling about the top range for my vehicle and verified my axle weights were not overloaded.  Vehicle and trailer axles!

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DougW
On 12/8/2017 at 11:43 AM, Halfling said:

OK, this is just a thought. I'm thinking I sell my 12 foot trailer and pick up a 16 footer with dual axles. Create a side entrance up at the front of the utility trailer for loading the Aspen Camper crosswise (make tongue removable). Fasten the Aspen Camper down with the intention of setting the camper up while it is still mounted on trailer (at campsite of course). The bed would extend over the tongue of the utility trailer and the 6X6 changing room would be on the trailer floor. I think this would leave me about 12 feet for loading up the trike.

 

The ultimate goal would be to travel to a particular destination by vehicle with camper and trike in tow on a dual axle trailer and once arriving at a site offload the trike and set camper up. Spend from 3 to 14 days at one site and use the trike to explore and sight see.

 

Am I daft?

 

 

You may be a little daft :)

 

if you want to haul the trike and trailer you need to be looking at an all aluminum trailer.  Less weight that way.  If spending the money on a trailer like that I would look into getting one big enough to put the trike and trailer on without removing the tongue on the trailer, just drive the whole rig on.  That would allow you to trailer to a distant area then use the trike and trailer to do a multi day loop, return to the Car and trailer and continue on your way.

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Halfling
1 hour ago, DougW said:

 

 

You may be a little daft :)

 

if you want to haul the trike and trailer you need to be looking at an all aluminum trailer.  Less weight that way.  If spending the money on a trailer like that I would look into getting one big enough to put the trike and trailer on without removing the tongue on the trailer, just drive the whole rig on.  That would allow you to trailer to a distant area then use the trike and trailer to do a multi day loop, return to the Car and trailer and continue on your way.

 

Daft indeed! :wink-sm:

 

I kinda like that idea too Doug, that would be one long trailer though...lots of options to think about!

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OnaWingandaPrayer

I completely understand the idea of mounting the camp unit crossways on the trailer,in such a way as set it up on the trailer. It allows you travel in inclement weather , set up household and tour on the trike/bike. Should the need arise you can unhook and drive the car/truck/suv to town.

Trailer brakes a definite plus.

Be careful not to overload the tongue weight or place to much weight on rear of trailer causing the rear of tow vehicle to become light.

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Halfling
53 minutes ago, OnaWingandaPrayer said:

I completely understand the idea of mounting the camp unit crossways on the trailer,in such a way as set it up on the trailer.

 

And a nice firm, level, off the ground front porch to boot, all kinds of additional options for that 4 to 6 foot of  extra "patio" once the trike is off loaded. Bend some PVC pipe from side to side, attach a tarp and you have a covered area like a Conestoga covered wagon!

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Monkeytrucker

John,  maybe you should look at a totally flat car hauler type of trailer with a beaver tail to help getting the bike on and off.  Get one where the ramps slide under for transport and get a garden tractor ramp, or a board, for the front wheel.  Without side rails you would have no problem turning the camper.

 

For the tongue problem, go get a 2" receiver and a 2' hitch ball mount and cut the actual ball mount part from the male part leaving you with just a tube to go into the female part.  Take the tongue out, take it to a welding shop get the receiver (or hitch mount) welded to either the tongue hitch tube part of the tongue and the opposite welded to either the tongue tube or the trailer part of the tube.  Get then to drill two holes on bottom, or top, of the receiver  and two holes on the side in addition to the hitch cross pin.  Then have them nuts on the holes so you could run short bolts in to absolutely stop any slack in the trailer tongue.  Being they would be dealing 2" to 2" it should not be that hard.

 

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Halfling

OK, I'm going to move another step closer to this. I've sold my 12 foot trailer and made a small profit in the process. I have re-invested that money plus another $200 into a new 77 inch by 16 ft light weight trailer (not a car hauler). The trailer is similar to the one pictured below but it doesn't have a dovetail and it doesn't have a ramp or gate (I already have an aluminum ramp system I am happy with). In addition. it has electric brakes on one axle. It has 3500# axles with buddy bearings. LED lights, pressure treated/sealed wood floor. The trailer weighs less than 1200 lbs empty and with the trike at about 1500 and the loaded Aspen at about 500 that gives me about 3500 lbs or less. I'm thinking that weight would be manageable for my Xterra. If it doesn't work out I will still have a nice trailer to get what I need done around the house. Another VERY important feature is that it comes with a Warranty AND title meaning I can easily register it in TN (although it still would not be required). It should be ready for me to go pick up early next week. The adventure continues!

 

Snag_5b5c958.png

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wlkjr

How far along are you on the project?

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Dusty Boots

John  ....  figure your loaded Aspen Classic camper to weigh in at < 600 lbs easy, as my Aspen Sentry weighed in at 460 lbs EMPTY!!!

 

 

15151558542_f4f0727d94_b.jpg

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Halfling

Update, my sale of my 12 footer fell through so I am still trying to sell it. I also had to cancel on the 16 footer. Can't really get the 16 footer until the 12 footer sells. No progress to report.

 

Thanks for the weight Dusty!!!

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Ghost Rider 2

  I owned one of those things and always thought it was heavy behind me.  I now own a kwik kamp and there is major difference in the way it tows.

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Monkeytrucker

John, do a little looking for a trailer in Sikeston, MO.  My friend was able to buy 3, not at the same time, at almost what dealers pay for them.

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