For all those towing trailers...

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Postby ygmir » Sat Aug 21, 2010 10:53 am

gyre wrote:I would go anywhere but uhaul.
Look for someone experienced.
Probably cheaper too.

Last I checked there were some controllers that used inertia for controlling trailer brakes, so took simple mounting in the tow vehicle.
They had full adjustments to fine tune.
Don't know how well that works but even a manual brake control is an upgrade over nothing.


a lot of the new ones use intertia......works well. that's what mine is.
But, you still set the parameters with a knob, as far as max on......
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Postby Bluemandrew » Sun Aug 22, 2010 5:46 am

ygmir wrote:cool van BMD:

running out of fuel in a diesel, is not good...........not sure on that particular one, but, sometimes you have to bleed the injectors to get them to start again. If you avoid that yay.

The overheating would concern me.
Do you know why it overheated?
Diesels, like to run hot, but overheat is expensive on them.

It should be a great rig, though, once squared away.

is it 24Volt?
remember that, if you need or offer a jump start.


It wasn't a CUCV vehicle, so it's all 12v.

Yeah I had just read and learned that I shouldn't run out of gas, but they sold it to me empty and I didn't even think about it. I'm going to (learn how to) bleed it with a friend of mine today.

I think it may have overheated because I was going way too fast. I just bought it and don't really even know what it has for gearing etc, and I was on the highway ummm...testing it out. It only has an idiot light on it, so I think I'll install a temp gauge on it before we leave.

The good news is the contents of a neon+trailer easily fit into it, so no trailering is now nessecary :)
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Postby Elliot » Sun Aug 22, 2010 6:59 am

:D
An appropriate vehicle, BMD. Best of luck with it.

You might want to stop thinking "gas" and start thinking "diesel fuel". If you ever fill it with gasoline, you may need a whole new engine a few minutes later.

See you on the Playa!
:D
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Postby swampdog » Sun Aug 22, 2010 7:26 am

EB - that was a very informative and scary article. I'll be that much more careful with my uhaul rig - 5x8 flatbed towed by a dodge ram 1500.
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Postby ygmir » Sun Aug 22, 2010 7:40 am

BMD:
good idea, the temp gauge.
and, do you know the coolant mix that's in it, and, how old it is?
Just sayin, if it wants to run hot, you might be well advised to change coolant, use the appropriate mix (usually 50/50), add water pump lubricant (either commercial, or a cup of soluble oil, which I use), add "anti-cavitation" stuff (for diesels specifically, helps for long term), and, maybe even a bottle of "water wetter", for increased cooling capacity.

A general service might be in order.
If, they sold it to you empty, you can't bet they checked things like rear end fluid, trans fluid, engine oil, air cleaner, wheel bearings, U-joints......

Not trying to tell you what to do, or how........and, if you've thought of this all, sorry for repeating.

Just some thoughts.

*edit to echo Elliot re: gas vs diesel*

it's an easy mistake to make......and, can have terrible results.
My army trucks are "multi-fuel" and will actually run on gas, although they really, really don't like it.
But, your 6.2L can self destruct with it.
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Postby Bluemandrew » Sun Aug 22, 2010 2:05 pm

Okay

So I own a truck but it's not driving to the burn this year. Got it restarted etc and added the temp gauge, and decided whatever the hell gearing it has in the rear-end just isn't going to cut it. It has a few othe issues that I would need to fix before leaving, but this thing is absolutely wound out at 65, and sounds like it's still working too hard at 55

Ummmm Yay for a truck for 2011!

Now to go figure out what's getting cut from the packing list...
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Postby Elliot » Sun Aug 22, 2010 2:53 pm

I cannot address the 6.2 specifically, but it is not unusual for a diesel engine to operate close to redline on the highway. My 5.9 Cummins has a redline of 2600, and will do around 65 at that. No harm -- just burning a lot of fuel to push a lot of air out of the way so fast.

My bus works out to around 200 RPM per 5 MPH. So I cruise at 2200 = 55. Much better fuel mileage.

It takes a while to get used to the sound of a diesel engine. I can understand how the sound of a cruising diesel might seem "strained" to your ears.

That said.... Do verify the numbers. It is always possible that it was geared for a top speed of 45 and somebody tampered with it. In that case, it might be revving above safe redline. You do need to eliminate that possibility from the equation.
:D
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Postby gyre » Sun Aug 22, 2010 5:07 pm

Evans cooling fluid is highly recommended, esp for diesel.
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Postby Korwedge » Mon Aug 23, 2010 11:55 pm

I think this will make a lot of you laugh.

My friend really wants me to tow his flatbed trailer this year. He says it has no lights. I haven't seen it, this is all I know about it.

What should I do? :?
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Postby oneeyeddick » Tue Aug 24, 2010 12:03 am

If hasn't put lights on it then there is no way it has plates either.

Tell him no.
We have an obligation to make space for everyone, we have no obligation to make that space pleasant.
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Postby Kinetik V » Tue Aug 24, 2010 12:38 am

Korwedge wrote:I think this will make a lot of you laugh.

My friend really wants me to tow his flatbed trailer this year. He says it has no lights. I haven't seen it, this is all I know about it.

What should I do? :?


Do you really need us to answer this question? Seriously?

Since you asked and I can't resist....If the guy can't afford to run out to Wallyworld and buy a cheap set of trailer lights and wire it up, I bet he won't have the funds to pay up if you get stopped by the not so friendly NHP. I'd say thanks but no thanks.
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Postby gyre » Tue Aug 24, 2010 6:47 am

There is an exception for some trailers here, called farm trailers.

Obviously better to have lights.
Past a certain size blocking the tail lights of the tow vehicle, unlikely to be allowed.

Most trailers can't get plates here.
There is a quirk in the law that requires titles for salvage and also for any components used in trailers, so about six titles required.
Any trailer using old parts can't get tags.
Catch 22.
Reciprocal in other states and annoying.

Find out more?
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Postby Elliot » Tue Aug 24, 2010 8:44 am

Don't tell him "no"; tell him "hell no!".
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Postby Korwedge » Tue Aug 24, 2010 10:55 am

[quote="Korwedge"]I think this will make a lot of you laugh.

My friend really wants me to tow his flatbed trailer this year. He says it has no lights. I haven't seen it, this is all I know about it.

What should I do? :?[/quote]

So now, he says, it has lights and a license plate. When I finally see it, I will check the tires, hubs, and hitch as well as other things to look for mentioned in this thread (read the whole thread). Do we need to have any paperwork for the trailer? Title, registration?
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Postby Elliot » Tue Aug 24, 2010 12:12 pm

My friend, we are wasting time even discussing the various sordid details of this. The trailer needs a complete professional inspection including compatibility with your tow vehicle, and the paperwork needs to be in order.

Slapping on some bicycle lamps, and a plate from his dead Studebaker, does not a safe and legal trailer make.
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Postby gyre » Tue Aug 24, 2010 1:57 pm

I've been offered a trailer made from a Studebaker pickup bed.
May get it just because of the cool tailgate.

Anyone have plates of the appropriate age?
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Postby Korwedge » Sat Sep 18, 2010 6:49 pm

[quote="Korwedge"]I think this will make a lot of you laugh.

My friend really wants me to tow his flatbed trailer this year. He says it has no lights. I haven't seen it, this is all I know about it.

What should I do? :?[/quote]

So now, he says, it has lights and a license plate. When I finally see it, I will check the tires, hubs, and hitch as well as other things to look for mentioned in this thread (read the whole thread). Do we need to have any paperwork for the trailer? Title, registration?[/quote]

Well, I wanted to post a quick update. I ended up not towing my friend's trailer. He towed it with his own truck, and it broke down. A flat tire, and probably burned up bearings. Glad I didn't get stuck with it. Thanks for all the advice :D
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Postby Elliot » Tue Sep 21, 2010 9:21 pm

Thanks for the update.

Even a brand new tire can get a nail in it. Usually a simple matter of installing a spare.

But wheel bearings.... There is a good reason we keep harping on wheel bearing maintenance in this thread.

Now, let's remember to bump this thread in about ten months!
:D
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Postby ygmir » Tue Sep 21, 2010 9:35 pm

one of my big wheel bearing lessons, was, not to over-tighten them.........
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Postby motskyroonmatick » Sun Nov 07, 2010 1:28 pm

So now that I have my CDL I'm thinking of my ultimate Burning Man rig. In short it is a Roll Off Truck carrying an Intermodal Shipping Container puling a set of double transfer trailers with containers on them as well. I guess I could pull one 40-45 foot transfer trailer or modified flat bed trailer instead of doubles. These things will be decided when I am actually able to purchase the vehicle.

I work for Oregon DOT so I will not be gaining typical OTR knowledge from experience.

I know California has a no triples rule but how do I find out about length restrictions on specific road ways before I got to a turn off and see a length restriction for a specific road? Are those restrictions thrown out the window for "deliveries?" I'm coming by the typical route from the North and from my experience with that road I see the most technical section being the pass between Eagle View and the Wye to HWY 34. Is it unrealistic to pull a set of doubles behind a long chassis tractor through that section? I'm seeing the potential total vehicle length as being max 80 to 90 feet in length. How big of an issue is off tracking pulling doubles? I suspect that the doubles set up would have one medium tung dolly to get clearance from the back of the roll off overhang and one short tung dolly to connect the trailers together. Nothing like the length of tung on typical transfer trailers for hauling aggregate. I'm theorizing my weight per axle will be low enough that I will be able to have single axles on all double trailers and would naturally have a double axle if I pulled a 40+foot trailer.

What do you guys think? Capatin? Elliot? Others? I'm game to hear any tidbits of knowledge you guys want to share.
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Postby AntiM » Sun Nov 07, 2010 3:02 pm

MyLarry would know, but he's out of town and I would hate to read that over the phone to him.

I know he can't use his heavy haul trailer in Cali because the kingpin sits too far back, so they have to use the crappy Swift trailers.

I can try to ask if no one else has accurate info.
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Postby AntiM » Sun Nov 07, 2010 3:26 pm

Larry suggest going to a truckstop and get the 2011 truck map atlas. It will have the updated truck route info. You can also call the state DOTs and ask about commercial carrier information. Even private carriers need permits for certain loads. Shouldn't be too hard to preplan the route and contingencies. State routes can be trickier than interstates.

He thinks the off tracking shouldn't be too bad.

Larry will double check what's needed for which states. He thinks you're good to 106 feet, even in California. Weight shouldn't be an issue unless you go nuts.

If you want, I can PM his cell # to you. He can tell you about DOT regs in great detail and at length (hehehe)
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Postby motskyroonmatick » Sun Nov 07, 2010 3:38 pm

Thanks AntiM!!!

I've got a truck stop quite near me. MP 278 on I5. I'll stop bye there and pick up a new atlas and check things out.
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Postby Elliot » Mon Nov 08, 2010 7:38 pm

Make sure you buy the correct atlas: Rand McNally Motor Carriers' Road Atlas. It costs more than the "civilian" one. Besides the pages of data, all the roads where the "standard" 53 foot semi trailers are allowed are highlighted in orange. (It is good general policy to stick to those roads if you have something unusually long.)

I'm no expert on odd vehicle combinations, but what you suggested in your original post does not sound realistic to me. I do not see a way you can drive any combination exceeding 75 feet in California -- except a semi-trailer no longer than 53 feet which is pulled by a tractor.... Hmmm... looks like 40 feet (straight truck), but then you have to subtract the "overlap" between the two units. And there is a limit on kingpin to rear trailer axle.

With two trailers you are definitely limited to 75 feet, and that's if neither trailer is over 28 feet 6 inches. If one trailer is over that, then you are down to 65 feet.

These rules are a real mess. Please research very thoroughly.
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Postby gyre » Mon Nov 08, 2010 7:47 pm

When does the new year come out?

It might be worth waiting for the new one, or getting a deal on the old ones.

I recommend at least the spiral bound laminated one, but there is one made of tyvek now too.
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Postby gyre » Mon Nov 08, 2010 8:42 pm

Usually truck stops are the best on prices.
Availability can be iffy.

The good ones are worth the money, even without a truck.

http://store.randmcnally.com/road-atlas ... lases.html
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Postby motskyroonmatick » Mon Nov 08, 2010 10:52 pm

Thanks Elliot! I will make sure I get the Motor Carriers edition.

Gyre, I'll definitely be picking up the most up to date book for sure.

The vehicle I am basing my plans off of I saw at the burn last year delivering job shacks on skids. It was a roll-off chassis with 2 light duty transfer trailers. In all it carried 3 of these shacks. Surely it came from Nevada. I will have to research the California Regs to make sure I can stay within the rules. Sounds like doubles has to be pretty short. I guess in my case I am not going to have a king pin since the trailers will be pulled with dollies. I'm sure there will be length regulations relating to that type of combination. Hmmm Much information to gather. I wish I took a picture of that set up....
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Postby Elliot » Tue Nov 09, 2010 11:01 am

When you put a dolly -- a "con gear" (converter gear) -- under the front of a semi-trailer, it becomes a "full trailer".

The laminated version of the Motor Carriers' Road Atlas costs a fortune. That's cost effective only for truckers who use the heck out of it every day year round.

Don't forget the low cost of a retired school bus. Mine is a 40-footer, and I pull a 25 foot trailer, so I am legal at 65 feet pretty much anywhere.
:D
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Postby motskyroonmatick » Tue Nov 09, 2010 9:20 pm

Elliot, I admire your most excellent Bus. I have a bus reseller 3 miles from my house and I have been tempted from time to time by busses they advertise on their site. However my current ideas that I am pumped up about revolve around modifying and bringing to the playa 3 20 foot intermodal shipping containers. Yeah it is a really far fetched and right now financially impossible goal but it is the idea of the moment so I am pursuing it. The individual containers would house my welding and repair camp, living quarters and a bar. I set up horribly elaborate camp structures and systems which means half of the stuff I want to do ends up undone and I end up worn out from the first half. I'd like to take care of the complicated stuff off playa and have it in an easily deployable system for on playa.

I found this PDF that educated me a bit more on combination vehicles.

http://www.odot.state.or.us/forms/motcarr/od/8100.pdf

What I would need to find out is if a roll off truck (the type that carry drop box dumpsters) would be considered a Dromedary or not. I'm looking at section 9 and 10 in the maximum allowable lengths possibly also section 2. I'm basing my idea for the 2 transfer trailers and roll off truck on the combination I saw on the playa. This may in all reality be an illegal set up and possibly it was only used inside the event for the actual delivery. It could be that the transfer trailers were brought to the playa by different tractors.

I'd really like this whole set up I am conceptualizing to be self contained. I would like the truck to be able to set the shipping containers on the ground and then pick them back up again for transport. The containers would be modified to work with the roll off truck loading and unloading mechanism. Another way to do it would be to modify a 40' and 20' trailer with rollers similar to what some oil field trailers have and simply winch the containers on and off in this manner. It would definitely be a little more extreme since I would not be using a step deck trailer.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aZ6_FQez ... re_related

Thanks for your advice. I appreciate it. I realize there are limits to what I can do within the bounds of the rules/laws. I'm getting closer to finding out exactly what I can and can not do and that is progress.

I'll only get the laminated road atlas version if it becomes a tax deductible expense. If that is the case I'll definitely be needing lots of advise about OTR trucking. :D
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Postby Elliot » Tue Nov 09, 2010 9:45 pm

Well, no harm in brainstorming!
:D
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