Spare tire under trailer?

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fasttruck

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The Army's solution to the spare tire issue when they started using vehicles other than M37s to pull these trailers was to put a spare on a bracket on the front of the body. This won't work if you have a tool box there and the tire was muscled on and off the trailer when needed: no hoist.
 

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lfhoward

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Philadelphia, PA
Today I started fabricating the angle iron bracket that will serve to stabilize both the tire and the tube that turns to lower and raise the tire. It’s drawn in here. The only difference will be that it will face backward so that it doesn’t catch and hold road spray from the Jeep.


The bracket had to be 45 inches long to fit inside the frame rails, and I drilled 3/8” holes 1/2” from each end.


Punch and drill bits used. The big one was 7/8” for the tube hole, but I had to work my way up with a 3/8”, 1/2”, and finally the 7/8”.


My workbench showing the bracket, drill, and jig saw I used.


Keeping the drill holes and the straight cuts well oiled and going at a slow speed are key for not ruining your bits & blades. High temperature dulls them and breaks them.


Final product with tube and 3/8” bolts in place to make sure they fit.


I had to grind out the tube hole a bit from the original 7/8” size to make it able to turn easily.


Bolt, washers, split washer, and nut, all stainless. I will be using thread locker on these when installing permanently.


The next steps are to degrease the bracket and then paint it to try and hold off the rust. A good prep prior to painting is the key to making it last longer.
 

lfhoward

Member
48
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Location
Philadelphia, PA
The Army's solution to the spare tire issue when they started using vehicles other than M37s to pull these trailers was to put a spare on a bracket on the front of the body. This won't work if you have a tool box there and the tire was muscled on and off the trailer when needed: no hoist.
That is a good idea. If I were designing my camper top again from scratch I would make the front wall strong enough to support a tire. It would look good there.
 

lfhoward

Member
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Location
Philadelphia, PA
Tools for prepping and painting.


First I used the wire wheel to remove rust and scale that had built up on the surface. After that I wiped it down with mineral spirits to remove the steel dust, cutting oil, and any other residue.


Before painting.


After 3 passes with Rustoleum, using light side to side sprays that overlap. Keeping it light reduces the chances of drips forming.


I’ll flip it and paint the other side after it dries in about 30 mins. Later, I’ll give the whole thing another coat.
 

lfhoward

Member
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17
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Location
Philadelphia, PA
Spare tire winch update:

Today I got under the trailer and installed it. I measured carefully several times before drilling, so that each hole was right where it needed to be.

Getting started by bolting on the Chevy/GMC C/K 2500 spare tire winch.


Next came the new crossbeam I made with angle iron. The tube fit perfectly.




And crank it up.


There is not much loss of ground clearance. I'm very happy with how nicely the tire tucks up under the trailer.


And by doing this mod, I just got a whole lot of room back inside the cabin of my camper!
 

antennaclimber

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Looks very similar to mine. I put a ratchet strap on mine as well just in case the winch cable fails or something goes wrong.

Very nice job with the custom work!
 
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lfhoward

Member
48
17
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Location
Philadelphia, PA
Looks very similar to mine. I put a ratchet strap on mine as well just in case the winch cablel fails or something goes wrong.

Very nice job with the custom work!
Thank you!

The ratchet strap is a good idea. I will do that. The tire has a slight front to back wobble that I can make it do by hand. I could probably eliminate the wobble by putting another piece of steel angle behind the winch to match the one in front. I wondered whether the tire would shake and loosen itself on the highway. A ratchet strap is cheap insurance.
 
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