Bantam T3-C trailer

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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 4th, 2018, 2:25 pm

As usual, real life intrudes upon my fun. New upper ball joints for the old Yukon. Happily, this was a very straightforward job.

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And here it is, finally coming back together! I went from someone's FUBAR hitch with a badly mangled tongue to a nice, organized (and straight) arrangement. Added quite a bit of value to this trailer in sorting that out.

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Putting the Tee on the set-pin pull. I'm still not entirely sold on my design. We'll see how it works out

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The salvaged wheels and tires off the M38 make the ride height just right. Not too sure about the Robin's Egg Blue, though! As a point of interest, these Bantams were supposed to have 6.00x16 tires and you're looking at 7.00x16s here. Yeah...that fender well is just little bit full. :shock:

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A little arch in the unloaded coupling means we'll have a very straight pull with a load. Perfect!

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Last edited by m3a1 on April 18th, 2018, 10:20 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 5th, 2018, 6:21 pm

Still lots of hammering and grinding and straightening to do on this tailgate.

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I don't hate the guy for adding the angle iron to the tailgate. It was very flimsy without it. However, the way the angle iron was added was done in a very slipshod manner. Having a tailgate that hinges at the bottom is a total waste on a trailer such as this and it only encourages people to do things that will damage it. If you have a Bantam style trailer and want to haul a long load it's more advantageous to lay it across the top rails so as to be able to tie it down. So, I'm going to hang my tailgate from the top, like a dump truck's tailgate. As you can see here, the tailgate is much straighter now, the result of hours and hours of effort with hammer, dolly and a big piece of railroad track being used as an anvil. Maybe I'm not as bad at this as I thought. Most of it was just running my hands over it, feeling for the high and low spots and working them out bit by bit.

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1" rod, cut and welded to a 90 degree angle forms the hinge-point from which the tailgate will hang. It will be bolted through the side rail tubes so that the tailgate can be removed entirely if out of necessity or for general maintenance. The rod is inserted to a depth of about 6" into the side rail and the tailgate.

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I believe I'll be recreating the original angle iron frame for the tailgate panel. It will secure at the bottom, of course.

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Since the Bantam has such a light tongue weight, it will be able to dump much like a wheel barrow, particularly with loads like gravel.

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I still haven't sorted out exactly how I'm going to cure the sidewall flex at the rear but it will likely involve an angle iron vertical laid in at the trailing edge of the sidewalls and it will be bolted to the frame at the bottom. This is also where the tailgate will fasten. The fastener needs to be simple, easy to maintain and sturdy.

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Last edited by m3a1 on April 13th, 2018, 8:36 pm, edited 6 times in total.
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby rickf » March 5th, 2018, 6:43 pm

You know, The wheel on that sort of resembles the color of that thing behind it in the driveway with little to no front end under it. I wonder what the odd's are of finding that color wheels on two different vehicles? :roll: :roll: :twisted: Wait.................. You don't suppose that wheel could be left over from a different, unfinished project do you? :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:
1964 M151A1
1984 M1008
1967 M416
04/1952 M100
12/1952 M100- Departed
AN/TSQ-114A Trailblazer- Gone
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 5th, 2018, 10:02 pm

You nailed it, Rick. And when the M38 hits the road it will be with new wheels, tubes and tires because it'll be my butt or the kid's butt in the driver's seat!

This Bantam, however, doesn't rate the really expensive stuff. Once I get finished with the tailgate, I'll be getting into whatever suspension issues there are and a bearing pack with new seals. The hubs, bearings and seals and spring bolts are exactly the same as the parts used on the Jeep of that era. Easy peasy.

I lucked into a NOS military trailer plug the other day. I have no plans to mount permanent lights on this trailer. Rather, I intend to go with a magnetic tail-light kit (which I already have) and will refit it with some 12-24V LED bulbs so as to be able to hook up to anything I have. When it comes to bringing old iron home (or towing the odd derelict trailer from time to time) there's nothing quite like having a good magnetic tail-light kit.

Cheers,
TJ
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 7th, 2018, 11:32 am

Spent hours yesterday measuring, figuring out angles and cutting pieces to frame this tailgate back up. The bottom horizontal member is of heavier stock so as to be able to provide better securement at the latches. I'll use all the holes that have already been bored in the gate to button weld the skin to the frame. I pity the next guy who wants to take this apart!

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Last edited by m3a1 on April 18th, 2018, 10:20 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 7th, 2018, 6:10 pm

Checking everything for fit. Bottom horizontal angle hasn't been installed as it will be part of what keeps the tailgate closed and I haven't figured that out yet. I'll visit Tractor Supply and see what they have on the shelves for that purpose. Gone is the tailgate that was not only welded onto the trailer cockeyed to but one that was also BADLY modified by adding verticals that weren't even laid in at right angles to the top and bottom. I'm sure I'll recognize the guy who did all that when I see him. He probably looks like Quasimodo. :lol: Now, I have a tailgate that is functional, square and businesslike but isn't so new-looking that it detracts from the old school look of the trailer.

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The wife often asks why I'm bringing home yet another bed frame that someone threw away. For the free steel, of course! Original Bantam tailgate would have had no vertical members - only an circumferential frame and an extremely lightweight one at that. Small wonder that they got badly boogered up!

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As you can see here, I'm using a lot more steel for my tailgate frame. Still plenty to do in cleaning up my welds once all the fabrication is done. The tipper tailgate is going to be a huge bonus.

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Last edited by m3a1 on April 13th, 2018, 8:37 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 9th, 2018, 7:49 pm

Came across these and decided they were the perfect fasteners for the tailgate. Local O'Reilly Automotive said they couldn't find a supplier (despite the fact they were them showing online) so I checked with AutoZone who did have them, two for $11 which is about HALF the price of O'Reilly. Awesome. They'll be in tomorrow or the next day. No dramas. I toyed with the idea of using the same latches as found on the hood of the old Jeeps but decided they would be a maintenance nightmare down there so close to the road with all the water spray and dirt. They really would have looked great, though. *sigh* :(

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So, here, I took a huge departure from my make no "permanent" changes rule and I welded in a strut rod that sits directly behind the tailgate. At a glance, you wouldn't notice it with the tailgate in place. What it does is keep the trailing ends of the side walls rigid and truthfully, I don't see myself removing the tailgate for any reason so, there it is. I wouldn't have done it if the tailgate had hinged at the bottom. I admit, it looks a little weird without the tailgate but it kind of disappears when the tailgate is in place. Having it up there keeps the rear sides of the frame unobstructed for the placement of the latches. My welds are good but dressing them is tough in such confined space so I coated them in JB Weld and will sand that down when it cures. "Go ahead" they said. "It'll be fine" they said... :lol:

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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 10th, 2018, 9:30 pm

Here's the strut with the welds dressed up and finished with JB Weld. I might have spent more time jacking the trailer bed back into shape but it was pretty close. Not perfect, but pretty close. This translates to some very minor alignment problems with the tailgate but not so much that I felt like it had to be dealt with. In fact, you'd have to look pretty hard to see what's off. The trailer was built in 1949 and has had a hard life. Best to let old dogs lie. Trying to achieve perfect lines and angles is a wasted effort so I'm just rolling with it. Remember my goal? Creating a good, serviceable trailer that requires very little maintenance.

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With the strut and the tailgate side-by-side it's really not all that obvious.

As you can see, my vertical ribs on the tailgate stick out from the horizontal pipe. I toyed with the idea of cutting them down but I've decided I may just make use of that and lay in a piece of rod across them horizontally and weld it in as it would make a dandy place to tie things down

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Here are the weatherproof "latches" - placed low and straight on the frame rails. This makes for a nice, tidy installation and a straight, direct pull on the tailgate. I will probably weld the anchor point onto the frame rail since nothing else is going on there. Had I stiffened the bed side walls from below, this area would have been jammed up will all sorts of other things going on such as brackets and struts. In my opinion, this is really a much better option. Coming up - a handle on the tailgate to assist in lifting it up and then lots and lots of finishing work!

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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 12th, 2018, 8:10 pm

Lots and lots of spot welds.

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Couldn't resist adding the handle. It makes lifting the tailgate up a snap.

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Soon I'll be getting into bearings and suspension. Oh, the JOY of it all! :roll:
Last edited by m3a1 on April 18th, 2018, 10:23 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby rickf » March 13th, 2018, 9:25 am

Come on, this is killing me, you have GOT to trim the top edges of the angles where they meet the top bar of the gate!!! Just leaving the sharp edge is sloppy, that is just not you! A cutoff wheel and blend a nice angle from the bar into the support.......................... done. You are slipping in your ultimate detail work we expect from you. :roll: :twisted:
1964 M151A1
1984 M1008
1967 M416
04/1952 M100
12/1952 M100- Departed
AN/TSQ-114A Trailblazer- Gone
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 13th, 2018, 11:39 am

Seems a waste to cut them off. I still think I'm going to weld a 3/8 rod across those for an excellent place from which to tie stuff down! :wink:
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby rickf » March 13th, 2018, 3:03 pm

Ohhh, Ok, I thought you were going to put the rod on the inside between the two other rods.
1964 M151A1
1984 M1008
1967 M416
04/1952 M100
12/1952 M100- Departed
AN/TSQ-114A Trailblazer- Gone
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 13th, 2018, 3:55 pm

I sanded the rail-tops and threw on some leftover paint I had laying around, just because it was there and I was there and the trailer was there. Rattle can paint jobs on things like this are A-OK in my book. This is a workin' trailer! What you don't see here are some additional welds I laid in where the sidewalls meet the frame rail. Like the original welds, they tie the floorpan and the sidewall to the frame rail with one simple weld bead. Nothing fancy. The sidewalls were bowing out a bit between the original welds creating gaps between the floor pan and the sides, so I added a few where needed and it tightened right up.

If you squint juuuuust right, the red showing through looks like flames. Wow! :shock: Custom paint job!

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I like the look - very tidy, very business-like. It's not perfect by any means but close enough.

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The rubber latches are quite good but I haven't had this on the road yet. The tipper tailgate is really only incidental on this trailer and will probably be rarely used. If the tailgate rattles, I may run a couple of bolts through to secure it at the bottom until it is needed. That won't hurt a thing. They can be removed for the few times I want to dump a soft load.

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I'm liking my hitch!

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This last photo is for Rick. Yeah, I caved in and I cut 'em! ....chiefly because when the tailgate is flipped all the way up against the back bow, the angle iron was resting against the stiffening rod. For those of you who study these photos intently (like Rick), the little round disc thingy on the interior of the bed is just a magnet I used to secure the hardware for the tailgate latches while I was working on it.

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Cheers,
TJ
Last edited by m3a1 on April 18th, 2018, 10:24 am, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby rickf » March 13th, 2018, 5:10 pm

:mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: He loves me! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
1964 M151A1
1984 M1008
1967 M416
04/1952 M100
12/1952 M100- Departed
AN/TSQ-114A Trailblazer- Gone
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Re: Bantam T3-C trailer

Postby m3a1 » March 13th, 2018, 5:38 pm

It DOES look marvelous, I must admit. You have a good eye, Rick. I just flipped it up and cut em with the zip-saw and dressed em with the flap disc sander. It went quick.
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