Lister 5/1 Diesel

Drawbar Trailer Design & Build

Designing & Building Our 6-Wheel Drawbar Trailer Page 3

The other materials that were arriving included the two long lengths of heavy aluminium chequer plate, bought off ebay and very nicely packed up by the seller. This would go on top of the 21mm GRP/Polyester honeycomb, to give more weight carrying capacity to the floor. Later on we were to have some issues with this aspect of construction when we changed the format of the Ruston trolley/chassis.

One of the issues with the heavy engine on its trailer was the weight-bearing ability of the trailer floor in the back section. The front half wasn't an issue as it was just us in there, but the engine went over a ton and a half, and we finished up with having support channels between the floor beams, so that the engine would sit directly over the beams for travelling and would run over the support channels between the beams when unloading. The drawing below shows how it was designed originally, the engine trolley outline is in green. Note that there are SIX wheels on the trolley as originally built......


The metal blanks for the trailer pivot assembly had come in, so we popped next door to have a look at them and see what we could machine outselves and what the machinists would have to do for us. We could make the top safety cup and the bottom plate out of the assembly, but the main pin. thrust bearing housing and bottom cup would have the be done outside, our little lathe couldn't handle that stuff. We did make up the drawbar pivot pins out of a couple of M30 bolts:


At this point, we bought a caravan. Quite a nice outfit, except that it had had a bang at opposite corners and was uneconomical to repair. We saw the advert in Pre-Loved classifieds, and after checking what was there, we did a deal with the owner and bought it. It was fairly easy to get back home, but we had nowhere to park it while stripping it down, so we asked Chris up at the farm if we could store it inside in one of his buildings while we stripped it.

We didn't take any pictures of it while we were doing the work, but the caravan provided us with a complete cooker hob, oven, fridge, cassette toilet and water heater, all at a fraction of what it would have cost to buy new. Here are some pictures of the equivalent caravan that we took off ebay (with the seller's permission)

The main attraction was that the complete kitchen unit was squared off in all sides, so relatively easy to put into the trailer body. The shower wasn't actually used in the end, we got one from another source, but the Carver Cascade II water heater was a big bonus as it had not long been replaced. What we couldn't use from the Swift we sold on ebay, eventually getting our money back, but not our time obviously.

It was the start of February and we were readying ourselves for the trip to the metalworkers and the main chassis assembly. The rest of the machining had been done, and we had all of the parts back for the main steering pivot, there were the clips and nylon washers for the main drawbar pivot pins and the main drawing showing the interior layout was also done, based roughly around the Swift caravan parts:

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