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Old 03-03-2020, 10:33 PM   #521
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I think that you're right, thanks.

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Old 03-03-2020, 10:42 PM   #522
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You got it right guys...That is correcto.
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Old 03-08-2020, 02:57 PM   #523
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Easy Headboard

The short story...Here is an easier way to make a headboard.

The details...While building our foot board it came to me that a headboard could also be made in a similar fashion. By trapping the one side behind the corner strip and a corner strip or bracket for the other side...the headboard should hold up just fine. Now if you have a window available you could also attach the upper mid point of the headboard to the underside of the window frame as in the previous window basket installation.

The key to the project is supporting the headboard away from the wall so it does not collect moisture. I am happy with the product I used around the bed as it provides support to the plywood unlike a fiberous mat. It is also important to get just the right amount of wood and fabric behind the corner strip. Too little wood and fabric and it could pop out. Too much wood and fabric behind the corner strip and it just would not look right.

This also brings up two options. One is to just cover the vertical board with foam and material and your done. Just make sure you stop your foam as there is no room for it behind the corner strip. The other is to cover the board with just fabric and then use it to screw on separate hinged tip out cushions as I did in our headboard.

You will have to use your imagination with the pictures I have attached.
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Old 03-15-2020, 02:25 PM   #524
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Stabilizer Locks for Eggscape

The Short Story...I designed and installed stabilizer locks on each corner of the trailer to prevent unauthorized trailer removal.

The Details...An Escape trailer means many different things to their owners. To some it is their only home, to others it is their retirement dream and maybe their life savings. To some it is 40 or 50 thousand dollars on wheels that we leave in areas unknown.

I am willing to do a few extra things within reason to slow down a thief from driving way with our trailer. Things out of the norm and unexpected have special appeal to me. Things that might confuse or irritate a thief and make them move on. This is just one of many on our trailer.

I think we can all agree that a smart thief, given the proper information and correct equipment, can defeat almost any device. My deterrent measures are aimed more at the individual that stepped out of a bar, backs their truck up to our trailer with a 2 inch ball and expects to just drive away.

I am sure that the creative minds on this forum will see flaws in my designs but it might be best, this time, to just let them slide. A thief does not have to benefit from your smarts.

The idea is broken down into 3 options/posts...Good , Better and Best. I like to plan mods that everyone has a chance to do and the first two posts require no welding.

When I was a kid looking at my Dad’s Popular Mechanics and Popular Science magazines, I was always upset when the project required welding...who has a welder in their back pocket? I was ecstatic in one issue when I saw a mini bike project with a wood frame!

Overview...

What I have come up with is 3 ways to keep the 4 stabilizers down unless you have the correct key or lots of time, wits, energy and tools. Moving a trailer with the stabilizers down or half up is just a little too obvious.

By drilling a hole on an angle in the drive nut and installing a hardened split pin, sometimes called a roll pin, the normal socket will not work. You will need something special...like a key. A protective cover/can buries the drive nut deep inside away from pliers, wrenches etc.. The protective cover/can housing could also be made out of ABS pipe with an end cap.

Some of you might not be impressed with using ABS or a tomato paste tin re-enforced with large washers on either side but this all contributes to a delay, noise, thinking, etc. on all four corners.

Parts cost for the first “good” solution can be as low as $20 and has no real impact or delay in your stabilizer use. It requires four tomato paste cans, four hardened split pins and four to 8 large washers.

If you have not glanced at the pictures yet, now would be the time. It will make more sense as you try to follow the build.

The Build...There are two ways to start the project.

One is to remove the 3 screws holding the stabilizer to the frame and work the project on a bench. This allows you to check the screws for rust and see if any water drains out of the frame. You can also add permanent Lock Tight Liquid to all screws, nuts and bolts of the stabilizer on reassembly.

The second method is to lower the stabilizer down to a few inches off the ground. This will allow access for you to remove the retaining pin within the jack, between the drive nut and the threads. Screw out the rod and work with it on the bench.

Hardened steal split pins are just that. The reason for the split in the pin is so you can press it into a hole just a little smaller than the pin and it will contract under pressure and stay in the hole.

Installing the pin at an angle on the end of the nut deflects the standard socket or even a screw driver off to one side. To drill the hole I filed one edge of the nut to give me a flat surface to use a punch. If you don’t have a punch, you could even use a nail to dent the nut to allow your drill bit to start properly. You may want to start with a small drill bit then move to the final size which should be one size smaller than the split pin.

I show a small 2 inch dia tomato paste can, which can purchased at the $1 store for 50cents, and a larger washer on the end for support...I am leaning more towards recommending 2 inch dia ABS pipe with a glued on matching end cap. The ABS end cap is easily drilled with a step drill and provides smooth operation of the drive nut and shaft. The ABS pipe itself can be cut as long as you desire to keep wayward tools from accessing the drive nut with pin. I would recommend min of 4 inches...max 5 inches. Painting the ABS pipe black also gives the illusion that it is thick steel and it will not rust like the tin.

As picture #2 illustrates, there is enough space in the drive shaft to accommodate either the tin with washer(s) or the ABS cap.

For the key, cut a slot in your drive crank to form the key way for the new pin. This is best done before assembling the can over the drive nut so you can test fit. You may want to go to Restore and pick up a few used 50 cent sockets to practice on and leave them in your tool box as spares. Just in case you leave your crank on the picnic table and drive off. The slot can be made with a thin cut off wheel on an angle grinder. A few slices maybe required to achieve the desired thickness of the groove. Keep hands well away from the spinning disc.

Paint the new jack assembly black when completed. The black paint inside the can and on the nut will aid in not seeing exactly why the standard socket will not work.

Not all the pictures could fit in this post so see the next post as well.

To be continued...I will post the “Better” version of this later this week.
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Old 03-15-2020, 02:27 PM   #525
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Some more pictures for the Good version.
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File Type: jpg 508FEF3A-B88D-4FD8-BA90-CC6274B78A08.jpg (283.1 KB, 18 views)
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Old 03-15-2020, 04:03 PM   #526
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After all that, do you tack weld the (3)screws that hold the stabilizer to the frame?
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Old 03-15-2020, 05:19 PM   #527
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If you are not tack welding the stabilizer to the frame you are kind of stuck as to what you can do with the two screws that go into the frame at the front. You could use screws with an obscure head...you could add some permanent Lock Tight with unknown results or you put a blob of JB Weld on the screw heads and make them obscure.

As for the rear screw...that can be changed out for a bolt with a nylock nut as there is rear access on the frame cross member. You can also make a new hole about 2 to 6 inches in from the frame. This bolt head would be located behind the threaded rod and again with a nylock nut on the back. Or add as many bolts as you like...every 4 inches perhaps...and make them 3 inch long bolts so they have to turn the nut with wrenches every inch of the way. I hate undoing nylocks. This new hole(s) should be drilled and bolt(s) installed before you re install the big threaded rod.

Or some JB Weld on the bolt threads if you think nylock nuts are not enough.

Your imagination, Lock Tight and JB Weld...what more can I say.

That times 4 stabilizers should slow someone down if they don’t know exactly what is going on.
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Old 03-15-2020, 11:22 PM   #528
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Re: Stabilizer Locks for Eggscape

WOW!


Lots of thought and hard work went into this project! Thanks for sharing it, and may Eggscape remain forever safe!
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Old 03-16-2020, 12:55 AM   #529
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As much as I like the simplicity of this idea, I could not really do it to my trailer because everyone would know exactly how it functioned. So I decided to share this and do the mock up pictures the best I could to demonstrate what need to be done.

The “Better” idea is still to come and again will be a mock up of pictures I took on the way to the “Best” idea.

Because I used the “Best” idea for myself, you will get a taste of it and enough to complete your own “Best” system...but not exactly or entirely what I did.

Anybody interested should be able to come up with their own combination of tricks.
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Old 03-16-2020, 11:18 AM   #530
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Roll/Split Pins

I just remembered that I forgot to include a source for the pins that I researched.

If your in or travelling to the US, Harbor Freight has a package for probably cheaper than you could buy the pins individually.

In Canada you will pay more of course and I found this package at Princess Auto.

I have indicated two possible sizes. You could start with the smaller diameter and if you are not happy with the hole and fit...you could move onto the next size up.
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Old 03-23-2020, 09:05 PM   #531
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Nipples, Nuts and JB Weld...the Better Method

The Short Story...You could JB Weld a locking wheel nut onto the end of the stabilizer screw to make your trailer just a little more secure.

The Details...What came first...the idea to modify the stock nut with a pin as in the previous post or to add wheel nut locks? Well...I can’t remember as this mod has been rolling around in my head for some time now...tweeking the details daily.

Doing the research for this project I came across a whole lot of different designs for wheel nut locks since I bought my first set in the late 70s. There are what I call inneys and others I call outeys. Some now even have a rotating sleeve over the outside. Plenty of styles and types to pick from for your individual preference.

I still have my first set of locks and they are not the style you want to buy...if they even still make them. You will notice them in picture number 3 as the one that is not checked. The nuts have a lock that plugs into the maze on the nut head...as many do. However, since the key does not have a shroud around it, it is super hard to locate over the maze and keep in place. This would be an extremely difficult task if the whole unit is deep within the protective tube as in the “Good” model. On the other lock and key pictured with shroud, it is super easy to use. Just slide it over the round lock nut and start to turn the crank. Within seconds it engages and everything is as normal.

Locking wheel nuts also come in different styles where they meet the rim. I selected the popular cone style and a vehicle that uses this exact cone size would be a 2013 Ford Explorer.

I don’t think it is mechanically sound to just JB Weld the lock nut onto the end of the shaft. What is needed is a tube-like connection that spans over the lock nut and stabilizer nut to give it the proper support and physical surface area for plenty of JB to adhere.

Not everyone wants to start using a hacksaw on a piece of pipe to try and do some straight cuts so I have made it easy by sourcing out a pre-made tube. What is available at most hardware stores is a black iron threaded nipple as pictured. The size you want is 3/4 dia by 1.5 inches long.

When manufactured, these nipples have a bead of weld on the inside that you can take advantage of. As you slide the nipple over the stabilizer nut, this bead of weld will act like a key way when the nipple is turned to the right and engage one edge of the nut. Turning to the right of course is where the most pressure is applied when the jack touches the ground. The nipple has just the right amount of spacing for the JB Weld to fill the gaps around the nut.

On the other end of the nipple you can also use this bead of weld to secure the locking wheel nut. By cutting or grinding a grove into the cone of the locking wheel nut, it keeps the nut from rotating. Even before you add the JB Weld you have mechanically secured all parts from rotating on the shaft.

The lock nut cone needs to be filed, or ground off a bit, for it to slide into the nipple. This allows for you to reduce the cone for a good tight fit into the nipple but also allows enough room for JB around the shaft. While you are at it...remove, or hack up, some of the chrome to make a rough surface where you think the JB will be. Before you JB the nut into the nipple, you want to make sure the inside of the nipple is clean of oil for better adhesion. Take care so you don’t cut your finger on the possible sharp inner edge. Also, you may want to fill the threads of the nut almost to the end with paper towel or something so you don’t loose a bunch of glue inside the nut. I say “almost” as it is good to have a few threads left for the JB to grab onto.

When assembling the three parts together, I would start by clamping all the stabilizer shafts in a vertical position with the nuts up. Apply the JB with an applicator like a popsicle stick, chop stick or nail to the inside of the nipple and the outside of the stabilizer nut. Slide the nipple over and don’t forget to turn to the right to engage the weld of the nipple against the nut. With your gloved finger wipe off the excess JB and stick it in the top of the nipple. Finish off applying the JB to the locking nut and slide inside. Any extra JB that squishes out moves onto the next stabilizer or the ends of other nuts on the stabilizer to secure them. Having the shafts mounted vertically helps to make sure everything stays straight and does not droop while drying.

Of course the same ABS or tin shroud should be made as in the previous model to cover the assembly and deter tampering.

Again, you will have to use your imagination to fix any faults in the design that you are not satisfied with. I only did a mock up to help display what could be done. What I actually did will be in an upcoming post.
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Old 03-27-2020, 02:55 PM   #532
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“Best” stabilizer Lock

The Short Story...I welded a locking wheel nut to each stabilizer shaft and covered them with a steal pipe shroud.

The Details...Well maybe not the “best”...but the best I am willing to do.

Even though I had a used set of locking wheel nuts without documentation, I wanted to get a new set so I could order a spare key. I hope you understand that I do not want to reveal exactly what style of locking nut I purchased.

I used a section of black iron pipe to span over each stabilizer nut and wheel lock nut. If you don’t have some pipe you can buy a longer 3/4 inch nipple and cut the 4 pieces required. The pipe is thicker than the threaded nipple used in the last post so it fits hammer tight over the stabilizer nut. You will also have to grind down more of the cone on the wheel lock nut for it to fit within the pipe.

Each end has two opposing welds aprox 1/2 inch each. There is no need to completely surround with weld. Sometimes if you weld all the way around, it actually weakens the area and the end of the hollow wheel nut could shear off.

The same was done when welding the lock key into the hand crank. I did not want the key to fall out and get left behind. I also painted the crank a bright colour so it would not be left as well. However, we have a rule when handling the key ring for locks and this lock crank...when you pick it up from the tow vehicle, it remains in your hand until you return it to its place in the tow vehicle. There is no use going to all this work and leaving the crank to the stabilizers in the trailer hatch, secured only by a lock that everyone has the same key for.

No tins or ABS covering this lock. I welded a piece of pipe directly to the stabilizer body. I painted everything inside the pipe flat black so it is difficult to see exactly what is happening deep inside.

Operation is basically the same as stock and the cost was very reasonable. However, I did not stop at just this. There are two other deterants on each stabilizer that the thief will have defeat before they make it to the wheel nut lock. I am sure you can think of one thing that can be done but the other is quit unique.

Some things just have to be a mystery to the internet world. However, if you are at one of the Rallys, you are welcome stop by and take a look...just no pictures please.
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Old 03-27-2020, 10:44 PM   #533
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A good idea but, do you know what happens when you drive off without raising a stabilizer? Don’t ask me how I know that they just bend up with little resistance. A thief in a hurry probably would just hook up your safety chains to his hitch and drag away. I use a progressive industry hitch lock and remove the safety chains. If was any more worried I would chain the wheels together, but I don’t like crawling around on the ground any more than necessary.
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Old 03-27-2020, 10:47 PM   #534
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Nobody gonna steal Eggscape's trailer, cause he's always out mucking about with it.
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Old 03-28-2020, 11:05 AM   #535
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Of course this is only one trick in my tool box and since it has little to no change in the stock operation of the stabilizers, I am happy with the one time effort given to the modification.

I agree that the stabilizers are not super strong, however I can imagine a bunch of situations where someone driving with all 5 jacks semi down might be obvious to onlookers, if not Police.

Did I say 5 jacks? I did...My next mod is a super easy and inexpensive way to lock down the manual tongue jack.
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