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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    near rochester NY


    i gotta agree with Iron man, my brother has a similar design on his little trailer. without the chain and he has had the spring pop out when jacking it for a tire change. i would think the chain was to prevent this if it hit a big bump at high speed. i also think the welded solid part is some thing that was added later on at some point.
    think of the design without the welded solid part and think military application and it could all make scenes, the military speck trailer would have to meet big bounce requirements without the spring jumping out. adding the chain with the large spring to allow limited spring movement would likely fit the bill.

    or it could have all been added by some fool with a home welder and no clue.

    FWIW: my brother has asked me to weld the spring on his to keep it from happening again. i told him it would prevent the spring from being able to work properly, the spring chain would work i think. but if my brother had a welder his would be welded solid now.
    thanks for the help
    hope i helped

    feel free to shoot me an e-mail direct i have time to chat.
    summer is here, plant a tree. if you don't have space or time to plant one sponsor some one else to plant one for you. a tree is an investment in our planet, help it out.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2006

    Default Old school boys

    Its an over load spring.
    As the load increases the chain tries to get longer and the coil spring resists it.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Maryville, IL


    We shouldn't bash it to much... Someone worked very hard to screw that design up as bad as what it is!

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    New Orleans, LA


    Poor Boy overlaods, lmao. Well I spent 8 years in the army and I did see some strange stuff. from what I can see from the pics I think that guess about keeping the leaf springs in place is probably accurate. Shackles on the rear that let the springs work are the norm, but I have seen a slipper setup used on small trailers and it is quite common on semi trailers.
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  5. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Camden, SC

    Lightbulb Pretty Close To The Mark

    You guys are all closer to the mark than you realize. I'll let JYoung and SundownIII add their two cents before I get too persnickety with this, but I ran into LOTS of trailers done this way in my Army days.

    What you're seeing is a 1/2 Ton trailer that originally ran on 14 inch tires to be pulled behind either a Willys or an M151A2-U utility vehicle (death-on-wheels). All of the Willys (MB) models were phased out just after Vietnam and the Ford/AMU 151 projects were phased out beginning in 1981 (three years after the last one was made in 1979).

    By the time I came along in the Army in May of 1989, the HMMMV's (okay, HUMVEE for all you civilians and Hummers for you X'ers) were still 2 years off and the lightest thing the Army had was either a Chevy pickup (1500) or a Chevy Blazer (also 1500). As you're all aware, Chevy's run on 16" tire/rim combos and the higher "stance" required a higher trailer. Higher trailers required longer tongues (you'll notice in the very first picture you posted that the tongue has been extended about 24" to 36"). So, to make the trailer higher, most line mech's back then simply cut the spring-hangers away from the body of the trailer and inserted a 3" to 6" square piece of steel tube about 1/4" thick under the spring plate and above the axle....whammo!---instant body-lift for the trailer! However, the higher CG (Center-of-Gravity) required a longer tongue, or your trailer had a tendancy to ride EXTREMELY tongue-light! The answer to this was to move the CG rearward anywhere from 2 to 3 feet (and, for higher vehicles like the "Deuce-&-a-Half" or "5-Ton", it sometimes went up to 48"). So, what happens when you both raise your CG and shift it backwards? That's right: torsion on your axle increases exponentially. Anybody out there remember the early versions of "Torsion Bars" on drag racers in the 50's and 60's? Nope...a little too early for me as well. Well, since my Dad worked on some of Cale Yarborough's and Richard Petty's cars back around 1957 and 1958 just before he joined the Army in 1959, I happen to have seen some old pictures.....those old fella's used CHAINS!!!! That's right: CHAINS!! to decrease torsion-under-load on the axles of their race cars (Dale Sr # 3 was a little young for all that, but his dad started out with dragsters like everybody else back then too......see the movie to understand).

    So, long-story-short: what you're seeing is an old military trailer, probably for a 10KW or 15KW generator or something similar) that was modified to pull behind a taller vehicle, where blocks were used to raise the bed, straps were used over the blocks to secure the spring-hangers, and chains were used to reduce torsion on the axle to keep the weight of the load from ripping the rear spring-hangers away from the bed of the trailer.

    Hope this explanation makes everyone happy. And that darned SundownIII better not be laughing his butt off at my explanation either!!!

    (Especially since he and Jim predate my Army days by about 20 years!

    Clint Baxley
    Baxley Welding Service
    Rembert, SC 29128

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    DFW area


    Quote Originally Posted by BWS29128 View Post
    You guys are all closer to the mark than you realize. !
    I hate to say this to a old dogface; but, "Thank you sir".

    I was just joking around earlier, but never the less, I feel vindicated.

    Chains are darn handy on cars too.........
    Back around 1970, the '68-69 Cameros had a problem surface with the higher performance engines in them torquing up & out of the motor mounts. When it did it, the throttle would jam wide open----- and off ya go until it hit something big enough to stop it, or ya ran out of gas. We're talking engines of 300-- up to 500 horsepower in a car, that really should have been limited to the old 145 6 cylinder.

    The factory (warranty) modification, was to put a snubber chain from the frame to the engine block. When the motor mount tore apart, and the engine tried to climb/twist up & over the one on the other side,,,,, the chain stopped it.


    "Gone are the days of wooden ships, and Iron men.
    I doubt we'll see either of their likes again".

    Circa 1920.
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