M416 Trailer Rebuild

yellow_dolphin

Legacy Registered User
City
Melbourne
State
fl
#1
Reading other cool rebuild threads like the Retro Wrangler, Gaucho, Eric's Rebuild,.... have inspired me to start this thread. This might not be as cool and might take a long time as I don't have the skills that all of you have but here we go.

I bought this M416 trailer in 2004 and used it for a while as it was. I fully disassembled it sometime at the end of 2007 or early 2008. In early 2008, a friend brought a welder and teached me the basics of welding. I then proceeded to fix a few spots in the trailer chassis and added D-ring shackle mounts to the rear of the chassis. After that, in May of 2008 I got all the trailer parts sandblasted except for the trailer bed (tub) as it is swiss cheese.:eek: Then my wife and I POR 15 the chassis (and related parts) and painted everything with Rustoleum.

Over the last year I have been painting, assembling, and wiring the trailer. As I said, I am a little slow. :o

This is where I am today!
- Sandblasted, POR15, Rustoleum and other paint, Non POR 15 has Ospho and regular primer.
- 80% new fasteners
- New U-bolts
- New Napa shocks
- New Goodyear Duratrac tires 215/85R16 (2)
- New C shackles and grease bolts and fittings
- New wiring harness
- Converted to 12 volts and 4 flat connector
- New redesigned leg positioning pin

What's next? Future plans not necessarily in this order.
- Modify new redesigned leg positioning pin. Shorter handle and thread. Add flats for wrench.
- Cable holder
- Check chassis flatness. I did not think to check it before but after looking at the pictures I am posting I realized that it might be bowed (bent) front to back.
- Spare tire carrier. Have not decided if it will be under like in some pickup trucks or in the tongue or on the rear like the CJs.
- Reconstruct tub or buy new tub. Wife vote is for a new tub and modify as needed.
- Add a tailgate. Have not decided on this but the wife wants a tailgate in the tub.
- Tub lid with gas shocks, hinges, locks, and a rack big enough to carry 4'x8' sheet and/or roof top tent.
- Gas can and water can holders.
- Contemplating a other amenities but this list is the basic setup.
 
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yellow_dolphin

Legacy Registered User
City
Melbourne
State
fl
#2
M416 Trailer Tub

Here is the next big task of this rebuild. At this point I am trying to define the direction of the trailer tub rebuild. In my non expert opinion the tub is in pretty bad shape and/or gone. I went to a couple of local "restoration" body shops but neither wanted to work on it. That leaves me with two paths.

1) Buy a new tub and modify as needed. Drill holes, cut tailgate, weld structure to it, or do nothing to it. With this option I might still need to buy a welder and learn how to weld as I want a lid and a rack and possibly a tailgate.

2) Re-construct the swiss cheese tub I have. This means buy a welder and learn how to weld sheet metal. Buy steel. Need to figure out how to re-construct the tub. As I have seen in the Gaucho thread this can be a lot of work.

Again, I have not fully decided on this trailer's amenities but I want to get suggestions/ideas on which way to go with this rebuild.
 

bigwalton

Picture cravin' AK Postal nut
Staff member
SOA Member
City
Dexter
State
MI
#4
COOL!!! I was just talking to Kate about the possibility of the trailer being our next project (got an M100, tailgate-equipped ;))

That frame looks GREAT! Ours has a bunch of coats of paint and surface rust, the tub has a lot of surface rust and deformation from heavy use/heavy loads... it really needs blasted.

Looking forward to watching this come together. Have you found the expedition trailer forum? TONS of awesome ideas over there for trailers.

http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=42
 

yellow_dolphin

Legacy Registered User
City
Melbourne
State
fl
#5
Thanks! And Yes! I have gone to the expeditionportal site and many other sites on the internet regarding the M416 and the M100 trailers.

On your project I suggest that you take the trailer completely apart and have it sand blasted. It is worth the money and/or effort. Thats what I did with mine.
 

bigwalton

Picture cravin' AK Postal nut
Staff member
SOA Member
City
Dexter
State
MI
#6
No doubt that's the way to go. I'd be there FOREVER trying to grind all that and there's just no other way to really get into all the channel in the frame... I'm jealous that you've gotten it done already.

Do you mind sharing what you spent to have it blasted?
 

yellow_dolphin

Legacy Registered User
City
Melbourne
State
fl
#7
Blasting cost

At the time, I paid $150.00 to sand blast everything but the tub. The other day I went to the sandblaster place to get a price for blasting the bed once fixed and that will be around $100.00. I am sure that if would have taken everything at the same time it would have been less than $250.00. Maybe $200.00. Hopefully it will cost you less. The shop down here does not see a lot of business volume.
 

CBRogers

Perpetual Parts Collector
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Yorktown
State
Va
#8
With the tub the way that it is I would suggest a rebuild.

Get a sheet or two of 14 gauge and go to town. Salvage all of the little parts off of the existing tub and transfer it to them. Cutting out the floor and sides is pretty easy and then welding up the sides and bottom is pretty easy.

Actually it would be a good reason to go and get a 110volt MIG welder and learn how to weld. But if you go that route use the gas and 0.025" wire. There are lots of videos out there to teach you how to do it.

Installing a gate in the rear is a good thing. It will no longer float but will make it more useful.

If you want to check out how to make a good tub go and look at the overland trailer tub and cover.

If you wanted you could make the tub out of aluminum and it would be more corrosion resistant then.


Carl
 

yellow_dolphin

Legacy Registered User
City
Melbourne
State
fl
#9
Chassis

I finally got some time to quickly check the trailer chassis. As I mentioned, the pictures revealed the truth, the chassis is bowed front to back. I will try and take pictures and measurements later to post them.

Does any one have any suggestions on a good way to fix this?
 

yellow_dolphin

Legacy Registered User
City
Melbourne
State
fl
#10
CBRogers,

I am heavily considering buying a welder but I am holding off until I do a little design on the trailer. I am considering a Lincoln Electric 175 HD from The Home Depot or a Millermatic 211 from Praxair.

The plan is to use the swiss cheese tub as my practice run. If it comes out good then I keep it. If not then I buy a tub from JeePanels and make the modifications to it.
 

jjonesee

Jeep Pro
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Houston
State
TX
#11
I wouldn't buy the Lincoln, the Miller is a better machine. I ended up with the Hobart Handler 210, and I could not be happier. I have welded with all 3, and the Miller and Hobart are much better in my opinion.

My Tub only had minimal rust through, but I was able to patch and weld up the spots.
http://www.cj-8.com/forum/showthread.php?t=21005


If it were me, I would look into getting a sheet of steel bent in the shape of the tub, then weld in the front and back panel. You can weld square, or round tube to the top rail. There is a build over on EP of a guy in Dallas that did this. The cost is much lower than buying a repro tub, and no need for all of the seam welding required.
 

CBRogers

Perpetual Parts Collector
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Yorktown
State
Va
#12
Hobart is made by Miller and is their entry level. Just a little less quality in some spots to reduce costs.

There is a world of difference between a Lincoln 175 and a Miller 210 series welder. Lincoln makes one in the same class as the 210.

CyberWeld.com has some really good prices and does shipping at a good cost too. But if you buy from the local dealer you will get better service.

Going to Lowes/HD will get you nothing extra in the end.

However the new Miller/Hobart's have a very nice small and inexpensive spool gun that can go with their machines and will let you do aluminum at a low cost. Nice thing to do.

I would personally look at the Hobart 180 from Northern Tool as a good lower cost option. It will let you do 3/8'ths with no issue and can be turned down and do sheet metal also. Since it is a Miller it is easy to get consumables also.

The 210/251 series are nicer if you are going to get serious, but for home shop use the 180 is a good class to stick with.


Carl
 
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