Charon, a multipurpose trailer for Pluto


I figure I should finally start a build thread for this trailer build that I'm close to wrapping up.

How it started out..
  • Home base when camping
  • Raw material hauler for fabrication projects
  • Toy hauler for bikes, quads, or smaller ATVs
  • Wagon for doing trail cleanups

Key functions & specs:
  • C-channel and angle iron frame (all 3/16" thick)
  • Independent axles (Timbren) w/ springs rated for ~3500lbs.
  • Matching wheels/tires (40s on 17s) as tow rig (Pluto)
  • Huge locking storage chest
  • 3-axis hitch coupler for better articulation
  • Dual-tire tongue jack
  • Removable RTT mounts
  • Angled sliders
  • Two jerry can holders
  • Sealed/stained wood planks for floor/sides
  • Front ladders
  • "Man handle" bars
  • Long flat top fenders to use as tables or to strap down longer gear (eg. Gazelle tent)
  • Swing out door with swing down table (2' deep and 4' wide)

To do:
  • Top 7x7' awning
  • Side 10x10' awning


Here's a status update on Charon.

The swing out door with swing down table is pretty much in its final form. Two locking pins hold the door closed while one of those also doubles as a pin to hold the door open. Made a simple handle from scraps to assist with moving the door (it's not heavy) and attached two bumps to the unhinged side to reduce rattle. Three latches hold the table in the closed position while two steel cables hold the table when open. I still need to add some dimple die holes to the aluminum table top for both structural strength and reducing wind resistance.

Two jerrycan mounts are finished (one on each corner of the rear) with easy of access in mind but also safety second. They sit under the fenders to help shade them from the sun or falling debris. Three anchor points assist with strapping down the cans in a 3-point harness format. The mudflaps also attach to the jerrycan mounts.

The flat fenders are done, too. The tops have been painted and then lightly coated with some cheap liner material. I also closed up the front of the fenders for a more complete look. Also note that the fenders are just slightly narrower than the rock sliders to minimize chances of hitting them but are still about 9.5" wide on the insides of the tops so they can be used as a table at camp or for strapping down longer gear without taking up space inside the trailer.

At this point -- other than finishing welds and painting -- the trailer is 99% done.

I did start toying with a few ideas for awnings that are easy to set up and tear down. One idea is a top awning that covers a 7'x7' area and the other is a side awning that covers a 10'x10' area. I'll try and complete both designs for the versatility of using either or both awnings when camped.







Recommended books for Overlanding