M116A2 build

rraulston7

New member
So I purchased an M116A2 trailer and thought it would be a good basis for an overland rig. I think it is and Ill tell you why. Overbuilt is an under statement. I began by disassembling and sand blasting the frame and steel top. After a brief education on the breaking system, I removed it. All of it. Weight savings were over 100 Lbs., probably 150.
 

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rraulston7

New member
Once it was cleaned up, I figured out a way to replace the removed military hitch system. I also welded on a jack. Notice the placard indicating 740 pounds. My guess is now were at 600 or so. When I lift my jeep, I will be able to adjust the hitch and keep the trailer level...
 

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rraulston7

New member
So after everything was individually painted, I reassembled it with all new hardware. That's about $160 worth of paint and primer. Ill address the wheels later. It sucks they are 8-lug. Notice I started on the steel frame....
 

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rraulston7

New member
Well, I have had a big case of "paralysis by analysis". Things are starting to add up in weight. And, I was never happy with the 74 inch width. So off with the top and a trip to the metal store... Lots of expensive 6061-T6. .100 floor, the square is 1.5x1.5x1/8. Its beyond sturdy now and once I skin it, it will be structurally sound. One interesting note. I needed a wheel bearing set as one hub was discolored. The trailer store indicated it was a 9K axel. I found no markings on the tube, the he seemed to know exactly what it was. Weight? Who knows. The top was heavy gauge steel. I bet there went a good 200 pounds. Now it feels more in proportion. Ill have it skinned in a week or so. Most of the ideas here came from other posters who took the time to post! I figured if they did, I would too....
 

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DMax82

New member
Looking great! I have a M116a3 and am not sure what to do with it. Have considered mounting a utility truck bed.
 

rraulston7

New member
No updates. I had to get through Xmas. Now that's over, I will be attaching the skin. I plan on using 6061-T6. I will either polish it or paint it. The latter is complicated. I found side and top opening doors. Ill add the link. As soon as I skin it , I will add more pics. I am trying to decide if I want to run a standard ball hitch, or the military type. I designed this to have options with the hitch.....


http://www.protoolboxes.com/images/Manuals/ATBCatalog.pdf The doors are about 3/4 of the way down the page....rr
 

rraulston7

New member
So here we go. Purchased some .050 50 series Al for the skin. I choked. .050 is too thin, but I live so far away from the Steel store, I'm stuck with it. My structure is so strong it wont matter, but I was hoping the skin would add to the structure. It will, but not as much as I thought. The 1.5 inch insulation is bonus material. It will keep the skin from noisily flexing and add insulation simultaneously. I will get it riveted on with the Huck fasteners then the front then sides.
 

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rraulston7

New member
Good progress this weekend.....All that's left is to insulate the rest of the interior, Interior siding, Fenders and rear door. A side door will follow. Then shopping begins for a RTT. I'm estimating weight at around 600 lbs. Ill take it to a scale soon.
 

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rraulston7

New member
Its been awhile, but I finished. One of the major changes is I traded the Rubicon in for the Tacoma. Twice the tow rating and putting stuff in the bed is nice. My Climateright Central air/heat unit is in enroute and that will make the wife happy. This has been a fun project!!
 

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m.reed.1

New member
Its been awhile, but I finished. One of the major changes is I traded the Rubicon in for the Tacoma. Twice the tow rating and putting stuff in the bed is nice. My Climateright Central air/heat unit is in enroute and that will make the wife happy. This has been a fun project!!
Did you have to narrow the wheelbase of the trailer for the tacoma? I have been looking for a M116 near sacramento, but afraid that the wheelbase is going to be too wide.
 
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