Light tower conversion build

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Schwaan

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Saskatoon, SK, Canada
First Name
Sean
Last Name
Sawatzky
A little about myself, I'm a heavy duty mechanic from Saskatchewan Canada. Been traveling all over Canada in a tent for the past 10 years. I've decided to build the fiance and I a overland/expedition trailer to pull behind my Cherokee trailhawk. After researching different builds for the last 6 months. I've decided to take the cheaper route. I dont mind the extra work.

I found myself a contruction light tower locally for $600. This weekend I stripped it down completely. I managed to sell the isuzu diesel(not running and torn apart) and the genset from it instantly for $500. As well as the 4x 1000w metal halide lights (legal marijuana grows to thank) for $75 a piece. Great way to start a build. 2 days of ownership and its stripped and turned a profit. Off to the sandblaster.

The unit after being stripped has provided me with a few items I can repurpose. A 3500lb axle and suspension, all 4 Jack's & mounts, all conveniently placed. The pintle/ball combo hitch. 2 deep cycle batteries. Over the years of pulling wrenches I've acquired alot of random parts I'll be able to use as well.

The plan next is to sandblast, buy and fit a rtt. I've got my eyes on a tepui ayer 2. Reason being simpley the size. I'll be replacing 100% of the electrical as soon as I get it back from sandblasting, starting with all new exterior LED lights.

What I'm trying to achieve here is a compact, cost effective, strong, do it all trailer. If you want to chime in and expand my knowledge, I'd appreciate it. If you've built your own, I'm looking for the things you would have done different, and things you wish you would have done sooner. If you've got venders in Canada please share. If you want to build your own and stay on a budget then stay tuned.
20190619_181256.jpeg20190622_113142.jpeg20190622_163349.jpeg20190623_153415.jpeg20190623_153434.jpeg
 

Schwaan

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Saskatoon, SK, Canada
First Name
Sean
Last Name
Sawatzky
Work has been busy, not much progress. Opted out of the sandblast. So I pulled out the grinder and started to peel some paint. Wont be nearly as nice as a finish but itll be cheaper, and its just going to get abused anyway. 20190625_182333.jpeg
 

Schwaan

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Saskatoon, SK, Canada
First Name
Sean
Last Name
Sawatzky
You should consider bed liner. It's kind of like wall paper in your house. It hides a lot of flaws!
I've been in looking around for a shop to line-x it. Honestly I'm just looking for the best price, and theres about 30 shops.

This weekend I managed to finish prep on the body, I work at a fab shop and am having new side panels built for rigidity. I also found some pretty cool taillights that I had to install for travel. This week I plan on cutting out the rear grill section and building a access door. Hopefully I get a good electrical system started as well. Luckily my fiances good friend owns a junkyard, in which I hope to find some decent wheels for next to nothing. So far total cost of this build is at 325$ and 20hrs of my time.20190705_210553.jpeg20190705_210530.jpeg20190705_210755.jpeg
 
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PCO6

Rank VI
Member

Pathfinder I

3,230
Newmarket, Ontario
Member #

12534

That thing is coming along great! I love the shape of it. LINE-X is great. I had my Jeep Comanche bed done last year and I have no regrets at all. I'd be careful in your case though. I considered it for parts of one of my trailers (see my signature below) and decided to go with simple aerosols for now. My reasoning is that as I use it I'm going to decide that I need to drill a hole here, weld a bracket there, etc. Unless you're absolutely certain that you're not going to make any changes I'd keep things simple for now. When you're happy with it you can LINE-X over almost anything! I even learned that they can even fill small holes without you having to weld them shut They just put aluminum heating duct tape over the hole and then spray over that!

Also, I'd hang onto that fire extinguisher bracket. Hopefully you'll be able to use it to mount a 5 lb. propane cylinder. It looks to be about the right size (diameter not height).

btw … I need a friend that owns a junk yard!!!
 
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Schwaan

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Saskatoon, SK, Canada
First Name
Sean
Last Name
Sawatzky
That thing is coming along great! I love the shape of it. LINE-X is great. I had my Jeep Comanche bed done last year and I have no regrets at all. I'd be careful in your case though. I considered it for parts of one of my trailers (see my signature below) and decided to go with simple aerosols for now. My reasoning is that as I use it I'm going to decide that I need to drill a hole here, weld a bracket there, etc. Unless you're absolutely certain that you're not going to make any changes I'd keep things simple for now. When you're happy with it you can LINE-X over almost anything! I even learned that they can even fill small holes without you having to weld them shut They just put aluminum heating duct tape over the hole and then spray over that!

Also, I'd hang onto that fire extinguisher bracket. Hopefully you'll be able to use it to mount a 5 lb. propane cylinder. It looks to be about the right size (diameter not height).

btw … I need a friend that owns a junk yard!!!
I kept a few goodies from it, fire extinguisher & mount, battery box & hold down, coolant reservoir. I really don't know exactly the plan on paint/line x. Still weighing my options. I love the hitch system on this trailer, its pintle/ball combo, simply pull 2 hitch pins and flip it. I plan on building a deck plate near the front as well since every little bit of space counts. Thankfully my shop is shared with a professional welder/fabricator. It definatly pays off knowing the right people.

Unfortunatly my trailer will not be ready for my first big expedition to Victoria BC at the end of July. I cannot sacrifice my entire trip to finish the trailer. 20190705_210744.jpeg
 
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Rubinot06

Rank I
Member

Contributor I

233
Pierce County, WA, USA
First Name
Paul
Last Name
Osness
Member #

16557

I kept a few goodies from it, fire extinguisher & mount, battery box & hold down, coolant reservoir. I really don't know exactly the plan on paint/line x. Still weighing my options. I love the hitch system on this trailer, its pintle/ball combo, simply pull 2 hitch pins and flip it. I plan on building a deck plate near the front as well since every little bit of space counts. Thankfully my shop is shared with a professional welder/fabricator. It definatly pays off knowing the right people.

Unfortunatly my trailer will not be ready for my first big expedition to Victoria BC at the end of July. I cannot sacrifice my entire trip to finish the trailer. View attachment 106775
Looking good!
 

Billiebob

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Pathfinder I

1,760
Nakusp, BC V0G 1R0, Canada
First Name
Bill
Last Name
Tobey
Member #

18893

I love builds like this. Starting with an existing trailer.

Just a thought, for that deck, you might want a cross member under the tongue to each front corner.
Very cool idea.
 

Schwaan

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Saskatoon, SK, Canada
First Name
Sean
Last Name
Sawatzky
I love builds like this. Starting with an existing trailer.

Just a thought, for that deck, you might want a cross member under the tongue to each front corner.
Very cool idea.
I'll most likely be putting one in. My chop saw decided to quit on me today. I Still havent spent very much, my total now with supplies I'm at 400$.
 

Schwaan

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Saskatoon, SK, Canada
First Name
Sean
Last Name
Sawatzky
Now that my holidays are finished. It's back to the trailer build. As we were on the road my thoughts were still back at home thinking of ideas. Were currently looking at picking up a couple kayaks. Although I'm running out of space to haul them. But I keep coming back to the idea of building new fenders that allow for a kayak to be mounted.. any thoughts? Think itll work? 20190808_202523-01.jpeg
 

PCO6

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Pathfinder I

3,230
Newmarket, Ontario
Member #

12534

I used to haul 2 kayaks and 2 bikes on racks I made for my utility trailer and it worked well. I simply adapted standard "store bought" racks. I think you could use the sloped sides of your trailer to your advantage. Kayak hulls have a sloped cross section that might allow you to place them closer to your trailer body. I'm not sure if you have plans for the top of your trailer (a rack?) but it looks like you could put 2 bikes side by side up there.

 

Schwaan

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Saskatoon, SK, Canada
First Name
Sean
Last Name
Sawatzky
I used to haul 2 kayaks and 2 bikes on racks I made for my utility trailer and it worked well. I simply adapted standard "store bought" racks. I think you could use the sloped sides of your trailer to your advantage. Kayak hulls have a sloped cross section that might allow you to place them closer to your trailer body. I'm not sure if you have plans for the top of your trailer (a rack?) but it looks like you could put 2 bikes side by side up there.

I like the idea of using the slope sheets to mount kayak mounts. But the issue currently is.. no kayaks yet. Nor a rtt. On a side note... I finished up the deck today. As for my bikes. I'll end up welding a hitch on the back to use my thule bike rack. Need to keep the top open for my RTT. 20190819_162834.jpeg20190819_162827.jpeg
 

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Schwaan

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Saskatoon, SK, Canada
First Name
Sean
Last Name
Sawatzky
Hopefully someone can chime in. At this point I'm all over the place deciding what's next. I've found some old fender mounts from our semis that I've been contemplating using for a top rack for my rtt. Looking for input for clearance, currently they'd bolt right up and I'd have about 5" from the top of trailer to the bottom rail. I see some folks raising it up higher. I was thinking of lowering but just looking for some suggestion.
 

Edy Coyote

Rank V
Member

Enthusiast I

1,573
Denver CO
First Name
Edy
Last Name
Coyote
Member #

14967

A little about myself, I'm a heavy duty mechanic from Saskatchewan Canada. Been traveling all over Canada in a tent for the past 10 years. I've decided to build the fiance and I a overland/expedition trailer to pull behind my Cherokee trailhawk. After researching different builds for the last 6 months. I've decided to take the cheaper route. I dont mind the extra work.

I found myself a contruction light tower locally for $600. This weekend I stripped it down completely. I managed to sell the isuzu diesel(not running and torn apart) and the genset from it instantly for $500. As well as the 4x 1000w metal halide lights (legal marijuana grows to thank) for $75 a piece. Great way to start a build. 2 days of ownership and its stripped and turned a profit. Off to the sandblaster.

The unit after being stripped has provided me with a few items I can repurpose. A 3500lb axle and suspension, all 4 Jack's & mounts, all conveniently placed. The pintle/ball combo hitch. 2 deep cycle batteries. Over the years of pulling wrenches I've acquired alot of random parts I'll be able to use as well.

The plan next is to sandblast, buy and fit a rtt. I've got my eyes on a tepui ayer 2. Reason being simpley the size. I'll be replacing 100% of the electrical as soon as I get it back from sandblasting, starting with all new exterior LED lights.

What I'm trying to achieve here is a compact, cost effective, strong, do it all trailer. If you want to chime in and expand my knowledge, I'd appreciate it. If you've built your own, I'm looking for the things you would have done different, and things you wish you would have done sooner. If you've got venders in Canada please share. If you want to build your own and stay on a budget then stay tuned.
View attachment 104847View attachment 104848View attachment 104849View attachment 104850View attachment 104851
Love what you've done. I really like repurposed stuff like this. I just converted an old arrow board trailer they use in construction into a ATV trailer. There's a lot of opportunity for relatively inexpensive gear with a little ingenuity.