Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

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jem
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Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

Post by jem » Sat Jul 24, 2010 9:00 am

I have a harbor freight trailer that I want to mod into something like this:

http://home.comcast.net/~marcel.rodrigu ... sshome.htm

Bolting it on strong enough? Or do I need to find someone with a welder?

The link below is exactly the trailer I have. This mod look simple enough. Just need to find someone to do the welding:

http://www.duckworksmagazine.com/04/s/p ... /index.cfm

Any thoughts?
-Matt. Designer.

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Re: Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

Post by LIGHT KEEPER'S KID » Sat Jul 24, 2010 11:59 am

Yeah,all though I prefer welding that would work out great if your the kind that keeps an eye on your equipment for things like lose bolts once in awhile :wink:

Mike
The wise man in the storm prays to God, not for safety from danger, but for deliverance from fear.
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Re: Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

Post by jem » Sat Jul 24, 2010 1:14 pm

That's what lock washers and castellated nuts are for! :mrgreen:

Just bought some square and round tubing. Square tubing to extend the tongue and round tubing for cross beams. I have some Yakima roof racks and the round tube I bought is the same diameter. Now I can use the Yakima canoe mounts. I could have just got a little wider roof racks but throwing the boats on a trailer and going is so much easier. Plus I can leave the boats on the trailer for storage if I want.

I thought about doing a "T" style rack but since I'm not welding and trying to do this on the cheap, I've elected to do more of an "H" style. It will be a combination of 2x4s, tubing, some hardware, and a little spray paint so it doesn't loo too red-neck. :lol:
-Matt. Designer.

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Re: Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

Post by LIGHT KEEPER'S KID » Sat Jul 24, 2010 1:30 pm

YOU A REDNECK :shock: :lol:

Mike
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Re: Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

Post by Oldsparkey » Sat Jul 24, 2010 3:20 pm

Red Neck is the only way to go.

Image

Matt you are 100% correct , it is a lot easier loading boats on a trailer then on the top of a vehicle. The one other nice thing is that everything is behind the vehicle and in the slip stream from the vehicle so the gas mileage is not hampered.

Loaded the gear in the box , tossed the canoe on the top and took out for Arkansas a few years ago. That trailer and boat behind the Jeep did not take any extra gas like when the canoe is on the top of the vehicle.

The down side is when stopping at a fast food joint or motel you have to park in the back where there is a lot of pavement. That's when you hope a simple padlock on the hasp stops anyone from checking out or borrowing your gear.
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Re: Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

Post by jem » Sat Jul 24, 2010 5:28 pm

Chuck, yours definitely provides some inspiration. I'm debating about the cargo box. I use the trailer as a "hauling stuff" trailer from time to time so I need the rack to be easily removable. Plus the mini-van is the vehicle that has the trailer hitch on it so I'll have plenty of room for gear.

But it would be nice to have that option for 3-4 boats worth of gear (paddling family). I'll see if I can get some sort of modular designed.
-Matt. Designer.

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Re: Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

Post by dangermouse01 » Sat Jul 24, 2010 6:14 pm

I have my trailer (not a harbor freight trailer) set up with a Yakima Rocket box (lockable) in one bay. Can still carry 6 boats on the trailer, and all the rocket box holds a ton of paddling & camping gear fits which frees up space in the van. Also comes in handy for keeping soaking wet paddling gear & camping gear out of the van.
Image

DM

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Re: Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

Post by Oldsparkey » Sat Jul 24, 2010 7:04 pm

The box on the bottom could be a 4 x 8 with some sides on it , not really high but high enough to take what paddling and camping gear you would have in it.

As far as a cover a tarp tied over it would work for weather protection. Just have some tie downs on the outside ( or inside ) for a rope to cover the tarp by criss crossing it. I did that on the inside of mine but I used bungee cords of various lengths to hold things in place. Had an eye bolt every 12 inches. If the trailer is not fully loaded what ever is in there will slide around as you go down the road.

They could also be used for anything else you wanted to haul in there. To make it easier make the tailgate section removable. As far as that goes make the back rack removable in case you have to move some tall things in the trailer.

About the boats , the rack can be high enough to keep it out of the way and still put the boats on it. When taking a spare boat then mount it on top of the camping gear... a simple mounting area for it on the front and back of the box would work.

Dangermouse has the ideal set up for just boats and camping gear but you are looking for a general purpose trailer. What ever you decide on , you will be making changes to it as time goes by and you use it...... :wink:
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Re: Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

Post by tx river rat » Sun Jul 25, 2010 10:36 am

Matt
I figure you know this ,but I am going to go thrue it. That frame is not made to be welded, it is light and made to flex ,if you start welding the joints up it will crack right outside the welds.
My sugestion would be use some angle iron clips drilled to match your corners bolt them on and use that for attaching points. weld some collars on them to slip your top racks into.
You shouldnt have much trouble that way.
On the tongue use u bolt like they use to mount the winches on the tongue ,again no ridged spots and leaves the flex in the metal.
Ron

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Re: Modifying a Harbor Freight Trailer into a kayak hauler.

Post by jem » Sun Jul 25, 2010 11:04 am

I got it worked out how I'll extend the tongue. No welding. Just hardware. I'll need to do some drilling and 2 cuts through metal. But nothing a hand drill and hack saw shouldn't be able to handle. Maybe angle grinder to knock off some corners.
-Matt. Designer.

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