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Old 03-03-2006, 03:49 PM   #113
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I wonder how the heck Wally Byam expected people to use a bathtub with only an 18 gallon water tank?!
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Old 03-03-2006, 04:02 PM   #114
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Only once I'd say.

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Old 03-03-2006, 10:19 PM   #115
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Does this help? This is from the roadside looking in, forward of the wheels.
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Old 03-05-2006, 09:16 PM   #116
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Thanks for the picture! It does help. I also went out to Apache Junction this weekend where the Airstream dealership is. I took my tape measure and notebook I crawled down under every trailer similar in length to mine and measured where the tanks were (from what I could tell based on the portrusions) and how far down they extended. I did this to the new trailers as well as some from as far back as '71. I got some strange looks... I also went over to an RV Parts store to get some feedback from a very helpful lady who works there.

So basically, I think my re-design is along these lines:
- 8" (Max depth) approx 35 gal gray tank over the rear axle, extending behind it.
- 8" (max depth) approx 14 gal black tank between the two axles

Okay... and here's the major design change, I'm not going to put the fresh water tank under the floor anymore. I'll be putting a larger tank in the previous location of the original 18 gallon tank. I've been told that it's a good place for this weight. I can fit 35+ gallons in this location pretty easily, along with the new pump.

So I'm going to finalize all the details and place my order this week, install everything next week. Any words of warning?
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Old 03-05-2006, 10:54 PM   #117
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Depending on where the original location of the fresh tank was, it might not be advisable to increase the volume of the tank by much. If it is way in the front, then the variation tongue weight will throw off your hitch adjustment big time.
35gal water weigh about 280lbs or so. Having that much variable weight can't be a good thing, in my opinion.
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Old 03-06-2006, 01:25 PM   #118
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Originally Posted by uwe
Depending on where the original location of the fresh tank was, it might not be advisable to increase the volume of the tank by much. If it is way in the front, then the variation tongue weight will throw off your hitch adjustment big time.
35gal water weigh about 280lbs or so. Having that much variable weight can't be a good thing, in my opinion.
The original water tank was inside the trailer, at the very front. It was about 18 gallons contained in an aluminum cylinder. That would be approx 148 pounds, full. Initially I wasn't even considering putting the water tank back in that location, but the lady at the RV store - and a few other people I spoke to this weekend - told me that is the preferred location for fresh water storage on travel trailers; inside the trailer (as opposed to under it) and as far forward as possible. It seemed counterintuitive to me, but then I considered that is also where Wally Byam had originally designated its location to be as well...

I need to figure out how to calculate my tongue weight based on the location of water tanks and whether they're full or not. Anyone know the formula for this?
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Old 03-06-2006, 03:52 PM   #119
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More musings on weights and distribution

This is a great article on calculating weight distribution when using a weight distributing hitch: http://www.trailerlife.com/cforum/in...d/14265335.cfm

I also found an interesting article regarding loading military aircraft and determining the cargo center of balance which can be applied to loading a trailer as well. Of course, I think the main difference is that with a trailer, you don't necessarily want it to be "balanced" but instead want a about 15% of the weight leaning on the ball. http://www.globalsecurity.org/milita...m/55-9/ch5.htm

Okay, so I found my formulae that I needed:
Gray Tank weight X Distance from rear axle = Rear moment weight (inch-pounds)
Black Tank weight X Distance from rear axle
+
Fresh Tank weight X Distance from rear axle = Front moment weight (inch-pounds)

The difference between these numbers should be 15%, with the greater being the front moment weight. I'll probably also consider the moment-weight of the batteries on the hitch and the A/C in the rear. In regards to the rest of the items in the trailer (like furniture, etc) I will assume it was balanced well enough when it was built at the factory... I only want to know if my additions are going to screw up my hitch weight.

Also, using the weight distribution formulae, I can determine what my in-tow weight on my vehicle axles and trailer axles will be with these new additions (assuming that the trailer weighed approx 3500 lbs before the additions).
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Old 03-09-2006, 09:34 PM   #120
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Moving Forward

Okay.... I've done my calculations and stopped futzing around with different designs.

I've finally ORDERED the tanks (instead of endlessly reviewing catalogs), got all the metal for the welding, bought the POR-15, etc, etc.

The gray and black tanks are going just behind the rear axle. The freshwater tank is going in front of the front axle. Two batteries (and maybe a spare) are going up on the hitch with the propane tanks. The A/C is going under the bed. This distribution of weight gives me a nice balance, no matter what's loaded; gray full fresh empty, fresh full gray empty, etc, etc.

The black tank that I ordered is approx 14 gallons. The gray is 38. The freshwater tank is just over 40 gallons. The fresh tank will not be portruding below the frame rails, but the gray and black tanks will, by just under 7". I decided to do it this way because it won't really be noticeable, I think it works better for the drains and vents, and it won't interfere with my angle of approach for the rear end.

So anyhow, thanks to everyone for helping me get through my holding tank planning woes... and wish me luck!
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Old 03-09-2006, 10:02 PM   #121
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Here's wishing you luck! You tank plan sounds like a good one. For my curiosity are you planning to beef up that frame in the area of the tanks to handle the additional weight?
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Old 03-10-2006, 09:56 AM   #122
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ankornuta
I've finally ORDERED the tanks
which ones did you wind up going with? (manufacturer/model#)

38g is big. didn't think you'd be able to fit one that size.
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Old 03-10-2006, 10:34 AM   #123
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Here's wishing you luck! You tank plan sounds like a good one. For my curiosity are you planning to beef up that frame in the area of the tanks to handle the additional weight?
I may box the 4" C-channel part of the frame where the water tanks mount and moving away from the water tanks, toward the axles in order to prevent bending in those places. Those are the areas that will endure the most stress from the weight.
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Old 03-10-2006, 10:53 AM   #124
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Originally Posted by chuck
which ones did you wind up going with? (manufacturer/model#)

38g is big. didn't think you'd be able to fit one that size.
I'm not sure of the exact manufacturer of the tank; I ordered from Al's RV here in AZ. Brad/flyfshr helped me out with finding them and they were really helpful. The part number for the gray tank from their catalog (which I think is also available online) is #23705. The black tank was part #23724. I'll check on the manufacturer and post that information here as well.

Again, whether or not it "fits" depends on who you ask It will not fit between the frame rails. The gray tank is just under 8" from the top to lowest point. The frame rails as you probably know are only 4" tall. Add to that the room that has to be left for drain lines (angling down) and vent pipes (angling up) and that really only leaves about an inch between the frame rails for holding tanks. These tanks will portrude below the frame rails and will be shielded by a frame that's being welded up to hold them in place as well as either 1" Ply or 16ga sheet steel.

I did a lot of "research" on Airstreams from different years to determine how they did it and this is pretty much how they do it. The portrusion is not noticeable standing next to the trailer, or even from a distance really, unless you are looking for it.
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Old 03-10-2006, 04:53 PM   #125
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The tanks won't be here until Tuesday afternoon, around 4 I hate waiting.
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Old 03-10-2006, 09:07 PM   #126
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ankornuta
I may box the 4" C-channel part of the frame where the water tanks mount and moving away from the water tanks, toward the axles in order to prevent bending in those places. Those are the areas that will endure the most stress from the weight.
I boxed on most of my frame during the "shell off" phase, including the tongue.
I used 4in by 3/16in flat steel. It added a few pounds to the weight, but not more than I could carry by myself, which is about 100lbs.
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