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Old 07-26-2008, 11:08 PM   #1
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1969 21' Globetrotter
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Stable trailer on four wheel - is it possible?

As one who enjoys thinking about trailer innovation, I am curious about the following possibility.

Could a trailer have four wheels out at the corners, wagon style, so that it could stand on its own with out landing gear. After all, small autos that are brought along behind motor homes are towed four wheels down. Is there some simple dynamic reason why this is not a good idea (ie, such as why manhole covers are round for example)? Am I missing something? Of course, front wheels (possibly rear as well) would have to pivot or be under a fifth wheel in order to track properly. I can see how having each wheel on it's own pivot as in an automobile might be problematic even if linked by a tie rod. If the pivot were a little ahead of the wheel like a furniture caster it would be an improvement though not ideal. It seems to me that having the steering axle attached to a fifth wheel that is turned by the draw bar as in an old fashioned wagon should certainly work (the kiss answer). I believe having the wheels on separate pivots could also work as well if they were directed by a tie rod that was in turn directed by the draw bar. What do you think? Any problems? Is it possible?

I'm sorry if this seems a little off topic but I couldn't help wondering.

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Old 07-27-2008, 12:04 AM   #2
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hi 'nik

there is a medium-long thread here somewhere on this issue...

including pictures.

the term for this approach escapes me (oh wait it's like a radio flyer little red wagon!)

withOUT a goose neck/5th wheel/semi type hitch design, turning and parking are issues with the long wheel base...

the trailer suspension would need to be much different than current streams...

including frame design.

yes steering is an issue at least with the front trailer axle...

as i recall the old thread on this had some pics of an example or 2...

anyone recall this thread, bob? roger? bob? terry? bob?


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Old 07-27-2008, 02:32 AM   #3
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This has been tried several times over the last 75 years - all dismal failures due to manuverability issues and the general public's inability to back a double-jointed rig. Go find a farmer with a small tractor and 4-wheel hay rack and try backing it in a space similar to an RV park space. I think you'll be happy with the current design of trailers. Darol
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Old 07-27-2008, 10:42 AM   #4
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here it is

you call them ferrets, i call them weasels.
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