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Old 01-17-2009, 07:31 PM   #1
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1961 19' Globetrotter
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i want to make a dual axle globetrotter.

i want to build a concession trailer out of a globetrotter. with all that extra weight, i would want the safety of a dual axle. how realistic is this?

i was thinking: cut off the original axle, which is semi centered, then modify the wheel wheel inside and out, then weld in a dually set up. would i offset the dual set up toward the back? and is the original framing beefy enough for the extra weight? are there certian year globetrotters with beefier framing? early 60's preferred or 50's if i was blessed enough to find one i could afford. and of course i'm looking for pre gutted or super trashed interior. we would never gut a complete, good condition, 50's airstream! rescue airstream, if you will.


is there any photos of concession trailers floating around?. thought i remember one in a vintage trailer book i lent out.
thanks
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Old 01-17-2009, 08:29 PM   #2
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Yes, there are a number of these. I'd recommend a close look at the GAWR on single trailers. Honestly, all the work you're talking about could be cut in a fraction by buying a double axle trailer to begin with. Then if you're talking big miles to go to festivals and fairs, put your money into a pair of new Dexters or Henschens.
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Old 01-17-2009, 08:45 PM   #3
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the idea was to stay under 20'. dual axle usually means 23+ and keep the vintage look. i think streamline or silver streak made a shorty with a dual axle but its the darn anodized aluminum. which has its advantages, but we definatly want the mirror shine.
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Old 01-17-2009, 08:49 PM   #4
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Is the dual axle just for weight? I think you can get a new axle with a heavier rating that might suit your needs.
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Old 01-17-2009, 09:40 PM   #5
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Is the dual axle just for weight? I think you can get a new axle with a heavier rating that might suit your needs.
Good point. My Safari has heavier capacity Dexters.
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Old 01-17-2009, 09:55 PM   #6
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1961 19' Globetrotter
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well that was the first thing i though BUT i just thought it would be a bit safer on the highway if with all the extra weight, one got a flat. how does your bigger single axle airstreams react loaded down when you get a flat?? i know i popped a leaf spring on a single axle 16' trailer loaded down and i thought we were going to die for sure! (we didnt.) i dont mean to fear monger and i'm a fan of the single axle look on vintage airstreams, i just want to properly accomodate the weight, with a certian look and size that is also an airstream.
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Old 01-17-2009, 10:27 PM   #7
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well that was the first thing i though BUT i just thought it would be a bit safer on the highway if with all the extra weight, one got a flat. how does your bigger single axle airstreams react loaded down when you get a flat?? i know i popped a leaf spring on a single axle 16' trailer loaded down and i thought we were going to die for sure! (we didnt.) i dont mean to fear monger and i'm a fan of the single axle look on vintage airstreams, i just want to properly accomodate the weight, with a certian look and size that is also an airstream.
Converting a single axle to a tandem, is not that difficult, especially since your going to gut the trailer to start with.

You need to come up with the total weight of everything that you wish to install in the trailer.

You also need to make a layout drawing to make sure that you will keep a reasonable weight and balance along with a tongue weight.

Your absolutely correct about the hazards of a single axle. You get a flat, provided it's not a blow out, and your sort of done. With a tandem, you can stop, remove the flat, and then slowly continue, or, carry a spare.

There are many advantages to a tandem, beginning with stability, and vertical stability.

We have made several such conversions, over the course of years.

You can outfit the trailer, using 2 axles, from as little as 4,000 pounds, to as much as 10,000 pounds.

Andy
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Old 01-18-2009, 06:28 AM   #8
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1961 19' Globetrotter
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thats good to hear, especially coming from someone who has done it. lets assume all of the equipment inside is evenly placed weight-wise front to back, would i want to center the 2 axles? i noticed on most tandems, they are offset toward the back. i would think that would give you more tongue weight, but less sway on the road?

i would imagine that the offset is not great enough where i could keep the existing part of the front of the wheel well (and existing axle placement), then 'add' an axle behind it, cutting only the back half of the wheel well.?
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Old 01-18-2009, 09:22 AM   #9
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i gotta think just starting with a tradewind would be much easier.

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Old 01-18-2009, 10:32 AM   #10
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Some Safaris came with dual axles and is only a couple of feet longer than the Globetrotter.
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Old 01-18-2009, 11:06 AM   #11
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And lots of Tradewinds came with single axles. . .

I think you'd better follow Andy's advice. I don't think you will be able to just add another axle to the rear of the original. Best case, you would center both new axles an equal distance forward and aft of the where the original was. Better to make a balance diagram and have someone calculate the moments and tongue weight, based on the equipment you will be adding. Don't look for shortcuts, you could end up with an awkward and ill-behaved spawn of satan.
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Old 01-18-2009, 12:32 PM   #12
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thats good to hear, especially coming from someone who has done it. lets assume all of the equipment inside is evenly placed weight-wise front to back, would i want to center the 2 axles? i noticed on most tandems, they are offset toward the back. i would think that would give you more tongue weight, but less sway on the road?
It doesn't ever work out that way.


Quote:
i would imagine that the offset is not great enough where i could keep the existing part of the front of the wheel well (and existing axle placement), then 'add' an axle behind it, cutting only the back half of the wheel well.?
It doesn't work that way either.

You are asking for a complete redesign.

Guess work will blow the deal.

Homework, and lots of it, along with drawings locating each piece of equipment, along with it's empty and loaded weights, as an example an ice machine or cooler, empty and full, cooking equipment, refrigeration, storage location, LPG tanks and sizes, generator (if used), water tanks and capacity, gray water tank and capactity, water heater, furnace, air conditioner, serving window location and size, and the list goes on and on.

Guess work and assumptions, will allow you to spend lots of money and more than likely giving you a trailer that would be unsafe to tow, at any speed.

Since we have done this before, we assure you, do the homework and drawings.

Or, have someone do it for you, that has the knowledge and experience for such a task.

Andy
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Old 01-18-2009, 01:41 PM   #13
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thanks andy,
would love to have Inland do it, but your too darn far away. although my dog wouldnt mind another trip your way for those sweet Hawaiin dog treats. unless of course there is a Northern Cal addition of Inland.

since i dont weld, i wont be doing the work either. but i would like to understand why tandems are offset slightly to the back. i would imagine, its to accomodate the holding tanks in the back and bath and shower etc. BUT hypothetically, if everything (all equiptment placed just so it is actually balanced) would you want the tandem set up dead center? and if the equiptment were not able to be balanced, one would arrange the heavier stuff toward the back and offset the tandem center toward the load? or would you put the heavy stuff right over the axles and center or over the axles and off center?
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Old 01-18-2009, 03:12 PM   #14
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Just another observation for buying a tandem to start with... the mid 70's safaris are less than 23' long (mine measures 22' 5" from front of receiver to back of bumper). You will still need to be careful on the equipment installation to keep things balenced and watch the tougne weight. It would keep down cost and simplify your conversion.
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Old 01-18-2009, 07:35 PM   #15
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i'm not letting go of this one yet. in fact, it has been suggested and discussed to go triple on a globetrotter. i think a triple set of white walls (or fake white walls for max load range) per side on a globetrotter body would look ufo like and atract everyones attention for the consession 'trip' BUT i am also a realistic man, just with crazy ideas. so just out of curiousity, what is the load range on the axles for the 70's safari's? my thinking was that, i might end up having to change out these axles too. as in: single axle globetrotter= 5000lb max, and dual axle safari =2500lbs each =5000lbs. i'm sure i got those numbers wrong but just to make the point. one of the main obstacles in this brainstorm is the trailer being under 20' for some fair and festival regulations plus to keep it manuverable in tight crowded situations. trailers over 20 (for me) start to become a different animal. although i guess the turning radius on a triple axle would NOT be exactly tight.
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Old 01-18-2009, 08:06 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenrig View Post
I'm not letting go of this one yet. in fact, it has been suggested and discussed to go triple on a globetrotter. i think a triple set of white walls (or fake white walls for max load range) per side on a globetrotter body would look ufo like and attract everyone's attention for the concession 'trip' one of the main obstacles in this brainstorm is the trailer being under 20' for some fair and festival regulations plus to keep it maneuverable in tight crowded situations. trailers over 20 (for me) start to become a different animal. although i guess the turning radius on a triple axle would be exactly tight.
Triple axles on a 20ft trailer would give you almost no tongue weight. That would make for a rather unpleasant towing experience (unless they were all towards the rear). Another problem with this is the frame isn't stout enough for the weight that would require a triple axle 20ft trailer. Unless you build a new frame. I suppose you could get axles with a very low load rating though. I bet you would wear the edges off the tires pretty fast.

Whatever you do decide, try to have a good balance between the weight in the trailer and the axle weight ratings. Too stiff you'll beat the trailer to death, too low a weight rating you'll beat the trailer to death.

Just a few thoughts that came to mind.

Personally the twin axle idea seems very doable and adequate.
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Old 01-18-2009, 08:33 PM   #17
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Have you thought about cutting down a 27' or 31' by removing the front and sliding i back towards the axels? and then modifying the frame?
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Old 01-18-2009, 09:12 PM   #18
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Have you thought about cutting down a 27' or 31' by removing the front and sliding i back towards the axels? and then modifying the frame?
Then you would have way too much rear over hang.

It would almost be better, to cut off some of the frame rearward of the axles.

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Old 01-18-2009, 09:19 PM   #19
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thanks andy,
would love to have Inland do it, but your too darn far away. although my dog wouldnt mind another trip your way for those sweet Hawaiin dog treats. unless of course there is a Northern Cal addition of Inland.
Corona is a lot closer than Jackson Center.

The trailer wheels, carry many options, one of which is to travel.

When you discover the headaches and money you will need to spend, to do a project such as you propose, you quite well will think about the risks of a DIY project, or having someone close by to do it, with perhaps no experience and certainly, no Airstream parts.

Choosing anyone other than a qualified company, will haunt you beyond definition.

Sorry, but you asked.

Andy
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Old 01-18-2009, 09:35 PM   #20
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Note the more forward axle positions of the Euro Airstreams. They compute a different dynamic and lighter tongue loads. For safety's sake and the way domestic Airstreams are set up, aim for 11-15% of your gross weight to be on the tongue. You'll just about need to have your interior furnishings complete, weighed, and calculate vectors before you rebuild this way. Weigh your overall finished project and the tongue weight. Be sure to start out at low speeds driving any such Franken-trailer. Be prepared to add ballast as need be. It's on you -- we have no liability in this situation.
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