Building the Deck

8

To permanently affix the deck to the trailer I used 3/8″ stainless steel carriage bolts. Small pilot holes are drilled from underneath the deck through the bolt holes in the trailer. From there the holes are widened from the top so the carriage bolt heads to be countersunk and not exposed in the cabin.

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Stainless steel carriage bolts, fender washers, lock nuts, and nylock nuts.

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I found that I needed torque washers, after trying the initial tightening of the first bolt I managed to get it to spin out of its square hole. Unfortunately the torque washers are zinc so to get around any problematic metal interaction with the stainless steel I will coat the underside of the heads and upper threads with tar. As an unintended benefit it will help to seal the holes.

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Installed the bolts with silicone between the frame and deck around the hole to help with the seal

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  • Josh Michener

    Where did you find 5′ x 5′ sheets of birch plywood? I can’t find anything wiser than 4′.

    • ryan_teardropbuilder

      It’s specifically called “Baltic Birch” and out here there are quite a few places that carry it in 1/8″, 1/4″, 1/2″ and 3/4″ 5’x5′ sheets.

  • ryan_teardropbuilder

    It’s specifically called “Baltic Birch” and out here there are quite a few places that carry it in 1/8″, 1/4″, 1/2″ and 3/4″ 5’x5′ sheets.

  • Josh Michener

    Huh, well I went ahead and just bought the 4×8 sheets and am going to do a variation on the blocking of the compartments to allow for the difference in spacing. It will add a tiny amount of weight to the over all end result, but I checked four different lumber yards and nobody had anything wider than 4 feet. One of them actually laughed at me for even asking. Anyway…no big deal.

  • Mike Benton

    Are there any alternate plans for putting in storage into the floor here? I would think a foot to a foot and a half deep wells would work but I question what structural integrity would sacrificed.

    • ryan_teardropbuilder

      I don’t have any plans for this but there is no reason why you couldn’t. The only issues I can think of is the road clearance, and access to the storage compartments as there is usually a mattress covering the entire floor.

      Edit: Pulled up an old thread I read about this exact thing. http://tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?t=8322

  • Ian Moore

    I’m looking at the pictures you have posted and was wondering how you managed to flush mount the wood frame to the trailer bed since there are bolt heads sticking up along the metal trailer frame. Did you cut out pockets/holes in the frame to accommodate for the height of the bolt heads, or did you remove the stock trailer bolts, add the wood frame, and attach the wood frame with the stock trailer bolts?