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Discussion Starter #1
Okay so I have a little bit of a unique situation here. I have a trailer frame that I got for free and I’m looking to turn it into something similar to a parade float for a charity event I participate in every year. It was a job site mobile office trailer. It’s 30ft long but amazingly only a single axle. I already put new tires on it to get it home.

I understand that mobile trailers like this typically aren’t built for daily use. It would only be used 4-5 times a year at very low speed. It would be holding probably around 20 people. I wouldn’t need to get it registered for my purposes.

My concern is how much weight it can hold. Would it need to be reinforced? Can the axle hold this kind of weight-if not is it possible to add a second axle? And as you can see the back end is a little twisted. I could probably try to straighten it or just chop it shorter.

Any advice would be appreciated. If you have follow up questions I’ll do my best to answer.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So in your opinion the frame wouldn’t need to be modified at all? I know some people end up adding angle iron to reinforce it. Just build a solid wood deck and add a second axle?
 

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So in your opinion the frame wouldn’t need to be modified at all? I know some people end up adding angle iron to reinforce it. Just build a solid wood deck and add a second axle?
That's exactly what I'd do. Axles are not too expensive. I'd get 3/4" (Minimum) Marine plywood for the deck and secure with HEAVY bolts every couple of feet AND secure these bolts with LARGE, HEAVY washers top & bottom.
Please post pictures of this project!!
 

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Usually, those frames are rather weak when it comes to the cross members. They depend on the strength of the structure on top to add strength. Your 2 main rails look pretty hefty. I would beef up the cross members a bit.

I did similar with an old house trailer I was given. The cross members were basically just tin when I ripped the top part off. I shortened it, added a bunch of angle iron, then 2x10 pressure treated boards fo a deck. Makes a nice landscape trailer
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the tips so far. I am bringing the trailer home this weekend. Then I’ll get a closer look at the cross members to see what shape they’re in. I have to have someone else do my welding so if I can avoid adding a bunch of angle iron I’d like to. But if it needs to be done so be it.
 

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I would suggest beefing it up, because it's originally a single axle trailer, likely with an axle rated for around 3500 lbs, so the frame is also designed for around that weight (with some safety margin).

20 people puts you at around 4000 lbs, besides the weight of the trailer itself, and any adornments the trailer may get as part of being in a parade (signage, some kind of small structure maybe). And what about when everyone decides to go on one side of the trailer (ie, going past some stands on one side of the road).

Do this project while thinking "If something fails on this, there will be hundreds of witnesses, and the lawyers will drive directly to my house."
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Successfully got the trailer home. Searching the web for a used axle to add to match mine. Should both axles have breaks or would it be fine to just have one with brakes?
 

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Are those I beams making up the frame? and if so, how thick is the metal?
And what is the rating on the tires? and axel?

And then how much weight do you plan to put on it?

Once you know this info, you can plan upgrades.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The I beams make up the frame. I’d be building a wood deck on top. Not sure at the moment the thickness-i’d have to check. Considering adding angle iron to reinforce at least the cross members. Can’t find any markings on the axle but from what I can gather I think it’s rated for 7k. Axle is 5inch diameter. Will also have to check the load rating on the tires.

Gotta figure 20ish people averaging around 200lbs. Plus another several hundred in Lumber for the deck and decorations. All said and done we’ll probably be around that 7k rating with one axle.
 
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