Frequently Asked Questions . . . FAQFrequently Asked Questions @ Mechanical Elements

The best customers are the ones that ask questions.  So, along with all the articles in the The Mechanic’s Post, here are several answers to some common questions.

We understand that many questions are specific, and some answers just spon more questions.  If that’s the case, please Contact Us, and let’s talk about it.


  • All the plans shown on Mechanical Elements are fully engineered at Synthesis Engineering Services, Inc. — an Engineering Company in Colorado Springs.  Read more on the About Us page.

  • Each Product page in the Plans Store explains what is needed to build the project.  For instance, it might say “Welding and Steel Cutting Required.”  If you can do the things listed, then you’re qualified to build the project.

  • This is a question we get a lot, but it’s kind of an impossible answer.  It depends on choices you make when building.  Here are some reasons for saying that:

    1. Cost of raw materials change all the time.  We can’t guess what the cost will be for you.
    2. The plans have options.  The options you choose will certainly affect the cost.
    3. Some people have access to deals or even some free materials.  We don’t know what discounts you might negotiate in the purchase process.  Always ask for a discount.
  • We are in the business of Engineering and Design.  Trailers — and the other DIY projects — are there for you.  That said, we want you to experience the pleasure of building it successfully.

    Though we do build things frequently, we are not a fab shop so our work is not as fast or as skilled as a full-time fabricator.  If you want it built for you, we recommend finding a local, skilled shop.

  • Need help with wiring diagrams for your trailer?  Not sure about what connector to use or how to wire the lights or brakes?  We have the answers all spelled out on our Trailer Wiring Diagrams page, and in this short article about wiring.  Start there.

  • Cost to design is obviously a function of complexity and the base for which we can start.  Our custom projects range from a few hundred dollars for custom additions, on up for complete new plans.

    For example, A typical Tiny House trailer design for your specific needs is likely to cost something in the $3000+ range.  Other specialty trailers similar.

  • The Frame is the base of the whole trailer, so make it right first, and it will certainly help everything else.  It is important, so we have a few articles about just that.

    1. Start with “How To Set Up A Trailer Frame Build“.
    2. Next, read “Tips To Strengthen A Trailer Frame“.
  • For this question, like the one above about cost to build, it’s kind of an impossible answer.  It always depends, and here are some reasons for saying that.

    1. We do specify certain materials, but there are also material options.  Choices change the weight.
    2. The plans have options.  The options you choose will certainly affect the weight.
  • Axle sizes and details to order the correct axle are contained in each set of trailer plans.  Most plans show options for straight axles and drop style axles.  If available, torsion axles specifics are explained as well.

    For more information about axles, please read the article on Choosing Multiple Axles, and the one comparing Springs & Torsion axles.

  • A great question.  In fact, that question is so important, we wrote an article about it — including the engineering equations you’ll need to calculate it.  Please read  Where Does The Axle Go?  Enjoy.

  • Torsion axles apply forces to the trailer frame in a little different way than leaf springs.  Because of that, we design trailer frames specifically for the type of axle.

    We recommend that you follow the instructions about using Leaf Spring type or Torsion axles for all our plans.  Please don’t substitute. 

More Questions?

Questions are good, and we’re listening.  Please feel free to ask them by visiting our Contact Us page, and we’ll respond as quickly as practical.

Thank you for visiting.