Next Generation Tiny House Trailer Design Improvements

What can we do to make the best Tiny House Trailer design even better?  That is not a simple task, because it is already fantastic.  Yet, we do have many years of feedback from our most excellent customers!  So, here are the details of how we make the best even better.

Our tiny house trailers were designed with a lot of great input – as explained in the Engineering Case Study.  Then, over the years we have received a ton of good comments, mostly very positive about the trailers.  People love the design, and love the ease of construction.  They also love the low deck height with integration of the floor into the trailer frame.  Now, years later, many of these tiny house trailers are in action as super foundations for the homes people live in.

Good Comments and Input

Of course, there are always ways to improve, and we are open to input.  When we hear repeat questions, we pay attention.  Some comments are about how things are explained in the plans.  Some are about added features or options customers would like.  And, some are about ways to improve construction.  Here are some ideas that drive this next generation of tiny house trailer design improvements.

  1. Trailer Capacity

    First, we have had many requests for a little more capacity – especially for our 32′ tiny house trailer design.  The previous version supported up to 18,000 lbs, which is a lot, but not enough for some of the awesome homes people build.  The new plans must have a higher design capacity.

  2. Axle Dimensions

    Second, in recent years (especially with COVID supply-line concerns), some customers have commented about long lead times for custom axles.  The request is to use a more “common” axle size for spring center distance and hub face spacing.  That will make finding the right axles a little easier.

  3. Manufacturing

    By far, the most common input about the trailer is cutting holes in the main I-Beams.  Apparently, the more common head size for water-jet machines is larger than will fit for the previous design.  For the original, we consulted a local vendors who cuts parts for us.  The design works well on their machines.  However, I have come to learn the head for his machines are more compact.  This has required some of our customers to look farther for a vendor capable of making the needed cuts.

  4. Processing Methods

    Fourth, many water-jet and laser cutting vendors can’t handle the long beams.  While we can’t solve that problem with design (a 32′ trailer needs 32′ beams), as an alternate, we can certainly look and a wider variety of manufacturing methods.

  5. Low Deck Height

    Our tiny house trailer design has always had a class leading low deck.  Yet, we do get a questions asking if we can make it even lower.  We get it.  So, as part of the design revision, we looked hard at making a lower deck height.

  6. Detail Clarity

    Finally, there are various questions for clarity with the build.  Things like where the stabilizer jacks should go, about weight balance, about flooring insulation, and the belly cover.  These items were discussed in the plans, but not specified as clearly as they should.  Certainly, more clarity, with better explanations will make the new tiny house trailer design even better.

Tiny House Trailer Design Changes

Over time we make a list of requests, then figure out which ones conflict.  We then look for opportunities to improve – without sacrifice of the already great design features.  It is a process that takes time, and a lot of thinking.  If it seems simple, then we have done a good job at hiding the complexity.

Here are the details of the next generation 32′ tiny house trailer design changes.

  1. Increased Capacity

    By your request, we have modified and increased the trailer load capacity.  Plans now show 3 options for building the trailer – with all the material differences for each choice.  Build it for 18,000 lbs, or 21,000 lbs, or even 24,000 lbs total trailer capacity.  All choices are on triple axles.

  2. Axle Sizing

    The tiny house trailer design has changed to use a more “standard” axle size.  While we still recommend special ordering for axles with exactly the desired options, this new design uses the more common spring center spacing and hub face distance.  This change will make it easier, and sometimes cheaper, to acquire the axles.

  3. Expanded Manufacturing Options

    This trailer design has always had a unique frame design which simplifies construction while assuring alignment and flatness of the final product.  Trailer builders have commented about how great this technique is – saying they are going to use it in other designs too.

    Yet, to answer the concerns about finding vendors to cut the beams, we have examined a wider variety of manufacturing methods.  Processes like CNC plasma cutting and modern CNC flame cutting that can perform acceptably.  This change in recommendation expands available options to accomplish the build.  This also addresses the concerns for finding manufacturers that can handle the long beams.

  4. Deck Height

    The new tiny house trailer design achieves an even lower deck height.  While the previous version of this trailer has a class leading low deck height, the new design is even lower.  Almost 2 inches lower for the deck height.  That will please some homeowners, because it allows 2 more inches inside while still meeting exterior height limitations.

  5. Build Simplification

    Some simplification in the build.  Our Tiny House trailer design has always focused on minimizing parts and making it easy to build.  Now we have simplified it even more by optimizing hole placement.  (See manufacturing processes for hole cutting above).

  6. Thermal Insulation

    More integration of the house floor into the frame allows more insulation in the floor.  Up to 10″ of insulation under the floor.  And, only perimeter thermal connections to metal.  (The previous design was good, but this is one step even better for thermal isolation.)  This allows a lovely, warm thermal envelope to keep your house warm in the winter, and cool in the summer.

  7. Plumbing and Wiring

    More options and easier routing for plumbing and wiring in the floor.  Within the integrated floor supports, all within the insulated thermal envelope, pipes now have more room, and wires have easier routing.  Of course, we leave the house design to you, including wires and pipes, but the new tiny house trailer design now gives more space for routing things under the floor.

  8. Suspension Action

    The new design has a “no compromise” approach for suspension movement.  Even while lowering the deck height, we improved space available for suspension motion.  This gives the trailer a better ride, and better load sharing when the terrain is not perfectly flat.

  9. Improved Communication

    There is improved communication in the plans.  We have added notes, clarified things, added views, added pages with more detail, and rewritten some instructions.  All of this improves and clarifies both the design intent and the build processes.  It makes more pages, but it also makes things easier to understand.

  10. Belly Cover Options

    The past tiny house trailer plans discussed the belly cover, and talked about options.  However, this left some questions, so now the plans show one approach to do it.  We understand your goals may differ, so this approach is only one option.  Yet, if it works for you, the plans now have the details.

  11. Stabilizer Jacks

    Added stabilizer jack locations.  Some customers ask about the best places for stabilizer jacks under the chassis (when the trailer is parked).  Yes, we always recommend stabilizer jacks for long term parking, so now the plans suggest locations, and include jack anchor pads for them.

  12. Weight Balance

    Tiny homes are never the best case for weight balance.  To that end, some customers end up with more tongue weight than is appropriate.  So, this new tiny house trailer design moves the axles a little to better accommodate a wide variety of tiny home builds.  And, plans now show the tongue load limits, so you don’t need to calculate a bunch – or guess.  You must always use caution with weight for traveling, especially at highway speeds, so the plans now explain more about how it applies to this trailer.

Staying True To The Great Design Features

Most things in the trailer plans have not changed.  The above is a list of many small improvements, which will certainly make a difference, but the primary design remains the same.  We don’t ever want to abandon the key features that make this tiny house trailer design the best.

To that end, this next generation tiny house trailer design still includes all of this!

Trailer Frame

  1. Trailer Frame Strength

    The trailer design has always been industry leading for stiffness and strength.  We use I-Beam main beams in the design and choose other materials for their virtues.  When built right, this frame design is not subject to the same flexing and bounce of many tiny home trailer frames.

    The strength in this trailer is right where it is needed – specifically designed for the unique needs of a tiny house.  This does not change with the new design.

  2. Full Trailer Engineering

    Full Engineering throughout the design.  Yes, as always, this new design went through all the rigors of engineering analysis for multiple use cases to be sure it is ready for your house.  Certainly, with these plans, you can build the trailer, and your house, with confidence.

  3. Understanding

    The new plans have an expanded “Engineering Considerations” section to explain some cool aspects in building the trailer.  Our plans give you choices, but choices in one area can affect other parts of the trailer.  So, in the expanded “Engineering Considerations” section, we talk about it.  We also discuss the importance of some trailer features.  Knowledge is Power, so this section expands knowledge a bit, and improves communication.

  4. House Attachment

    This trailer design still has the industry leading approach to attaching house walls.  The traditional “studs for the walls” approach lacks a look to the future and ignores the essence of mobility.  We choose a more robust approach, which is still in the plans.  This better method allows the homeowner to easily snug things up, if needed, to assure the connections stay solid and secure even as time goes by.  This allows for the inevitable processes as things (like wood) which change over time.

    Note:  Tiny houses are a little different that traditional homes in this regard for 2 reasons:  1) They are mobile, so the foundation moves more than concrete on the ground.  Yes, micro motions make a difference.  2) The foundation is up in the air, so temperature fluctuations are greater day to day than walls bolted to concrete on the ground.  Our design has always addressed those needs rather than using traditional methods.

  5. Options = Choices

    The new plans keep, and even expand the available options, so you can choose, then build the trailer to best meet your needs.  For instance, this new design keeps the option to build it at 32 ft length, or shorten it a little to 30 ft.

  6. Suspension Choices

    Choose your suspension – Eye-Eye style or Slipper style leaf springs.  This design still accommodates either.  The prime design is Eye-Eye leaf springs, but like before, the choice is yours.

    Note:  For the strongest and best loading, we still do not recommend torsion axles for triple axle applications.  Torsions (and other rubber suspension types) are not good for long term high load support anyway, so these plans are made for leaf spring axles.

  7. The Primary Purpose

    Finally, though we have made a ton of small changes with this next generation tiny house trailer design, we have not forgotten what it is all for.  The trailer design is first, and foremost, the foundation for your home.  It has to be good, and it has to be right.  So, we are still true to the original concepts of the Engineering Case Study which is the genesis of how this tiny house trailer design started.

Summary:  The New Tiny House Trailer Design

There it is.  A pretty simple list of small, but important and helpful improvements, that took new thinking and added engineering to implement.  Also, the list of the great design features we keep the same.

Our goal is to give you the best trailer plans possible, so we do all the engineering, test the various approaches with analysis, then revise and repeat, until it is right.  It is a long process sometimes, which requires a lot of repeat tries to get it done.  Yet, in the end, we know the tiny house trailer design for your foundation is right.  So you can build your house with confidence.

Get the new tiny home foundation trailer plans here.

Yes, after all the hours of added work, sometimes I think I must be crazy to sell the plans so cheap.  All that work, and you can buy them for a tiny fraction of what they are worth.  It is all good when you enjoy the fruits of our labor.  Staying in front of the crowd with tiny house trailer design is not always easy, but that is what we do.

Best of luck with your trailer (foundation) and tiny house build.

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