More Trailer Plans For Torsion Axles

More New Product Announcements:  The Mechanical Elements line of DIY Trailer Blueprints has just expanded – AGAIN – with more trailer plans for torsion axles.  These new trailer plans fill in some of the blanks in the line of trailers by duplicating many of the sizes — but with designs made for torsion axles.

Since our goal is to serve you, we’ve expanded the offerings so there’s no question about using the plans with torsion axles.  Prices for the new plans are identical to the matching trailer sizes made for Leaf Springs.  These new plans are one more piece in the chain.  And, as mentioned earlier, we are continuing to expand the line of plans.  Please let us know if you have a particular size you’ve been dying to build.

5x8-3500lb Torsion Axle Utility Trailer

What New Sizes?

Great question.  The new plans this time around focus on our 3500# series.  Single axle utility trailers.

The new trailer plans for torsion axles include the 4′ x 8′ – 3500# (shown in the image), along with the wider 5′ x 8′ – 3500#, and the very popular size 5′ x 10′ – 3500#.  (Shown in the images at the top of the page.)

While these are a great addition, we know they are not enough.  Stay in contact, because there are definitely more coming.  That said, please be patient, because there is a lot of work that goes into the engineering of these plans.  While it does take some time, it’s part of our commitment to make them the very best plans available to you.

Now with more options, it brings up the question:  “Which Trailer Plans Should I Buy?

Sizes We Don’t Have

We are often asked about tandem torsion axles.  While we do see these in the wild sometimes (mostly for RV’s), tandem torsions are not a good idea.  They don’t share the load equally, because they can’t.  Here’s an article to explain it.  Make sure you read the comments too, since some of our readers have had trouble just as explained in the article.

Trailer Plans For Torsion Axles?

We have said a lot about selecting axles (read Trailer Axles 101, for example).  And, we talk about design differences required for torsion axles as compared to leaf springs.  Our new plans give you the small, but necessary design features to accommodate the loading and stress differences.

(Read some of the technical stuff in this article comparing Torsion Axles with Leaf Springs.)

Trailer Axle Choices
Torsion Axle Engineering Analysis W/O Design Optimization. Our New Designs Do Much Better.

Looking at the fun little Finite Element Analysis image here with all the pretty colors, it may look scary with all the reds.  Yes, these are higher stresses when not compensated, but our new designs take that into account.  The plans on offer at Mechanical Elements are Fully Engineered — not slapped together.

Most of our plans use leaf spring axles because they spread the load more, and for DIY’ers, they are less expensive (along with some other advantages).  However, that does NOT mean we think less of torsion axles.  No, they are just different, and they require some differences in mounting.

Torsion axles apply load to the frame in a little different way.  Sure there is the vertical load carrying capacity, but there is also a torque component because of the arms that connect from the wheel spindle to the actual axle cross beam.  As long as we enhance the design to handle that extra load component, it’s all good.

These new trailer plans for torsion axles do just that.

If you are in the market, please compare what other authors say about torsion force distribution in their designs.  If they don’t discuss it, they probably don’t understand it.  Here at Mechanical Elements, you don’t have to worry, because all our plans include the engineering.

Torsion Axles

How A Torsion Axle WorksIn case you are not familiar with some of the technical inner workings of torsion axles, here’s a really quick overview.   Please see the image.  Basically, a square shaft within a larger square tube is constrained by rubber rods.  The image here shows several section views of the inner shaft trying to turn and compressing the rubber in the process.

Within your torsion axle, as the torsion arm moves, the rubber compresses to allow suspension motion.  It’s actually a pretty simple contraption once you get your head around what’s happening.

The rubber is convenient because it has a progressive force curve.  That means when you push a little, it’s relatively soft.  However, when you push hard, the amount it moves decreases with the increasing force.  Some people describe it as being soft for small bumps, and hard for big bumps.  (It’s over generalized, but it does convey the thought.)

What Axles Do We Recommend?

I’m not sure I’d call it a recommendation.  There are a lot of good axles out there, so we’re not particularly biased.  Our only caution is to choose one from a reputable company, and avoid the cheap (quality) ones.

Torsion Style Trailer AxleOur trailer plans for torsion axles are based on the popular Dexter Torflex line.  Of course, other brands will work, but some adjustments to the mounting holes may be required.

Anyway, we have chosen Dexter because:  1) they are widely available for you;  2) they are a good solid company;  and  3) they have a lot of design information available if you want to read it.  Since we have to choose something, that’s what  we’ve done.  Other than that, there is no special reason or connection.

See your local trailer supply to order your axle.  Just use the last page in the plans drawing — it has all the info to order it.  Since they are built per your order, they do take a couple weeks.  In the meantime, get your Wheels and Tires ready.

Customizing The Trailer Plans For Torsion Axles

Again, we encourage customization, and with axles it’s no different.  Just because the max capacity is 3500#, does not mean you must use a 3500# axle.  For instance, to haul your luxury UTV, a 2500# axle might give a smoother ride.  It’s perfectly fine to substitute a lower rating to fit your needs.

Like all the trailer plans from Mechanical Elements these new ones also include options for customization.  Choose what you like, and ignore the others.  It’s pretty simple.

Get your trailer plans today, and get straight to building.

Leave a Comment

Leave a Comment

We Found These For You . . .

Article
Gussets At Beam Intersections On A Trailer Frame
I have a great trailer, but it feels a bit flexy, maybe even rickety . . . How can I strengthen a trailer frame?  How can I stiffen it?

Read The Article

Article
House Crane Winch End
A reader submission showing creativity in his lifting Solutions!  A big  Thank You to “A Treehouse Dweller” for this story about building a house crane to access his tall home.  Of course, this is pretty cool in my opinion.

Read The Article

Article
What Do You Want for 2020
A new day, A new Year, and a new Decade!  We don’t get to say that very often, so it’s kind of cool.  Anyway, as we look to the near future for Mechanical Elements, we want to know what you…

Read The Article

Article
Trailer Plans Download @ Mechanical Elements
At Mechanical Elements, we encourage customers to modify and customize the plans.  That’s how you build the perfect project.  So, what things can you customize?  And what shouldn’t?

Read The Article

Article
Twisting Trailer Safety Chains
Should you twist trailer safety chains to make them shorter?  Certainly twisting them reduces the length so they don’t drag the ground.  That part is good.  However, there are big issues with twisting safety chains?

Read The Article

Product
5x10.5, 2 Place, ATV Trailer Plans

Our smallest ATV and off road vehicle specific trailer plans.  Great for taking 2 ATV’s out, yet small enough for towing without a big truck.  The size also makes for easier storage between the fun trips.

Article
What Is The Right Trailer Axle Size?
Some of your Trailer Plans don’t use a standard axle size.  Why not?  Good question, along with the also common “Why should I special order the trailer axle? There are a few common-ish axle sizes that some manufacturers stock. 

Read The Article

Product

An excellent DIY small trailer project.  These 4 x 8 Utility Trailer Plans sport 2000 lbs. capacity.  The trailer will work hard, yet always be nice to work with.  And, tow it with a smaller car.

Product
5x8 Trailer Plans, 3500# Capacity

Start building your own utility trailer with these 5x8 Trailer Plans.  Blueprints are fully engineered and include options for various needs.  These plans are a perfect map for a great project.

Article
Converting a Trailer
The concept of re-purposing or converting a trailer is absolutely awesome.  My hat’s off to anyone who can find a way to reuse and convert something from end-of-life to new-again.  We need more of that in our world!

Read The Article

Article
DIY Drilling Steel
Need a hole?  Many of our plans require drilled holes, so here are some Tips about drilling in metal, like steel, as well as in wood, and other materials.

Read The Article

Product
6x16 Utility Trailer Plans

Get your 6x16 Utility Trailer Plans here, then build your own 7000 lb. capacity tandem axle workhorse.  These plans include all the details and instructions.  Build it, and make it better than you can buy it.

Article
Dies
While the Tap & Die go hand in hand as threading tools, they’re very different in the way they work.  There are also different tricks for success.  So, let’s talk success tips for making external threads with a die.

Read The Article

Article
Aluminum Trailer Frame Underside
Aluminum is such a great material.  It’s light, strong, and looks sweet to boot.  So, why is there a debate about Aluminum Trailer Frames comparing to others like steel?  Or comparing for beams like with gantry cranes?

Read The Article

Article
Trailer Axle Suspension - Leaf Spring Length
Why choose a long or short leaf spring for your trailer?  They come in different sizes, not only for strength, but also in trailer leaf spring length.  So, why do I want long ones or short ones?  Does it even…

Read The Article

Article
Plus and Minus of Low Trailer Deck Height
To some people a low trailer deck height really matters, to others not so much.  Yet you read about it in trailer descriptions a lot.  So, what are the trade-offs for a low deck?  And how do you achieve it?

Read The Article

Product
4' x 8' - 3500# Torsion Axle Trailer

Fully Engineered Blueprints are just the start with these Torsion Axle Utility Trailer Plans.  With the deck a little larger than tradition, you can put true 4' x 8' cargo inside!  Up to 3500 lbs.

Article
Spring Foot for Gantry Crane Safety
Nothing ruins a pleasant day quite like a goose egg on your head, or a throbbing finger pinch.  Avoiding those things (and, of course, the much more disastrous potential events) is the context of this gantry crane safety article. 

Read The Article

Product
4' x 6'6" Off-Road Adventure Trailer Plans

Build your custom adventure rig with these fully Engineered Off-Road Trailer Plans.  They have a Torsion Axle w/ Big tires to achieve a good ride and High Ground Clearance for your coming 4x4 adventures.

Product
Trailer 5 x 8 - 3500 lbs Torsion Axle

Designed specifically for a Torsion Axle, these 5' x 8' utility trailer plans include a 3500# capacity and many options to choose for making the trailer meet your needs.  And, fully Engineered Blueprints, of course.