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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > DIY project for Generator rack

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carringb

Corvallis, OR

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Posted: 09/09/19 07:21am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Snomas wrote:

Sounds like I need to put the generator on the front rack where the battery goes. The generator alone would add about 110# to the tongue wt. How would that affect towing?

I don't want to have to move the generator in and out of the trailer or tow vehicle when on a trip for obvious reasons.


Yeah, this is the only place I'd mount it on a short trailer. More tongue weight generally makes the trailer itself more stable, as long as the truck can take it.

Etrailer has some over-the-tank generator racks which might be a good, easy solution.

How big is your trailer frame? Does the A-frame go through or under the front header, or is it welded to the face of the header? Some smaller trailers have marginal A-frame construction to start with, so you might need to reinforce that before adding the genny.


Bryan

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GrandpaKip

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Posted: 09/09/19 07:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I added a 2’x5’ cargo rack to the rear of our camper. It is attached to the top of the frame between the bumper and the camper. It weighed in at 35 pounds or so. I had a tongue scale set up and put 100 pounds on the rack (2 grandsons). The tongue weight went down only 25 pounds. I put a bike, spare tire, 6’ aluminum ladder, patio mat and sewer tote on it. I weighed each one and the total came out to just over 100 pounds.
It’s been about 4 years now and still works well. I have never experienced any sway, with our previous Frontier or the present Silverado. With the small amount of unloading, tongue weight is between 12% and 14%, depending on loading.
And, GASP!, it’s on a Lippert frame.


Kip
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SoundGuy

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Posted: 09/09/19 07:54am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You'd do well to reinforce your trailer bumper with a Mount-n-Lock Safety Struts Kit. That said, putting all that much weight at the far rear of such a short trailer will unduly unload the trailer's gross tongue weight. Bottom line - regardless that some do it anyway a genset doesn't belong at the far rear of any trailer. [emoticon]


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2manytoyz

Central FL

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Posted: 09/09/19 01:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Of course it's been done successfully. Here's a link to the related Google images on this topic. Click any of them for more details. Whether it can be done to YOUR camper, is another story.

https://www.google.com/search?q=generato........hVRiOAKHSGYB48Q_AUIEygC&biw=1536&bih=770

My last camper was a 25' Rockwood Ultralite. I could have added one to the back of mine. Here's how...

This is the frame of that TT:

[image]

I'm not sure who's camper has a frame and/or rear bumper made as thinly as pop cans, but I've never seen one.

The square tube on the back is actually welded to the I-beam frame. I can stand on the middle of it, doesn't flex.

[image]

I would simply add a piece of angle iron under the square tube, and weld it along the tube, and to the frame rails. This way the weight can be supported, and more importantly, stop the twisting action of having a generator hanging off the back.

You can weigh your camper, then the tongue weight, then have someone stand on the rear bumper to see how it affects the tongue weight. If you're still in the 10% range, good to go. The rear axle is not halfway between the tongue, and the rear bumper. 200 lbs on the back doesn't equal 200 lbs less on the tongue.

Some states allow triple towing. People add hitches to the back of their rigs. Same idea...

YMMV, but it has been done successfully with other rigs.


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Lynnmor

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Posted: 09/09/19 01:59pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

2manytoyz wrote:



My last camper was a 25' Rockwood Ultralite. I could have added one to the back of mine. Here's how...

This is the frame of that TT:

[image]

I'm not sure who's camper has a frame and/or rear bumper made as thinly as pop cans, but I've never seen one.



Take a look at those welds where the vertical piece meets the top & bottom pieces. If I am not mistaken, it appears to be just the type of flimsy frame that should be avoided. I would rather have a real I-beam, not something pieced together.





Snomas

Sedona, AZ

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Posted: 09/09/19 04:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

2manytoyz wrote:

Of course it's been done successfully. Here's a link to the related Google images on this topic. Click any of them for more details. Whether it can be done to YOUR camper, is another story.

https://www.google.com/search?q=generato........hVRiOAKHSGYB48Q_AUIEygC&biw=1536&bih=770

My last camper was a 25' Rockwood Ultralite. I could have added one to the back of mine. Here's how...

This is the frame of that TT:

[image]

I'm not sure who's camper has a frame and/or rear bumper made as thinly as pop cans, but I've never seen one.

The square tube on the back is actually welded to the I-beam frame. I can stand on the middle of it, doesn't flex.

[image]

I would simply add a piece of angle iron under the square tube, and weld it along the tube, and to the frame rails. This way the weight can be supported, and more importantly, stop the twisting action of having a generator hanging off the back.

You can weigh your camper, then the tongue weight, then have someone stand on the rear bumper to see how it affects the tongue weight. If you're still in the 10% range, good to go. The rear axle is not halfway between the tongue, and the rear bumper. 200 lbs on the back doesn't equal 200 lbs less on the tongue.

Some states allow triple towing. People add hitches to the back of their rigs. Same idea...

YMMV, but it has been done successfully with other rigs.


I tend to agree that with your idea of welding a continuous angle iron across the back of the 4 " bumper. The generator I am looking at only weighs 100# and I could also do a test to keep the tongue wt in the 10% range.


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whiteeye42

Rock Springs Wyoming

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Posted: 09/09/19 08:56pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

What i did was i bought a trailer hitch for a motor home and cut it down so it would fit between the frame of my trailer and then welded it in then made my rack out of 2x3 angle iron which it 1/4 " thick made it he same size as my generator and mine weights in at 240 pounds and have never had a problem but if you do get it done get a good welder to attach to your frame and not the cheap bumper


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valhalla360

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Posted: 09/10/19 05:57am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

2manytoyz wrote:


The square tube on the back is actually welded to the I-beam frame. I can stand on the middle of it, doesn't flex.


Pop cans are pretty strong as long as they are in perfect condition but the second you crack them open, they lose a lot of strength.

Shape can provide a lot of strength...but by using a very thin layer...any corrosion or minor dents and it can lose a tremendous amount of strength.

Result: You mount the rack, everything seems fine...2-3yrs later corrosion on the inside of the bumper weakens it to the point that it fails. Or simply you crank down too much and the mounting bracket dents the bumper wall.


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Bert Ackerman

Palm Beach

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Posted: 09/10/19 06:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lynnmor wrote:

2manytoyz wrote:



My last camper was a 25' Rockwood Ultralite. I could have added one to the back of mine. Here's how...

This is the frame of that TT:

[image]

I'm not sure who's camper has a frame and/or rear bumper made as thinly as pop cans, but I've never seen one.



Take a look at those welds where the vertical piece meets the top & bottom pieces. If I am not mistaken, it appears to be just the type of flimsy frame that should be avoided. I would rather have a real I-beam, not something pieced together.


Glad to see the RV forum bumper thread foolishness and drama is still alive and well in 2019, which is not exclusive to RVnet.

What is the criteria that determines that a manufactured beam is flimsy and somehow weaker than a rolled beam of the exact same dimensions? Why, because its welded together from 3 pieces of sheet? Personal opinion or did someone run the structural calculations.

All the structural members in the picture below are manufactured by welding sheet together.

[image]

And below they hold up a 25T overhead crane.

[image]

Where are all the rigs that have true cold rolled beams for frame rails? They are few and far between, and even then it's going to be what is known as an "MH" beam, not exactly a Wide Flange. Very few RV manufacturers use them, and those that do only use them on the largest units.

I used to use a bolt on Curt bracket on a the factory bumper of a Rockwood similar to 2manytoy's, and carried full coolers or firewoodand other gear on a 2' X 4'cargo platform thousands of miles over 7 years. Never bent anything, cracked a weld, or caused a catastrophe despite the welded together frame and 12 Ga fabricated tube RV bumper. I never added anything to it either such as additional reinforcement.

Granted some of these manufacturers will take one of those tubes and butt weld it to the end of the frame rail, with no gussets, angles, or anything else. But some will notch the frame rail to receive it, and others will reinforce the connection with gussets or angles. Some will do both. Some will also use thinner bumper tubes.

Blanket statements based on nothing mean little.

BarneyS

S.E. Lower Michigan

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Posted: 09/10/19 09:13am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Geeeze! How many times do we have to scroll through the same picture!
Barney


2004 Sunnybrook Titan 30FKS TT
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Not towing now.
Former tow vehicles were 2016 Ram 2500 CTD, 2002 Ford F250, 7.3 PSD


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