Saturday, October 13, 2012

Motorcycle Cargo Trailer Project Part 1

As promised here is part one of my motorcycle cargo project.  This will be a multi-part posting of the entire project from beginning to end showing you all that it took to build the motorcycle trailer that was just destroyed last week in the fire here at the Tinker's Workshop.  See the earlier posting about info on the fire if you are interested in the terrible details.  
  So I want to try and put that all behind me now and start showing you another great project that I really enjoyed designing and building from scratch.  The whole idea for the trailer was to make a design that would look good behind my 2008 Honda Goldwing.  This bike is very smooth looking and so I thought the trailer should also be the same way.  I would start with a small flat bed trailer and make the body of the trailer out of fiberglass with fenders built into the body.  So here is how it all started.  

The first attempt at the design looked slick but had flaws in it.  Mainly here the fender wells were way to deep to be usable so much work had to be done to make the design more workable.

 A lot was learned from the early computer models to iron out the bugs in the design.  It's easy enough to make something look good but if you cannot build it after your have designed it the project is doomed from the start.  The red design here was starting to take shape with better fender wells and a nice rear tail light setup.  I still wanted to get a rear bumper figured out at this point.

The plan at this point was to make a fiberglass rear bumper.  Another bad idea as it would look good and could be made but offered little if any real protection against even a minor bump.  Hate to have to repaint the trailer for just a minor scratch on the bumper.  The blue and red trailers here are the same trailer before and after sanding and shaping.  The red looks a lot more professionally finished and so this was my plan for the design.  The blue box shaped body could be fiber glassed without the additional work of sanding and shaping but it would look like a lot of other poorly built motorcycles trailers that are on the road.  Not what I wanted at all.

 Next in the design came the computer models that I created using Blender 3D software.  This is great for getting your ideas across to show how your project would look once it has been completed.  I was working on a chrome plated steel tubed bumper that would look good, be easy to make, and offer real protection from damage to the trailer body.  These images were concepts of  different designs that all looked good but again it came down to being able to build them.  The straight bumper won the design award as it fit all of my requirements.  But even at that, later on I would find that the bumper would be one of the more expensive parts on the trailer just because it was chrome.  But with it being chrome it just makes the back of the trailer that much more professional looking.  Everyone loved the look as much as I did.

 So that's about all I have time for today in part one of the motorcycle trailer build.  More will be posted soon (hopefully daily).  Check back here and let me know what you think of this project as I am always happy to hear from my readers.  Enjoy.


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