truck folks..........weight distribution, thoughts?

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by tthomass, Dec 8, 2006.

  1. tthomass

    tthomass LawnSite Gold Member
    from N. VA
    Posts: 3,497

    Okay!

    So I've got the cab and chasis of a '02 Intl 4300 26k GVW. The wheelbase is 254" and the cab to center of axle is about 200".

    Originally the truck had a 24' box on the back so the frame extends well beyond the rear axle.

    Note: I'm modeling my truck after ETWMAN & WALTERO with the box behind the cab and then the Switch-N-Go system after that.

    ETWMAN & WALTERO both have 4' wide boxes behind the cab and then the 14' bed behind that. That setup requires cutting the frame just after the rear axle.

    NOW:
    I've got the extra frame there and I could put it to use.

    MEANING:
    Instead of a 4' wide box I COULD put a 5' possibly 6' wide box behind the cab. That would be "super awsome" storage capability.

    ISSUE:
    That causes the Switch-N-Go system to be pused further back. I am concerned with being able to carry as much weight due to possibly overloading the rear axle while not even reaching GVW. Also just the thought of having the weight that much further back and wondering about effects on handling. Then again, it is just a foot or maybe 2 feet further back.

    THOUGHT:
    Truck originally designed with weight back there............hence the 24' box BUT that weight was spread over a 24' distnace. My dump body is 14' and my drop box is 15' so the weight is more contained.

    This is a logically a potential issue but am I just thinking too much physics?:hammerhead:

    -Gravel Rat.......thoughts?
     
  2. tthomass

    tthomass LawnSite Gold Member
    from N. VA
    Posts: 3,497

    As for a hitch I guess I would be screwed? I don't know if one could be fabricated some way to reach that far and not be weak..........idk
     
  3. etwman

    etwman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,454

    Torch the frame off right behind the rear springs shackles. Don't leave any extra frame hanging over the back. I'm serious about this too. The switch-n-go is a dead lift system. The more weight the rear axle can absorb when lifting the better you'll be. The guys at Buck's Fab will tell you the exact same thing. You don't want to run the risk of bending a frame that's hanging over. A 26k GVW is usually not a double re-inforced frame and can't take the weight (15k) in dead lift situation if its overhanging. A 4' box is plenty, you won't need anymore. I can give you the connection to the guy who made ours and walters, he did a great job. Whatever can't go in there can go in the dump body. Get a fold down side body first.

    Not too mention the thing will ride horribly.

    Kiss a good hitch setup good bye if you leave that frame on there too.
     
  4. tthomass

    tthomass LawnSite Gold Member
    from N. VA
    Posts: 3,497

    Good point on the lifting with extended frame.

    With your cut frame did you have to do anything particular for a trailer setup? My concern is that the tongue on my trailers may be too short.
     
  5. etwman

    etwman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,454

    It should work fine for pulling a trailer. With any trailer you have to watch jacknifing but we haven't had a problem. I think we have 5' tonques on our trailers.

    Northertool.com on those boxes. I think the most they had was 6' which was plenty long for us.
     
  6. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    etwman has already answered it for you chop those frame tails off and have a tow apron made for the back. If you had too much overhang on the back you possibly could seesaw on the rear axle the front wheels lift off the ground pulling on a heavy box. That would be one hell of a ride if your on any kind of slope the front of the truck would swing side to side like a dogs tail.

    As etwman said the switch and go is like a dead lift system there is no rail tails to take the weight as the box is being pulled onto the truck. You may want to install some timbrens to keep the rear from squatting when pulling on a box.

    For more storage on the truck you can have a toolbox behind the cab and some tool boxes on the side of the trucks frame.

    When dad and I used to haul derlict vehicals dads 1 ton truck was set up like a oil field truck it had a winch deck on it with a roller type tail. Pulling on a heavy old land yacht the front wheels would bounce off the ground. The truck only had a 8000lb winch but it had enough power to see saw the truck on the rear axle pulling a heavy load over the back.
     
  7. tthomass

    tthomass LawnSite Gold Member
    from N. VA
    Posts: 3,497

    I started looking into the timbrens a couple weeks ago.......you're right and I like the idea. I'll run it as is for a while but I'm sure in the near future I will install them.

    As for the front of the truck lifting I know of a story where a guy driv'n a tri-axle roll off lifted a container that was full to the top with concrete.......you could almost walk under the front of the truck. He pulled it on, the front came down and he woo hoo'd and he haw'd on down the road!

    For the underbody boxes........Northern Tool has dropped to a 60" but at Tractor Supply Co. I found 87" boxes "on sale" for $448 each.....diamond plate too so I'm sure I'll be going with them.
     
  8. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    Go with all aluminum tool boxes I don't know if you live in the rust belt but we found those steel toolboxes use under truck decks get rust into them pretty quickly.

    Even look into having a local metal fabrication shop build you a behind the cab tool bin. They can build you what ever you need to fit your needs.
     
  9. tthomass

    tthomass LawnSite Gold Member
    from N. VA
    Posts: 3,497

    Isn't the diamond plate polished aluminum? Thats what I'm going for.......no steel.

    -The same as etwman's trucks..........the box (diamond plate probably) behind the cab I'm hav'n fabricated. One thing different is my box's construction. The door is actually going to be the ramp and the floor will be heavy grade mesh for easy cleaning/fall through.........1/4" size holes.
     
  10. etwman

    etwman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,454

    Be careful with that. That was my original idea was a big fold down door. The only kicker is when your in tight areas there's no room to fold down a huge door. Its alot easier to have the ramp in under your box and slide it out when you need it. Plus you can actually take it off and use it on the site if need be. To open two 24" swing doors is alot easier and quicker.

    Our floors in both boxes are mesh grate so we can wash them and have stuff fall through for cleaning.

    I'm telling you, unless you have some awesome cheap fabricator have the guy that made Walters and mine make one for you. He's reasonable, one man operation, very good welder, and has made three now so he has all the notes and has worked the flaws out. Its a bolt on box so it can be manufactured without your truck even being there. Come up for the day when its done and set it on, bolt it fast.

    It's totally up to you though. I just know how many things we changed on the first one to finally get it where we wanted to and strength wise as well. The frame on these big trucks flex because they are designed too. You have to take that into account when streghening these boxes with gussets in the right places or the thing won't last a week.

    Just some things to think about.
     

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