Transporting the Locost

The problem

Having decided that powder coating was what I wanted for my chassis, I started looking around for a suitable establishment. A search on Google found me a local powder coating firm in Sible Headingham, near Colchester, which was about 30 miles from home.

I then had to consider how I was going to get this great big mass of steel tubing there and back without mishap. I looked into trailer hire - 25 per day, plus a huge deposit, and "Oh, your 2-litre saloon won't be big enough to manage that size trailer, Sir!". On to Plan B: look into van hire - 50 per day, plus an even bigger deposit, and then the fun of getting the chassis in and out of it.

The solution

I didn't want to spend 100 with nothing to show at the end, so I decided that I would try to build a trailer to carry the chassis, using the running gear from my little utility trailer. As the suspension units of the trailer are rated at 250Kg per pair I was not concerned about overloading them! I spent around 35 on 2 lengths of 50mm x 50mm steel tube with a 3mm wall thickness. Another 10 or so on fasteners, etc. completed the spending.

I welded location pieces on both the main bar and the cross-member so that they always fit accurately. This means that the U-bolts only have to hold the pieces together. Two lengths of 19mm steel tube act as braces to prevent the cross-member swivelling. The resulting transporter ended up looking remarkably like a boat trailer (from which I had nicked a few layout ideas).

The front of the Locost chassis was held down by a U-shaped bracket bolted through the main bar, with foam rubber strip used to prevent damage. At the rear I welded on a couple of steel hoops to take the hooks from the ratchet tie-down.

The second picture shows the "donor vehicle" in the background - my little utility trailer that I use to carry those odds and end that I don't want in my car (or won't fit). The running gear was put back shortly after this photo was taken, as the transporter had done its work. The frame was dismantled and put up in the rafters of my garage. I spent around 50 - but now I have a big trailer for unusual loads!