Do I want a trailer jack for my little trailer

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wrote:

So I ordered the thing, and shouldn't have been, but was surprised by the shipping charges 62.00. That's 12 dollars for an order 130 dollars or more, and 50 dollars extra because it weighs 200 pounds and was marked " Truck Item "
I could have picked it up in Fort Worth, but the store is an hour or more each way from where my brother lives, and probably 10 dollars gas and 10 dollars sales tax, and it was 40 dollars off what they laughingly call regular price (I think Harbor Freight marks things up just so they can mark them down most of the time, but they do sell everything at full price some of the time.) and the store might just be out of them when I need one, and I really have to start assembling the first day if I am to be done in 5 days, and still have time to go buy plywood, see my sister-in-law's restaurant 50 miles in the other direction, etc. It has 300 parts!
Thanks for all the very helpful advice.
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wrote:

I just put mine on the road a couple months ago. [It took me *several* hours to put it all together- so I hope you have a long weekend planned with your brother.] I picked my jack up at garage sale for $5, but it is like the $20 HF one- http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?ItemnumberA004
Aside from keeping me from looking for a block every time I take the trailer off the car-- it always holds the tongue up-- and makes a fine handle to grab on to drag my (now 3 wheeled) trailer to the car. Then it adjusts up and down over the ball saving my back when it has a load. [not that the tongue is heavy-- but my back is old and has suffered a great deal of abuse over the years]
-snip-

If you've really got to sell it- then you'll probably not use the jack for a single trip. But if I was looking at a 'used once' trailer to buy- that extra gadget would be a good selling point. [If I were you I'd probably also use pressure treated lumber for the bed and rails- $30 more right now- but will make it stand out when you sell it.]

I'd save that $40 for a single trip.
BTW- what kind of car is towing this-- and are you buying a hitch?
What part of the world do you live in that doesn't have small trailers for rent? [at either end of the trip?]
Jim
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wrote:

I was going to stay 5 days or more, and work an hour or two every day on the trailer. At one point, I thought I would buy one in Fort Worth, assemble it in the parking lot, and tow it home. That was before I downloaded the instructions that HF kindly provides and counted the number of parts, 300+!

I forgot about that. I have had back problems too. When I was 34 I hurt my back jogging with cheap shoes (They had the treads up the heel so I thought they were good! But then I saw how thick the soles of good shoes were!) Finally I went to an orthopedist and when the xrays didn't show anything, he seemed to lose interest. I asked if my desk chair might be the problem? No. My bed? No. My car seat? No. But a couple years later I bought another car, and I don't know if that is what made my back better, or just the passage of 4 years.
This time I tried kicking a piece of sidewalk, a triangle about 8x8x4 inches thick, into place. I figured no danger since I was sitting down and kicking sideways. I was wrong. It hurt for months, and 2+ years later, it doesnt' give twinges anymore but still isn't quite right. Losing weight from 240 to 180 helped. And I expect a full recovery in another 2 years. But I should probably get the jack for that reason alone. I guess I will. I ordered the trailer, but I'm not going to Dallas for at least 8 weeks, and I'll be lots of places that sell this thing. ...

'95 Chryself LeBAron. I already have the hitch installed, same one I put on the 84 and 88 Lebaron. I only have to drill two holes to install it. For the middle. The ends use U-bolts to clamp around the bumper struts. It's class 4 iirc, the worst kind, with the lowest capacity, and doesn't even have a square draw bar. Rather it's a flat drawbar. I've used it to carry bicycles with a rack that screws into the drawbar, built a ladder rack to hold one end of the ladder while the windshield and thick rubber held the other end, and also had a separately purchased draw bar welded to the middle 2x2" square tube that is part of the cargo carrier. I've used that to carry sod, and file cabinets, and expect to use it more with the new, lighter cargo carrier.

Not very small, not one way. I don't think any place does. But mine would have to go from Dallas to Baltimore.

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wrote:

Why the hell don't you just rent the trailer, one way? Or if you're only moving 100 pounds of dresser, buy a roofrack for $40? And why, even if you insist on buying a trailer, are you buying a NEW one?
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IIRC, I checked and they don't rent little trailers one-way. I can't tow a big one. They don't rent any open trailers one way.
Smallest U-haul Trailer: 4' x 6' Open Trailer Lightweight and easy to tow. Reserve now
This trailer is available for local rental only it must be returned to the location it was rented from. !!! Capacity
* Max load: 790 lbs. * Gross vehicle weight: 1,500 lbs. max * Empty weight: 710 lbs.
==>710 pounds is too heavy for my car, a LeBaron which like most non-SUV's, has no frame.
Your towing vehicle:
* Must be equipped with a hard top if it is an SUV. U-Haul does not allow any type of sport-utility vehicle not equipped with a hard top to tow U-Haul equipment. * Must have Class 1 tow hitch (1,500 lbs. minimum weight-carrying rating) ==> I left out requirements that I do meet, but I don't and can't meet these.
This was the open trailer with 14? inch walls. The closed trailer only weights 70 pounds more: * Volume: up to 142 cu. ft. * Max load: 1,220 lbs. * Empty weight: 780 lbs.

It's a convertible, and the trip is scheduled so I can keep the top down.
If I had a hardtop, I might put a dresser on the top for 10 or 20 miles, but I would have qualms about 1200 miles. I guess I should concern myself more with the wind even with a trailer. I don't want the dresser blowing off the trailer.
Maybe if not a nice shroud, I should just use a 4'x4' sheet of plywood at an angle, resting on the dresser in the back and the trailer in the front. Is that a good idea?

I looked on Craig's list for Dallas and they had lots of trailers, but all were bigger than my LeBaron can tow. Even if there were, it would be hard to tell the condition from far away. I could go to Dallas and do this, but there might be none then, or I'll spend time running around the city looking at junk trailers, and then I'll have to buy one in Fort Worth when it isn't even 40 dollars off like this is now. And which might be out of stock.
I also looked at NorthernTools.com where it has a folding trailer that looks much like this and it says carries 970 pounds instead of 980, and it's the same price, but the catch is that it doesn't include wheels. The catalog said wheels were on pages 271 to 272, but surprise, none were the right ones. But online they did have wheels but it looked like they were 50 or 100 each, raising the price 100 or 200.
So I have looked into many possibilities.

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wrote:

Nobody else said it, so I will. Call your relative, and have them send you the dimensions and weights of the pieces you want to move. (Just put a bathroom scale under each corner, and add up the numbers. It'll be close enough.) Then call the various pak-mail and similar places, and maybe even a local 'real' shipping company on the other end, and get an estimate of shipping costs. For one or two pieces, even if you have to pay their inflated prices for packing services, shipping the pieces may be as cheap or cheaper than buying a trailer and hauling them yourself. (Don't forget, you also have to put a plate on the trailer, and make sure your insurance covers towing). It'll definitely be less hassle than a long-distance tow with an underpowered marginal tow vehicle. (And I have done several stupid tow jobs, so I know those well.) Of course, see if the pieces come apart in any way, shape, or form. To just go across town, you can sling them across the trunk of your car with blankets for padding, or hopefully your relative has a bigger car for that part.
If you hadn't earlier said that the peices were family heirlooms, I'd say sell or donate them, and use the move money to buy similar items at the local thrift store.
aem sends....
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Why not just rent one?
I would not want a trailer around in the way if I don't plan to use it again.
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I had planned to sell the trailer after I got back. But if I got rid of the spare grill or the spare lawnmowers I would definitely have room for it. And if I still had it, I know I would find uses for it.
BTW, the day after the bulk of this thread I got a new catalog in the mail and the price of the trailer jack dropped by a third, 9 dollars. Maybe that is a sign I should buy one.
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