The Superwinch S3500 plugs...
The Superwinch S3500 plugs into a spud welded to the trailer. When inserted all the way, a pin keeps it there. The Superwinch mounting plate was used here. This allows the winch to be used easily in other applications as well as being secured in a protected area. The S3500 is strong enough to pull a broken race car up on the trailer.
Now that we have been hitched, let's tie one on. More to the point, let's tie one race car on the trailer properly. In Part 2 we covered race car tie-downs on the trailer. The car should be tied with four straps, at least two of them being ratchet types. Virgil Brown of M&R explained that with only two tie-downs, one front and one rear, a car can shift its weight during an emergency maneuver. This occurrence can be severe enough to cause lasting damage to the roof of the tow vehicle as well as to the race car. So, four tie-downs are the order of the day.
But if you are young and dumb--as I once was--and only use two tie-downs, never use a come-along as a tie-down. Use it to get the car in place on the trailer if necessary. Then use a ratchet tie-down and a chain. The come-along is designed to pull a load. It's not designed for impact strength of the type felt during road jarring. I have seen the center spool collapse on these things. When that happens, a lot of things get loose.
I'm older and some say smarter now. I do understand my race car might be worth the cost of four ratchet tie-downs. The original M&R tie-downs have seen a lot of sun and weather. These new tie-downs make me feel better. The old ones will be used to strap down tool boxes, tires, and so on.
Speaking of tie-downs, the question becomes where and how they should be attached to the trailer. Initially I had placed M&R's D-rings at the front and rear of the trailer. They were arranged to pull the car parallel to the trailer. At the rear, my folding ramps sit on top of the tie-downs. This is not desirable. So, additional D-rings have been welded to the side of the trailer. This splayed out the attachments from the car, which I think is preferable to a straight back pull. Atthe front, I also welded additional D-rings to the trailer to splay out the attachments.
Welding the M&R D-rings on...
Welding the M&R D-rings on the sides of the trailer gets the straps out from under the ramps. This mounting also splays out the straps for more secure fastening of the car. New M&R ratchet straps have replaced the older, weathered ones. D-rings weremounted in a similar fashion and welded at the front of the trailer.
Our Superwinch S3500 has performed quite well for us. It has pulled more than one bent race car up on the trailer. I used the Superwinch mounting plate to make a plug-in attachment to the trailer. Easy on easy off--making secure storage no-brainer.
I really like the high-mounted lights on the tire rack. They never get knocked off there. To satisfy legal requirements, I have added lights to the rear fenders. Also, there are now reflector strips at the rear of the trailer.
I really like this trailer. With at least 400 pounds of tongue weight, it tows well. Modifieds need to be forward, while Street Stocks with more forward weight can be shifted to the rear a bit. There is one change I wish I'd made but never have. The fold-over ramps could have been 4 feet long instead of 3. I was cheap and didn't want to buy another length of purling. At times this would have made loading a low race car easier. All things considered, though, if I needed another open trailer, I would build another just like it. Contact Sleepy at sleepy.gomez @primedia.com.
I still like the original...
I still like the original high positioning of the lights. They are highly visible and they don't get torn off. However, there is a case to be made for lights to be mounted rearward. So, to appease the constabulary, I have used flush-mounted lights on the rear fenders. They are mounted high on the fender to protect them as much as possible. When drilling through the fender this way, use a template for accuracy, along with a short drill bit.
This long bolt with swing-out...
This long bolt with swing-out ramps is necessary to allow the ramp to be picked up and swung in. The bolt floats with the ramp.
1/4 x 4 x 4-in steel angle:
1 piece @ 78 in
2 pieces @ 16 ft
1/4 x 2 x 4-in steel channel:
1 piece @ 70 in
2 pieces @ 85 in
10-gauge x 1 1/2-in x 1 1/2-in square steel tubing:
6 pieces @ 77 1/2 in
2 pieces @ 72 in
2 pieces @ 71 1/2 in
4 pieces @ 78 in
2 pieces @ 12 in
1/8 x 2 x 2-in steel angle:
4 pieces @ 16 in
0.065 x 8 x 2 1/2-in purling:
4 pieces @ 16 ft
2 pieces @ 72 in
4 pieces @ 44 in
1 piece @ 78 in