PDA

View Full Version : Any tips for towing your smoker trailer?


Czarbecue
03-10-2018, 07:49 PM
In about two weeks I will be towing my Bandera trailer to Georgia from Texas. First time it will be going more than 10 miles so hopefully my welds holds up :heh:

The trip is roughly 875 miles to the destination. Do you guys take out the temp gauges on the doors? Remove the grates? The only thing I have in mind so far is to bungee down the chamber and firebox doors\lids. Yes, I have a spare and the bungees over the wood box.

Westx
03-10-2018, 07:58 PM
That would be all I would do. If your stopping someplace for the night you might consider someway to to lock the doors on them as people have been known to steal the grates to sell for scrap. Also if you think it might rain on the trip I would wrap them up good in a heavy duty tarp to keep water out of them.

Frank Mahovlich
03-10-2018, 08:05 PM
Make sure to pay great attention to your wheel bearings to assure they are sufficiently greased. Wheel bearing roadside failure is a costly, not to mention dangerous, proposition.

Czarbecue
03-10-2018, 08:10 PM
Make sure to pay great attention to your wheel bearings to assure they are sufficiently greased. Wheel bearing roadside failure is a costly, not to mention dangerous, proposition.

Hmm, good point. I greased the bearings on my kayak trailer a few years ago. I built the smoker on top of an 18 year old trailer and just replaced the tires from that long ago too. I didn't even think of the wheel bearings.

Hoss
03-10-2018, 08:16 PM
Definitely break down those hubs,degrease,inspect seals,bearings and races( cups and cones) replace if they show any wear.Regrease,reassemble.It will be well worth your time and money. If you have the type with the grease fitting on the hubcap,just squirting it full of grease will not suffice.Break that hub ALL the way down,clean,inspect,repair or replace worn parts.ONLY then will you be good to go.

-Chris-
03-10-2018, 08:45 PM
Definitely break down those hubs,degrease,inspect seals,bearings and races( cups and cones) replace if they show any wear.Regrease,reassemble.It will be well worth your time and money. If you have the type with the grease fitting on the hubcap,just squirting it full of grease will not suffice.Break that hub ALL the way down,clean,inspect,repair or replace worn parts.ONLY then will you be good to go.

This, full bearing/race sets are $25 each in the common sizes. Cheap insurance.

homesmoke
03-10-2018, 09:58 PM
Couple of tips. You may be very experienced with trailers, but here are my essentials.
Bearings, races, seals, and grease in proper maintenance. Confirm that grease caps or Buddy Bearings are secure in hubs.
Lock on both the receiver and on the hitch.
Jack and spare made available without unloading tow vehicle on side of road.
Take a 1 square foot piece of plywood with you. Soft ground = sinking jack.
I carry a spare hub with races, bearings, and seals installed, complete with lug nuts.
Confirm tire pressure in spare.
Maintain proper tire pressure. Lots of heat buildup on long runs at highway speeds.

Stop more often with a trailer. Check safety chains and that the lights function properly. Shake hitch to confirm that loosening has not occurred.
Feel tires and hubs for abnormal overheating.

Good Luck and safe travels.

Beentown
03-10-2018, 10:26 PM
Bungie cord all doors shut.

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

homesmoke
03-10-2018, 10:51 PM
Hey Czarbeque, If you are crossing over Louisiana on I-20, let me know and I will pm you my contact information. Never know when you might need a helping hand if you break down.
Figured you might run East on 80 to I-20. Have family in Frisco, and make that run several times a year.

ebijack
03-11-2018, 06:16 AM
A couple suggestions. Besides what is mentioned.
EVERY time you stop anywhere. Touch each hub with the back of a finger/fingers. It only takes a minute. If there is any heat/warmth you have a problem starting. Best early warning system there is. You just have to remember to do your part. :doh:
Make sure the jack/jacks you have are able to get under your trailer axle if you had a flat. Most jacks are a bit to tall. Been there done that.
Look/watch/check your trailer tires in your mirrors while driving. I was able to spot the steel belt coming apart on one of my trailer tires before it blew on the Xway. Crept into a rest stop. Then I found neither of my 2 jacks would fit under the axle. Bottle or scissor jack. Luckily one of my tournament partners was behind me and he had a jack that fit.
Bring a few/couple 4X4 sections to block/chock wheels on vehicle and trailer if/when required.
Bring a quality breaker bar with proper deep sockets to get lug nuts loose. Star wrenches are OK, but if you do have a problem. The heat that builds up can really lock the nuts up tight. And only enough leverage will free them.
If you haven't installed LED trailer lights. Do it. Well worth the cheap investment and you shouldn't have to mess with them ever again. And no unwanted police stops due to lights being out. Even more so when you are from out of state.

thunderalley3
03-11-2018, 06:56 AM
Adding to what has been said, especially the wheel bearing service, watch your speed. I am not sure what size tires you have on your trailer but the smaller the tire the faster the wheel speed and the hotter the tires and bearings get. A 12 inch tire at 75 mph won't last long, especially if the weather is warm. A 12 inch trailer tire will make roughly 3 times more rotations than the average car tire at the same speed.

Also most trailer tires are only rated for 55 mph. there are a few that are 65 mph, and now I see a couple companies claiming an 80 mph speed rating but due to the construction method of trailer tires they build extreme heat. They are built to take heavy side loads with twisting and this leads to heat build up.

Kmm
03-11-2018, 09:03 AM
A few other things to inspect:
Safety chains...give a good look at those bolts attaching the chains to your trailer frame. If you need to replace, be sure to use a minimum of grade 5 hardware.
Ball hitch......inspect and replace any worn or severely rusted hardware. Remove any rust on the trailer ball and ball receiver to insure proper electrical grounding.
Springs and spring shackles....some manufacturers use rubber isolation bushings in the shackles. If your trailer has these, there is a very good chance after 18 years, they are getting a bit rotten and will need replaced. Alternatively if the current bushings are metal on metal, clean, inspect bushings and hardware for damage and excessive wear, (replace as required). Be sure to lube with a marine quality grease upon reassembling.
Inspect the leaf springs, replacing broken or damaged leaves as required.
Finnaly, closely inspect the trailer's crossmembers for corrosion and cracks.
Looking forward to reading how the trip goes.

thunderalley3
03-11-2018, 09:31 AM
Just another note is when you pack your wheel bearings pick a quality grease. I tow my toyhauler about 40K a year and I pull the wheels and go through everything every May. I have used a number of different greases over the years and I have found that the Timken red grease is the absolute best. I see less bearing wear and the residual grease left when I do the service is much greater as it does not break down as quickly as some of the others. I have used grease where the bearings are almost dry at 12 months, but the red Timken grease always has some left in the bearings.

Czarbecue
03-24-2018, 07:31 PM
Slight change of plans so the Bandera trailer will be going during April. Hauling my other trailer with boxes instead.

Heading to storage:

https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180325/1b9f964648a0e803ae5092ac6a0bfaa2.jpg

lankster35
03-24-2018, 11:23 PM
Having a complete spare with hub assembly is the way to go.......Saved me once on a boat trailer.

Couple of tips. You may be very experienced with trailers, but here are my essentials.
Bearings, races, seals, and grease in proper maintenance. Confirm that grease caps or Buddy Bearings are secure in hubs.
Lock on both the receiver and on the hitch.
Jack and spare made available without unloading tow vehicle on side of road.
Take a 1 square foot piece of plywood with you. Soft ground = sinking jack.
I carry a spare hub with races, bearings, and seals installed, complete with lug nuts.
Confirm tire pressure in spare.
Maintain proper tire pressure. Lots of heat buildup on long runs at highway speeds.

Stop more often with a trailer. Check safety chains and that the lights function properly. Shake hitch to confirm that loosening has not occurred.
Feel tires and hubs for abnormal overheating.

Good Luck and safe travels.

TravelingJ
03-24-2018, 11:24 PM
What roof rack is that? Yakima megawarrior?

Czarbecue
03-24-2018, 11:56 PM
What roof rack is that? Yakima megawarrior?

I wish... I got the generic version for 1/4 of the price...

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B013COCXDC/

TravelingJ
03-25-2018, 12:02 AM
eff. Wish I had seen that earlier. I picked up the load warrior last week. How do you like yours? I could always return the one I have...

Czarbecue
03-25-2018, 12:32 AM
Itís pretty awesome. I got it for our Brooklyn trip in winter 2016. I strapped down a 5í cargo hitch bag with room to spare. Who needs a hearse?

https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180325/82f3c6a64f7b4b9e8e8cd51fef0f7669.jpg

https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180325/c0ea1dd6f2a45a979a5bc8cd6fdc2619.jpg

Beentown
03-25-2018, 07:43 AM
Bungees and more bungees. If I am staying the night somewhere I lock the grates in the bed of my truck. Crackheads will take anything metal.

Having your trailer on a trailer is an option too. Lol

https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180325/e6ae397421ed71d9e65bcf31d7a30e27.jpg

Sid Post
03-25-2018, 08:03 AM
Bungees and more bungees. If I am staying the night somewhere I lock the grates in the bed of my truck. Crackheads will take anything metal.

That's part of the reason I will add pad lock tabs to mine if I ever build it. Never had trailer tires stolen but, you would be amazed at the stuff they will take out of the bed of a pickup (or put in there) and what they will do to trailers in general.

Czarbecue
03-25-2018, 10:23 AM
Must be a bad ass winch to get that Shirley on a trailer.

Sid Post
03-25-2018, 06:09 PM
Must be a bad ass winch to get that Shirley on a trailer.

Or you can cheat like me and park the trailer in a ditch or on the downhill side of a sloped driveway. :wink:

Czarbecue
03-30-2018, 03:42 AM
Just got back from Georgia and had to leave my kayak trailer there. Suffered a nasty blowout 40 miles into Louisiana on the trailer. Someone stopped by after about an hour or so and gave me a block of wood to increase the height of my jack because I am a dummy and thought I could use the one in my car for my trailer. Lesson learned.

I was doing 75mph because that's what Texas roads are allowed but went 65 after the blow out. Scared straight? You betcha.

Also stopped in Tuscaloosa around 8pm to get some dinner with the wife at Waffle House. Mid way through the dinner the cook told me it looked like someone was trying to get into my trailer. The diner was empty so I was the only one running out to scare two dudes away. I really wished I had some backup because all I had was a fork in my hand. Luckily they only made out with my license plate and bent the door to my trailer. Who steals trailer license plates, anyway?

We left at 7am from McKinney, TX and arrived in Loganville, GA at 2am. It took 19 hours between the tire blow out, two sit down lunches, four gas stops, and a time change.

Interstate moving is no fun.

Jason TQ
03-30-2018, 04:11 AM
Just got back from Georgia and had to leave my kayak trailer there. Suffered a nasty blowout 40 miles into Louisiana on the trailer. Someone stopped by after about an hour or so and gave me a block of wood to increase the height of my jack because I am a dummy and thought I could use the one in my car for my trailer. Lesson learned.

I was doing 75mph because that's what Texas roads are allowed but went 65 after the blow out. Scared straight? You betcha.

Also stopped in Tuscaloosa around 8pm to get some dinner with the wife at Waffle House. Mid way through the dinner the cook told me it looked like someone was trying to get into my trailer. The diner was empty so I was the only one running out to scare two dudes away. I really wished I had some backup because all I had was a fork in my hand. Luckily they only made out with my license plate and bent the door to my trailer. Who steals trailer license plates, anyway?

We left at 7am from McKinney, TX and arrived in Loganville, GA at 2am. It took 19 hours between the tire blow out, two sit down lunches, four gas stops, and a time change.

Interstate moving is no fun.

So youíre back in TX? I might have read that first part wrong. Did you move to Loganville? Not too far down the road. The bbq place I used to work is there. Blowouts suck. Iíve had two and itís not fun when rolling down the highway :-D

pjtexas1
03-30-2018, 05:57 AM
Idiots are everywhere. Glad you stopped them before they took anything valuable.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk

Beentown
03-30-2018, 07:05 AM
At least all is safe. Get your CCW.

One thing to watch is most of these trailers have bias ply tires. 65 mph max.

Czarbecue
03-30-2018, 09:54 AM
So youíre back in TX? I might have read that first part wrong. Did you move to Loganville? Not too far down the road. The bbq place I used to work is there. Blowouts suck. Iíve had two and itís not fun when rolling down the highway :-D


Weíre having a pod shipped to Atlanta but itís too small for our crap. So weíre doing a multi-trip since I have two trailers to move as well. And yes, Foggy Bottom is about a 5 minute drive. Looking forward to fried ribs every week!

Rib Rub
03-30-2018, 05:20 PM
Make sure you have a few spare tires!!

Czarbecue
04-03-2018, 03:59 AM
Drove my Bandera trailer from McKinney to Dallas yesterday and I was on edge. Rolling out from the storage unit I had a somewhat decorative wood box support piece fall off.

So thatís questionable weld #1.

That put me in a total paranoid state because now Iím thinking the cooker will lunge forward and crash into my car every time I make a hard stop. But the rest of the welds held, although I was rather chicken chit and took the city streets instead of the highway. Not sure if thatís better since itís nothing but start/stop traffic with questionable roads conditions and pot holes. All at 35 mph.

For the locals, I took Custer from 380 to Belt Line, Belt Line to Hillcrest, Hillcrest to Forest Ln. Took me 90 minutes in mid morning traffic. The cooker will stay at my brotherís until I can come fetch it in May.

https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180403/19a8e0ea08393505fe60674c2c1b5758.jpg

pjtexas1
04-03-2018, 06:02 AM
Scary stuff! I'd be talking to the guy that welded it for you. :heh: just kidding. Glad you made it safely.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk

Pig_Farmer
04-03-2018, 07:41 AM
Here is what happens when your hubs are neglected. This was on my travel trailer near Tulsa, OK. had to leave the trailer there for repairs. Had to change the entire axle. Now I grease the hubs every spring. 157181

Hotch
04-03-2018, 07:54 AM
Here is what happens when your hubs are neglected. This was on my travel trailer near Tulsa, OK. had to leave the trailer there for repairs. Had to change the entire axle. Now I grease the hubs every spring. 157181

Yes sir, Bearing Buddy is your friend!! Best thing ever for trailer hubs.
Best $30.00 spent!! :mrgreen:

Czarbecue
04-03-2018, 09:04 AM
I bought a bearing ďfriendĒ thing from Harbor Freight. It didnít fit my hub. But apparently the real buddies come in two different sizes. Iíll just order both and return the one that doesnít work.

Hotch
04-03-2018, 09:12 AM
I bought a bearing ďfriendĒ thing from Harbor Freight. It didnít fit my hub. But apparently the real buddies come in two different sizes. Iíll just order both and return the one that doesnít work.
I would only use the S/S one for a boat trailer.
Yep, get the real deal!! :mrgreen:

Czarbecue
04-29-2018, 06:43 PM
An update... and a bad omen of sorts...

I flew back from Atlanta to pick up whatís left of our house stuff and to tow my Bandera trailer home. I didnít have time to mess with the bearings but did have the tools and grease with me in case I need to do a quick greasing at a gas station or something.

But of course at 9pm when I was hooking up the trailer the lights wouldnít turn on. I was pissed. It was working before! I made a quick drive to OíReillyís and paid a ransom of $65 for an LED light kit. I installed everything pretty easily except the ground wire. The damn kit didnít include the necessary screw and eyelet to ground it. I looked through my tool bag (hah) but had no luck finding a replacement. I then try to just tape it to some of the exposed steel on the trailer. Still no lights!

At this point my confidence was shot. I still wasnít sure if it was the trailer lights or my wire on the car. Home Depot and OíReilly already closed at 10pm and it was getting pretty close to 11 pm. So I threw in the towel and left Dallas Bandera-less with no sleep.

Maybe trying again in six months. The UDS will have to bear all of cooking duties for now.

Blythewood BBQ'er
04-29-2018, 06:55 PM
Man what a string of bad luck! Good new is you're due for some good luck now!

Czarbecue
07-26-2018, 08:11 PM
Thatís us waiting for our order at Chicken Express in Longview at 10:30 am. Wife decides it was crucial to drive 10 miles west of the highway for some fried chicken.

https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180727/127aaa91d2bdad374ea687ed66de6b43.jpg

We just got to the Alabama state line and have another 5 hours to go. Plenty of stops on this trip so far.

pjtexas1
07-26-2018, 08:26 PM
what's it gonna cost to title the trailer?

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk

Czarbecue
07-26-2018, 08:36 PM
what's it gonna cost to title the trailer?


Sheís staying a Texan!

Happy Hapgood
07-26-2018, 08:36 PM
Yeah but that Chicken Express is some goood yardbird!


As to the tiedowns ask "what would happen to it IF you had to Stand on the breaks from 70 to 0"?


Forward restraint as well as tie-down is a biggie.

sudsandswine
07-26-2018, 08:53 PM
This was a very informative thread :thumb:

Czarbecue
07-27-2018, 03:58 AM
Yeah but that Chicken Express is some goood yardbird!


As to the tiedowns ask "what would happen to it IF you had to Stand on the breaks from 70 to 0"?


Forward restraint as well as tie-down is a biggie.



I just didnít trust my welds. But it held up just fine :thumb: just walking in the door now.