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Old 05-08-2021, 05:31 PM   #1
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Question Why no enclosed trailers ??

Just wondering why it seems nobody pulls enclosed trailers behind their skoolies?

I have a shorty bus and plan on pulling a small enclosed trailer to haul my m/c for alternative transportation and use the front half as a full bathroom and shower room. I have already purchased a 14ft trailer, Built the wall dividing the trailer into the two rooms. I put a shower stall assy, vanity, and am waiting for my composting toilet to show up. The wall also houses the diesel heater ductwork, water tank, and water heater on the shower side, on the m/c side is the tool section and the solar system to power the trailer. It also holds the fuel tank for the heater and propane for the water heater. I have everything I need for transportation, repairs, and sanitation needs and still didn't touch the skoolie yet. A lil port-a-pot will work for the inside of the bus for nighttime needs. This makes total sense to me, is there a reason no one else is doing this??

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Old 05-08-2021, 05:59 PM   #2
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Seems the weight of the bath & mc alone might be reason to reverse the idea. Water tanks & cycle over the drive wheels, while towing an empty bunkhouse. Good traction. Low drag.

We like to rinse our parts before & after using the bunk so, all in one works. For us.

Does the trailer your building have brakes?
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Old 05-08-2021, 06:27 PM   #3
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No brakes on the trailer. That's why I kept it to a 14 footer, If I went bigger I would have had to get a trailer with brakes and Penna would then require annual inspection on the trailer also. I could de-rate the trailer to get past that but really didn't need the bigger trailer. Drove rigs and pulled trailers most my driving life. I also worked as a mechanic for years and know the bus chassis I have. This extra trailer kept in line with it's weight capacity will be little problem pulling or stopping. It will max out close to capacity tho. But then I'm not hard on brakes as I seldom change pads on anything I drive. Just saying !
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Old 05-08-2021, 06:59 PM   #4
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Trailers are okay for hauling extra gear/stuff. Your designs on the trailer are good, and should work well.

The added trailer brings up the issue of backing up and the effects of cornering that likely scare some folks away from using one in their travels, who have little to no experience in towing one?
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Old 05-08-2021, 07:34 PM   #5
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There were a number of valid points addressed by members here regarding the same question a few months ago in this thread....

https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f27/w...tml#post413787

I think BeNimble & another member had good input on the subject, worth reviewing.
idk if it helps, sometimes other, similar, threads contain more answers. Check it out.

I DO think trailers & toads are a both good options for any worthy vehicle. Your hard work will pay off.
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Old 05-08-2021, 07:51 PM   #6
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Gotcha, Never really thought about it as I've pulled trailers forever and is just second nature to me. I just figured if folks can drive 40ft buses around, what is a lil combo of a shortie and a small trailer. For me it was an alternative to driving a big bus and needing to worry about size and space and a small combo would be so much easier and less stress. Still, I can't help to thing some folks are missing out on a chance to have what they need with so much less expense and stress. As a person traveling with my pet, There is no reason to drive a 40 ft tank around when a small combo gives me all I need or want. Just wondered me why others haven't thought about it, That's all, All valid points have been submitted so far, but still, Am I the only fool thinking this way? If so, Look for me traveling on or along side the road, I'll be the only one with a combo?
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Old 05-08-2021, 09:08 PM   #7
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Nothing wrong with your logic, if it works for you build it.
One thing to consider is late night trips to the sandbox? I've never had the urge to cook bacon at 3:00am but hitting the head is a different story. Why not the bathroom in the tow vehicle and your complete galley off the trailer, personally I prefer outdoor cooking after setting up camp. Smell, humidity and mess are no worry and you can always keep some snacks inside for the late munchies.
Cheers

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Old 05-08-2021, 10:07 PM   #8
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If the kids were still little I would have done it in a heartbeat.
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Old 05-08-2021, 10:38 PM   #9
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I've considered the addition of an enclosed trailer for additional storage or toy hauler or whatnot but never considered building part of the living quarters or similar inside it. I also understand that many people converting skoolies have a hard enough time satisfying the minimum requirements necessary for retitling their bus as an RV without further complicating it by dividing those requirements across two pieces of a combination vehicle and convincing the governing authority in charge of such matters that it fits the bill. Of course the difficulty of this process varies greatly by state so perhaps some research first before you get too far into this plan to make sure you can get it properly titled as a combination vehicle.

As far as skoolies towing trailers or other toweds like small cars, it's important to remember that the original vehicle was spec'd for singular operation and the additional demands of weight, stability, braking, etc when pulling a trailer may be too much for the engine, transmission, brakes, and suspension of the bus. It wasn't built to be a combination vehicle and improperly demanding such can be not only expensive but deadly.

OP's profile says a short bus on a Chevy chassis and a gas engine. Just imagining that trailer is almost as long as the bus body and now all the heaviest parts of an RV are in the trailer AND it's not brake-equipped... That all sounds mighty risky to me. It's one thing if your bus just can't move all the weight but it's far far worse if your bus can't STOP all that weight safely. THAT may be why you don't hear of more skoolies pulling trailers.
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Old 05-08-2021, 11:09 PM   #10
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I believe it is not commonly done, as once you accept towing something, the solution of having a truck and towing a trailer becomes clear as a better solution, which is the common solution for mobile living. A fifth wheel truck reduces the total length by having the trailer tucked up to the back of the truck vs a bumper tow setup, which is what you need for a shuttle bus and trailer, and the fifth wheel setup tows much better and safer.
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Old 05-09-2021, 09:13 AM   #11
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Many states require trailer brakes on trailers above a certain weight. For example, Ca requires trailer brakes on any trailer over 1500 pounds. I'd bet that your insurance company would be off the hook if you had an accident while hauling a trailer required to have brakes but operated without them.

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Old 05-09-2021, 09:31 AM   #12
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I think if you're going to tow a trailer, it would make more sense to increase your livable space inside your bus by off-loading whatever you can to the trailer, like storage, maybe laundry machines, fresh water tanks etc.

I thought it might be interesting to put together a solar power trailer that has all the panels on fold-out racks on the roof and the batteries and chargers and inverters etc. You could park the trailer in the sun and your bus in the shade, as long as they weren't too far apart.
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Old 05-09-2021, 10:43 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by musigenesis View Post
I thought it might be interesting to put together a solar power trailer that has all the panels on fold-out racks on the roof and the batteries and chargers and inverters etc. You could park the trailer in the sun and your bus in the shade, as long as they weren't too far apart.
Now I do like that idea!
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Old 05-09-2021, 12:36 PM   #14
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i saw a full size 60 passenger? dog nose come through town towing a 20' enclosed trailer last week. they also had a wood stove or at least wood stove flue pipe stuck out the roof.
but they had vermont tags.
i wanted to follow them and talk to them when they stopped somewhere but i had other things i was in the middle of
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Old 05-09-2021, 05:47 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by musigenesis View Post
I think if you're going to tow a trailer, it would make more sense to increase your livable space inside your bus by off-loading whatever you can to the trailer, like storage, maybe laundry machines, fresh water tanks etc.

I thought it might be interesting to put together a solar power trailer that has all the panels on fold-out racks on the roof and the batteries and chargers and inverters etc. You could park the trailer in the sun and your bus in the shade, as long as they weren't too far apart.
That's a really interesting idea, free up more living space too. Just a shore power hookup to your trailer.
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Old 05-09-2021, 08:37 PM   #16
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I like having everything for living in the bus, no going outside for the bathroom. We did a teardrop for about 10 years, not full time but enough time. The bus is luxury and we do not see any reason to rough it, and I suspect most would prefer everything in one vehicle. Even going to a toy hauler. 2/3 living and a back deck for the jeep or bikes etc. No trailers to mess with. Trailers really can be a mess off road, get you stuck sooner then just a bus.



We do pull trailers a good bit, the heaviest a 3 axle 18,000lb trailer with brakes on all wheels. Mostly boats though around 5000lbs. So as comfortable with pulling trailers as I am If I can toss a canoe on the roof and skip the trailer so much the better.


Just my thoughts.
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Old 05-15-2021, 04:20 PM   #17
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The Enclosed Trailer idea idea is a good one. We have a 20ft open flat trailer and our Subaru car and canoe go on board. Crosswise in front is our large 2 up quad. Plus add 2 bicycles, trailer spare and a mounted 11R 22.5 for the bus. If it would all fit in an enclosed, I would consider. I DO have trailer brakes on both axles
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Old 05-15-2021, 06:38 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewmaster View Post
Just wondering why it seems nobody pulls enclosed trailers behind their skoolies?

I have a shorty bus and plan on pulling a small enclosed trailer to haul my m/c for alternative transportation and use the front half as a full bathroom and shower room. I have already purchased a 14ft trailer, Built the wall dividing the trailer into the two rooms. I put a shower stall assy, vanity, and am waiting for my composting toilet to show up. The wall also houses the diesel heater ductwork, water tank, and water heater on the shower side, on the m/c side is the tool section and the solar system to power the trailer. It also holds the fuel tank for the heater and propane for the water heater. I have everything I need for transportation, repairs, and sanitation needs and still didn't touch the skoolie yet. A lil port-a-pot will work for the inside of the bus for nighttime needs. This makes total sense to me, is there a reason no one else is doing this??
There are plenty doing it. Ruth and I drag a road behind our 40 foot bus. I have seen a number of schoolkids at the track towing thier garage and car or bike. There is no reason to not haul a trailer if your bus us able and yo do it correctly.
One concern you might want to address is the weight of the trailer you plan to tow. If it should have brakes, then add them. See what your completed plan weighs with the water tanks full and loaded with your bike and tools then make an educated decision regarding brakes.
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Old 05-15-2021, 09:51 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewmaster View Post
Gotcha, Never really thought about it as I've pulled trailers forever and is just second nature to me. I just figured if folks can drive 40ft buses around, what is a lil combo of a shortie and a small trailer. For me it was an alternative to driving a big bus and needing to worry about size and space and a small combo would be so much easier and less stress. Still, I can't help to thing some folks are missing out on a chance to have what they need with so much less expense and stress. As a person traveling with my pet, There is no reason to drive a 40 ft tank around when a small combo gives me all I need or want. Just wondered me why others haven't thought about it, That's all, All valid points have been submitted so far, but still, Am I the only fool thinking this way? If so, Look for me traveling on or along side the road, I'll be the only one with a combo?
This is why I was ok with. Using a 30ft bus. I plan on getting an enclosed trailer to put my dirt bikes in and then fully converting the bus into a camper.
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