Miscalculation with Tongue Box (Can't remove spare tire)

immped64immped64 Member Posts: 29
Last year I purchased a new tongue box to hold my Solar Controller.  The size was extremely close to the tongue box size I already had so I didn't expect any problems.  After mounting the box to the little guy frame I discovered that the tire was unremovable due to clearance issues with the tire between the tongue box and tire mount.  Thinking that it would give me the needed clearance I removed the 2 bolts that protruded from the tire mount leaving 2 holes that I could bolt the tire on after it was slid into place.  I was astounded when I discovered I still couldn't get the tire on the tire mount!  It is close but not enough.  Out of frustration I just let it be.

Now that I have a little time on my hands I'd like to fix the problem so I could properly store my tire.

I've thought of 2 possible fixes that have their pro's and con's.
1) Replace the tire mount with some combination of a taller vertical stem or a shorter horizontal stem on a different mount. (It might be a chore to remove the tire mount but I discovered that there are 2 large bolts holding the tire mount in place).  Perhaps with something like this.  https://www.amazon.com/Tow-Tuff-TTF-08HD-Heavy-Duty-Universal/dp/B01FEITZNA/ref=psdc_15706921_t1_B078WJJ91Z
2) Cut the battery box plate (which is in front of the tongue box) shorter by a half inch and detach and move the tongue box forwards that corresponding amount.

I'd be out less money with option 2 but it would be a little more obstructive with needing to move my solar controller wiring forwards (which I will be moving some regardless). I will also need to angle grind out the battery box plate and likely re-attach the end that gets removed.  I would also need to drill new holes for mounting the tongue box in a slightly changed location.

On the other hand if I were to go with a tire mount replacement similar to my linked example I would need to angle grind out some of the wire mesh that attaches to the 2 inch square tubing.  But ouch I just noticed that there also is some metal plate between the mesh and 2 inch tubing.

The other option would be possibly to mount the tire up front more, but I believe the spacing would be quite tight.  This was discussed somewhat in a thread I started last year.  http://https//littleguy.vanillacommunities.com/discussion/6091/looking-for-narrow-but-tall-tongue-box#latest

I'm curious what your thoughts might be.

Comments

  • WildcatWildcat Member Posts: 674 ✭✭✭
    edited April 13
    I can't figure out what you've got going on.  I'd like to see a picture from back a ways to see the whole thing.  Which trailer is that?

    On mine, the tool box is up next to the trailer front.  The tire is mounted on the side of the tongue.  My tool box, if I remember, sticks out a ways, so I mounted it next to the cooler. Besides, on the other side, it would probably  interfere with the brake line.  The cooler is behind the tire.  There is a little room towards the battery if I needed it.  It adds to the tongue weight, but it works for me.

    The tire cover is probably in the way of seeing.

  • GroveratcGroveratc Administrator, Moderator Posts: 511 admin
    I will have to agree with Wildcat as mine is in the same location. 


  • WildcatWildcat Member Posts: 674 ✭✭✭
    edited April 13
    The last i knew, however, teardropshop did not have our kind of mount.  This is somewhat similar to how mine fastened on.  The one on my first trailer was a bit different than the one I have now.
    https://amazon.com/Extreme-Max-3004-4553-Economy-Carrier/dp/B00J06MCE2/ref=sr_1_2?dchild=1&keywords=Spare+tire+mount&qid=1586761592&sr=8-2
  • immped64immped64 Member Posts: 29
    Both of your examples look great!

    Given the present configuration I unfortunately wouldn't be able to fit my tire up front.  This is what the expanded view of my trailer tongue looks like.  Notice that the battery tray is fairly close to the tongue box.  If I was to place the plastic battery box inside the tray there is about a half inch of free space.



    Here is another view without the tire squeezed into position.



    The tire mount straddles the 2" square tubing.  As mentioned in my initial post if the horizontal arm was shorter by just 1/2 of an inch the tire would fit.  Or if the vertical arm was several inches higher it would allow the tire to be wedged between tongue box and tire mount.  It would seem that there would be square tube mounts such as this with differing sizes.
  • WildcatWildcat Member Posts: 674 ✭✭✭
    How about putting your battery inside your tongue box?  Maybe that wouldn't fit either.  I see, you don't have as big of a tongue tray (whatever it's called) as I do.  Mine is an oblong rather than a triangle shape.
  • immped64immped64 Member Posts: 29
    Wildcat said:
    How about putting your battery inside your tongue box?  Maybe that wouldn't fit either.  I see, you don't have as big of a tongue tray (whatever it's called) as I do.  Mine is an oblong rather than a triangle shape.
    Working with a small amount of space does pose challenges.  If I were to put the battery in the tongue box I would worry about a couple things.  First of all my solar controller is also in the tongue box.  Also if I moved my tongue box up too much more it may become unbalanced on the trailer tongue triangle.

    It may be nice being able to utilize the 16 inches behind the tongue box in a better way than just holding a tire, but it would be a huge victory to hold the tire down stable.  

    If I hadn't already purchased my tongue box I might have been able to get a box similar to yours or Groveratc leaving more room up front, but that time has passed.

    I'm sure that I could design something out in CAD but I wouldn't likely be able to fabricate it.

    Perhaps the best way would be to chop 1/2 inch off the battery tray and sliding the tongue box forward that corresponding 1/2 inch.
  • WildcatWildcat Member Posts: 674 ✭✭✭
    Well, I hope it works out.  I know how frustrating it can get.  My trailer wouldn't hold water in the tank because I guess they thought water would run uphill.  I went through a lot to get that fixed.
  • immped64immped64 Member Posts: 29
    Wildcat said:
    Well, I hope it works out.  I know how frustrating it can get.  My trailer wouldn't hold water in the tank because I guess they thought water would run uphill.  I went through a lot to get that fixed.
    Yes; frustration seems to always be the given.  In my case I'm attempting to work towards my more pivotal project which is trying to stretch the solar wiring that I already assembled into the controller box and protected in pvc conduit.  The issue was that the solar controller was mounted extremely close to the drilled holes combined with frayed solar cable that refused to fit inside the solar controller slots.  I got it to work but I lost a lot of efficiency due to the brittle wires that broke off from the rat's nest of wires.  I am planning to make the wire entry much easier by raising the entry point.  Since I have everything taken apart I figured this might be the opportune time to look at the spare tire issue more closely.

    If I haven't lost you I may have found a potential solution.  This one is not without it's faults but I would like to sound off to see whether this idea doesn't have a potential flaw.

    I spent hours on Google images and Pinterest looking at potential solutions.  I kept looking for something low profile but raised up.  There was one idea that I discounted but it popped up a number of times with teardrop trailers.

    There is a bracket that would install flat to the teardrop trailer.



    When I 1st saw this my 1st inclination was to install this directly behind my existing tire mount.  I saw a number of vintage teardrop done exactly this way.  The good thing was that I would be gaining a little more room on the triangular tongue tray (or whatever that is called  :)).  Then I thought why not go all the way in freeing up the 16 inches behind the tongue box.  I have a Coleman Grill that might fit very nicely in that vacated area that I couldn't fit prior to this.

    This is where I would like to mount the tire.

    In my case the tire would be almost directly above my passenger side fender.  The fender wells on my trailer stick out beyond the trailer so the spare would be just inside of my fender well.  Other people have done this so I think the idea is conceivable.

    The potential negatives that I can see is that:
    1) It might throw my trailer load balance off.
    2) There might be something bad that I might drill through. (Like a cabinet)
    3) If the wall structure would support the weight of the suspended tire.
    4) If the hole would allow moisture in my trailer.
    5) If there is a bolt pattern that would match my spare tire.

    I'm not a super great DIY'er.  I'm throwing this out there to see if anyone sees something that would destroy this idea and if there might be tips towards doing this right.
  • LouDLouD Member Posts: 1
    edited April 14
    Has anyone had any issues with turning clearance mounting the spare on the side of the tongue? I mounted mine than removed it. I thought I was going to have issues with the tire hitting the back of the truck on right turns or backing the trailer into a spot.   I have an 2016 LG 5 wide. 
  • WildcatWildcat Member Posts: 674 ✭✭✭
    @immped64 Side of the trailer could be good.  I always wondered how it would handle the weight there.  @LouD I have not had a problem with the tire being in the way.  Assuming you have the same sort of tongue.  Mine is a Rough Rider Five Wide 2016.  If it looks like I could get into a bind of any kind, I get out and look to make sure I'm not going to do any bad things,

    I am also adding a picture of the back side of my mount, looking down upon it--bolted to the tongue-frame.  It has a cable and lock run through it, not that it would stop a thief.


  • immped64immped64 Member Posts: 29
    I'm still not decided on the best route to take here.

    On another forum thread the thought was that if the tire was mounted on an exterior sidewall that there would not be enough strength to support the extra weight.

    I have made an inquiry in regards to the company that sells the above imaged sidewall bracket.  The helpful person that answered back didn't abandon the idea but didn't know how my sidewall compared wall strength wise to the teardrops that they sell.  Also mentioned; they do sell an interior strengthening plate that would be used in conjunction with the exterior mount.  I'm really wavering on this.  If it isn't strong enough it could be a monumental failure.

    Doing a little browse this morning I am seeing how at least 1 trailer online does have a similar side of the tongue installation to what you guys have shown earlier in this thread that isn't ruled out due to tongue box location.


    Notice how the tongue box was shifted to the right so it doesn't overhang the tongue frame by the tire.  My question would be how this could be done with the tire without being able to fully surround the frame with the mount?  Unless there was a vertical post directly off the frame itself.

    Even if I could fully grip the frame with a mount (just in front or back of the tongue box) I still would have to contend with an interior lip that holds the the grating in place.

    I also would need to move my tongue box likely.

    With enough ideas circulating something has to be a good solution.
  • Davidp1000Davidp1000 Member Posts: 1
    If you carry a way to inflate your spare tire, i.e. a battery pack with an inflator, could you just deflate the spare enough to wedge it in place?  Taking some air out might allow you to leave the tire in place without the need to mount it elsewhere.  
  • immped64immped64 Member Posts: 29
    If you carry a way to inflate your spare tire, i.e. a battery pack with an inflator, could you just deflate the spare enough to wedge it in place?  Taking some air out might allow you to leave the tire in place without the need to mount it elsewhere.  
    That would be an interesting possibility.  I've thought about using a smaller spare but hadn't considered this.  That is a good idea.
  • WildcatWildcat Member Posts: 674 ✭✭✭
    Davidp1000, that is an idea alright.  But with my luck, my inflator would be run down or something.  On that offset tongue box, it seems like they would have had to cut a hole in the expanded metal or something to make it strong enough going around the frame.  It's hard to know what would work best.
  • immped64immped64 Member Posts: 29
    Wildcat said:
    On that offset tongue box, it seems like they would have had to cut a hole in the expanded metal or something to make it strong enough going around the frame.  It's hard to know what would work best.
    Strange isn't it.  Not sure how you could pull that off.


    I am considering a different idea that wouldn't require buying anything else.

    If I were to take my existing tire mount and assemble it just past the tongue box I might be able to bypass the tire not fitting as well as opening up space for other camping gear.  I would be somewhat balancing things with the camping gear but I still might question whether this would unbalance the load.  Otherwise I really want to try this.

    I'd like to lay this out in CAD to see how everything fits.  The tire would be favoring towards the trailer but straddling the tongue box.
  • madcitymadcity Member Posts: 22
    I have a longer A frame and an hitch extender but have no problems with the spare tire hitting the back of the truck.
  • TomDTomD Moderator Posts: 101 mod
    I have traveled at least 10,000 miles through the US. Burned through my original set of tires (replaced this year) and none of the travel was with a spare tire. Please don’t judge🥴I’m just prepared to take on the hassle of not being prepared.
  • WildcatWildcat Member Posts: 674 ✭✭✭
    @TomD   I'm one of those persons, if anything can go wrong, it will.  I live up a gravel road, and on the rare occasions when they dump gravel or run a grader, it seems to stir up nails and screws for whatever reason.  So, I carry the spare and a little rechargeable air compressor.  I really dislike taking a lot of just-in-case stuff, but it seems like it's either that or worry about it.  But i haven't had need for the trailer spare yet.  The tires are a bit heavier on the offroad.
  • immped64immped64 Member Posts: 29
    I am heavily considering a different option.

    I would love to save space.  This option may or may not accomplish that.

    I am looking into using my RAV4 spare for the trailer spare.  In order to do this I would need to buy a wheel adapter.

    It's possible that I could store the wheel adapter under the slide away floor inside the trailer along with my jack, or I could attach the wheel adapter to the existing spare tire post.

    Hopefully when I do this everything fits and I can get on to the next project. 
  • WranglerRubiconWranglerRubicon Member Posts: 93 ✭✭
    I wanted to move my spare to reduce tongue weight so I bought a cargo basket for the top and put the spare there. That puts the weight over the wheels so balance is not an issue.
  • immped64immped64 Member Posts: 29
    That would be a great place for the tire but I installed a solar panel up top on the Yakima rack.
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