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Last: The Second Rebuild

Winter 1996-97

About the same time I was rebuilding the lower part of the engine, I was also finishing up my trailer. It still lacked fenders and I knew I would need them to get it licenced. I did have lights hooked up so if I needed to do a dump run or something I could use it (but I would have to sneak around).

Part of the problem was I needed the jeep running to use the trailer, and we all know the condition of my jeep at the time. And sure enough, I had to make a dump run. When I remodeled my bathroom, I had to put all the old tile, wood and drywall somewhere, it just wouldn't fit in my 20 gallon trash can. So guess where it went. Into the trailer.

By the time I had finished up the bathroom project the trailer was almost overflowing with construction debris and before I could finish up the trailer I need to take all that shit to the dump and of course the jeep was still in pieces. I guess you could call this the third time I needed it. I finally talked Ted into using his Blazer to tow the trailer to the dump.

Once the trailer was empty, I could proceed with making the fenders. After more welding, cutting, welding, etc., I had the fenders on the trailer, and they even matched the lines of my jeep. It was really starting to look cool.

Now I guess, it was time to make it legal. So what does one need to do to license a trailer? I really didn't know but I sort of guessed that I could take it down to the local licensing agent, show them the trailer and they would give me a plate, right. Of course not, but I gave it my best try.

One nice sunny Saturday in February I drove down to the license agent, stepped up to the counter and said I needed to license a trailer. "Did you purchase the trailer?" "No, I made it, see, it's right out there, doesn't it look cool". No, I didn't say that, but sort of. Well, of course it wasn't that easy. I needed a few things.

First I need to take it to the State Patrol where they would inspect it. I needed to get it weighed, and I also needed receipts for the materials I used to make the trailer. Uh, receipts? Well, ah, most of the parts for the trailer came from spare parts off my jeep, that might get a little sticky. Anyway, I asked which State Patrol office was open on Saturday. The Bellevue location was the only one open on the weekend, so off I drove through the crappy weekend traffic over to Bellevue.

When I got there, nobody was around and there was a sign that said..."As of Feb 1, all weekend inspections will be done at the South King County Station" &%^@*&$@!!!!! Well, screw this, I though, and drove off, back towards home. Once I got on the road I figured, what the hell, I'll go down to the South King County Station. So I headed south, down 405 and of couse the traffic got worse. Where the hell is everyone going, it's the weekend, you should all be at home, off the road so I can go get my trailer licenced. Well, that never helps things so you just put it in granny and crawl along the pavement.

I finally got the the SKC Station, where there was a little line of cars. Up ahead I see a small handwritten sign that said "No Homemade Trailers", and as I got closer I could read underneath it, "On Saturday" &%^@*&$@!!!!! When I got up to talk to a guy, I said, "Well, I guess I'm screwed huh?" and sure enough I was. I had to take time off work to get the damn trailer legalized, they didn't have the manpower to do trailer inspecations on the weekend. Strike one.

The only good part of this story is that the North King County State Patrol is about 5 minutes from my house. So I decided to show up late to work and hit the State Patrol first thing when they opened. I drove up at 8am, and jumped out of the jeep. "Well", the State Trooper said, "your going to need some stuff here..." Reflectors, a license plate light, and safety chains (I sort of figured that one). Strike two. I also need the weight slip for their writeup, so I drove away and go the trailer weighed, so that morning was not a complete waste. 580lbs, that little trailer weighed. It's sort of overengineered.

So I went and got some reflectors, a license plate light (why do I need one on the trailer, I don't have one on my jeep?), and the chains. I was sort of looking at other trailer chain setups to try and figure out a good way to connect them to the trailer. I took one long piece of chain, ran it through a channel under the tongue and welded the middle of the chain to the channel and then drove back up to the State Patrol a week later.

Well, I didn't get the chains right. I needed two separate chains and I couldn't weld any part of the chain. Strike three. So I came home, cut the chain into two parts and used some spare u-bolts welded to the trailer to attach the chains.

Now lets see how they like that...

Next: Tick Tick Tick
My Jeep Adventures
The Beginning
The First Day
The Maiden Voyage
Trail Jamboree
The Worst Day
Slick Hill
Christmas Tree Run
Winter Repairs
Elbe Hills
Swap Meet
Transfer Case
High Rider Trail
Canadian Jamboree
Deep Mud
Rear End
Lake Cavinagh
Getting Away
A Home for the Jeep
Crossed Up
The Island
Jeep Thoughts
Trail Jamboree II
Knock Knock
The Second Rebuild
Legalizing Trailers
Tick Tick Tick
Island Rock Crawlers
The Third Rebuild
The Current State of the Jeep
For Sale
The End