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4-Wide 32-Axle 400-ton Suspension Trailer
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An LDD model of a 32-axle, 400-ton suspension trailer, being pulled and pushed by a pair of Mack off-road M-series tractors. It is built at a 4-wide scale (i.e 1 stud ~= 2 feet).
About this creation
This behemoth is one of the largest tranport rigs used in the heavy hauling business. It is based on a Trail King TK400 32-axle, 400-ton suspension trailer. The trailer consists of 4 independently steerable axle groups and a giant suspension "bridge" from which the payload is hung on a set of steel rods. Two operators, one in front and one in the rear, steer the trailer as it maneuvers around obstacles.

Each large axle group is arranged in a 2x2 formation of smaller axle groups, with each of these smaller groups consisting of two dual axles, one behind the other -- that's a total of 128 tires on the trailer, if you are counting (each wheel in the model represents two tires on the real trailer). In the real trailer, the dual axle pairs that sit side by side can be hydraulically jacked inward (to a minimum width of 13 feet) or outward (to maximum width of 20 feet) while the trailer is rolling. I have pegged the width at 18 feet in this model.

The suspension "bridge" can also be hydraulically jacked up or down "on the fly" to overcome hilly terrain or obstacles. In this model, the payload that is being suspended is a large electrical transformer.

With this trailer, unlike other heavy duty trailers and lowloaders, the tractors are not load bearing. The trailer is pulled and pushed by set a drawbars. Because the tractors don't support the load, they are fitted with a ballast (basically a big steel block) on top of their rear axles so that they can maintain traction.

This model is now part of a Cuusoo idea. Consider supporting it if you like it.







The following set of pictures show the transport rig negotiating a turn. Note how all of the axle groups are pointed in slightly different directions.









The tractors used for hauling rigs this large are not the typical tractors you'd see as part of an 18-wheeler rolling down the highway. These are heavy duty off-road tractors based on Mack M-series trucks. They are much heavier and much more powerful than a typical semi tractor, usually powered by a 12-cylinder diesel engine (a few of these big trucks even have a 16-cylinder engine!). The picture below is a comparison between the Mack trucks in this rig (left) and a typical semi tractor (right). The tires aren't quite right, especially for the front axle, but I did the best with what was available.






Comments

 I made it 
  August 19, 2014
Quoting Kurt's MOCs Nice model. 400 tons is incredible! Great design and wonderful details. I'm always amazed at your accuracy and detailing. Keep up the good work.
Thanks! Believe it or not, there are modular flatbed trailers (e.g. those manufactured by Goldhofer) that can handle even more weight. The equipment used for heavy hauling is definitely pretty impressive.
 I like it 
  August 18, 2014
Nice model. 400 tons is incredible! Great design and wonderful details. I'm always amazed at your accuracy and detailing. Keep up the good work.
 I made it 
  July 26, 2013
Quoting clayton Marchetti That is fascinating . How do the two trucks coridinate their speed ? Do they just move at a pre agreed speed . I know they use this arrangement with locomotives, but this seems more dicey. Awesome model !
To be honest, I'm not sure exactly how they do it, other than years of experience, a lot of preparation, and constant communication. The pusher tractor probably chooses a gear/speed to match what the lead tractor is doing. There are also two operators on board the trailer, keeping a close watch on how it is handling.
 I made it 
  July 26, 2013
Here's a great video of a similar trailer, a Trail King TK550, being used to transport an electrical generator: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YtWRwkRNkIs
 I made it 
  July 26, 2013
Quoting Stephen Barnes Clever and fun. Well done. But real trucks aren't that big.
Are you talking about the tractors, or the entire trailer? Mack M-series off-road trucks, which are used by the Hallamore Company, among others, to push/pull superheavy rigs definitely are that big. Depending on the model, they can range from 10 to 16 feet in width and have tires that can be as much as 5 feet in diameter. Have a look at the following picture for reference: http://www.hankstruckpictures.com/pix/trucks/szalus/60s_m_series_mack_p1.jpg. If you don't believe the rig can be that big, check out this link: http://www.hallamore.com/PDF/s32.pdf (and realize that this document specs out the length without the pusher tractor). My model may have exaggerated the length slightly (because I couldn't get the axle spacings to match perfectly due to the limitations of LEGO bricks), but not by more than about 10 feet.
 I like it 
  July 26, 2013
That is fascinating . How do the two trucks coridinate their speed ? Do they just move at a pre agreed speed . I know they use this arrangement with locomotives, but this seems more dicey. Awesome model !
 I made it 
  July 26, 2013
Quoting Gabor Pauler Cool! It reminds me the multi-axle railroad boogies of WWII German superguns Dora and Gustav used at siege of Sevastopol in 1942. You shold try to build that based on your experience with this model...
You are right -- there is a lot of similarity between this transport rig and the Dora gun transport, as well as to the Schnabel rail cars used to transport large pre-fabbed construction components, like wind turbine towers. I don't have a lot of experience with LEGO train building, but I might give a try at some point.
  July 26, 2013
Clever and fun. Well done. But real trucks aren't that big.
 I like it 
  July 26, 2013
Cool! It reminds me the multi-axle railroad boogies of WWII German superguns Dora and Gustav used at siege of Sevastopol in 1942. You shold try to build that based on your experience with this model...
 
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LEGO models my own creation MOCpages toys shop 4-Wide 32-Axle 400-ton Suspension Trailer


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