Despite our many improvements over the years, a couple of deficiencies continued to concern us. Switching to aluminum eliminated a deficiency that, although quite minor, was seen by some to be quite serious. Simultaneously, it simplified eliminating the other more real deficiency and yielded a great side effect as well.
The problem was that not even powder coated steel frames are one hundred percent rust proof. The Ironhorse chasses from the worst part of the snowbelt and the coast seemed to develop a rust color faster than we or some of our customers expected. In fact the poorly painted (subcontractor) steel chasses we used for the first year or two lasted over a dozen years in that kind of environment before becoming structurally questionable. Although it takes a long time to rust through 11 gauge steel, powder coating slows it down even more. Since that ugly rust color was a real concern to some Ironhorse owners, switching to aluminum made a lot of sense.
The other issue was the durability of the wiring. To make a long story short, we deliberately chose thick aluminum C-channel for the perimeter rails on the new aluminum chassis. That allows us to run plastic conduit for the wiring on the inside of the channel. At the same time, we switched to heat shrink connectors instead of standard butt connectors. The overall result is more durable and reliable wiring.
The most dramatic side effect of the switch to aluminum was the weight loss that came with it. In fact it cut about 15% off the total weight of each of our trailers. But don’t look for that kind of drop in the published weights. While we knew some of the improvements we made over the years made our trailers heavier, we apparently neglected to update our published weights until now.
Now that we’ve eliminated the deficiencies above, when it comes to comes to convenience, economy, exclusivity, reliability, durability, security and resale value, Ironhorse has further extended its lead over the Motorcycle Trailers pack.