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Let's talk trailers...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by JK, Jan 29, 2008.

  1. I know some of ya'll don't like them, but, sometimes you just have to trailer your car or project, and there comes a time when you just need one. I'm tired of having to make 3 or 4 calls to find a trailer to borrow for the day. I'm getting some cash later on in the year and I told my pops that I'd go in half on a trailer with him. Can anybody recommend a good brand to look at? What features should I look for. My car is really low and I can't get the door open after I drive it onto the trailer, what's a good way around this? I really like the tilt backs and I've found a 8' x 22' 4" enclosed for $4250. I'm wondering what's wrong with it. Anybody run a winch system and is it worth it?
  2. F'n-100
    Joined: Mar 5, 2007
    Posts: 55


    You get what you pay for, especially when it comes to enclosed trailers. I have a 24' enclosed Haulmark, their economy version. I have hauled a vehicle in it twice, and hauled motorcycles around in it for probably 10,000 miles. I blew out every tire almost immediately, lost one half of the axle last year while on the road, the trim has fallen off on the inside, the front cap broke and it took the company six months to find a replacement, and as with all trailers, the wiring is a mess. The lights rarely work, the trailer brakes work sometimes, and the interior light has never worked.

    I paid around $7000 for it new, and when I sell this thing, I won't hesitate to spend twice as much to avoid all of these hassles.

    I can't say it was the brand for sure; I have heard a lot of happy customers with Haulmark. Just avoid the economy lines, especially if you're going to use it frequently.
    Joined: Aug 19, 2002
    Posts: 1,961

    HAMB O'dex Editor

    i like terry's trailer right there in okc.

    we have had two of their challenger style trailers. they pull great and have been great quality so far.
  4. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 18,686


    JK, come and see mine. I pad about 1800 bucks for a 20' dovetail with a steel floor. It looks like crap after 8 years but the mechanicals are good.
    Register now to get rid of these ads!

  5. raceratrod
    Joined: Feb 1, 2007
    Posts: 229


    I bought a 20' trailer with steel deck ,aluminum wheels and 6 ply tires .All positive . Put a h/f winch 10,000 lb up front (with h/f if you need 5,000lb, better buy a 10,000 ) Has a snatch block to pull cars off the trailer .and a compact truck tool box for a extra battery and tie downs .The trailer was a new leftover paid $2,800 out the door w the tax $300 for the winch and $100 for tool box.
    The bad thing on my trailer is the ramps come out of the rear ,with no adjustment for width and they need to be about a foot longer.
    To make up for this i have to block up under the trailer jack and lift the front .
  6. GTX469
    Joined: Jan 21, 2008
    Posts: 24


    I just got one from Royal Cargo, WWW.RCTRAILERS.COM, it is one of their Crown series, an all alluminum 28' X 8.5', fully dressed with carpeted and vinyl interior side walls and ceiling, linoleum flooring, front benches and cabinets with polished stainless steel counter top. 48" front side door with pull out polished diamond plate step and full drop back door. Built in generator box with locking door. 5200 dual axles with 6 lug alluminum mags. full length of 110v flourescent ceiling lighting and under cabinet, and 5 12v dome lamps and 2 roof vents. All for 16,500.00. Best buck i ever spent for my cars. Plus they guys there are fantastic and will build a trailer to any spec you come up with for your budget. Guys at the track freak when they see what i got for the buck. Like you i drive my cars but sometimes with the rear gearing and the 30 minute rain squalls we get in florida, it's not worth the 2 hour drive to some shows after getting it all polished up. plus i use it for my vintage 38 plymouth modified. Call greg Shetterly at 877-283-7260, tell him Larry in FL told you to call. Good luck, i hope this helps. F'n-100 is right. spend the bucks and get a good one or you'll be sorry latter. This alluminum trailer will outlast any cheaper steel one 2 to 1.
  7. SinisterCustom
    Joined: Feb 18, 2004
    Posts: 8,264


    All the cars I haul are an open trailer works nice, as they are alot easier to tie down, no walls in the way. Tilt deck with a winch is the way to go......low cars will high center on a trailer with ramps unless other measures are taken, blocks, etc.....
  8. 35WINDOW
    Joined: Jul 7, 2005
    Posts: 453


    I sell Trailers (along with other stuff). It really depends on what you want-open or enclosed, Steel or Aluminum. There are the Axle choices to consider too-Spring or Tor-Flex (and others, but these are the most commonly used). It also depends if you want a "show" Trailer or just a good one.

    As far as enclosed (no aluminum), I believe the best Trailer out there is the Wells Cargo-really good quality. for Aluminum enlcosed I'd say Featherlite.

    Open Trailers are a bit murkier-there are a lot of regional builders out there, so it's tough to give you "the best"-stay away from Big Tex=lower quality (they mass market them-they are the "Wal-Mart" of Trailers).

    I would look at the type of suuports under the Trailer ("C" Channel or boxed), how far apart they are spaced, type of Axle (I like the Tor-Flex the best, no shocks needed), did they run the wiring through conduit or is it just flappin' in the breeze, etc. Then there is the dilemna of Wood vs. Metal for decking-if it's wood be sure it's pressure treated, and some offer a Trex type of decking. Is it one or two Axle Brakes (some States allow for only one Axle Braking). I would recommend a Bulldog Cast Coupler on the Ball.

    Then you have to think about rating-remember that GVWR INCLUDES the weight of the Trailer, so deduct the Trailer weight to get your actual load rating. What a lot of people don't know is that the Tires and Bearings generally determine the GVWR rating.

    Tilt Trailers are good (I like them too)-the problem is that to get the Fenders down low they generally have to lift the Trailer up, so keep that in mind. Trailers can only be 8'6" wide (or you will have to run Wide Load signs). If you buy a Tilt, you might consider getting a shock-assisted Tilt-they are nice.
  9. chopped
    Joined: Dec 9, 2004
    Posts: 1,842


    Sometimes you can make one fender trailer removable, it lets you open the door.
  10. SaltCityCustoms
    Joined: Jun 27, 2007
    Posts: 1,208


    I plan on building my own enclosed trailer for my model A, it'd going to be a sixties style show car so I want a sixties show car trailer, yes i plan to drive the car but I want to bring it to a lot of long distance shows so that's when my trailer comes in handy.
  11. HellRaiser
    Joined: Jun 14, 2006
    Posts: 1,240

    from Podunk, NE

    I've got a Wells Cargo 24" enclosed. It works for me. I don't really use it for hauling, but it sure does make for a perfect spare garage, especialy in the winter time, or if I'm going to be gone for any length of time, and I want to take my garage with me.

  12. UnIOnViLLEHauNT
    Joined: Jun 22, 2004
    Posts: 4,823


    If you bought a project and you don't NEED to trailer it home, then it aint no project!

    I got my Suburban for $700, my 99 Carson 2 axle (nice) for $1k (both craigslist) and bought an 8k lb HF winch. Couldnt be happier.

    Unless you are going to haul nice stuff Id get an open. Reason being is that it seems thieves go for the enclosed. Enclosed = valuable contents. Ours was ripped off a few yrs back, it was a 2 bike trailer during Daytona bike something or other. It was all my bands shit, and we were still out like a gajillion bucks, but bet they were surprised when they opened it.

    Unless I was hauling nice shit Id never get enclosed.
  13. 35window, i will probably be talking to you ALOT over the next few months. I have been looking at the tilt-decks too. I'm leaning toward a low cost enclosed or high-end tilt deck.
  14. 35WINDOW
    Joined: Jul 7, 2005
    Posts: 453


  15. phat rat
    Joined: Mar 18, 2001
    Posts: 4,286

    phat rat

    Lots of good advice here. As said if it's just for projects or emergency hauling an open trailer is fine. You can buy a well built open for less than the cheap enclosed. Look for an actual car trailer not the cheaply made utility trailers they say you can haul a car on. A winch is a necessary addition if your going to haul many non ops, another nice addition is an electric jack. Also buy one with a dovetail unless you spring for one of the tilts. Some things to look at are GVW rating, lights, single or tandem axle brakes, lots of D rings for tying things down, (You might just find yourself hauling more than cars on it). Mine is an open center which is dropped down, I put treated 2X's down and can haul even a motor without having to worry about it sliding off the trailer deck.
  16. Yo Baby
    Joined: Jul 11, 2004
    Posts: 2,812

    Yo Baby

    There is a trailer called a Texas Roll Back that let's the deck lay nearly on the ground. I've seen a few around the race tracks and for an open trailer and a low car they are hard to beat,but a bit pricey.
    Most trailers whether enclosed or open are a pain in the ass with low cars,even with a "dove tail.Sometimes the dove tail will even exacerbate the problems.
    With the low car the major problem is getting the ramps and floors on the same plane for loading and unloading,or at least close enough not to drag on and off.
    So if your low car is to be your primary reason to have one,I'd consider the roll back.
  17. CTaulbert
    Joined: Apr 8, 2007
    Posts: 1,043

    from Detroit

    Those Texas Roll Back trailers are really nice. The lowest car can drive onto it and it's a piece of cake to load.
  18. Weasel
    Joined: Dec 30, 2007
    Posts: 6,708


    Check out Jim Glo tilt trailers from Jim Norris in AZ - Rolls Royce of trailers. Available open or closed, with almost half the side of the enclosed which opens up. Removable fenders too. They almost never come up for sale used - what does that tell you?

    If you cannot justify the $$$ for a tilt trailer, consider an electric tongue jack and a Tilt-A-Hitch. The Tilt-A-Hitch turns any ball hitch trailer into a tilt. Bought one from the manufacturer on eBay brand new for $169 - works great until I can buy that new Jim Glo. I also bought a 5.5 hp full size 9500 lb winch with fairlead etc. new on eBay for $288 - great deal and great winch at a fraction of other prices.
  19. marvbarrish
    Joined: Dec 23, 2007
    Posts: 199

    from SoCal

    Bought a 20 foot Pace Shadow trailer last year and so far so good. I'm real happy with it. I'm presently just using it for storage of the parts I'm not working on for my 38 Chevy. It's really nice to have that extra space around the garage.
  20. racer32
    Joined: Sep 22, 2007
    Posts: 745


  21. Saw an enclosed trailer that hauled a low drag racing door slammer.

    The owner built a ramp inside the trailer to get the car up high enough so he could open the car door to get out.

    He stored the jacks etc. in between the ramps.

    The ramps were plywood with several bulkheads for support.
  22. Pete1
    Joined: Aug 23, 2004
    Posts: 1,650

    from Wa.

    I have a 20' 1987 Hansen.
    I'm the third owner. Everything works on it.
    It looks like new outside. Inside there are the normal scuff marks on the floor is all. I know it has been back and forth across the country at least 20 times.
    I would buy another like this if need be.
  23. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 18,686


    Why do you need n enclosed trailer and what are you going to pull it with?
  24. Got mine in Claremore, (Starlite trailers) 18' open car trailer with dovetail, electric brakes, added a winch. it tracks good with and without a load. Only change I'm going to make is more tie down points on the deck itself. Oh yeah, I sprung for new tires rather than used, most of my trips are 800 miles roundtrip. I hate changing flats!
  25. I got a chance to see one of his trailors on Turkeyday............thanks Bob! I forgot the name of the company!! DOH! One of the nicest tilt beds I have ever seen.
  26. Bib Overalls
    Joined: Aug 3, 2001
    Posts: 4,064

    Bib Overalls

    I'd like to find a simple, light weight tandum to haul my highboy roadster and the Model T I am building. Something that does not weigh more than one of the cars. I'm thinking two tracks and open in the center. I could build one if I could just figure out a ramp system.
  27. 38zephyr
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 622


    Check out , Sloan kwik load trailers are really nice . $3395 plus options and freight from Texas . I have one and haven't had a single problem with it , moved probably 100 cars or more on it . Got lucky and found one here so no freight charges . Fenders come off with 2 wingnuts for getting in and out of the most slammed cars , only had to take them off twice so far . Everything really well thought out and built to last . I was dropping a car off one day next to the local trailer place and the owner came outside to check out my trailer , he said god damn that things built nice what did it run about $7000 ? I was thinking Featherlite when I bought this trailer , they are really nice also , but I got a roll back with a rock guard on the front etc. for a lot less money and it only weighs about 300 pounds more . With the rollback once you do it a few times , you'll be able to load or unload so quick you'll be amazed . I've carried enough steel trailer ramps to make me never want to do it again !
  28. I'm over the enclosed idea after seeing the kwikload & the tx roll back. I will probably be using my father-in-laws 02 GMC 3500 4wd w/ the lovely 8.1L big block. I love that truck. I made it from southern OK to southern KS on a full tank of gas.
  29. phat rat
    Joined: Mar 18, 2001
    Posts: 4,286

    phat rat

    You'll love that 8.1 for hauling. Here's my tow rig with an 8.1 going over the Big Horn Mts last June. The trailer is 24 ft and weighs about 3700# empty

    Attached Files:

  30. Here's one way:

    I used to store the 18" wide and 6' long ramps upside down on the deck, in between the rear wheels and hold them down with one bolt.
    Worked well.

    The ramps were more convenient when hinged, but since they were solid there was a lot of aerodynamic drag.
    So much so in fact that it took a lot of freeway to get up to 55 mph with the trailer empty.

    What you need here is a ramp with expanded metal.
    I believe you can get it in aluminum, but it will need supports closer together than if you built the ramps of steel.

    The wide ramps are a real bonus.

    They pivot after releasing the one hold-down bolt on the angled 1" square tubing.

    The tubing pivoted forward and had a tab to bolt to in case you wanted to run empty with the ramps fully down on the deck.
    As well as a one bolt hold-down to keep the air out from under the ramps and hold them flat to the deck.

    The pivots were simply tubing welded to the trailer and the steel reinforcing/pivot mount angle at the front of the ramps.
    Same size on both and two smaller ID pieces of tubing got slid inside each ramp for a hinge pin and it was retained by a quick release spring pin on both ends of both ramps.

    Only trick is, if you want the ramps to lie flat when traveling empty, you need to line up the hinge points and weld things up with the ramps lying flat on the deck.

    You'll end up with a small bump, about tube diameter high to go over, but it's not a problem.

    I'm sure you've seen setups with ramps that go into pockets at the back of the trailer.
    These can be advantageous if they're not too heavy.
    Adjustable transversely as well.
    Just pull em out and hook their angle on the trailers angle where needed.
    Just the thing for hauling the garden tractor....

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