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Okay...car trailer recommendations please!

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by rustyironman, Mar 2, 2012.

  1. bob giles
    Joined: Dec 4, 2007
    Posts: 147

    bob giles
    Member

    I needed good brakes so I installed hydraulic drums powered with a trailer mounted pump. The pump is activated and controlled by a standard truck mounted electric brake controller. I've used this system for 10 years with 3K-4K miles a year. The only problem is rust in the brake cylinders after sitting all winter.
     
  2. derpr
    Joined: Mar 11, 2007
    Posts: 257

    derpr
    Member

    I have a p&J trailer, Its well built has a ton of lights, reflective tape, I bought the tilt bed model, mainly cause I would be loading and unloading by my self. I put a cheap electric winch on the front. and well it dont get any easyer. unloading isn't hard eather. and 18 ft. min. on the length.
     
  3. i like hudson bros. rugged relatively cheap. set it up with a pintle... harder to borrow. I like electric brakes. nice to have if the truck blows a brake line.
     

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  4. RodStRace
    Joined: Dec 7, 2007
    Posts: 2,410

    RodStRace
    Member

    Looks a lot like mine!
    Ony things I don't like are the side mounted short ramps and the lack of good tiedown spots.
    To the OP, it's a lot like asking what kind of ax. Depends on the job.
    I've had everything from a 91 Dodge diesel truck (heavy!) to a wheel balancer (right now!) on it. Dead cars, running cars, parts, steel, and even my 4 post hoist. It handled it all.
     
  5. It took me a long time to find a trailer I liked. I ended buying a used one of these... http://www.bulldogtrailers.com/inventory?view=detail&id=91 . It tilts the whole deck with a floor jack setup that is welded to it, double trailer brakes, rated for 10K, and it has an 8K winch for pulling the car on. The only problem I have is that it is a full steel deck and the thing is starting to rust (on all sides...spent time at the coast). Anyone have any recommendations for a good paint/technique for redoing it? I'm thinking sandblasting would be way too expensive, and rustoleum might not hold up.
     
  6. gas4blood
    Joined: Nov 19, 2005
    Posts: 787

    gas4blood
    Member
    from Kansas

    Don't buy one of those 16' farm trailers with angle iron sides and tall fenders. I have used one for years because it was a freebie from the father in law. I have to leave windows open so I can get in and out of cars. They are rather narrow as well. Last week I bought ($1,500) a good used Park 18' car trailer with dovetail, electric brakes, and electric winch from a buddy. Finally a good trailer!:D
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012
  7. Pops1532
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 544

    Pops1532
    Member
    from Illinois

    I've heard good things about P&J trailers.
    I have a Behnke dump trailer. If their car haulers are built anywhere near as well as their dump trailers you won't be disappointed. Not sure if either brand meets the $3K criteria though.

    I've racked up a lot of miles pulling car haulers, construction, and dump trailers over the past 30+ years. I agree with those that warn against surge brakes.
    I also agree with those that say to get an 18' or longer trailer.

    Something I didn't see mentioned.....Go with bias ply tires if you can find them! Trailer radials are only good for 3-6 years (even if they still have good tread).
    I was going to be the guy that proved everyone wrong about trailer radials not lasting. I ALWAYS kept them properly inflated, they didn't have any cracks or weather checking. Two of them failed on a recent road trip. I'm a believer now. As soon as the budget allows that trailer is getting new bias ply tires.
     
  8. Wasn't much of a gasser then, that windshield only stayed in for about 10 minutes too...lol


    Yup the side ramps suck, especially with back issues. I got the 4 ft ramps and really need to figure out how to make them slide out the back. I just bought some D-ring plates that I'm going to weld into a couple of those stake pockets to help the tie down, although I haven't had any problems without them. I don't see myself putting stake sides on it either.
     
  9. phat rat
    Joined: Mar 18, 2001
    Posts: 4,452

    phat rat
    Member

    On my car trailer I've never used trailer tires. When it was 16' I used car radials or hd 15" truck tires. Since extending it out to 24' and getting heavier axles with 8 lugs I've used 245/75X16 10 ply truck tires the same as the truck runs. That way I have a pair of spares for either
     
  10. A Rodder
    Joined: Jul 13, 2008
    Posts: 2,477

    A Rodder
    Member

    Didn't read the whole thread, BUT...........Surge brakes SUCK

    I have an 18 foot 10K with a flat deck and 5 foot ramps that store from the rear. They are a tad heavy but store close to where you use them at. Unless you are only going to haul a car I wouldn't get a beavertail, or if you do, maybe 18". Get brakes on both axles.
    If you want it to sit low, go with 4 inch drop axles and see about getting the fenders removable.

    I don't do sales, just service and repair. I sold and serviced them for years then opened my own shop about 5 years ago.

    Any questions give me a call, Joe

    Joe's Truck & Trailer Supply
    541-746-0646
     
  11. A Rodder
    Joined: Jul 13, 2008
    Posts: 2,477

    A Rodder
    Member

    I FOLLOW YOU ON THE SURGE PART, WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT IN REGARDS TO BRAKE CONTROLLER IN A PLASTIC BOX, HOOKING THE POWER AND STOPLIGHT SIGNAL WIRES TOGETHER, FIGHTING CONTROLLERS AND DEATH WOBBLE?

    Are you actually recommending someone wire a controller to work automatically by itself mounted to the trailer and not have any control of it from in the tow vehicle?
     
  12. Clik
    Joined: Jul 1, 2009
    Posts: 1,885

    Clik
    Member

    My pulling truck is registered in my company name. When the safety nazis and revenuers see "Inc." they don't care if I tell 'em im not working that it's my hobby car.

    I drive tankers and have a CDL but wife doesn't and she drives sometimes.

    People are surprised when I stop at the scales in my one ton Dodge Dually empty. But since it is 11,000 GVWR I can get a hefty fine for not stopping.

     
  13. killa fab
    Joined: Apr 21, 2011
    Posts: 101

    killa fab
    Member

    Yeah you dont need a cdl for anything under 26000 lbs non commercial. But if you have a big truck/semi hauler i would get a cdl anyway. heck i want to get a cdl just for hauling heavy stuff
     
  14. Kerrynzl
    Joined: Jun 20, 2010
    Posts: 2,284

    Kerrynzl
    Member

    No , this was a response to a previous comment .Read it again!




    I will always recommend an "in cab" controller, but some people think the surge brakes are better because any vehicle can tow it!
    But you can wire electric brake controllers to be either "in-cab", "Trailer mounted" or both.

    You are not hooking the Stoplight and Power wires together [ as you say it ] You are actually splicing the brake controller wires together to get it's power source from the stoplights


    I lend my trailer, and sometimes hire it out to Racers
    So I wired mine to have both, and I supply a trailer mount controller when they use it [ unless they already have a controller ]

    It works very successfully except you cannot manually override it.[ but you cannot manually override surge brakes either ! ]

    The controller doesn't work "Automatically" the driver still needs to use the brake pedal to operate it .[ It is dead until the brakes are applied.]
    The driver still needs to adjust the settings on the trailer. And the driver doesn't need to "lock out" the brakes to reverse up.


    With a Timed Controller you can have the settings "slightly lazy" because they will "ramp-up" to the correct braking pressures [ then the driver usually lifts his foot off ]

    If the driver is too lazy to jump out and adjust the settings correctly,I tell him to ***k off and hire somebody elses trailer.

    Whenever I use the trailer myself, I must unplug the controller on the trailer because I already have one mounted in the cab [ the two won't work together parallel ]


    Here's a picture of a Cheap "Aussie made" trailer mounted controller that is waterproof [ and the plug ] but a timed controller actually works better
     

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    Last edited: Mar 20, 2012
  15. Clik
    Joined: Jul 1, 2009
    Posts: 1,885

    Clik
    Member

    I had a Ford dually with a 17,500 GVWR. If I pulled a trailer with a 10,001 pound GVWR I needed a CDL.

    If I had a 10,000 pound trailer I did not, in spite of the fact that the GCVWR exceeded 26,000 pounds.
     
  16. A Rodder
    Joined: Jul 13, 2008
    Posts: 2,477

    A Rodder
    Member



    I read post 41 and assumed you used the setup, now I re read and see where it is kind of a back up plan for when others use it, Sorry I mis read.

    Here is where I see the flaws in using it but I recognize now it is a back up plan.

    In the states almost everytrailer unless it is of the huge dually tandem equipment commercial trailer design like for bull dozers, etc. has brake lights that are also turn signals. Therefore, if the driver turns with his blinker he will get a slight pulse from the brakes. Also if he is not turning but brakes and then turns the flash of the brakelights will kill the signal to the controller and then it will just slightly pulse again.

    The ramp style controllers are called a solid state signal design. They do not take any outside factors into consideration while being used. You have 2 settings, the max brake and the time delay (ramp) in which the braking reaches its max. It functions this way every time you touch the pedal regardless of wether you are stopping from 5mph or 60mph or wether you are braking hard from someone cutting you off or making a smooth gradual stop. With this design you can't have it both ways, you need to be able to adjust the controller as your speed changes, you need to be able to turn the controller up for faster speeds and down for lower speeds. I don't see how you can do that if it is mounted on the trailer.

    While I can't stand surge brakes, the principal is correct in that it provides proportional braking, the harder you stop the more force is put on the brakes.

    A proportional brake controller is the best, it works in parallel with your truck braking and you still have manual overide.

    Quite possibly in your area the only electric controllers are the timed/ramp style or the proportionate style that need to be leveled.

    Check Tekonsha brake controllers out, I sell, use and install them nearly everyday. Starting with the Primus IQ, then the Prodigy P2, and finally the P3, those are the best controllers on the market.



    With the preface of acknowledging it has worked well as a backup plan for loaning your trailer out, I hope I explained what concerns me in a fact base response. I just don't feel this is very good setup for someone to use instead of an incab controller

    Sincerely Joe
     
  17. R Frederick
    Joined: Mar 30, 2009
    Posts: 2,660

    R Frederick
    Member
    from illinois

    Holy Macarel, that a stretch limo trailer. I have a buddy with a 23' Imperial. Looks like you could put 2 of those on yours.:eek:
     
  18. phat rat
    Joined: Mar 18, 2001
    Posts: 4,452

    phat rat
    Member

    Post 51 shows what I have now. This will be nice for my western parts hunt runs.
     
  19. Xdrag48
    Joined: Mar 1, 2009
    Posts: 469

    Xdrag48
    Member

  20. Kerrynzl
    Joined: Jun 20, 2010
    Posts: 2,284

    Kerrynzl
    Member

    Hey Joe,

    I just realize that we have different turn signals in NZ, Aust, and Europe.

    They are amber and are totally independent of the brake lights, so on our vehicles the brake lights don't blink with the turn signal .

    So mounting a brake controller on the trailer my method would not work with USA tow vehicles !

    you would need to splice in "Both" Stoplights together "after" a couple of diodes so it doesn't backfeed down the side that is blinking .

    Diodes work but , would start getting too complicated for the average trailer guy.




    Incidentally! I used diodes to mount an onboard GPS to my trailer [ hidden inside the 2 x 4 frame rails ] ,
    The aerials came out through some holes and were laminated between 2 pieces of plywood [ the GPS signals won't go through steel ]

    The GPS had a 30 day battery life between charges, so I spliced the "car charger" supplied with the GPS into the taillight AND the stoplight circuits using diodes to stop backfeeding.
    Whenever the brakes are applied or whenever the lights are on, the GPS is recharging.

    This is on an open center trailer, which will leave people scratching their head trying to find the GPS [ or the power source ]
    I run my harness inside the frame rails

    I also use a proportional Tekonsha on my vehicle, they're great!

    Heres the trailer I built .
     

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  21. Grayfox1442
    Joined: Aug 8, 2010
    Posts: 7

    Grayfox1442
    Member
    from Ohio

    The Road Clipper. It works great for me. Smooth, pulls nice and straight.
     

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  22. JF
    Joined: May 15, 2008
    Posts: 516

    JF
    Member
    from Utah

    Buy the biggest trailer you can pull, store, etc. mine is a bit to narrow between the fenders for big stuff unless you remove the outer duals and or it's a long wheelbase.

    heres mine.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  23. A Rodder
    Joined: Jul 13, 2008
    Posts: 2,477

    A Rodder
    Member



    Correct on the diodes. I use them regularly when setting up vehicles to tow behind coaches. You clearly have a knowledgeable background and built a very nice trailer. Your Gps idea and charging system is brilliant.
     
  24. LN7 NUT
    Joined: Sep 9, 2010
    Posts: 2,164

    LN7 NUT
    Member

    I had my trailer built in 98 and have since put on more then 500 000 km with no issues, I pulled my very first electric brake trailer in 2010 when I brought my 59 Suburban limo home and I really liked they way they work, but they seemed to fade with heavy use (the 3 electrics I have used since then had the same problem) but I might have been over working it...

    This summer I might swap my surge to electric... I've been debating it for some time with cost being the only issues so far.

    [​IMG]

    And a suggestion I will make to anyone with a trailer or thinking of building one/buying one, you can't have too may places to tie down, rings, tracks, pockets and rubrails all help a lot.
     
  25. vtx1800
    Joined: Oct 4, 2009
    Posts: 1,202

    vtx1800
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    XDrag48 commented on the tilt bed trailers from State Line Trailer in Braddyville Iowa, I've got a 20 foot tiltbed with removable fenders that really works well and was built by the same company (under a different name), my cousin has used up several of their trailers, but he is rough on stuff and put way more miles on than any normal person would and continues to buy them (he has an 18 foot tilt bed now), guess they are built ok!
     
  26. phat rat
    Joined: Mar 18, 2001
    Posts: 4,452

    phat rat
    Member

    Last year I found that Dexter now makes a self adjusting electric trailer brake. I needed new brakes on my trailer so that was what I put on it. I certrainly agree that there's no such thing as too many tie downs. On my 24' I have about 30 heavy duty D rings. When I get the new, to me, trailer home I'll be putting more on it, along with the sleeper
     
  27. LN7 NUT
    Joined: Sep 9, 2010
    Posts: 2,164

    LN7 NUT
    Member

    Tomorrow I'll post a photo of my trailer deck and the system my dad and I devised for strapping cars down, it works very well and very fast and easy.
     
  28. Kerrynzl
    Joined: Jun 20, 2010
    Posts: 2,284

    Kerrynzl
    Member

    Thanks for the compliments!

    On the pictures I posted, the GPS Aerials [ Antennas ] are inside the "Nerf bars" in front of the Fender. [ they are made of 2 pieces of plywood, with a groove to lay the aerial inside] The nerf bar sits inside a piece of Angle Steel.
    When I want to charge the GPS if the trailer hasn't been used for a while, I have a spare "trailer plug" made for my battery charger [ ground and brake light circuit ] but so far I haven't needed to use it yet .

    In NZ electric brakes are somewhat new here. Everybody has surge "Disk brakes" because of the huge amount of boat trailers here.
    Electric brakes don't like salt water.

    Our laws require "Driver activated" [ brake pedal ] brakes over 2500kg GVM so electric brake are now becoming more common.
    Our [ & Aussie ] have a max width of 2500mm or 8'3" , so most USA trailers are too wide for us.
    I basically copied a USA style trailer but built it to our laws [ and demands ]
    The biggest problem over here is trailers are easy to register as homebuilt [or custombuilt ] so theft is a problem with tandem axle trailers.

    I know of a dubious character that was registering trailers up to 18 months before he would steal them .
    When the cops come visiting him, he would prove that he had owned it for a while [ hence the GPS ]
     
  29. A friend and I built my 19' 4" hauler in 2000. That is the total deck length along with the 3' dovetail. It's 5" C-channel with 4x3 angle cross members on 16" centers. It also has a wrap tongue, 7K# Bulldog coupler, brakes on the rear axle with 3,500# axles,and ramps that store from the rear. Wiring is all run in conduit. Lighting is all rubber-mounted flush lights with LED taillights. There is a breakway battery located up front. I have a Braden 5K# electric winch permanently mounted on the front. Four large D-rings hold the load down. Mine has a diamond-tread dovetail with a wood deck. I've hauled on steel and wood decks, and much prefer wood over steel. Try loading a car or a farm tractor on a wet steel deck sometime, and you'll be sold on wood! I also run 700-15 8-ply bias tires that are rated for 2,400 pounds each. I've run radials on hauler before, and I'll never make that mistake again. Bias trailer tires are much superior to trailer radials, and WAY better than car radials that are not designed for trailer load stresses.

    With over 100K miles of towing success, I've never blown a tire, nor lost a wheel or burnt out a wheel bearing.
     
  30. A Rodder
    Joined: Jul 13, 2008
    Posts: 2,477

    A Rodder
    Member

    Lots of good info on this thread
     

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