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Too_Many_Tools
04-16-2010, 01:18 PM
I would like to discuss what features and capabilities one would like to see on a trailer whose main purpose in life is moving machines.

Load capability...say about 5000 pounds.

Size...something one can park in front of your house.

Pulling requirements...something that you can pull with the average 1/2 ton pickup.

Let the discussions begin...
TMT

Jim Shaper
04-16-2010, 01:56 PM
How many machines are you going to be moving??

I don't mean to berate you here, but honestly, after you get your shop situated, how many times will you need those specific characteristics in a trailer?

I can rent a 4500# load rated drop deck trailer (the bed rotates down to sit on the ground) which will haul a good sized lathe (size wise, not a pacemaker) for a whopping 50 bucks a day. I don't have to license it, store it, maintain it, pay for it's whole cost... There's a LOT of benefits to paying a little at a time to use someone else's specialty equipment.

Even paying a rigger to move machines is more cost effective than spending several grand building a trailer. Had I built a trailer, I still would've needed to pay someone to move my turning center. That machine needed a 15Klb fork lift to pick up safely. They started with a 12K and it wasn't able to get it onto the truck. :eek:

Now if you're going to be traveling the country for days on end to fetch machines, then owning your own hauling gear might make sense (probably still cheaper to hire it). But, I haven't had to go more than a day out for any of mine.

dfw5914
04-16-2010, 02:32 PM
The biggest advantage of owning your own is scheduling. It's there when you need it.
Although I rarely need a trailer but now that I have one I use it fairly frequently and (aside from the initial expense) the ownership costs are very low, less than a two day rental.

I ended up building mine when I couldn't find a trailer (for sale or rent) with enough capacity at a reasonable empty weight.

http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n188/pmhurco/Trailer025.jpg

And when your daughter calls on a Sunday evening to tell you her car has broken down 200 miles away...
http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n188/pmhurco/StratusRescue005a.jpg

Too_Many_Tools
04-16-2010, 03:43 PM
How many machines are you going to be moving??

I don't mean to berate you here, but honestly, after you get your shop situated, how many times will you need those specific characteristics in a trailer?

I can rent a 4500# load rated drop deck trailer (the bed rotates down to sit on the ground) which will haul a good sized lathe (size wise, not a pacemaker) for a whopping 50 bucks a day. I don't have to license it, store it, maintain it, pay for it's whole cost... There's a LOT of benefits to paying a little at a time to use someone else's specialty equipment.

Even paying a rigger to move machines is more cost effective than spending several grand building a trailer. Had I built a trailer, I still would've needed to pay someone to move my turning center. That machine needed a 15Klb fork lift to pick up safely. They started with a 12K and it wasn't able to get it onto the truck. :eek:

Now if you're going to be traveling the country for days on end to fetch machines, then owning your own hauling gear might make sense (probably still cheaper to hire it). But, I haven't had to go more than a day out for any of mine.


I agree on the merits of renting...when you can.

When you need the trailer NOW, for days/weeks at a time or you drive hundreds of miles to pick up a machine...one needs to own it.

For the example of the discussion, I suggested ~5000 pound capacity...a range that an average HSMer would use often while still being able to have it parked in front of the house without having the neighbors going nuts.

TMT

taydin
04-16-2010, 03:58 PM
When you build your own, how do you go about obtaining all the necessary traffic permits?

KIMFAB
04-16-2010, 04:08 PM
I found a Big Tex 4900 lb trailer very similar to dfw's for $500. A couple hundred for new tires.
I have used it to haul my 3 ton Shizouka mill (very carefully) and several other machines and vehicles.

I park it in the back and it is there when needed.
I don't have to go to town to pick it up or worry about what kind of condition it is in if rented.

Glacern
04-16-2010, 04:18 PM
6'x12' tandem axle utility trailers are common. They have dual 3500-lb axles for 7,000 lbs gross capacity, or 5,750 lbs of cargo capacity. $1100-1400 will get you a basic trailer with DMV registration, but you'll want to add electric brakes on one or both axles as well as a brake controller in your towing vehicle.

I'm not sure how you'd get the tags for a home built trailer, as I've never made one myself, but a flatbed style would be preferable for side loading ability. Replaceable wood decking is nice too, especially if any of the machines are palletized.

camdigger
04-16-2010, 04:30 PM
Registration issues vary between jurisdictions.

Here brakes can be either electric or hydraulic (surge systems). The brake requirements vary too, some require both axles to have brakes, some allow brakes on one axle only.
Shop builts are easy to register as long as they have a serial number (you can stamp your own on) and the registrations are permanent for non commercial trailers.
Trailers are covered by the tow vehicle's insurance.

If money was no object, the drop deck designs would be cadillac, as the deck is raised and lowered hydraulically and is less than 6" high in the loading position.

John Stevenson
04-16-2010, 04:53 PM
Registration? Tags? Licensing ?

Can someone explain how it works in the US ?

If I want to build a trailer tomorrow and it's under 3.5 tonnes gross I can.

I do have to comply with various laws as regards brakes, sizes, lights etc but all I have to do is give it a chassis number and stamp the unladen weight.
It can't be more than 2.55m wide [ 8' 3" ] and no longer than 12m long [ 39' ] less the drawbar.

No test required at any point in it's life.

Too_Many_Tools
04-16-2010, 05:26 PM
6'x12' tandem axle utility trailers are common. They have dual 3500-lb axles for 7,000 lbs gross capacity, or 5,750 lbs of cargo capacity. $1100-1400 will get you a basic trailer with DMV registration, but you'll want to add electric brakes on one or both axles as well as a brake controller in your towing vehicle.

I'm not sure how you'd get the tags for a home built trailer, as I've never made one myself, but a flatbed style would be preferable for side loading ability. Replaceable wood decking is nice too, especially if any of the machines are palletized.

Mind providing some links to those trailers at those prices?

TMT

dfw5914
04-16-2010, 05:50 PM
The problem with the bargain trailers is they are so flimsy, the structure flexes almost as much as the springs. If you want it to tow well, the frame needs to be pretty stiff.

JoeFin
04-16-2010, 05:57 PM
Owning vs: Renting

If you have the space to store it then by all means build your own. Damm things have a 1000/1 uses

Be sure to incorporate a surge brake system and "Tie-Down Rings" welded with a safety through bolt. Tilt is a nice feature but it adds about 6" to the hieght of the deck. Stake Side is also a good feature and adds lots a versatility to the trailer

I hate using the ever popular "Hydraulic Drop Deck" as the damm things never seem to have a decent alignment. Any thing over 50 mph and they are waving in the wind like a fish tail

Mcgyver
04-16-2010, 05:58 PM
last time you said you were building 6 trailers this year? :confused: how's it going? this the first?

http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/showthread.php?t=39883&page=2&highlight=trailer

KIMFAB
04-16-2010, 05:59 PM
Mind providing some links to those trailers at those prices?

TMT
You don't give info on your location but in my area try this.
http://lasvegas.craigslist.org/rvs/1695043401.html

Keep checking Craigslist and ebay.
I bought mine from an older guy and told him he could use it anytime he wanted.

rockrat
04-16-2010, 08:41 PM
I hate using the ever popular "Hydraulic Drop Deck" as the damm things never seem to have a decent alignment. Any thing over 50 mph and they are waving in the wind like a fish tail

I have rented these many times and never had this problem. Are you setting the load forward enough to put the proper tong weight on the towing vehicle?

I will normally measure my bumper height and if it didn't drop 2" when adding the load, I move the load forward. Otherwise, the trailer will want to rock back just a little thus allowing the suspension to try and steer itself which results in the "oscillation of massive death". :eek:

First thing I ever towed I made this error and I thought the trucks rear tires would break loose from the pavement. I puckered so tight that I couldnt get my drawers off that night before bed. :D

rock~

snowman
04-16-2010, 08:49 PM
I have considered it, I finally decided that due to the limited space I have in my garage, and the fact that I don't have a good enough tow vehicle...I'm better off renting.

However, I had a great design in one of my sketchbooks. Basically a flat-loader wrecker. The deck slid back and pivoted down at the same time. It's relatively easy to move a machine up an incline with a decent winch. Just get'er goin, pull into place, pull flat bed into place, lock it in place and go.

Too_Many_Tools
04-16-2010, 09:26 PM
last time you said you were building 6 trailers this year? :confused: how's it going? this the first?

http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/showthread.php?t=39883&page=2&highlight=trailer

LOL...yeah this is likely to be "Trailer Year".

I have built trailers in the past..and purchased others...what got this spurt going is that I have a number of specialized purpose trailers in mind.

Machine hauling is just one need that I figured I would cover. I have found that like specific purpose vs. general purpose tools, trailers that are built specific for a purpose can be more useful than a general purpose one. I have the time and resources available to build several special purpose trailers instead of making my other more general purpose trailers do the job as they have in the past.

<whisper> And just because my wife thinks I already have too many trailers now does not mean that she knows what she is talking about. ;<)

TMT

HSS
04-16-2010, 09:32 PM
In arkansas you go to the assessors office and tell them you built a trailer and they add it to your property tax bill then you go to the revenue office and say "hey, I built a trailer and need license." They say have you assessed it? you say yes and give them the assessment number then they ask "how many axles?" You tell them either 1, 2, or 3 and they do the paperwork for a new title and send it to Little Rock, give you a license plate and you give them a check. No inspection, no certification, no-one cares. You ought to see some of the trailers on the roads around here. I wouldn't hook some of them to my truck, they are so shoddy.

Patrick

Dr Stan
04-16-2010, 10:05 PM
Registration? Tags? Licensing ?

Can someone explain how it works in the US ?

It varies widely from state to state. In Ohio I had to have a trailer weighed before I could license it. In Mississippi I simply filled out a form and did the same in Nebraska. In Kentucky I had to register my trailer and attach a small registration plate with a state provided VIN. No license is required as it is not a commercial trailer.

It is my understanding California has some very strict rules.

Vern2
04-17-2010, 12:30 AM
You guys got it all wrong. Buy the biggest trailer your wife can connect to the truck. Mine turned out to be 77" wide x 10 foot long. I split the rear gate so she could raise and lower it. Just built a front driver side fork lift gate. That way a fork lift can angle and drop lathe or mill over axle. See Home projects:
http://www.enichesoftware.com


Vern

The Artful Bodger
04-17-2010, 12:38 AM
If you need a trailer you have not got a big enough truck!:rolleyes:

Davo J
04-17-2010, 01:15 AM
This one always amazes me, not sure of the rules over their.
http://bridgeport.askmisterscience.com/bridgeport.htm
Dave

bborr01
04-17-2010, 01:29 AM
I own about 6 trailers or so.
Lots of maintainence. Sooooo......
My flatbed. I told a friend that has extra room in his pole barn that if he would store it for me, I would maintain it and keep it plated. (in Michigan, we have permanent trailer plates. Pay once.) He can use as his own. Nice arrangement.

My pontoon trailer. A friend of mine has a pontoon boat too. Instead of him renting a trailer twice a year or more, he does most of the maint. on it. (wheel bearings, tires and such) Same deal. Use it anytime he wants, just like owning his own.

SeaDoo trailer, speedboat trailer, lawn and garden trailer. I'm on my own with those. So far.:D

Come to think of it, I guess I am down to 5 trailers now that I sold the gooseneck and the other lawn trailer.

I have been eying those drop deck trailers and a nice big gooseneck though.

Brian

Jim Shaper
04-17-2010, 01:54 AM
This one always amazes me, not sure of the rules over their.
http://bridgeport.askmisterscience.com/bridgeport.htm
Dave

Considering 2000# really isn't that much of a load, that trailer is probably quite over built.

John Stevenson
04-17-2010, 05:40 AM
In arkansas you go to the assessors office and tell them you built a trailer and they add it to your property tax bill then you go to the revenue office and say "hey, I built a trailer and need license."

Patrick

What is a property tax bill ? We have what is known as council tax here, it used to be the old Rates tax covers civic amenities, rubbish, fire, libraries, police etc but it's a fixed sum based on where you live and the size of the property.

Nothing is added to it.

Do all states have this property tax bill ?

.

JoeFin
04-17-2010, 08:15 AM
I have rented these many times and never had this problem. Are you setting the load forward enough to put the proper tong weight on the towing vehicle?

I will normally measure my bumper height and if it didn't drop 2" when adding the load, I move the load forward. Otherwise, the trailer will want to rock back just a little thus allowing the suspension to try and steer itself which results in the "oscillation of massive death". :eek:

First thing I ever towed I made this error and I thought the trucks rear tires would break loose from the pavement. I puckered so tight that I couldnt get my drawers off that night before bed. :D

rock~

I've got so many miles towing boats, machines, and work trailers I can't count them

The 3 times I've used the Hydraulic Drop Trailers they all sucked to a varying degree. I use F250s for towing, the current 1 with a Turbo Diesel and Ford's 10K tow package. I don't think you can achieve decent repeatability raising and lowering the hydraulic suspension to have a good alignment on the axiels. Never took 1 apart to see how they indexed the axiels in the raised position but I suspect that is where the problem is

As for proper load position. When I pull over after the first 10 or 20 miles to check my load straps, I always feel my tires for temperature. That will tell you a lot more about proper load distribution then any thing else

Circlip
04-17-2010, 08:22 AM
Oh yea, and DON'T got to Toro Rosso for braking system designs.

Regards Ian.

rockrat
04-17-2010, 08:23 AM
What is a property tax bill ? We have what is known as council tax here, it used to be the old Rates tax covers civic amenities, rubbish, fire, libraries, police etc but it's a fixed sum based on where you live and the size of the property.

Nothing is added to it.

Do all states have this property tax bill ?

.

All states do it a bit different. I can speak for Ohio. The property tax here is based on real estate. The tax man (or woman) determines what your place is worth and they apply a tax to most of its value. I dont remember exactly what amount but they use at least 80% of what they think the value of your house is calculate what you owe.

This money does a few things. It pays for schools mostly. Also, it covers public services - ie - fire departments, police and sheriff departments, health departments and such. They are talking about adding a bit to tax water that is shead from property into the rivers. They already do this a bit in a different way.

Our property tax in Ohio, legality has been tossed around in court for some time now. It was determined that our state government had to find a different way to collect for schools but they never have and probably never will find a different way.

John, I would guess this is similar to your council taxes.

rock~

rockrat
04-17-2010, 08:32 AM
When I pull over after the first 10 or 20 miles to check my load straps, I always feel my tires for temperature. That will tell you a lot more about proper load distribution then any thing else

Yea, I was only curious how you did it. The trailer I rent might be a bit different. Once the deck locks in the up position, it does not move foreword or back. So I lock it up and then position the load and start lashing it down.

You make a good point there that I dont think I have see covered with trailers here before. I dont remember who taught me that but what good advice. Things move around and settle in as you drive. Straps pull and relax a bit, chains seat and wood gives just a little.

I will pull over about half way home at a rest stop and check mine a second time. I use it as an excuse to stretch my legs.

rock~

HSS
04-17-2010, 09:39 AM
John, our property tax bill is as rockrat stated for Ohio, but here in arkansas your property is valued by the number of structures on the property and their construction type, whether

or not your driveway is paved, and any other apparent improvements to the property. Then, you are taxed according to the personal property you own inside the home. They used to

value a color television higher than a black and white set but now they just value them all as color since very few have a black and white anymore. All my machines in my homeshop

would raise my tax burden if they knew I had them. They also value your home by the number of rooms in the house and just kinda lump the furnishings for each room to come to a

value. So, that means I pay tax every year on furniture that I may have bought 10 years ago. The tax never goes down or away and usually goes up. The tax is used for county gvt

and schools.

Patrick

Oh, I forgot to mention any vehicles you might own. They are also included in your personal property tax, cars, trucks, tractors, lawn mowers, boats, atv's, anything you own is

fair game.

Dr Stan
04-17-2010, 11:54 AM
John,

The tax system in the US is a crazy quilt of laws & regulations that not only varies by state, but even by county and city. Assuming all of us are subject to the same tax laws would be like assuming all Europeans have the same tax laws (or that Americans, Brits, Aussies, and Kiwees all speak English :D ) . For example some states base the vehicle license fee/tax on the value of the vehicle. Others use the weight of the vehicle as the basis for the payment. Some tax commercial vehicles used in agriculture at a much lower rate, others levy lower fees on all commercial vehicles. Go figure.

Like I said, its not consistent across the country.

Stan

Too_Many_Tools
04-17-2010, 12:26 PM
I would like to discuss what features and capabilities one would like to see on a trailer whose main purpose in life is moving machines.

Load capability...say about 5000 pounds.

Size...something one can park in front of your house.

Pulling requirements...something that you can pull with the average 1/2 ton pickup.

Let the discussions begin...
TMT

I would not consider taxes to be a major issue.

But being able to pull a trailer of reasonable capacity that you can easily store is.

TMT

JoeFin
04-17-2010, 12:40 PM
Well there are ways around "Taxable Value" - at least in California there are.

If you start out by buying a totaled trailer - but at least it has tandem axles with brake drums for $200, and then you completely rebuild it to the specs you need. That original $200 receipt is what the DMV is going to use to affix a taxable value on the trailer.

Far be it from me to suggest you pay cash and ask for a receipt stating a price LOWER then what you actually paid - that wouldn't be quite honest now would it. Come to think of it - WHO in politics IS quite honest