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buing a trailer.....

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buing a trailer.....
  • im buying a horse and looking into getting a trailer aswell.....except i have no clue what to look for in a good trailer..... i guess we can start with reliable brands.... i am starting to think an aluminum trailer will be best for me since i will be traveling a lot. is it true they never rust? well any help will be greatly appreciated
  • Good brands include Exiss, Circle J, Logan, Miley, Thoro-Bred, um, there are a lot of good ones out there.
     
    Aluminum is great if you can afford it.  They are much more expensive but lighter which gives you more leeway on what you use to pull it.
     
    I've had both straight-load (2 horse) and slant-load (3 horse) and I've liked both but I do find that horses tend to load much easier in my 3 horse with a ramp and I have a tack room which I didn't on the 2 horse.  The 2 horse had mangers to put hay in which was nice, the slant load you have to use hay bags.
     
    I have a bumper pull because I have a dually and a Ford Expedition and can pull my trailer with both vs. if I only had a gooseneck then I could go anywhere when my husband was out of town with the dually.
     
    If you are buying used, have someone who knows horse trailers check it out for the floor boards, wiring, amount of rust, etc.
     
    Goodluck!  Having your own trailer really sets you free although then people start asking for rides!!
  • Brand new trailers are very expensive, especially the aluminum trailers, even used aluminum. They are everyones - wish list item, but unless you have a lot of cash, that's usually where it stays - on the wish list. Unless of course some dream deal falls in your lap - lol - take it!  Featherlight are also a very good brand alum.
     
    I personally prefer a slant load simply because I think it's safer loading, traveling and unloading than an open or straight.  Everyone has their preferences.  Ramps are great if you can get one with it.  We went with a gooseneck just because we wanted a weekend or living quarter type and already have a 5th wheel setup for our pickup - they pull nicer than the BP type I think too, but again, everyone's preference and the goosenecks do cost a bit more.
     
    I looked on Craig's list and called all the local dealers to find out what they had for trade-ins.  Those are where you can really find some of the greatest deals.  Mine is a 3 horse slant Titan steel, but in very good shape and had a lot of extras.  If you are looking to just go to shows or travel down the road a bit, you can get by with less and smaller, but if you want to travel, camp or really hit the show circuit, you will want something with a good sized tack/dressing room or living quarters, or weekender package.
     
    One thing to really check besides the items listed in the above post is the trailer brakes.  A good system can cost $900 to replace so make sure they are in good working order before you buy.
  • If you can afford aliminum then yes that is def the way to go, low maintenance, light, and good to look at. I prefer a gooseneck, just personal pref, but at the moment I own a bumper pull so go figure. If you are buying used make sure to check floors, lights, tires, brakes and bearings....Kevin
  • A friend got a great deal on an aluminum and he drove to TX to get it - from TN.
  •   There are many things to consider when trailer shopping and unfortunately, you won't know what the answers is until you do some hauling.
     
      The first consideration is your tow vehicle if you already own one.  If you will haul with a large SUV or a truck that has a shell, camper or large tool boxes, you will be limited to a bumper pull.  The stopping ability is as important as the pulling capacity.  Pulling more trailer than your vehicle can handle will cause expensive repairs (brakes expecially).
     
      Aluminum vs Steel.  There is a misconception that aluminum is lighter than steel.  If the trailer is all aluminum, it will only weight a few 100 pounds lighter because the frame has to be beefed up to have the stuctural strenght of steel.  More common is a steel frame with an aluminum skin.  They will be lighter and less costly than the 100% aluminum.  There is a huge variance in brands both steel and aluminum.  There are lemons with some big name brands and there are some gems made by smaller local builders.  Check the workmanship on the welds as a guage of quality.  Extra bells and whistles don't make up for poor quality.  Many newer steel trailers have rust issues very early.  Check the roof seams. 
     
      Most important consideration aside from roadworthyness and safety has to be is it the right size for my horse?  Stall size varies as does trailer height.  7 high by 7 wide should be a minimum for a slant load hauling a 15-16 hand horse. 
     
      Personal preferences would include step up vs ramp.  Some horses load better with one or the other.  If you will use the trailer for other applications, one style will work better than the other.  Straight, slant, rear facing and stock all have their advantages.  Most horses will load and ride better in slant loads and stock.  Straight loads are typically less expensive and the stalls can be the largest.  Stock are the most versitle (haul hay...) and least expensive.  You want at least one spot per slot to tie the horse.  2 per is better.  Drop down windows, bars and  screens add quickly to the price.  What size trailer to buy?  The general concensus is to buy more than you think you need.  If you will only haul one horse, buy a 2 horse.  2 horses, buy a 3 horse.  12-14 ft stock trailers are a handy size.  You can squeeze 3 horses in them and they aren't much bigger than a 2 horse.  Used 3 horse trailers are the highest in demand and will often go for a higher price than a  used 4-5 horse.
     
      Bumperpull vs gooseneck.  Bumperpulls are cheaper, lighter and in the 2 horse version more plentiful used.  If you can't afford a special tow vehicle, they can be safely pulled with larger SUVs or mid sized trucks.  They are shorter in length and can fit into smaller trail heads.  They take more practice to back smoothly,  They can sway more and will offer a less stable ride for the horse.  For short hauls they easily fit the bill.  Goosenecks are heavier, more expensive, easier to back, harder to fit into gas stations, eat more curbs (they pivot inside the radius of the turn whereas BPs follow the same path of the tow vehicle).  Goosenecks have the advantage of a build in place to sleep for overnight trips, offer a more stable ride in long hauls (doesn't tire out the horse) 
      
      New vs used.  New trailers are expensive and I would stay away as an initial purchase until you have a good handle on everything you want and need in one.  Used can be all over the place from unsafe to the deal of the century.  I would not look past a 20 year old steel trailer.  If it's still on the road with little to no rust, that's the best testament to it's constuction and care over the years.  A 20 year old trailer that was only used for summer showing would be more attractive to me than a 3 year old that was used to haul cows weekly.  Hitch up any trailer you are considering and get it up to highway speed before you seal the deal.  Does it pull to one side, fishtail, sit on it's butt, make the tow vehicle squat....  Color is a consideration.  Not to match the truck but a white or silver trailer will stay cooler in the summer.  Interior color of white or silver will also be less "cave like" and easier to load into.
     
    And I've only scratched to surface....
     
       
     
     
     
  • [quote=danastark]

    If you are buying used, have someone who knows horse trailers check it out for the floor boards, wiring, amount of rust, etc.



     
    Additional things to check are axles, bearings, trailer brakes (should have them!!), frame, tires.
     

     
  • Any brand all aluminum trailer to stay away from?  We have been looking at Elite, what do you think?
  • Elite is a VERY GOOD brand of trailer. 
     
    Also--  another good brand is 4 Star
  • If buying used make sure it is a good brand it might be worth buying something you can can do up as such to personlise it , get it cheaper if it is well used https://www.rodaukltd.com/  do ours up and they look fab afterwards