Steel vs wood deck trailer??
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    Wvdeere's Avatar
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    Steel vs wood deck trailer??

    Been looking at getting a decent new dual axle trailer. Iím set on an 18ft with dovetail. They offer a wooden deck and a steel deck. The steel is about $250 more. My first instinct is go with steel however I recently loaded a buddies steel decked trailer with his implements and they slid everywhere. It was extremely slick. We set his rear blade down and the trailer was not on level ground and it almost slid off the other side. It was easy to maneuver things to tie down but I have had a small utility trailer with a wooden deck for over 10 years and itís still in great shape and has a lot more traction. What do you guys use and whatís your opinion?


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    userjh160's Avatar
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    You posted on my post a minute ago but I'll respond here. I also had a short debate with myself about the deck but was concerned about the slipperiness and scratching if I slid loaded pallets or implements across it.

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    I recommend wood deck. Steel deck is good for stake body trucks or dump trailers that you want stuff to slide out of.

    Thatís just my $.02.


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    I would also go with the wood deck, things donít slide and easier to add tie downs and replace as it ages.


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    me--i would go for wood decku should be able to get at least a good 20 yrs out of the lumber if its taken care off-IMO.

    my trailer sits out all yr long, and it still looks good for being 17yrs old this summer. the paint faded more than the lumber on the deck did. if i could of stored it out of the weather-i bet it would of lasted 30 yrs

    i never oiled it or added anything to it over the yrs. they must of used grade A for that floor.
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    An idea if you wanted to go with a steel deck, you could add horse mats before you load your tractor or equipment. This would help them from sliding around so much.
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    I had a tilt bed trailer with steel deck for a skidsteer in the rain or snow completely unusable. The balancing act to load equipment was terrible. But I would never again own a steel deck that wasn’t a dump trailer
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    Quote Originally Posted by gtmedic View Post
    I recommend wood deck. Steel deck is good for stake body trucks or dump trailers that you want stuff to slide out of.

    Thatís just my $.02.


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    Agreed.
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    I have owned a tilt deck steel bed car/open trailer and currently own a wood deck utility trailer. The wood in my utility trailer rotted out in three years so I am on my second set of boards as of last summer. Not sure if it was just cheap wood from the manufacturer or because I have to keep my trailer outside as to why it rotted so fast. Years ago I also had a car trailer with a wood deck and a dove tail. The frame of it cracked at the dove tail joint the first time I tried to load my Chevelle onto the trailer. The trailer was rated at 7500lbs so it should have held a 3800 Chevelle without issue. I think it was a poor welding job but I was not too enamored with the wood deck surrounded by a metal frame either. I bought that car trailer new because it was a good price but I guess when you don't care about your welding, you can sell it cheap!

    I prefer the steel deck I owned but mine was diamond plate. I owned that trailer years before I started with this tractor hobby/disease so I can't comment on slipperiness when loading a tractor. I never had a car or any other load slip when I didn't want it too. I have also never loaded anything on a cross slope either. That's too much risk for me.

    I prefer a steel deck because of the longevity of the deck (I don't live in area that gets a lot of road salt) and the robustness of it but I am usually hauling car with my trailers. The steel deck trailers are a bit heavier so that should be taken into consideration when determining if your tow vehicle can tow it. I do like the feedback of the other people on their experiences of a steel deck trailer when loading a tractor. That does give me a little pause as I am in the initial stages of getting another open deck trailer myself because I want the ability to haul my 3E series tractor.

    I think either style works just fine, so it's preference and depends on how you use the trailer and the conditions you use it in.
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    As with many of the opinions, I would go with the wood deck. It will rot out at some point but sealing it will make it last a long time. I sealed my wood trailer deck within a couple weeks of buying it and it looks pretty good after 5 years of abuse. My father has a steel fifth wheel trailer we use on the farm and its tough at nails but gets really slick with any sort of moisture. Now we pretty much use it only for hauling fertilizer tanks that are strapped down.
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