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Discussion Starter #1
I am passively looking at trailers. I am looking primarilay at a dual axle 7k gross (brakes on both axles of course). Trailer dealers are far and few between around here like everything else. If I could handle a 6 hour round trip I would have tons of selection.

I called a dealer that is the closest with any inventory who seems to sepcialize in Car-Mate. They are popular around here since they are made in Clarion Pa.

So I asked about a regular flatbed car hauler - he has none in stock. But as far as the beavertail he said he averages selling 1 a day (salesman talk, I know.....).

My initial use would be hauling Mrs. C's Beetle Bug which sits very very close to the ground. From what I have read that is the reason for having a beavertail. The only other use would be a purchase someday of a side by side machine. Only other use might be hauling my tractor (2520) for repairs some day if needed.

I know you loose 3' of deck space with a beavertail. But are there any other advantages to one that I might be missing.

Because of the volume this guy sells of his in-stock beavertails the price is quite a bit better than ordering one with a 7 week wait. He referred to his beavertails as his "loss leader".
 

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I had an 18' bumper pull that was 16' flat and a 2' beaver tail. Aside from the lost ground clearance I didn't have much opinion one way or the other. They do ease the loading angle which can be good for low clearance stuff, at the expense of ground clearance.
 

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You will likely want the beaver to haul the bug. Other two won't require it.
You *can* use the beaver portion as a load carrying area, as long as cargo can be properly secured yet, so you don't "lose" length completely.

Unless you are doing a lot of off road hauling with the trailer, the loss of ground clearance shouldn't be an issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
As usual I am at a loss until I take a ride to look at them. One concern for me are the ramps - the weight. It says the ramps for the beavertail are rear loading which I assume mean they slide into the rear of the trailer. The flat bed trailers in this class I've looked at on-line show the ramps being stowed into the sides of the trailer behind the axles.

So would the ramps on a beavertail be shorter making them lighter? It also seems an advantage to have them stowed in the rear - just slide them out and lift one end to attach.

This guy doesn't have any flatbeds in stock so I won't be able to compare.

Car Mate Trailers 2017 18 FT CAR HAULER
 

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I just bought a new trailer after selling one like you're looking at. 16+2 foot dove, 3500# axles. Although I had no issues with that trailer, I do wish I had not bought it in the first place. Once you subtract the weight of the trailer, it really can't haul much weight. Cars, sure. Small tractors, okay. But they can't haul a 3/4 truck or probably even a crew cab 1/2 ton truck. For not much more money you can get a trailer with 7000# axles.

As far as the dove tail design, definitely get ramps that load out the back. They are simple to slide out and set up, but surprisingly awkward if they are the side loading kind. My dove tail was steel diamond plate, and that can be slippery. When pulling the trailer around with your tractor, the dove tail can drag if you lift the 3pt too high.

The full tilt trailers are nice, but can be awkward if you can't make them tilt manually with what you're carrying. Meaning you might have to lock out the tilt function so it doesn't tilt when you are half way on, then get out of what you're loading and release it while at an angle. The power ones with remote are great, but spendy. The tilt can be slippery if you deal with hauling when it's snowing, too.

My new trailer has a beaver tail and big flip over ramps, 7000# axles. I think I'm going to like it a lot, and it will haul anything I want. 18+4 foot dove.
 

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Why do you need to haul the Beetle, and would that be a regular thing? Same goes for the tractor and side by side, the dealers have mobile service techs. It is a little more expensive for a field call than shop service but it's still a lot cheaper than tags and depreciation on a trailer.
 

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I have an 18' wood deck car-hauler with a dovetail. The ramps stow in from the sides and as you guessed, they are pretty heavy. Rear sliding ramps would be nice.

I dragged a rear corner of the trailer coming out of a gas station on the way home from the dealership. Within the week, I dragged it again when I backed it up an inclined apron at a friends garage and bent the license plate so badly that it was nearly unreadable when straightened. The second week, I installed an axle flip-kit to gain 5 inches of clearance.

I now have two 3' stepped pads that I put under the ramps when I load. They give me backhoe clearance when loading the tractor and also keep the ramps from sinking into soft ground or damaging blacktop. The treated lumber pads are heavier than the ramps.

I wouldn't buy another dovetail trailer as I seldom haul cars. The one I have now is going down the road when I get around to choosing a decent 12 or 14K equipment trailer.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I just bought a new trailer after selling one like you're looking at. 16+2 foot dove, 3500# axles. Although I had no issues with that trailer, I do wish I had not bought it in the first place. Once you subtract the weight of the trailer, it really can't haul much weight. Cars, sure. Small tractors, okay. But they can't haul a 3/4 truck or probably even a crew cab 1/2 ton truck. For not much more money you can get a trailer with 7000# axles.

As far as the dove tail design, definitely get ramps that load out the back. They are simple to slide out and set up, but surprisingly awkward if they are the side loading kind. My dove tail was steel diamond plate, and that can be slippery. When pulling the trailer around with your tractor, the dove tail can drag if you lift the 3pt too high.

The full tilt trailers are nice, but can be awkward if you can't make them tilt manually with what you're carrying. Meaning you might have to lock out the tilt function so it doesn't tilt when you are half way on, then get out of what you're loading and release it while at an angle. The power ones with remote are great, but spendy. The tilt can be slippery if you deal with hauling when it's snowing, too.

My new trailer has a beaver tail and big flip over ramps, 7000# axles. I think I'm going to like it a lot, and it will haul anything I want. 18+4 foot dove.
Quick question - do you have or see any need for stabilizers at the rear of the trailer for loading? I had a 16' landscape trailer with a ramp gate. The gate had a "knee" or brace that when in the down position held the rear of the trailer from dropping down when loading and lifting the rear of the truck. This feature worked great but don't know if it is needed with a beavertail.

Why do you need to haul the Beetle, and would that be a regular thing? Same goes for the tractor and side by side, the dealers have mobile service techs. It is a little more expensive for a field call than shop service but it's still a lot cheaper than tags and depreciation on a trailer.
When I get the timing belt done on the Beetle I want to be able to drop it off. I have some other work that needs done on it while it is there. Other than that it will not be a regular thing.

And with the tractor and side by side - as I recently found out - my closest Deere dealer is 140 miles away and does not offer delivery or mobile service.

Yeah....just rent a trailer when needed.....

I have an 18' wood deck car-hauler with a dovetail. The ramps stow in from the sides and as you guessed, they are pretty heavy. Rear sliding ramps would be nice.

I dragged a rear corner of the trailer coming out of a gas station on the way home from the dealership. Within the week, I dragged it again when I backed it up an inclined apron at a friends garage and bent the license plate so badly that it was nearly unreadable when straightened. The second week, I installed an axle flip-kit to gain 5 inches of clearance.

I now have two 3' stepped pads that I put under the ramps when I load. They give me backhoe clearance when loading the tractor and also keep the ramps from sinking into soft ground or damaging blacktop. The treated lumber pads are heavier than the ramps.

I wouldn't buy another dovetail trailer as I seldom haul cars. The one I have now is going down the road when I get around to choosing a decent 12 or 14K equipment trailer.
My first thought was a 10k equipment trailer. I had a 10k landscape trailer which I used a lot back in the day. But with the rails I couldn't open the doors on the VW's when loaded. Plus I hated the gate as it was not removable or able to lay flat - it was a huge wind drag when empty.
 

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I am passively looking at trailers. I am looking primarilay at a dual axle 7k gross (brakes on both axles of course). Trailer dealers are far and few between around here like everything else. If I could handle a 6 hour round trip I would have tons of selection.

I called a dealer that is the closest with any inventory who seems to sepcialize in Car-Mate. They are popular around here since they are made in Clarion Pa.

So I asked about a regular flatbed car hauler - he has none in stock. But as far as the beavertail he said he averages selling 1 a day (salesman talk, I know.....).

My initial use would be hauling Mrs. C's Beetle Bug which sits very very close to the ground. From what I have read that is the reason for having a beavertail. The only other use would be a purchase someday of a side by side machine. Only other use might be hauling my tractor (2520) for repairs some day if needed.

I know you loose 3' of deck space with a beavertail. But are there any other advantages to one that I might be missing.

Because of the volume this guy sells of his in-stock beavertails the price is quite a bit better than ordering one with a 7 week wait. He referred to his beavertails as his "loss leader".
I'm wondering if what you call a beavertail is the same as what we call a dovetail? Just a section on the rear that slopes down to make loading easier? Or is there some other difference?


This is a car hauler I used to have that had a 2 foot dovetail on the rear. And the ramps did slide in from the rear. It was a good trailer for hauling vehicles and made loading easier, but I got to the point I hardly every hauled vehicles any more and didn't like not having any side rails on the trailer for hauling anything else. I sold it and bought a utility trailer.

Shot1.jpg

For an even easier way of loading, this company belongs to a friend of mine, they build rollback trailers that have no ramps or dovetail, and they don't need them. If I did much serious hauling now I would seriously consider one of these.

KwikLoad Trailers

I noticed a dealer for them in your state on youtube.

Kwik Load Texas Rollback
 

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Quick question - do you have or see any need for stabilizers at the rear of the trailer for loading? I had a 16' landscape trailer with a ramp gate. The gate had a "knee" or brace that when in the down position held the rear of the trailer from dropping down when loading and lifting the rear of the truck. This feature worked great but don't know if it is needed with a beavertail.
Not really, but I have a 4wd truck. So I put it in 4wd if I'm loading something heavy. That's a lesson I learned watching a friend load a skid loader many moons ago, the trailer and truck cruising downhill with the skid loader on the very back and the rear wheels of the truck 2 feet in the air. I was laughing, he was not.

I don't think it's more or less prevalent with a dove tail trailer, but you can get weld-on round jack rings and DIY, or just carry a few short pieces of 4x4 if you don't have 4wd.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I'm wondering if what you call a beavertail is the same as what we call a dovetail? Just a section on the rear that slopes down to make loading easier? Or is there some other difference?


This is a car hauler I used to have that had a 2 foot dovetail on the rear. And the ramps did slide in from the rear. It was a good trailer for hauling vehicles and made loading easier, but I got to the point I hardly every hauled vehicles any more and didn't like not having any side rails on the trailer for hauling anything else. I sold it and bought a utility trailer.

View attachment 375546

For an even easier way of loading, this company belongs to a friend of mine, they build rollback trailers that have no ramps or dovetail, and they don't need them. If I did much serious hauling now I would seriously consider one of these.

KwikLoad Trailers

I noticed a dealer for them in your state on youtube.

Kwik Load Texas Rollback
I guess beavertail and dove tail are the same thing. This is what I am looking at.

IMG_0194.JPG

I don't want the rails of ramp gate this time.

That kwikload trailer is neat - like the way it works. We had a 30k# tilt trailer at work and everyone hated it - downright scary at times.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
There is a lot I don't like about the trailer you pictured, from the skinny jack leg to the lights waiting to be ripped off. We already discussed carrying the ramps around, that design is Preparation H approved.
Well that's what you get for $3k around here.
 

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Well that's what you get for $3k around here.
I'd bet the wiring underneath is all Scotchloks and loose wiring. LED lights and good wiring are a must, life is too short.

My new trailer is a Lamar, not the best but good enough. My old trailer like what you are looking at was a Maxey, and other than the axle weight I'd buy that brand again. H&H is not as good as it once was, but it's a decent brand.
 

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No Ramps

I am very pleased with my 22' PJ T6 tilt tailer. I special ordered it with traction bars on the rear tail and their "blackwood" rubber infused floor so there's never any traction issues. The tilt is very easily managed and super smooth. I love the low center of gravity too. For me, wrestling with ramps of any kind is not something I care to do. To each, his own.
 

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Support still a good idea

Not really, but I have a 4wd truck. So I put it in 4wd if I'm loading something heavy. That's a lesson I learned watching a friend load a skid loader many moons ago, the trailer and truck cruising downhill with the skid loader on the very back and the rear wheels of the truck 2 feet in the air. I was laughing, he was not.

I don't think it's more or less prevalent with a dove tail trailer, but you can get weld-on round jack rings and DIY, or just carry a few short pieces of 4x4 if you don't have 4wd.
I also have a 4wd truck but make sure I have the supports on the ramp when loading or unloading. I would rather not have my trailer lifting the truck and really wouldn't trust just having the front wheels locked via 4wd to keep it from sliding on a hill. I carry blocks to put under the ramp supports as a matter of routine.

The ramps on the equipment trailer fold; the ramps on the dump trailer slide out. I've never actually used the ramps on the dump trailer, just tested them but they are heavy and if I had to use slide outs on a regular basis it would get old. The only issue with the folding ramps is that I can't really cheat and have stuff hanging over the back.

If I had to buy another equipment trailer, I would go for an 18' with the bed above the wheels. It would be not quite as good for hauling the tractor but much better for loading hay, logs or stuff on pallets. Fortunately, with the grapple I can usually lift a log over the wheels but a flat bed would be easier. Honestly, if I wasn't using a trailer very often, I would just rent it. Taxes, licenses, tires etc. add up, not to mention just moving it around so you can cut the grass and worrying about a tree falling on it.

Treefarmer
 

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"Car haulers" have slide in or completely removable ramps. Equipment trailers have fold-up ramps.

7K trailers weigh about the same as a 10K trailer (2200-2500 lbs). But, they carry significantly less cargo weight: about 4800lbs versus 7500lbs.

The beavertail gives you a couple of extra feet of "ramp" making the incline a little less. This helps with clearance issues. The beavertail area can still carry weight providing it's properly secured (already stated). My ballast box will typically come down on the beavertail area. Zero issues.

I've owned two 18' equipment trailers (10k) and wouldn't do it any other way. The ONLY reason I personally could see with buying a 7k trailer is if you don't have (and never will have) a vehicle rated to tow closer to 10k and don't want to deal with any DOT issues. While it's perfectly legal to tow a 10k trailer with a vehicle only capable of 7k towing, you could get hassled about having a higher capacity trailer and may need to hit the scales to prove you're legal.

I currently own a BigTex 10ET 18', beavertail and fold-down ramps. I paid well under $3k for it, but I did have to drive about 3 hours to the dealer that would sell it for that price.

PJ and Kaufman are good trailers, and I would dump my BigTex in a hot second for another Anderson if I could find one.
 

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Trailer expenses

Why do you need to haul the Beetle, and would that be a regular thing? Same goes for the tractor and side by side, the dealers have mobile service techs. It is a little more expensive for a field call than shop service but it's still a lot cheaper than tags and depreciation on a trailer.
Yes, and trailer tires, brakes, paint, parking, ugly just sitting around. Love'em when you need'em, but costly. Rent one instead. If possible.

Yes, I have a trailer and yes, it's handy, but don't get my accountant into the discussion. I could rent the right trailer for different jobs for less than the cost of ownership.
 

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As usual I am at a loss until I take a ride to look at them. One concern for me are the ramps - the weight. It says the ramps for the beavertail are rear loading which I assume mean they slide into the rear of the trailer. The flat bed trailers in this class I've looked at on-line show the ramps being stowed into the sides of the trailer behind the axles.

So would the ramps on a beavertail be shorter making them lighter? It also seems an advantage to have them stowed in the rear - just slide them out and lift one end to attach.

This guy doesn't have any flatbeds in stock so I won't be able to compare.

Car Mate Trailers 2017 18 FT CAR HAULER
I have owned a couple of open deck trailers before. Both of them had a beaver tail. It is a good option to have. The first one I had was a lot like the one you have in the link. A couple of things to consider. Check the construction of the trailer closely, particularly at the beavertail. The first one I had did not have the proper welds and bracing there and the welds cracked the first time I used it, so the beaver tail wanted to leave the rest of the trailer while rolling down the road! I was loading a 70 Chevelle coupe on to it so not a light car but well within the supposed capabilities of that trailer.

Personally I do not like how the tail lights hang out in space on this trailer. I have a habit of knocking stuff like that off!

Those ramps are 50 to 60 pounds is my guess. I had some with the first open deck trailer and was not a real big fan. They are more awkward than anything. My solution was the next open trailer I had was a tilt deck. I really recommend one of those. Might be a few more bucks but...worth it. I also prefer steel deck trailers too. Yes, they are heavier but I have the truck to pull it so that is not a concern for me. If the cost of a tilt deck is too much then look at a trailer with spring loaded ramps that fold up/down and lock in the up right position when not being used. You find those mostly on equipment trailers but sometimes you see them on a car hauler.

The plusses of this trailer is I see it has a winch mount, stake pockets and a bumper bar up front. All of those little items come in handy. In addition to checking for brakes on both axles also check the size of tires and make sure they rated for the trailer load. What kind of suspension do the axles have? The best riding will be a torsion bar suspension with dexter axles. Not sure if you can get them with an open deck trailer, but I have them on my enclosed trailer.

Good luck with the purchase.
 
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