Which dump trailer to buy?

Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane

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One and a half cord load.
The old way, and the "more gooder" way.
Most firewood vendors around here use dump trailers or one tons with landscape dump beds.
When I bought the GMC 5500 flatbed we did not have a pickup, and this was affordable. It worked pretty good for many years. However, it cost about $2,000. to $2,500. a year in plates, maintenance and insurance. Loading and unloading were very time consuming. Especially unloading by hand. Strapping the load would make removing the yellow socks, used as load containment when transporting, difficult at times. I carried a 2" x 4" and long pry bar to shift the pallets apart. Strapping two pallets at a time, in order to run the straps, then up/down for two more, etc. It also required cleaning gravel and leaves from the bottom and inside of pallets with a broom. All very easy, but lots on on/off the forklift to load. Then stopping in route to tighten straps due to settling wood.
IMG_4664.jpgIMG_5463.jpgOpps...IMG_5463.jpg
The new way. Five of the seven rows loaded.64143591352__E6E05AC9-3D8A-4FD0-96ED-EFA1603EE48B.jpgIMG_4982.jpgThey wanted it dumped in two piles. 2/3 ended up in the second pile.IMG_4986.jpgIMG_4991.jpgWrapping up the control cable to pull ahead. There is a fob, but it doesn't always connect to the antenna so I don't bother using it. Yesterday our son gave me two magnetic hooks. One for the front and one for the back of the trailer to hang the yellow control box on. Very handy when using the tailgate ramp mode when loading.
16' box gets pretty high. Lower end of box is only inches off the ground.
IMG_4993.jpgSweet! What's not to like?
I used to spend a lot of time loading and unloading. Stacking takes a little time but I don't mind it. I calculated the cubic inches in a cord and a half. The trailer is 82" wide and the firewood 16" long. Seven rows 36 1/4" high. Snapped a chalk line on both sides, layed out seven pieces along the edge for seven rows, for a balanced load on the truck and trailer.

With the tailgate in horizontal position, I can walk around the bundle to unwrap the netting as I stack in the trailer. The bundle is suspended above the tailgate. Works very, very well. The mess for the most part stays home, and the pallets get stacked to reuse.

Why stack in the trailer? The numbers. The bundles are 1/4 cord plus. The plus part... is about 15% over a cord for four pallets. At four hundred pallets, 100 cord, that 15% stacks out to fifteen cord. I have about 120 cord, so that's 18 cord more when stacked, which is basically a semi load. A semi load of logs, or 20 cord load of logs yields 16-18 cord, cost to me $2,100. In the cord and a half load pictured, 15% over would be almost 29 cu. ft. or .225 cord overage. At $300./cord that's $67.50 worth of sellable wood, previously given away when sold in pallet form. More than that, the customer can now see they are getting the full quantity that they are paying for. The old way, they just had a pile of wood and no context to compare too. So even though they got more, 115% actually, they were still uncertain they were getting enough. Kind of a lose/lose for both buyer and seller.

I took delivery of the trailer in Dec. Just beginning to really use it for firewood and our sons deck project, hauling equipment and materials.
I am really happy with this decision after some initial second thoughts about cost. As things get more repetitious, as processing and deliveries both via for my time and energy, I'm predicting I'll like it even more. And in a couple years the cost factor will seem less relevant, like the Thule atv pull behind tandem axle trailer that was $1,200. twelve years ago. There is already a savings over using the larger dedicated firewood truck. How much depends in part on how much additional maintenance the ten year old pickup requires.
IMG_4999.jpg64071977800__C2FDED5F-5B7C-48A0-A6AC-B2A722540638.jpg
 
Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane

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It is hooked to the truck more days than not.
Two cord delivery yesterday, and the same tomorrow.
Margaret does go on many of the deliveries that are repeat customers and I know their driveways are tight.
With the old truck I could get turned around in tight spots without any help. But I don't miss the big truck at all.
Two cord stacked works well. I don't think two would fit without stacking.
If the rain lets up to finish loading I may hit the scales to see what the hitch weight is loaded.
Edit: Two cord is nine rows stacked 37 1/2" high. With some variation in split length it stretches out to almost the length of ten rows, or over thirteen feet stacked.
 
Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane

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Added note:
I emailed BWise this morning about removing the rear tie downs, asking if the bolts were threaded into a fixed insert, or if it was loose, making for difficult reconnection.
I received a reply within two hours that the D-rings are threaded in, and should not be an issue with reattachment when needed.
That's customer service!
:drinkingcoffee:
 
sean donato

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Sandhill That's one sweet trailer. I have always felt like a dump trailer is just as handy as a pocket on a shirt. I wouldn't be without mine around the farm.
Just recently being a co-owner of a dump trailer I feel the same way. From logs, to dirt, to now full of shingles from the house roof, I don't know how I lived without access to one.
 
Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane

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Dump trailers are becoming almost as common as four door pickup trucks.
The young bucks on here have probably never seen a two door pickup truck, or a gas station that serviced cars and had a jeep cj with a snow plow and jumper cables for service calls. My first car was a '53 Ford two door with a sun visor, vacuum windshield wipers, and a positive ground battery and generator. It also had an oil bath air filter. Wait, that may have been the '51 Ford one ton pickup with split rims, and no syncros. Had to double clutch it up and down. Well, first gear anyway. After that you could get by with out the clutch, until you missed a gear and had to all but stop and start over.
 
sean donato

sean donato

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Dump trailers are becoming almost as common as four door pickup trucks.
The young bucks on here have probably never seen a two door pickup truck, or a gas station that serviced cars and had a jeep cj with a snow plow and jumper cables for service calls. My first car was a '53 Ford two door with a sun visor, vacuum windshield wipers, and a positive ground battery and generator. It also had an oil bath air filter. Wait, that may have been the '51 Ford one ton pickup with split rims, and no syncros. Had to double clutch it up and down. Well, first gear anyway. After that you could get by with out the clutch, until you missed a gear and had to all but stop and start over.
My first truck was a 75 f250. 360 fe. No power steering or brakes points ignition. I have no fond memories of that thing. Passed everything but the gas station. Major rust bucket. Actually just sold it a wile back. Went to a 93 f 150 extended cab short bed. Loved that truck. Also decided at that point I'd never buy another std cab. Save the 73 high boy I have, but that's more sentimental then anything.
 
rancher2

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Sandhill My folks had a small truck stop and filling station when I was a kid in the 60's-70's and we had a old Willy's Jeep with four chains on it and a snow blade with about fifty foot of jumper cables hanging off the front. With a starting unit in the back. We also had a 8 N Ford with loader and blade for snow pushing. Even us old guys seem to be moving into four door pickups. My farm knock around truck is even a four door now days. Found a 2011 with thirty thousand miles on it a couple of years ago so now I have a four door pickup with heated leather seats for a every day farm truck.
 
Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane

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Removed the rear D-rings. Dumps nice. Backed up near the guys stacked wood, maybe six or seven feet, as last time the first row just tipped over and the rest sat on it until I pulled ahead. This load shot two rows out. Thought I was going to knock his stacked row over. Two pieces hung up, one on each mid D-ring.
Another tight spot too, with a lot of tire scuff with two cord. Took two tries to get in. Oh well! The axles are still under it. Sprinklers and fencing intact. Plus he can still get his car out of the garage, and the one parked on the road can get in.
Cut the post by 3" and Margaret said 8" on the right side truck door.
 

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CaseyForrest

CaseyForrest

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When I had a dump, I had 2 batteries that I would swap out when I was using the trailer every day. Replaced the nuts on the posts with wing nuts for easy swap. This allowed 1 battery to always be on the charger and ready to go.
 
CaseyForrest

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Modern vehicles dont provide the current and amperage needed to charge a battery on a dump trailer through a 7 way plug.

I could get 7 or so dumps on a single battery charge all in the same day before getting the bed back down on the 7th dump became iffy. The trailer plug can not keep up with that so having a second battery ready to swap out was beneficial.
 
Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane

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Thanks.
Good to know.
We have the RV battery to swap out.
I have been running to our sons, an hour one way, three or four times a week.
The larger firewood loads obviously take some juice. Not only is the box power up/down, so is the tailgate and jack.
It does get plugged in over night on occasion.
 
Big_Eddy

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Modern vehicles dont provide the current and amperage needed to charge a battery on a dump trailer through a 7 way plug.

I could get 7 or so dumps on a single battery charge all in the same day before getting the bed back down on the 7th dump became iffy. The trailer plug can not keep up with that so having a second battery ready to swap out was beneficial.

I haven’t had to charge my battery off the trailer - ever.
1 or 10 loads a day, it hasn’t been an issue. Typical travel distance is 20-25 km each way per load, so 30-45 mins drive time per dump.
If you’re only doing 5 min trips, it could be different



Sandhill
Interesting place for the spare. How easy is it to get down, fully loaded? Right now my spare rides in the truck bed - when I remember it. I need to mount it so it won’t still be at home the next time I have a flat. [emoji3525]


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CaseyForrest

CaseyForrest

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My trailer never stayed attached to the truck, so it never benefited from being connected to the truck battery overnight. 7 dumps in a single day when I was running gravel or logs and that was about it. Figure approx 10 hours of total time the trailer would be plugged into the truck.

@Jhenderson, turck charging system functioned fine as the truck never had an issue keeping its battery charged. I can not speak to the battery that went with the trailer when I sold it, but the other battery that was in rotation I still have and its primary function now is to run my 3 point sprayer. I put it on the charger about once per year.

For MY specific uses, the 7 way plug never provided the neccessary charging abilities to keep the trailer battery topped of. If I was only dumping once or twice a day, I could get away with leaving it in longer.
 
sean donato

sean donato

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My trailer never stayed attached to the truck, so it never benefited from being connected to the truck battery overnight. 7 dumps in a single day when I was running gravel or logs and that was about it. Figure approx 10 hours of total time the trailer would be plugged into the truck.

@Jhenderson, turck charging system functioned fine as the truck never had an issue keeping its battery charged. I can not speak to the battery that went with the trailer when I sold it, but the other battery that was in rotation I still have and its primary function now is to run my 3 point sprayer. I put it on the charger about once per year.

For MY specific uses, the 7 way plug never provided the neccessary charging abilities to keep the trailer battery topped of. If I was only dumping once or twice a day, I could get away with leaving it in longer.
Can't say I've had an issue with the 7 way not keeping the battery charged, last week I hauled around 15 loads of dirt from the neighbors to my place. Never had a low battery, from dumping too much, and when I plugged in the float charger after the last load wad dumped, it was done charging in about 5 minuets. Unless your set up Is way different then what I've got its not really a power hungry pump motor. mine has twin telescoping rams.
 
Big_Eddy

Big_Eddy

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My truck will only feed charging power to the 7 pin when running. The trailer may stay attached overnight, but no charging benefit from that.

Power up, gravity down, 12’ 3 stage cylinder here. 1 cord loads


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