Another trailer question

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Oldav8tor
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Another trailer question

Post by Oldav8tor » Tue Apr 23, 2019 10:39 am

I've acquired a nice, used, 2016 US Cargo 7 x 14 tandem trailer with a fold-down rear 67 inch ramp. Talking to the company, they say the ramp is rated for 1300-1500 lbs dead weight and 2500 transitional - I just wondered if any of you have found any need to reinforce the ramps on similar trailers and have any advice for me. I'd like to be able to also haul my 2800 lb M38a1 Jeep but that seems questionable without some modification. Comments?
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John.Zibell
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Re: Another trailer question

Post by John.Zibell » Tue Apr 23, 2019 11:00 am

It should be fine for the T. For the heavier vehicle, I'd place blocks about half way on the ramp for support to load and unload. The blocks would only have to be on each side, not all the way across. Also allow for the trailer to settle as you load so a bit of a gap between the blocks and ramp should be fine, probably about an inch or so.
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Re: Another trailer question

Post by Jeff Hood » Tue Apr 23, 2019 12:33 pm

Any reinforcement you add to the ramp door also adds weight that you will have to lift to close or support as you open it. You can tighten the balance spring to help, but then you get to a point where you have to pull too hard to open the door and it will snap shut when it gets to a certain point. I speak from experience. At work we had a ramp door trailer that was used to haul carts loaded with heavy equipment. it wasn't long before the small diameter caster wheels on the heavier carts punched through the 1/2 inch plywood ramp, so we made a new one from 3/4 plywood covered with 1/8 aluminum diamond plate.It didn't seem like we were adding too much weight, but it took two people to control it when lowering or lifting, so we tightened the spring. That helped balance the weight, but now it took two people, or one big guy, to pull it open, and it really slammed shut if you weren't careful. It's a delicate balance.

The current ramp should be fine for the T. For the jeep maybe make some 2x10 or 2x12 runners or some aluminum ramps that you can easily secure to the ramp door to drive over and then easily take off and slide them under the vehicle.

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FreighTer Jim
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Re: Another trailer question

Post by FreighTer Jim » Tue Apr 23, 2019 12:39 pm

Sounds like that trailer was designed for cargo - not vehicle - use.

I would limit the weight across it at what the manufacturer recommends.

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Re: Another trailer question

Post by Bills Auto Works » Tue Apr 23, 2019 3:16 pm

Manufacturers rate things well less than what they can actually handle to protect themselves! 300lbs will probably be within that range.

The only way you are going to know is to try it. Watch to see if there is much bow in the ramp as the vehicle is pulled up. As suggested, if you want to strengthen the ramp without adding weight to it. Figure out a way to put attachment points below the ramp, on the back of the trailer, then put two of those small aluminum ramps under the door. Make them removable & just put them in the trailer when not using.

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