Which Trailers to Look at
Sometime between now and the end of the year I will likely be looking into buying a trailer, so I am starting the process of looking at manufacturers or seeing if the right used trailer comes along. Since I am just starting this process I would like some brand recommendations!
I want a two horse bumper pull, preferably straight load, but I'll also look at slant load as well. Aluminum is preferable, but steel is also an option. I would like something that is fairly open, kind of like this: http://www.peoriatrailersales.com/stock.cfm as opposed to a completely enclosed trailer. My guy seems more comfortable loading in something airier. Because of this I may look into stock trailers, but I also would like a ramp, divider, escape door, and tack room. Not one of those little compartments that you can put items, but something you can walk into. Doesn't have to be huge, but big enough to fit my show items and a standing person!
My horse is a 15hh quarter horse, so I don't need anything giant. I don't want something too small though in case I have the occasion to haul something larger. What height would you recommend, and what stall length and width?
So, what can you think of that would fit this description? Anything that I should avoid? Any other aspects that I am overlooking? I don't have a set price range just yet, but anything over $15000 (perhaps lower) will be too much, so please include rough prices if you can! Thanks!
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I just bought a 2001 4star aluminum warmblood-sized 2 horse bumper pull, straight load with a ramp, divider, enormous tack room, etc, for around $9k after all the taxes/registration/etc were paid. I looked extensively for a used bumper pull trailer in my area, and used aluminum bumper pulls in varying condition seem to be worth between $7k on the low end to $15k, and new ones go from $12k to $25k. The 4star I bought was around $24k when it was new from what I can tell. You can get used steel 2 horse trailers for anywhere between $500 and $5000. Some of these can be in pretty bad shape, and a lot of the really old ones may not be very safe. I unfortunately witnessed an accident this spring where the rear door failed on an old steel trailer which did not have a butt bar, and the horse fell out. It was really awful. :( I'm not saying that all steel trailers are unsafe, or all old trailers, but watching that happen certainly influenced my trailer purchase. We stretched our budget a bit to get our trailer, but the thought was that my horses would be safer and more comfortable, and the trailer would last us. I think that within reason you should get the best trailer you can afford.
PS: When I asked around, everyone told us that Calico trailers were cheap and did not hold up. I seriously considered one because they are what the local dealership sells other than the random used trailers they get in.
Get the best quality trailer your budget will allow.
If you're horse is 15 hands, you can get away with the standard 7' height, so that opens up your options a bit. He probably can also fit in both straight and slant loads, so that's just a matter of personal preference for you. If you can find an older Featherlite, they tend to hold up very well over time and are a nice quality aluminum trailer. I would stay away from Eclipse. They are a bottom line brand and tow like a sack of potatoes. I don't know much about the other all aluminum brands.
If you go see anything, pull up the mats and look for any pitting on the aluminum floor. A little is okay on older trailers. Just nothing too excessive. Also look at how close or far apart the welds are. The better brands have more overall and more frame integrity. You can probably find a nice one for about $5,000.
I went to Oaklahome and spent $4,000 on a 2 horse slant load bumper pull. I believe it is an Equine Pro. Here is a picture. Went to OK since there was no sales tax.
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