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Requesting Hunting ATV Trailer Advice

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by Barr, May 17, 2020.

  1. Barr

    Barr Member

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    Good morning. My question below pertains to hunting equipment I am putting together for joining a deer camp this fall.

    I recently purchased a Honda Foreman 520 which for discussion purposes weighs 750 lbs wet. The tow vehicle is a manual transmission light SUV rated for 2,700 lbs towing. ATV was bought for moderate hunting and OHV Trail Riding.

    I am looking at utility trailers and seeking advice.

    My requirements:
    1. Treated Wood Floor - Replaceable, adds some weight to empty trailer, stiffens frame / body, and tie-down cleats can be added.
    2. 5'x8' bed - large enough to haul ATV, plywood, 1-2 deer w ATV or camping supplies.
    3. Loading Ramp - easy to load wheeled vehicles (lawnmower, ATV, etc)
    4. Trailer weight < 900 lbs
    5. Keep total tow weigh near 1,500-1,600 lbs.

    Using criteria it looks like a Carry-On 5x8GW is the golden ticket. 15" dia tires, 3,500 lb axle, tongue jack, treated floor, ramp, A-frame tongue, and 775 lbs.

    Pipe top trailers are very handy for easy tie-down and no strap cutting potential but typically come in 5'x10' trailer sizes that weight exceeds 900 lbs.

    My questions are as follows:
    1. Is there a better trailer for <$1,150?
    2. Trailer weight does go up 375 lbs on Carry-On 5x8GW vs the 5X8GW2K.
    3. Is it worth the +$200 to buy
    -A-frame tongue vs straight tongue
    -3,500 lb axle vs 2,000 lb axle
    -15" dia tires vs 13" dia tires?
    4. Is there any advice on 15" vs 13" tires for towing? My thought would be that larger dia tires weigh more and increase drag but should roll easier, particularly if towing a trailer over rough terrain. Higher trailer height is 0.75" and should be negligible effect to any loading.
    5. Does anyone know of a good source or dealer in the SC / NE GA / West NC area that can beat the price above for this model.

    I do not own a SxS and do not haul heavy loads, but buying a more powerful tow vehicle in 5 years is a real possibility. Upping the weight above 1,500 lbs would likely necessitate trailer brakes, surge brakes seem like a simple solution.
     
  2. mountain_man

    mountain_man Member

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    I am not familiar with the specific models but I general I would get the trailer that has a 3500 pound axle. A 2000 pound axle will be easy to overload. I know you are only using it for an atv but if a neighbor borrows it then there is a good chance it will come back with a bent axle. I have seen this exact scenario. Still a chance with a 3500 pound axle but a lesser chance. Also 15 inch tires usually have a higher speed rating. A 12 usually has a 65 mph speed rating and the 15 are usually a good bit higher about 75 to 80. So if you ever want to take it on the highway just remember that. And if you have a flat a 15 inch will usually be easier to find in stock at a tire shop especially out in the country.

    Edit to add.
    I see you may be getting a larger vehicle at some point and upping your payload. If so get the bigger trailer. And you mentioned adding brakes if so get a 3500 pound axle. Locally nobody stocks a brake set up for a axle less than 3500. I added electric brakes to my box trailer that had a 3500 pound axle. It isn't hard to do, just a couple hours and that included rewiring the trailer for the 7 pin plug required for brakes. Adding a brake controller is easy in most newer vehicles, generally just plug a jumper harness from the brake controller into the factory wiring. I used a prodigy p3 controller
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2020
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  3. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    I will add a couple of thoughts to your criteria:
    If you keep your loads below say 2500lbs, you wont need brakes as long as you drive accordingly.
    Expanded metal floor wont rot like wood if it is stored outdoors.
    Tilt trailers dont require rattling ramps.
    Full ramp/tailgate trailers are pretty nice.
    I have a 5x10 tilt. I would not go smaller than that for an atv and two deer, plus some gear, coolers etc.
    Consider a 6x10 side load(no rails) . Two atvs fit crossways.
    Just dont buy a dinky cheap trailer with bitty tires.
    I have all sorts of trucks and trailers, but I like my 5x10 trlr because its low and easy to load/unload.
     
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  4. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

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    For about $800 more I got a Carry-On 5.5X10 foot aluminum trailer that weighs 640 pounds. It came with the A-frame tongue, 15" wheels/tires and a jack. It pulls like a dream behind my compact SUVs, even when loaded with the Road King. I waited till they went on sale at Tractor Supply and never regretted it.
     
  5. Barr

    Barr Member

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    Mesh floors sound attractive but everyone I have seen sags because they use flat expanded mesh flooring. ATV (Honda Rancher) smaller than mine at the dealership was sagging in the floor slightly, not likely to fail in a few uses but will sag over a 5 year life.

    You are correct about storing treated wood outside, it will rot over 5-10 years. I would not view it any different than an outside deck though.

    Do you have any photos of an ATV on a 5x10 trailer you would be willing to share? Curious to see what a full weekend loadout would look like.
     
  6. Barr

    Barr Member

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    I looked at the TSC website but do not see an aluminum trailer option. I see it on the Carry-On website for a 6x10 that weighs 700 lbs. Certainly an excellent engineered solution. 1/3 the weight, 1/3 the strength, but double the cost. No corrosion or paint though! Secondary question, good ways to secure trailers? Thinking ball lock and a padlock through the hasp.

    https://www.lowes.com/pd/Reese-Towpower-Tow-and-Store-Anti-Theft-Lock-Kit/3323566
     
  7. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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  8. Barr

    Barr Member

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  9. mountain_man

    mountain_man Member

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    That is a nice trailer. If that is the one you want just remember you don't have to load a trailer to its full capacity. So if you feel you need that size just watch your overall weight and don't overload your tow vehicle. I understand it's a balancing act right now trying to figure out what you need now vs what you want later. What kind of suv are you using to pull with.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2020
  10. Rembrandt

    Rembrandt Member

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    If the expanded metal floor sags, it's because it lacks properly spaced supports underneath. Defiantly spend the extra and go with aluminum.

    If using for a mower....measure the outside deck width first. My small trailer is 60" wide, mower deck is 60".....but it doesn't fit on the trailer, mower decks are wider than their advertised cut.
     
  11. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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    Good advice and your signature line is even better.
     
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  12. Barr

    Barr Member

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    Subaru Outback
     
  13. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    In over 7000 pictures, nothing useful of the little trailer.

    Consider an enclosed trailer too. Lockable, dry, weatherproof. Could double as a camper, or temporary storage at home.
     
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  14. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

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  15. Kingcreek

    Kingcreek Member

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    I bought a Doolittle trailer and I love it. Well made and good value. 2900 pound capacity (because 3000+ is a different license class): the rear ramp can be locked vertical or folded flat or removed.
    A tongue and 3500 pound axle and 15” wheels are significantly better. Brakes not needed. Pulls like a dream behind my Jeep Wrangler.
    Aluminum trailer would be ideal for you but cost goes way up.
    Costco has had some nice smaller trailers at a very attractive prices from time to time.
     
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  16. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    A ball hitch on the ATV would pull the little aluminum trailer for yard work or deer recovery.
     
  17. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    A little over your budget, and bigger than you need. But you never know when you might NEED something bigger later. Empty trailer weight is 995. GVWR is 2995, so 2000 lbs payload. With just one ATV on there you'll just about meet your weight goals. No brakes, and none needed in most places.

    https://www.samsclub.com/p/karavan-trailer/prod20301097?_br_psugg_q=trailer

    I have one of these. It is very versatile. All 4 sides fold down for loading, or can be completely removed for a flat bed. I haul 2 ATV's on mine. A Honda Rancher goes on sideways in the front and a Foreman on the back.

    IMG_1500 (1).JPG
     
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  18. ericuda

    ericuda Member

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    Not sure there but in Kansas lighter trailers do not need tagged.
     
  19. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    I went to a trailer dealer and he had a couple that he had for quite awhile. He gave me a 15% discount and I bought an extruded steel 8x16' with a tailgate ramp and an 8x20' tandem with a treated wood floor to haul my tractor. The 8x16 was less than Tractor Supply's 8x12.
     
  20. Barr

    Barr Member

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    In SC we do not have to tag trailers under 3,000 lbs empty weight. If going out of state you do have to tag them is my understanding. Trailer lights are not required if vehicle brake lights can be seen during daytime in towing configuration.
     
  21. Barr

    Barr Member

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    Last question, do you need trailer brakes with a 3,500 lb SUV and a 1,500 lb trailer loaded? I plan to tow at 60 mph in moderate foothills with a manual transmission. Manual says 1,000 lbs without brakes, other folks with this car have pushed 1,500-1,800 lbs without brakes. Brake controllers and trailer brakes would be nice but add $600 to project.

    Options are:
    1. Drive as is but be methodical how I drive.
    2. Install brakes and brake controller.
    3. Install hydraulic surge brakes.
    4. Buy 2k lb axle version of this trailer with 12-13" tires that cuts curb weight by 300+ lbs. Would still be at 1,100 lbs.

    I am thinking of trying as-is with heavier trailer, they do have a return policy if trailer has not been abused etc.
     
  22. Kingcreek

    Kingcreek Member

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    Using the manual tranny and existing vehicle brakes should be ok
     
  23. 12Bravo20

    12Bravo20 Member

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    I have that exact trailer. I bought mine at Orsheln Farm and Home a few years ago. I waited until it was on sale and then bought on Tuesday so I could use my Vet discount. I have pulled it with a 2002 Jeep Liberty with 3.7L V6, 2009 Dodge Durango with 5.7L Hemi, and my 2016 Jeep Cherokee with 3.2L V6. The heaviest load that I carry is either my Honda Pioneer 500 UTV or my Harley Tri-Glide trike. I don't haul either very often though. I live in Md Missouri where the hills aren't too bad (compared to southern Missouri). If I had to do it over, I would have opted for the aluminum trailer and brakes. My total trailer weight with my heavy loads are around 1800 lbs. Brakes aren't needed but would be nice. I do take a hit on fuel mileage but otherwise the Cherokee pulls the trailer just fine.

    The main thing with any trailer is to keep the tires properly inflated and makes sure that the axle bearings are properly tightened (not too tight or too loose) and greased with a good quality grease. When ever I get a new trailer, I always pull the axles and repack the bearings and properly tighten them. It doesn't matter if it's a cheap Harbor Freight trailer or more expensive trailer.
     
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  24. rdnktrkr

    rdnktrkr Member

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    I don't know if I would want an enclosed trailer behind a lightweight vehicle, I pull a 8x16 v nose and a 1/2 ton knows its back there, I have a 4x8 for my Polaris that works great getting to our hunting land and then we use it behind the Polaris, any bigger and some trails couldn't be traveled, we have used it to retrieve broken down 4 wheelers and downed deer, one thing I like about my 16' and 20' trailers is the ramp lays flat when it is empty to make towing easier and better gas milage.
     
  25. WestKentucky

    WestKentucky Member

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    There’s no reason not to get a straight tongue realistically. The nice part of a A frame tongue though is that the storage boxes that sit in the A frame are really stinkin handy and it adds some tongue weight for when the trailer is empty. You could add small cheap braces to the tongue for that purpose if you buy a straight tongue. The tongue storage box is worth it’s weight in gold on a tiny trailer, because you never have room for what you think you need, and in this case you will never have to worry about gas cans being liberated between home and deer camp leaving you stranded.

    no matter what Trailer you get though, but a cheap hydraulic jack ($59 at harbor freight) and a spare tire because you will need them. I also would advise to get a larger tire size when feasible because a hung trailer is a pain in the butt to clear, taller tires give more clearance to hopefully avoid such.
     
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