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cass1e

Member Since 05 Apr 2008
Offline Last Active Oct 03 2013 12:21 PM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Buying A Trailer For The First Time

04 February 2013 - 03:57 PM

i was doing this two years ago this month myself... there are many things to consider. for instance, i have a trail horse that is claustrophobic. he's done some serious damage to himself in the older, smaller, straight load (with ramp or step up) trailers. i also have show horses (wp/hus) and i needed to be able to haul a good deal of tack for two exhibitors, two horses and supplies for 2+ day shows. some of the basic safety things are brakes, tires, lights, hitch and floor. don't be afraid to ask for maintenance records. is there a spare tire? does the roof leak? if there are rubber mats on the floor, which i strongly recommend - pick them up and pull them out if possible. (new mats are relatively inexpensive and could potentially be hiding a lot of problems.) if the floor is covered in shavings or bedding - ask for a broom (or bring one with you). functioning doors and windows can also be critical. open and shut all the doors and windows and test latches and locks. nonfunctioning windows can be horrible in summer heat... escape doors are pretty standard and necessary for safety, imho. my first trailer was a 1976 thunderbird something or the other (which i bought in 2008). my trail horse said not just no, but oh heck no!!! (he is 15ish hand AQHA so not overly large, albeit slightly chubby. he just does not do well in small confined spaces.) it was a two horse straight load step up bumper pull and it was in perfect condition, had been perfectly maintained, (with the records to prove it) new tires and solid floor. (i knew the original owners.) great deal! unless your horse won't ride in it... sold it a month later for same price i gave for it. after many months of shopping, i wound up buying a new shadow stablemate. bumper pull, three horse step up slant with tack room. all aluminum, "latching" dividers between each of the horses and collapsible wall between the tack room and the horse area - adds a bit of flexibility if you need to haul other things such as atv, hay, etc... the great thing about this trailer is that it has stock slats on the tail side (with option to cover with plexiglass for winter trailering) and nice heavy duty drop down windows at the head. this gives a big roomy feel - perfect for the claustrophobic horse. it isn't a fancy "bnt" kinda trailer, but since i'm not a "bnt" - perfect for what i use it for and within my budget, which is really the most important things to consider. of course you also must consider the tow vehicle, tow capacity and the type of hitch in relation to the trailer weight full of horses and a couple hundred pounds of tack and hay. (most trucks can tow just about every trailer, but stopping safely in a hurry may result in a very unfavorable outcome.) if you aren't mechanically inclined - take someone with you who is. don't be afraid to offend potential sellers. imagine how terrible it would be if your horse was injured or worse. hitch and unhitch. pull it down the road and check the lights, electrical components and brakes yourself. and the best advice... don't get in a hurry. there are some really great used trailers out there. take your time and don't be pressured. good luck and happy hunting!!

psa: totally not an expert on this or any subject concerning horses. the more i'm around them, the more i realize how much i don't know. :smilie: