How can I get more weight on my truck?

Discussion in 'Flatbed Trucking Forum' started by Bdog, Dec 30, 2017.

  1. Bdog

    Bdog Heavy Load Member

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    I have a Fontaine steel 53’ step deck with a fixed spread. Today I hauled a load of boards made from telephone poles that was about as uniform as you could get from the very front edge of the upper deck to the tail end of the trailer. When I say uniform I don’t mean level on top I mean the same height stacked on the upper deck as on the lower deck. I ran it across the scales full of fuel and got steer 10,400, drive 26,920, trailer 37,860. Gross was 75,180. I know I can have up to 40k on the spread but with my steer and drive so low I couldn’t reach 80k without going over the 40 unless I really loaded the front heavy.

    My fifth wheel is a far forward as it can go. I have 1” clearance between mud flap hanger/tail light bar and the trailer frame.

    I can’t adjust the spread location so I realize it is what it is but is this normal for a uniform load to be so heavy on the trailer end relative to the truck?
     
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  2. x1Heavy

    x1Heavy Road Train Member

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    Theoratically as long your load is no higher than 13.4 or so anywhere on the entire rig you will get what you get.

    I think what you are running into is the material your load is made of. For example. If you loaded that full of Balsa Wood which are used in models etc it's going to be very light and you will stack it as high as you can go and it will still be light. You will cube out before you weight out.

    Now if you stacked say Oak on there, you will get to 80K pretty fast before you managed to volume out.

    You have a steel trailer. You would be able to load more freight with a aluminum one but considering the load you have on... 75K something gross is not that bad. It's a nice weight. A little heavy on the spread back there. But routine.

    Im betting those spreads are helping you nicely. I don't think you can reverse the pattern of that load on that trailer and still be able to scale less than 34K on your drives. So it's good.
     
  3. johndeere4020

    johndeere4020 Road Train Member

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    Is your spread at the rear or do you have deck behind the axles?
     
  4. special-k

    special-k Road Train Member

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    How high is your 5th wheel? In a perfect world the bottom frame rail of your trailer should be parallel to the ground. If it has a belly in the frame measure from the frame just in front of the suspension mounts where they are welded to the frame. Those heights should be close to the same. Measure that on both axles.
     
  5. kylefitzy

    kylefitzy Heavy Load Member

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    What he said. If your axles are set forward like most new 53' steps you should avoid loading anything heavy behind the spread. It acts like a lever taking weight off of the drives and transferring it to the spread axles.

    I always try to load steps in between the step and the front trailer axle. If I have to go past the front trailer axle something should also be on the top deck. This works with uniform loads.
     
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  6. Bdog

    Bdog Heavy Load Member

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    The axles are at the very back of the trailer except for the 5' dovetail which sticks out past them. The load of boards did extend all the way to the rear of the trailer including the dovetail.
     
  7. Bdog

    Bdog Heavy Load Member

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    Trailer seems pretty level. IMG_3768.JPG
     
  8. special-k

    special-k Road Train Member

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    Yes it looks reasonable for height. How long is the upper deck? I've only pulled stepdecks here and there over the years but l remember not being able to run my 5th wheel where l usually do when pulling a step. I have a long hood Pete also and l run my 5th wheel well ahead of centre. Probably 6" or so. All the trailers l pull usually have 18-24" kingpins so its not an issue with a normal flatbed. It looks like you would rip off your fender brackets doing that. You might have to live with it and just load everything forward a foot or two ahead of centre when possible. On a load of lumber like that you might be out of luck getting it balanced nicely.
     
  9. Ruthless

    Ruthless Road Train Member

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    Put more on the front of the bottom deck right behind the step next time.
     
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  10. Bdog

    Bdog Heavy Load Member

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    Yes I could have done that. If had pipe or something full length I couldn’t though. I guess I was just surprised how it scales being a mostly uniform load.
     
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