Purchasing a Trailer, I have questions.

Discussion in 'Experienced Truckers' Advice' started by LondRanger, Sep 21, 2020.

  1. LondRanger

    LondRanger Road Train Member

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    I’m in the market to purchase a dry van, but I want it to be food grade.

    so what makes a good grade trailer? Aluminum walls? Aluminum floor?
    I’m looking at 2001-2009 years.

    Also want to ask if I want to haul loads that require 102” width which manufacturer would be the best one?

    thanks.
     
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  3. Rideandrepair

    Rideandrepair Road Train Member

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    Best to avoid wood on walls, and fiberglass roof. Maybe vented, for certain loads, those can always be added easily. Generally just a clean Trailer, no leaks, no soft spots on floor. Good door seals. What brand? I prefer Wabash, Stoughton. I have an 08 Trailmobile, They’re out of Bussiness now, parts are pretty standard though. it’s very similar to a Wabash. Biggest challenge will be finding one in good condition. Floors rot, side rails and rivets corrode, Best to spend more and buy newer, if you can. The abs system should be considered. Some have 2 sensors, some have 4, 1 on each wheel. That equals Slightly higher parts costs, and complicated repairs. Avoid Vantraax air ride systems. They’re problematic. Eats up tires.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2020
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  4. Dino soar

    Dino soar Road Train Member

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    Definitely swing door 102 in.

    I like the Wabash duraplate. That is food grade.

    You have to watch with older trailers that the floor is good and there's no sag on the beams across. And that they have no leaks.

    And for any trailer you need to know how to check the cams brakes drums and the suspension bushings.

    That can cost you some money if you need to replace all of that.
     
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  5. Rideandrepair

    Rideandrepair Road Train Member

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    A friend of mine, started out changing shoes, ended up with $2000 worth of parts, chambers, seals, drums, slacks, s cam bushings,re packed bearings, how much labor would they have charged? I’m guessing $2000 or more? Meanwhile he bought a brand new one for $32k. Like Me, he’s learned the hard way.
     
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  6. LondRanger

    LondRanger Road Train Member

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    I was thinking of a Wabash, Utility, or GD.

    I only need the trailer for 2 years at most, and I don’t want to go all in on a new trailer for the 2 years I’ll work as a trucker.

    my main question I guess is are wood floors considered to be food grade if the side panels are aluminum?
     
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  7. Dino soar

    Dino soar Road Train Member

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    I don't know what they call them for another trailer if they call it a plate trailer or what they call it but you have to look at what a Wabash duraplate looks like.

    My trailer has wooden floors and I've hauled food grade loads.

    In fact my trailer is a 2002 and one load that I did they told me the guy before me got rejected because of his trailer

    It made me a little nervous but I went right in with no problems. Wood floor is okay but you have to have no holes and make sure there's no cracks or anything that it's going to deteriorate shortly. And no leaks.

    You just don't want plywood sides or a translucent roof as @Rideandrepair said.

    The next one I buy though I would buy a later model trailer maybe 10 years old or less.

    For what it's worth I think trailers hold their value pretty well so if you bought something in pretty good shape you would probably do okay if you cashed out in a couple years.
     
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  8. danny23tx

    danny23tx Road Train Member

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    Wabash with Aluminum roof , no wood panels except you can have one on the front wall and have etrack . Biggest issue with used trailers I found were worn out suspension parts ( Bushings are the big one ) and Drums and breaks . I rented and own a few trailers and the biggest issues were wearing out tires from bad suspenion parts . Get one that has either just recently had the suspension redone and breaks and drums freshly done .
     
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  9. Rideandrepair

    Rideandrepair Road Train Member

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    Yes, they’re all wood floor
     
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