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ClydesdaleSocks
Apr. 10, 2011, 10:39 AM
I am in the market for my first trailer. I was hoping I could get one used to save me some money but is now almost wondering if I should buy new. I'm going back and forth between buying a new 2011 Hawk BP and now I've found a 2001 Bison Alumasport BP for sale. The Bison is of course, half the price of the new Hawk. The new Hawk will run me about $11,000+ and this Bison is for sale around $5500. So a big gap in price and a lot to consider. I want a good deal, but I don't want to buy a POS that will fall apart within 5 years.

I know Hawks are really good quality but does anyone know about the quality of Bison BP? Some that I've found on other forums said they've had no problems, but it seems more people are saying they fall apart really quickly. Most of the info I've found is on their large GN LQ trailers.

I'm looking for a BP, with a dressing room, walkthrough, Straight load, and at least 7' tall (taller is preferable). I plan to be hauling at least once per month, sometimes even multiple times per month. My hauling radius is probably like 100 miles for shows and around 20 miles for more frequent hauling. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I feel really in the dark when it comes to trailer buying because there doesn't seem like there's a lot of information out there. :(

blaster
Apr. 10, 2011, 10:53 AM
Well, I love buying used.

However, I would consider a higher-end used trailer (eby, 4-star) than a used lower end trailer. I've got a fair amount of travel time in 2000ish bison, and while the utilitarian trailer and has served us well, I am not a fan of it. There are little things that I believe they could have done better. For example, the doors on the inside are a bit rough (not unsafe, just not finished well). The trailer in question just sucked about $2K in refurb bills. Even if you compared a 2000 Hawk and 2000 Bison side by side, you would see the things that make the difference.

Hawks are very good trailer for the money, and a nice mid-range trailer.

Lastly, unless you love maintenance bills or can do it yourself, an 11 year old trailer is getting to the point it will probably start needing a lot of things (floors, wiring, paint, etc) Trailers generally are not made (nor maintained as well) as cars, and have a much shorter lifespan.

ClydesdaleSocks
Apr. 10, 2011, 11:29 AM
Thank you very much! Yeah, it's just the big price tag and makes me go "Hmmm" on the Hawk, haha. I'd love to stay arounfd $7,000-$9,000 but it's not looking like I'll be able to find what I want and in good condition at that price.

Here's that Bison: http://www.horsetrailerworld.com/home/trailerdetail.asp?ID=306785

It looks like it's in good condition and the guy said they haven't used it much, but it worries me because I don't think I could tell unless it was really obviously falling apart (i.e. rotted wood, rust). I was also a little worried when I asked about the flooring and he said it had mats on it so I doubt he's lifted those mats to look at the flooring ever. :eek:

belleellis
Apr. 10, 2011, 11:46 AM
I have the exact same trailer. 2001 Bison ramp load. Second owner. I believe when I did research that Bison no longer makes little trailers. Only GN with living quarters and that is because they sold out to a RV conversion company.
Ours was hardley used prior to me. I got mine for $4200 almost 3 years ago. Go look at it. Check the tires, we replaced all 5 (spare included) as from sitting they had dry rotted. Going to say that was around $700. Also last fall we had to the brakes re-done. Less than $300. We also took it immediately to be serviced as sitting is hard on them. Bearings checked/packed. A couple of lights replaced. Had to WD-40 everything. Replaced the wood on the ramp.
That all said. I got out cash, cash, cash. I would rather have something nice, safe and reliable and paid for then something top of the line with a monthly payment. I guess that is why I drive a Mazda and not a Mercedes. ok that is really b/c I have horses. LOL. Really everything we have had to do I consider maintenance. If it has sat you will probably need to spend some additional money up front. Use that as your bargaining power. "oh the tires have dry rot that will cost me $700 so I need that taken off the price." Also cash is king. You might be surprised what you can really get it for.
We pull with a Ford Excursion (basically a 250) in the Mountains to the beach of NC with 2 horses, 3 dogs, full tack. I drive it around CLT in rush hour. It tows great. I have had a flat on the truck and on the trailer and while it was scary it was never dangerous. We drive ours a lot more than what you are saying. At least 3 or 4 times a month for at least an hour. We have driven it up to 5 hours. Horses load and trailer great in it.
The two things I do HATE on mine, the tie rings are in the back. So get horse out ,tie up, lift ramp. My horses dont care but I can see it being an issue. Also the tag for mine goes on the top door that folds and latchs back for when it is hot. Then the tag is not visible.
If I ever upgrade (unlikely as I buy something and take care of it/keep it until it dies) I do want a 4-Star.

belleellis
Apr. 10, 2011, 11:47 AM
Oh and I noticed this trailer is in Travelers Rest, SC. We picked ours up in Hickory, NC so same geographical region. I bet you can get it for $4500 cash.

merrygoround
Apr. 10, 2011, 02:18 PM
Clydsdale Socks sending you a PM

4cornersfarm
Feb. 14, 2012, 05:56 PM
Considering a 2000 Bison Alumasport, anybody have any further comments? Lady wants $5,000, that seems a bit high. She's looking to trade for a lighter trailer though, and I have a Rice I could trade, but would need to add in some cash. Here's her trailer: http://nh.craigslist.org/grd/2834250389.html

appyoverfences
Feb. 14, 2012, 08:57 PM
4 corners I think you and i are looking at the same trailer !

Heart's Journey
Feb. 15, 2012, 01:58 PM
The big square front will really lower your mileage as its not aerodynamic. What will you be pulling it with?

Bison trailers are serviceable trailers, but not great trailers. I've had friends with a few of them and I would be suspicious about possible rust issues as they don't separate the steel and aluminum walls. 12 year old trailer and in the snow all winter... I would check www.horsetrailerworld.com for comparison on similar Bison trailers for the price

4cornersfarm
Feb. 15, 2012, 09:02 PM
I have a 3/4 ton Suburban with heavy duty everything, the tow package, a class V hitch, weight distributing bars and a sway bar attachment. :winkgrin:

I can tow a steel 4 horse. And have. Mileage, not so good. With the Rice I was getting about the same mileage with the trailer as without. (About 15, maybe 18 with a tail wind.) With the steel 4 horse, between 8 and 10 mpg.

However, thinking we probably need at least a 3 horse and might just go right back to a 4 horse. Except I hate slant loads. Off to start another thread.