View Full Version : Spin-Off: Scrambling on Corners in Brenderup

Aug. 14, 2011, 10:37 PM
I was reading the other thread where 2tempe posted that she had to get rid of her Brenderup because her horse was scrambling on corners. I'm having the same issue with one of mine, and wonder if others are as well.

My new horse scrambled several times on his first short trip- all on corners. I slowed way down (<5 mph on any turn), with hazards on, and it happened once on our second trip and once on our third trip, even when I was barely moving around a corner and had a pile of cars behind me because I was going so slow.

He is a well traveled upper level dressage horse, has flown without issue, etc. so this was completely unexpected.

I'm hoping to get some info...

Has anyone else experienced this?
Anyone have any theories on what is causing it?
Anyone successfully modified the trailer to end the issue?
If not, I'm wondering if there is any commonality in what sorts of trailers these horses like? I know mine hauls in a big-rig, and I was told he hauled find in a 2-horse, but have no information on what sort.


Lisa Preston
Aug. 14, 2011, 10:45 PM
Huh. Have a Brenderup and never had a negative eperience. Their smooth towing (no buffetting when an on-coming semi passes) is their claim to fame. Every horse could have a scrable in any trailer--is it neessarily your set up or could it be cincidence?

Aug. 14, 2011, 10:52 PM
Are you waiting till the trailer straightens out before you accelerate after the turn?

Aug. 14, 2011, 11:06 PM
I'll expand...I have towed a number of horses in my B-up, and NEVER had a problem. Older horses, younger horses. All were fine and self-loaded. This mare was fine the first few times; then it started, I dont really know why. But I mean I CRAWLED around corners and into the straight away, didn't help.

The ONLY theory I could come up with is: it started on the way to an area show (where we had been before) but the road there is very very curvy. Maybe that was unsettling. But the next time I trailered her, different direction, not a sound on the straight aways or some curves, only the corners. The mare is not a baby -9 yr old - and she is otherwise unflappable. All I knew was when she knocked the divider loose, that was just too scary for me. (though she was fine otherwise, and did not try to fly off the trailer).

I know a couple other people who have B-ups, and they've not had a problem either.

Aug. 14, 2011, 11:13 PM
Yeah, that sounds more like the mare scared herself on the 'curvy' ride and now is doing it on her own.

Reinforce the bolts holding the divider down so she can't knock it loose?

Aug. 14, 2011, 11:24 PM
A couple more things - I pushed submit too soon:yes:
Once this started, it was on every corner; some not bad, some sounded pretty bad. I couldn't think of any way to modify the trailer, as she clearly felt the need to lean - thus the bow in the divider. The first ride in the slant load was in one that belonged to a friend, and the difference, at least for my horse, was amazing. I was never a big fan of slants, especially for bigger horses. This mare is not huge or long in the body, so I didn't have much to worry about there. I was sorry to see the B go, as I got 9 years of good use out of it.

By the way, my divider had just a bottom peg that sat in a hole in the trailer floor; it was well attached to the chest bar, but she popped that sucker right out of the bottom...Twice.

Aug. 14, 2011, 11:45 PM
Interesting... I definitely was not driving too quickly or accelerating before the trailer was straight on the last two drives. I was going so painfully slow that other horse trailers were backing up behind me. It's possible I wasn't being careful enough for his liking on the first ride- but not since.

I think mine is also leaning in because there are scratches on the outside wall from his shoes, but nothing on the divider.

All of the scrambles seem very scary. If I'm going slow enough it doesn't happen- but I am honestly going so slow it feels dangerous- i.e. 15 mph on a 35 mph road with gentle curves. Even when it doesn't happen, he looks sweaty and agitated.

Aug. 15, 2011, 12:06 AM
This is obvious - you travel the horse on the driver's side of the trailer, right?
Some horses cannot travel on the left hand side, ever. If she travels alone mostly, you could perhaps take out the divider and she could angle haul if she wants. If she travels with a partner, the heavier horse travels on the left. I have had a bad experience with these trailers, but it was not my trailer.

Aug. 15, 2011, 11:45 AM
I work with problem horses for a living and specialize in trailer loading issues.....when people call me with trailering issues (one time appointments vs regular training), I am never suprised to hear that they have a brenderup. About a third of my trailer loading calls have been with brenderups over the 8 years I have been doing this professionally.....a pretty high percentage considering how many brands of trailers are out there. I don't know what it is about them that horses don't like, however, the general pattern that I see is a large horse and a small towing vehicle.

Aug. 15, 2011, 12:49 PM
Can the center divider be removed? Years ago I did this in a tagalong, to the great relief of a scrambler!

Aug. 15, 2011, 12:58 PM
Doesn't the divider add stability in the Brednerup (i.e. you are supposed to have one)? Could be wrong...

Aug. 15, 2011, 01:24 PM
Most horses like to be able spread their legs to shift balance. the center board prevents them from shifting to a wider stance.

Aug. 15, 2011, 02:48 PM
The center divider can be removed, but I would need to order a one-piece butt bar from the company since it can't operate without one. I have no problem doing that, but I wonder how much it will really help since he will still have to be tied so he doesn't try to climb under the chest bar?

I'm currently scrambling to find him a spot on a big rig for this weekends show so he doesn't have to deal with the set-up that isn't working at the moment.

Aug. 15, 2011, 03:01 PM
You need the butt bars in place, but my Brenderup came with 2 sets of butt bars: one set has both of the same size so the trailer is divided in 2 equal parts, and the second set is a longer and a shorter butt bar so it creates a wider space for one horse only, but still gives stability to the trailer.

My divider is a thick plastic with the metal frame on top, so horses can spread their legs all they want, assuming they are not sharing the ride with another horse and stepping on the other horses' feet.

I've taken several friends' horses besides my own, and never had any problem with horses loosing balance or scrambling. No problem loading them either.

Different people, different experiences.

Aug. 15, 2011, 03:36 PM
Wow, I've had my Brenderup 11 years and never had an issue. I've trailered cross country, up and down the east coast, over mountains, with my horses, new horses and friends horses. Never had a horse scramble.

My divider is the heavy plastic/rubber that goes 2/3's down to the floor. The bottom is left open as some horses like to spread their legs more than others.

Have you tried shipping your horse on the right-hand-side like suggested above?
Do you use any shavings? I like to use just a hand ful of clean shavings to absorb any wetness.
And absolutely use the butt bars, they help stabilize the divider.

I've had horses refuse to load in other trailers, scramble in slants and come running out of friends metal 2-horse trailers, but Never a problem with the B-Up.

Aug. 15, 2011, 04:14 PM
If you were travelling in a port-a-potty on wheels I'm sure you too would scramble....TO GET OUT!!!

Aug. 15, 2011, 06:22 PM
Thanks for the insight all! I've found him a ride on a big rig for this weekend, and next week I intend to empty the trailer out and list it for sale.

I'm hoping to borrow a stock and a slant in the next few weeks and see what he likes better. If all else fails, Judge Manning is going to get a lot of business next year.

Aug. 15, 2011, 10:53 PM
Not very surprising -- a good friend had one and unsuprisingly, her mare hated it, my horse hated it, and every other horse we put in hated it. They couldn't see out of the dang fiberglass easter egg and spent the whole time with their heads craning around trying to see and get their bearings. It was tight and narrow and they were always much relieved and dead calm once they stepped into my steel stockside trailer. I think selling yours is the best thing you can do with one!

Aug. 17, 2011, 12:28 AM
Wow, which B-up trailer does not have windows the horses can see out from? Every model I've seen has windows by the horses' heads. I know my horses always look out the window in my B-up. I guess all the Europeans horses must be blind, otherwise they'd be craning their heads trying to look out their "easter eggs", huh?:confused:

Tiffani B
Aug. 17, 2011, 12:51 AM
I had a scrambler (not in a Brenderup) and I found he was most comfortable if I let him travel completely loose. He would lean on the driver's side whenever I'd turn right and try to climb the wall, and if he was on the passenger side he'd completely lose it and lay down since he had no wall to climb. He bent my divider leaning so hard on it. It was pretty scary, not to mention expensive to repair the damage he did to my trailer. Loose, he'd ride sideways or backwards and was quiet as a mouse.

I learned after I got him that he had been in a trailer accident before I bought him, and we always had to make sure he had an extra large stall for hauling if he couldn't be completely loose.

Horses are often claustrophobic, and one small incident can magnify in their mind very quickly. They have no logic button, so one hard turn that they weren't prepared for becomes An Awful Event every time. Maybe try riding in back with the horse (if you can do it safely) and observe what is happening. I rode with him and could immediately see what was going on, and it was a quick fix.

Aug. 17, 2011, 01:02 AM
I don't think my old horse could see out the window very well, but I've never thought that was important. Windows are just places stuff can blow in so it's not like I'd have ones at eye level open anyway. (And he had a panic tie on him anyway so he couldn't lift his head that high.)

Aug. 17, 2011, 12:30 PM
Yes, windows and stock trailers allow things to blow in and potentially into horses' eyes. That's why my horses always travel with fly masks. Pony Club training.

Aug. 17, 2011, 12:52 PM
joiedevie, have you tried the horse in another trailer since the scrambling started? Some horses start scrambling when they develop arthritis or other problems in their hind end (stifle, hock etc.). Have heard plenty of such stories with all trailer brands.

If it's only in the Brenderup, then I don't know what to tell you. Horses are fickle--I've met horses who hate stock trailers, 2-horse straight loads, 4-horse head to heads, you name it, so it wouldn't be absurd to find a horse who hated the Brenderup design.

jumpymeister, may I gently suggest that the frequency of Brenderup loading issues has A LOT to do with the fact that it's a popular trailer brand with novice horse owners and novice haulers. Inexperienced loaders tend to have loading problems of their own creation, but they like to blame the trailer.

Aug. 17, 2011, 12:53 PM
Not very surprising -- a good friend had one and unsuprisingly, her mare hated it, my horse hated it, and every other horse we put in hated it. They couldn't see out of the dang fiberglass easter egg and spent the whole time with their heads craning around trying to see and get their bearings. It was tight and narrow and they were always much relieved and dead calm once they stepped into my steel stockside trailer. I think selling yours is the best thing you can do with one!

I love this....and I hate those tall narrow ramps.

Having driven behind them in Ireland many times, I personally find they are to high off the ground, top heavy, narrow and look ready to tip over. When a customer wanted to take a horse for a pre purchase lesson in her "B" I insited I ship MY horse in his lovely Hawke until she purchased him...then she could shoe horn him into the porta-loo

Aug. 17, 2011, 03:58 PM
Actually they're much steadier when you're haulilng than most trailers (and WAY safer than bumper-pulls.) Doesn't actually feel like you're hauling much of anything. Dad prefers it to the open utility trailer by miles (he once used the B'up to haul all my brother's stuff to college in Florida!)

Indestructible, too. The manufacturer's video of the guy whaling on it with a sledgehammer is no joke.

Aug. 17, 2011, 04:08 PM
I don't get how anyone can say they are "WAY" safer -- I mean to each their own, but it's still a bumper pull trailer. It does not have magical accident avoidance or super non-flipping skills, especially if you are putting it behind something like a RAV4. Some people have had good experiences and some people have had terrible experiences, but I would not say they are WAY anything, except maybe WAY expensive or WAY small.

Aug. 17, 2011, 06:12 PM
What Tiffany said - try to work with the horse to help her out.

Aug. 18, 2011, 10:37 PM
I have a Brenderup Royal TC that I haul with a Rav4!!! I have never had a problem hauling in it...I did have a problem getting a horse we bought into it. Sarge was not a fan at first and as someone said "it was new to trailering horses" more than Sarge hating the trailer. I took him to the person who originally trained/owned him for 3 years. He had Sarge in the trailer in 5 minutes with not problems as all. Sarge will load up in the B'up or any trailer we ask him to.

My friend's TW LOVES to go in the B'up. When we ride together, Rogue would head for the B'up whether he came in it or in another trailer!!! I haven't ever had the horses scramble in the trailer but I did have my horse bracing against it when hubby was driving what I thought was too fast on a curvy road. He was doing about 50 mph. My horse scratched the side of his hock on a rounded screw and his leg was bleeding. Hubby got a LOUD CRANKY piece of my mind in my cousin's front pasture. Never happened again.

As for it being flimsy...no...not at all. Flexible...yes. Sarge spends his entire ride looking out the windows - I have followed my husband hauling the trailer with his Tundra and watched Sarge gandering out the windows.

The mats in the trailer are EXTREMELY heavy and do not shift around. I pulled them out of the trailer Monday to clean it and OMG they are not for the faint of heart to drag out!

Not every trailer is going to be the favorite of every horse but I have hauled both of my horses and several friend's horse's without the least bit of trouble. It is easy to maneuver and I love it.

Aug. 18, 2011, 11:08 PM
alfafagirl, it seems that most of us who own B-ups and have had years of experience with them love these trailers, and those who call them easter eggs and swear they are dangerous, unstable, death traps are people who have had very limited if any experience hauling horses in B-ups.

I hauled my 2 horses today and they promptly walked into the trailer. One loves to eat and as soon as he loads his head is stuffed into his hay net. By the time we got to our destination, he was still happily munching and oblivious to the fact I needed him to unload. The second horse never eats in a trailer, my B-up or any other trailer I've put him in. But he does love to look out the window the entire time (without even having to crane his head, imagine that! I can see his head in the window from my rearview mirror). Both stabilize themselves by widening their hind legs stance. I drive at posted speed limits in straight roads and very gradually slow down before I get to a curve, take turns very slowly, then gradually accelerate again to posted speed limits. Once in a while I've had to break suddenly due to idiots cutting in front of me or a stop light turning red, but judging from their reaction loading and how relaxed they are at the end of the trip, I don't think they've had negative experiences in my B-up.

I don't care what others say, I love how easily my minivan hauls it and love to save money on gas!

Aug. 19, 2011, 12:12 AM
CLM08 - I think you are absolutely correct. When I researched buying a trailer I dug though every thread I could find on every forum I could find! I noticed that those who actually OWNED a Brenderup loved it...the negative comments came from those who didn't own one.

I also noticed when I bought my trailer it was pretty much impossible to buy a used one. The few that were on the market were older and were priced pretty darn high - they held their value! I am only sorry I didn't go ahead and get the Baron!!

I also had a hard time finding any information on accidents in Brenderups. I found two and that is it. I also found very few incidents of people buying them and not liking them. A few horses didn't care for them but as I said, not every horse is going to like every trailer! If we hadn't been able to get Sarge in the trailer he would have been sold - not the Brenderup. (LOL I adore this horse now....he isn't going anywhere - even if he decided now he didn't like the Bup!) My horses load up quickly and stand quietly while I put the butt bar up. When I drop the butt bar to unload I often have to go back Biscuit out! He is perfectly comfortable where he is!

Aug. 19, 2011, 12:35 AM
CLM08 - I think you are absolutely correct. When I researched buying a trailer I dug though every thread I could find on every forum I could find! I noticed that those who actually OWNED a Brenderup loved it...the negative comments came from those who didn't own one.

I've said before on these threads, my dad is a retired engineer with thirty years at Ford, he's REALLY picky about anything vehicle-related and also is never one to rush to buy new technology. Back when B'ups were new over here, this is the trailer he settled on to buy as the best for him as the driver and easiest for our horse at the time (who was a problem loader.) We still have the trailer and now I have a horse again he's looking at new tires. When I've asked him about hauling it, he says no sway, it stops easy, about the only thing he'd change would be maybe brakes, but it works fine as-is.

As for durable, it's been parked under a lean-to for going on six years. I went in looking for something in the tack trunk stuck in there and it's in perfect shape--only the tires need to go. Plus it survived fussy loader and cranky shippers who would kick their way to the fairgrounds and back when he hauled horses from our 4-H club. I've listened to a crabby mare go "thump thump thump" for twenty miles and there's not a scratch on it.

Aug. 19, 2011, 02:28 AM
wow wee Danceronice - can you post a picture of it? I'd love to see it.

Another reason I bought my Brenderup is they seem to last forever. My cousin, Archie, tells me it is butt ugly to which I tell him he is full of bull poopie. He is always telling me I should have bought a "regular" trailer for $4000 and a used pickup truck. I told him that I would have spent up to $20,000 on a truck even a used one, and say $4k on a small steel trailer. I probably could have spent total of $24K. I would have had to carry insurance on another vehicle as I needed the RAV in my outside sales job with Sherwin Williams plus I am a wedding cake designer and use the RAV to deliver wedding cakes. So I spent right at $13,500+ for my Brenderup so I figure I saved $10K by buying a Brenderup that I could haul with my current vehicle - not to mention having to maintain another vehicle and the insurance!

Arrows Endure
Aug. 19, 2011, 10:28 PM
A friend of mine had a horse that scrambled on the turns. It seems his stifle was bothering him, and he was unable to brace propertly with a solid divider. If she took out the divider, he was fine. Once she got the stifle injected and it felt better, he quit scrambling.

Barring that, if you decide to get rid of your Brenderup, let me know. :)

Aug. 19, 2011, 10:47 PM
I had a Brenderup Royal for years. I hauled everything from TBs to friesians to ponies in it. I never had a problem with any of them scrambling around on corners or otherwise. It was a wonderful trailer!

Please don't take this the wrong way, but how are you taking corners when you drive? I try to do almost all my braking *before* we get into the arc of the turn. I want the turn to be gentle, so he's not dealing with change of speed & change of direction at the same time. A wise person once told me to drive as if a glass of water is in my cupholder, almost completely full. If the water is sloshing out, I am changing speed/direction too quickly.

Is the horse a really nervous type, the kind that might scrabble around in any trailer? Does he come off the trailer sweaty? Some horses get so worked up they forget to focus on balancing. If so, can you work on counter-conditioning so he relaxes and calmly stands on the trailer?

And what are his back feet standing on? My old B'up had really nice rubber mats. But I could see where, after a longer ride with a particularly poopy horse, the back feet might have a little more trouble getting a grip. Add in shavings that a peeing horse soaks, and it might come down to a traction issue. Does he do it on really short rides in a totally clean trailer? Can you play around with bedding type or no bedding at all to see what helps?

Aug. 24, 2011, 10:05 PM
My horse scratched the side of his hock on a rounded screw and his leg was bleeding.
My gelding can't ride on the right side of my Royal without bloodying his leg on the doggone screws! My mare has no problem with them!
Gelding has been scrambling, I've been taking 90 degree turns at a crawl to prevent it. He just had his hocks done so maybe I'll have to test going a bit faster on turns to see if that was his problem.

Aug. 25, 2011, 01:39 AM
jumpymeister, may I gently suggest that the frequency of Brenderup loading issues has A LOT to do with the fact that it's a popular trailer brand with novice horse owners and novice haulers. Inexperienced loaders tend to have loading problems of their own creation, but they like to blame the trailer.

Excellent point :-) Sometimes I forget how many novices/beginners I work with ;-)

Aug. 28, 2011, 11:10 AM
When I had a Brenderup, it came with a clear divider that went nearly down to the floor. I trimmed it so the horses could get a better footing if needed. I know someone else posted about the length of their plastic divider, but if you haven't trimmed yours and it's long, I'd suggest you trim it.

I loved my Brenderup, but most horses didn't. Now that I work with a Kingston, I find it much easier to teach the problem loaders to get in.

Aug. 28, 2011, 02:18 PM
Hey all. Thanks for the lively discussion. You don't have to convince me that it is a wonderful trailer... I love the interior, I love hauling it, and all the other horses I've had in it love it as well. I also love having the full size tack room to open up after we get to shows. However, this horse is unhappy.

To answer a few questions- no he's not the nervous type. He is a very experienced traveler- flies well, hauls NY to FL easily (I could show him an hour after the ride if I wanted to), not the type I ever worry about. Trailer is usually deeply bedded in shavings, although I did try it naked. Without shavings was worse- but it happened both ways. Yes- he did do it pulling out of the driveway in a totally clean, bedded trailer.

As to driving habits, I drive too slow on turns- literally. I put my hazards on because I'm going unreasonably slow with him in there- 5-7 mph on any sort of turn.

I did think about the hocks/stifles issue- but he gets jogged for the vet once a month like clockwork- so we're pretty on top of issues. He has had hocks and one stifle done- but behavior in the trailer was no different before or after (wasn't done for that reason).

Since I posted this thread a few weeks ago, he's been in two different trailers, and been happy as a clam in both- no sweating, no nervousness, no scrambling, not even a stomp. He even returned to eating hay on the trailer. On the first ride, I followed behind with the windows down. The driver took the on-ramp at 27 mph. He was fine. I took that on-ramp at 11 and he slipped.

Like I said, I love the trailer, and the other horses love the trailer, but I owe it to this horse to get him something that makes him happy, and all my investigation points to it being the trailer and not him. For regionals and our last two shows of the year he'll ship professionally. That will give me the fall to hopefully sell the B'Up :( and find him something he likes. I so wish I could afford to keep it and get something for him, but I can't.

Aug. 28, 2011, 04:13 PM
I have had a Brenderup Baron TC for 12 years now, and have never had a problem hauling any size horse in it.

Re screws in the side wall - I put a little square of duct tape over each one and then run a length of duct tape from the ramp to the escape door covering the squares as I go. I replace it each year.

Re top heavy? - Not at all, Brenderups are bottom heavy- steel bottom, composition middle, fiberglass top.

Re windows - mine has a tinted window all the way across the front. The horses can see out just fine.

Re claustraphobia - between the white interior, see-through heavy plastic stall divider and the higher entrance, the whole thing looks bigger than it is.

Re not using the divider and butt bars - Brenderup sells a divider that goes from one side to the other. You can remove the stall divider and use it (with the full butt bar) like a loose box.

Re scrambling - the heavy plastic stall divider is loose the last couple inches so that a horse can take a very wide stance.

I think that they are the best & safest trailer available as a bumper pull.