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Trailering with Metal Curtains Open

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  • Trailering with Metal Curtains Open

    Looking for Advice: I have a two horse gooseneck trailer with a rear ramp - that goes up halfway - and then the 'metal curtains' above the ramp that close.

    I am looking for feedback on whether it is 'OK' to haul with those two smaller metal curtains (above the ramp) open. The trailer sales rep suggested against it, because dirt, road debris, etc. could blow into the trailer and hit a horse. But when I am hauling in really hot weather I would think it would be better for the horses? Thoughts? Opinions?

  • #2
    I haul with mine open. It is so hot in Houston during the summer. That being said, I only haul locally.

    Comment


    • #3
      I have two half doors on top of my ramp on my 2h gn, is that what you mean by curtains?

      I leave them open probably 99% of the time, unless it is absolutely monsooning, wind, etc, or wicked freezing cold (yes we get that here) but usually it is just too friggin hot to close my horse up in a metal box and roll down the road. Been doing it for 15 years and never had a problem.
      Haven't heard of too much stuff blowing into the back of the trailer but have heard of stuff blowing in through the drop down head windows. I also have a 3h LQ so I leave the head side windows closed while underway and open the ones on the tail side
      "Perhaps the final test of anybody's love of dogs is their willingness to permit them to make a camping ground of the bed" -Henry T. Merwin

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      • #4
        I haul with mine open and will do so for hauls of several hours if the weather is hot. Never had an issue (knock on wood).

        When I bought my trailer (Jamco), I verified with the dealer that I could haul with top doors open, and the answer was "sure". I was asking from a trailer structural point of view, though, not from a potential road debris perspective.

        I would hesitate to trailer with a SIDE top door open (Ie. on a 4 head-to-head gooseneck) because of the potential of a cigarette, or whathave you being blown in, but I've got to think the chances are slim for anything to blow into the trailer via open top doors on the BACK of the trailer.

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        • #5
          I could've sworn there was a thread on here a while back about this subject and I think someone said it's illegal to trailer with your top doors open. Do a search and see what you come up with. I really want to do it but I don't entirely trust DD's pony. I need to get a camera system!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by skyy View Post
            I could've sworn there was a thread on here a while back about this subject and I think someone said it's illegal to trailer with your top doors open. Do a search and see what you come up with. I really want to do it but I don't entirely trust DD's pony. I need to get a camera system!
            That may be the case, but I've driven thousands of miles (from New Hampshire to South Carolina, New Hampshire to Illinois, all over New England) with top doors open, going by multiples of policemen in the process, and never had an issue. YMMV, of course.

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            • #7
              I always close mine... always. My dealer told me they are not structurally designed to stay open while traveling.

              Years ago (back before the curtains were metal - they used to be made of a material that you rolled up to the top when you loaded and unloaded horses) - we had a pony flip out the back... she broke her neck and died right there. My father still remembers that day like it was yesterday (and it's been 30+ years since it happened).

              There was a thread very recently on the same topic - you'll hear lots who leave them open and lots who always close them (like me).
              "When a horse greets you with a nicker & regards you with a large & liquid eye, the question of where you want to be & what you want to do has been answered." CANTER New England

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              • #8
                Originally posted by skyy View Post
                I could've sworn there was a thread on here a while back about this subject and I think someone said it's illegal to trailer with your top doors open. Do a search and see what you come up with. I really want to do it but I don't entirely trust DD's pony. I need to get a camera system!
                To my knowledge it's not illegal to drive with the top doors on the REAR of the trailer open, nor is it illegal to travel with the windows open on the drivers side of the trailer (as in a slant load).

                However, in FL it is illegal (not to mention just plain stupid and unsafe) to allow the horses to stick their heads out while you are driving, as it is illegal for a load to protrude more than 6" from the drivers side of the vehicle or trailer. But people do it all the time. I love writing tickets for it though.
                "Perhaps the final test of anybody's love of dogs is their willingness to permit them to make a camping ground of the bed" -Henry T. Merwin

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                • #9
                  I used to, all the time, but after taking a short ride back there once with them open AND closed, I discovered how unbelievably noisy and windy it is back there with them open. So now my rule is they are closed UNLESS it's beastly, beastly hot or unless I'm going just a few miles at low speeds.
                  Click here before you buy.

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                  • #10
                    I call them Storm Doors, and I haul with them removed

                    Out here in CA, I usually have my Storm Doors REMOVED 95% of the time.

                    The only time they are back on the trailer is during winter, so I don't get rain in the trailer. OR if I'm hauling someone elses' horse and they are "afraid" to have those open.

                    The ramp is tall enough, in back, that the horses aren't going to "jump out"

                    Plus - it's nice and ventilated! My trailer is a stock combo, so it also has the open sides/rails. I do have the plexi-glass that came from the manufacturer, though, to put in front of their faces. I don't like hauling with that part open, too.

                    needless to say - my trailer is alway nice and cool with lots of ventilation.
                    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                    Equine & Pet Portrait Artist
                    www.elainehickman.com
                    **Morgans Do It All**

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I travel with mine open if it is hot. I am guessing that the Trail-ets may not be designed to haul with them open since the license plate is on one of the top doors-complete with a light. If you have the door open then you can't see the license plate. Since the light is on there I am guessing Trail-et designed it that way not that that is where the dealer or previous owner decided to put it there.
                      That being said it is a 2000 and has been hauled many many miles with the doors open including multiple states away.

                      I had an older trailer that I changed out the latch back thingy so that it was safe to do keep them open. That trailer came with a fabric curtain and I had door fashioned for it but didn't like the latch the fabricator put on it. Second best $250 I spent on that trailer.
                      The best was getting rid of the side louvers and putting in real windows. (Hubby did the install so it was cheap)
                      Oh, well, clearly you're not thoroughly indoctrinated to COTH yet, because finger pointing and drawing conclusions are the cornerstones of this great online community. (Tidy Rabbit)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                        I used to, all the time, but after taking a short ride back there once with them open AND closed, I discovered how unbelievably noisy and windy it is back there with them open. So now my rule is they are closed UNLESS it's beastly, beastly hot or unless I'm going just a few miles at low speeds.
                        Oh - I just read this. Really? Is it super noisy/windy? LIke it would bother the horses? I'm always worried about hot friggin hot it is in the trailer.....but now maybe I should re-think. I want what's most comfortable for the horse.

                        My friend hauled us for a horsecamping trip and the inside of her trailer was UNBEARABLY HOT!!! It was terrible!!!! She had a typical big slant-load with just the slide-open little windows with screens. I felt so bad for my horse.....was really glad that mine was so "open"
                        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                        Equine & Pet Portrait Artist
                        www.elainehickman.com
                        **Morgans Do It All**

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I can't imagine it would be any noisier than being passed by a semi. Trailering is a noisy business. I'm a ventilation nazi, I don't even like putting my horse on a non-stock-sided trailer, so I say open everything that opens (with the caveat of course, that the doors are designed so they will safely stay put during travel).
                          Life doesn't have perfect footing.

                          Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
                          We Are Flying Solo

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                          • #14
                            I leave mine closed on my Trail-et. The ramp isn't quite tall enough for me to feel comfortable leaving them open with my big horse in there. (On my old Miley, I had a ramp, a pair of short doors, and then a pair of top storm doors that were usually sitting in the dressing room... But the internal ventilation in that wasn't as good as the Trail-et is.)

                            If I have the top vent and all the sliding windows open, it stays quite pleasant in there, even when it is hot out.

                            But, I trailer almost exclusively on freeways, so we are moving and the air is flowing.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I have a wireless temperature sensor in my trailer and a display in my truck. I have experimented both ways. *At interstate speeds* closing the doors on a hot day results in very little increase in temperature - like 1 or 2 degrees. But moving air has more cooling effect than still air.

                              It amazed me how quickly the temp does start to rise if you stop moving, such as a traffic jam. Also 2 horses versus 1 makes a big difference.

                              So - what I do for summer travel is:
                              non-interstate - top doors open
                              interstate - except extremely hot days (<85) - top doors closed
                              interstate - very hot days - top doors open, fly masks on
                              the horses to protect their eyes from dust
                              (I always haul with shavings on the floor...but that is another
                              discussion)

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I just purchased a brand new Hawk 2-horse bp and what I love about this trailer is it has huge windows all over the trailer. The front windows in the dressing room area open up to allow air flow through the whole interior of the trailer itself. There is a "schoolbus" type window in the dressing room that opens up into the trailer part, so the air flows straight through. I rode in the trailer before I purchased it because I wanted to see how the airflow was. It does have curtains with windows in it too so the air just flow right over the horses and straight through to the back. So no opening the curtains for me.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Previous Thread

                                  This was the past thread that a few people have referenced - at least, I think it is the one!
                                  http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/sh...d.php?t=261033

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