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Trailer - straight load vs. Slant load

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  • #61
    I prefer my 2H straight-load Turnbow with a ramp. I've never seen a slant load I like, and my question has always been about safety in a wreck. Yes, I know, if the wreck is bad enough, then nothing will help -- but in my mind, it's a lot easier to get horses out of a straight-load than a slant, if the worst case scenario happens. If anyone has any knowledge otherwise, I'd appreciate hearing it!


    • #62
      Weight distribution

      Originally posted by eponacelt View Post
      I bought a straight load for several reasons:

      3 - I don't buy the "slants distribute the weight better" line. In a slant, all the force goes to the front right foot because they're slanted, not perpendicular to the road. In a straight, the force can be evenly distributed between the front two feet (which is reasonably natural) and the chest bar. Maybe that all can't be proved, but it made intuitive sense to me.
      When I think of weight distribution, I think of how the weight of the load is "dispersed" on the floor of the trailer. If you are hauling one horse that weighs 1000+ lbs. in a straight load trailer, that 1000+ lbs is going to be either left of center or right of center. With a slant load, while not a 50/50 split, the weight will span both sides of the trailer floor.

      There is a huge difference between hauling "dead" weight and live weight such a horse that may shift weight from one leg to another in a trailer. Accident avoidance situations are not fun while towing, but the added problems of an unevenly distributed load, would only make matters worse.
      "It were not best that we should all think alike; it is difference of opinion that makes horse races."

      Mark Twain


      • #63
        Originally posted by Alex and Bodie's Mom View Post
        I prefer my 2H straight-load Turnbow with a ramp. I've never seen a slant load I like, and my question has always been about safety in a wreck. Yes, I know, if the wreck is bad enough, then nothing will help -- but in my mind, it's a lot easier to get horses out of a straight-load than a slant, if the worst case scenario happens. If anyone has any knowledge otherwise, I'd appreciate hearing it!

        I have been in, or seen, about 8 wrecks with horse trailers. I was in one where we had to disassemble the rear of the trailer to get the horses out (jack-knife on black ice and went off a 30ft embankment). It was a straight load. Only the front of the trailer was clear and the rear was embedded in the bank so the doors could not be opened. I think it would have been safer and easier if it was a slant or stock. As it was I became pinned between the partition and horse as they struggled. In a slant I would have been able to get out of the way. This was all back in the day before slants.

        Had it been a slant I would have been able to control the horse easier and bring them around to come out forward. But as it was, the horse bolted backward over me and ran butt first into the bank.

        As you can see, your question is very vague because it depends on the type of accident. I have been broad-sided with a straight-load, have seen head-ons with slants and each had advantages and disadvantages in the situation.

        In the end, a well built solid trailer and good driving is more important than slant or straight load when it comes to accident safety.


        • #64
          Typically, slants are not recommended for large horses unless you go with a big horse option. If your horse does fit, the Double D Safetack is a great way to load horses safely. Gooseneck Horse Trailer for sale

          Check out the video
          3 horse slant gooseneck
          Last edited by DD_TrailerMan; Jun. 9, 2011, 10:16 AM.


          • #65
            I far prefer a straight load and have had one for years. I have bigger horses. I recently had to upgrade and bought a big warmblood size slant load. I am not crazy about it and don't like the loading/unloading process. I don't think my horses haul as well. They really seemed to like the headroom from side to side that they had in their large straight load. What makes it work for me is that it has a side unloading ramp, so that at least I can get the first horse out separately. This is a real bonus.

            My next trailer will be a 2+1 so that I have both options.

            From a technical large animal rescue perspective, the safest trailer for wrecks and rollovers is considered a steel trailer with fiberglass roof, no interior dividers, and drop down window sides versus slat sides (feet get stuck in the slats during a rollover). At least that's what I'm told.


            • #66
              Originally posted by tabula rashah View Post
              Personally I HATE straight loads and would never own one. Horses seem to love my slant- it is very roomy and airy and I've had several hard loaders jump right on it. My slant also is large enough for my 17.3 WB to fit in it fine. I also love that I can convert my 3 horse slant from a 3 horses to two boxes or one giant stall.
              One thing that I would try to avoid in a slant though is the rear tack- I like to have a full back door.
              Can you tell me what kind of slant you have? We are looking to trade ours in and all the slants I've seen seemed to be geared towards tiny QH's. THANKS=)