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What truck to pull a 4h LQ trailer?

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  • What truck to pull a 4h LQ trailer?

    We're hoping to go to some shows this summer, maybe do some trail riding. We have access to a 4-horse gooseneck with living quarters, and have 4 horses:

    1100 lb gelding
    16.3 gelding
    Draft cross, definitely larger than the 1100 lb guy
    14.3 Arabian cross, petite

    I'm thinking we need to find a good used dually 4x4 (like an F350), but one of us already has a 4x4 (not a dually), and the other truck owner has an older

    I'm thinking more an F350 than the F150. I don't care what make the truck is, I'm just thinking BIG.

    We're not going into any mountains, but there are some hills around here, and we'd be on anything from interstates to back roads. All fairly local travel, no long-distance hauling.

    What would you haul with if you were us?
    Founder of the People Who Prefer COTH Over FB Clique
    People Who Hate to Rush to Kill Wildlife Clique!
    "I Sing Silly Songs to My Animals!" Clique

  • #2
    At least a 3/4 ton. For a 4-horse LQ I like a dually just for stability and the wonders of a diesel engine and an exhaust brake.
    "Sic Gorgiamus Allos Subjectatos Nunc"


    • #3
      Go for the biggest and most powerful you can afford- far better to have too much truck than not enough!

      If you look in the 'around the farm' forum, there has been a few threads lately about this. Might be something useful to you in there.
      Horse Show Names Free name website with over 6200 names. Want to add? PM me!


      • #4
        Trust me, the F150 won't cut it.
        It doesn't have the towing capacity for a 4HLQGN even if it could stop it, and you will be death on wheels in slow motion if you try.

        F350 dually- for a heavy LQ gooseneck, you want those dual wheels so you don't blow tires fully loaded.
        "The Threat of Internet Ignorance: ... we are witnessing the rise of an age of equestrian disinformation, one where a trusting public can graze on nonsense packaged to look like fact."-LRG-AF


        • #5
          OMG I might have nightmares about the F150 pulling that trailer. That is really scary, unless you just don't like your horses anymore.
          I wouldn't pull it with anything less than an F250, and that only if it was a Diesel and a crew cab.
          Would highly recommend an F350, diesel and a dually if you can get it for the stability.
          "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


          • #6
            How big is the LQ? I have seen 3h and 4h LQ that need 450/550 or better to haul them, but then I've seen some that are fine with a 250 or 350. Depends somewhat on how big (and heavy) the trailer is. BTW, I would double check to make sure that your big guys will have enough room in the trailer. While our little QH reining horses fit really well into the standard slant load trailers, I've seen some that would be a bit of a tight fit for a big WB or Draft x.


            • #7
              How heavy is the trailer? Empty and full? That will determine what you need to pull it.

              Remember that starting is optional, stopping is not. If you are going to work towards the upper end of the your truck's capacity then make sure your trailer brakes, controller, etc. are A-Number One.

              Frankly, with something that large I'd look at the medium duty trucks (5500/550 or better, Internationals, etc.) vice any one ton pickup.

              A half ton pickup is a complete non-starter.

              Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão


              • #8
                My friend's have a 3HLQGN and pull theirs easily fully loaded w/ their one ton Chevy duallies (one gas/one diesel) and they think I'd have no problem hauling it w/ my Dodge Ram 3/4 ton ext. cab long box (gas.)
                Last edited by amdfarm; Apr. 17, 2009, 04:28 PM.
                A Merrick N Dream Farm
                Proud Member of "Someone Special to me serves in the Military" Clique


                • #9
                  We pull our 3 horse slant with living quarters with our 15 year old 3/4 ton Dodge single cab (no dually tires) Cummins diesel with no problems. Our trailer is 100% aluminum though...don't know if I would really try this with a full steel trailer and 3 heavy horses on board.


                  • #10
                    anything 2500/3500/5500 (or 250/350/450 for Ford people) diesel dually, single wheel'd trucks are good for things like 2/3 horse... but the weight (reguardless) of a 4horse gn w/living quarters is too much for a single wheel in my opinion. ... wouldn't suggest hauling it with a gasser unless you have deep pockets.

                    Exhaust brakes are amazing... I have a 2500 Ram Cummins (6 speed) Single wheel and it doesn't jerk the horses around at all. Hauls our 2H GN w/dressing room around quite nice. Also, You might want to look into getting gauges... Engine temp/Exhaust temp and so on... they really help (if you were to go for a reasonable distance) and a GOOD break controler (as said above)

                    -just my 2 cents...
                    You board with what I call a, sh!t disturber - Patty Lynch


                    • #11
                      I use a beefed up (suspension wise) 2500 GMC Duramax Diesel HD to pull my 28 foot 10,000 (empty), 15000 loaded, 4H LQ steel slant. It does a good job and I've put 15,000 miles towing across country with this rig. We did have to add some springs to the back end of the truck to level it out. Engine wise it is the same as 3500..the main difference in the two trucks is the suspension and dual wheels. This truck we owned and was paid for so we made it work. I would suggest if you are buying new to consider a 3500 for the suspension/stability alone.

                      We use our transmission hauling mode a lot when on secondary roads and it really really helps the truck handle this trailer.


                      • #12
                        We had a steel 4H with LQ that we pulled all over the East Coast with a 454 dually with heavy duty towing package everything. I would not have wanted to pull it loaded with anything less, but we were in the mountains. I would have preferred the same power in a diesel, because we got something horrid like 6 MPG. But it was safe.

                        You are much better over-trucking than under-trucking. The feeling of not being able to stop is not a good one.


                        • #13
                          I have a C3500 HD turbo diesel. It is not a dually. I hauled a 5H w/ tack room cross country. At a weigh station rig, trailer and load came up just under 17,000. The truck, weighed for registration is 6,500. So I was pulling a load of 10,500.

                          As far as engine power, not a problem. However stability wise I would have liked a dually. I did need to have additional service/upgrade on the suspension though- factory just didn't seem enough.

                          Alas the beast is going in for transmission work... for the second time in 100K miles. Not happy here... but I did/do haul a crapload.

                          Point is... you can do with a non-dually but TRUST me in the end you will WANT or WISH for a dually!


                          • #14
                            Ditto on the no F150 - a train wreck waiting to happen - if you can drag your trailer and horses out of the driveway.

                            I have a F350 dually and LOVE it! Buy the best truck you can afford - not the minimum - you never know when something will go wrong and you don't want to risk your precious cargo, others on the road, or yourself!

                            The dual wheels are great for stability - and if something goes wrong. I picked up some sort of debris on I-20 coming back from Atlanta a couple of months ago and was going about 70 when one of my (ouch) new rear tires blew. Aside from some bumping I had no problems, slowed gradually and pulled over to the shoulder. No problems moving or steering at all. The tire did tear up the fender a bit, but my pony was safe and I didn't end up in an accident.


                            • #15
                              Funny how the opinions of having those dual rear wheels is so different. In my area where snow, freezing rain and MUD are a huge concern for those having to trailer and park at show grounds etc dual tires are terribly frowned upon. Although the weight load for the tires is good (especially if you have a heavy living quarters trailer up front) the fact that the dual tires have no grib and spin like crazy is enough to deter anyone from purchasing them. I cannot count the number of times I have seen dually"s getting pulled out by the farm tractor at shows when the single axle trucks just pull those trailers right outta there!

                              BTW I am looking at those new extra wide rear tires for pick-up trucks to replace my singles that are just about done but cannot find any information on where to purchase them. Does anyone know who makes them or perhaps a dealer in Canada (Ontario)? Thanks


                              • #16
                                1 ton diesel. I don't have/see the need for a dually. I don't have a dually as they are hard to park when NOT hooked up to the trailer. The 150 will NOT pull what you are describing above. You could do the 350 non diesel.....but get the 350. YOu will need the suspension with a trailer that big and the motor on that size trailer if you want to get up a hill.
                                Providence Farm


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by cherham View Post
                                  Funny how the opinions of having those dual rear wheels is so different. In my area where snow, freezing rain and MUD are a huge concern for those having to trailer and park at show grounds etc dual tires are terribly frowned upon. Although the weight load for the tires is good (especially if you have a heavy living quarters trailer up front) the fact that the dual tires have no grib and spin like crazy is enough to deter anyone from purchasing them. I cannot count the number of times I have seen dually"s getting pulled out by the farm tractor at shows when the single axle trucks just pull those trailers right outta there!
                                  So true! When I lived in Northern New York in some of the very heavy snow country, you could not give away a dually. They are terrible on bad roads. We had a contractor friend years ago who used one as his work truck and he used to complain that you could get one stuck if you peed on the tire!

                                  Truly, my beefed up 3/4 ton is doing a very good job with our very big and heavy trailer. Adding additional springs is not that expensive and you don't gain anything engine wise going with a dually 1 ton. You do gain some stability but you give up traction in bad weather.


                                  • #18
                                    The aforementioned friend's duallies are both 4WD and they have no problem w/ getting stuck even in mud and snow.

                                    A Merrick N Dream Farm
                                    Proud Member of "Someone Special to me serves in the Military" Clique


                                    • #19
                                      Same engine and transmission 250,350, & 450

                                      The difference between the Super Duty Turbo Diesels is due to suspension and rear axel ratio. The F250 and F350 have the same towing capacity unless you change the rear axel to the optional 4.3 gear ratio. According to Ford the 4x4 250 can tow a trailer up to 15,800 lbs (16,300 lbs for the 4x2). The F350 4x4 dually also can tow up to 15,800 lbs unless you have the higher ratio rear end which boosts it to 18,300 lbs. The more weight you add to the towing vehicle, the less you have left for trailer pulling.


                                      • #20
                                        I have had four Ford Diesels. The last and the present F350's.

                                        I don't have living quarters, but I do have a 4 horse slant that I have pulled over 200,000 miles.

                                        No dually.

                                        My favorite joke is that a dually is for that guy that pulls up in his truck, gets out and hitches up his britches so you can see his cowboy boots, pulls that big hat down over his eybrows and lights up a Marboro.

                                        Man, what a man.

                                        But his truck won't pull as much as my 4x4 single wheel.

                                        A set of 20" Michelen tires for that weight class costs for four tires $1,500 mounted and balanced. The dually raises the tab to $2,250.

                                        That is a lot to pay to strut that hat and Malboro in front of the gals.

                                        16" tires are much less expensive, but don't last as long and get lower fuel mileage.

                                        A dually is the thing for a wrecker. Or one of those big plumbing trucks with the enclosed body full of pipes and fittings and tools. In both cases lots of weight over the rear axle.

                                        But if your horse trailer is properly balanced and you get the trailer towing kit (I always get the camper kit as well because it has additional anti-sway stuff0, you will never even know the trailer is behind you on curves. If you buy a new 2009, you won't even feel the trailer on a 9% grade. I know, I run one twice a week.

                                        If you are concerned about the hitch weight, which is what puts the load on the truck rear axle, ask the dealer or look in the book. You will be surprised at how little it is.

                                        Be sure to get a 4 x 4. A diesel is so heavy on the front axle that pulling a trailer full or empty, or no trailer at all, you will use that 4 wheel drive many times.

                                        Wet grass from early morning dew, a gravel road that is hilly, etc.....

                                        Ford is giving huge discounts on the F350 series now, but if you want to go the cheapest way get a late 7.3. Mine was a '99. They made it for a couple more years but I don't remember when Ford switched to the 6.0.

                                        Be very very careful if you look at the 6.0. You could not give me one.

                                        The present engine, the 6.3, is the most fun thing I every drove on the ground.