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Trailer purchase question

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    Trailer purchase question

    I've never owned a trailer before but am in the market and really want one sooner rather than later. I don't feel qualified to buy used privately, so am looking at dealers.

    For towing vehicles we have a 2020 dodge ram 1500 with the tow package, and a 2018 vw atlas with AWD. My husband would much prefer that I don't tie up "his" truck whenever I want to go somewhere so I'm trying to decide if I trade the atlas in for a larger tow vehicle or buy a trailer it can haul.

    One local place has a used Bockmann and brand new Adam's trailers (my budget isn't huge, so not looking at anything high end, two horse bumper pull)

    The Bockmann would be ideal but there's no dressing room and it feels so... flimsy compared to the larger Adam's. But the VW isn't going to pull the Adam's.

    I'd be hauling locally only, lessons and clinics and shows, maybe the odd longer haul to some trails.

    Any advice for a newb?

    I recently went through this- I started trailer shopping when I had a 2010 pathfinder with 6k lbs towing and I was convinced I could find something. However, EVERYTHING I read really convinced me hauling with that vehicle is not safe. I think I could have towed a European trailer, but they are hard to find Used, especially where I am and hard to fix because you have to get parts from overseas.

    luckily my pathfinder died this summer and I bought 2019 ram 1500 with towing package... now my trailer search is not limited to weight... I found a used aluminum sooner straight load with escape doors (exactly what I wanted) and will be buying it this weekend! I feel 100% safe towing with my new truck and it was a huge relief not to be so restricted by trailer weight.

    im normally towing by myself so safety is huge priority. My budget did not allow for European trailers, etc. I would just trade it in for a truck... I really didn’t want one, but now that I have one, I love it!!
    Read my adventures with my 4 year old OTTB, Scott's Truluck at: Scottie's Journey, Rehabbing and Retraining a Louisiana-bred OTTB


      Thanks for reply When I did a search around the Euro trailers (bockmann specifically) there was a COTH thread raving about them, which really has me thinking... I'm going to do all the legwork of trading in to see if it makes financial sense, maybe that will solidify my decision. Ugh.


        I am hauling a lightweight 2-horse stock trailer with a Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland. I don't recommend hauling with what is basically a passenger vehicle, even though it has the towing weight capacity and then some. With the short wheel base, it is hella hard to back up. I mean hard to the point of disincentive to haul out. And it's not just me! All the cowboy helpers who always show up to assist come out cursing.

        Get yourself a nice used truck if at all possible. That brings your trailer budget way down - mine was $7K new, where the Bockmans are going to run to $18K when fully equipped.


          Another thing to consider with short wheelbase vehicles (such as SUV or Jeep) is tongue weight and how much the suspension can carry (not just how much the engine can pull.) Look at installing a weight-distributing hitch (which is not the same as anti-sway, but frequently you get the two together in a WD hitch.)

          Without a full weight-distributing hitch (which transfers the tongue weight up towards the front) when the trailer is hooked up and you hit a bump, it can lift the front of the tow vehicle off the ground ... suddenly there is no steering !!! (I did this with my first tow vehicle That combo lasted exactly a single tow trip!)

          I'd recommend checking out . They get into tons of nerdy tow vehicle stuff and have a poster called Mr. Truck ... who obviously doesn't know about the old UDBB in-joke. (Or maybe he does ...) Anyway. There are forums there and 'trailer talk' has overwhelming info and manufacturer reps answering questions.

          Anyway, keep us posted!

          Edited to add: anti-sway bars contribute to being hard to back up because they prevent articulation between the tow vehicle and trailer (but you can't leave it on because they can be bent during backing up.) And without them - OMG, thoroughbred21 wasn't kidding about jackknifing while backing up w/a short wheelbase - holy backup skills, Batman!


            Hubby has the towing veh but you can't use it? Hokay, other issues there...

            Sorry, trade in the Atlas. Lots of nice used 1500s and even 2500s that can tow a 2h bp
            COTH's official mini-donk enabler

            "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl


              Originally posted by TheJenners View Post
              Hubby has the towing veh but you can't use it? Hokay, other issues there...
              Well, unless the OP left off lots of details (that do not matter to the question) like say the hubby uses the truck for work and his schedule frequently includes weekends.


                You can tow with a smaller vehicle, and I never had problems backing. It was nice to know I could fit anywhere.

                That said, if your vehicle limits you to euro style trailers, I'd trade it in for something that can pull harder, and get something more traditional.


                  Originally posted by TheJenners View Post
                  Hubby has the towing veh but you can't use it? Hokay, other issues there...

                  Sorry, trade in the Atlas. Lots of nice used 1500s and even 2500s that can tow a 2h bp
                  Ah, there it is, the COTH helpfulness!

                  Of course I can use it. However if I decide on a Wednesday afternoon that I want to swing on over to an indoor to ride while he's at work, I don't want the hassle of swapping vehicles.

                  He doesn't want my shitty barn boots in his brand new truck. Of course it will happen eventually, but life would certainly be easier with his and hers


                    I would upgrade. When we brought or truck and trailer a couple of years ago we looked at suvs. Everyone we know who has any trailer experience said get the bigger truck. We ended up with a 2017 ram 1500 with a larger engine than standard, greater horse power and a few other things that I the none engine inclined don’t remember, with less than 6000 miles. It was a great deal and I’ve never felt worried about whether I can do something.


                      I like my Bockmann, but the lack of a dressing room is slightly annoying. It’s fine when I go by myself, but is more difficult if you’re hauling a second horse and their associated gear. But I did not want a full size truck (I have a Tacoma), so was looking at either Euro style trailers or a 2H with no dressing room anyway.


                        Another thing to think about- do you want to get rid of your SUV and buy a truck which uses more gas for everyday?
                        A new Boeckmann all equipped is $15200 Can so about $11500 US. (just checked the dealer) If you trade in the VW for a used truck able to haul a new traditional trailer you will lose any price advantage. Boeckmann is also lighter so it is more economical to tow.
                        ThatBayHorse- OP is in Ontario, easy to get parts from local dealer for a Boeckmann. The dealer's website is very helpful re suitable towing vehicles with appropriate wheelbase. The trailer weight is balanced over the axles as opposed to resting on the hitch, that is, the tongue weight is far less than a N.A. trailer. I have had NO problem backing mine up, other than my normal Klutziness that is!
                        I agree that if you are trailering long distances on major highways over mountains through the snow a lighter trailer could be problematic, but Europeans do this and the traffic on the Autobahn is FAR worse than any highway in North America!


                          I really appreciate all the responses! It's been super helpful. I'm definitely reconsidering the Bockmann now, especially of the trade in doesn't make sense. Nothing has to be permanent, if I am ever dying for a dressing room i can fix that in the future.


                            Let us know what you get!


                              I would LOVE to get a Boeckmann, but I've never seen one used. I pull a Brenderup Baron SL with my Acura MDX and the horses love it. I pull two big warmbloods and even on big hills, it pulls like a dream.


                                Originally posted by Pehsness View Post

                                Ah, there it is, the COTH helpfulness!
                                Yanno what, it IS helpful to some people. Not saying you are, but the whole limiting the tow vehicle when you have horses and are looking at buying a trailer thing caught my eye as a control thing. If any of my SOs ever said to me, they would be way less significant a heckuva a lot sooner than me buying a new vehicle. YMMV.
                                COTH's official mini-donk enabler

                                "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl


                                  Originally posted by demidq View Post
                                  Let us know what you get!
                                  Will do!


                                    I promise you will eventually want a dressing I guess it depends on whether you do it now or later?


                                      Originally posted by spacehorse View Post
                                      I promise you will eventually want a dressing I guess it depends on whether you do it now or later?
                                      Later 95% sure we've settled on the Boeckmann (spelling error finally realized!)

                                      demidq - I called Maple Lane and WOW. She was the most helpful person I have ever spoken with, even after disclosing that I was looking at a used trailer local to me.

                                      I'll use the empty horse stall as my dressing room for now. I am envisioning a curtain of some sort for privacy. But showing is such a way off in the future... it won't matter for a long time.


                                        Good for you, OP, you won't regret it. Don't hesitate tho or someone else will snap up your used Boeckmann!
                                        I had a 2 horse steel and aluminum bumper pull, then a 3 horse gooseneck (slant load) that I towed with a pick-up when my daughter was eventing. My Boeckmann is far easier to hook up, tow and back up,and horse likes it far better than the North American trailers we have used.
                                        Last edited by demidq; Jan. 9, 2020, 12:57 PM.