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Slant load vs. Straight load trailer??

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  • Slant load vs. Straight load trailer??

    Right now I have a 2 horse straight load BP (no dressing room). I'd like to upgrade to a newer trailer with a dressing room that's small enough to pull with a Tundra. I've noticed the slant loads can fit a dressing room without adding to the length of the trailer. That would be nice since it would put less stress on the truck.

    My problem is that I have a big horse - 17.1 hand draft cross. Some people are telling me that he might be too big for a slant load. I guess the slots can be narrow and there could be a problem with head room. Height isn't an issue since I can get an extra tall, I'm talking nose-to-tail and side-to-side room.

    Does anyone have experience with big horses in slant loads? I'm looking at 2 horse BP models. Does it matter who makes the trailer? Or should I just stick with a straight load?
    The big guy: Lincoln

    Southern Maryland Equestrian

  • #2
    Yeah, you might have troubles with your horse in a slant spot. Do you only haul him? A slant load should be fine if you can give him both slant spots. If you've got to haul two horses regularly, I would look at a straight load.

    Comment


    • #3
      Take a look at the Featherlite "Big Horse" series. They are light since they are aluminum and are huge on the inside. We have the 2 horse BP slant in the Big Horse and we regularly fit a 17.3 Oldenburg and a 17.2 dutch (built like a tank) irish cross in there with plenty of room to spare.

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Originally posted by mjrtango93 View Post
        Take a look at the Featherlite "Big Horse" series. They are light since they are aluminum and are huge on the inside. We have the 2 horse BP slant in the Big Horse and we regularly fit a 17.3 Oldenburg and a 17.2 dutch (built like a tank) irish cross in there with plenty of room to spare.
        Good to know, thanks!!

        Simkie, usually I'm hauling two horses.

        Any ideas on a straight load w/ dressing room that won't be too heavy for a Tundra? My trailer now is steel, I'm assuming getting an aluminum trailer would help with the weight issue?
        The big guy: Lincoln

        Southern Maryland Equestrian

        Comment


        • #5
          My 18hh guy is smooshed in a slant that was made for drafts (Jamco, 3 horse slant). He's much more comfy in a straight. Hawks have a wide varity of options and are pretty reasonably priced. I believe those are steel frame aluminum body.
          *bad shoulder clique * Member of "OMGiH, I loff my Mare" Clique! * Proud owner of a CANTER Cutie!
          My Horses; COMH Page; My Blog

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          • #6
            4-Star will build you any configuration you want. The base slant design is quite roomy as it is (I can fit my friend's long 17hh gelding on mine, no prob), but changing the angle of the slant stalls can buy you some extra space.

            I was a die-hard straight load person until I got my 3H, and surprised myself by really liking the slant. Mine is very roomy, well-designed/built, and extremely user-friendly, so that makes it easy to love.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Duckz View Post
              Good to know, thanks!!

              Simkie, usually I'm hauling two horses.

              Any ideas on a straight load w/ dressing room that won't be too heavy for a Tundra? My trailer now is steel, I'm assuming getting an aluminum trailer would help with the weight issue?
              Not sure what your tow is or how much your horses weigh. The weight on ours I believe is #3200 or so.

              Comment


              • #8
                there are already a bunch of good threads on slant vs straight load -- definitely worth reading.

                I'd use anything BUT a slant. They're deceptively small for the horses and deceptively heavy to tow. It's hard to get horses out, and you have to unload horse #2 and #3 if you only wanted #1 out. Horses do not like to haul on the angle the slants put them on. Slants usually have the left door blocked off with a tack box, making the entrance appear smaller (and making some horses reluctant to get on). I also don't like that they don't have chest or butt bars; the only thing holding a horse in place is the partition.

                I saw this based on owning straight loads & a stock trailer. At one poing I was also borrowing a friend's high-end fancy, newer "oversized" 3-h slant. I have big horses, and at the time it was a big Belgian I was riding/hauling. Once or twice fighting with the slant load, and it just wasn't worth the fight. He'd sort-of fit but it was scary getting him through the bottleneck of the narrow doorway then asking him to stand as we pushed a partition up against his side.

                If you're adding a room and not adding length to the trailer, that space has to come from somewhere (the horses' area!). Look really carefully at the total length and width the horse has -- measuring length of horse's space not of length the whole angled wall (does that make sense?). Also consider that some horses are not happy to see the big metal partition swinging towards them, and until the partition is locked in, a freaking-out horse can explode out of the trailer.
                Veterinarians for Equine Welfare

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by MayS View Post
                  Also consider that some horses are not happy to see the big metal partition swinging towards them, and until the partition is locked in, a freaking-out horse can explode out of the trailer.
                  Been here, done this, and got the broken elbow to show for it. Even horses who are good on trailers (like my been-everywhere campaigner) hated the slant load and became a complete a$$ about it. I know some people love them and swear by them, but really consider what your horse thinks.

                  I'll also say that in looking for trailers recently, the difference in weight between slant and straight load was negligible. You're not really saving anything.
                  Here Be Dragons: My blog about venturing beyond the lower levels as a dressage amateur.

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                  • #10
                    My experiences with slant-load trailers suggest that they offer a great deal of convenience to the rider at the expense of comfort to the horse.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Another straight load fan here. No way would I want a slant, especially if I was hauling more than one horse.

                      My 1400 lb ISH,Guinnes-barrel-on-legs tank fits quite nicely in my CM Saratoga
                      I wasn't always a Smurf
                      Penmerryl's Sophie RIDSH
                      "I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was"
                      The ignore list is my friend. It takes 2 to argue.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Good Old Sledge View Post
                        My experiences with slant-load trailers suggest that they offer a great deal of convenience to the rider at the expense of comfort to the horse.
                        I would disagree. A well built slant provides a support that the horse can lean against during acceleration (usually pretty gentle) and deceleration (which can be dramatic).

                        As with anything, the horse must trained to trailer. Some will "object" to either straight or slant, some won't.

                        I've owned three straights, and now a slant (all Featherlights but one). I don't really have a personal preference. I think the horses are probably more comfortable in the slant that a head forward straight. A head to the rear straight might be marginally more comfortable for the horse but I'm not really sure.

                        I've had horses hauled professionally (as far as CA) in both kinds. The horses arrived at their destination safe and sound.

                        IMO a smaller, more secure (which will be more restrictive) method like the slant is probably safer. The idea of 1000-1500 pounds of horse "going adrift" inside any kind of trailer is un-nerving to me. The slant seems to provide a bit more of a "seat belt" effect.

                        At the end of the day there's not much evidence to support any method.

                        G.
                        Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Good Old Sledge View Post
                          My experiences with slant-load trailers suggest that they offer a great deal of convenience to the rider at the expense of comfort to the horse.
                          Great Observation!

                          Horses never complain about a trailer having too much room. If you wish to go light with a dressing room, get an aluminum stock trailer. I bought an EBY 24' aluminum stock trailer this spring, 4' dressing room and 20' on the floor...it weighs 4,040 lbs. Tons of room. You can get a nice bumper pull stock trailer with dressing room that weighs considerably less. I towed a 16' steel stock trailer (Corn-Pro) with a Chevy Avalanche 1/2 ton truck. It towed great (yep, it was within the towing capacity of the truck) and was a very inviting and comfortable trailer for the horses during long trips.

                          Better 2 carried well than 3 miserable. Do it right, your horses will thank you.
                          "Sic Gorgiamus Allos Subjectatos Nunc"

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Oh for crying out loud, all this stupidity about what the horse likes, or what is better for the animal, and convenience for the rider. EITHER YOUR HORSE WILL FIT IN A SLANT, OR HE WONT. None of my horses ever spoke to me and said which is better. If a horse wont load BOTH a slant and a straight that is a rider/handler problem.......not the horse.

                            Neither the slant or straight load is better.....whichever works for you is what matters. These guys complaining about how terrible a slant is because THEIR silly butt forced a horse into a trailer that was to small for him is asinine.

                            Duckz,

                            It sounds like your horse will not fit well in a 'standard' slant, you may find an oversize or have one made that would work. I suspect a straight would serve you better, and I doubt the weight savings would make much difference.
                            Disclaimer;
                            Nearly all of what I post will be controversial to someone. Believe nothing you read on a chat room, research for yourself and LEARN.
                            Not in the 42% or the 96%

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by 2bee View Post
                              Oh for crying out loud, all this stupidity about what the horse likes, or what is better for the animal, and convenience for the rider...None of my horses ever spoke to me and said which is better...These guys complaining about how terrible a slant is because THEIR silly butt forced a horse into a trailer that was to small for him is asinine.
                              My horses speak to me...I can tell when they're uncomfortable, nervous, content or just plain relaxed. I can tell when a horse gets off the trailer if he had an easy time during the trip or a miserable trek, scrambling for a secure footing.

                              Studies have been done regarding head position for a long trip, types of flooring, direction of the horse during trailering (most of mine prefer to face backward given a choice). The attitude of "Screw the horse, I really don't see them as a living animal" is very strange to me and more common in polo riders who too commonly see horses as disposable and guys who foxhunt only riding to hounds and again seeing the horse as a motorized vehicle that sweats.

                              Horses "talk" if we pay attention to their cues. I can't arrive at a show and expect my horses to perform well if they're miserable from the trip.
                              "Sic Gorgiamus Allos Subjectatos Nunc"

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Trakehner View Post
                                My horses speak to me...I can tell when they're uncomfortable, nervous, content or just plain relaxed. I can tell when a horse gets off the trailer if he had an easy time during the trip or a miserable trek, scrambling for a secure footing.

                                Studies have been done regarding head position for a long trip, types of flooring, direction of the horse during trailering (most of mine prefer to face backward given a choice). The attitude of "Screw the horse, I really don't see them as a living animal" is very strange to me and more common in polo riders who too commonly see horses as disposable and guys who foxhunt only riding to hounds and again seeing the horse as a motorized vehicle that sweats.

                                Horses "talk" if we pay attention to their cues. I can't arrive at a show and expect my horses to perform well if they're miserable from the trip.
                                Yes studies have been done, they are no more definitive that what will be arrived at here.

                                Maybe you could stop by and talk to my horses and see what they think since you’re implying I don’t care..........good grief.
                                Disclaimer;
                                Nearly all of what I post will be controversial to someone. Believe nothing you read on a chat room, research for yourself and LEARN.
                                Not in the 42% or the 96%

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Horses don't talk. They do communicate.

                                  Trailering is not about equine comfort, it's about safety for humans and equines. If it was all about equine comfort we'd never put a horse in a trailer. Or a stall. Or in any sort of enclosure. From that perspective a slant is probably better for impact protection (a 1000 pound horse careening around inside an aluminum trailer is not something I like to contemplate).

                                  From other perspectives a slant may be disadvantageous. But the same can be said about any method of trailering. Compromise, i.e. picking the optimum combination of safety and convienience, is the name of the game.

                                  At the end of the day it's what the human chooses to make THEM most comfortable.

                                  G.
                                  Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I have a 3 horse slant GN w/ full dressing room-I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it! and my horses do too- I've never had a problem with anyone not fitting ect. My trailer is really versatile. I can have three separated stalls (and yes, if I leave it that way, the first two would be two small for a big horse), two box stalls, leave the whole thing open like a stock trailer, etc. Actually yesterday, I went and picked up a new mare from a rescue. She's 5 but barely leads and had never been on a trailer before. I set up the trailer so I had one small stall in the front (and I took my very quite Morgan mare along in that so the new girl would have company) and left the back like a big box stall. We had the new horse on in less than five minutes and she had no problem for the two hour haul home- I think that speaks volumes. This trailer is also way lighter and easier to pull than my two horse BP that I used to have.

                                    The one thing that I dislike about a lot of slants is the rear dressing room- I specifically looked for one that did NOT have that.

                                    Here's a pic of the one that is very similar to what I have- mine is a bit shorter:
                                    http://www.exiss.com/gooseneck_lives...er/modelstc20/

                                    PS- My 17.2 hand long bodied Westfalen fits just fine in it
                                    I'm good at being uncomfortable so I can't stop changing all the time -Fiona Apple, Extraordinary Machine
                                    If I were your appendages, I'd hold open your eyes so you would see- Incubus

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                                    • #19
                                      I pull with a Tundra . . .

                                      I have (and looooove) my Hawk 2-horse straight load BP with dressing room. I bought the larger thoroughbred size and it's been a great trailer. I tow with my V8 Tundra (with towing package) and we go everywhere with it.
                                      If you cannot set a good example, at least serve as a terrible warning....

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Guilherme View Post
                                        Horses don't talk. They do communicate.

                                        .....If it was all about equine comfort we'd never put a horse in a trailer. Or a stall. Or in any sort of enclosure.....
                                        Or ride them for our amusement to begin with.....
                                        Disclaimer;
                                        Nearly all of what I post will be controversial to someone. Believe nothing you read on a chat room, research for yourself and LEARN.
                                        Not in the 42% or the 96%

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