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See also: Agricultural Carts, Wagons, and Trailers

2001 Royal CHT-70-714-72 14-ft Tri-axle Trailer
A trailer is a vehicle without any power, designed to be attached to a truck tractor or rig for transporting goods and materials from liquids to dry goods to heavy equipment and vehicles. Trailers come in various lengths, widths, configurations, and classes. The box trailer, a common type of trailer, is completely enclosed, allowing for goods and materials to be completely protected during hauling. A flatbed trailer features an open deck so goods and materials can be stacked up. Common types of trailers include dump trailers, utility trailers, semi-trailers, full or drawbar trailers, and trailers with goosenecks designed to carry heavy loads.

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[edit] Features/How it Works

Trailers range from small two-wheeled pneumatic tired trailers with hauling capacities of up to 500 pounds (227 kg) attached behind a vehicle to trailers with a 30-ton hauling capacity. Trailers are suspended with semi-elliptic springs, rubber, or air.[1] There are many types of trailers used for a broad range of purposes.

2008 MAC 48-ft Tri-axle Walking Floor Trailer
For example, utility trailers are often used for hauling small utility-based equipment such as lawn mowers and other vehicles. Equipment trailers are used for hauling compact machinery like skid steer loaders and excavators. Dump trailers are commonly used for handling tear-off removal and are available in various types and sizes.[2] A gooseneck trailer is built with greater stability over other trailers and has a tighter turning radius for hauling heavier loads.

Semi-trailers have no front axle and are towed by truck, tractor, the tail end of another trailer, or a detachable front-axle assembly called a dolly. Semi-trailer trucks are also called 18-wheelers, tractor-trailers, or big rigs, or an articulated lorry. The term articulated lorry, artic for short, is used in the U.K. to distinguish a towing engine and a trailer that carries freight of some kind.[3] Semi-trailers are either single axle with two wheels, tandem axle with four wheels, or tri axle with six wheels. A full trailer is a trailer supported by both rear and front axles and a drawbar. The trailer does not have its own power or transmission system and is connected to the drawing vehicle with a drawbar that maneuvers the front wheels of the trailer to follow in the path of the drawing vehicle. The four-wheeled rigid vehicle and trailer is the most common drawbar configuration. In some situations, a semi-trailer can also be configured into a drawbar trailer using a converter dolly.[4]

[edit] Types

[edit] Beam Trailer

A beam trailer is a narrow, heavy-duty lowboy trailer designed to carry large equipment such as crawler tractors.

[edit] Bottom/Center Dump Trailer

Bottom/center dump trailers are used to haul loose granular materials that flow easily from the bottom of a trailer when dispensed, such as sand, gravel, and salt. A bottom or center dump trailer functions similarly to a dump truck except the load is dispelled in a controlled fashion through the middle of the trailer floor. The trailer box can be heated and features single or double gates and a push block.

[edit] B-train Hiboy

A B-train hiboy is a type of trailer used to haul stackable items that do not need the protection of a van trailer. They come in a variety of lengths and widths, and are loaded from a dock or by a forklift. A B-train has two tandem axle trailers and a fifth wheel coupling on the rear of the lead trailer.

[edit] Cattle Trailer

A cattle trailer is a trailer with one or two stories designed to transport cattle.

[edit] Chip Trailer

Chip trailers are specifically designed to carry the maximum number of wood chips. They are often constructed of lightweight material, and often have a drop frame to accomodate a greater volume of chips.

[edit] Combination Trailer

A combination trailer is the term used to describe a hiboy or flatbed trailer that has an aluminum deck and a steel frame.

[edit] Curtain Side Trailer

The curtain side trailer is a van trailer with a rigged top  with a special pullback curtain for easy loading and unloading of goods. Curtainside trailers are particularly popular in Europe and have evolved from transport systems that used tarps.[5] This term has also been used  when describing a retractable tarp system in the United States.

[edit] End Dump Trailer

End dump trailers trailers are pulled by truck tractors and used to transport loose material. They are similar to a dump truck in that the load is discharged from a chute in the back end of the trailer.

[edit] Equipment Trailer

Equipment trailers are similar in appearance to lowboy trailers and are used for hauling equipment but tend to be smaller in both size and carrying capacity. The deck bed of the trailer is available in a tilted configuration.

[edit] Flatbed Trailer

A flatbed trailer, also known as a hiboy or platform trailer, is long a trailer with no sides or roof, used to haul stackable items. More than one hiboy may be joined together to form a train. Flatbed trailers come in a variety of widths and lengths.

[edit] Grain Trailer

A grain trailer is a trailer used for hauling grain and other edible farm products, usually discharging from the bottom or the rear.

[edit] Hiboy

Hiboys are used to haul stackable items that do not need the protection of a van trailer. They come in a variety of lengths and widths, and are loaded from a dock or by a forklift.

[edit] Jeeps and Booster

Trailer jeeps and boosters are trailers designed to handle and haul special loads such as motor scrapers. The unique advantage of jeeps and boosters is that they spread the load of the trailer and cargo over more axles. Jeeps and boosters are commonly sold in combination with lowboy trailers.

[edit] Livestock Trailer

A livestock trailer is a trailer designed with open ventilation, used to transport livestock such as cattle, horses, and pigs.

[edit] Log Trailer

Log trailers are used for the transport of logs.

[edit] Lowboy Trailer

The lowboy features a flatbed located close to the ground for pulling heavy loads such as large, industrial machinery. Lowboy trailers come in a variety of widths and lengths and are designed with tandem or tri axle configurations.

[edit] Oilfield Float

An oilfield float is used in the oilfield industry. Oilfield floats are differentiated from hiboys (flatbed trailers) by the fact that they always have a pick-up throat, a tail roll, and either folding landing gear or no landing gear.

[edit] Pneumatic Bulk Trailer

Bulk trailers are used to haul dry goods such as gypsum and cement. They are often equipped with a blower to assist in loosening and unloading the contents.

[edit] Pole Trailer

A pole trailer is a semi-trailer that extends on a pole type frame and is used for hauling long trees or poles.

[edit] Pup Trailer

A pup trailer is shorter than an average single axle trailer, usually measuring between 26 and 32 feet (8 to 10 m) in length and pulled behind a primary trailer. The term can also refer to a short trailer known as a pull trailer, which has an extended tongue or a gooseneck that couples to a pintle hook.

[edit] Reefer Trailer

The reefer trailer is an insulated van trailer with a built-in refrigeration system for transporting perishable food products. Diesel-, propane-, or gas-powered generators attached directly to the trailer are used to regulate the temperature of the trailer.

[edit] Rolloff Trailer

The rolloff is a trailer with a flat, moveable bed. The trailer is loaded by tilting the bed deck backwards until the rear edge of the deck reaches ground level.

[edit] Side Dump Trailer

The side dump trailer also operates in the same capacity as a dump truck, with the load being discharged from the trailer by tipping the box over to the side.

[edit] Step Deck Trailer

Step decks are configured similarly to a hiboy or flatbed trailer, designed to haul lighter loads than lowboy trailers. The difference lies in the bed of a step deck trailer—it features an upper deck that drops off into a lower deck.

[edit] Super B-train Hiboy

Super B-train hiboys are used to haul stackable items that do not need the protection of a van trailer. They come in a variety of lengths and widths, and are loaded from a dock or by a forklift. A super B-train has a tri-axle lead trailer with a tri-axle pup and a fifth-wheel coupling mounth on the rear of the lead trailer.

[edit] Tank Trailer

Tank trailers are used for hauling various liquids such as gasoline, milk, and petroleum, in addition to dry bulk products.

[edit] Vacuum Trailer

A vacuum trailer is used to suck up large quantities of wet or dry materials. They can range in size from small to large units.

[edit] Van Trailer

Also called a box trailer or dry van, the van trailer is the most common type of trailer. It is used primarily for transporting goods that require some form of protection against the elements, such as bulk materials. Van trailers vary in length from 24 to 28 feet (7.3 to 8.5 m) in single axle configurations and 40 to 53 feet (12.2 to 16 m) in tandem and multi-axle configurations. Small van trailers are used for shorter, more local transport and deliveries and larger-sized trailers, for hauling goods over long distances.

[edit] Common Manufacturers

[edit] Used & Unused Trailers for Sale

Search for unused and used trailers being sold at Ritchie Bros. unreserved public auctions.

[edit] References

  1. Leeming, D.J. Hartley, R. Heavy Vehicle Technology. Nelson Thornes. 1981. pg.13
  2. Famous Markets of Trailer Industry. Trucks Junction Blog. 2008-11-17.
  3. Semi-trailer. Nationmaster.com Encyclopedia. 2008-11-17.
  4. Leeming, D.J. Hartley, R. Heavy Vehicle Technology. Nelson Thornes. 1981. pg.13
  5. Curtainside Trailers. Allvan Corporation. 2008-11-17.