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  1. #1
    Platinum Member DennisArrow's Avatar
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    Sugar Valley, Ga
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    Iseki TL 2300, Kubota RTV, Kubota B7610

    Default Bias or Radial tires for a Trailer

    Just acquired a 17 ft heavy duty flat bed landscape trailer. Tandem wheels, 4 tires, no brakes, independent leaf springs on each axle.

    It is old but totally SOLID........I got it to use for hauling lumber, my RTV, B series kubota, and other stuff......Got a great deal on it; but it needs tires before I carry a load of railroad ties that I am building around my barns for heavy use areas. All in all need 48 ties at an average of 150 pounds each.......So lets say a load of perhaps 4 or 5 thousand pounds.

    I am used to buying tires for my Airstream and am sick and tired of paying the big dollars for radial tires that blow out with less than 5K miles on them.............Yes, my use of the Airstream and this trailer is intermittent and my research indicates that this is the one area that bias ply tires are great for...........

    Anyway.......What do YOU think????????..........I need 5 tires counting the spare that I need to find a wheel for......YES....While doing all of this am checking the wheel bearings.........God bless........Dennis

  2. #2
    Elite Member
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    May 2012
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    Knoxville, TN
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    Bobcat CT225

    Default Re: Bias or Radial tires for a Trailer

    I'm sorry to say, I can't address your question about tires, and I hope you'll forgive me for that. I just wanted to add that, depending on where you live, dual-axle trailers may be required to have brakes on at least one axle. I can't figure out from your description whether you have tandem axles or dually tires on a single axle, though, so you may be okay, but I have never, myself, seen a single-axle, dual-tire utility trailer, so I tend to think it's tandem-axle. Regardless of whether it's legally required, brakes are relatively cheap insurance against all kinds of bad things that can happen when you're towing in the weight range you're towing with. Unless, that is, you've got a seriously heavy tow vehicle! But, for myself, if I had a half-ton or 3/4 ton truck, in the 6000-9000 lb GVWR range, and I was towing 5000 lbs on a trailer that weighed perhaps 1500-2000 lbs itself... that would be too close to the line for me, and I would go really slow and leave lots of stopping distance until I was able to get brakes on the thing.

  3. #3
    Super Member 2LaneCruzer's Avatar
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    Nov 2011
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    9,260
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    Oklahoma
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    John Deere LX172

    Default Re: Bias or Radial tires for a Trailer

    Are new bias ply tires available in your area? I think they quit making them by the mid 80's, and I CERTAINLY wouldn't run a tire that is over 5 or 6 years old, especially if reliability and safety are considerations. There are specialty tire companies that make them for the collector car bunch, but believe me, they are expensive. Sorry I can't speak to their use on a trailer, but I would never, ever put them on a car. In any case, maybe you should consider truck tires? If I recall correctly, my Ford F150 is only rated for about 2000 pounds; 4 to 5k seems like a lot of weight.
    Have Wings, Will Travel.

  4. #4
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bias or Radial tires for a Trailer

    Dennis, 48 ties times 150 pounds each?? My calculator comes up with 7200 pounds instead of 4 or 5 thousand pounds. Then you have the weight of the trailer itself. I would expect a landscape trailer to have no more than 3500 pound axles, so I assume you intend to make more than one trip??? I think most people just put whatever tire is handy on utilitiy trailers, but I'd prefer an "ST" tire; i.e., tires made for trailers.
    Bird

  5. #5
    Silver Member
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    Tennessee
    Tractor
    TC34DA

    Default Re: Bias or Radial tires for a Trailer

    The only blow out I have ever had with a trailer was a bias ply tire. They are still available, all Chinese made brands. Currently running radials that seem to be better quality but pretty sure they are Chinese made also. Probably not many USA made tires for trailers made now.

  6. #6
    Veteran Member Raspy's Avatar
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    Northern Nevada
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    NH TC29DA Bolens G14 Skytrac 5028 Dodge Cummins Jeep Rubicon Grizzly 700

    Default Re: Bias or Radial tires for a Trailer

    Bias ply tires are readily available in 15 inch for trailers and they are good tires. You don't say your wheel size, but a 16' radial with an E rating would be my choice, if you are running 16" wheels. Radials were not popular originally because they squirm more and make the trailer sway. But Load range E tires are fine. I am currently running a set of 265/17 E on my 48' triple axle box trailer. The same tire that comes stock on a Dodge Cummins. My 16' trailer that I haul everything else on, including my tractor sometimes, has 205/15 bias ply tires on it and I like them very much. Only on my second set with many thousands of miles and big loads.

    Just don't run those lousy radials they put or travel trailers. Load range B or whatever they are. More like using inner tubes than real tires.

    Here's the big message from me. GET SOME BRAKES ON THAT TRAILER! On both axles. Without them you are begging for a wreck.
    John

    I only exaggerate enough to compensate for being taken with a grain of salt.

  7. #7
    Platinum Member bucktaker's Avatar
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    Sw Ohio
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    Kubota L5740

    Default Re: Bias or Radial tires for a Trailer

    on my 16 ft landscape with a 7000lb trailer I went to wally world and got 4 the cheapest tires, I think it was 4 tires for 100 bucks. I have loaded 4 tons of crushed limestone several times. Yes I said 4 tons I carry a spare, go slow when fully loaded hope no problems bought the tires in 2005 will do that again...... That being said if I did lots of high speed/long distance driving I would have trailer tires on.
    Kubota L5740 La854
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  8. #8
    Elite Member
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    Knoxville, TN
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    Bobcat CT225

    Default Re: Bias or Radial tires for a Trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by bucktaker View Post
    on my 16 ft landscape with a 7000lb trailer I went to wally world and got 4 the cheapest tires, I think it was 4 tires for 100 bucks. I have loaded 4 tons of crushed limestone several times. Yes I said 4 tons I carry a spare, go slow when fully loaded hope no problems
    "Hope no problems," indeed. If you get into a wreck while towing overloaded, the DOT will crucify you, whether it was your fault or not.

  9. #9
    Veteran Member Raspy's Avatar
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    Northern Nevada
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    NH TC29DA Bolens G14 Skytrac 5028 Dodge Cummins Jeep Rubicon Grizzly 700

    Default Re: Bias or Radial tires for a Trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by joshuabardwell View Post
    "Hope no problems," indeed. If you get into a wreck while towing overloaded, the DOT will crucify you, whether it was your fault or not.

    Do you have any evidence of this? Are they looking for slow moving, short distance landscape trailers so they can "crucify" the driver?

    I don't think he's talking about a CDL with a big rig on the open highway.
    John

    I only exaggerate enough to compensate for being taken with a grain of salt.

  10. #10
    Platinum Member DennisArrow's Avatar
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    Sugar Valley, Ga
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    Iseki TL 2300, Kubota RTV, Kubota B7610

    Default Re: Bias or Radial tires for a Trailer

    Thanks for the thoughts.......I am sifting through them for reality and what strikes me as REAL....

    Josh.......I state in my original post that I am used to pulling an Airstream all over this country and I do understand about the need for a tow vehicle that is not only strong enough to pull up a grade; but stop on one also. I also understand about driving at a speed and manner that conditions call for......Thanks for the thoughts.

    2LaneCruzer.....Bias ply tires are readily available from LOTS of places not all Chinese and yes, come in old style whitewall versions for the collectors. They are actually a bit cheaper than the same size and grades as corresponding radials.......

    Bird.....I REALLY THANK YOU FOR YOUR THOUGHTS..........I apologize that I didnt make it clear that I was gonna carry the ties in 2 or more loads......I did point out that I was limiting myself to at most 5K........MY BAD

    MJones........Actually, ALL bias tires are not made in China.....Perhaps a bit of research will indicate made in USA, Brazil, Mexico, Indonesia, Germany, and France........ALL is a pretty ALL encompasing statement. I do apprectiate the bit of advice about load range B.....Am planning on D or E in Bias or Radial

    Bucktaker, while I dont plan on an 8K load nor will I get the cheapest at any tire shop......I do appreciate the spirit of what YOU say...........I AM NOT gonna do high speed long distance with this trailer but local perhaps once or twice a month at the most trips to the tractor dealer or materials supplier....................

    Raspy.....Thanks for your being able to read and apply what you read....It does make a difference.....

    All in all guys................please give me some more logic about which way to go....I do appreciate the answers from those of you that are NOT just running up a thread count and reply to everything with anything that comes in your head............LOGIC, WISDOM, REALITY, and EXPERIENCE really do matter.......Yes, I am planning on ST type tires but really WANT your thoughts on BIAS OR RADIAL............thanks again for your thoughts.................God bless.............Dennis

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