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  1. #1
    Gold Member davygp38's Avatar
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    Default The Gatormade expierence.

    After countless hours of research, and discussions, and looking at trailers, I ordered a Gatormade 22.5K goosekneck elite trailer. The trailer has arrived at the dealer lot, and I am leaving in two hours to pick it up. Because of all the threads, I read concerning opinions on Gatormade (both good, and bad,) I am starting this thread to answer those questions, concerning initial Quality, and the overall buying expierence.
    Last edited by davygp38; 05-19-2010 at 08:08 AM. Reason: not done

  2. #2
    Gold Member davygp38's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Gatormade expierence.

    I will start off by explaining the ordering process. I contacted the Gatormade factory salesman, Paul Etters, and gave him my list of options, that I wanted on a 22.5K trailer. I wanted the extra wide assisted ramps, a spare tire, and a locking storage box. He told me the only way to get those options, was to order the "elite" series trailer. I was not to happy about this, because like everything in life, for a working man, price is always a consideration. The elite trailer was $7995.00. It comes with a bunch of options, that I didn't need, like a light bar, with work lights, and Led running lights. It has a steel backer plate for the riser beams on the goosekneck itself, it has Fire extinguisher, and extra grab irons, and steps. I figure this added about a $1000, to the cost. I went for it anyway. I did tell him, " No hard feelings, but this trailer better be perfect when I pick it up, or we will do it over." I put a $1000 deposit via credit card, and he sent me an invoice via e-mail. The Gatormade factory, is in Kentucky, which is over 600 miles for me. Gatormade does has a few pick up points around, one of which is only about 160 miles away. It took about 4 weeks for the trailer to get to the lot, and about two weeks for me to get a chance to get up there. I called the contact person, at the pick up point, and was told to bring cash, or certified check. I told this person, the same thing I told Mr. Etters, the trailer better be perfect. I also wanted to make sure someone would be there to help me with the hookup, and go over the operation, of the trailer. (I showed up to buy a 67 hp wood chipper from a guy once, and his wife was the only one there.) So now I am getting the truck fueled up, and heading up state.

  3. #3
    Super Star Member Diamondpilot's Avatar
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    Jinma 254/284 Ford 861 Powermaster at work

    Default Re: The Gatormade expierence.

    While many have reported issues with Gatormade trailers lately they are everywhere around Indiana and I have been around quite a few and all were of good quality.

    I am like you though. It better be right when I pick it up.

    Chris

  4. #4
    Gold Member davygp38's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Gatormade expierence.

    I am sorry, it took so long to post this, but I was trying to give Gatormade a chance to get back to me. I picked up my trailer at a small lot that turned out to be 200 miles from my house. It was a little rainy, which turned out to be a problem. At first glance, the trailer is quite impressive. it is very solid, and well built, as far as the frame, and welding are concerned. I was also very happy with the extra wide spring assisted ramps. As I looked closer, I noticed that the paint job was absolutely horrible. I do not exaggerate, when I say that the runs cover the entire trailer. Little alarm bells were going off, so I looked underneath, to make sure the frame, and cross members were painted. They were, and since it was raining, I did not dilly dally under there. I wish I had. We tested the lights, and the ramps, and I checked to make sure there was oil in the hubs. I did another quick walk around, and I got in the truck and headed for home. On the way home, I stopped for some roadside BBQ, and what do you think I saw while walking back to the truck? Why I saw that a rear taillight had fallen out. Yup, hanging there by the wires. I got down to look, and I found that the holes for the lights were 3/8 of an inch to big. On both sides. I must have hit a bump, and it was enough to jar it loose. I put the light back, and taped the back of the lights to the frame, with duct tape. I then tried to call the salesman from Gatormade, and the guy from the lot, with no luck. I headed home. Once I got home, I inspected the trailer from top to bottom, and front to back. Guess what I found? Scotch connectors. I had specifically asked Paul at Gatormade, if this thing had scotch connectors, and he told me absolutely not. Because of the rain, I did not want to take the time to crawl around under the trailer like I had wanted to. Once I saw that they had painted the entire bottom, I got out, and never thought to look to close at the wires. I had planned on walking away, if I saw one scotch connector. I called Paul at Gatormade, and very calmly explained to him what I found, and asked what he was going to do for me. He asked me to e-mail him the pictures I took, which I will post here, and he would get back to me. when I here from him, I will post the response. These pictures show the bad paint, the scotch connectors, the taillight hanging from the rear of my trailer, and the space between the top of the hole for the light, and the top of the light.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -trailer-001-jpg   -trailer-003-jpg   -trailer-006-jpg   -trailer-008-jpg   -trailer-012-jpg  

    -trailer-013-jpg   -trailer-002-jpg  

  5. #5
    Super Member flusher's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Gatormade expierence.

    Quote Originally Posted by davygp38 View Post
    I am sorry, it took so long to post this, but I was trying to give Gatormade a chance to get back to me. I picked up my trailer at a small lot that turned out to be 200 miles from my house. It was a little rainy, which turned out to be a problem. At first glance, the trailer is quite impressive. it is very solid, and well built, as far as the frame, and welding are concerned. I was also very happy with the extra wide spring assisted ramps. As I looked closer, I noticed that the paint job was absolutely horrible. I do not exaggerate, when I say that the runs cover the entire trailer. Little alarm bells were going off, so I looked underneath, to make sure the frame, and cross members were painted. They were, and since it was raining, I did not dilly dally under there. I wish I had. We tested the lights, and the ramps, and I checked to make sure there was oil in the hubs. I did another quick walk around, and I got in the truck and headed for home. On the way home, I stopped for some roadside BBQ, and what do you think I saw while walking back to the truck? Why I saw that a rear taillight had fallen out. Yup, hanging there by the wires. I got down to look, and I found that the holes for the lights were 3/8 of an inch to big. On both sides. I must have hit a bump, and it was enough to jar it loose. I put the light back, and taped the back of the lights to the frame, with duct tape. I then tried to call the salesman from Gatormade, and the guy from the lot, with no luck. I headed home. Once I got home, I inspected the trailer from top to bottom, and front to back. Guess what I found? Scotch connectors. I had specifically asked Paul at Gatormade, if this thing had scotch connectors, and he told me absolutely not. Because of the rain, I did not want to take the time to crawl around under the trailer like I had wanted to. Once I saw that they had painted the entire bottom, I got out, and never thought to look to close at the wires. I had planned on walking away, if I saw one scotch connector. I called Paul at Gatormade, and very calmly explained to him what I found, and asked what he was going to do for me. He asked me to e-mail him the pictures I took, which I will post here, and he would get back to me. when I here from him, I will post the response. These pictures show the bad paint, the scotch connectors, the taillight hanging from the rear of my trailer, and the space between the top of the hole for the light, and the top of the light.
    What a POS.
    I can understand crappy paint, welds, electrical connectors, etc on a $1K landscape trailer from HD or Lowe's. But this Gatormade GN is an expensive hunk of hardware that you'd expect to have a lot better quality. As usual, caveat emptor.

  6. #6
    Gold Member davygp38's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Gatormade expierence.

    I know what you mean flusher. I can't believe a company even a small company does not have anyone doing Quality control. This is their most expensive trailer, if I was the salesman, I would have checked the trailer myself, before it left. Of course, I will hard wire the scotch connections, there are 4. I can fill those holes, and then silicone the lights in. I must admit, it is a rock solid trailer. The brakes on the trailer, are strong enough to jerk my truck to a stop, going down hill with 10000 lbs on the bed. and those ramps, are the nuts. Its just that I feel like I paid what they asked, and did not get what they promised. If I don't get an apology, and some kind of consideration, I will make it my mission, to discredit them on all the sites I belong to including Ford truck enthusiast,and the diesel shop. I am not expecting a substantial amount of consideration, but they have to do something.

  7. #7
    Elite Member johnk's Avatar
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    Kubota GST Grand L3130 w/ 723 loader, Ags

    Default Re: The Gatormade expierence.

    I'd be pretty torqued if I paid that kind of money and didn't get what I was promised. I;d follow up on the discrepencies and not let it rest. I'm not a nit picker but the paint an, scotch locks and light falling out would put me over the top. Let us know how it pans out.... Good luck.

  8. #8
    Super Star Member Diamondpilot's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Gatormade expierence.

    Man how things have gone down hill. I have never seen runs like that on any trailer by any manufacture. The scotch lock will always be used by manufactures because they are quick and cheap. The lights not fitting is a new one for me.

    I would make them build a new trailer with first class paint and all the little things fixed delivered to my home or a file a law suit.

    The only thing you do not have going for you is you took delivery of it. I hope it does not come back to bit you in the arse.

    Chris

  9. #9
    Elite Member schmism's Avatar
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    Peoria IL
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    New holland TC(33)

    Default Re: The Gatormade expierence.

    Quote Originally Posted by Diamondpilot View Post
    I would make them build a new trailer with first class paint and all the little things fixed delivered to my home or a file a law suit.

    Chris
    Id take a partial refund for the bad paint. Id have it rewired on there dime (or have them rewire it at my location) and have them fix the light issue (again cover the cost of the fix or fix it at my location)

    in short id have them credit me the $1000 back to my card (easy enough to do on there end) and call it even.
    Steve - TC33D 4x4 FEL, dual rear remotes with toys

  10. #10
    Gold Member
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    New Holland TC45DA SS

    Default Re: The Gatormade expierence.

    Welcome to the Gatormade owners club. The latest problems with mine have been the grease seals leaking (non-oil bath) and finding a large void in one of the bearing races. It looked like an air bubble while the race was cast. The Gatormade salesman told me these trailers now have "American axles" under them but I found that the bearings, races, seals, drums, shoes, and backing plate all had made in China on them so I'm pretty sure the entire axle is Chinese.

    Mike

    Edit: it also looks like they forgot to put the red/white tape on the back of your trailer.

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