New Utility Trailer + Wimpy Truck

   #1  

Tractorable

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I’m interested in buying a 20ft utility trailer so I can haul materials to/from our eight acre property. Materials to be hauled include dead trees, 16ft fence boards, mulch, small loads of stone, my FJ40 Land Cruiser, and compact tractor + implements. I want to buy a trailer that will suit both my short term and long term goals.

The problem is that I currently drive a wimpy truck, a 2006 Honda Ridgeline with 217K miles. I plan to buy either an F150 or Super Duty in the future when I can afford it. However, I’m finding that country life is expensive and I can’t simultaneously afford a new truck, trailer, tractor, and implements all at the same time.

My Ridgeline has a towing capacity of 5000lbs. Can I haul a 20ft utility trailer if I’m mindful to keep the load under my towing limit? Or would this trailer have my bumper dragging on the ground the moment I hooked it up? This would be short term 1-2 years until I can afford a more capable truck.
 
   #2  

4570Man

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I’d guess the trailer weighs half your towing capacity. That doesn’t leave room for much tractor.
 
   #3  

dodge man

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How heavy do you want to haul? Is a 7000 lb trailer enough. The trailer would weigh about 2000 leaving you about 5000 lbs of cargo. The reason I bring it up if you get a Super Duty you could tow a 10000 or even a 14000 lb trailer. Either way you current rig won稚 tow what you need unless it is a very small tractor.
 
   #4  

3930dave

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If you stick with the FJ as your heaviest load (call it 3500#), then one way to stay within 5k# is go aluminum.

Tandem Axle Utility Trailers - Aluma Trailers

Pretty much comes down to throw more money at the trailer now, or upsize the truck sooner.....

To your original question.... staying within your tow limit can work, with a conventional steel trailer - but, esp. if you are not used to estimating trailer loads, it is really easy to overload (re. 5k# gross trailer wt) a 20' trailer.

You can overload any truck, but keep in mind too..... many unibody vehicles don't tolerate overloaded trailers well....

For bumper-pull, consider a weight-distributing hitch - it will be useful on your next truck too, but esp. useful on a maxed-out one. (Edit - double check your Honda specs, as some manuf will require a WDistr. hitch for the max-tow rating).

Rgds, D.
 
   #5  

vvanders

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One benefit of the lighter trailer is that if you decide to go with a F150 instead of a SuperDuty then you've got a less weight beind you and won't be dealing with a "tail wagging the dog" situation quite as much. I know when I'm towing a tractor(~6k) with our 1500 EcoDiesel the towing dynamics change a fair bit compared to the horse trailer(3.5-4.5k). Even though the newer F150s are rated for near 10k it still doesn't change the physics of a trailer+payload that's heavier than the truck.

With 5k towing limit you're not going to be hauling much compact tractor. An equipment trailer is going to be ~1.5k or more leaving you only 3.5k for a tractor. Most medium size compacts with loader or attachment are going to be pretty close to over that. Our 1500 Ford w/ flail mower was nearly 4k(1k loader, 800lb mower) even though the bare tractor is only 2k lbs. Weight tends to add up much quicker than you expect it to.
 
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   #6  

dalola

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Agree with 3930dave, invest in a quality aluminum trailer first, as you will likely have that the rest of your life. Then, upgrade the truck & toys as budget allows.

This is my R&R (from Michigan), 18' tandem, weighs 1400#'s empty. The Ridgeline is a decent tow vehicle when kept close to it's rated capacity.

IMG_0510.JPG
 
   #7  

4570Man

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I really doubt a 20 foot 7k capacity trailer is as light as a 1500 pounds and I’m guessing 2500 pounds. Does anyone have any specs?
 
   #8  

3930dave

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I really doubt a 20 foot 7k capacity trailer is as light as a 1500 pounds and I知 guessing 2500 pounds. Does anyone have any specs?

IIRC the BigTex site a while back - Steel, yes, that is a ballpark # for a commercial duty 20',

The Aluma 7820 is 1250# and grosses 7000#. (You have to go into their pdf catalog to get the gross #). You'll pay more to weigh less though. (Link in post 4).

Rgds, D.
 
  
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OP
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Tractorable

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Thanks guys, I’d likely avoid hauling the FJ40 and tractor until I bought or rented a better tow vehicle. I think with the Ridgeline towing a vehicle on a 20ft trailer would be wagging the dog. I’d stick to hauling brush, sections of trees, and fencing materials, being mindful of the 5000lb towing capacity.

Good idea about the aluminum trailer. I’ll start researching those.
 

robertsa

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One benefit of the lighter trailer is that if you decide to go with a F150 instead of a SuperDuty then you've got a less weight beind you and won't be dealing with a "tail wagging the dog" situation quite as much...Even though the newer F150s are rated for near 10k it still doesn't change the physics of a trailer+payload that's heavier than the truck.

Isn't any loaded tandem with brakes heavier than the truck, even a one ton dually? I see the statement you made repeated a lot and unless I'm misunderstanding it, it doesn't make sense. A half ton isn't all that much lighter than a one ton.

For the OP, the Ridgeline with its unibody construction and IRS is meant for hailing stuff like camping gear and maybe a small 5x10 utility trailer. A 18-20' trailer with a 10k gross rating is going to weigh ~2500lbs. Your gcwr is only ~10k, tow rating ~5k, and payload ~1500. Considering the trailer weight alone, you can't haul a couple medium duty implements, much less the tractor they're attached to.

Even knocking off half a ton of weight by going aluminum, you'll still be exceeding your tow rating.
 
 
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