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Old 07-30-2013, 09:24 PM
MGenay MGenay is offline
LawnSite Member
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Allentown, PA
Posts: 66
Rack for tailgate ramps

So I bought a dump trailer this spring (early June) and got rid of my landscape trailer. I knew and know that dump trailers are not idea for carrying mowers and I do miss my landscape gate from my previous trailer, however being a college kid I couldn't see myself parking two trailers on the street in front of my house.

That brings me to my current conundrum. I have being using two 2"x12"x6' pressure treated boards with the aluminum ends for ramps to on and off loading my mowers, running wheel barrows up, and the lift truck when off loading bushes and trees. I do have the metal ramps that came with the trailer and are stored underneath however they are far from ideal for the stuff I mentioned above and I only really use them when I rent a larger piece of equipment.

Between yards I throw the ramps into the back of the trailer on the floor and pull them out at the next job. Not really an issue, I've become rather good at lining the pins up with the holes in the floor that I drilled and I believe I can open the gates and get the ramps set up in a fairly quick amount of time, almost as fast as I could with a landscape gate. I don't like the fact that I had drilled 1/4in holes in the floor of my brand new dump trailer now that I am starting to consider other options.

While between yards it is no issue keeping the ramps on the floor in the back of the trailer, when I am switching between jobs I usually have to remove them so I can either load the trailer with debris, or use it as a true dump trailer delivering mulch or whatnot to jobs. I don't particurally enjoy carrying two of these ramps, each weighing 40 or 50lbs back and forth between the garage and the trailer each day, even worse is when I occasionally forget the ramps at home for a landscaping job. I'd like to develop a manner of storing them on the trailer.

My main issue is two fold. First, no matter if I continue to use these 2x12 ramps or buy new alluminum ones, I need to develop a rack to hold them on the inside side of the trailer (I did extend the sides up to 42in with pressured treated lumber). If I do stick with these boards for the ramps, my idea is to build a sort of J for the ramps to sit in on the side of the trailer, and build another upside down J above the lower one to hold the ramps. I figure two of these contraptions about 5ft apart should be plenty to keep the ramps from bouncing out of the racks, I would also block both ends of the ramps to keep them from sliding off the front or rear of the racks when accelerating or braking.

My plan was to cut that J shape out of a 2x6 and connect it to the wooden sides. I am worried that in a hard collision those ramps could become 40 or 50 pound spears ready to impale anything in their paths if the racks were to break.

I am here to ask if first off it is recommended that I just buy some lighter alluminum ramps, and two, no matter which ramps I do decide to use what is a safe way of storing them on the sides of the trailer. Mind you I don't want the racks to become so cumbersome they get in the way when I am trying to dump a load of brush and I have to manually pull the load off.

I'll get out some graph paper and write up my plan so you all have a better idea of the kind of rack I am talking of.
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