Cube Vans vs. Trailers

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Vibe Ray, Dec 7, 2000.

  1. Vibe Ray

    Vibe Ray LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 785

    I am thinking about getting a cube van instead of a truck and trailer combo. What are all the pros and cons to using each of them for Landscaping/Lawn Maintenance??? Any types that i should look for(special features)in a cube van???
  2. accuratelawn

    accuratelawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 922

    I am considering this also. Plus side - equipment and fert. out of the weather. Rolling billboard. Everything on hand. Work area to fix equipment. No trailer to maintain. Easier to drive.
    Negatives - hard to load with landscape materials, grass clipping/leaves etc. Climbing up into the truck for hand tools etc.
    I'm sure there is more.
  3. cat320

    cat320 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 822

    Guys this only works very good if you have another truck and or a big crew that you need to have just a tool truck.I would not use a cube van for putting leafs and grass into it this is good for just tools and fertilizer would be hard to be putting a 48" scagg into it every day.
  4. Vibe Ray

    Vibe Ray LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 785

    It wouldn't be too hard with a long ramp?!
  5. Acute Cut

    Acute Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 980

    I have been thinking about this alot lately. I checked out I talked to a guy there named Billy Bass. no joke. (HEAVY SOUTHERN ACCENT)

    They sell the cube trucks with a good ramp system. Hydralic i believe. They are currently working on a "grass hauling" solution. I proposed makeing the front 4 or 5 ft into a bin. Then haveing each side of the cube open up. then we could dump from either side. The only real problem i see is wet grass and having to track through all your other loaded equipment to get to it.

    You are also looking at about 40K for truck and all accessories. Very cool truck though.

    Another thought, theses trucks are long. Corners are going to be kind of different. You will have to go extra wide. Will employees be able to handle it? What about stopping? I had an employee last year that was a tailgater. Drove me nuts. Needless to say, he did not drive alot.

    Pro's---> This truck has extra tanks just for our lawn care fuels. I think the mixed fuel tank is like 14 gallons. And the other one is 30 i think. Then it has two tanks of its own to run off of. That would save me a ton of time at the pump.

    Well, let me know. This grass hauling is my major dilema so far from getting one. I HAVE TO have that option. If yall think of a better bin system for the truck or something let me know. I would be interested.

    Have a good one yall
    Acute Cut
  6. Vibe Ray

    Vibe Ray LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 785

    Anyone else thinking about this route?
  7. Island Lawn

    Island Lawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 632

    Working for myself, by myself, I am very happy with my tiny Aerostar utility van. The big sell for me was that it keeps everything out of the weather (inc. 21" push mower). I use a 5x8 utility trailer when I need the exta space and/or haul debris.
    Between now and spring, I intend to upgrade to a wb.
    I found this site just a couple of days ago. 'Yall sure are informative and inspiring.

  8. cutntrim

    cutntrim LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 474

    For maintenance, I think a better option is a covered trailer pulled by a pickup. A cube van is a good fit for irrigation or pool companies.
  9. HOMER

    HOMER LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,183

    This is my opinion, I know, everybody has one and they all ............anyway, I couldn't see investing that much into a dedicated truck that you couldn't use for other purposes. My next move will probably be to an enclosed trailer, I can still unhook from it and use my truck for other purposes. The biggest thing I might consider, and I know I'm contradicting myself here, would be an NPR type truck. They look like the would be much easier to maneuver in and around traffic than the "Super Lawn Truck". With an enclosed trailer you still have everything out of the weather, still have the billboard, and from what I've read on here..........a good place to take a leak!!!!!! I'm looking at 2 right now, both are 24' car haulers in excellent shape. I can get either one for between 5 & 6 grand. $40,000.00 would buy at least 6 trailers. It would also buy a lot of open trailers and more mowers if you wanted to expand your business. That truck would be irritating sitting in the yard most of the winter knowing that the payment was due at the first of the month.

    Again, this is just my opinion.

  10. SLSNursery

    SLSNursery LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 442

    I have posted about this before, and will hi-lite some points here. This past June we bought an Isuzu NQR with a van body to add to the conventional (F-series and trailers) trucks in our fleet. With 9' aluminum ramps its not a big deal to load walk behinds. The truck is awesome in and out of the city, and we use it every day. In addition, because it is totally enclosed, there are a number of other uses for it which make it worthwhile. I talked to Tony Bass about the Super Lawn Trucks this fall in Indianapolis (GIC). He puts a van body on an Isuzu chassis, with a pretty cool Hydraulic ramp that takes the place of the roll-up door at the rear of the truck. IMHO, He too found the enclosed truck to be a good system, that's why he invests so much time selling them.

    Ours is an NQR which has more capacity than an NPR. 4 cylinder diesel can't be beat. Auto Trans, tight turning radius makes it easy to drive. The 16 foot body is long, but handy for deliveries, or putting a couple of spray tanks in, or 4 pallets, etc. Sometimes we fill up the truck with nursery stock for deliveries or jobs. Really I have nothing but praise for the truck and your idea. With a few modifications to a simple van body, like a permanent ramp installation, or two custom ramps, some vents, and maybe a couple cabinets, this would make a perfect truck for a full service small operation, or an add on to an existing program. In addition, you wouldn't ever need to unload it if you dedicated it to one type of job. I have a friend who uses an old cube van every day for mowing and maintenance. The only problem is its older, and a gas job. Other than that, its like he has a shed full of tools with him at all times.

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