Trailer question....dovetail or not?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by walker-talker, Aug 13, 2002.

  1. walker-talker

    walker-talker LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 4,771

    I am currently in the market for a new trailer. I have been looking around and found one that I like. I can get a 16ft or one with 14ft flat and a 2ft dove tail for $30 more. I was wondering how many LCO's use a trailer with a dovetail and what are the pro's and con's? Normally in the spring and fall when I have to haul my dethatcher and aerator around, I usually park these 2 item up against the ramp and park my Walker directly behind them to keep them from rolling around and this works well. I was just wondering if I will still be able to use this method without having the gate rubbing the engines or something. BTW, the trailer comes with a 4" gate, so having a 2ft dovetail would like be using a 6ft gate.

    All replies appreciated.
  2. AGG Lawn Maintenance

    AGG Lawn Maintenance LawnSite Senior Member
    from Elberon
    Posts: 422

    Man I haven't seen a dove tail in years. Most guys are getting enclosed trails. I run open 6 1/2 by 16 foot trailers. I can fit a rider (Hustler) two 48" walkbehinds and an edger on it. I never had a dove tail but I would wonder if it would tend to scarp more on the dips in the road. Travis
  3. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    I use to favor the dovetails for the loading purposes, but learned that with the right gate setup, it isn't necessary anyway. With the dovetail, it's like you lose a few feet of hauling space. Oh, sure, you can still utilize it, but you have this equipment that is sliding down and wanting to go into the gate. I just prefer the flat myself.
  4. walker-talker

    walker-talker LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 4,771

    From the search I have done here and the pics that I have seen, I have not seen many, if any, using a dovetail. I am really leaning towards the "no dovetail" trailer. I am seeing the "pros" out weighing the "cons" of a non-dovetail trailer.

  5. gravedigger5

    gravedigger5 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 505

    I built my own trailer w/dovetail last winter. Its 14' x 6' (wish it was 6.5') 12' flat and 2' dovetail w/4' gate. don't have any problems with it dragging except maybe if you drove through a ditch. The transition from gate to trailer floor is great, never have had anything hang up on it. I've parked walk-behinds sideways over the d-tail and also loaded them or my ztr backwards and parked them up against the gate without any problems. It is probably your own preference, but I really like mine. $30 is not much but I would not pay alot extra for this option. Marc

    Are we Having fun Yet???:cool:
  6. TurfGuyTX

    TurfGuyTX LawnSite Senior Member
    from DFW
    Posts: 648

    My experience with both, I'd go with flat. There are too many times you can drag without expecting it. That extra two feet on the dovetail isn't intended for carrying regular loads and most times would probably be dead space. Just my opinion.
  7. walker-talker

    walker-talker LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 4,771

    Thanks Turf guy and the rest of you. I went back to the trailer dealer and talked with him some more. I told him that I would give him an answer in the morning. I started to consider going from a 16ft flat to a 16ft flat with 2ft dovetail (would be an additional $80, with tax). As stated above, I also thinking that the dovetail would be wasted space and I don't have a problem with equipment scraping on just and flat trailer and a 4ft gate.

    Thanks again for the comments and opinions.
  8. m&m

    m&m LawnSite Member
    Posts: 169

    they also can make a trailer that is set up like a dove tail but u can actually raise the dove tail up and make that area flat like the rest of the trailer.....something to think about
  9. walker-talker

    walker-talker LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 4,771

    Yea, I have seen those. Someone on here built their's sweet!!!

    I went with the 16ft flat and no dovetail. I really use the flat part of the deck right up to the gate, to hold other equipment from rolling around, so I just thought it was a good decision. Not to mention that I saved $80 not getting the dovetail. Thanks to all.


    SCAPEASAURUSREX LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 835

    The Beaver tail or Dove tail is more for longer lower objects such as cars.. All car trailers have them.. I have it on my enclosed trailer. IF it is made correctly you wont even notice it.. Never had a problem scraping the ground, I think the whole trailer is a bit higher to compensate for it.. For lawn maint equip you dont need it unless your ramp is toooo short. Go with a good reputable brand trailer or professionally built custom trailer and youll be good to go either way.. But Like I said the beaver tails are designed for cars cause of their long length and low ground clearance they will catch the end of the floor with out it..

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