is it possible to turn a flat bed in a dump??

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by polska, Dec 23, 2008.

  1. polska

    polska LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 383

    Hey guys I found a great deall a a Ford LCf flat bed I wanted to know if it is possible to turn it into a dump. Let me know your thoughts???
  2. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    It all depends on how strong the deck is and if its one of those cheap stamped steel pieces of crap.

    You have to have the proper depth main sills which is what the crossmembers sit on. You have no choice but use a scissor hoist you can go with a underslung hoist which is two lift cylinders on the outside of the frame like a rolloff hoist. If the deck is long something in the 14 foot range its better than a scissor

    This is the hoist

    Any flatdeck can become a dump but you will have to strengthen it up and modify it. Any welding shop can do that for you.

    A flatdeck dump is alot more versitle for a landscaper than a mason dump and alot lighter and usually its lower to the ground so its easier to load.
  3. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,910

    You can put a post hoist on it if you want. Just cut out the front where the post goes and build it in. I've done this several times when I built flatbeds and didn't have the post yet. I've never been a fan of scissor hoists.
  4. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    I'am not a fan of scissor hoists either its why I have a Del post hoist on my flatdeck. Scissor hoists power out at the first stage of lift. Look at the way they are designed they have a disadvantage from the start. There is lots of force just to get the hoist started.

    Look at it this way grab a hold of your long dinning room table in the middle and see how hard it is too lift now grab the end of the table see how easy it is to lift.

    A post hoist will out lift the truck will carry its using half the energy to dump the load.

    The under mount hoist that uses the two outside mounted cylinders is good because if your deck is long and not so strong the two hydraulic cylinders provide some stability.

    I personally don't like those flatdecks built out of formed high strength sheet metal. The deck on my truck is all built out of structural steel I built it myself the deck weighs 1600lbs atleast its 12x8. I built the deck strong for a post hoist because with a post hoist the deck will flex because you are lifting from the front at a cental point.
  5. Jason Rose

    Jason Rose LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,858

    Maybe it's a US thing, but I've *never* seen a 1.5 ton truck and smaller with anything BUT a scissor hoist under the bed... I've been around a lot of them, and they are all the same. I always thought the other kind, like Gravel Rat is describing, was reserved for large tandem axle, "for real", dump trucks (and larger).

    I'm not here to argue one over the other, just stating my observation...

    I have 2 "hoist" dumps under flatbeds personally. Never had an issue before. Everyone I know that has a dump has the same kind of hoists. Some that have standard transmisions are PTO driven but most are electric over hydraulic. (like mine).

    Ok, to the original poster... It would help to know what size of truck this is, 1/2 ton, 1 ton? I speak from experience, 1/2 and 3/4 ton trucks are generally harder to convert into a dumping flatbed because of how the frames are made (not straight). It can be done, just requires the addition of a subframe for the bed to rest on that's level, which will raise the bed height a bit. Of course the bed has to be raised anyway to make room for the hoist. On that note, the flatbed needs to have sufficient framerails to handle the hoist, but could be beefed up.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2008
  6. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,910

    Jason, lots of scissor hoists around here too. I make my own and think that posts are easier. Pretty hard to screw up a lost type when your building it. :canadaflag: This last one I was going to make a scissor but blew the motor out of my diesel so that freed up a post.
    Here pics of a couple of my flatbeds. I also have one with a dump insert in it.
  7. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    Scissor hoists are more common in the USA here with Del Hydraulics and Del truck bodies the post hoist is common here.

    I have seen scissor hoist power out. You need a oversized hoist for the capacity the truck can carry. Now you have a heavier hoist it adds allot of weight to the truck. A scissor hoist with a full subframe adds a easy 800lbs to your truck. A Post hoist like I have weighs half the weight and more power.

    Also scissor hoists add too much height to your truck deck. There has to be enough depth to make room for the hoist.

    A guy I know has a 04 F-550 4x4 with a 12 foot dump I have a 03 F-450 with a 12 foot dump. Both trucks have the exact same ride height or close to it. The F-550 has a scissor hoist and the deck is a good 4 inches maybe more higher than my deck which is a post hoist. When the deck is that high it makes it real tough to hand load the truck.

    The lowest you can make your loading height the better. Even something simple as throwing a wheelbarrow onto the deck is tough when the top of the deck is at your arm pits.
  8. Jason Rose

    Jason Rose LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,858

    Why hasn't ANYONE ever told me about post hoists for smaller trucks???

    That's what I HATE about the scissor hoist:

    Bed has to sit much higher.
    Added WEIGHT of all the sub frame needed for a 3/4 ton truck (non striaght truck frame).
    Not all that great lift capabilities.

    My Chevy 3500HD has a sicssor hoist under it, and it looks farily new... And I think it's undersized! They have the dump angle really steep with it (good) but it really sounds like it's straining to just lift the bed. I hauled some pretty large logs (6 to 8 feet long, loaded with a grapple bucket) and it REALLY strained to lift those. This truck was used for landscaping and hauling dirt and rock... The owner DID warn me to not put too much load in the front if it's not balanced to the rear because the hoist won't go. I wonder now if he wasn't thinking of the former hoist, and perhaps the new one that it has is worse? Cause why would you not go bigger if you knew the old one was lacking?

    When I did my first dump I was never even offered the choice of anything else but a scissor hoist. How much do the post hoists cost comparitavely?
  9. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    There is only one post hoist manufacturer in the USA that makes a hoist small enough for a mason dump. It is Henderson Manufacturing. Del Hydraulics does have a branch in New York.

    As for cost a post hoist is cheaper you have less moving parts. The biggest benefit is the lighter weight and more power.

    I have seen and heard of scissor hoists come apart and the hydraulic cylinder punches through the floor of the box.

    The reason why body manufactures and upfitters like using scissor hoists is they are easier to mount. A post hoist takes more work to mount and you need to build a support structure on the front of the deck for the hoist to lift from.
  10. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,910

    Jason, I ended up buying a complete truck that had a dump insert on it. I then took off the dump insert built a flatbed on the truck and sold it, I kept the insert. Then I built my own flatbed on my truck and used the parts from the rusted out insert to make it dump. Ended up a few dollars ahead and had a dump on my other chassis. You can buy the parts separately at most trailer manufacturers but they are pricy. If you have time look for a rusted out insert and do what I did.

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