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Trailer Gate ???

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by GFX, Nov 8, 2004.

  1. GFX

    GFX LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Great Site!! Been lurking for a while now. :cool2:

    Here's my question(s).

    I have a 14' dump trailer that I need to make a gate for. The trailer has ramps now that work good for my Bobcat but, it would be impossible to get my new mower up them. I would also like to be able to push a wheelbarrow up it as well.

    Trailer is 25" high to the deck and I was figuring a folding 8' ramp would work ok. What would be a good material and size tubing, gauge, for this gate? I was thinking rectangular tube steel steel with expanded metal, but with steel prices the way they are aluminum might be a better bet and lighter? This gate won't have to be strong enough to handle the Bobcat. Just needs a 2000-3000lb or so rating.

    What are your guys gates made of? Would you change anything on how there made? Anybody build a folding gate like this?
  2. Metro Lawn

    Metro Lawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,114

    Is this going to be mounted to the trailer or are you looking for something portable? If portable is the plan, it may end up being to heavy to use with those kinds of weight figures.
  3. GFX

    GFX LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Yes, it will be mounted on the trailer. I was thinking of somehow having the two sections come apart so it is easy to remove and install the current gate and load the Bobcat.
  4. Metro Lawn

    Metro Lawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,114

    Would a gate interfere with using the dump?
  5. mbricker

    mbricker LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 505

    Black Cloud, here are 2 things to think about:

    First, while the aluminum would save weight, the price of steel is nothing compared to the price of aluminum. And I assume you know that you have to have different equipment to weld aluminum, so you won't find just any shop can make it for you out of aluminum. And that could run up the price.

    Second, a folding gate is needless complication, in my opinion. My deck is 16" high, and a 50" straight (flat) ramp is fine for any equipment I have ever needed to load. For your 25" trailer deck height, I would think a 60" ramp built with a slight hump in it would do the trick.

    You can check out the geometry of various ramp types by using planks and blocks to "mock up" a ramp at the rear of the trailer, and try to drive the equipment up it. Then before you have cut or welded a single piece of metal, you will know the configuration works. Do use caution that the mock-up will not come crashing down while you test it.
  6. GFX

    GFX LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    The trailer now has a 3 way gate which allows me to tip it like a truck tailgate, swing the whole door to one side or spreader option with switching a few pins. I need to set up the new gate to do two of the above functions. Tip down and swing to the side. Also the new gate will be removeable with a few pins so it shouldn't get in the way.

    I guess I pretty much know how I can mount it and so forth just need an idea on what to make it with so it's strong enough yet light enough. I was also toying with the idea of using a spring(s) to assist the lift.
  7. GFX

    GFX LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    mbrickler.....the ramps I have now are 60" long and I really don't think the Z would make it up that without bottoming out.

    Here is a picture of the gate I have now.
  8. GFX

    GFX LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Here is a pic of the 60" ramps I have now. Looks pretty steep to me???

  9. mbricker

    mbricker LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 505

    Cloud, I see what you are saying about the steep angle of the 60" ramps. I wish I had a picture of a ramp that is built with a "hump" in it rather than being made straight. I do not have that (or need it due to my trailer having a lower deck height) but I have seen it on other lco's trailers. The hump in the ramp made it possible to load mowers even though the overall length of the ramp was less than my 50" ramp.

    Maybe someone else on here can provide a pic.

    The angle where the ramp meets the trailer deck is the problem for the mower to go over without bottoming out. By making the ramp with a hump, you have 2 lesser angles for the mower to go over, instead of one bigger angle.

    I bet I'm clear as mud with this attempt at a description. Please, anyone have a picture?
  10. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    For a 25" floor height at the rear, you SURE won't need 8' ramps. Heavy duty angle or better yet square tubing would work with a nice heavy expando for your mesh. You could run two sets of square tubing (3-4) on each side of the ramp at the widths that your Bobcat tracks will be. F ew pieces of angle for the other vertical bracing, and perhaps a few cross braces. Build yourself a gatelift assist setup and you'll be all set.

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