What's the easiest way to get a walk-behind aerator into a truck?

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by ostrichsak, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. ostrichsak

    ostrichsak LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    I'm planning to get my first Aerator any day now and will likely be going with a Ryan Lawnaire IV to do aerating. I'm also probably going to pick up a Tacoma or similar and am wondering what tips you guys have for getting one in and out of truck bed. What ramps have you fabricated to facilitate this process? I can see where it's going to be substantially more difficult than a mower give the size, weight and wheel arrangement so what will make my life easier?

    Thanks for the help!
  2. grandview (2006)

    grandview (2006) LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,465

  3. GreenI.A.

    GreenI.A. LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,131

    ive always just used the ramparts kits where you put the aluminum ends on a couple 2x8's. I know some people that have the ramps that replace your tailgates. those are nice as the use your existing tailgate hing points and are wider/more stable than 2x8's
  4. sweetland

    sweetland LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,441

    2x8x12s with the ramp pieces on them. leave the aerator in the up position (driving on the wheels and tines up) and then go up the ramps
  5. Deori

    Deori LawnSite Member
    Messages: 197

    Not sure if it would work for the aerator, but Harbor Freight sells some nice aluminum truck ramps for about $120. I've used them to load sod cutters into the truck, they just drive right up.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  6. Ducke

    Ducke LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 353

    Go with the wood ramps . The aerator will rip the wood to pieces We go through ramps once or twice a year. Also be very careful when loading The tines have a habit of kicking the ramps out from under you as you go up.
    load using the front drum if you can I also like to ad a couple bolts thru the top of the ramp bracket so it holds on to the tail gate.
    AppMtnMan likes this.
  7. JCLawn and more

    JCLawn and more LawnSite Fanatic
    from MI
    Messages: 5,281

    2x8x12's with 2x4 under them for support then put expanded metal over the top of the woods, a 2x4 running along the outside of the board to keep from falling off, then take a 1/4-1/2 bar bend it so it attaches to the board flat and can lay on your tailgate flat. Then take 10 0r 12 gauge rectangle and bend it so it goes on top of the metal bar so its like a deck that goes over the bar to drive on. I have pictures if you need some. I made this and it has lasted about 5 years. I used it to drive a 42inch zero turn in the back of my truck.
  8. ostrichsak

    ostrichsak LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Thanks for the posts fellas. I picked up a new Tacoma TRD (supercharged woot!) yesterday and now I'm getting ready to pick up the aerator tomorrow and get cracking.

    That 2-wheel trailer is pretty bad ass. My only concern pulling that with a truck is that someone may not see it. Maybe not as big of a deal as your car since it's a little easier to see the trailer behind it but I don't need someone running over my $3k aerator that I had to drive hours to get. It also wouldn't be much use for getting mowers in and out and such too once I start doing that. I do like it though and will continue considering it because it sure would be nice to not even worry about getting that beast in and out of a truck dozens of times every day. Edit: I just looked at your pic again.. is that just a 2-wheel dolly that you modified?

    The board idea sounds like it will be the most affordable and easiest to do on short notice. I can swing by Home Depot tomorrow and have everything I need within a matter of minutes. My only concern with these is making sure they 1) don't break under the weight of the aerator and myself (I'm a pretty stout dude) 2) They don't slip out while I'm up in the air (I could use tie downs to bumper to hold them against the gait but that would be time consuming to do every time) and 3) how difficult it would be and I guess this all depends on the length but I'm sure ideal length is no longer than the bed itself which will make for a somewhat steep angle. No problem for once or twice every now and then but to do dozens of times a day I could see it being a little more cumbersome. Maybe I'm over thinking these and maybe the beauty lies in the simplicity. I like this idea and likely will give it a try if nothing else as a temporary solution until I get something more permanent. Do you just push them together so there's no gap and then the three wheels (well, 2 & the drum) all fit on them at once?

    The idea of a gate/ramp that replaces my tailgate is actually the most appealing to me at the moment. I did a quick Google search but didn't come up with much so I obviously used the wrong search terms. Who makes these? What do they cost? I envision something that looks like the grate style you see on landscaping trailers that stands tall or maybe even folds in half when you put it up. If it stood as tall as the cab when put up and folded in half this would make for a fairly long ramp when deployed for an easier/quicker load/unload. The downsides to this would be having to swap out my tailgate, the time it takes to locate one have here to utilize and probably cost. I would imagine something like this wouldn't be the cheapest piece of equipment to buy but would probably be worth it since I'm trying to avoid pulling a trailer... for now at least. If someone can get me some more information on this type of thing or get my pointed in the right direction for me to research I would appreciate it.

    Thanks and keep 'em coming!
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2012
  9. JCLawn and more

    JCLawn and more LawnSite Fanatic
    from MI
    Messages: 5,281

    You can get a platform that goes in your hitch receiver and has a ramp on it.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  10. ostrichsak

    ostrichsak LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Do you have a link to this?

    Do they make something like this that has a folding ramp a little shorter and a little more 'aerator friendly' as that would probably be the easiest:


    Although it wouldn't solve the mower loading dilemma once I start mowing lawns. A receiver hitch ramp thingy would be best for both of these needs probably.

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