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Old 07-13-2010, 10:39 PM   #1
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Default Using a trailer instead of a van

Anyone use a trailer instead of a service van? There seems to be many advantages, as well as disadvantages.

One advantage for me is that I would only need one vehicle. I currently have a newer F150 that I use as my everyday vehicle. Instead of buying a van and having two vehicles, I could just get a much less expensive trailer and use my F150. Having a service van as my only vehicle wouldn't work out too well for me.

I like the idea of being able to take the trailer with me when necessary, but being able to leave it at home when going into the city or on a small job. I also like the idea of leaving the trailer on the jobsite for longer jobs.

Anyone use a trailer in lieu of a service van? How do you like it?
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Old 07-13-2010, 10:40 PM   #2
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trailer works good except when theives cut it open and rip everything off
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Old 07-13-2010, 10:46 PM   #3
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I could never do that. Maybe if I had a nice three month job going on, I could park it on the job and have guys work out of that. But I do way to much resi service that I'm usually in and out in two or three days. I would hate to have to haul around a big box when I can actually drive it around without the added pickup truck.. I dont really see the benifit as your main work truck. ... I pretty much drive my van everywhere.
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Old 07-13-2010, 10:51 PM   #4
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I've fancied that thought a time or two, except with an F150.
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Old 07-13-2010, 10:52 PM   #5
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Let me know how it is to turn it around in a narrow 1/2 mile long driveway.
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Old 07-13-2010, 10:53 PM   #6
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Quote:
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I pretty much drive my van everywhere.
You married? Your wife have a car that you take out to dinner, etc?
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:09 PM   #7
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We use trailers for field service, here are some photos
http://photos.gcbsinventory.com/trailers/
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:10 PM   #8
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yes my wife has a car and I have one that sits in the driveway now...
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
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yes my wife has a car and I have one that sits in the driveway now...
When you met your wife, did you pick her up on your first date in your service van?
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:58 PM   #10
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When I met her I was a cook. She was a waitress.
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:14 AM   #11
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I have a 6x12 enclosed trailer with crapper, satellite tv and a bed. I have yet to need to leave it on a site, but it is nice to use to set up a job and pull out of a job.
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:15 AM   #12
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Cons:
Extra vehicle, so more $$$ for license, insurance, etc.

Unless you're gonna leave hitched up all the time, you'll be backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward,then finally you can mate the hitch together, hook up the safety chains, connect the electrical, crank the 3rd leg up, then drive it to the job.

If you want to park it on the job, you'll end up backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward until you get it where you want it. Get out, crank the 3rd leg up, undo the electrical and the chains, then drive off.

Don't wanna leave it there for the night? Then you'll be backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward,then finally you can mate the hitch together, hook up the safety chains, connect the electrical, crank the 3rd leg up, then drive it home.

Get up tomorrow, and do it all over again.






Oh, I forgot to mention.............. it's raining like hell and it's colder 'n chit.
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:16 AM   #13
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A trailer can be a great addition to your setup. I have a nicely equipped one myself. Not too big, 7'x14' V-nose.

NO WAY I'd make it my main source though. No way in hell.
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:20 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 480sparky View Post
Cons:
Extra vehicle, so more $$$ for license, insurance, etc.
I wouldn't use a service van as my non-work daily driver so I would need 2 vehicles anyway. Having a trailer as a second vehicle would be cheaper than a service van.
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Unless you're gonna leave hitched up all the time, you'll be backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward, backing up, pulling forward,then finally you can mate the hitch together,
My truck already has a rear backup camera. I can hook up a trailer in one shot. All that backing up and pulling forward that you wrote out is long gone. If you are going to be using a trailer, get a camera, wireless systems are as low as $95 at Walmart.

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Oh, I forgot to mention.............. it's raining like hell and it's colder 'n chit.
I'm not following...
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:23 AM   #15
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Quote:
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.........I'm not following...
So it's always sunny and 65° when you hitch up?
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:25 AM   #16
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It is worth every penny having a work truck and separate "personal" vehicle.
Write both off either way. The van is for daily work, the P/U is for hauling, dump runs, large pick up and delivery (generators, etc), estimates and so on.

With two trucks my accountant says I am fine with the "allowed" usage and both are completely justified for my business.
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:25 AM   #17
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Our residential guys keep a trailer, works out great for them. They have everything they need all the time for rough in. They go to one 2 different site tops in a busy day. Plus our supply house is on the way to the shop, sometimes we leave with them and let them stock it up on busy weeks.

I would never recommend pulling one around for service work tho. Its over kill. I can think of more con's then pro's.
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:35 AM   #18
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Quote:
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So it's always sunny and 65° when you hitch up?
I didn't understand your reference.

But no, it's not always sunny and 65 anywhere, but hitching up is the easiest part of the job. I don't stay home when it's rainy outside.
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:37 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
It is worth every penny having a work truck and separate "personal" vehicle.
Write both off either way. The van is for daily work, the P/U is for hauling, dump runs, large pick up and delivery (generators, etc), estimates and so on.

With two trucks my accountant says I am fine with the "allowed" usage and both are completely justified for my business.
That makes sense, I'll probably end up going that route. I like those smaller uHaul lowrider box trucks.
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Old 07-14-2010, 04:28 AM   #20
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I have a trailer but not used very often { it is convertable from box trailer to flatbed trailer or other way around. } but I have three truck in fleet that is more than enough in most case.

Merci.
Marc
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