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Towing empty trailer

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This may sound silly, but I have never towed an empty trailer. They have always had a good amount of weight on them.

My question is, will it behave any differently? Since it will have no weight on it I'm more worried about it bouncing around and causing problems. Is there anything in particular to watch for? I will not exceed 65mph, as that’s my gas mileage sweet spot. Not to mention the fact that I have little faith in the tires on this trailer (They are getting old)

It is a flat bed trailer with two axles, maybe ~25ft long, no brakes. Built in the 60’s :)

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With two axles it should have plenty of weight to keep it on the ground. Used to pull an empty 5X10 ATV trailer with 13" wheels around empty with no problems. Would always check the floor mounting screws before the next trip as for they would sometimes rattle loose.

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What are you towing it with?

Uni-Body SUV it is going to loud and bouncy......evey time the trailer bounces the hitch goes up and down......Then you get a loud CLUNK CLUNK......It gets old very quick

Full size truck.....just bouncy

Put 3 or 4 sand bags on the front and go

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What are you towing it with?

My baby :)

IMG_7778.jpg

I'm sure it will handle it just fine. We may have a couch sitting on it after all, so that should weigh it down a bit. But now that I think about it, that is one heavy trailer. I think like LeadDoggy pointed out, it will be heavy enough not to bounce everywhere on me. Maybe a bit, but nothing major.

I assume that the empty trailer will be more steady under hard braking since its not trying to push the truck?

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This may sound silly, but I have never towed an empty trailer. They have always had a good amount of weight on them.

My question is, will it behave any differently? Since it will have no weight on it I'm more worried about it bouncing around and causing problems. Is there anything in particular to watch for? I will not exceed 65mph, as that’s my gas mileage sweet spot. Not to mention the fact that I have little faith in the tires on this trailer (They are getting old)

It is a flat bed trailer with two axles, maybe ~25ft long, no brakes. Built in the 60’s :)

If you plan on keeping and using this trailer, you may want to install some brakes on it-Texas law requires brakes on trailer of 4,500 lbs gross vehicle weight RATING, not what it weighs.

It's rarer than a bigfoot sighting in Macy's to find a tandem trailer that is rated less than 4500 lbs.

You'll be just fine towing it home empty as far as getting beaten up-I bet that thing weighs in quite heavy.

http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/lw/cmvlaw/Misc/brakes.asp

Brakes Required

A motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer, pole trailer, or combination of those vehicles shall be equipped with brakes.

A trailer, semitrailer, or pole trailer is not required to have brakes if:

(1) its gross weight is 4,500 pounds or less; or

(2) its gross weight is heavier than 4,500 pounds but not heavier than 15,000 pounds, and it is drawn at a speed of not more than 30 miles per hour.

Each power unit must be equipped with a parking brake

A motor vehicle used to tow a trailer, semitrailer, or pole trailer equipped with brakes shall be equipped with service brakes arranged so that, in case of a breakaway of the towed vehicle, the towing vehicle is capable of stopping by use of its service brakes

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With as often as this trailer gets used, I doubt I will ever talk my dad into putting brakes on it. It was built when he was in diapers (grandfather built it), and I have no clue what its rated to. We put new axles on it a few years ago, but it still has the original deck. It was probably designed for much more than 4500lbs because its pretty beefy.

While I agree it probably should have brakes on there to be legal, I don't see that convincing the old man to shell out money for a trailer that spends 364.75 days of the year rusting :D It never hauls anything other than small loads of furniture these days. We have a decent trailer for real loads, its just out of state at the moment.

I will just have to keep it under 30 when ferrying furniture from storage to our apartment (less than a mile) :)

Thanks for the help! A rebuild of this trailer is on the "to do list" and I will let him know we need brakes. You know how projects go... things keep butting in at the front of the line. I think the trailer is in front of his 66 mustang though. That thing has been sitting in a storage building for 20 years now. I'm the oldest kid at 20... coincidence?

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With as often as this trailer gets used, I doubt I will ever talk my dad into putting brakes on it. It was built when he was in diapers (grandfather built it), and I have no clue what its rated to. We put new axles on it a few years ago, but it still has the original deck. It was probably designed for much more than 4500lbs because its pretty beefy.

While I agree it probably should have brakes on there to be legal, I don't see that convincing the old man to shell out money for a trailer that spends 364.75 days of the year rusting :D It never hauls anything other than small loads of furniture these days. We have a decent trailer for real loads, its just out of state at the moment.

I will just have to keep it under 30 when ferrying furniture from storage to our apartment (less than a mile) :)

Thanks for the help! A rebuild of this trailer is on the "to do list" and I will let him know we need brakes. You know how projects go... things keep butting in at the front of the line. I think the trailer is in front of his 66 mustang though. That thing has been sitting in a storage building for 20 years now. I'm the oldest kid at 20... coincidence?

They missed the perfect opportunity to upgrade to brakes when it got the new axles!

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The normal rule of thumb is that the tongue weight should be between 10 and 15 percent of the weight of the loaded trailer.

Running empty the tongue might be a little light. Add some sandbags. If the tongue is too light then the risk of sway will increase.

Here is how I adjsut the tongue weight on my ATV trailer. Loaded traielr weighs about 2,100 pounds. 10 percent is 210. I weigh 210.

So I stand on the trailer hitch and measure the sag. Then I adjust ATV and cargo positions so I get the same sag.

If I were to lose waight I don't know what I would do.:)

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My baby :D

IMG_7778.jpg

I'm sure it will handle it just fine. We may have a couch sitting on it after all, so that should weigh it down a bit. But now that I think about it, that is one heavy trailer. I think like LeadDoggy pointed out, it will be heavy enough not to bounce everywhere on me. Maybe a bit, but nothing major.

I assume that the empty trailer will be more steady under hard braking since its not trying to push the truck?

That will work...... :)

Two weeks ago I towed a 20' empty flat bed with my our SUV 250 miles to pick up my VW Thing.......After about 10 miles on the freeway I was done and looking for a construction site for sand bags......On the way home with the car on the trailer no problems.......hammer down

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This may sound silly, but I have never towed an empty trailer.

My truck doesnt know if my trailer is full or empty. :)

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