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Top talkSteel vs. aluminum cattle trailers

Agriculture.com Staff 07/06/2010 @ 5:03pm

In the Cattle Talk discussion group, organic dairy is looking to replace his cattle trailer. He questions which is a better investment -- steel or aluminum.

Posted by organic dairy: I need to replace my old trailer. I haul cows 60 miles once or twice a month. The rest is short hauls, pasture hauling, and the like. I've priced a new 20-foot gooseneck steel trailer, and it's around $7,000. A 10- to 15-year-old aluminum trailer (the same size) is about the same money. A new one is about twice that much. Is aluminum worth the extra money?

Posted by GoredHusker: Steel will flex better than aluminum; aluminum tends to crack. If you're going to be using the trailer for mostly highway and pulling a lot, then buy aluminum. If you're pulling in and out of pastures where there's a lot of flexing of the trailer, buy steel. Guys in my area have had problems with rivets coming out and cracking issues. Most who own aluminum trade every three years.

Posted by dirtdt: I run a steel trailer with a rubber floor and galvanized insides, and I really like it. Some things to consider when you buy are how many loads of cattle you'll be hauling and if you'll be on gravel a lot in the winter. Steel trailers with uprights exposed can quickly chip and rust. With that being said, steel trailers will last a long time if you keep them clean.

Aluminum trailers are noisy to load and can spook cattle. However, aluminum is like an investment. The floors have traction even after a couple loads, and you don't have to clean them out as much. It really boils down to how much money you want to park in a trailer that might sit most of the time.

In the Cattle Talk discussion group, organic dairy is looking to replace his cattle trailer. He questions which is a better investment -- steel or aluminum.

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