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Need some guidance:

Discussion in 'Trailers' started by 1693TA, Aug 10, 2019.

  1. 1693TA

    1693TA Well-Known Member

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    Been a long while since posting but here goes with my dilemma:

    I have an older Mack tractor set up for pulling a mechanical folding neck trailer which it performed very well at in the past. I sold the trailer over 35 years ago but kept the truck. The 100K "Tulsa" winch and tail roller are still functional, but the cable should be replaced from age. The tractor has mostly been kept inside so in pretty good condition yet.

    I have recently purchased a 2006 XL mechanical detach neck trailer to keep it from being repossessed. This trailer includes a newer 3rd flip axle. I've not seen it personally, and a friend whom knows a bit about this type trailer acted as stand in for me brokering the sale. The trouble is, I don't have an air ride tractor and need to pick it up about 950 miles distant. I'm reasonably certain I could get it attached and pulled home, (it is road worthy) but I don't know how one would work to remove the neck without air ride. I've looked all over youtube and see several videos, but all have air ride tractors.

    Anybody ever ran across this type situation in the past and how to overcome? I have an older, (1979) Neway ARD-244 air ride suspension from a Mack tractor, but really don't want to swap it on the current tractor.

    Thanks for any help.
     
  2. kshansen

    kshansen Senior Member

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    I hope others with more knowledge can chime in here, but the trailers I have been around with removable necks had hydraulic systems either self contained or worked off wet line on the tractor. They could use the hydraulics to attach and detach the neck and also lift the trailer so one could block up the front of trailer to slide the fifth wheel in or out of the neck of trailer.

    By "mechanical detach neck trailer" does this mean there is no hydraulics and it depends on having a truck with air ride system to raise and lower?
     
  3. 1693TA

    1693TA Well-Known Member

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    No hydraulics needed. Here is a link for a video of a different brand trailer but similar in operation. The "XL" trailer does not have the fold down frame for supporting the neck on the tractor but rather you use timbers to support it:

     
  4. kshansen

    kshansen Senior Member

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    Problem is the OP stated he does not have air ride tractor.
     
  5. Birken Vogt

    Birken Vogt Charter Member

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    Mechanical detach are the norm out here and some of them have to be older than the days air ride was common.
     
  6. 1693TA

    1693TA Well-Known Member

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    Mechanical detach are fairly common here too as they weight considerably less and the well is longer, (usually) than the powered type necks.

    I've not seen a spring ride tractor pulling one of these however, only air ride.
     
  7. Tenwheeler

    Tenwheeler Senior Member

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    I have struggled with some of those and spring ride. With the correct 5th wheel height it is not terrible, just bad. One required having angle cut 4X4,s to back the tractor on. Then block up under the front of the trailer and pull out from under it. Then it could be backed into for hook up, no 4X4,s. Latch and back it off the blocks.
    If it is to low to get under you may have to do some jacking or get something else to pick it up.
     
  8. bam1968

    bam1968 Senior Member

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    5th wheel ramps.jpg I'm not 100% sure about this but could you do it if you had some of those steel ramps (for lack of a better word) that are mounted behind your 5th wheel plate on your frame rails. The extra long ones that extend back past the end of your frame? Just a thought.
     
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  9. crane operator

    crane operator Senior Member

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    The rolling tailboard will have to go, and you'll need ramps like bam1968 posted. The heavier the load, the more gradual / curved you would want the ramps to be.

    You may be able to add the ramps and keep the tailboard, depending how the tailboard is made, maybe angled ramps before and after the tailboard?

    I've never owned a mechanical, just helped hook and unhook them after unloading guys trucks.



    rgn frame ramps.jpg Fifth-Wheel-Parts-Unknown-8277113.jpg
     
  10. Birken Vogt

    Birken Vogt Charter Member

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    Yes, lowboy ramps they call them here. Required equipment for actually using the lowboy, not required for moving it if you can get it attached some other way.

    See the last picture, spring ride and ramps. The drivers really back up quick and hit the lowboy hard if they have a good load on. But no Honda engine to not start, no wet kit required, no extra weight of any kind on truck or trailer. Just simple stuff.
     
  11. 1693TA

    1693TA Well-Known Member

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    Last photo is kind of what I was thinking and may be able to modify/extend or change what I have existing:
    upload_2019-8-10_22-3-9.jpeg
     
  12. Shimmy1

    Shimmy1 Senior Member

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    The only problem is, up here in the North country where we get ice and snow, you either can't get out from under the dam things, or get back under after loading.
     
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  13. 1693TA

    1693TA Well-Known Member

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    I don't think getting under the trailer will be much of a problem but supporting the neck for detachment is what this issue seems to be. Seemingly, I would need to release the 5th wheel and pull forward to allow the trailer deck to set on the ground which relieves pressure on the retainers for their removal. I would then fit my timber across the rear of the truck frame, back under the neck latching the 5th wheel, and then pull forward with the neck residing upon the timber as it frees from the trailer. I'm thinking the sizing of the timber will need to be trial and error for the correct size as if too tall I wouldn't be able to reattach the trailer as the pins won't align, and too low digging into the loading area. Might be easier to rig up some type of adjustable flip down leg too depending upon the layout of the neck construction.
    The trailer has a large bale welded to the front and they used to pick it up with a chain and excavator. I assume this could be used to help get under it if need be too with the winch.
     
  14. Birken Vogt

    Birken Vogt Charter Member

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    I don't know if the ice and snow is any different in ND but I do know they use them in the rocky mountain states as well.
     
  15. RZucker

    RZucker Senior Member

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    You shouldn't need a timber if you have a sliding 5th wheel, you can back your tractor up so the neck is resting on the ramps and lock the slider before you pull away. I've pulled a few mechanicals and a long slider is your friend. I kept mine well lubed with dish soap. It's slippery and when it gets gritty you just hose it off and start over. The bail and winch would be handy if the ground is slippery or the load is heavy. More than once I backed a heavy load as far back on the trailer as I could to get the tractor back under the trailer.
     
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  16. 1693TA

    1693TA Well-Known Member

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    The 5th wheel is fixed meaning no slider. I may change it however as it is high mount and the truck is on tall 11RX24.5 rubber. The trailer has 235RX17.5 rubber and may not run level when hitched.
    I think I have a usable slider on another truck but don't know anything about it operationally.
     
  17. Mother Deuce

    Mother Deuce Senior Member

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    I knew a guy who had a Cozad in Alaska and that was his SOP, to move like a D8K all the way back so he could get under it with out beating the tractor to death.
     
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  18. 1693TA

    1693TA Well-Known Member

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    Finally got that large windows update on the computer finished. Took many hours for it to conclude. Now have photos back.

    Here is my current 5th wheel mounting:

    upload_2019-8-11_7-16-41.jpeg

    upload_2019-8-11_7-19-52.jpeg

    I took the risers, roller, and rear fenders off the truck earlier to start to cosmetically refurbish to make it look a bit better. Here it is attached to another of my former trailers:

    upload_2019-8-11_7-20-56.jpeg

    I had trouble from time to time backing under the folding neck trailer with a good load on so installed a "Detroit Locker" differential in the rear rear to eliminate wheel slippage. It works well but can be a bit brutal bobtail. I installed new "peanuts" and cam into the automatic power divider to keep the drives in sync too so overall it gets under trailers pretty well anymore.
     
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  19. bam1968

    bam1968 Senior Member

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    Heck, I forgot about your winch. Couldn't you rig up something using your winch to regulate the height of your gooseneck?
     
  20. crane operator

    crane operator Senior Member

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    I wouldn't worry about the tall 5th wheel and tall rubber. Extra ground height on the front of the trailer when loaded is never a bad thing. You could make a attachment point for your winch behind the 5th wheel (about where the neck turns down) and a "riser" with a guide, above the trailer neck for it, and use it to bring the bottom of the neck up and let it down for reattachment.
     
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