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shortening well on lowboy??

Discussion in 'Trailers' started by chris dials, Mar 13, 2020.

  1. chris dials

    chris dials Member

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    ive got a 60 ton lowboy thats got a 26 foot well....has anyone ever shortened a lowboy? can it be done? should it be done?

    done some researching and dont want to take a major loss selling this thing, and i need a 20 foot well. cant seem to find any used lowboys in this tonnage with a 20 foot well, and new they are 200k +++
    just looking for some opinions on it or if itsbeen done?
     
  2. catman13

    catman13 Senior Member

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    you may run into bridge law issues shortening it that much 60 tons.
    a picture may help get a better answer
     
  3. chris dials

    chris dials Member

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    I’ll get some pictures tomorrow.
    Most all my hauling is in the woods and that long well gets me fouled up probably 25% of the time. I’m not too concerned about bridge as far as legality on the highway. General makes a 85 ton 20 foot well trailer but needs Jeep and booster for just about any moves on highway.

    I was looking at it and it looks like it would be pretty easy to cut the front section (ramps and connection point) off where it’s welded to the beams. Cut out the 6 feet of deck and re attach and possibly add a very short sleeve. Obviously I’d have a good gab shop do the work.
     
  4. AzIron

    AzIron Senior Member

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    You would probably have a harder time getting a fab shop to do it than you think for liability reasons

    Anything is doable I think you looking at it the way it's the least impact on structure in theory the trailer should be stronger shorter but without looking at it it can be anyone's guess
     
    92U 3406 and Mother Deuce like this.
  5. 92U 3406

    92U 3406 Senior Member

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    I'm a member on another site and a few HH guys on there have had their trailer lengths increased to better suit their applications. IIRC they had it analyzed by engineers and everything was modified according to the engineered drawings.
     
  6. Nige

    Nige Senior Member

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    So long as there were engineering drawings and stress calculations made and signed off by a registered professional engineer any decent fab shop ought to have no problems doing the job. Without those calculations you’ve probably got two chances, slim & none and Slim left town a while back..... :confused::confused:
     
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  7. Truck Shop

    Truck Shop Senior Member

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    Not a big deal, If it has a detachable neck. You would revamp the front to make the well shorter, lots of metal there to work with. But personally I would go no shorter than a 22, IMO.
     
    DB2 likes this.
  8. RZucker

    RZucker Senior Member

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    Honestly, I would cut it out of the center, some fish plating and cap plates on the beams would be easier than doing the front of an RGN. Plus you can add some arch back into it.
     
    Ronsii likes this.
  9. Truck Shop

    Truck Shop Senior Member

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    I don't know it's easier to break a pencil in the center that trying to break one inch off the end. Besides who needs easy all the time.
     
    AzIron likes this.
  10. AzIron

    AzIron Senior Member

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    If your looking for easy then buy another trailer
     
  11. RZucker

    RZucker Senior Member

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    Very true, but i have shortened quite a few 40' trailers in the center by the same method.
     
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  12. Truck Shop

    Truck Shop Senior Member

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    So have I, they were outside frame trailers which makes it easy because of the depth of frame in the center. But they weren't going to be used like a lowboy either. Lowboys never get grossly
    overloaded. Just say'in
     
  13. farmerlund

    farmerlund Senior Member

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    oh boy. Two of my favorite truck experts having a debate. I have my bowl of popcorn ready. lol.:D
     
  14. RZucker

    RZucker Senior Member

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    Well, i was just sayin' too. I've seen a couple of lowboys that had a few feet added in the center using fishplates and caps on the lower flange of the beams. Whether those had an engineer's blessing i don't know. But they were still working.
     
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  15. Theweldor

    Theweldor Senior Member

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    The OP has never said what brand this trailer is. Some are easier than others.
     
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  16. RZucker

    RZucker Senior Member

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    Nah, we're just bouncing ideas back and forth. :D
     
  17. Truck Shop

    Truck Shop Senior Member

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    It really doesn't mater how hard or easy it is to convert, just as long as it works correctly and lasts and meats structural requirements. Just say'n.
     
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  18. suladas

    suladas Senior Member

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    One thing i'd consider is how long do you plan to keep it? If you plan to sell you got to consider the potential reduced resale due to cutting it apart. Even if it's done right and you got paperwork from a engineer I believe it will scare away a certain amount of buyers if they can see the work that was done. IMO a modification of cutting off the front so that no one would be able to tell would be better. I know if I was at an auction and seen a trailer welded in the middle I wouldn't even look if it was done proper, i'd be running from it too quickly.
     
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  19. terex herder

    terex herder Senior Member

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    I think when all is said and done you will be money ahead to sell your trailer as is and buy exactly what you need, or at least as close to it as you can find.
     
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  20. RZucker

    RZucker Senior Member

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    Just so happens I was contacted this morning about building a custom lowboy (fixed neck, rear load) on an existing set of rails and axles, not sure what it all looks like, but I'll get to see it this week. Shortening it up was mentioned.
    It will be handling a 721 Case loader and a D-5H dozer with a ripper.