ATV Adventures: Product review — PJ Trailers a great lighter-weight hauling option
I have a trailer, and I love a good trailer. The world has known the value of trailers for as long as we have had something with which to pull them. In the early days, it was a variety of animals. During pioneer days, even people pulled handcart wagons.
When I bought my first ATV in 1993, I needed a trailer. Not wanting to go alone, I bought a trailer with a 5-by-12-foot bed that could haul two ATVs.
That plan lasted for seven years until I thought that if I had a bigger trailer, I could carry more machines. That meant that I could save money on gas by splitting the cost of gas more ways. So, I bought a trailer with an 8-by-16-foot bed that held four ATVs.
That plan lasted for 14 years until I thought that if I could get a bigger trailer, I could haul six ATVs and save even more money on gas. So, I sold that trailer and I bought a trailer with an 8-by-22-foot bed with wheels under the deck.
That plan worked until ATVs started getting bigger. The standard width for an ATV is 48 inches and six machines with those dimensions fit fine. Bigger tires make for a better ride, but they increase the width of the quad just enough to defeat the need for the bigger trailer. I could only load three ATVs. There could have been a flaw in my bigger thinking.
In 2008, I bought my first side-by-side and then pretty soon I wasn’t riding ATVs anymore at all. My big trailer could haul two UTVs, but it weighed 4,500 pounds. So, then I thought that if I can only haul two UTVs, I could do better with a lighter trailer with wheels to the side, which would lower the height of the bed for easier loading.
Last year, Jake Porter at Wasatch Trailer Sales let me take a 7-by-14-foot trailer made by JP Trailers to test and review. The most impressive feature on this trailer was the Blackwood Rubber Infused Lumber used for the deck.
Rubber is infused to the entire top of each treated piece of lumber, solving some age-old problems with trailer decks. The rubber has a rough surface to prevent slippage, especially in wet weather. This deck requires much less maintenance than a wood deck and will last for a long time.
I went back to Jake to see what kind of deal I could work out on a 7-by-22-foot trailer with the Blackwood decking. Trailers are expensive, but they hold their value better than other types of purchases I have made. When I sold my big trailer after 10 years of service, I recovered 75% of the purchase price.
In putting this trailer together, I wanted the Blackwood deck and the 4-foot spring-loaded gate on the back for loading. My old trailer had twin steel ramps loaded under the deck that had to be pulled out and set in place before loading the machines.
The fenders were aluminum, but I opted for steel fenders. The twin 3,500-pound Dexter axles come with electric brakes and feature five-leaf Double-Eye Suspension. I opted for a heavier-duty radial tire (225/75 R15). The spare tire is mounted on the side instead of underneath the trailer, which is a plus. The trailer has an all-weather wiring harness and Flushmount Lifetime LED lights.
Jake helped me with the changes I wanted, which meant that my PJ Trailer had to be built. Even though I have 30 years’ experience with pulling trailers, with the suggestions he made, I came out with a better trailer.
When it came, I set out for a test run to Brigham City. The first thing I noticed was the number of points this trailer has to secure a load. Every post has multiple holes for strap hooks.
I loaded my RZR XP 1000, centered it over the axles and tied it down with Shock Straps. It pulled like a dream. Because there were no loose ramps rattling and the loading gate was secure, the trailer with my RZR felt solid. I enjoyed the fact that this trailer is 2,600 pounds lighter than my old trailer.
When you go, take plenty of water, keep the rubber side down and when you need a trailer, talk to the people at Wasatch Trailer Sales. They have access to trailers to fit every need.
Contact Lynn R. Blamires at email@example.com.