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Has anyone had troubles with tailgate ramp on their aluminum ATC trailer? On my round trip from Dayton to Las Vegas, while running through the desert in Utah, every single bolt holding the ramp in place fell out. Granted.... the roads out there are as rough or worse than Michigan roads (Oklahoma City was especially BAD), but it seems that threading bolts into the aluminum box frame cross-member is not a good permanent way to do it. No nuts. A good friend admitted he had the exact same thing happen to his ATC, so I'm wondering how common this is????

 

This trailer is only a few years old, as was my friend's.

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Wow!  That is an inexcusable failure.  It is very surprising that they relied on threads in the aluminum crossmember.  My trailers are steel Haulmark trailers but of otherwise similar construction.  I’ll now be crawling under both trailers to see how the ramp door is attached.  

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For the price of them Atcs you would think you would never have a problem. I appreciate this information thought my next one would be the Atc . But think I will stick with Haulmark ,Carmate or Pace.at a better price also.

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I assume you are not going

to the manufacturer for

warranty service ?

 

Then you need to find a good 

“ meat & potatoes “ welder 

to fabricate a sturdy means

of attaching the ramp door

to the frame.

 

My primary welder is in the 

countryside near Iowa City, IA

and primarily works on farm

equipment.

 

Jim

Edited by Trulyvintage (see edit history)
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Not too many trailers are decent anymore regardless of price. Every new trailer I buy we usually go over them and make reinforcements. My new trailer had the hinge brake in the first 2k miles on the rear ramp door. Called them to complain, said they had no issues. The replacement hinge they sent was three times larger and heavier..........so obviously a major problem that they didn't want to stand behind.  I replaced them all..........seems every crack head early release prisioner is working at the trailer fabrication shops now........the welding on most trailers is terrible. Just take a look for yourself. Went to look at a new trailer yesterday. I am now buying a 14k open trailer for my cars because the five lug "normal" trailers can't safely move any car over 5500 pounds. I would not recommend ANY car hauling trailer with five lug wheels.......even the triple axel jobs. All my new equipment is 8 lug triple axle. 

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27 minutes ago, edinmass said:

 

Not too many trailers are decent anymore regardless of price. Every new trailer I buy we usually go over them and make reinforcements. My new trailer had the hinge brake in the first 2k miles on the rear ramp door. Called them to complain, said they had no issues. The replacement hinge they sent was three times larger and heavier..........so obviously a major problem that they didn't want to stand behind.  I replaced them all..........seems every crack head early release prisioner is working at the trailer fabrication shops now........the welding on most trailers is terrible. Just take a look for yourself. Went to look at a new trailer yesterday. I am now buying a 14k open trailer for my cars because the five lug "normal" trailers can't safely move any car over 5500 pounds. I would not recommend ANY car hauling trailer with five lug wheels.......even the triple axel jobs. All my new equipment is 8 lug triple axle. 

 

That's why I spend so much time taking care of my 45-year-old trailer with 8-lug 16.5-inch wheels. Built like a brick shithouse. Not easy to get 16.5-inch tires anymore, tho.

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1 hour ago, West Peterson said:

The trailer is not mine. I was towing for a friend. We fixed the problem by drilling all the way through the two boxed cross-members and installed grade 8 (IIRC) bolts with lock nuts. 

 

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Is that an OSB floor?!

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When I saw the OSB I thought what a piece of junk........sorry, it's just me thinking out loud. 

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That's really crazy. Fortunately, there wasn't a car on it when it happened.

 

I have an ATC trailer (bought from the same dealer), and will look at the bolts next time I go to the storage place.

 

By chance, is the trailer a '20 or '21? The RV industry calls trailers built during those years "Covid Trailers" because the pandemic caused some serious quality problems. They faced a huge increase in demand while there was also a labor shortage. Since ATC is in Indiana near most of the world's RV plants, I'd bet it impacted them too.

 

One last thought. Is it possible someone tried to break-in to the trailer by removing the bolts? Having all the bolts back out seems inconceivable. 

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10 hours ago, CarNucopia said:

That's really crazy. Fortunately, there wasn't a car on it when it happened.

 

I have an ATC trailer (bought from the same dealer), and will look at the bolts next time I go to the storage place.

 

By chance, is the trailer a '20 or '21? The RV industry calls trailers built during those years "Covid Trailers" because the pandemic caused some serious quality problems. They faced a huge increase in demand while there was also a labor shortage. Since ATC is in Indiana near most of the world's RV plants, I'd bet it impacted them too.

 

One last thought. Is it possible someone tried to break-in to the trailer by removing the bolts? Having all the bolts back out seems inconceivable. 

  My thoughts as well.  I can't  see this happening spontaneously.

 

  Ben

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I bought a Diamond Cargo new in 2018. It was really cheap to buy, and well, it's really cheaply made. I custom ordered it and it was $6800, 24' long and extra tall. Within the first year I replaced the tongue jack, roof vent, complete side door and an axle, all of which failed. The axle and door were replaced under warranty (I had to supply the labor). 

The ATC is supposedly a high-end trailer and I believe they cost about three times the price of mine. I was eyeing either an ATC or an InTech for my next trailer, but I guess I'll have to closely examine them when I'm ready. It seems like everything is junk. I really regret selling my C&C, nobody seems to make anything equal to it. I hope to get another 10 years out of the Diamond Cargo.

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I would be willing to bet they put the hinge together with some self tapping screws.

As for an osb deck, depending on the product used it may be leaps and bounds better than plywood. For an open trailer I prefer plain old rough sawn oak, but that is overkill on an enclosed job.

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3 hours ago, TAKerry said:

I would be willing to bet they put the hinge together with some self tapping screws.

As for an osb deck, depending on the product used it may be leaps and bounds better than plywood. For an open trailer I prefer plain old rough sawn oak, but that is overkill on an enclosed job.

I was thinking the same thing, and since I own one of these, I checked the manual. They use a board called AdvanTech, which the supplier claims is better than plywood. Below is a page from their brochure.

 

 

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4 hours ago, CarNucopia said:

I was thinking the same thing, and since I own one of these, I checked the manual. They use a board called AdvanTech, which the supplier claims is better than plywood. Below is a page from their brochure.

 

 

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That's good to know. The plywood floor in my trailer is terrible.

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Advantech  is great stuff…..used it on my home 25 years ago……..OSB is not good stuff. 

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I have had good luck with my Featherlite trailer, 24' with 6000 lbs 8 lug axles and aluminum floor, 2010.  The Dexter axel's cracked where they bolted to the frame after about 10 years but I caught it and had them repaired and reinforced other than that it has held up well with maybe about 75,000 miles on it.

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What are the opinions on using nuts with lock washers  vs  nuts with nylon inserts. 

Also on a trailer like this one the fastners are low and will catch a lot of road dabris...

I would probably go with stainless....... I buy stainless fastners online in bulk and they are 

fairly cheap. 

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On 1/27/2024 at 2:11 PM, CarNucopia said:

I took a look at my trailer today and learned the hinges are welded. It’s a “Raven” model, though they changed their naming scheme at some point after I bought it in September of 2019.

 

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Interesting. I saw some brand new trailers on the dealer's lot, and they all had the bolted hinges. Only the steel and non-ATC trailers had welded hinges.

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On 1/23/2024 at 11:48 AM, West Peterson said:

Has anyone had troubles with tailgate ramp on their aluminum ATC trailer? On my round trip from Dayton to Las Vegas, while running through the desert in Utah, every single bolt holding the ramp in place fell out. Granted.... the roads out there are as rough or worse than Michigan roads (Oklahoma City was especially BAD), but it seems that threading bolts into the aluminum box frame cross-member is not a good permanent way to do it. No nuts. A good friend admitted he had the exact same thing happen to his ATC, so I'm wondering how common this is????

 

This trailer is only a few years old, as was my friend's.

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😐😕😵‍💫😵Ouch! That is pretty sad in my opinion. My 2008 Haulmark has been good considering it's age. I do have to do some rebuilding of the side door soon as it has some bad spots on the bottom. The metal is fine but some of the wood has gone bad. inside. I'm going to hang on to it as long as I can.

Edited by Dandy Dave (see edit history)
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On 1/27/2024 at 10:20 AM, Barney Eaton said:

What are the opinions on using nuts with lock washers  vs  nuts with nylon inserts. 

Also on a trailer like this one the fastners are low and will catch a lot of road dabris...

I would probably go with stainless....... I buy stainless fastners online in bulk and they are 

fairly cheap. 

NASA did some thorough study of fasteners and the benefits of lock washers. The conclusion: lock washers provide no benefit. Split ring, internal and/or external, etc. If anyone is interested in that study report, PM me and I will send it. 
it certainly surprised me. 

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16 hours ago, tcslr said:

NASA did some thorough study of fasteners and the benefits of lock washers. The conclusion: lock washers provide no benefit. Split ring, internal and/or external, etc. If anyone is interested in that study report, PM me and I will send it. 
it certainly surprised me. 

 

I have read the report and also seen some of the videos on the subject.  Eye opening research, but I still use the with the correct torque when putting stuff together.

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On 1/23/2024 at 4:57 PM, edinmass said:

When I saw the OSB I thought what a piece of junk........sorry, it's just me thinking out loud. 

Almost every car trailer I looked at had OSB floors in it, and the cheapest one that I saw was about $16,000.

 

I went to the Syracuse Nationals looking to buy a new car trailer three years ago and due to COVID, there wasn't ANYONE there that had trailers to sell, but the one trailer that I fell in love with was an ATC.

 

So when I got home I looked for the nearest ATC Dealer and it turned out to be Davis Trailer World.  

 

As it turned out this is what I found:

 

1.  Hallmark, US Cargo and all of the steel trailers are all made by the same manufacturer.  The frames are all welded up at the same place by the same company, and then the frames leave the factory and go to their respective facilities to have Hallmark, US Cargo, etc. put their tin and names on the trailers.

 

2.  ATC and Featherlite are their own companies.

 

3.  I went in to order an ATC, the dealer who sells ATC also sells Featherlite.  He asked me is he could get me a quote for the Featherlite, and the Featherlite came in $3,000 cheaper and had a 10 year warranty instead of five.  

 

4.  At the time Featherlite would lock in at the price quoted, ATC would not.  In other words, if the price went up on the trailer before it arrived at the dealer, Featherlite wasn't going to raise the price, ATC would've charged me whatever it was.

 

5.  When my new trailer came in there was an ATC on the lot just like it, when I looked at the latches, workmaship, etc. there was not comparison.

 

As for tie downs, I wanted the fast track tie downs and I was told by the dealer to go with the airline track tiedowns instead.  He told me that anchoring the fast track tiedowns would be a dissimilar metal that would corrode my trailer, where the airline track is aluminum on aluminum and is stronger.  Truth be told I LOVE IT!!

 

I shelled out a lot of cash for the trailer, but in hindsight, it should last me as long as I plan on going to meets, and the trailer is exactly the way I wanted it.  

 

If you're going to do it once, bite the bullet and do it right.  If not, buy used until you can afford to do it right.

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I bought a 2017 ATC Raven from a club member, it has welded hinges , so no loose bolt problems, but it had some hairline cracks that we had to touch up.  During Covid I ordered a twin to this in a featherlight, the price kept growing along with the extra padding that we get here in California 💸💰💸💰. The worse part was that they were back ordered with an estimate of 12 to 18 months, so when this came along I just cancelled the feather light.  I have a close friend with a feather light and they are great trailers, I think it has a bit better workmanship and I especially like the aluminum floors. What I will say is they both are easy to pull down the road compared to some  non aluminum trailers and some tri axles that I have pulled.  

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On 2/22/2024 at 2:15 AM, ramair said:

During Covid I ordered a twin to this in a featherlight, the price kept growing along with the extra padding that we get here in California 💸💰💸💰. The worse part was that they were back ordered with an estimate of 12 to 18 months, so when this came along I just cancelled the feather light.  I have a close friend with a feather light and they are great trailers, I think it has a bit better workmanship and I especially like the aluminum floors. What I will say is they both are easy to pull down the road compared to some  non aluminum trailers and some tri axles that I have pulled.  

 

 

Yup, I ordered mine in July, 2021 and didn't get it until Thanksgiving, 2022.   If was supposed to be delivered in 11 months and it ended up being 16 months.  I hated it, but once I got the trailer, it was all forgotten.  As much of a pain in the butt as it was, it was well worth the wait.  From the time I ordered that trailer until now, the list price keeps getting higher and higher, so I'm glad that I didn't put it off.

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On 2/18/2024 at 7:43 PM, Larry Schramm said:

Very nice trailer.

Thank you.  I put a lot of thought into it.  I got the biggest trailer that I could buy that I could pull with my half ton pickup.  If I can pull that trailer with my half ton, then there's nothing else that I own that won't be able to pull it.

 

Of course my father would skin me alive if he knew what I paid for it, but he never lived long enough to see it.  Where him and I differed in opinion was that we spend a lot of money when it comes time to restore a car and after spending that money, I'm not about to cut corners on trailers, straps and towing equipment to get that car to and from the meets that we go to.

 

Edited by ex98thdrill (see edit history)
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On 1/23/2024 at 9:48 PM, West Peterson said:

Has anyone had troubles with tailgate ramp on their aluminum ATC trailer? On my round trip from Dayton to Las Vegas, while running through the desert in Utah, every single bolt holding the ramp in place fell out. Granted.... the roads out there are as rough or worse than Michigan roads (Oklahoma City was especially BAD), but it seems that threading bolts into the aluminum box frame cross-member is not a good permanent way to do it. No nuts. A good friend admitted he had the exact same thing happen to his ATC, so I'm wondering how common this is????

 

This trailer is only a few years old, as was my friend's.

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Does anyone here have any good or bad experience with trailers made by the Aluminum Trailer Company (ATC)? I'm looking you get one of their car haulers.

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9 hours ago, michaelmackay said:

Does anyone here have any good or bad experience with trailers made by the Aluminum Trailer Company (ATC)? I'm looking you get one of their car haulers.

I’m very happy with the one I bought new in September of 2019.

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