Curtain side Straight Truck?
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  1. #1
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    Default Curtain side Straight Truck?

    I'm in the process of buying a 18' box truck, wondering if the box can be converted to a curtain side truck?

    If it costs too much to convert, any idea on price on a new curtain side, also what manufacturer would you recommend?

    Thanks for any guidance!

    Kevin

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    One issue with a traditional curtainside 53' trailer is that the back end has a triangulated brace structure to resist the force of tensioning the curtain (its almost like a load binder deal at the front of the trailer). The structure is removable but takes up a good 6ft of space from the back end.

    Not sure if that's a big problem with your intended useage but it sounds like a pain if one was constantly having to R&R it for long loads or if the truck is intended to be fully loaded with stuff.

    Another angle is the collapsed curtain can be rolled front or back but it also always occupies some space, let's just say 6ft total but then you'd never be able to put an 18' piece on the truck from the side, would be limited to about 12' of max length. Again not sure if that's a problem with your intended useage.

    I think if you had a straight flatbed and just invested in some actual Heavy Duty tarps that would be suitable for long haul trucking it would be a whole lot cheaper at the end of the day. Made up in more labor to fold/stow/tension the tarp but it all boils down to the amount of useage, whether that's 5x per year or 5x per day.

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt_isserstedt View Post
    One issue with a traditional curtainside 53' trailer is that the back end has a triangulated brace structure to resist the force of tensioning the curtain (its almost like a load binder deal at the front of the trailer). The structure is removable but takes up a good 6ft of space from the back end.

    Not sure if that's a big problem with your intended useage but it sounds like a pain if one was constantly having to R&R it for long loads or if the truck is intended to be fully loaded with stuff.

    Another angle is the collapsed curtain can be rolled front or back but it also always occupies some space, let's just say 6ft total but then you'd never be able to put an 18' piece on the truck from the side, would be limited to about 12' of max length. Again not sure if that's a problem with your intended useage.

    I think if you had a straight flatbed and just invested in some actual Heavy Duty tarps that would be suitable for long haul trucking it would be a whole lot cheaper at the end of the day. Made up in more labor to fold/stow/tension the tarp but it all boils down to the amount of useage, whether that's 5x per year or 5x per day.
    The curtain side box trucks have a frame around the opening, only need a removable support in the middle depending on the size of the truck?

    I have a 1 ton dually now with a trailer, also have the professional truckers tarp with d-rings, tarping loads consume most of the time tying down loads and it sucks!

    I bought a 18' box truck, now I'm going to sell the pickup and trailer, with the proceeds I will put it into a curtain side body.

    This will be mainly for hauling smaller machines.......a friend bought 8 lathes out of Nevada a few years ago, they were loaded on a curtain side truck, just thought it would be the best of both worlds, depending on cost?

    IIRC, the curtain occupied about 2' of the front of the trailer while loading?

    Kevin

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    I think that’s a great idea for a straight truck that size, but I think it will end up being a custom install. If there’s a commercial trailer repair shop around they might point you the right direction for design and materials.

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    The ones where the top and sides retract are really nice. Then you can load/unload with a crane. Like these: Retractable Tarp Systems - LCS Canada

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    I have seen at least one curtain side straight truck before.
    It's been done.


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    Think Snow Eh!
    Ox

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ox View Post
    I have seen at least one curtain side straight truck before.
    It's been done.


    ----------------------

    Think Snow Eh!
    Ox
    This is what I would like, waiting on quotes now to see if I will have to do this myself?

    Dry Freight Curtainsider Truck Bodies by Morgan Truck Body

    Kevin

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    That looks like an excellent way to transport machinery!

    If I ever had to move my shop again that would be part of the vision

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    The issue with that - is that you cannot crane.

    If you go with the Conastoga (?) type, then you can.
    BUT - then you are not covered when loading either - like you are here.

    It's all a trade off in this life...


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    Ox

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    A curtain side "flat bed trailer can be rated to support concentrated loads, a flat bed body for a straight truck? It looks like these bodies are designed for bulk load type use. Small machines are not an issue but, a heavy machine with a small footprint may be more than the bed can support.

    I agree with Ox that a curtain side Vs a Conestoga are trade offs, both have good/bad aspects. In "flat bed trucking" curtain side trailers are a distant second choice because of loading limitations. That may not be an issue for your needs, the strength or lack there of may be more of a problem in machinery transport?

    Steve

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    You ask a driver to unroll and tie down a 150lb tarp and curtains now,he d jus look at you.....unless hes over 60 ,and remembers the bad old days.....consequently its all curtainsiders,the only flat decks are for bulk bags,steel ,or timber ......I know at my shop,I used to get a dozen calls a week to unload trailers with the crane,curtainsiders was forklifts only ,and everyone has a forklift..........next to me was a boat shop....he had plenty of problems getting boats out of curtainsiders.....with the crane ,I could drop them onto the tow hitch of his pickup.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bsg View Post
    This is what I would like, waiting on quotes now to see if I will have to do this myself?

    Dry Freight Curtainsider Truck Bodies by Morgan Truck Body

    Kevin
    I was in ATL last week and saw that exact truck sporting a Gexpro logo on it.

    I forgot how many box trucks lived in metro Atlanta - might be a place to start looking for a turnkey unit, even though you already have a truck....

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt_isserstedt View Post
    I was in ATL last week and saw that exact truck sporting a Gexpro logo on it.

    I forgot how many box trucks lived in metro Atlanta - might be a place to start looking for a turnkey unit, even though you already have a truck....

    The great thing about curtain side flatbeds is that you don't have to fuss about trying to cover up equipment from the rain.


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