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Trailer Lingo

If you are around trailers at all, it may be that you know a bit about the “lingo” involved. But if you are a first time trailer owner, or just someone who likes to research, we have put together an index of common terms within the trailer industry. If you don’t see something listed here and really need to know, please do not hesitate to contact us or stop by our Jonesboro, Georgia location and we can help you out.     

  • Rock Guard – Aluminum tread plate on front of trailers preventing dings and scratches from slung up debris.
  • ATP – Aluminum Tread Plate: also known as rock guard.
  • STP – Steel Tread Plate.
  • Beaver Tail – Slight incline at the rear of the trailer. Same As DoveTail
  • DoveTail – Slight incline at the rear of the trailer. Same As Beaver Tail
  • O.C. – On Center: the distance between each crossmember. Usually used when referring to crossmembers.
  • “One Week Trailer” – A trailer purchased from the hardware store or off of Craigslist for a couple hundred dollars that ends up needing an axle, tires, bearings or hubs, and welds fixed. So, in one week, you end up buying a new one. *Don’t Be A “One Week Trailer” Victim.
  • Curb Side – The side of the trailer equivalent to the passenger’s side of a vehicle in the United States.
  • Street Side – The side of the trailer equivalent to the driver’s side of a vehicle in the United States.
  • Bumper Pull – Trailer that connects to a ball hitch that’s attached to the tow vehicle’s frame or bumper. Also called “tag along”.
  • Tag along – Trailer that connects to a ball hitch that is attached to the tow vehicle’s frame or bumper. Also called “‘bumper pull’.
  • Gooseneck – Trailer that attaches to a ball in bed of a pickup or a semi truck.
  • Tongue Weight – The amount of the trailer’s weight that is transferred to the tow vehicle through the trailer tongue or gooseneck.
  • Enclosed Cargo Trailer – Any trailer with full side enclosures and a roof. (Also known as Enclosed Utility Trailers or Cargo Trailer)
  • Open Utility Trailer – Any trailer without supporting walls and roof.
  • Gooseneck Trailer – A style of trailer that connects to a receiver located in the bed of a pick-up truck. Given its name because of the shape.
  • Dump Trailer – A style of trailer that has an electric or hydraulic dump function. Meant to handle loosed material such as mulch, dirt, or stone.
  • Flat Bed Deck Over Trailer – A style of trailer that has a deck that extends over the wheels rather than between them. This style of build gives maximum usable width.
  • Car Hauler – A term referring to the use of the trailer, may be open or enclosed.
  • Landscape Trailer – A term referring to the use of the trailer, most commonly an Open Utility Trailer with short side walls.
  • Motorcycle Trailer – A term referring to the use of the trailer, most commonly enclosed, low profile with wheel guides and D-rings.
  • ATV Trailer – A term referring to the use of the trailer, most commonly enclosed with V-nose and Side Ramp.
  • Equipment Trailer – A term referring to the use of the trailer, most commonly Open Utility with Gooseneck and at least two Axles.
  • V-Nose – A style of Enclosed Trailer where the front wall is in the shape of a V. Helps with aerodynamics and extra space. also known as a Wedge Nose.
  • Side Rails – A feature found on Open Utility Trailers typically in 12″ or 24″ heights made of Angle Iron or Tubed Iron.
  • Flat Top – A style of roof found standard on Enclosed Trailers. See Round Top
  • Round Top – A style of roof on Cargo Trails which helps with melting snow off roofs and aerodynamics.
  • Single Axle – A trailer that only has one axle, or set of wheels.
  • Tandem Axle – A trailer style that has two axles rather than one, increasing its carrying capacity.
  • GVWR – Short for Gross Vehicle Weight Rating. Is the maximum weight the trailer itself (including axles) plus the equipment or materials being hauled can safely be towed.
  • GAWR – Short for Gross Axle Weight Rating. Is the maximum weight that each axle can safely carry.
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