3.5t vans

Follysmum

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15 February 2013
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Looking for recommendations for 3.5t vans. Previously I had an Equitrek which I bought new approx 10yrs ago and was happy with, fast forward now and I think there are many better makes and wouldn’t buy an Equitrek again.

Probably should of kept mine but wasn’t being used as much as it should, now have a youngster which will be going out and about more so have been researching.

Am thinking Bloomfields or Alexander
Anyone else got any recommendations
Thanks
 

ycbm

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30 January 2015
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Tatton and Boss localish to me both very expensive but very good reputations. Cookes build is exceptional in my friend's lorry but I don't know if they make 3.5s.

Avoid Regent unless you have DIY skills to hand, build quality is abysmal. I have one I bought newly converted.

Alexander build quality, I have heard, can depend on whether they have subcontracted the build.
 

Red-1

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Keeping on, keeping on...
Bloomfields is mine. I did look at Alexanders, but they were not half as well built IMO (the ones I looked at anyway). One had a wooden floor with small pieces of rubber screwed down (brand new in the proper Alexanders showroom) and when I said I wanted a single piece of rubber as far as is possible they told me then that it depends who builds it as the sub contract. They also would not give me a weight, so that was no good to start with!

I then saw a Bloomfields whilst spectating at Osberton and was blown away by the comparative quality. It took me years to get the money together (OH had to retire and contribute a chunk of his commutation before it happened!) and even after ordering it was 9 months to be built but I have been very happy. They were happy to make it very bespoke.

Not the cheapest but they do hold their value well.

ETA - I may be wrong, but after there was a court case (to do with a horse falling through the floor of a box) I think Alexanders went out of business. They gave as a defence that a sub contractor built the box (I think I remember).


https://www.horseandhound.co.uk/new...ed-65k-horsebox-owner-campaigns-change-657733
Extra edit, I think this was the story in H&H...
 

Bernster

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Bloomfields do look amazing and they build off the chassis base unlike any other that I know of. That’s why they are more expensive. I’d def go for them if I had the cash.

I got mine from Freddie Gover and I really rate him too and would recommend. Other ones that get a decent write up are boss and Kevin Parker.
 

Tiddlypom

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Defo swerve Alexanders. They sold a neighbour an absolute shocker of a very expensive new build small box , and despite it being returned to them on many occasions to be fixed, it was never repaired properly. She eventually got them to buy it back at a loss to her, after lengthy legal proceedings in which they tried to evade their responsibilities at every step of the way.

The problems started when she first travelled a horse in it, and the horse (a good traveller) kicked through the *strengthened* bulkhead behind her as she was driving. There were many other issues, too, it was outright dangerous.

Cooke’s have a good rep, they do build 3.5t’s.
 

Follysmum

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That’s shocking Tiddlypom
It’s certainly worth doing a lot of research. They might look nice and pretty but what are some masking.
 

Marigold4

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I have an old Theault. Custom made as a horse lorry rather than a conversion. Exit door at the back as well as side ramp, grills over proper doors rather than breast bars. Fans,
lots of windows and horse has own sound system operated from cab! Everything good quality but not flashy. Love it!
 

oldie48

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I have a John Oats box, which I bought secondhand a couple of years ago. I would have liked an Oakley, Bloomfield or Boss but they are tricky to find secondhand and I couldn't afford a new one. I've had a few mechanical problems with it but am very happy with the build. It's now nearly 5 years old and still looks great. I was going to have one built for me but they struggled to find a suitable chassis so when one came up secondhand I went for that and saved myself quite a lot of money. Generally I think they are good value.
 

Elf On A Shelf

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We have had 2 Equitrek's at the yard and I wouldn't touch them with a 10mile barge pole! We have a Bloomfields which I am in love with ... and I can't remember the other make we have but it's again a very nice, well built box.
 

chaps89

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Having driven a Bloomfield, if you can afford one then I would absolutely go for one of those.
There's a John Oates on our yard that looks quite smart.
Peper Harrow would be another to look at.
 
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I really don’t think you can go wrong with a racemaster
I have one, nice solid little box, not necessarily a pretty box but v well built and safe. I got the cab chassis (then 4 yr old) and they built the box for me.

I like the Kevin Parker, Bloomfield, George Smith and Boss boxes but wasn't quite in their price range when I got mine built in 2012.
 

Boulty

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Racemaster are basic but solid & reasonably priced. If you’re not fussed for bells & whistles they’ve a good bet. I owned one for a few years. It wasn’t without issues (but it was about 15 yrs old when I sold it) but could stand up to tantrumming very well & was light & airy with plenty of room for the horse & lots of gear.

Also Polly at Travel Two deals a lot in 2nd hand 3.5 tons but also works with another company doing custom conversions so may be worth a phone call.

Kevin Parker are decent boxes (I know a few people with them), as are Bloomfields (again I know people with them & I’ve also hired the odd one) & Boss. If you can find one Thealt are blooming brilliant, fantastic build quality (again having hired one a few times)

Oh god avoid Alexander’s like the plague though! They did a service & some minor repair work for me once, misquoted me & then tried to cover it up & were generally bloody awful to deal with. And then there’s the other issues that have come to light about their work practices...
 

Spottyappy

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Go and view a few of the builders, and speak to a lot first.
Be aware that the build time, in my experience, is rarely adhered to! Allow another 2-3 months to what they say! This is my experience, anyway, with both 3.5t and 7.5t new builds. But, you are having a bespoke item. Most companies aren’t great at communication, although some may have improved since I used them.
 

tda

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18 April 2013
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Yorkshire
I follow Bloomfields and was very keen on them til I saw Kevin Parker Horseboxes and am saving up to have one built by them. Interestingly they are building more 4.5ton boxes than ever before, at last people are realising about payload
 

Elf On A Shelf

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Our Edinburgh Gin one has no makers mark other than Horseboxes.com on the tail and Sovereign Horse Boxes on the number plate. But it is a bloody good box!
 

sportsmansB

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Theault are fab but you pay for it.
There is a company local to me called Roughan and I have seen a few of theirs and they seem to be good quality.
Mine is The Horsebox Company. I have had no trouble with it at all but its not in the same league (or price range!) as the Bloomfields or Theaults.
 

EJJ999

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I have one for sale that I got from Traveltwo. If nothing else Polly gives really good advice and only sells solid/safe boxes.
 

milliepops

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I have one for sale that I got from Traveltwo. If nothing else Polly gives really good advice and only sells solid/safe boxes.
I second that, my budget didn't stretch to the ones traveltwo had on their books but Polly was generous with her advice and tipped me off to the box I eventually bought (before it came on the market ;) )
 
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