Horseboxes or Trailer - again!

Lexie01

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Sorry I know this question has been done to death - I have read many previous threads on this but I am still struggling to make a decision!
I currently have a fab 3.5 box which I love - but we are doing more stay away shows and it is proving not practical. Currently about 5-6 per year but likely to go up. I also do a lot of local shows and PC events and this is my problem.
Do I invest in a 7.5 lorry - great for stay overs but not that great for the small local journeys I make - and have the faff of plating etc. Or as I already have a X5 go for an Equitrek trailer with overnight living?
Would be interested to hear from anyone who has been in my position and what they did - positives and negatives. Thanks.
 

Red-1

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As you already have the 3.5 that you are generally happy with, could you not add a caravan on the back for the few times that you are staying away?

I always thought you would need an additional licence for this, plus tacho etc, but was shouted down on another thread, so maybe ROG could advise?

I personally would not have an Equitrek, as I don't like the quality of finish or the fact that they have a breast bar and a narrow back door (accident waiting to happen IMO).

Have you looked at the 4.5 tonne smaller van based boxes? Some have a neat little living on the back but remain handy everyday vehicles.

I have gone from 12.5 tonne, to 7.5 tonne and now 3.95 tonne (no living as such, just a couple of seats and a wardrobe) and although I do miss the sink/hob/double bed/heating/sofas etc, I am enjoying the handiness of the small box too much to want to swap back. Plus the fuel economy.
 
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Lexie01

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I did think about that and have looked at smaller caravans but tbh I would be worried about driving it behind the box. I'm not a particularly nervous driver in my box but think I would be one towing a caravan as well.
 

Green Bean

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Personally, I would go for a trailer with some living but they are not always realistically priced. As you say, you have the towing vehicle already so cost wise it is an option. Saying that though, I like the idea of a large box with living as it opens up the opportunities for extended horse centred holidays. I do worry about the steepness of the ramp though, but that is just because my mare can be difficult loading. Hard choice but I am sure you have an idea in mind already
 

Lexie01

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Thanks Green Bean. I honestly don't know which way to go as there are pros and cons for both. I worry about driving a large 7.5 so I would want a smaller compact one which I would be ok with but the ones I like seem to be super expensive (I am a bit OCD about cleanliness and don't want an old box). I could buy a new trailer but again worry about driving one - particularly reversing!! But then you do get the benefit of a car at a show to pop to the pub/shops etc. I just seem to go around in circles!
 

Wheels

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I did think about that and have looked at smaller caravans but tbh I would be worried about driving it behind the box. I'm not a particularly nervous driver in my box but think I would be one towing a caravan as well.
This would not be that much different to driving your 4x4 and large equi-trek

I would love one of the 6.5t trucks based on a van chassis but with room for decent living
 

Spottyappy

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I have had all of the configurations you mention! My favourite was the 7.5t BUT they cost an absolute fortune to keep on the road. I did use mine locally too, as well as staying away, but unless it’s used regularly it seemed to cost even more as things ceased up.
Contrary to many, I like the equitrek. I don’t like towing, however, but the horses travelled well and it towed the best of any trailer I have had. Equally, the Beds in the living are for tiny people! They are very narrow and not that long, so were not practical for us. We just had fishing beds in the back.
And, that is what we do with the 3.5t and ifor trailer we now use. Take a portable gas cooker,fishing beds and they both do us well, though of course lack the complete comfort of the 7.5t.
Good luck in your decision!
 

Lexie01

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Ah that might be a problem then Spottyappy. I would probably be ok with the beds on the equitrek but my daughter is 5.10 so she might be too tall for comfort?
I was told that equitrek trailers are the best to tow as well - better than ifw.
I to use the back of the 3.5 - with camper beds but for 3 it is a squeeze!
 

Red-1

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Have you had a look at some of the modern tents? Some almost put themselves up. I was next to a great big gazebo at one stay away venue, it just folded out, was waterproof and tall too. The people looked very comfortable indeed.
 

Tiddlypom

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The new Ifor HBX trailer range have a fitted awning rail so that you can attach a dedicated tent. The trailers are very nice indeed. I was looking at them again this week re an upgrade from my existing 2006 Ifor, though I wasn’t particularly looking at the tent bit.

https://www.barlowtrailers.co.uk/Ifor-Williams-LH-Awning-For-HBX506-HBX403-Horse-Trailers

B2332C9A-06CC-49C6-9D10-3697531FAE34.jpeg

80044143-FB77-4512-9C78-C837D96089F9.jpeg

ETA Our 6 berth 7.0m motorhome has a 2t tow limit, so theoretically we could tow the Ifor 510 with my 650 kg IDx mare behind it, but I would not fancy taking such a long combination out and about o_O.
 
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Spottyappy

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Lexie, go and view one,and try the beds!
They are so narrow on the show treka, that we couldn’t curl our legs Enough to sleep comfortably and lying straight didn’t work.
Im 5’9, my daughter is 6’.
The star treka maybe better, but it would be worth viewing a show treka and seeing what you think.
 

Hack4fun

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There are many useful boxes between 3.5 and 7.5 that are more compact, more fuel efficient and offer some form of living. Have a really good look around.
 

Lexie01

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thank you all so much for your comments. I love the ifor awning b ut I have been at some stay over shows where there is no grass to pitch - likewise for a tent. I also don't really like the idea of having to take down a tent at the end of an event when you just want to get home.
I will go and look at the sleeping arrangements in an equitrek but it possibly a compact 7.5 might br the way to go. Thanks you for your help.
 

Landcruiser

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Random thoughts:
I'd suggest maybe going round somewhere that people are overnighting, and speak to people about their combos/pros, cons. I do a lot of TREC and there is a huge variety of horse transport, all regularly used for 2 night competitions. People in TREC are always glad to chat, or even show you their "Accommodation" if you are interested - I don't know if it's the same in other stay away disciplines.
Over recent months, I've seen a new sort of combo more and more commonly - compact (but very smart) camper vans towing trailers. These are great, and would be multipurpose for weekends or holidays away without horses (is that a thing?) That said, I think I'd miss the 4x4 peace of mind on wet grass, muddy fields etc.
I was parked up next to an IW Eventa L last weekend - I had a snoop and long chat with the owner - it looked fab, with lots of nice features.
I miss my 7.5 but I don't miss the enormous cost of keeping it on the road. The emissions laws have tightened, and lots of people are falling foul of them in the older (and not so old) lorries.
I now sleep in my trailer and have a camp bed and camp stove on a little folding table and it is a compromise but it is fine for one woman and her dog.
 

phizz4

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You can get 4 wheel drive versions of the VW based camper van conversions, so that solves the problem of getting off muddy fields. Most have twin or a double bed, kitchen, fridge and some have inbuilt toilet/shower. Go for a high output diesel and it will tow a trailer with one horse in quite comfortably. The versions with the 2.5 engine are available as an automatic and have a towing capacity of 2500 kg.
 

Toby_Zaphod

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Sorry I know this question has been done to death - I have read many previous threads on this but I am still struggling to make a decision!
I currently have a fab 3.5 box which I love - but we are doing more stay away shows and it is proving not practical. Currently about 5-6 per year but likely to go up. I also do a lot of local shows and PC events and this is my problem.
Do I invest in a 7.5 lorry - great for stay overs but not that great for the small local journeys I make - and have the faff of plating etc. Or as I already have a X5 go for an Equitrek trailer with overnight living?
Would be interested to hear from anyone who has been in my position and what they did - positives and negatives. Thanks.
There is no Faff about 'plating' a 7.5 ton lorry. it's a MOT test that's all. If you maintain your lorry it should go through the test without any issue. Also the test does not have a particular day that it expires, it expires at the end of the month so you have plenty of time to book in. They are more to run than a trailer obviously, they have to have test certificate, insurance & recovery on them plus fuel but I feel more safe carrying 2 large horses in a lorry that in a trailer. I have a 7.5 ton horsebox & a Fiesta eco boost for normal travel & the Fiesta does far more mpg that any 4x4 towing vehicle plus I pay no excise license for it.

Towing a small caravan behind a 3.5 ton horsebox may be possible but I'm not sure because the weight of the horse/horses in the box may affect how much you can tow? In theory having an awning that can fix to the side of a trailer, or even a tent could provide the living at a show but many shows have hard standing for trailers & horseboxes & you may not be able to get a peg in, plus you may not be allowed to pitch in the lorry park? If there is a camping field available then fine but not may shows have that.

There is no ideal answer to the lorry or trailer question, it depends on your own circumstances & budget.
 

SpottyMare

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I've been thinking about this myself.

I've just sold my equitrek star treka which i loved - it was good quality, comfortable, there was lots of space for the horses and I could make myself a cup of tea... Only sold it because it was just going to be standing around for the next year or two.

BUT. With my Discovery it made for a very long vehicle - when the trailer was parked next to my friends 7.5t lorry, it wasn't that much smaller on it's own. It could be 'interesting' reversing it in tight spaces, as the time lag between turning the steering wheel and the trailer starting to respond seemed more than with smaller trailers.

I'm starting to think that a 3.5t with a tiny caravan on the back would be the most practical solution (something like a go pod or similar)
 

sportsmansB

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If I had the correct license I would be going for a 5t-6.5t van type or the likes of the Peper harrow (is that the name, i always see them pop up on my fb).
I only have a license for a 3.5t so I just have a blow up bed for the horse area and a massive tarpaulin to put over the floor (!).
 

merlinsquest

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If I had the correct license I would be going for a 5t-6.5t van type or the likes of the Peper harrow (is that the name, i always see them pop up on my fb).
I only have a license for a 3.5t so I just have a blow up bed for the horse area and a massive tarpaulin to put over the floor (!).
I’m obviously posh as I have a rug for the floor 😂
 
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