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30-Ft Hopper Bottom Grain Trailer
Thomas Ruffing, Bellevue, Ohio, recently sent FARM SHOW photos of a 30-ft. hopper bottom, tandem axle grain trailer built by his son Scott, age 19, with help from his other sons Steve, 17, and Mike, 15.
"I'm really proud of the job my sons did at such a young age," says Thomas. "It's built heavier than most commercial trailers and cost about $6,000 less to build than a commercial trailer of the same size. We use it to haul grain from the field to our bins and from the bins to the elevator in town. It all started after I bought a new 730-bu. trailer that was built with poor workmanship and wasn't quite big enough for our needs. Scott decided we could build our own and do a better job."
"Trailer capacity is a little over 1,000 bu. We can't quite fill the trailer up all the way because the International 466 diesel engine in our semi tractor doesn't have enough power to pull it. We used 16-ga. sheet metal on the sides, but if we could do it over again we'd use lighter gauge steel to help reduce the weight. The trailer's two hoppers slope down 40 degrees which keeps wet grain from sticking. It can be used with either single or tandem axle tractors."
The trailer's wheels and heavy-duty "Pro-Par" axles are off an old semi trailer van. The Ruffings paid $200 for them. Steve completely rebuilt the axles and installed new brake drums. They used 4 by 6-in. steel tubing to build the bottom part of the trailer frame and 2 by 4-in. tubing to build the top part. The floor is made from 3/16-in. thick sheet metal. The dollies were purchased new. The trailer has a Shur-Lock tarp and was painted with automotive paint.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Scott T. Ruffing, 2340 Section Line Road 30, Bellevue, Ohio 44811 (ph 419 483-2986).

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1996 - Volume #20, Issue #4