A horse trailer is understood to be a type of vehicle that is attached to a motor vehicle as a trailer . It usually has one or two stands for horses (although there are also some larger models), a double axle (tandem axle) less than 1 m apart (is therefore considered a single axle) and an overrun brake .
A chassis, usually welded from galvanized steel girders, has a closed structure with usually parallel side walls and a tapering front ( aerodynamics ). Horse trailers can be constructed from different materials:
- Structure made of wooden panels (e.g. multiplex panel ) with a wooden floor and a truck tarpaulin
- Structure made of wooden panels (e.g. multiplex panel) with a wooden floor and a polyester cover
- Structure made of wooden panels (e.g. multiplex panel) with aluminum floor and truck tarpaulin / polyester hood
- Construction of aluminum planks with aluminum floor and truck tarpaulin / polyester hood / aluminum hood
- Structure made of cast polyester parts ("full polyester hanger")
- Sheet steel construction
There are a large number of different manufacturers and models on the market with numerous technical variations. Most horse trailers are loaded and unloaded from behind (in the direction of travel) via a ramp. However, there are also models with a swing door and step through which horses enter and ramps or doors at the front of the trailer, e.g. B. to get off. In most horse trailers, the horses stand in the direction of travel; In some models, they are inclined, which is supposed to help the horses achieve an improved balance when moving the vehicle. The horses are usually separated from one another by a partition made of wood or a thick film, which can be swiveled for loading the horses, which is connected at the front with a cross bar and at the rear with two bars that are hooked behind the horses, also fixed to the outer walls of the trailer is separated.
The floor is mostly made of wood laminates such as screen printing plates or vapor barrier plates with an integrated aluminum sheet or aluminum elements and in many cases covered with a non-slip rubber mat. Wood generally has a better soundproofing effect, but is more susceptible to corrosion than aluminum. Rotten wooden floors have collapsed under stress from horse legs. Therefore, these must be checked regularly and replaced if necessary.
Further features are for example
- a separate saddle room
- transparent partition between the horses
- Front window
- Feeding troughs
- Feed tarpaulin
- Water tank / shower (for the horses)
- Video surveillance
- adjustable cross bars to secure horses of different sizes in front and behind
- Panic release of the cross bars
- changing room
The wheelbase between the two axles is 70 to 90 cm for the models on the market. The longer the wheelbase, the better the straight-line stability and the rocking behavior, but the more difficult it is to turn the trailer or to drive through curves.
Four different axle systems are installed in horse trailers:
- Rubber suspension axle
- Torsion bar axle - often built into older trailers.
- Torsion spring axle - a principle that was adopted from the Messerschmitt cabin roller in axle production for trailer axles. Is rarely used anymore.
- Independent wheel suspension with wishbones - Was first used by the Westfalia Trailergroup .
The empty weight of horse trailers is between approx. 600 kg for lightweight models and approx. 800 kg for 2 horse trailers with a polyester or aluminum structure. The weight of a “2 full poly” horse trailer with a registered empty weight of 780 kg including saddle compartment, rubber mat etc. is easily 900 kg and more. Retrofitting z. B. with a double bottom on old trailers can lead to the empty weight exceeding the entered value.
In any case, a suitable towing vehicle must be used when pulling two horses with z. B. 600 kg can be used. The permissible total weight of the trailer must not be exceeded. To measure the total gross vehicle weight (gross vehicle weight), the payload of the trailer is added to the empty weight of the trailer. A towing vehicle with a maximum trailer load of 1,600 kg may, for example, pull a trailer that has an actual total mass (not GVW) of 1,600 kg. The (theoretical) maximum total mass according to the registration certificate part I or II or the type plate does not count unless it is exceeded. The vertical load must be at least 4% of the actual total mass; it must not exceed the maximum vertical load of the towing vehicle and that of the trailer.
Overloading is punished in Germany according to the catalog of fines and fines. If the owner of the vehicle has approved or even ordered the overloading, he can also be fined in addition to the driver.
Required driving license classes
Driving license class B is sufficient for combinations with a gross vehicle weight of up to 3.5 t .
Driving license classes BE or B96 are required for trailers with a gross vehicle weight of over 3.5 t .
- With driving license class B96 (more precisely: driving license class B with code number 96), the permissible total weight of the combination can be up to 4.25 t (towing vehicle maximum 3.5 t)
- With driving license class BE, the permissible total weight of the trailer may be up to 3.5 t, in addition, class C1E is required for this combination even when using a class B towing vehicle
- With driving licenses of the class BE, which were issued before January 19, 2013, trailers with a total weight of more than 3.5 t may still be pulled
The former German driving license of class 3 (cars with trailers) stipulated that only single-axle trailers were allowed to be towed, whereby tandem-axle trailers, as they are typical for horse trailers, were also considered single-axle trailers, provided that the distance between axles was less than one meter. This limitation no longer applies to the new EU driving licenses.
100 km / h approval (Germany)
Certain cars with trailers, certain multi-lane motor vehicles with a gross vehicle weight of up to 3.5 t and 100 km / h approved COM with a gross vehicle weight of up to 3.5 t with a trailer are permitted, in deviation from Section 18 (5) No. 1 of the Road Traffic Regulations Drive up to 100 km / h on motorways and motorways. The "100 km / h approval" is not relevant for trailer trips abroad.
The vehicle combinations must meet the following requirements for horse trailers:
- Towing vehicle with ABS in connection with a horse trailer (or other trailer) with overrun brake and suitable for a maximum speed of 100 km / h:
- permissible mass of the trailer ≤ 1.1 × empty mass of the towing vehicle; or
- Permissible mass of the trailer ≤ 1.2 × empty mass of the towing vehicle, if equipped with a towing device with roll damping in accordance with ISO 11555–1, or with another technical device that proves the operation of the combination up to 120 km / h by means of a parts certificate / ABE is;
The following also applies:
- permissible mass of the trailer (this can be "weighted down") ≤ permissible mass of the towing vehicle,
- permissible mass of the trailer ≤ permissible trailer load of the towing vehicle according to the vehicle registration document,
- The trailer tires have not been added to the load index for 100 km / h ,
- The trailer tires correspond to at least the speed category L (= 120 km / h),
- The trailer has tires less than 6 years.
- The 100 badge with an official seal must be attached to the rear of the trailer in order to be able to use the Tempo 100 regulation.
Thus the maximum permissible mass of the trailer is the smallest of the three values "permissible trailer load", "permissible vehicle mass" and "empty weight * factor 1.1 or 1.2".
The mass information can be found in the entries in the vehicle registration documents (empty mass: Section 14, permissible mass: Section 15). A tire can receive an addition to the load index if it is designed for a higher speed; In this case, one tire can still be sufficient for a permit up to 80 km / h if its load capacity is actually less than necessary. This “reallocation” from speed to load is no longer possible with a 100 km / h approval.
The manufacturer can certify the suitability for operation up to 100 km / h. If such a certificate is not available from the manufacturer, the trailer must at least meet the requirement that its axles are approved for speeds of up to 100 km / h (it is on the trailer's nameplate). However, this is not a sufficient condition; there may be additional requirements that are required in individual cases by the responsible testing authority for approval (e.g. TÜV or Dekra ), for example conversion to hydraulic shock absorbers. Admission can also be refused entirely.
The "100 km / h approval" is not relevant for trailer trips abroad. The maximum permitted speed of the respective country applies there .
Examples of the calculation
1. Saab 9-3 I TiD (details according to vehicle registration document), trailer with sway coupling:
- permissible mass = empty towing vehicle mass 1465 kg × 1.2 = 1758 kg,
- Total weight = 1910 kg,
- Trailer load max. 1600 kg
The permissible mass of the trailer is limited to 1600 kg, as this is the smallest of the three values (1600, 1758, 1910). If you want to use a trailer with a factory higher permissible mass (2000–2400 kg are typical), a load reduction would be necessary.
2. Audi A4 avant Quattro TDI 172 kW (information according to Audi website):
- permissible mass = towing vehicle empty mass 1660 kg × 1.2 = 1992 kg,
- Total weight = 2210 kg,
- Trailer load max. 2000 kg (with max. 8% gradient)
The smallest value here is the upper one from 1992; in this case the curb weight of the vehicle limits the permissible mass of the trailer.
For example, a 1x5 / 1x R 1x 85 L can be used as tires, where "x" defines the dimensions of the tire as a variable depending on the trailer, "85" stands for a load capacity of 515 kg (safety reserve) and "L" means 120 km / h .
The previously required explicit approval of each individual towing vehicle-trailer combination, whereby the towing vehicle also received a small 100 badge for the windshield, has been abolished since October 21, 2005 (by the third regulation amending the 9th exception regulation to the StVO).
Tax and Insurance (Germany)
Horse trailers can be approved with black or green license plates.
Vehicles with green license plates are exempt from vehicle tax. There is no obligation to take out liability insurance. According to Section 7 of the Road Traffic Act, the two owners of cars and trailers are jointly liable for accident damage. However, trailers with green license plates can be voluntarily insured against liability.
Horse trailers with green license plates are restricted to use for sports purposes. It is not allowed to transport other goods, including animal feed. There is no tax exemption with black license plates and use is permitted for all transport goods, for example motorcycles or furniture.
Horse trailers with a green license plate can be re-registered for black license plates after an individual acceptance according to §21 by the TÜV (old federal states).
- Martin Haller: Practice book - transport horses safely , Leopold Stocker Verlag, ISBN 978-3-7020-1350-9
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