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littlestarterfarmer
Frequent Contributor

Tandem trucks and weight restrictions

Ive recently been looking at buying a tandem truck and i got to talking with a fellow that raised my attention for weight restrictions. So i got to looking and in kansas a tandem truck can only legaly hold around 46000lbs, on most tandem trucks that only equates to around 450 bushels or so, but yet i have seen trucks that have the capacity to hold close to 700 bushels, that have the same axle combinations. My question is then, whats the point of haveing a big tandem truck with a 22' box when legally it cant hold anymore then one with a 18' box or so. Do people just not worry and haul illegal amounts, or am i missing something.

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6 Replies
infire
Frequent Contributor

Re: Tandem trucks and weight restrictions

Good luck trying to get a clear cut # on wieght limits, in In. if you talk to 3 DOT officers you will get 3 different #s, if you are just hauling from field to farm limits sometimes are not worried about as much but if your going to town with it that can be pretty expensive if your over.

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pan ag
Contributor

Re: Tandem trucks and weight restrictions

It takes more axles.  In Iowa you are allowed a total gvw based on number of axles and bridge (length from front axle center line to rear axle center line).  The tandems are allowed a max of 34,000 and the front axle is allowed up to 20,000 if it is rated to handle it.  If you add a pusher axle between the tandems and the fronts you are allowed an increase in gvw only by the amount that one axle adds.  However, if you add a tag axle (behind the tandems) you not only add an axle, but you increase bridge.  However, it matters how your truck is set up whether to add a pusher or a tag.  A pusher takes weight from the tandems and the fronts while a tag removes weight from the tandems and adds weight to the fronts.

 

To use my Sterling as an example, when loaded to it's original gvw of 54,000#, it had only 14,500 on the front axle that is rated for 20,000, and 39,500 on the tandems, a 5,500# overload and a $750 ticket.  We added a steerable15,000# tag, which increased the bridge also.  Now I have truck that, based on the extra axle and bridge, is legal for 61,500# and I use the tag to push weight on to my underutilized front axle.  I have 69,000# of total rated axle capacity, so I can distibute the 61,500# amongst all the axles and not get close to any axle max ratings.  That gives me over 40,000# payload or around 700 bu of corn.

 

If, however, you have a truck with less than a 20,000# front axle (like a converted semi tractor which are 12,000#), or one with the tandems way way back there, you will need a pusher to keep the weight off the front axle.  Also you could run both a tag and a pusher and go really nuts.  I see a lot of 5 axle dump trucks and some 6 axle milk trucks. 

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littlestarterfarmer
Frequent Contributor

Re: Tandem trucks and weight restrictions

Yeah thats my concern we do alot of hauling into town, though DOT usually arent much concern in our area,

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littlestarterfarmer
Frequent Contributor

Re: Tandem trucks and weight restrictions

Seems to me that it would be easier to get a pup to pull be hind the big truck and just put less bushels on the truck and load up the pup, or not even do it in the first place, a small tractor and single axle trailer could haul almost as much.

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8780xp
Frequent Visitor

Re: Tandem trucks and weight restrictions

be cautious about the DOT not being around.  they never bothered us much either till start of this year.  they are stopping us for everything.  loaded, unloaded, it doesn't matter.  they are really goin to town.  hope your area doesn't get like ours.

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infire
Frequent Contributor

Re: Tandem trucks and weight restrictions

IMO - starter down the road you will be happier with a tractor/ trailer setup, I fought buying a semi for years because of ability to unload at our bins & stuff, finnally gave in a year ago & should have my butt kicked it works so much better I don't think I'll ever buy another straight truck again & I really think we have less $ in it than our last straight truck. It's really what works for you, but it's also kinda like using an elcamino for a real pickup, it'll work but the pickup was made to do it! Have a safe harvest.

 

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