Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.
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  1. #1
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    Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    I have been researching doing this, and haven't found much, but finally came up with a design based off one I found that looked to be the best one. I know most would say just get a B&W and I did, and gonna take the ball out and reuse the hitch for another truck down the road or sell it. Here is the one I am using as a base design. http://www.dieselplace.com/forum/sho...d.php?t=319152
    If the upload works theres a paint drawing of my basic plan minus 5/16 braces on the reciever. Main plate is 6" 5/8 flatbar, and the frame braces are 3in by 5in 5/16 that will be bolted to the frame and flatbar with 5/8" grade 8 bolts. I know this is about 140.00 in material, and the BW is only 390.00 or so, but that takes the fun out of making things yourself that you can. I feel like I need to get the most out of welding school by making as manything myself as I can. I am really surprised to find that no one on here has tried to make there own hitch, and I don't mean screwing a ball to a piece of flat sheet and then bolting that to the bed. LOL
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  2. #2
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    I made on just like that a while back. I used heavy 12" channel for the accross the bed and a 2" reciever tube welded in for the pocket. had some gussets on the tube and 1/2 side plates to weld the channel to the frame. I never did hook up the pin mechanism like I wanted just crawled under there and unpinned it when needed. I used a piece of 2" square for the hitch ball that was drilled and threaded on the end for the ball to screw into. The ball was then welded to the square (can never be to sure).
    The cool thing was making attachments to go in the tube. I had some gin poles on a frae in there at one point.

    no pix of the hitch but heres some of the attachment
    Last edited by CarterKraft; 02-10-2012 at 12:29 AM. Reason: links no worky
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  3. #3
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Pretty sweet. I just about finished with a rear three point back blade attachment that I

    made for going into the reciever hitch on the back of one of my trucks. It has a 5th wheel

    hitch that I made the mounts for, and plan on running hydraulics, or a winch like you have

    to control it. I like making things yourself even though some think you should pay some

    other welder that can take the blame if something goes wrong.

    Last edited by jfive; 02-10-2012 at 01:20 AM.

  4. #4
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    For snow? Definitely want to see more of this and porn details!
    Bert

    Quote Originally Posted by jfive View Post
    Pretty sweet. I just about finished with a rear three point back blade attachment that I

    made for going into the reciever hitch on the back of one of my trucks. It has a 5th wheel

    hitch that I made the mounts for, and plan on running hydraulics, or a winch like you have

    to control it. I like making things yourself even though some think you should pay some

    other welder that can take the blame if something goes wrong.

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  5. #5
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Quote Originally Posted by jfive View Post
    I feel like I need to get the most out of welding school by making as manything myself as I can. I am really surprised to find that no one on here has tried to make there own hitch,
    This part worries me more than a little. I don't know what you mean by "welding school". There's basic welding programs and then there's in depth training programs like Lincolns or Hobarts school. Not exactly the same sort of thing.

    I honestly wouldn't trust just anyone who took a welding class to be able to weld up something like this. You need to be able to do code quality welds every time in all positions to even think about something like this. If you are in a program that will get you to this level, then maybe, depending on where you are in your skills.


    Also a lot of people forget that manufacturers often have access to materials other than "basic" steel. There are all sorts of high strength alloy steels out there for them to choose from, and some items may be built from these steels in order to save weight or gain a higher strength / durability. This is especially true today with vehicle frames and so on. If you build one or two, the added cost probably rules these sorts of steels out, but if you are making hundreds or thousands of something and buying material in bulk, then these materials can make more sense. Often they can be just slightly more expensive, and "cheaper" in the long run when everything else like shipping and so on gets added to the picture. Don't just "assume" they are using plain A-36 steel because it's what seems common to you.



    Also keep in mind that with something like this you take on a HUGE liability. I don't know if you read that thread about the UPS driver who died because a horse trailer came loose and hit his truck. You can pretty much guarantee the driver of the vehicle towing that horse trailer is in for a rough ride, both in criminal and civil court. A few hundred or even thousand dollars spent on a factory piece is a big "savings" and money well spent if it keeps you out of court. or limits your liability. You are taking on both the design and fabrication of a critical structural element. You had better know EXACTLY what you are doing.


    Personally I'd simply fork over the extra cash and find some other project like your blade to practice and apply your skills on.
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  6. #6
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    I understand your point, but I may have left out a good point. I have a camper that weighs 3800 lbs, a 22ft lite model that was a 5th wheel, but is now a gooseneck. I don't plan on pullling anything crazy with it. Its going on a F250 with a 302, so even if I sell it, it won't be pulling anything crazy I hope. Trust me, I didn't go to some high tech welding school, more like a get certified to weld unlimited thickness in all positions with stick, dual shield, ect. I did the learning part, and haven't finished to get certified. I will if I can stop working long enough. My teacher was a pipe welder for 10 years, then went back to school for more welding, and then owned his own fab shop for just under 20 years. His goal was to have us welding on a trailer so that he wouldn't be afraid of being killed by it when driving by it down the road. Kind of ironic but true. Now I don't mean to sound like a show boat, but I was one of the best students in his classes, and I would say that half the class, or even more didn't finish and I would not trust to do more than tack some stuff up. I could show you some of my work, and you decide, but as you know this is hardly a bend test. I weld as much as I can so I don't get rusty. I take my time, always weld in the flat position if I can, mainly cause its the way i was taught. Not that i wasn't taught to weld horizontal or vertical up, but because its easier to weld flat, and if you can do it. Now I might not have the years like you do, or skill, but my eyes are probubly better, and I am not on the down hill slope of welding. I think most don't realize that many welders out there have bad eyes cause they are getting older, and have a harder and harder time producing the same welds they did when they peaked. I only say this cause you say your a master welder, and I of course asume your older, and haven't meet many over the age of 50 that can see that well. I know they have corrective lenses for welding and such, but I found alot of people that should don't even use them cause of pride. Now I work in the oil field and see pipe welding, and all kinds of welding that my life is relying on daily, and I have to think if I could have done it the same or better. Now I can produce welds good enough to have what I need and be safe, and I do take all things into consideration. If I can I will put up some similar welds to what my hitch will be done with. I plan on using 1/8 and 3/32 7018 on DC. I have personally seen some of the most ghetto welding on gooseneck hitches and I know i can do better. I am gonna run bolts where I should and not weld on the frame of the truck. Having a family and house, and vehicles, ect that I worked hard to earn, I would not want to lose any of it in a lawsuit, and will only allow a 100% done hitch to be installed. You ever go to your local RV store to see the highschool drop outs installing 5th wheel hitches that 20,000 campers going across the states will be hooked up to. Now I understand they don't make the hitches themselves, but the fact that they could miss or forget something, cause they smoked to much grass that morning doesn't ease my mind about having the work done by someone else cause they can take the blame. I don't want to have it come apart in the first place.

  7. #7
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Quote Originally Posted by jfive View Post
    You ever go to your local RV store to see the highschool drop outs installing 5th wheel hitches that 20,000 campers going across the states will be hooked up to. Now I understand they don't make the hitches themselves, but the fact that they could miss or forget something, cause they smoked to much grass that morning doesn't ease my mind about having the work done by someone else cause they can take the blame. I don't want to have it come apart in the first place.
    my $.02....

    First off - you type like a high school drop out. Have you ever heard of formatting? Stream of consciousness is very difficult to pull off, and your not even close...

    Second, you (like all the others out there that think they are master welders) need to remember the liability aspect of doing this. When someone takes their truck to a local RV distributor, they are installing an engineered product with instructions on proper placement and recommended installation points. They don't just slap a hitch on... So if something breaks there is a long line of individuals and companies that can be held responsible. The companies that design and sell these products have engineers with 4+ years of upper level education, not an idiot with a 110V cracker box from harbor freight who works as a hand in the oil patch.....

    If your hitch breaks, and injures someone get ready to spend 6-12 months of your life in litigation from everybody even remotely involved in the potential accident. If something happens be prepared to drive a geo metro for the rest of your life because all of your money will be going to those that were injured. You should also consult your insurance company and ask them about coverage on a hitch you built your self and whether your insurance covers you - odds are it doesn't.

    You need to listen to others like DSW who have worlds of knowledge on these subjects. Have you done any analysis on the loads that will be placed throughout the hitch to determine where the weak points are, or are you just laying beads to "make it strong"?

    Besides, your garage isn't even set up with the appropriate welder basics!! you have a 5 gallon bucket holding up the tongue of your grater blade, and a log holding up the body...

    ...facepalm....
    Last edited by smokin_dodge; 02-10-2012 at 12:59 PM.

  8. #8
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Quote Originally Posted by smokin_dodge View Post
    Besides, your garage isn't even set up with the appropriate welder basics!! you have a 5 gallon bucket holding up the tongue of your grater blade, and a log holding up the body...

    ...facepalm....
    Before you give someone advice on writing, maybe you should use spell check. What is a grater blade? I have access to things I don't have, and allthough I may use a 5 gallon bucket to hold up the rear blade. It worked for the moment to make sure it all lined up right. Do you know what a grader is or what it looks like. Being an equipment operator for over 13 years, I do and this is not a grater blade as you would call it. I took what he said very serious, and understand that he is older and probubly wiser, but to make a broad statement from what little he knows about me isn't fair. The whole "one time this guy had a trailer fall apart and hit a ups truck so you shouldn't" isn't fair either. There are how many people tied up in court right now do to welding there own stuff. Don't give advice on "one time this happened to this one person". I don't think I am a master welder. I plan on taking years to get where I want, but where did you or DSW start. If you didn't do things on your own at my age you wouldn't be where you are today, so stop trying to hold people back, and instead give them good advice, like I would change this or brace that, or something useful.

  9. #9
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Quote Originally Posted by jfive View Post
    What is a grater blade?
    I should have used a "d", but looks just like a grader blade to me. By using a "t" - it is the equivalent to a cheese grater.
    http://www.google.com/products/catal...ed=0CGEQ8wIwAQ
    Quote Originally Posted by jfive View Post
    Being an equipment operator for over 13 years
    Here is some advice: stick to what you know, and let the pro's do the welding when it comes to welding onto a vehicle frame.
    Quote Originally Posted by jfive View Post
    probubly
    do you mean probably? I mistakenly inserted a "t" where there should have been a "d", but I know for a fact there isn't a "u" in probably.
    Quote Originally Posted by jfive View Post
    but where did you or DSW start
    While I cannot speak for DSW, I do admire his knowledge and work that is posted and for the most part agree with his views. I myself hold a Bachelors degree in Mechanics and Fabrication, and while I hold no current certifications, have been tested multiple times in order to graduate on the theory and fundamentals of proper weldments and structures.
    Quote Originally Posted by jfive View Post
    welding there own stuff
    There refers to a location, an adverb; i.e. the chair over there
    Their refers to ownership, a possessive pronoun; i.e. it is their chair over there
    They're refers to one's location, a conjunction; i.e. they're in their chair over there

    I will admit that in the past my spelling and grammar has been questionable, but I believe if we all try real hard, we can kick this bad spelling/grammar kick our country is on.

    And finally some advice, I would advise that you re-evaluate your decision to use this device mounted to your truck, and instead seek use of a tractor with a proper 3-point system. they have been around for a long time and for the most part all the kinks are worked out of the system.

  10. #10
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    I understand your only trying to help, and you have good points. I am not gonna teach english anytime soon, and don't think its that important for what I have in the works. I excelled at math, not english. Probably a good thing for a welder on the side anyways. I eventually want to do welding on the side when I get all the tools and finish getting certified. I have worked for small companys where when something metal breaks you fix it yourself. So thats part of why I went into welding classes. I have welded on and off for the last 15 or so years. First learned to stick weld as a kid from my cousin that was working in a guys fab shop. Should have stuck with it, but gave up and didn't really get back into it until I had a small amount of welding training in autoshop in highschool. That was only mig welding, but found I picked it up pretty good. Then for 10 years I really only did mig welding for work and some stick. I wanted to learn stick, mig, and tig so I took all three classes at our college. Did good at all three. Had a GPA of 3.67 and no one did any better in my classes. Not saying I did the best as I had 2nd year students doing certification welds while we did first year welding. I was the only kid in my mig class that got thru all of my joints and was able to move on to dual shield which was a 2nd year class. Only got to do it for two weeks, but still I was proud of getting thru all the welds and being able to do more advanced welding. I just want to stick up for myself as a welder in training, and in no way am I telling you what to do or not to do, and I ask that you only give advice such as what you would do differant. As far as the three point attachment, its not my idea. I stole it from the plowing forum. A company makes the three point attachment to go into the reciever, where you buy the rear blade and hook it up without making anything. I just saw the pictures, and made everything myself. It works and it was alot cheaper than even a small gas snowblower. My driveway is pretty huge and would take all night to do with anything small. I did what I had to so that my wife can get out of the driveway to get to nurse classes without waiting for a few hours for me or someone else to do the driveway. It works rather well, and since I don't have the tractor my dad normally lends me, I now can do it myself with my own equipment rather than depending on someone else to do it for me. Just the kinda person I am. Kinda like that Ronald Reagan quote from above.

  11. #11
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Quote Originally Posted by jfive View Post
    I have been researching doing this, and haven't found much, but finally came up with a design based off one I found that looked to be the best one. I know most would say just get a B&W and I did, and gonna take the ball out and reuse the hitch for another truck down the road or sell it. Here is the one I am using as a base design. http://www.dieselplace.com/forum/sho...d.php?t=319152
    If the upload works theres a paint drawing of my basic plan minus 5/16 braces on the reciever. Main plate is 6" 5/8 flatbar, and the frame braces are 3in by 5in 5/16 that will be bolted to the frame and flatbar with 5/8" grade 8 bolts. I know this is about 140.00 in material, and the BW is only 390.00 or so, but that takes the fun out of making things yourself that you can. I feel like I need to get the most out of welding school by making as manything myself as I can. I am really surprised to find that no one on here has tried to make there own hitch, and I don't mean screwing a ball to a piece of flat sheet and then bolting that to the bed. LOL

    I'm not going to comment on whether or not you or anyone else should make your own hitch or not, but I want to comment on the design shown in the link you attached. Regardless of if it holds up or not, that dude's crude hitch devalued that truck way more than what a good aftermarket hitch would have cost. I'm talking specifically about the size of the hole cut out of the bed and the fact that the ball&hitch are in fixed position and everything is welded in place. If he had to sell this truck, there are a lot of people who'd be really turned off by his modifications.

    I have no idea what your vehicle is worth and I don't care to know but the example shown is not something I would mimic on anything.
    Last edited by Chuck; 02-10-2012 at 04:46 PM.
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  12. #12
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    I agree. I am putting mine in a truck i paid 2000.00 for. I am also using all the hints from the other people about braces. I wasn't gonna weld it to the frame anyways, but I do like the ideas that others came up with to make it better. I have a 2003 dodge I am selling that the guy had a "professional install" and they welded it to the frame since the gooseneck hitch they used was a universal kit and rather than come up with something to attach it to the frame, they welded it. The welds are definately not up to par either. Mine will be removeable, and the ball will be able to flip too.

  13. #13
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    It's doable.

    I don't favor plates, although I do have a hitch on my Dodge which is just some flat plate on top of the bed floor, bolted to the frame web via L shaped pieces. This was something I threw together many years ago before I started welding. It's seen a lot of heavy service.

    Now I favor a beam setup. A set of small beams (channel) carrying the load to the frame, stiffened for fore and aft movement by a web of plate. Again, the whole thing is bolted to the frame. This was the method I used to build the gooseneck hitch for my 1 ton. It was a build spread over a bazillion threads, and I can't really find them anymore.

    A simple piece of 3" channel will carry much more weight than the thickest plate (within reason 1/2-3/4" plate). Only place you really need thick plate is where the ball mounts, in order to resist shear.

    All of the welding, in the case of a pickup truck, can be done off-truck so no out of position welding is required. You'll have to remove the bed just to install it. This lends itself to beginners skills.

    When drilling holes in the frame,, remember to drill them in the neutral section of the beam (the center, or as close as possible to the center), anything above/below the neutral position will either be in tension or compression. These areas are subject to fatigue cracking. Not saying you can't drill near the flanges (reasonably near), but if possible keep the holes to the center part.

    As a beginner, I'd reccomend stick welding all the way. No MIG or Flux Core (simply not reliable enough in the hands of someone not used to setting parameters). Stick welds at least have decent penetration even if they sometimes look somewhat lousy. 7018 would be my choice, as it's charpy rated (impact resistant in cold weather), and seismic rated I believe (remember the truck is moving all the time, and flexing).

    If you're a responsible person, and not a haphazard idiot, you should do fine. Remember your responsibility to others when you build something that's gonna be somewhat dangerous if done incorrectly. There's no shame in grinding out bad welds and doing them over. I do it. I'm constantly thinking of consequences.

    The design is crucial, the prep work and fitup is crucial, etc. You'll find that you spend very little time actually running the welder, the real work is prior to the final weldup.

    I didn't start out doing this kind of project, it was years before I felt confident enough to do this kind of job. And I had some very valuable help from some people who took me under their wing to rectfy some bad habits I'd developed.
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  14. #14
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    I tried to get the beginning of it done today to post some pictures so one could have an idea of my skill level, but my friends plasma needs a new tip and they were closed by the time we realized it. Cutting a 3x3 square hole in the middle of the flatbar to put the 3x3 .250 wall tubing through and gonna have an extra 1/2 above for additional plate, like the B&W has. Here is a drawing of my intended braces on the bottom side. All thick lines are the braces except for the ball sleeve and the pin guide. Thanks for the advice farmersamn. I always use stick when I can, and 7018 is mainly the rod I use.

  15. #15
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    I agree with Chuck. That is a very poor example.
    Last edited by tanglediver; 02-11-2012 at 12:11 AM.
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    I spent a week on google trying to find a design that looked good, and came up with nothing but crap. Most where like you guys would say "putting people at risk", and I do care about the other people, and not to mention my wife and kid who will ride with me. I assure you it will be plenty strong, and won't come apart ever. The brackets I made for my last truck held up great when it was still a 5th wheel, and I don't plan on the gooseneck being any differant. Keep in mind this is a 1999 wonderer lite 22.5 5th wheel at 3800 lbs.

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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    I have to wonder if all the welding done to the ball in the link posted affects it's strength.
    Leo

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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Quote Originally Posted by NVW View Post
    I have to wonder if all the welding done to the ball in the link posted affects it's strength.
    I've seen it done quite a bit. Usually in addition to to the nut which holds it in place.

    Zoom in on the pic, and you'll see that it's been done here (there's a "zoom tool")

    http://www.thehitchstore.com/goosene...d26jp3gdv812g5
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  19. #19
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Quote Originally Posted by farmersamm View Post
    I've seen it done quite a bit. Usually in addition to to the nut which holds it in place.

    Zoom in on the pic, and you'll see that it's been done here (there's a "zoom tool")

    http://www.thehitchstore.com/goosene...d26jp3gdv812g5
    I've seen it as well but have not done it myself.
    Leo

  20. #20
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Still haven't started yet besides cutting pieces, but I did do some welding in the garage today just for practice. Had to add some legs to a small wood stove I am building and thought I would show you what my welds look like up close. Not saying its perfect, but pretty dang good if ya ask me. Done in horizontal position with 7018 3/32 at approx. 92 amps DC.

  21. #21
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    What program did you use for those drawings?
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Paint. nothing special. Sometimes you got to zoom in 400% to make things come out perfect.

  23. #23
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    Bead looks real nice. The only "bad" thing I see is that you stopped at the corners. You will want to wrap the welds around the corners rather than stop like you did. This eliminates places where cracks want to start.
    .



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  24. #24
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    I did do that on a few of them. For the most part I would run it through the next corner so I wouldn't have to tie into it. A few of them I stoped to early. thanks for the compliment. In the past I wouldn't show any of my stick welds to anyone.

  25. #25
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    Re: Homemade Gooseneck Hitch.

    IMHO, the gooseneck hitch is the least of your worries. If your truck is about 20' long and the blade extends behind it 10' or so approx. Then you would need about 30 feet of clear ground/apron ahead of your pull just to move the snow/pile it out of your way to the edge of a road. And you've got to release that pile and get free... only way to go is ahead. This will take some room to use. Angled blade throwing a row off to the side would help if you could see what's going on at the rear while you drive.

    The second thing I wonder, because I'm older and stiffer in the neck is how you will monitor the blade as you work. The back window, 1/2 fogged up, with the gear and tailgate in the way? Lites? you'll need a lot at night. Doesn't look too easy. I realize you have a lot of grading experience, I have not. so these items may be minor to you. I would prefer either a front blade with angle adjust or a small tractor with a box blade and a FL..

    Do you already have a hydraulic pump and tank mounted in the engine area to run the pick up cylinder.

    B&W makes a frame mounted gooseneck hitch, EZ to mount Ez to use.

    Paragraphs would make your posts easier to read.

    Nice 7018 run
    Last edited by PapaLion; 02-14-2012 at 04:13 PM.
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