Slant or head to head?

We’re trying to decide between two trailers. DH and I are at a disagreement between them.

1999 Sooner 4h head to head, stored inside
2013 Exiss 4h slant. Good sized short walk, could convert dressing room to sleeping space (nothing else).

Both are all aluminum, both low miles, good condition. Both have hay racks.

We have small horses/ponies in general but one 16.2h big bodied mare.

I prefer the Head to head but am concerned w/the extra length and potential ramp weight. I like that you can access any horse at any time from the center section, and could lead in/back into the stall and unload using the side ramp—if needed

DH prefers the slant because of the potential to convert dressing room to sleeping space (it’s AC ready etc), the smaller length, and he feels like the slant is more suited to our horses. I’m more familiar w/a slant because that’s what we’ve used for years. I did ship horses in a head to head as a kid though.

Our tow vehicle can handle either, and the price difference between them is just a couple grand.

How do I make this decision? What am I overlooking?

I have never, in the middle of things, said “damn, I wish this trailer was a slant”.

But I have many times in the middle of things, said “%#%^%, I wish this weren’t a slant”.

My personal opinion which is worth very little, is that horses do not enjoy slants. I have had some come off a long trailer ride sore in a slant, but not in the straight load or box stall. Something about the long distance at an angle, and all that torque while moving, seems to make them sore in their neck and shoulder. I also do not think the average horse fits well in a slant, YMMV.

It comes down to personal preference though… Having a dressing room sure is nice.


I should clarify, the h2h does have a dressing room, just not of the same size that the slant does. We also usually only haul 3 horses at a time and use the extra spot for hay, etc, so having a huge dressing room isn’t a must for me but DH thinks finishing it would be nice. Without getting into details, at this point in our lives/kids lives i don’t see it being useful for us.

And yes. I agree entirely w/your sentiment. Once I watched DH crawl between 3 horses to get to the first loaded in a slant to address an issue… don’t like that one bit.

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What I say in all - which trailer is best - threads - What one person loves another hates so none of us can decide for you, we can only tell you what we like.

I have owned both slant and straight load. I prefer straight load.

I would love a 4horse head to head (though I have no reason to own such a thing).
Easy access to the individual horses. Easy hay bag replacement. Easy loading and unloading.

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Are they both the same overall length, including from the drop to the axles?

I don’t believe so. I’ll have to ask DH. Can you help me understand your question and it’s implications?

Have you made sure that either of those trailers will work with our truck? That might make the decision for you. The newer trucks are much higher than the older trucks and the older goosenecks will not clear the bed of the truck.

Yes… we have a 2010 dodge 3500dually and my husband drives a semi for a living and my husband is really good with this stuff. Me; not so much. The head to head actually has the same type of hitch as our camper, so in my mind not having to change hitches is a bonus.

But I’ll definitely have him double check. The trailers are 1999 (head to head) and 2013 (slant). We previously hauled a 2007 exiss 4h slant with no issues.

Long trailer = harder to drive.

It’s not the overall length that matters, it’s the distance from the hitch to the axles that makes the difference.

If the H2H has a 5th wheel, that would make my decision for me - taking those things in and out of the truck is a real pain in the ass. Being able to just leave it in there - sold!

He said the head to head is longer.

Figures. Even to the axles? Sometimes the longer trailers will move the axles up a bit because they can afford to.

It does have a 5th wheel, but it’s compatible with our camper so not having to swap it out might be ok. DH does the bulk of the hitching/driving and he drives a semi w/2 trailers for a living.

It’s the rare occasion that I drive I’m concerned about.

He’s looking at it in a few hours. I’ll have him look, I’m sure he will anyway. It’s the trailer my pony was hauled in when I was a kid when it was brand new…. I’m familiar with it but not in the technical respects

He says he hopes the axles aren’t more forward, and believes they are not forward based on pics.

More forward will make your turns easier. The effective length of the trailer is to the axles, as far as driving is concerned. As long as the majority of the weight is on the axle of the truck (which can easily be accomplished by putting the bigger horses up front), it will not suffer stability issues.

Have you driven a gooseneck before?

Also, what does “ac ready” mean? The dome vent is standard, but there is additional bracing that needs to be installed before an AC unit can be put in.

I have, yes, (4h exiss slat, identical to the one we are looking at) but DH is the primary driver. I prefer not to drive the trailer but in an emergency. I definitely need more practice.

DH doesn’t like how our camper pulls with the axels moved more forward.

“AC ready” no idea. Just what I was told by DH. This is his department…. I assume he knows what he’s taking about since he’s done it before. :slightly_smiling_face:

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Eh, campers are notoriously imbalanced and top-heavy. A horse trailer shouldn’t have an issue - at least mine doesn’t. I’m not talking 4’ or anything, but even a foot forward in axle placement can make a big difference.

My trailer is 26’ on the deck (33.5 overall), and it requires some skillful driving. My original plan made the trailer a 28’ but the dealer talked me out of it - I’m SO GLAD that he did.

Driving a live load is not the same as driving a camping trailer. I have never, ever, wished my straight load was a slant load. I have WB’s, and they are not huge, but they are really cramped in a slant load, to the extent that getting them out of the end stall can be really difficult. I have found that the horses get sore in their right shoulders and in the right sides of their necks in slant loads, but not in straight loads. Even the Friesian mare was cramped in a slant load. I have seen people run into issues unloading in slant loads when the first horse refuses to unload, and then the others on the trailer are stuck in the trailer…

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Good to know. DH gripes about how the camper hauls every time. Hates how it’s not heavy enough on the truck and the weight is at the back.

I talked to my husband some more and he doesn’t love the camper hitch, and even if the trailer/camper can use the same hitch, he still may opt to covert it because the current camper hitch has more play than he likes.

For the sake of the horses I am leaning to the head to head but I think dh prefers the slant.

Either way I need more practice at driving and backing. Especially if we go with the longer one.

From what I can tell, it’s probably about 28’ long, but that’s with a Google search.

That is a PITA trailer length, honestly. How often do you haul your horses around?