Hot Shot Trailers
PJ Trailers is known for building premium gooseneck trailers for the hotshot industry. Hot shot truckers have increased needs for reliability, durability, comfort, and versatility. We created a guide for customers designing their next hot shot trailer that outlines the most popular specifications & options.
By far the most common length for gooseneck hot shot trailers is 40 feet. On a PJ Gooseneck this gives you a total length of 49 feet. Longer trailers might give you the ability to haul more freight, but can be restrictive depending on the state laws.
Deckover Hot Shot Trailers
If you want tandem dual running gear and a full 102" deck you will have to go with deckover trailer ( FD, LD, & SD models). We have a low profile gooseneck with a 33" deck height (LD model). The low profile uses a pierce beam design to run cross-members through the main frame of the trailer dropping the deck height around 5 inches. Our standard flatdeck with duals has a 38" deck height and is still very popular for hot shot trailers.
Low Boy Hot Shot Trailers
Some operators want their trailer to be as low as possible and opt for a single wheel "low boy" style trailer ( C8 & B8 models). These trailers have a 28" deck height with a 83" wide deck (C8) and 102" wide deck with drive over fenders (B8). These trailers offer a lower center of gravity, can haul low clearance vehicles, and can haul taller loads. Tradeoffs include "tire scrubbing" when making tight turns on triple axle trailers. Also, since the trailer has fenders it can limit the types of equipment and cargo than can be hauled.
One of the most important decisions you will make when ordering your hot shot trailer is the axle rating. Our most popular axle rating is 12,000 lbs with axles available in 10k, 12k, 15k, & 16k ratings. We also have some hot shot customers that opt for triple 7k or 8k axles on a "low-boy" style gooseneck ( C8 & B8 models).
The vast majority of 10-15 ton trailers use electric brakes and they work well trailers used in low-medium mileage applications in areas with flat terrain. For high mileage applications, most dealers will recommend hydraulic disc brakes. We typically do not recommend standard electric trailer brakes for hot shot trailers.
Electric over Hydraulic Disc Brakes
Due to the high miles and varying topography hot shot trailers see, we believe electric over hydraulic disc brakes are the only way to go.
Electric over hydraulic brakes use your typical electric brake controller to control a hydraulic disc brake system that resides solely on the trailer. Hydraulic disc brakes will stop faster, last longer, and are cheaper to maintain for high mileage trailers. All of our axles from 7k to 12k can be ordered with hydraulic disc brakes with hydraulic drums available on 15k axles.
One major advantage of air brakes is that if you ever have a leak or break in the air line, the brakes activate bringing you to a safe stop. Unlike electric over hydraulic disc brakes, the air brakes require an air supply from the tow vehicle. Air brakes are available on 10, 12k, & 16k, axles.
The most common suspension choice for hot shot trailers is your typical leaf spring with equalizer suspension. The leaf spring suspension is very durable, requires minimal maintenance, and is the most affordable suspension choice.
The Hutch 9700 suspension has become quite popular on hotshot and oilfield trailers. The Hutch suspension is more durable than your typical spring suspension offering torque arms allowing for adjustment, million mile bushings, and maintenance free hub fasteners.
We also offer air ride suspension on our hot shot trailers. The air ride suspension makes for a smoother ride for the driver and the cargo. With air ride you can also raise and lower the deck of the trailer for loading & unloading. Air ride also gives you the ability order the lift axle option to reduce tire wear and save on tolls when hauling empty.
Blackwood Rubber Infused Lumber
Blackwood is a wooden lumber product with a rubber insert that is infused throughout the center of the board. Blackwood solves several age old trailer lumber problems.
Douglas Fir makes excellent trailer decking as it's known for being very dimensionally stable, strong, & having good rot resistance.
Rough Oak Floor
Rough oak floor is our most durable floor option. We always recommend using rough oak for any trailer that will be hauling steel tracked vehicles.
Monster Ramps gives you excellent versatility for loading vehicles/equipment in varying widths. Cargo can be stored on top of the ramps. Ramps are spring assisted to help raise them from both the deck and ground.
This is a 94" wide tail that is hydraulically powered up & down. This back saving design makes prepping the trailer to be loaded/unloaded as easy as possible. The tail rotates a full 180 degrees to lay flush to the deck of the trailer, allowing cargo to be loaded on top of the tail.
Center Pop-up Dovetail
The center pop-up gives you the ability to use your dovetail to load equipment, then raise the center pop-up platform to store cargo (bales, pallets, etc). The ramps are spring assisted to help raise them from the ground.
Straight Deck with 8' Slide-in Ramps
Our straight deck with slide-in ramps includes two 8 ft ramps that slide in ramp holders from the rear of the bumper. The load angle with these ramps 20° & 23° for the LD & FD respectively. One thing to keep in mind is that these ramps will not be suitable for loading equipment or vehicles over 9000 lbs.
The hydraulic dovetail uses hydraulic power to raise and lower the tail at the touch of a button. The load angle for the tail is 15 degrees for the LY and 17 degrees for the FY. The dovetail has 10,000 lbs lift capacity and 4,000 lbs hauling capacity from the center of the tail towards the axle.
Jost jacks have quickly become one of the most popular two speed trailer jacks for hot shotters. They have a patented internal gear box that protects the gearing from abuse and minimizes water intrusion. They have a 50k lifting capacity per pair, spring loaded drop legs, and a 5 year warranty.
Two Speed Bulldog Jacks
Our two speed Bulldog jacks make cranking loads both faster and easier. They have a 10k lift capacity and 12k static capacity per jack. The also include a spring loaded drop legs for easy retraction.
The ultimate jack setup for a hotshot trailer is our hydraulic jack system. These jacks make raising and lowering your trailer as simple as pressing a button. Hydraulic jacks save you valuable time and energy. The entire system runs from a KTI pump, powered by an Interstate Deep Cycle battery.
Toolboxes & Storage
Gooseneck Riser Toolbox
Offers additional storage for chains, straps, binders, gloves, and more in an area that is typically wasted. The Box faces the rear of the gooseneck and is accessible from the trailer deck.
Side Mount Toolbox
Side mount toolboxes offer excellent storage that can be locked. The boxes are sealed and available in 45" and 72" widths.
Where to Buy
Where to buy
We recommend when ordering your trailer that you work with a PJ Trailers Dealer that has experience with the hot shot industry. These dealers will be able to make recommendations based on your specific needs to get you the perfect trailer. They also have significant experience with other drivers and likely share what has worked best for them.