A farm truck is an indispensable tool on any farm. It’s a real daily workhorse able to help you out in endless ways, from hauling trailers to carrying equipment. In this article, we will look at how to make a truck into a farm truck. Let’s take a look.
What You'll Learn Today
- What makes a good farm truck?
- What’s the best truck for a farm?
- What trucks do farmers use?
- What type of service truck makes the best farm truck?
- What to consider when choosing a truck to make into a farm truck
- What accessories do you need to make a truck into a farm truck?
- How much will a farm truck cost?
What makes a good farm truck?
A good farm truck needs to be solidly built, powerful enough to deal with rough terrain, and able to pull a heavy load.
Many farmers prefer diesel engines because they are long-lasting, reliable, and more fuel-efficient than their gasoline counterparts.
You may need to pay a bit more for a diesel truck, but it more than makes up for its slightly higher cost.
When deciding which truck is right for you, you’ll first need to consider what you want the truck to do. If you grow crops, you’ll need to carry tools to make running repairs to machinery, or if you mainly raise animals, you’ll need a truck that can pull a trailer, that could be with a conventional hook-up or a gooseneck.
Keep in mind that if your pickup truck has a gooseneck connection, it can affect the items you carry in the back of your vehicle while towing a trailer.
Another consideration is two or four-wheel drive. I think trucks with only a two-wheel-drive option are useless for farm use. If you encounter even a bit of mud, snow, or ice, then it’s game over.
Having a four-wheel drive, or a 2 x 4-wheel drive where you can swap manually between the two, is far better and enables you to get out of any sticky or slippery situations a lot more easily and safely.
What’s the best truck for a farm?
Getting a heavy-duty truck is often the best option for a farm. They take more long-term punishment than lighter vehicles and should outlast them.
Buying a new heavy-duty truck will cost a lot, but there are some good second-hand options on the market.
- Ford F-series – Super Duty
- Nissan HardBody
- 2018 Toyota Tacoma
- Nissan Titan S
- Chevrolet Silverado 2500 or 3500 HD
- Chevrolet Colorado WT
- Ram 2500 HD
What trucks do farmers use?
Ford and Chevrolet pickup trucks have long battled it out to be top of the market. Ram has always tended to fall behind, but recently, the brand has gained more traction in the farm truck market.
Another growing trend is for farmers to buy service trucks. They come in a wide variety of styles that may suit the type of farming you do.
What’s great about service trucks is they come with lots of useful accessories and handy storage options. This makes it easier to keep all of your tools and equipment safe and readily available when you need them.
Many can haul heavier loads than conventional pickups, which is invaluable if you need to pull water or fuel tanks to far-flung places on your property.
What type of service truck makes the best farm truck?
What mainly sets a service truck apart from a regular pickup is the truck bed. Choosing a type that best suits your farming activities is a great way to save money fitting out a regular truck.
Here are just some of the options available:
We’re all pretty familiar with a flatbed truck. They can carry around plenty of equipment or be used for towing trailers.
By accessorizing a flatbed, you can make it even more useful. Toolboxes, d-rings for securing loads, and trailer receivers are all great additions.
Many farms use gooseneck-type trailers and you’ll need a truck you can utilize to pull them.
On a factory-built gooseneck truck, when the gooseneck hook-up isn’t in use, it can usually be disconnected and stored safely out of the way. This means the truck is then usable in exactly the same way as a flatbed.
You can add accessories like saddle toolboxes to a truck with a gooseneck hook-up to make it more versatile while you’re towing.
Service Body Truck
A service body truck will come with extensive storage options, including mechanics drawers and gooseneck hook-ups. You can always add additional storage solutions and D-rings if necessary.
Although these can be more expensive than regular trucks, a mechanics truck fitted with a crane can be very useful under various circumstances.
If you regularly need to lift heavy equipment and require a lot of storage compartments to keep a wide variety of tools, then a mechanics truck could be a suitable option.
One downside may be weight, as they could get bogged down more easily in thick mud.
Before choosing your truck, take a good look around at what’s available and see if a repurposed service truck might suit your needs better than a standard one.
Whatever type you ultimately decide upon, you can always accessorize it!
What to consider when choosing a truck to make into a farm truck
To make the best choice when selecting a truck to make into a farm truck, you want to consider various things first. These include:
- Use – A truck that your activities will outgrow in a year or two may not be a good choice. If you’re going to invest in your truck by adding accessories and customizations, then you want it to last.
- Accessories – What do you want your truck to be equipped with already? A hook-up, storage compartments, a crane? By getting a truck that already has expensive-to-fit accessories in place you could save a significant amount of money.
- Body Material – What is most important to you? Strength, corrosion resistance, weight? For a strong body that can take a lot of abuse, steel is the body of choice. For a lightweight body, aluminum is less heavy as are composite materials, they are also highly corrosion-resistant.
- Horsepower – Keep in mind here that although you want a strong truck for pulling and carrying large payloads, the higher the horsepower the less fuel-efficient the truck will be.
- Insurance – If you need to drive your truck on the highway, you’ll need insurance to cover that. However, if you’re not going to take your vehicle off the farm, you’ll need a less expensive type of insurance cover.
- Length – Depending on what you need to carry in your truck, getting the right truck bed length may be important. For me, long beds are the only way to go, but you may be happy with a shorter one.
- People – It isn’t just tools and equipment you need to carry in your truck. There could be times when you need to take people in it too. If you’re going to use the truck to take kids to school, for instance, then that needs to be factored in, and you need enough seats!
- Storage – Make a list of the items you want to carry in your truck permanently and think about how they can be stored to make accessing them quick, easy, and safe. A well-organized truck is a pleasure, while tools crashing around loose in the back is not!
- Towing – The legalities around towing capacity must be adhered to for safety reasons. Don’t ever try to pull anything beyond the capacity of your vehicle. If you know what you’ll be towing will be heavy, get a truck built for the job.
What accessories do you need to make a truck into a farm truck?
The exact accessories you’ll want for your truck are going to depend upon your own specific requirements. As a general guide you could think about:
- Storage options including toolboxes and partitions
- A hook-up for a trailer
- All-terrain tires
- Heavy-duty suspension
- A Winch
- Bed liner
- Bed cover
- Running boards
- Tailgate step
In this video, you will see how a farmer has created his own useful storage solutions:
For more ideas on how to make a truck into a farm truck and how to stock it, look at our article – What Are Practical Upgrades For A Farm Truck.
How much will a farm truck cost?
There is no hard and fast answer to this, as the variables are significant. It will depend on the type of truck you choose, its age, the accessories fitted and so on.
As a guide, a new pickup will, on average, cost somewhere between $40,000 and $,80,000 but you could find a great deal on a used truck for a lot less.
However much it costs, buying a truck for your farm will be a considerable investment, but for the amount of use you’ll get from such a vehicle, it’s an investment worth making!
A well-accessorized truck can have almost endless uses around the farm. By getting a truck with all of the essential ingredients you’ll need, just a few simple upgrades can make a regular truck into your perfect farm truck.
If you’re handy, there’s no reason why you can’t build your storage and toolboxes made to measure for your exact requirements. This could save you a lot of money and ensure all items have a dedicated home.
Always having everything you need to hand and knowing exactly where to find it makes life on a farm a lot easier.
Even if you can’t make your own storage, there are plenty of options available on the market to turn your truck into your ideal farm truck.
To read more articles about farming and animals, look on our website.