Side Dump Trailer

The invention of the side dump trailer changed the way construction crews did site prep, cutting the time it took to haul loads in half. While many companies may offer some version of the side dump trailer, only one can be credited with its invention and perfection. In 1994, Ralph Rogers, founder, and president of Side Dump Industries (SDI) filed the first patent for a dump trailer that would allow the operator to dump the contents of the trailer on either side of their vehicle.

After reinventing the wheel, SDI didn’t stop there. Their team of engineers continuously made improvements to the original model over the years, making sure their side dump trailers had features that other companies couldn’t offer. That dedication to constant improvement is what has firmly cemented SDI as one of the best side dump trailers in the industry.

Kelly Knodel of Knodel Contractors in Freeman, SD, relies on the side dump trailers from SDI for a number of things in his day-to-day work. A portion of his side dump trailer fleet runs out of rock quarries, hauling materials for concrete and road paving projects. Another portion assists the demolition and cleans upside of his business.

“What I can haul in one load would take a contractor running end dumps up to four dump trucks alone,” said Knodel in an interview with “Plus, my drivers can place product – whether it’s dirt, gravel or rock – exactly where it needs to be. It can all be done on the run. We don’t have to stop, scrape out the tub, then move the material where it’s supposed to be.”

The largest dump angle of any model on the market is something that sets SDI trailers apart. While other trailers will allow for a 42-degree dump angle, SDI trailers can achieve an impressive 50-degree dump angle. SDI’s trailers use flat bottom tubs that allow them to set the tub inside the frame rails instead of on top of them, drastically improving their center of gravity. This also allows the trailer to reach the 50-degree dump angle that in turn cleans out better and throws the material further away from the trailer so you’re not pulling your trailer through the load you just dumped.

Balance is an issue for many side dump trailers, with the biggest complaint being the tub can fall off its saddle when dumping. To address that problem, SDI designed a self-centering saddle that keeps the tub centered at all times, even when dumping on uneven ground. As of today, SDI produces the only side dump trailer on the market with self-centering saddles. To further ensure that the tub stays put, SDI trailers include tub locks, which were designed to capture the tub pivot tube and prevent any chance of the tub slipping from its saddle no matter the dump direction.

SDI wants their customers to get the most life possible out of their side dump trailers, so they start with the highest quality materials they can find. Their tubs are made of Grade 100 Steel, which is durable and strong, but allows for the bending and twisting necessary to unload without cracking under pressure. To further ensure that the tub lasts as long as possible, SDI recently added a center pivot to alleviate the tub flex and pressure on the corners.

SDI knows that good tires are critical for a well-functioning side dump trailer, so they outfit everyone with Dunlop SP 348 16-ply tires with an H rating and 20/32” of tread depth. Some competitors offer upgrades to the Dunlop SP 160 tire for an additional fee. However, the standard SDI tires have a stronger side wall, wider tread width and a deeper tread that extends the life of the tire. In addition to saving you time on the work site, SDI trailers will save time spent on maintenance and repairs. Many parts of the SDI side dump trailer are bolted, rather than welded, which makes them easier and less expensive to maintain, adjust and replace.

It should come as no surprise the company that patented the side dump trailer would have the best product on the market. What sets SDI apart is the fact that they’ve never stopped improving upon their original idea. The drive to continually fine-tune every component is what will keep people buying this productivity-boosting side dump trailer for years to come.

Side Dump Industries
729 West 21st Street
South Sioux City, NE 68776

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *