There is some debate about the type of timber fitted to these trailer when they were manufactured, although “Eastern Hardwood” is generally specified. It is believed that some were fitted with pine boards and many used Keruing, which is a hardwood with very fine grain which is almost rot proof. Nowadays Keruing is primarily used as half lap boards on lorry floors. This is generally available at a cost of around £12 per metre length for boards that are about 135mm wide, with 125mm cover. These boards are usually supplied in random lengths.
The problem is that the boards are too narrow to get the required height on the sides out of 3 boards. Also, being half lap, the boards are only restrained on one edge and they tend to curl.
Fergietrailershop has managed to find an importer who can supply planed square edge boards which are nominally 5 ¾” wide and 7/8” thick. These will then machine up to do the job perfectly.
Sides, front and back (the vertical bits) need to be tongue and groove so the water can drain out. Floorboards have a groove on both sides, which is easier to machine. Then a loose strip of keruing is slid into each groove to complete the job. So, the machining is not beyond a reasonably competent DIYer who wants to enjoy the restoration ‘journey’. We are happy to offer advice to help you do the job and also save some money.
We can supply the square edged keruing boards for about £850. The machining can be done with a router with cutter which is available new at around £100, for those with a bit of woodworking capability. Alternatively we can supply the fully machined boards as a ready to fit kit for £1150
A very cost effective solution is to use Larch boards. Larch is a softwood but is recommended for external use (it is the timber of choice for fence posts). A set of Larch boards for a 3 ton trailer top will cost around £500. The down side is that larch contains quite big knots and has an open grain, which does not please everyone, but it is a good way of getting the job done.
We have put together a set of instructions on ’how to re-board a Ferguson trailer’. Doing the second one is much easier than doing the first one and we are happy to pass that knowledge on, whether you buy your boards from Fergietrailshop, or source your own. It is quite daunting when you do the final cuts on the first few boards. So just ask!