Alternatives to the traditional 'panel van'...

A discussion I have been meaning to post for some time - who else out there uses 'something different' - eg NOT a panel van/trailer combination as their works vehicle?

Ours is this:

Two custom made metal tool stores (one of which holds a 21" Lawnflite Pro, with two knapsack sprayers and space for 50 litres of water and assorted chemicals (in bunded tray) above the engine end.

Other box contains virtually everything else hand tool wise.

All mounted on a dropside Iveco Daily with a tail lift - anyone that has owned/uses a Lawnflite Pro can probably understand the theory behind the tail lift. The tail lift will also lift the walk behind sprayer or the small ride on mower onto the bed of the truck too.

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  • Hi Adam,

    Im nearly 20years in the business, christ, and in my opinion the openback with high sides is a far better option for gardeners than the panel van with trailer. Coupled with a lockablebox behind the driver ,for the small tools e,g blowers, hedgertrimmers etc, it offers far more than just a covered storage space as the panel van does .Make the openback a tipper and your away with it. The amount of machinery you can carry is greater, its an extra trailer and you dont always have to drag a trailer around behind you; Here in Belgium that can be a real issue for parking in the cities in the morning.A colleague over here has a sprinter with all of the above, and I can honeslty say that I can barely to talk to him anymore so green is my jealousy :-). I dont have a pic but take it from me its the daddy. unfortunately new it would set you back a fair penny. I think his was about  50,000 pounds or there about.It'll be the next vechicle for me.

  • PRO

    I'm in the same boat regarding looking for a new vehicle but feel there is nothing out there that ticks all the boxes, please point it out if I'm missing something!

    I'd be really interested to see what others have gone for?

    We currently run a transit for day to day maintenance, mowing, hedge cutting etc. We do have a 8x5 trailer and CS100 chipper for bigger jobs. Ideally what I'm after is something transit van sized with secure lockable doors for mowers hedge cutters etc but that can tip? The standard transit crew cab tippers offer no security for mowers etc and it's then a two man lift rather than a ramp to get the mowers in and out due to the increased floor height.

    Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated, thinking a custom build may be the only option!

  • sorry I really don't get what advantage that gives you?
    You've got the same floor area, it must be a squeeze fitting everything in and surely a tail lift drastically reduces your net carrying weight.
  • I run a Hilux double cab pick up....for 90% of what I do I can run around in just this,,,trailer goes on for Hi Step major plus extension or the Honda 536 roller...exerything goes in a certain way and works pretty good for me I have the rear seat out and made a tool box for odds and sods, tree loppers pole saw long handled gratf and post rammer either go on top or in the cab as and when I need them...

    But in the back I've got Hedge cutter, Long arm Hedge cutter + extension, loop handle and cow horn strimmers, Honda Flymo, chain saw, back pack blower, fuel, all my hand tools, lge tarp/1 ton sack etc...trailer box carrys all the straps/locks hitch lock wheel brace etc and I've just mounted a spare wheel behind it too 

    Surprising what you can carry when you put your mind to it ;-)







  • Adam we are construction not maintenance. But we use a crewcab transit quite happily. There's no back seats though and the doors on the back are solid. That's all racked out for tools and fixings etc. All that goes on the back tool wise is the wacker, mixer and rotovator.
    We do run as a team of 3 though so there is always that pair of hands to lift stuff on or off.

    Iv just had it sign written so ill post photos to that latter.
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