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Thread: Teams with trailers -- how do you rent trucks?

  1. #1

    Teams with trailers -- how do you rent trucks?

    Our team got an 18-foot trailer last year, and we're looking for a place that will rent a truck to haul it. Unfortunately, everywhere we looked has strict age requirements. Hertz for one has a rule where nobody under 25 can even drive the car.

    I was wondering how other teams handle this.

    Dubious but possible plans we've considered:

    - Having someone over 25 sign the rental agreement and hope we don't get into an accident

    Things that probably won't work:

    - Faculty advisor drives (ours don't attend competitions)
    - Renting a smaller truck (trailer is too heavy)

  2. #2
    When I was competing we were able to rent a truck thru our university's motor pool department, which manages the school's police, maintenance, van pool, etc., vehicles. That way it was also covered by the school's insurance and risk management shenanigans.

    Our advisor helped put us in touch with who we needed to talk to in the motor pool office. We had to take a risk management driver safety course, which had limited times it was available, so if you're looking for a way to rent a truck immediately you'll need to find out how to make that fly right away.
    _______________________________________

    Northwestern Formula Racing Alum
    Head Engineer, Frame/Suspension 2006-2009

    My '73 Saab 99 Road Race Build

  3. #3
    Well you've certainly put the cart before the horse on this one! I hope the trailer was donated or something along those lines. But here's a few options things for you:

    I know for sure that regular enterprise truck rentals do not have a reciever, so even you you had someone sign the lease you'd be no further ahead. Their "commercial/truck" rentals may be different, but are more limited on rental locations.

    All u-haul trucks from pick-ups to box-vans have a class IV receiver and wiring, though I believe you are only supposed to tow u-haul trailers with them. You'd need to contact your local branch for more details. At least around me they rent to 18 yr olds no problem (that includes F-150s if you ever need cheap transportation for a day - but keep an eye on that odometer.)

    There are a few places in the mid-south (Oklahoma-Texas-Arizona-ish) that will rent 3/4 ton trucks with all the stuff you'd need to tow, but I'm not sure on prices and age restrictions (or their company name anymore.)

    Borrow one from a team member's parent or company.

    Buy one yourself for $700 and see how far it can go. Re-sell it later and try to break even. Or take it off some sweet jumps.

    P.S. Generally speaking with all rentals there is an additional charge if you have more than one driver.

    P.S.S. Generally speaking towing a university owned trailer with a non-university truck is a no-no with the university and insurance companies alike.
    Last edited by Alumni; 05-14-2014 at 06:31 PM.

  4. #4
    We hit that problem about 10 years ago. Thankfully, I was already 25+ then, so I ended up renting and driving the truck for a couple of years. If you have any graduate students about who are interested in building cars, even if only for fun, consider what they can bring to the team.

    Another core task I did was packing the truck - competition overlapped with final exams to the point that senior team members and leaders were often writing proctored exams at the hotel. I didn't have such competing demands, so I was basically pulling 18-hour days the week before competition. Basically my work was done come the dynamic events, which was great because come Thursday I was ready to die.

    A diverse team is a strong team - nothing wrong with finding people who are not 18-22 and seeing what they can do. I pulled a 102-hr work week on FSAE when I was 30 since we wisely decided to put a key body manufacturing deadline on the same week as the cost report. I don't recommend doing that per se, but having someone a bit on the senior side of things can help a lot.
    ---
    Michael Jones
    Cornell Racing 2001-2005
    PhD Candidate, University of Toronto, Faculty of Information
    http://www.yafle.ca/fsae

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    At my time in Stuttgart we were propably one of the oldest participants around. In average we were around 25, so always half the team was older than 25 and we never had any trouble renting cars / trucks
    Rennteam Uni Stuttgart
    2008: Seat and Bodywork
    2009: Team captain

    GreenTeam Uni Stuttgart
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    Formula Student Austria
    2012: Operative Team

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