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Saturday, November 1, 2014

Boat bail and trailer test



After suffering though rain the better part of the week, the sun came out. Temperatures only got into the high 40s, but that's good enough. This is the end of October in the Great North Woods of New Hampshire. It only gets so warm.

The cockpit of the boat holds rainwater nicely. That might be of value some day, but it was an awful lot of bailing. I made a nice bailer from a square shapped gallon juice jug. Sure beats spending $8.99 at West Marine.

I enjoyed one more row on the lake. Eventually I made my way to the boat landing. The trailer was a bit of a pain to back up. My van is wider than the trailer so when going straight back the trailer can't be seen. By the time the trailer came into view it was time to make a hard turn in the other direction. The whole contraption zigzagged down the ramp.

The trailer sank the way it was supposed to. That's not to be taken for granted. When I was down to the Florida Keys I saw a trailer that was built from timbers so large it floated. The owner had two large ingots of lead attached to the back to get it to sink.


My boat is so light that it was very easy to maneuver it onto the trailer. The side rails worked out well to guide it into position. I'd guessed on the balance and got it pretty much where it's supposed to be. Theres just enough weight on the hitch to keep it from bouncing off the ball, yet not so much that I can't easily lift it and move the trailer by hand. Pretty darn good. With the boat on the trailer I can see what's going on back there, so backing it into the driveway was easy.


I only road tested the trailer a couple miles. The bearings are shot. The lights don't work, and the registration expired back in 2006. Now that I know the boat rides nicely on the trailer, I can fix those minor concerns.


-Sixbears

10 comments:

  1. Sixear look at harbor or northern freight for magnetic tail lights so you can remove them before launch.

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    1. Problem is, there's not enough steel back there in the right places to stick things on. I've had good luck with the LED lights on the other trailer.

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  2. Back when I had the class-C RV, I bought a cheap back-up camera that fit on the license plate holder and I could back right up to the toad and hook it up. I think Wal-Mart had them at the time.

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    1. My lovely wife suggested we drill some holes to mount temporary fiberglass poles to the trailer so it can be seen. Wouldn't cost anything as we've got some old tent poles. Then I should be able to back the trailer down the boat ramp.

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    2. But the rear view camera lets you know how the boat and trailer are doing while you are going down the road.

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    3. I just noticed how small the trailer wheels are. They will really be spinning when you are going down the road at 55 or 60 mph.

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    4. They look smaller in the photo, but they really aren't that big. New tires and new bearings, plus lots of grease stops should do the job. That trailer has already been on long cross country trips.

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  3. I had the same problem when I towed my 16 foot boat behind my Class 'C'. Couldn't see it when backing. So I made a pair of vertical PVC pipe outrigger for the trailer set just wide enough to see them in my mirrors. Cheap fix for me!

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    Replies
    1. Whatever works. Any fix is going to have to be a cheap one. A couple of poles sure beats having my lovely wife yell instructions from the boat ramp. :)

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  4. This is a tricky job. Like what you've said, I would also take anything that is a cheap fix that works. Hauling boats on land always presents challenges, but it's good that you were able to solve this one quite easily. Thanks for sharing!

    Kent Garner @ White's Marine Center

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