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The Final Hurdle - Boat Trailer

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Po man said "Then also when you decide to leave the hobbie a utility trailer will sell instantly on craigs list. Never a money looser if you don't get ripped of when you buy it."

Truer words never spoken.

Same with the Sunfish. You'll probably make a little money.
 

Guybrush3pwood

Active Member
Po man said "Then also when you decide to leave the hobbie a utility trailer will sell instantly on craigs list. Never a money looser if you don't get ripped of when you buy it."

Truer words never spoken.

Same with the Sunfish. You'll probably make a little money.
Excellent! Because I'm one more failed knot away from craigslisting the entire thing!
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
Recalling member Mixmkr's difficulty with launching over a muddy or gravelly unofficial Kentucky boat ramp...

First, cut off the hitch.

Slide a long square tube, much longer than it needs to be. Reattach the hitch. Add sturdy cross-pins (instead) where the new bolts would've gone

Then, the trailer tongue could be adjusted to "telescope", adding "reach" to the water. (Over mud and gravel).

(Photos of the basic trailer in response #27 or #41).
 

Sailflow

Active Member
Did you use your truck to bring it home? On a rainy day drive on east lake road in caz and check out the boat launch. You should be able to back the truck close to the water and you would need some one to help lift the boat out. I have seen people do this with a dolly and then you can park anywhere get the boat on a dolly and just roll it in. Caz is a nice lake to sail on.
 

Guybrush3pwood

Active Member
Did you use your truck to bring it home? On a rainy day drive on east lake road in caz and check out the boat launch. You should be able to back the truck close to the water and you would need some one to help lift the boat out. I have seen people do this with a dolly and then you can park anywhere get the boat on a dolly and just roll it in. Caz is a nice lake to sail on.
I rented a truck from Home Depot just to get it home. I could car-top on my Xterra but...yikes.
 

Monsterfish

New Member
Unless you are transporting more than one sunfish, a trailer for a 13ft 120lbs boat seems too much. Sunfish can be car topped in more than one way. No trailer registration, no-hassle parking or turning sharp corners, no-hassle going through McDonalds drive-through on the way to the beach or lake.
 

Guybrush3pwood

Active Member
Unless you are transporting more than one sunfish, a trailer for a 13ft 120lbs boat seems too much. Sunfish can be car topped in more than one way. No trailer registration, no-hassle parking or turning sharp corners, no-hassle going through McDonalds drive-through on the way to the beach or lake.
Yeah, but as a matter of physics, getting a 14ft, 130lb boat on the roof of my Xterra by myself would be an impossibility. At least not without damaging my car, my boat, me or all three in the process. A trailer would just make it easier.
 

Monsterfish

New Member
It is possible. Even with a little Ford Eco-Sport. And you have Xterra. Getting the boat on a trailer, securing the sails and spars would take us much time as topping it. Plus, the amount of money you save without a trailer. If you simply come back from the run and unhook the trailer and leave the boat as it is then it is simpler - hook and unhook. But if you clean it, drain it, store it after the trip, probably the same amount of work. I wish we could circumvent the problem by simply getting the house by the beach:)
 

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Breeze Bender

Breeze Bender
Yes, it’s possible, but I’ve gotta agree with Guybrush3, it’s not easy, especially single-handedly. A bed extension on a truck is one thing, but lifting onto the roof of an Xtera isn’t something I’d ever attempt. I sold a Sailfish yesterday and helped the buyer lift it onto his Subaru Outback. At 90 lbs (40 lbs less than a Sunfish) we got it done, but the buyer knew a trailer would be his next purchase since it wouldn’t have been easy for him to do alone.
The right trailer will come along. Registration is another hassle, unless you’re lucky enough to find one with papers. Ask me why my trailers are registered in Maine (perfectly legal!)
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
Or New Hampshire!

1) I've cartopped successfully, using a step-ladder for the first "lift". I didn't have a step-ladder at my arrival, and should have had a moving blanket (HF-$5) handy. :confused:

2) A member showed himself loading his Sunfish on his PVC slide-on rig:

Fullscreen capture 2292016 90657 AM.bmp.jpg

I've added some text to make it easier, by using a line over the top. Tie it to a tree, and back up.

Well, scratch that idea. ;)

OTOH, It must have worked well, since he got an Itasca up there! :eek:
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
One option I find intriguing can be seen in this video. Thoughts about what this guy is doing? I’m not the handiest person on the planet but I’m almost certain I can do what he’s doing here. Would love to get opinions!

This video describes what I would do--if I had to have a trailer.

I'd break fewer drill bits than he does, but my drills are older, and less powerful. Notice he broke the sturdy 1/2" drill bit after passing through the first hole, then his inertia broke the bit when he struck the other side..

I have a pair of "stepped" drills, but never use them--plus, I can use my grinder to re-sharpen any broken drill bit, in a minute or two.

Lock-washers are "old tech", not suitable for this tubing, and most of today's hardware store washers don't have the necessary temper. Nylock is the way to go for fasteners.

What I'd do differently, is to cut the tongue in half, add enough 1-1/4" square tubing internally to accommodate the Sunfish's length, and to allow the trailer to "telescope" to the water's edge. (Drill necessary and additional holes, use 1/4" diameter locking pins instead of Nylock bolts).

I'd have to check for clearance, but the axle could be relocated above the spring assembly. (Lowering the trailer).

To transport right-side up, I'd add flat 5/4ths boards to "float" the Sunfish. (The same "bunking" technique is seen among other sailboat trailer manufacturers).

Cinch the Sunfish to the boards (only) and don't attach the boards too firmly: Allow some "stretch" to the bunk boards. (Bolt the forward attachment, but only "contain" the rear).

'Funny how he added his trailer tongue to the trailer, going backwards!
 

tag

my2fish
you could certainly get a lot of use out of that trailer for non-sailing activities. make some removable bunks for moving the Sunfish around, and then it can be used for hauling just about anything else.
 

po-man sailor

Active Member
Agree w tag. If I were to buy a trailer to haul a sunfish I would most definately buy a utility style and modify to a multi purpose. Also they are easier to sell when not needed. And very useful for lots of other things. More positives than a single use dedicated sunfish trailer.
 
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Breeze Bender

Breeze Bender
Just do what most of us do- buy another boat (preferably a Sunfish) sold with a trailer.
Keep “boat trailer” as a saved search for craigslist. Add your parameters (price, distance) and something will come up. If it’s a good deal you’ll need to be ready to move fast with cash and a proper hitch. Yes, that utility trailer looks nice, but it’s nothing more than a Harbor Freight, as L&VW points out.
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
The "Automatic Transmission" threw me. The tractor must come with it—and an opportunity to buy both, and sell the tractor. :)

(Or is that an ATV?) :rolleyes:
 
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