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Old 31 May 2016, 13:09   #1
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Country: UK - England
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Make: Ribcraft 585
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Launch and recovery tips for newbie

Hi all,

Just bought my first rib and going through a steeeeep learning curve. Any tips for launching and recovery? Have a ribtech 5.85 and ........

Towing and reversing - generally OK, after the first few days of ownership, the daily launching has much improved my reversing skills! Now confident reversing the boat into various tight spaces and down the slipway!

Launching, specifically, getting the boat off the trailer - how far in should the trailer be? Have been putting the trailer in as far as it will go, with rear wheels of my van just before the waterline. Stern of the boat just floats and with a bit of a wiggle I can get the rib pushed off the trailer.
The rib is quite heavy, if trailer didn't go in quite as far I feel I'd struggle to push it/float it off the trailer?

Recovery - this is where I've been struggling. Had some early problems with the trailer rollers moving under the boat before it was loaded.. I worked out trailer was in way too far, meaning the stern was still floating and it wasn't sitting/settling into the rollers until we towed it out of the water - resulting it rollers being in the wrong position and having to re-do the whole loading process.

Seem some tips online to only immerse trailer so the rearmost rollers just being wet, drive boat onto trailer in tick over, then some power to push it up the trailer. Stand in centre of boat when moving into/onto trailer to keep balanced and centred.

Any other tips.

Obviously practice practice practice is the key, but all tips welcome
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Old 31 May 2016, 14:52   #2
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recovery I usually back the trailer into the water like you said so rear rollers just visible on the surface of the water then attach the winch and just winch it on it just self centres itself I have even winched it on when on a beach when the rib was sat on the sand (but that was my lightweight sr4)
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Old 31 May 2016, 15:02   #3
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Your boat should just roll off the trailer you need it in deep enough so it doesn't ground before it floats I put the wheels of my vehicle to the rims keeping the brakes dry. Push the boat off under control with the winch strap or bow line. Same in reverse clip winch strap on pull on strap keeping boat square take up slack on the winch and pull up. Secure second rope/strap before pulling out.driving on is ok if you know your prop is clear but not nessasary in my opinion but then I single hand launch.

Cheers
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Old 31 May 2016, 16:08   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffstevens763@g View Post
Your boat should just roll off the trailer you need it in deep enough so it doesn't ground before it floats I put the wheels of my vehicle to the rims keeping the brakes dry. Push the boat off under control with the winch strap or bow line. Same in reverse clip winch strap on pull on strap keeping boat square take up slack on the winch and pull up. Secure second rope/strap before pulling out.driving on is ok if you know your prop is clear but not nessasary in my opinion but then I single hand launch.

Cheers
Hmmmmm, mine definitely does not 'roll' off the trailer. I've been watching some launch vids online and all boats seem to glide off the trailer.

I'll need to check how my rollers roll!!
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Old 31 May 2016, 16:56   #5
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My trailer has bunks, not rollers.

It never rolls off the trailer.

Launch:
1. unplug trailer lights.
2. Dock nearby? Then kids hold the bowline, one holds the stern line.
3. No dock, kids hold bowline, stern line stowed.
4. Engine about half way up to avoid grounding.
5. Back in until the boat floats off.

For recovery:
1. Trailer backed in about 2 feet less than launch. Needs enough height to center the boat on the bunks, but still floats in the rear.
2. I usually have to winch up the boat about one foot. It depends on the steepness of the ramp. Just try to develop a routine and then adjust how far the trailer is backed in.
3. Make sure boat is attached to trailer before pulling out, I've seen a few boat slide off the trailer in launch or recovery (Not my boat).
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Old 01 June 2016, 03:09   #6
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Originally Posted by VanillaIceCream View Post
3. Make sure boat is attached to trailer before pulling out, I've seen a few boat slide off the trailer in launch or recovery (Not my boat).
I have a short length of chain that clips onto the trailer & boat winching eye during launch & recovery as an additional safety measure. It isn't under any tension but is there as a 'just in case'. Stays in place during towing.
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Old 01 June 2016, 03:10   #7
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Originally Posted by Bjohnson View Post
Hmmmmm, mine definitely does not 'roll' off the trailer. I've been watching some launch vids online and all boats seem to glide off the trailer.

I'll need to check how my rollers roll!!
yep bunks are a float off granted you can push to a certain degree but rollers are the dogs B just an initial push and she should be away same pulling back much less effort on the winch i always took my rollers off and silicon greased them on the shafts and made sure they were free running.

cheers
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Old 01 June 2016, 15:35   #8
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Thanks for the replies.

There's definitely no roll or glide off the trailer. My launch ramp isn't very steep but even so, the boats not rolling off without some pushing.

Having done some more research I'm not convinced the trailer is setup correctly for the boat or that the rollers are rolling.

Next time I get to the yard, I'm going to check the whole trailer set up.

Will order some new rollers as well. A web search suggests polyurethane rollers best for grp hulls, these seem widely available outside the uk, not so apparent to buy in the uk. Any recommendations or does everyone just go for the blue non marking rollers that seem to be widely available?
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Old 01 June 2016, 17:41   #9
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rubber rollers can pinch onto the shaft rather than roll. I have had nylon rollers on trailers for years, boat slips off like a greased pig.
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Old 01 June 2016, 18:17   #10
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Wife reverses the trailer into the water, I sit in the boat, start the engine when there's enough water for it to cool. Put it into forward to stop it rolling off the trailer, lean over the bow and pull the quick release shackle, shift to reverse and drive the boat off the trailer.
Same on the way back. Wife reverses the trailer to about the depth off the trailer wheels. drive the boat up to the snubber, clip it on, shut off and tilt the engine, haul it out. ........really nothing to it.
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