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Old 06 January 2015, 07:48   #1
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Degraaff trailers

Following on from my thread enquiring about CLH trailers, what are the views on Degraaff trailers? As far as I know it's a fairly well known brand that has been around for ages, just after any owner feedback.

It would be a modified version of this:

SB1800 boat trailer

An initial enquiry with outline spec produced a quick response which suggests they are happy to supply it exactly as I want it including some non standard features, and the quote is pretty good certainly compared to list prices elsewhere. Having searched on here they seem to be well thought of?

There is a particular reason for them being convenient as a supplier which is connected with the logistics of getting it here.
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Old 06 January 2015, 08:00   #2
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I believe they are fantastic quality and will customise to order.

However....... I approached them a while back and they were quite immovable on advertised price. They also offered a poor PX on my old trailer, and wanted to charge extra for getting my boat off the old trailer, onto the new one and setting it up at their place.

I spoke to Mike on here (SW Boat Transport) and he sorted me out with a SBS R1800EL with all the spec I wanted, a decent PX value and no extra charge for setting up at my usual slipway. All for much less than DeGraaf were advertising. Plus DeGraaf charge extra for side steps, SBS comes with them as standard.

Not sure they'd deliver to Mare Harbour or Stanley Harbour though! ;-)
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Old 06 January 2015, 17:49   #3
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To be honest, even if there is a few hundred quid difference on price I'd pay it to get exactly what I want - the freight here is going to account for ~30% of the final cost. As it turns out the price quoted is pretty good, though I am still looking at 2 or 3 options.
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Old 06 January 2015, 18:30   #4
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I've had two Degraff trailers but also two Indespension, one RM trailer and more recently an SBS. All of them were pretty good tbh.

The Degraff was very durable but the plastic mud guards were a bit naff. That said the owners were accommodating when we needed spares. They were the nearest producer for us and prices were keen when we were looking.

By comparison the Indespension with steel mud guards was better but the steel stud they use instead of a brake cable clatters against the trailer and it was noisy. Parts were just stupid money - even with a discount via work - but non branded components were cheap and easy.

The RM trailer was pretty old when we got it but it didn't seem to have aged well and it was a light weight, unbraked trailer so it's not really a fair comparison.

The SBS was cheap and its our first foray with sealed bearings. However the company were very helpful and understood our hesitation. When a minor component failed and I contacted them for advice it was given and spares sent FOC in the post the next day.

With the exception of the SBS trailer we've always used bearing buddies and rinsed we after use. No bearings have worn out on us but we've routinely checked and maintained them when movement was noted.

Michael at South Coast Trailers (South Coast Boat Trailers - boat trailers, boat trailer for sale or hire) supplied the SBS and Indespension trailers and done us better prices then anywhere else.

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Old 22 January 2015, 03:46   #5
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I've found a DeGraaff locally and it looks well made, it was a centre keel version rather than a swing beam but a lot of the construction is similar and it is pretty solid.

After several emails back and forth, I've just ordered a customised variant of the SB1800 with 16 front and 20 rear rollers (I looked at 20+20 but having checked the curvature of the hull, I decided the 16 would sit better at the front). It's got a ring hitch, and hubs to let me fit Land Rover 16" rims and mudguards for up to 33" diameter flotation tyres.

Also getting a pile of spares (wheel bearings, rollers, U bolts etc) - though I won't actually see any of it until the end of April.

Arthur de Graaff has been immensely helpful and replied to everything immediately, which is a proper treat in times when many other suppliers in all areas of business treat answering emails as optional on the grounds they are 'busy'. At this stage from a customer service perspective, I'd highly recommend them, especially if you want something non standard as I did - none of it was a problem and everything on the spec is exactly as I wanted it. Looking forward to the meccano set coming out of a container in April
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Old 22 January 2015, 04:25   #6
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Another thumbs up for DeGraff from me.
Now on my second trailer from them and very pleased. Always had great service 👍
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Old 22 January 2015, 08:41   #7
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I've used Arthur for nearly 30 years, and he really is superb. Always happy to customise, has never let me down on delivery, 5 star service all the time.
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Old 26 April 2015, 12:10   #8
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Three months on, and it's here

Shipped as a 'CKD' kit to save on freight, I have started construction

1. Arrival of the chassis
2. A few spare bits to find a home for
3. Tipping trailer always comes in useful
4. So does the box all the bits came in...
5. Looks a bit bare
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Old 26 April 2015, 12:17   #9
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1. Wheels on, just a temporary set at the moment, still got to get some decent 16" wheels, paint them up and get some tyres fitted
2. Coming together
3. Due to having specified <ahem> "Maintenance free brakes" I went for a ring hitch rather than a ball, to make sure it stays on. Will also swap the strong check chain off the other trailer later.
4. Should be enough rollers I think!

More to follow. I still have mudguards to add (the supplied ones weren't really wide enough, so I'm going to swap out the oversize ones off the old trailer), and docking arms to go on, but the next step is to splash it and try the boat for size in case I need to move the axle or anything else.

Not having any measurements to use as a starting point, the initial roller setup was done by making a plywood template of the shape of the transom and chines, and setting up the rear roller set so that it sits where I think it needs to. This may or may not work - I will find out soon enough! Transom to bow eye measurement was taken and the winch post set in about the right place but it may also need some fine tuning, as will the bow roller and the snubber. The axle location was determined by taking the transom to axle measurement off the boat sitting on the old trailer, so hopefully that is also pretty good.

It seems impressively solid, so looking forward to getting it wet on the next fine day
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Old 26 April 2015, 16:18   #10
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Old 27 April 2015, 05:19   #11
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What you need is a little Arthur boxed with the kit. Lovely trailers, have you the holes drilled through the wheels that matches up with the holes in the hubs so that you can flush the brakes?
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Old 27 April 2015, 05:23   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hightower View Post
What you need is a little Arthur boxed with the kit. Lovely trailers, have you the holes drilled through the wheels that matches up with the holes in the hubs so that you can flush the brakes?
What you really need is air tools ... how many nyloc nuts to do up? Would not have wanted to do that lot with a ratchet!

Brakes, er, yeah. I have full access to everything that needs washing
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Old 02 May 2015, 19:22   #13
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Launch day today, pretty painless - I didn't have to make any immediate adjustments, so the time taken to measure up paid off. Still got to fit docking arms, steps and mudguards yet.

Any comments are welcome on how it sits on the trailer in these photos - I think it needs to come forwards a bit, to sit the rearmost roller closer to the transom, which means moving the winch post and bow roller forward a bit. It came straight out of the water with no adjustment needed, and will happily lower off the trailer on a modest gradient - really easy to use.

What I am slightly puzzled about is that though it looks fine to me, some of the rollers don't seem to have any weight on them, despite being set up exactly symmetrical. Should I loosen all the mounting bolts slightly and let it "settle" on the trailer, or what is the best way to deal with this? Any thoughts gratefully received.
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Old 03 May 2015, 09:23   #14
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Aim to have the rear roller directly under the transom.

Otherwise looks fine :-)... Love the wheels !
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Old 04 May 2015, 03:45   #15
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Nothing wrong with a set of MT's for the beach

Those are temporary, but it will have 16" rims on it and a set of 4x4 light truck tyres, which transforms the ride for the boat on rough roads. Normal 13" wheels might as well be solid! I'm still, er, shopping for the final fit
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