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Old 31 May 2023, 18:50   #1
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Setting up a trailer

Hi,

I bought a used FRIB in October of last year, complete with trailer - my first experience with a powerboat and with trailering.

The guy I bought it from helped me to load the boat onto the trailer, and we secured it by strapping it down fairly firmly with nylon straps that went across the tubes, and attaching the winch strap to the D-ring at the front. He told me that the trailer had originally been fitted with 5 bunks: two long ones along the outer, lateral sides, two short inner ones, and the one right at bow, but he had replaced the shorter, inner pair with two sets of rollers. He gave me the bunks he had removed.

I've since then made 3 short trips with the boat on the trailer. However, I've been examining the setup today and realised that the rollers are not actually making contact with the boat at all - the only part of the hard hull that makes contact with the trailer is the centreline, which rests on the very small central rollers (right at the back and halfway along the trailer). The tubes rest on the two long, lateral bunks.

What would people here advise I do?

1. Should I raise the two sets of rollers, or shall I get rid of them and re-fit the original short bunks there instead (raised, of course, so they contact the hull)?

2 How much pressure should there be on the tubes ie should they be taking any substantial share of the weight? Or should the lateral bunks be lowered a little so they just barely make contact with the tubes?

3 Is there a guide somewhere as to how to set up a boat trailer from scratch?

4 And finally, I know that tight-fitting straps over the tubes are bad for the tubes, but can all of the strain really be taken purely from the d-rings at the front and the tow rings on the transom? It seems asking a lot from three attachments.

Thanks in advance,

Trello.
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Old 31 May 2023, 19:20   #2
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That looks so wrong, sorry

Couple of options;

Ditch the swing and keel rollers and move long bunks inwards to support the hull between lifting strakes.

Or;

Ditch the bunks and rear keel roller. Move rear swing rollers to rear cross member and get two single set rollers bolted to front cross member.

In either case secure to trailer at winch post/bow eye and strap transom to rear cross members utilising towing eyes.
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Old 31 May 2023, 19:34   #3
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Found these pics if of any help. Same trailer with bunks then converted to rollers.


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Old 31 May 2023, 22:58   #4
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I'm always really impressd at how helpful and prompt the replies on this forum are! Thanks, chipko.

I have a few supplementary questions:

What are lifting strakes?

Is the concept of having both rollers and bunks not one that works in practice?

If I go with just bunks, do the bunks have to be horizontal, or do they slope upwards along the line of the hull?


Thanks again,

Trello.
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Old 01 June 2023, 00:59   #5
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Lifting strakes are the moulded strips running lengthwise along the hull bottom found on most modern planing hulls.

I’m sure rollers and bunks can be combined but usually/simpler to be either or.

If your bunks have the facility then yes best to angle in so top face parallel to hull.


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Old 01 June 2023, 06:50   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chipko View Post
That looks so wrong, sorry

Couple of options;

Ditch the swing and keel rollers and move long bunks inwards to support the hull between lifting strakes.

Or;

Ditch the bunks and rear keel roller. Move rear swing rollers to rear cross member and get two single set rollers bolted to front cross member.

In either case secure to trailer at winch post/bow eye and strap transom to rear cross members utilising towing eyes.
Thanks, Chipko.

I'd rather go for option 2 and keep the rollers and remove the bunks, BUT I want to use it tomorrow, so I've no time to buy rollers for the front cross member, so I'm going to temporarily go for option 1 and get rid of the rollers. I've got today off work, so I should be done a bit later (this is the optimism of someone who hasn't tried to undo some very old bolts yet!)
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Old 01 June 2023, 13:38   #7
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Well, I've removed all of the rollers and have moved the bunks so they are now supporting the hull rather than the tubes. It took a while but it all looks pretty good. Unfortunatley it has meant that the boat sits a little lower on the trailer, and the skeg is now closer to the ground (18cm), which worries me a little - I'll have to avoid climbing kerbs.

I've got what will come across as a daft question, but I'm going to ask it anyway:

Should the hull actually touch the bunk at the bow - or is that bunk there purely as a buffer in case you come too far with the winch? It strikes me that if it is placed so that the bunk touches the hull, everytime you go over a small bump in the road, the boat's going to bounce a little and keep hitting the bunk, risking eventual damage to that part of the hull. Or am I worrying too much (I thought boating was supposed to be relaxing - so far all I do is worry!)
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Old 01 June 2023, 14:56   #8
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Looking good. [emoji106]

Best if hull touches bow snubber on winch post to be honest. If worried about damage you could always swap it out for a rubber one, which is better suited to a hard hull. Also good practice to strap down to stop riding up/forward during hard or emergency braking!

Bunk spacing and angle look good. Ideally bunks to extend about an inch or so behind transom…..usually you can move winch post back to achieve this.

If motor leg too low sat vertical then may need to consider a transom saver to support tilted. Very common in US but hard to find here and we ended up cobbling something up ourselves.
Just be mindful of kerbs, speed bumps etc. in the meantime.
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Old 01 June 2023, 17:37   #9
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transom saver....hard to find here and we ended up cobbling something up ourselves.
Is that the wooden coloured thing in the picture in post #5 ?
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Old 01 June 2023, 18:27   #10
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Yes well spotted.
Mk 1 model crafted from oak worktop off cut. Worked fine but different length req’d when trailer converted to rollers, so Mk 2 effort is adjustable and cobbled together from old shs steel office table legs and rubber bow snubbers. Bit Heath Robinson but rock solid.


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Old 01 June 2023, 18:34   #11
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Bit Heath Robinson ...
I don't agree - I think both look very professional! Much better than anything I could muster.

Thanks for all your help, Chipko.
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Old 01 June 2023, 22:49   #12
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Quote:
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Yes well spotted.
Mk 1 model crafted from oak worktop off cut. Worked fine but different length req’d when trailer converted to rollers, so Mk 2 effort is adjustable and cobbled together from old shs steel office table legs and rubber bow snubbers. Bit Heath Robinson but rock solid.


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Hi Chipko, are the bunje's there purely to strap the OB leg down or are they also to allow some "bounce" if, for instance, going over a pot hole?
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Old 02 June 2023, 06:42   #13
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Hi Steve,
We also use a cam buckle strap around leg and trailer rear cross member…red strap in second pic…so no bounce at all.
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Old 02 June 2023, 07:03   #14
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Thanks chipko, must get to Specsavers! Hadn't even noticed that red strap!
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Old 03 June 2023, 21:27   #15
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Is this a "bow snubber"?Click image for larger version

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Old 04 June 2023, 06:58   #16
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It is. [emoji106]
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Old 03 August 2023, 13:01   #17
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Hi Chipko, is the transom saver secured to the axle/trailer frame at the bottom?
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Old 03 August 2023, 14:00   #18
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Steve, yes secured to trailer with an eye bolt dropped through existing drain hole in rear cross member. The red strap also now goes over motor leg and around rear cross member for a belt and brace’s approach.
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Old 03 August 2023, 14:35   #19
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Thanks chipko
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Old 15 August 2023, 12:45   #20
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Thanks for the advice chipko, transom saver made.

Just need to get out and use Redneck to see if it helps when towing. Housebound due to weather like most, and grounded waiting for overdue grandchild number 5 to be born.
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