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Old 13 October 2002, 17:07   #1
Country: UK - England
Town: Leatherhead
Length: no boat
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Posts: 907
There but for the grace of God.......

So there I was earlier to-day in the pouring rain and howling wind (as you do on a Sunday morning), down at the marina giving my beast a little TLC (plus trying to fit the hydrofoils to the outboard) when up turns this chap and a couple of mates with their nice smart 6m+ rib. They proceed to get her ready for launching and are just backing down the slip when all hell breaks loose and the rib rolls off the trailer onto the concrete (above the waterline). After much heaving and straining, we manage to get her back on the trailer and survey the damage - serious gouging to the hull; gell coat worn through to the glass and a bent outboard skeg. It appears that the winch ratchet stop had slipped off and away she went.

The question that arises from this story is: How many of you rely solely on the winch strop/ratchet to hold your boat on the trailer when launching and recovering? I must confess that I have up until today but will be making up a suitable safety rope to double up on the winch strop before my next launch - probably with a snap shackle to pop onto the bow eye and the other end firmly fixed to the winch post/draw bar.

PS: Highest gust at Chichester Bar Beacon 20mins ago - SW 47knots

Peter (nick, nick) T

Age and treachery will always overcome youth and skill! Bullshit and brilliance only come with age and experience.
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Old 14 October 2002, 05:08   #2
Country: Greece
Boat name: SUN KISS II
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Not me Peter,

I ALWAYS use this thick rope connected on the U joint on the bow. I pass it through a steady point on the trailor 2 - 3 times and hold the other end. This way regardless if you are launching or recovering, there is no way the boat can "leave" the trailor without your "permission".
Remember this rope MUST NOT exceed in lenght your hull, so it would never reach your prop.

///// \\\\\

Trying to find more brackets for Keith....

Michael a.k.a "Bat Falcon"

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Old 14 October 2002, 06:07   #3
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Country: UK - England
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Good point from Ribald. Having both suffered from winch failure and witnessed early separation of boat and trailer in the past, I now use a small length of stainless chain. One end fixed to an eye bolt on the draw bar and a snap shackle on t'other end which clicks onto the bow eye. Undoes in seconds and stronger than the winch itself.
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Old 14 October 2002, 06:12   #4
Country: Canada
Town: Newfoundland
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Ditto me although I can only run to galvanised!
Also don't undo the bow line (which is tied to the winch post on trailer) until boat & trailer is in the water. i.e. Stop just before feet would get wet and release chain/painter before reversing that final bit for launch. That way if winch strap fails the whole lot is going to end up in the drink rather than on the slip!

Had a winch strap go whilst winching boat up once. Nasty! Recommend that you check your winch strap carefully and often.
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Old 14 October 2002, 09:27   #5
Country: UK - England
Town: Upavon, Wiltshire
Boat name: Dromedary
Make: Ribtec
Length: 6.55
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Join Date: Apr 2001
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even worse how many of you trail the boat home on just the winch strap ??

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Old 14 October 2002, 09:58   #6
Country: UK - England
Town: Ardnamurchan
Boat name: Out of the Blue
Make: Ribcraft 585
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MMSI: 235 079 253
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We use a short length of chain attached to the trailer with a snap shackle. I leave it attached until absolutely ready to launch and it always go on as soon as the boat is winched onto the trailer. Can any trailer manufacturers on the forum tell us why it is not a standard fitting on trailers?
Geoff Campbell
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Old 14 October 2002, 10:45   #7
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Like everything the reason why its not standard is probably down to added cost. Would be a very good idea though. I will ask the trailer manufacture the feasibility of including one!

I always leave the bowline tied to the trailer until the boats in the water to be on the safe side, and the same for recovering.

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Old 14 October 2002, 17:48   #8
Country: UK - England
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Seen it happen on the beach here a few times when the tractor is bouncing a trailer up the beach. We put a few links of chain and a snap hook on the winch post as soon as we took delivery and always clip it on to the bow eye as soon as the winching is finished.
Now the bayliner came on its original US trailer with chain link and hook already on. Why not the roller coaster??
I put this to staff on the stand at last Earls court boat show and they jut did not seem interested - everyone knows you should not tow on just the winch was the reply, and all these things cost money(sthrewth - how much!!).
Perhaps when the defence calls them at an RTA prosecution or they are looked at under general products safety regs a few links of chain and a hook will seem affordable!
Dave M
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Old 15 October 2002, 04:02   #9
Country: UK - England
Town: Saltash, Cornwall
Make: Rib less:-(
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safety cable

Happened at the sailing club, after the odd gelcoat chip and moaning nothing happened apart from informing user of his ways.
Then another one did it again with engine down, after replacing the gearbox (ouch - not much left in budget after that), then got wire strop and clip safety chains. Reused dinghy hailyard is strong enough.

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