Avoiding rock chipping - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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Old 04-10-2006
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Question Avoiding rock chipping

When "trailering" a boat what experiences have people had in trying to protect the hull from rocks thrown up by the tow vehicle and/or trailer tires? I'm a new owner of an Edel 540. I'm repainting her hull this year and plan to take advantage of her "trailerable" size and travel to various local inland lakes over the next few years. I'm not planning on travelling gravel roads but random pebbles are unavoidable. I've seen various methods and wondering what works best for the money?


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Old 04-11-2006
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Bubble wrap and gaffers tape? (3x the price of duct tape, but no gummy residue.)
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Old 04-12-2006
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Cover the forward bottom area of the boat with a mover's blanket/mover's pad, with straps passing over the top of the boat. Probably, a good deal more expensive to start with than the bubble wrap, but reusable.
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Old 04-12-2006
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long haired broom

I have also seen the tow vehicle have what essentially looks like a long haired broom descending about a foot from the bottom of the bumper that takes the trajectory and velocity out of the stones that are kicked up by the tow vehicle tires.
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Old 04-13-2006
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Mud flaps on the tow vehicle might help too.
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Old 04-13-2006
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I trailered my boat for many years and took no precautions of that sort and never saw a nick or mark of any kind, and I raced a lot, and was very particular about the condition of the bottom. Obviously, if I got onto loose gravel, I slowed way down, just because speeding through it would be asking for trouble. If you're concerned, mud flaps and the broom-like device that Roger suggested would be good, but if you start hanging covers over it, they create wind resistance, and they flap and tear loose, and I doubt that they're worth the bother. I towed my boat once without removing a tarp, and it tore, and because of the wind resistance I couldn't get my 350 Chevy truck over 60 mph. I thought the tranny was going bad. I never dreamed it might have that much effect.
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Old 04-15-2006
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Thumbs down

Thanks, everyone, for the input. Obviously, mudflaps are the first step. I hesitate putting a tarp or blanket on the hull because I've seen what a flapping tarp does to a car's paintjob .... I'm curious about the long-haired mud-flap: does it actually work? I've also seen actual vee-shaped plastic sheilds mounted on the front of the trailer. Anyone with experience with them? The bubble wrap sounds like somebody's pulling my leg but it just might work. The only problem being possibly tape residue or the tape taking off the paint .
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