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Lubrdink 04-27-2012 09:17 PM

First Fixed Keel boat Launch
I sure would appreciate any tips on launching a fixed keel type boat. Our Newport 27 has a fixed keel and associated trailer with about a 25' extender tongue to get it far enough into the lake to float (a comment that certainly will tag me a newbie). We've had swing keel boats which of course launch easily by just backing in, floating the boat and pulling out the trailer.
My hesitation is in the fact that the ramp is pretty steep and by the time and I assume I'll have to unhitch the boat after placing chocks behind the wheels (yes, I'm planning to use the biggest chocks I can find and behind all four wheels) then pulling forward to attach the extender tongue before continuing the launch. I have visions of a quick launch, trailer and all, if the 4 tons of boat and trailer overcome the chocks. I can only hope my wife catches it all so she can post on Youtube!
Anyway, if anyone has some words of wisdom, I'm willing to take all ideas.
Thanks for any help and happy sailing this summer!

deniseO30 04-27-2012 09:42 PM

Re: First Fixed Keel boat Launch
Find out the depth of the ramp. since it's steep it must be deep close in. Be very very sure the vehicle has the power and 4WD to handle the weight. Someone here would know the formula of weight pulling at a certain angle. I don't :) I know it increases exponentially! At my YC they use a long strap and dolly with with wheels under the trailer yoke. This is with truck wheels not a toy dolly. they do this with 30ft boats routinely. including mine :)

PaulinVictoria 04-28-2012 03:42 AM

Re: First Fixed Keel boat Launch
If your feet are wet and you're still in the truck, then you probably shouldn't have reversed that far :)

SHNOOL 04-28-2012 06:24 AM

Re: First Fixed Keel boat Launch
What the guys with fin keel capri's do is put a heavy duty wheel for a dolly on their trailer.

When they get to the ramp, they, attach winch straps to the trailer and the frame of the truck. When they chock their wheels, then unhitch. The straps keep the boat where it is (this requires a decent tongue weight, otherwise the angle of the ramp could slat the boat rearward on the trailer).

Then slowly unwinching the straps the boat goes into the water.

If the tongue extender really works with your ramp, then just use the straps to keep the boat from "rolling away."

Finally, you have a REALLY big truck right? How's this for overkill?

Can't find a picture of a strap launch, but enough people do it (J-24 comes to mind, as does Capri 25).

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