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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > Big-Trailerables - Tell us your Nightmares!
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Thread: Big-Trailerables - Tell us your Nightmares! Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
07-04-2008 02:33 PM
JohnBoelte So far, my only boat launch excitement was when i forgot to put the drain plug in our ski boat. I backed the trailer down, my wife motored the boat over to the dock while I parked the truck. I got back to the boat and noticed a little bit of water hear the engine cover. It took me about a 1/2 second to realize why there was water there!! I got the bilge pump going and motored to shore where I could put in the drain plug.

When my daughter and I were bringing our sailboat home (International 23 - about 3300 lbs), it started swaying pretty bad on the highway. I was doing about 60 MPH and had just recently passed a tractor trailer. Fortunately, the other driver gave me some room to recover. Also fortunate was we use a Suburban to pull with, so I had the truck's weight to help me out. It was quite scarey!!
07-03-2008 08:46 PM
Classic30
Quote:
Originally Posted by rawsonnut View Post
To set the stage, a 30ft 12,000lb boat on a 3 axle trailer parked at the top of a long steep boat ramp. Add a borrowed tongue extension and start down the ramp toward the water about 200 ft away. After hearing a bang and feeling a sickening snap watch your pride and joy rapidly pick up speed as it rushes toward the water totally on its own. I am not sure how fast it was going when it hit the water but it made one hell of a splash. After I got my heart restarted I had to swim after her, thank goodness the ladder came down, I got her back to the dock to check for damages. The most severe was to my pride and my nerves! That was one day I hope to never repeat, well maybe as a spectator next time.
Wot, and deny the entertainment for everyone else?!?

Having "boat-surfed" myself on at least one occasion - in a smaller boat mind you - to my warped way of thinking this sort of thing should be encouraged! There's nothing quite like the sight of a 12,000lb sailing boat launching itself to keep the sort of stinkpotters dabnis mentioned in line behind everyone else.

Good for morale and all that fuzzy sort of stuff.
07-03-2008 11:15 AM
rawsonnut
Worlds fastest launch

To set the stage, a 30ft 12,000lb boat on a 3 axle trailer parked at the top of a long steep boat ramp. Add a borrowed tongue extension and start down the ramp toward the water about 200 ft away. After hearing a bang and feeling a sickening snap watch your pride and joy rapidly pick up speed as it rushes toward the water totally on its own. I am not sure how fast it was going when it hit the water but it made one hell of a splash. After I got my heart restarted I had to swim after her, thank goodness the ladder came down, I got her back to the dock to check for damages. The most severe was to my pride and my nerves! That was one day I hope to never repeat, well maybe as a spectator next time.
06-29-2008 01:44 PM
Banshi I guess I have been fortunate but people have always been polite do far including some power boat actually backing out and giving some extra room when needed. That said some of the other problems related to keeping the boat int he water that don't surface when the boat is kept on dry land.

A leak starts and you return a week later, after a hard week at work, to find your boat submerged.

A storm comes through and puts your boat on dry land for you or uses it to batter your neighbors boat

Lets not forget the constant maintenance of the bottom, the top and every caulk joint on the boat below or above water. You can't just walk out your back door and do that small repair whenever a free hour pops up.

Limits on where you can go without large outlays of time and often money. I can take a week off and spend the week on the west coast of Florida after a short 3 hour road trip, if you have to sail there you spend the week sailing and who knows what the weather along the way has in store.

Mine is not really all that big so some issues I don't have to worry about like tides at most ramps.

That said my wife would prefer a boat at a mooring for all the reasons originally stated. We will eventually compromise and it keep it rigged up on the trailer at a marina only taking it down for trips to places that there is not time to actually sail there and still have time to enjoy it.
06-29-2008 12:04 AM
eMKay Trailering gets easy with practice, I have years of experience with race cars, and even more in the military towing, so backing a boat down the ramp was easy. Size makes no difference really. I hate crowds though so when launching I do it during off peak times, or rig the boat nowhere near the ramp, and just launch like a power boater. With the new boat I did it in really crappy weather because I was worried about the much deeper draft, and my home modified trailer But it turned out to be just as easy to launch as my last boat, just had to get a little deeper in the water.
06-28-2008 07:57 PM
dabnis Normally just a lurker, but couldn't resist this one. Been using launching ramps for over 50 years, still do. Launching ramps, kill or be killed, dog eat dog and so on. Can't imagine trying to launch a large sail boat at one.Typical happening is the guy that passes everybody in line, getting ready to launch, he goes down the ramp then takes 10 to 15 minutes to get ready to launch.
When a polite comment is made about getting in the "get ready line" next time
the person says: "F.O., A.H., I can do any G.D. thing I want, get out of my face brfore I break yours". Such nice people, seems to be worse as time goes on. Drove an 18 wheeler for a while. Capt Kermie's comments about other drivers just having to get in front of you are right on. Also had a sailboat in a slip in Sausalito for 10 years, the only way to go.

Dabnis
06-28-2008 03:57 PM
arbarnhart
Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlieCobra View Post
I remember the power boaters cutting me off. It really sucked when I didn't have an engine and had to paddle around. Glad I got the big boat.
The worst is the windy days with no motor. You have to sail back and forth, so it isn't obvious that you are trying to be in line for the ramp. Fortunately I have found ramps that are used largely by sail boats.
06-28-2008 03:09 PM
stu9000 My Dad and I towing a 30 foot Shetland on an old four wheel trailer.
Dad says "look round and check the wheels will you son?"
Im peering through the back window at a wheel as we go over the Orwell Bridge.
"its kinda wobbing" I get a chance to say before the wheel pops off, bounces neatly and bumps the rear window as it makes its escape.

"...err... Dad...!"

I had an eventfull childhood.

Another towing adventure on the A1 near Welwyn Garden City.
A twin fin Caprice 19 on an old farm trailer.
We'd left the outboard on the back and the damn thing set up a wicked snake till it was JUMPING from one wheel to the other. Dad managed to guide the little Rover 213 into the hard sholder.
When I got out i noticed score marks on the rear wheel hub caps had made contact with the trailer. Neat driving Dad. How the boat wasnt matchwood Ill never know. Dad had to leave me by the roadside to nip home for the biggest rock hammer to beat one of the wheels back into alignment.

Got lots more (but then havnt we all).
05-02-2008 03:19 AM
Classic30
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaPlaya View Post
Exc. thread I don't mind the slip fees...It's the winter storage and lift that bugs me. My house is 800 ft from the launch I intend to wheel my cradle.
AL
800 ft? Lucky beggar.. some of us have to drive for an hour just to get that close!

I'll tell you a story that didn't happen to me, but to a friend of mine:

He'd had his eyes on a particular Hartley TS21 and had spent the day with the PO on a sea-trial on Westernport Bay prior to handing over his hard-earned cash.

The PO helped him hook up his Ford Falcon station-wagon (probably a bit light-on for the job) to the trailer and retrieve the boat, and with a kindly wave he pulled out of the Hastings boat ramp and was soon on the road taking his new-found prize back home to Melbourne.

Well.. the Dandenong-Hastings road is very pretty drive on a two-lane country road with a 100km/h speed limit, but is a bit hilly in patches. Apparently the trailer wasn't loaded correctly and he was going a wee bit too fast in his eagerness to get home. Coming down one particular hill, the trailer started to sway and, never having towed anything that size before, he gently applied the brakes to slow down.

At around 40km/h, the boat/trailer decided he was going too slow and tried to overtake. The entire rig, car and trailer, did a 180-degree spin in the middle of the road and ended up off one side with the boat upside down with the trailer on top, still attached to the car. He was lucky - it's usually a very busy road - but he had to wait for a crane to rescue him and the road was blocked for quite some time whilst they got him unstuck...

The only damage to the boat was a broken main hatch! Try doing that with a Plastic Fantastic and there'll be bits of it all over the highway. Hartley's rule!
05-02-2008 02:25 AM
LaPlaya Exc. thread I don't mind the slip fees...It's the winter storage and lift that bugs me. My house is 800 ft from the launch I intend to wheel my cradle.
AL
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