whaler1889

Roller to Bunk Trailer Conversion

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I have a 2002 EZ Loader roller trailer rated at 7400 lbs gross weight.  Trailer is still very solid.  Boat weighs about 6000 lbs with gear and fuel.  The harbor that I launch and retrieve from has strong currents and winds at times and boat is suffering occasional keel damage when power loading onto trailer even with heavy duty guide posts when keel ends up on cross bracket between the rollers, so I'm thinking of converting to bunks.  Looking for comments on roller to bunk conversion or other ideas to eliminate the keel damage near the bow. Thanks in advance.

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When I had a roller trailer I did not go in deep at all.  Never powered the boat  on.  Used the winch and it always went on nice & straight.  I have a different boat now, and it has a bunk trailer that required driving the boat on.  Unless you get the water level just right, its much more difficult to get on the trailer straight in a cross wind or current..

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I agree with makorider. Very common problem for a lot of new to bunk trailering. What I did with my bunk trailers was to find the optimum depth to back down to. I then marked the water line on the fenders. Then applied reflective tape on the front of the fender. That way when you back down the ramp, stop at the tape line and the reflective tape shines when you're loading at night from your truck's tail lights.

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I finally got on the water the beginning of the week and forgot to take some pics of the trailer, however I remembered not to back as far into the water on retrieval.  That day my friend who I was fishing with and is a very experienced sea captain drove the boat onto the trailer with very strong wind and cross current as I observed from near the winch.  After absorbing all your input and watching the boat approach the trailer, it made perfect sense where I went wrong. 

Thanks for the help and that is an example of what makes this forum great.

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Every trailer , regardless of support style has a sweet spot for water depth. Too deep and the boat floats on/off (usually crooked) and puts the angle of the keel out of line with the plane of bunks. Too shallow and your  either dragging the stern or struggling to drag the boat up and over the bunks (usually from WAY back.)  In either case, you often get a boat that comes on crooked Some rigs are more forgiving than others. Some aare more tunable than others as well. Find the sweetspot for your boat trailer combination and stick with it.

 

It's my experience that a boat /trailer combo that launchs and hauls "hard" is one that doesn't get used as much as it should. Been there-Done that.

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