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Old 02-04-2016, 09:21   #1
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Trailer question

Im on the verge of buying a 22' sailboat...just a normal configuration and weight...it comes with a 1 axel trailer in good condition that has hyd brakes...any opinions on taking this cross country???
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:12   #2
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Re: Trailer question

It just depends. Trailer axles are rated to a given weight of load. So long as the boat+trailer load is below the axle rating you are fine.

But the average 22' keel boat probably really needs a double axle trailer.
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:19   #3
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Re: Trailer question

Yeah, it depends on the trailer rating, and if it's a light or heavy boat. Surge brakes are fine in that size range. Be sure to clean, inspect and lube the bearings before starting a long trip.. they are often bad.
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:43   #4
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Re: Trailer question

Assuming a good trailer - bearings, tires, etc - a truck or SUV rated for the load, prep for the trip, and conservative driving (no bumpertailing, no speeding, minimise lane changes), there should be no problems.

At the start of a trip, I stop after the first 30 or so min to check the bearing temperature, tighten straps etc, and then a check maybe every two hours.
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:53   #5
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Re: Trailer question

You want to be sure tires, wheel bearings and brakes are all in tip-top condition. A failure on the road is no fun. I do all this every year, after a 4,000 mile summer trip, towing 12,000 lb.

Look over the entire trailer carefully. Anything that looks worn or damaged may need to be addressed. Check the tires all over, including the spare. Worn or uneven tread, bulges, or cracks in the sidewalls are bad signs. Make sure they're not too old (> 4-5 years) even if they look good.

Wheels should be balanced, and tires inflated to max pressure listed on sidewall, unless their weight rating is considerably greater than the weight they'll be carrying. If that rating is less than they'll be carrying, replace with better.

Pull apart wheel bearings and brakes. If brakes are disc, clean/grease caliper pins/slides. Check pads for adequate thickness.

If drums, check shoes, check/clean drums, make sure wheel cylinders are not corroded/stuck. Replace any parts that don't look good. If shoes are greasy replace. Clean adjusters and lube their threads with anti-seize.

Clean bearings and races (and all other greasy parts) with solvent. Check for pitted or discolored surfaces. Replace bearings and races unless they look perfect. Unless you know they have few miles on them, you might want to replace anyway, since you have them apart.

Repack with high-quality marine wheel bearing grease. Fill not just the bearings, but also the empty space around the spindle between the inner and outer bearings. Air left inside can expand when it gets warmer. Then when you launch, cool water can suddenly contract that air, and suck water in.

Tighten the castle nut until more than finger tight, then back off 1/6 or less before inserting cotter pin. Wheel should turn smooth and easy, with very little play.

If lugs or lug nuts are rusty or hacked up, clean up or replace. I put anti-seize on the lugs to keep salt water out of the threads.

Make sure brake fluid is full and clean. You may need to bleed air bubbles from the brake lines - certainly if you have replaced wheel cylinders or calipers.

Adjust brakes if drums, and test.

Travel a few miles without using the brakes much at first, then stop and feel the wheel hubs. If the bearings are OK, they should not be very warm. If they feel hot to the touch, or one side is much warmer than the other, something is wrong.

If bearings seem OK, test the brakes, stopping moderately at first, and then braking harder. Brakes should provide plenty of stopping power, and evenly - the trailer should not try to swing to one side or the other when you apply the brakes. If brakes don't stop well or evenly (assuming all the parts are in good shape) you could have air in the brake lines, or maybe drum brakes need better adjusting. Brakes should release as soon as you get going again. If they stick and drag, they'll got hot quickly and cause a problem - stop and check to see they're not very hot.

If bearings run cool and brakes work well and evenly, they should be OK. Check the brake fluid reservoir again after a successful road test.

For a long trip, I'd carry grease, solvent, tools, and spare bearings. And a jack and some pieces of wood.

Hope I didn't forget anything too important....
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Old 04-04-2016, 11:21   #6
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Re: Trailer question

Catalina 22 is a typical trailer-sailor, and all of the ones I have seen came with a single axle trailer. I havent read about any horror stories from towing them. As several have said, TIRES can look good, but be old enough to have lost strength, especially if they have sat deflated at all. Make sure the spare actually fits the hub and you have a lug wrench that fits. Surge brakes are good, but a real pain to back up unless there is an easy to use lock-out. If the trailer has an extendable tongue you will need some type of quick release for the hydraulic line. I need to research this since my trailer was only used in the storage yard and the brakes were not connected. I need to do all of these things previously mentioned in this thread, since I hope to tow up to the San Juans this summer. I have a 1/2 ton pickup which is plenty heavy enough for a 22 foot boat if not driven by a fool. Have fun. _____Grant.
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Old 04-04-2016, 12:00   #7
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Re: Trailer question

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Originally Posted by gjordan View Post
Catalina 22 is a typical trailer-sailor, and all of the ones I have seen came with a single axle trailer. I havent read about any horror stories from towing them. As several have said, TIRES can look good, but be old enough to have lost strength, especially if they have sat deflated at all. Make sure the spare actually fits the hub and you have a lug wrench that fits. Surge brakes are good, but a real pain to back up unless there is an easy to use lock-out. If the trailer has an extendable tongue you will need some type of quick release for the hydraulic line. I need to research this since my trailer was only used in the storage yard and the brakes were not connected. I need to do all of these things previously mentioned in this thread, since I hope to tow up to the San Juans this summer. I have a 1/2 ton pickup which is plenty heavy enough for a 22 foot boat if not driven by a fool. Have fun. _____Grant.
Actually a Catalina 22 is exactly the toys of boat I was thinking of. With a weight of 2,500 lbs plus the weight of the trailer you are looking at a towed weight of around 3,000lbs.

Most trailer axles are rated to either 2,500 or 3,500lbs. So a larger single axle would be ok, but very close to its maximum rated capacity add in an ice chest and some gear and you very well may be over the rated capacity. And you would have to be very careful about adding gear boxes for sails and tools.

My old J-22 (1,800lbs) trailer however used two 2,500lbs axles and had all sorts of stuff hanging on. But still never got close to the maximum capacity of the trailer.
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Old 04-04-2016, 18:01   #8
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Re: Trailer question

I was just checking on tires for my trailer. It came with one brand new tire and one really old and checked tire. The seller had put a new tire on since one old one was so rotten that it would not hold air at all. I was going to buy an identical tire to the new one, but checked user feedback and decided to buy 2 new of another brand and keep the new one as a spare. The one that the seller put on is a TRAIL AMERICA TIRE, and the user reports were very bad. I havent decided what brand I will buy, but it wont be a Trail America. As with most thing its BUYER BEWARE. _____Grant.
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Old 08-04-2016, 02:19   #9
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Re: Trailer question

Quote:
Originally Posted by gjordan View Post
I was just checking on tires for my trailer. It came with one brand new tire and one really old and checked tire. The seller had put a new tire on since one old one was so rotten that it would not hold air at all. I was going to buy an identical tire to the new one, but checked user feedback and decided to buy 2 new of another brand and keep the new one as a spare. The one that the seller put on is a TRAIL AMERICA TIRE, and the user reports were very bad. I havent decided what brand I will buy, but it wont be a Trail America. As with most thing its BUYER BEWARE. _____Grant.
Very good idea on replacing both tires. I put a set of really nice tires on my trailer years ago and it was a HUGE improvement and well worth the $$. I think they were Michelin.

Be sure to follow the advice on the bearings and the brakes. I just moved to Tampa from San Jose, CA and pulled 5500 lbs in a grand cherokee. When going through the Rocky Mountains I was thankful for all the preparation that i did.

I actually named my Jeep after that trip. She deserved it.
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Old 08-04-2016, 05:54   #10
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Re: Trailer question

Towing anything across country is not going to be fun. Expect 10mpg and be happy with 12mpg. Any gasoline engine will rev more and may be buzzy. 2,500 - 3,000 one way miles of buzzy can get old fast.

I would pick a small truck. Toyota Tacoma, Honda Ridgeline, Nissan Frontier, the new Chevy Colorado/GMC Canyon.

The new F-150 with the 2.7eco boost engine would be the best but expensive option.

What are you going to use as your tow vehicle?

Tires...humm. New tires for sure but not 'china bombs'. It will be difficult not to buy 'china bombs'. Maybe Maxxius tires if the right size.

Good luck




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Old 08-04-2016, 08:04   #11
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Re: Trailer question

I grin a little thinking 3,000 lbs as a load.
Beg, borrow, rent or buy an older Dodge with the Cummins Diesel in it, you'll never know its back there, plus if you had to stop in a hurry, it won't be an adventure
I got 12 MPG or so pulling my 14,000 lb fifth wheel behind my C3500 Duramax and that thing was like a parachute with the huge frontal area
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Old 08-04-2016, 10:39   #12
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Re: Trailer question

Strangely it doesn't seem to me that weight really effects fuel economy much, but drag is a killer.

Towing my 150 lbs (550 all up weight of trailer) A-Cat around I get about 15mpg, towing a J-22 and trailer (about 3,500lbs) I get 13mpg. Without either my truck gets 25.
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