How to choose the right size trailer for your boat
So, you’ve got a boat.
Congrats, you’re one step closer to nautical freedom. But before you put on your Gilligan hat, you’ll need to get that boat to the lake, safely.
That’s where knowing what size, brands (*cough* Karavan *cough*) and styles of trailers are available becomes very important. Here are a few [un]biased tips and tricks in selecting the best trailer to lure your boat to water’s edge.
First things first, you’ll want to take into close consideration the following weight and dimension of your pride and joy:
What’s Your Boat’s Weight?
Really important note here, and one that’s easily forgotten, make sure you include the weight of your engine, fuel and (potential) water on-board. You can do this by either scaling your existing set-up (and subtracting the weight of your old trailer) or by a trusty Google search. In addition, you’ll probably want to account for a 10% beer gear allowance.
What’s Your Boat’s Length?
Not necessarily the length from tip-to-tip, but more so the distance between your boat’s bow-eye (u-bolt on the bow stem) to the rear transom (vertical section that makes up the rear). There’s no need to include the length of your swim deck if it’s not part of your boat’s hull though, just let that baby hangout.
What’s Your Boat’s Width?
Consider the low-spot or bottom-width of your boat’s hull at the rear and between the fenders, these widths will ensure that the trailer bunks are positioned for your boat to sit securely and make loading and unloading a lot easier.
We’ve created a trusty drawing for you to scribe your dimensions, download the PDF here.
Now for the really important [legal] stuff. You’ll want to make sure that you’re familiar with your Provincial or State Regulations with regard to trailer brake requirements. Compliance to these regulations will vary from region to region, so make sure you check disc-brake requirements for single, tandem and tri-axle trailers.
Last (but not least) if there’s room in your budget, there are a number of different bunk, roller, adjustable and custom trailer configurations that you can consider to help caress your vessel in all the right places.
If all else fails, just give us a holler.