Try not to spoil you day by
forgetting something simple.
It's easy done, yea I've been
there. I'm guilty of
having launched a boat without securing the bow line, then watching
shore as she drifted away. Fortunately that day there was an onshore
just as important, no one watching.
One of the advantages of
trailer boating is that much of
the preparation can be done before you even leave home.
However the most important
preparation come when you have
reached the launch site but before you venture on to the ramp.
First remove any covers,
safety straps and the trailer
You can then get all your
gear into the boat ready to
go to sea.
Check that you've got
enough life-jackets on
board and the radio and GPS are on board and working.
If using an outboard take
it off the tilt, and put the
keys in the ignition so you know where they are.
Check the fuel and oil if
necessary and prime the fuel
Oh, and don't forget that
bow line so she doesn't float away without you.
It is very easy to
spoil a great day out by screwing up the recovery of your boat.
Ideally you will need someone
ashore who can reverse the
car and boat trailer down the slip and someone on the boat who is able
And a two way radio is an
ideal way for both parties to
keep in contact.
Try to time your recovery for
If you do have a cross current
or tide it is best to
easiest to take the boat upstream of the slip.
Line her up with the bank and
allow her to drift down
towards the boat trailer keeping her in line with the trailer.
Alternatively have someone
control the angle of the boat
with stern and bow lines.
Allowing her to drift out of
line could result in a lot of messing about and probably nasty
scratches on the
Getting it wrong however, will
entertain any onlookers,
and there are sure to be plenty of spectators around if you cock up.
With a roller style boat
trailer, reverse it in until the
wheel hubs are just clear of the water, then drive the boat slowly up
trailer, clip the trailer winch strop onto the boat, turn the engine
winch the boat onto the trailer.
If your trailer is the type
you need to float onto, then
it will need to be pushed in deeper, on the end of a rope.
To assist in location, it will
help to have some uprights
on the trailer as markers, especially if the water is murky.
Bring the boat slowly over the
As soon as you are sure she in
position over the trailer
you will need to keep her there as the trailer is slowly pulled in.
When the boat begins to engage
with the trailer attach
the winch and a safety line.
Make sure she is safely
attached before pulling her up the ramp.
Once on the level, away from
the ramp you can start to
get your boat and boat trailer ready for the road.
With a bit of practice and
careful preparation launching
and recovering your trailer-boat will become easier and less
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I am perfectly aware that the majority of Wooden Boat aficionados are sensible folk. However, I need to point out that I am an amateur wooden boat enthusiast simply writing in order to try to help other amateur wooden boat enthusiasts. And while I take every care to ensure that the information in DIY Wood Boat.com is correct, anyone acting on the information on this website does so at their own risk.