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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:51 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 15, 2010 2:31 pm
Posts: 71
Location: Houston, Texas
I've had a Trailex SUT-200 for two years now (purchased January 2011). Here are some of my observations and opinions...

I ordered it from a local Hobie dealer, but built it myself in my garage. This is the Trailex trailer specifically from Hobie for hauling the TI.

Initially, the somewhat generic instructions were a bit confusing and even contradictory in places, but I managed to get the thing properly built up for hauling my TI.

Within the first few months of ownership I made several upgrades including: 1.) the addition of a winch, 2.) a bow stop & bow cradle, 3.) additional tie-down points for the amas, 4.) retractable ratcheting tie-down straps for the main hull, 5.) a handle near the hitch reciever, 6.) bearing buddies, 7.) a spare tire, 8.) a red safety flag attached to the TI rudder while on the trailer, and 9.) a red bike light clipped to the TI rudder (for night travel).

Overall, my Trailex SUT-200 has performed well on several road trips in excess of 400 miles (round trip) and on several local trips of 100 miles (round trip). No major complaints.

However...

Without any suspension, I have this nagging feeling that my beloved TI is taking an unnecessary beating with every pothole and railroad track I cross.

Moreover, the SUT-200 has a listed weight limit of 200 lbs. and yet the boat itself comes in at about 190 lbs. when rigged. With all of the mods I've made to my boat, I'm sure I'm well past that weight limit. In my mind, it never made sense that this trailer has a max capacity of 200 lbs., and yet, the load it is intended to carry comes very close to that MAX capacity. In other words, there's precious little room for the "real world" here.

Yes, I'm sure the trailer can actually handle 400 lbs., but the manufacturer listed it at 200. I was taught to work within the listed tolerance of any given machine, so having a load that probably exceeds the indicated max rating rubs me against the grain.

One last thing... the TI is long enough and heavy enough to warrant a third cradle. Yes, two are sufficient for short trips to the beach, but once again, this denies the "real world" wherein some of us are traveling hundreds of miles per trip, and even storing the TI on the trailer permanently (present author included).

Although I have no serious complaints, I really think the Trailex SUT-350 is a MUCH better option for hauling the TI. The factory suspension is sure to give a more gentle ride, and the higher load tolerance would be pretty hard to exceed, no matter what mods were made to the boat. Also, a third cradle would be great (though this isn't a standard feature of the 350).

In the near future, I'm either going to upgrade to a 350 and add a third cradle myself, or modify my existing trailer by adding suspension and a third cradle. I really feel that's the trailer this boat needs if we are to do things right.

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Houston, TX.
2010 Golden Papaya TI, "Trifurcatus"
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 10:14 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2005 6:29 pm
Posts: 2383
Location: High Point, NC
The standard Trailex SUT-350-s is not designed specifically for the TI - you'll have to leave off some assorted pieces and install the Hobie cradles (or similar) on your own, and once done it's a heck of a nice trailer for these boats. They will sell you one, but maybe not direct. They might require you to go through a Trailex dealer. There are plenty of those.

I bought the 350 and like it a great deal. The soft springs are perfect for the TI's weight. They flex nicely under small bumps but have enough travel for soaking up larger bumps as well. I wish I had bought the same trailer for my AI.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 11:37 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 19, 2010 7:53 am
Posts: 297
Location: Palm City, Florida
I totally agree with what Tom and georebs are saying, particularly in regards to the load rating, extra gear, future mods to the TI and the trailer itself.

My SUT 350-S is over 2 1/2 years old and although I've made changes to the original set up viewtopic.php?f=69&t=35469
I'm still very happy with it.

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Ezra Appel
Palm City, Florida
2014 Tandem Island


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2015 9:36 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 22, 2011 3:15 pm
Posts: 183
Location: Camas, WA
IslandHoppa27 wrote:
Yep, I've been warned about the Harbor Freight and salt water. I figure if I ever start going into the ocean in a year or so I'll be ready to upgrade to a better trailer. Right now I'm happy with it and it was super cheap.

I do dunk the axles when I launch, I haven't pulled the bearings in the 3 months I've had it, probably time to take it apart and check.

I'm thinking about putting some Bearing Buddies on it but someone told me they may not be helpful. Any opinions?


Well it's been over 4 years and the trailer is still doing fine. I never did get around to installing the bearing buddies and have used it a bit in the salt with no issues. Probably have a few thousand rolling miles without a "hitch". Speaking of which, I recently had a buddy weld a 6' piece of 2"x"2 steel tube to extend the tongue which dramatically improved the weight distribution and tracking. I do intend to replace the bearings and install the bearing buddies soon.

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Dune TI - 6/4/2011
Camas, WA


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2015 2:18 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
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Location: South Florida
IslandHoppa27 wrote:
IslandHoppa27 wrote:
Yep, I've been warned about the Harbor Freight and salt water. I figure if I ever start going into the ocean in a year or so I'll be ready to upgrade to a better trailer. Right now I'm happy with it and it was super cheap.

I do dunk the axles when I launch, I haven't pulled the bearings in the 3 months I've had it, probably time to take it apart and check.

I'm thinking about putting some Bearing Buddies on it but someone told me they may not be helpful. Any opinions?


Well it's been over 4 years and the trailer is still doing fine. I never did get around to installing the bearing buddies and have used it a bit in the salt with no issues. Probably have a few thousand rolling miles without a "hitch". Speaking of which, I recently had a buddy weld a 6' piece of 2"x"2 steel tube to extend the tongue which dramatically improved the weight distribution and tracking. I do intend to replace the bearings and install the bearing buddies soon.

Those of us who have rusted out whole cars are amazed with your comments. Now, I'm assuming that you have dunked your trailer in saltwater once or twice. You are not the first to claim no problems with occasionally dunking a steel trailer in saltwater or transporting your Island on top of your car after use in saltwater. I'm beginning to think the difference between your experience and ours is that you don't live in a saltwater environment. In Camas, WA, you live about 100 mi inland from the ocean, as did one other person who claimed no problem with saltwater.

For you, that is wonderful! The rest of us, on the edge of the ocean, have to be very careful.

Keith

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"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2015 3:18 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2011 1:58 am
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Location: Forster, NSW, Australia
Keith, I am a bit perplexed about this, and almost feeling guilty... I ALWAYS dunk my galavanised trailer to above the hubs, and have done so at least 3-400 times in the past three years. There are a few signs of minor surface rust, and the rear roller probably needs lubricating, but everything is otherwise just fine. I do admit that I >always< hose the TI and trailer down with a fresh water hose after every use.

I live 300 metres east of a 74km2 salt water lake, and 2km south of the ocean shoreline, and can hear the surf once the traffic dies down, so my environment would have to be fairly salt-laden.

Maybe I am just lucky....

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2012 Tandem Island "SIC EM" with Hobie spinnaker!


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2015 4:52 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
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Location: South Florida
Well, my galvanized trailer is 22 yrs old and still going (I sold it last spring), although it has rusted out springs and axles from time to time--those, of course, are ordinary steel. But, these people are also talking ordinary steel (iron), but they are NOT on the ocean.

Keith

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"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2015 8:20 am 
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Location: Forster, NSW, Australia
Gotcha Keith, I didn't realise they were not talking about galvanised steel...

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2012 Tandem Island "SIC EM" with Hobie spinnaker!


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2015 10:13 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 22, 2011 3:15 pm
Posts: 183
Location: Camas, WA
True, I've only launched into salt maybe 6-8 times in 4 years. I mostly fish the Columbia and Willamette Rivers and some fresh water lakes. The Harbor Freight frame is painted and though it's held up pretty well I'm planning to repaint this season. The new steel tongue has already rusted in 2 weeks in the rain! Any paint recommendations?


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Dune TI - 6/4/2011
Camas, WA


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2016 6:09 am 
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Joined: Sat May 09, 2015 8:53 am
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Location: Paoli Pennsylvania - East Coast USA
IslandHoppa27 wrote:
IslandHoppa27 wrote:
Well it's been over 4 years and the trailer is still doing fine. I never did get around to installing the bearing buddies and have used it a bit in the salt with no issues. Probably have a few thousand rolling miles without a "hitch".
Did you stick with the semi-hard beveled edges on the 4x4's or round them off more for a closer fit?

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66" Yakima Rack-n-Roll Trailer
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