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 Post subject: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 10:16 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:30 am
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Hello!

I went in to see about modifying my trailer (get cross beams added to attach the pipe to) and they asked if I thought the trailer might be too heavy for a kayak. I pretty much said "don't know... It's the trailer I have...". I knew my trailer is a heavier duty one that some I see on this forum (used to carry an inboard 17" runabout, has 3-4" beams rather than beams I see carry smaller boats) but I didn't think it would be an issue - it's the only trailer I have, figured I'd use it, keep the roller claws and if ever need a bigger boat trailer, I'm set...

Anyone see a problem with bounce? I'd have thought heavier would bounce less than a smaller cart but I guess it depends on the spring. Could it hurt the kayak or, I don't know... dangerously bounce while driving?

Any help would be appreciated!


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 11:00 am 
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I don't see it hurting the kayak at all. I use a catamaran trailer which is pretty long. It only has 1 leaf spring so not much bounce. I added 3" pvc rails which makes laughing a breeze.
Image
This pic shows when I first had 2" pvc. It actually worked fine but I needed more height to avoid the hull hitting the trailer.

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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 3:40 pm 
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Location: High Point, NC
It really comes down to how the trailer is sprung. Most trailers were never intended for carry the very light load that a kayak or two puts on them. So the boats take a bit of a beating. Whether this hurts them or not seems to be in debate.

However, you can easily remove leaves from your spring pack to make your trailer ride a bit "softer." I routinely remove all but one leaf to get my trailers down to where they'll at least flex a bit under the couple to 300 pounds I put on them.

The springs Trailex sells for their 350 series trailers are pretty nice. My TI "floats" on that trailer. Probably is more comfortable than I am.


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 5:59 pm 
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Thanks for the pic, Yak Finaddic - you're happy with 3" as opposed to 4"? I was leaning towards 4, maybe 3” is a happy medium (2" seemed like the best fit for the grooves but 4 seemed easier to work with). Might re-look at 3.

Tom, thanks - that's great. I ran out to look at the leaves and they look like they are held on by U-bolts(?) and look like they may be removable, yay. There's four of them - I tried jumping on the trailer a bit and it barely flinched! Also good to know all the kayaks probably bounce to some degree, don't recall seeing any problems from it on the forum. Maybe some foam between the pipes and the boat - I guess you want to strap the boat down but not too tightly so there's some give? Or would I have that wrong? The straps would keep it from going anywhere but too tight might make it flex inappropriately. Letting it float a bit could keep the stress down?


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 7:12 pm 
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That looks like a great set up. Bounce is going to happen, so strap it down so it rides on the rails and does not leave the trailer rails. I would also tie it down at the bow and the stern.


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 7:28 pm 
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Take a look at the tire air pressure too....my Trailex/Hobie trailer, 4.8 x 8 tires are specified to only be inflated to 15 psi due to the light weight of the trailer and load.....my Outback loaded with gear is around 105 pounds.....the trailer tires are rated for about 600 pounds load at 50 psi ( by memory as I am away from home right now)...the trailer carry's my Outback and does not bounce around nor do the tires over heat after driving at freeway speeds of 65-70 mph.

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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 9:13 pm 
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I can check the tire pressure but... Are you saying the PSI is flexible depending on the weight it carries? I'll have to read the walls... I thought PSI was set in stone. But if they are a bit soft.. and if they heat up, there's room for expansion. I'll look into this too, sounds promising.


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2013 5:12 am 
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Hi Y-Y.....Yes....it's just like a car,truck or trailer where the maximum air pressure molded into the sidewall of the tire is set for the max load rating of the tire.
As an example, my Subaru's tire air pressure, for best performance are specified to be inflated to 32 psi by Subaru, while the maximum pressure rating set by the tire maker is about 50 psi.
I would estimate the total weight of your trailer and then research on line, the safe, lower/reduced tire pressure you can run the tires at.
Based on the photo of your trailer that looks like 12" tires, I bet you can reduce the tire pressure to 20 - 22 psi and it would be adequate for the load.
BTW....I modified my Trailex trailer so my Outback rides on/is cradled by parallel PVC pipes too.

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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2013 5:30 am 
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Without sufficent weight (kayak) on this trailer, you will probably bang the H out of your kayak each time you hit a bump. The leaf springs are designed to provide "give" for these situations. Each trailer is rated for load weight with corresponding springs.

I ended up taking two of the leafs out of my trailer so that the springs could act like springs each time I hit a bump.


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2013 5:53 am 
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Location: High Point, NC
If your trailer bounces, then it's too heavily sprung for the load you're carrying on it.

Yes you can remove some leaves from your spring pack to soften the ride. The locking nuts on the U-bolts may be heavily rusted, however, so soak them with penetrant for a day before attempting to remove them. You'll want to use new lock nuts when reinstalling. Companies like Northern Tool and Harbor Freight sell complete axle U-bolt kits for not much money. Sometimes it's easier to just go back with these, depending on the condition of your present axle hardware.


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2013 6:34 pm 
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Hi all!

Definitely too well sprung. Took the trailer out today to see how it rolled and it didn't seem too bad but over a couple "in town" bumps I got air.

Using Tapatalk, here's a pic of my trailer (if it loads right). Hard to tell from the angle - the pic makes it look longer and narrower than it is. For size perspective, the tires are car tire sized. What I really like about it is the flat topped fenders - you can lean/sit on them and they're like portable work tables. I have sawed off them a time or two. :-)

Image

Thanks for everyone's input!


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer too heavy?
PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2013 7:23 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 13, 2012 11:30 am
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Location: Charleston, SC
My trailer was light as well - my solution was to add a piece of 1" plywood as a deck under the bunks - it added weight to the trailer, and it serves a purpose as I can haul other stuff with the trailer too (when not hauling my Hobie) :D

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