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 Post subject: AI Trailers
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 8:44 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 6:39 pm
Posts: 101
Location: Venice, Florida
I bought the Rack and Roll Trailer with the extended tongue and spare tire ($1,999+$179+$149 +$163 sales tax =$2,490. I added the custom AI cradles for $220; then had to modify the trailer with a frame so cradles would be 67" apart as required for the perfect fit. The aluminum frame is two square tubes 2"x2"x70"x3/16" and two 2"x3"x45"x1/4" angle bars) at a cost of another $220. So I have as much money in my trailer as I do in my AI. Originally I justified it cause I can't store the boat outside in my deed restricted neighborhood--it had to go in the garage.

The tongue and the wheels come off and the frame leans up against the garage wall out of the way. The frame I added for the cradles has eye bolts at the 4 corners which allows my Harken Lift to hoist the boat, akas, amas, all still in place, to the garage ceiling.

Everything works as planned, but I'm still upset with myself for spending so much money on the trailer. Don't get me wrong the R&R is a great trailer--it gets as much attention as the AI. But before you go spending a lot of money, look at the high-end R&R, the low-end Harbor Freight trailer and others, then sit down and figure out what configuration you need--then go see a local welder to get you the material and cut it to size, so all you have to do is drill holes and bolt it all together--and probably save a $1,000 or more. :D

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Polecat
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Hobie AI & WS Tempest 180 Pro
SW Gulf Coast: Sarasota to Keys

I'm not completely useless. I can always serve as a bad example.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 25, 2008 9:22 am 
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Joined: Wed Feb 22, 2006 9:00 pm
Posts: 68
Here's a post on the Hobie section of Kayak Fishing Stuff, on how I economized my kayak trailer situation with a $1000 Malone kit and some plywood cradles I built.

http://kfs.infopop.cc/eve/forums/a/tpc/ ... 5141041835


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 Post subject: AI Trailers
PostPosted: Sat Oct 25, 2008 11:47 am 
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Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 6:39 pm
Posts: 101
Location: Venice, Florida
Hey Denizen!

Great post--should be of interest to many. I like how your cradle also supports the front of the ama as well as the rear--unlike Hobie's cradles that support only the rear--and cost $220. :roll:

Chekika pointed out the difficulty lifting the AI with akas and amas still attached and loading it on the trailer. I'm trying to make that easier by allowing my frame holding the cradles to slide back down toward the boat to eliminate much of the lift, where I can then attach a winch line to pull the frame and boat up on the trailer. The frame has eye-bolts that hook to a Harken Lift and raises the boat still assembled and supported on its cradles, up to the garage ceiling. So all I need now is an easy rollon/off method so loading/unloading at the beach isn't so tough on us old guys. I'll let you know what I come up with. :?

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Polecat
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Hobie AI & WS Tempest 180 Pro
SW Gulf Coast: Sarasota to Keys

I'm not completely useless. I can always serve as a bad example.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 25, 2008 1:30 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 10, 2007 3:36 pm
Posts: 171
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Hi Polecat,

I purchased a Rack & Roll trailer. Yep, they are a bit pricey but do a great job. Remember that you can spend a fair amount for roof racks.
The fact that it has the 16" tires and rolls easily, loaded, by hand is worth quite a bit.
Last week we had about 1/4 mile from the parking lot to the put in. I loaded 3-4 kayaks at a time and hand wheeled them to the put it. Try doing that with a low end Harbor Freight trailer with the small tires and extra weight across sod.
Your are correct in evaluating your needs. The low end trailer will work great if it fits the needs.
For me any trailer beats car topping them. I use the R&R when hauling only 1 kayak.
I plan on getting an AI for next year and will carry it on the R&R.

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Everything before 60 is just a rehearsal!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Oct 26, 2008 9:32 am 
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Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 6:34 pm
Posts: 138
Location: Northern VA
I went with the Trailex SUT-250 when I bought my AI in spring of 2007. In its original form I would carry two AIs, one on either side of the upright, laying upside down on their gunwales. I pull it with a MINI Cooper, so weight is certainly one of my main concerns. I put over 4000 highway miles on the rig the first summer.

Very soon I added one aluminum, cross bed pickup truck tool box, mounted lengthwise on one side of the trailer. This made a great place to store akas, mirage drives, seats & life preservers. Being a 72 inch box for a full size truck (I already had the box, so I used what was available.) it had enough room for the gear for two AIs.

Last winter I modded it a little bit more. Since almost all of the 4000 miles were at highway speed, from 100 to 400 miles at a time, I upgraded from the original 8 inch wheels to 12 inch wheels. Figured that would help the bearings a bit. Since a friend and I were planning to take the two AIs and go sailing for a week in the Florida Keys, I added a second tool box to the other side of the frame. This one I bought off ebay, and is sized for a small or mid sized pickup (60 inch). I didn't really need it for the AI gear, but a MINI convertible has virtually no trunk space. Two guys with a week plus worth of gear for sailing & camping. You get the idea.

This summer I added the Hobie AI cradle set on each side. I transport the boats rigged with amas & akas when I'm traveling locally. I can even leave the seat & Mirage Drive in place. For highway trips I still remove the amas & akas. The akas travel stowed in the tool boxes, and the amas stack in the center of the trailer, between each boat and the center upright. I do this because the MINI is such a narrow car, and with the amas rigged, I really lose rearward vision. If I tow with my truck, width & rear vision are not a problem, so I leave it all rigged.

There is one thing I would do differently if I were doing it all over, and if I were buying all new. I would get both toolboxes with 60 inch length. The 72 inch box means that my cradles have to be at least that far apart. It works that way, but it could be better. Still, it does the job quite nicely. It's easy to tow and maneuver. I get quite a few looks and comments with the rig, especially when towing with the MINI with the top down.

I don't have any pictures available, but I'll try to get some and post them.

- Jim L


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 Post subject: AI Trailers
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 12:05 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 03, 2006 6:00 pm
Posts: 2
Location: Virginia
Hi Polecat,

Hope to be sailing an AI this coming year but in the meantime I'm trying to figure out my means of transporting the boat. After reading your post I laughed because I'm faced with the same neighborhood restrictions. Was wondering if you purchased the KD65 or the KD78? My thought was that someday I'd like to be able to transport 2 AIs on the R&R. The owner and developer of R&R has stated that they are in the research/development stage of offering a kit to attach two AIs. Haven't heard much else from them. I suspect the only way to do so would be to disassemble and use J-craddles. Do you have any issues with the lights showing once your AI is loaded? The Hobie trailer (for 2 AIs) requires a middle tower so that the lights and plate can be seen properly. Any thoughts and or pictures would be appreciated since this is my last main hurdle before placing my AI order. Wife was the first hurdle until I rented two AIs for our 17th wedding anniversary. Now, I think she's on board!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 25, 2008 9:28 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 19, 2007 4:07 am
Posts: 598
Location: Punta Gorda, FL
Here's a Rack N Roll trailer with a custom AI cradle and a pair of beach wheels inserted in the cradle frame.

Image


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 26, 2008 5:07 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
Posts: 1886
Location: South Florida
Very nice rig, Tom.

Keith

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I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"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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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 26, 2008 12:27 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 8:54 am
Posts: 61
Location: Albuquerque
I'd still recommend seeing the Carnai Trailer if cost is an issue. I used mine on the backroads of Utah and it stayed together and the AI. Sometimes a slightly beefier and cheaper trailer is a better long term deal, just be careful about spacing the cradles so if you carry two AI's..(I do) the ama will not touch causing rubbing of the finish...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 27, 2008 5:52 am 
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Joined: Wed Dec 19, 2007 4:07 am
Posts: 598
Location: Punta Gorda, FL
Mine rub together a bit, depending on how I load them. I put a small towel or piece of carpet between the amas where they rub. Or, I just let 'em rub. It just scuffs the surface, and won't do any harm for a very, very long time. I don't plan to live that long. ;)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Dec 28, 2008 12:29 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 8:54 am
Posts: 61
Location: Albuquerque
I respaced the cradles on the Carnai trailer and they don't rub at all now.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Dec 28, 2008 12:57 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2007 11:46 am
Posts: 76
Location: sacramento
Trailer Owners:
Say.. can some you guys post back your thoughts on the double AI trailer with the small wheels. Is that the hold up, or the deal that it cannot be reduced in size for storage? I have resisted purshase because of the wheel size. Backing all the way into the water for float on/off would be of great advantage as compared to my current loading system. The wheel bearings seal out the water? High speed travel sway? It would seem that 2500$ for a system that works and can be bought at the store is an easier choice. I do not like the look of the loaded AI trailer. The trailers I like are of dual use and run at 7-10,000. May not be backed into the water due to weight ,angle, & traction. If Hobie would improve the appearance with larger wheels and some type of railing. Seems that I have read that the Hobie trailers are manfactured up in Org/Washington area. Wonder what Matt might say as to the continued wheel size that is not liked buy the customer. Seems as if the answer is to buy a new boat trailer and pay welder to modify. Again with the price and no dual use. Wating untill I see the best fit, then only to find the funds before an 07 AI with continue upgrades gives way to a 2010 model. will probley just give up and buy the dual AI model...Just can't get past the appearance.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Dec 28, 2008 1:04 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 8:54 am
Posts: 61
Location: Albuquerque
No problem with the small wheel size and easy to find. Trailered mine all the way from CA to NM over the back roads and did just fine. I too wanted the larger wheels at first but the lower to the ground makes it easier to load and unload the AIs and keeps the center of gravity of the trailer lower....just use good straps and tie off the front and rear of the AI for good measure.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Dec 28, 2008 2:17 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 5:17 pm
Posts: 203
Location: Ettalong Beach, Central Coast, Australia
Ranger1 wrote:
but the lower to the ground makes it easier to load and unload the AIs and keeps the center of gravity of the trailer lower....just use good straps and tie off the front and rear of the AI for good measure.


Yup lower to the ground is much much easier to handle. I initially used my old H14 trailer, then later modified a small luggage trailer. While the box trailer is multi use, and the space for gear wonderful, I have had to make up a spacial cradle to load and unload on my own.

Geoff.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 4:40 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:25 pm
Posts: 2011
Location: Central Coast NSW Australia
Geoff,
I agree that lower to the ground makes a big difference!
Have you changed your set-up?
I have and am now in the middle of changing it again. :wink:
I removed the sides from the trailer and added a top section for the ama, along with a small roof box for the seats, drives etc.

Image

Image

Image
I have been using this for the past month but have found it takes too long to pack up so I am now trying to transport the AI's assembled.

Image
Using the Rhino rack kayak holders the ama sit nicely on the rack bar.
Image
It makes loading/unloading much quicker. 8)
I clip the cart on before sliding the AI off which was one of Roadrunners great ideas.
I am almost finished adding a top level for the second AI.


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