Boat Trailer Guide Suggestions !

studiocat13

Active Member
Messages
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Location
Charlotte, NC
Water Crafts
Looking to buy a Sea Doo 210 Challenger
#1
Hey Guys,
Looking to add some boat guides to my trailer for my 2012 Challenger but I'm not sure what type will work best. I need to be able to pull the boat up on the trailer by hand/rope and have it line up properly. Sometimes I launch and load by myself, most of the time it will go on correctly but I have had issues where it does not line up and ends up being cocked to one side and not seated on the bunks correctly which means I have to back the boat into the water again and try to align it which is not a good option, ever. I see there are two types, bunk type glides and pole type so I'm just looking for some input as to which may be the best option for my purpose. Thanks in advance for your help !
 


JPass

Well-Known Member
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Location
Orlando, FL
Water Crafts
2012 Challenger 210 SE
#2
We use crash poles and I launch solo quite often. How's the spacing on your trailer bunks? That could be causing you some issues as well.
 

slaizer2000

Active Member
Messages
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Location
Rochester, NY
Water Crafts
2007 Seadoo Islandia SE
#3
I had issues with either it being crooked or one side being higher. Often doing it myself and finding out it's on wrong after pulling it out of the water (my first boat so still a semi-newbie). Often issues occur with strong waves or low tide. I went with the bunk rails which seems to help alot. Really helps guide it on straight and even. Also seems to make it easy to winch by hand ever since putting them on.

What I got. Works for me.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001445EUW/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
 
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Location
GA
#4
Try keeping the trailer further out of water on recovery, than you
do on launching. If trailer is too deep on recovery, the boat will
be floating over the bunks, and they won't help in centering the
keel. Use the trailer winch strap to pull boat the final foot or
so and the bunks will center it.

AFA "guide-ons", I don't use them for 'guiding on' the trailer---
I see them as aids for backing an empty trailer, and for helping
other people see there's an empty trailer behind my truck, in
the ramp parking lot.
 

studiocat13

Active Member
Messages
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Location
Charlotte, NC
Water Crafts
Looking to buy a Sea Doo 210 Challenger
#5
I had issues with either it being crooked or one side being higher. Often doing it myself and finding out it's on wrong after pulling it out of the water (my first boat so still a semi-newbie). Often issues occur with strong waves or low tide. I went with the bunk rails which seems to help alot. Really helps guide it on straight and even. Also seems to make it easy to winch by hand ever since putting them on.

What I got. Works for me.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001445EUW/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
Thats the same issue I am having, some of it is probably having the trailer too deep but with wind and current I think the rails you have would certiainly make it easier. Gonna give them a try and see how they do. Thanks for your help !
 

studiocat13

Active Member
Messages
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Location
Charlotte, NC
Water Crafts
Looking to buy a Sea Doo 210 Challenger
#6
Thanks for everyones advice and help on this ! gonna gove the rails a trya dn try not to back the trailer so deep and see if that cures my issue. Thanks Again !
 

JPass

Well-Known Member
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Location
Orlando, FL
Water Crafts
2012 Challenger 210 SE
#7
When I retrieve our boat, I put the trailer in so the top 8-10 inches of the front of the bunks are out of the water and/or the fenders are under water an inch or 2.
 

10forty2

Active Member
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Location
NC
Water Crafts
2005 Sea Doo Speedster 200
#8
When I retrieve our boat, I put the trailer in so the top 8-10 inches of the front of the bunks are out of the water and/or the fenders are under water an inch or 2.

Same here. Top of trailer fenders are maybe just out of water, depending on wind and water conditions at the ramp. I've only had one time that I got on sideways and had to go back in the water for a second try. I probably come in hotter than many boaters, but I've found that with the jet drives, it helps to line up and go for it rather than trying to float in on minimal propulsion with the neutral gate down. So far, so good.... hopefully I never launch ahead into the truck's tailgate... LOL!:rolleyes:
 

briancayko

Active Member
Messages
190
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Location
Montana
Water Crafts
2010 210 Challenger SE 310HP (twin 155's)
#9
I have the same ones as linked above. They work great especially when it is windy or in the river with current. Straight on every time since installing them last spring.
 
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Location
GA
#11
When I retrieve our boat, I put the trailer in so the top 8-10 inches of the front of the bunks are out of the water and/or the fenders are under water an inch or 2.
Amount of exposed bunks vs fenders will vary, based on slope of the ramp.

It's something you'll get a feel for, after doing a few launches and recoveries.

Where I'm at, our tides average a seven foot swing, approaching 9' on full/new
moons. If you're recovering during mid-tide and don't do your part, relying on
a guide-on to control the boat will get you a broken guide-on (guess how I know,
;)). The more experience you have at the helm, the easier it gets.
 

studiocat13

Active Member
Messages
133
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Location
Charlotte, NC
Water Crafts
Looking to buy a Sea Doo 210 Challenger
#12
Amount of exposed bunks vs fenders will vary, based on slope of the ramp.

It's something you'll get a feel for, after doing a few launches and recoveries.

Where I'm at, our tides average a seven foot swing, approaching 9' on full/new
moons. If you're recovering during mid-tide and don't do your part, relying on
a guide-on to control the boat will get you a broken guide-on (guess how I know,
;)). The more experience you have at the helm, the easier it gets.
Thanks Steve, I don't have any issues when loading if I actually drive the boat up onto the trailer, problem occurs when I just want to pull the boat on with the rope as this is usually quicker when I launch and load by myself. I have actually gotten pretty good at docking and sterring the boat especially with the new Thrust Vector !
 
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Location
Virginia Sea Level
Water Crafts
2001 Sportster LE 951 Carbed
#13
Is your trailer level when it's being towed? If the tongue is way high, it can make loading a little more difficult.

Maybe the trailer is too deep? It might help to drive the boat onto the not-quite-as-deep trailer bunks if you're launching alone, in this case the bunks hold it in place. Otherwise you need a second person to keep the boat centered when floating onto a deep trailer.

The bow vee on the winch stand must be below rub rail height with the floating the boat onto the trailer approach, not necessary for the drive-on approach as the bunks will lift the bow and hold the boat in place. Until you get it nailed for your ramp beware of winch stand vee position though, don't want to hook the rub rail under the winch stand.

All of this changes with steepness of ramp too, you may find normal depth of trailer on one ramp doesn't work well on a ramp of steeper angle, thus driving the boat up onto the bunks is IMO, a good approach when possible.

Beware if too much power is necessary to do this(trailer isn't quite deep enough), you risk sucking debris off the bottom into the jet pump.

Once you get it at the right position, note the water level such as distance of vehicle bumper from water as a quick reference.

If some places it's just too rough or the wind howls, really steep ramp angle bla-bla, there are bars that can be mounted on the rear corners of the trailer that work well for centering the boat.

There could be other issues as well, like the bunks are too low where the boat is sitting on the fenders or the fenders are too high.
 
Messages
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Location
GA
#14
...problem occurs when I just want to pull the boat on with the rope as this is usually quicker when I launch and load by myself. I have actually gotten pretty good at docking and sterring the boat especially with the new Thrust Vector !
I've seen dock/ramp setups on youtube, etc, where you can "walk" the boat off trailer, right to
dock--but all the ramps in my area require launching from trailer, and motoring over to dock.

The biggest thing that helped me out in working the boat around dock & trailer, was learning
to use the F/N/R lever alone (leaving throttle lever all the way down). Once I figured that out, the
rest was cake!
 

slaizer2000

Active Member
Messages
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Location
Rochester, NY
Water Crafts
2007 Seadoo Islandia SE
#17
I have my bunk guides pretty much butted up to the boat. About a finger width gap so it’s not too tight. Does having them so far out defeat the purpose of them guiding the boat on?
 

briancayko

Active Member
Messages
190
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Location
Montana
Water Crafts
2010 210 Challenger SE 310HP (twin 155's)
#18
I could definitely move them in some & maybe should but as is they still work fine to guide me in & center me. Last year was my first season with them so maybe this year I will move them in some more. It still makes a big difference in wind and current. Thanks for the tip.
 

slaizer2000

Active Member
Messages
100
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Location
Rochester, NY
Water Crafts
2007 Seadoo Islandia SE
#19
I’m just going by the pics on the reviews up on amazon. Looks like most people have them much closer but if it works as is then perhaps they don’t need to be as close.
 

JPass

Well-Known Member
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Location
Orlando, FL
Water Crafts
2012 Challenger 210 SE
#20
I believe they're out as far as they are due to the center bulge of the hull. The boat is widest near the helm area of the boat. It's most definitely narrower at the rear than the middle.

Our guide poles looks similar. When the widest portion of the boat goes past the posts, they actually touch the rub rail.
 

briancayko

Active Member
Messages
190
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Location
Montana
Water Crafts
2010 210 Challenger SE 310HP (twin 155's)
#22
I believe they're out as far as they are due to the center bulge of the hull. The boat is widest near the helm area of the boat. It's most definitely narrower at the rear than the middle.

Our guide poles looks similar. When the widest portion of the boat goes past the posts, they actually touch the rub rail.
I actually started moving mine in to see if it would make any difference & then looked at my boat & remembered that, that was the very reason i set them like I did. It’s a great point to look at if your installing them.
 

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