Trailering questions

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Trailering questions

Postby SKI3PO on Wed May 16, 2018 10:13 am

Greetings from the Alderson family in Anchorage, AK. We are under contract to purchase a 2014 R27 Classic. Our family is very excited to join the Ranger Tug community. I have spent a lot on freshwater boats, but this is a whole new ball game. I have a couple of neophyte questions and would any feedback as we learn about life on the water:

1. Trailering vs. leaving in the water at a slip. pros and cons? We will be using our boat a couple of long weekends a month. Is it better to take it out each time or leave it in the water.

2. Bottom paint? Some have said get this, others say just pressure wash your boat every time you take it out. Pros and cons?

3. Anyone pull their R27 with a Toyota Tundra? How does it handle the load? The R27 is at the lake mit of the towing capacity and I am worried it will be under powered.

4. Our dinghy doesn’t have an outboard and I want to get one. What type of mounting bracket should I get to store onboard? I’m thinking 4hp for running our dogs ashore to do their business.

Thanks for any insights. We will based out of Seward this summer if anyone is passing through.

Tim, Laurie, Liza (11), Harriet (9), dogs: Chester, Daisy, Snowball
Tim Alderson
"Clementine"
2014 R27 Classic
Anchorage, AK
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby scross on Wed May 16, 2018 11:06 am

I tow my 2009 RT 25 Classic with a specially equipped Toyota Tundra 4x4. Remember the Tundra towing the Space Shuttle in LA? That's how mine is set up!

On the trailer my boat weighs in at about 9,700 pounds. I have a small margin at that weight over what is the rated Tundra's max towing capacity. To get down to that weight, there are little to no liquids in any of the tanks when towing. I tow about 1,800 miles per year up and down some pretty steep grades.

The RT 27 will weigh much more than the RT 25. You will need a bigger truck!

Lots of prior threads on your questions. Suggest a search!
Vicki Foley and Al Thomas
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby Red Raven on Wed May 16, 2018 3:15 pm

We have a 2014 R27 Classic. Here my thoughts:

1. Trailering vs. leaving in the water at a slip. —> I think this is mostly a cost vs. convenience issue. For us we are much more likely to use the boat if it is at a slip. In our situation the hassle to haul the boat out of the garage and take it to a launch is a fairly large time consumer so we only do it once a year and keep it at the slip all summer. Your access to a suitable launch and tolerance for the extra time vs the cost of a slip will be different.

2. Bottom paint? —>Depends on your decision to #1 above. If you trailer every time, don’t paint, just wash. If you leave it in a slip more than a month then paint the bottom.

3. Anyone pull their R27 with a Toyota Tundra? —> I don’t know about the Tundra. Our R27 likely weighs more than 11,000 lbs on the trailer with the gear and fuel. (I haven’t actually weighed it). I would not be comfortable using anything less than a 3/4 ton with 4 wheel drive myself. We borrow a relative’s 1 ton Dodge Deisel to launch and retrieve. I think it depends on where the ramp is relative to the house. I know that Ranger Tugs delivered our R27 with a 1/2 ton truck but we are within a few hours of the factory. If you are close to the launch you may be OK if you keep it light.

4. Our dinghy doesn’t have an outboard and I want to get one. What type of mounting bracket should I get to store onboard? I’m thinking 4hp... —> Sea Dog makes a suitable mounting bracket but if you want to mount to the swim rail some modifications are required. See our photo album for details or send me a PM. 2.5 hp is much lighter and entirely sufficient to get to shore at the dinghy hull speed. The 4hp Yamaha is the same weight as the 6hp and the 4hp will not plane the dinghy with one adult while the 6hp will. No reason for the 4hp in my opinion. Get the 2.5hp to get to shore or get the 6hp if you want to plane (the 6 could probably plane with two kids).
[/quote]
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby Cutwater28GG on Wed May 16, 2018 3:50 pm

Either 2.5hp or 6hp for gas powered outboard - weight is the deciding factor; or a torqueedo for electric.

Our boat is in the water all year round in the Washington. bottom paint lasts about 2.5 years. boating season on good weather days is so limited I dont want any restriction on being able to to use the boat. even the idea of drystacking is off putting.

you bought it - why not maximise the usage? even if it means sitting in the cockpit on a nice evening in the marina? your favorite beverage tastes better on a boat.
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby Osprey on Wed May 16, 2018 4:04 pm

I have a R27 which I trailer so there is my preference. Most of my comments below are simply opinions. What is what is important, what is a positive and what is a negative varies from individual to individual.
RAMP COMMENTS:
I use the boat only for cruises of 1 to 3 weeks duration. For me, shorter trips, for say less than a few days, are not really practical. One needs to consider the characteristics of the ramp to be used. For the ramp I use the tide level needs to be at least 10 ft (Canadian datum, US datum is different), so I have to time my launch and reload based on tide. I cannot launch any given morning and reload any given evening based only on my desired boating activity. Another ramp consideration is the ramp subject to wave action from strong winds. Is there suitable parking at the launch location? For my truck + trailer I need at least a 50 foot parking stall.
SECURITY, FEES
Security also needs to be compared for marina tie up, land location storage and temporary launch site truck and trailer parking. How much does it cost for marina tie up, land storage and for parking the truck and trailer at the launch site?
MAINTENANCE SERVICING:
For an on a trailer stored boat maintenance is less and servicing more convenient than for an on the water stored boat. For example, my boat is never in the water for more than 3 weeks at a time so no bottom paint. Keep in mind though that the trailer needs maintenance. (tires, brakes).
BOTTOM PAINT.
How long a boat stays in the water before bottom paint is necessary varies from location to location i.e. water quality and temperature. I have read one reliable opinion that 30 days is a rough cut off. As mentioned above for my use, up to 3 weeks , results on negligible growth (Pacific North West.) All I do is rinse the bottom and apply a bit of a brushing between uses.
TRUCK
One really should not try to just "make do" here. My view is a "3/4 ton (a 2500) is a minimum for towing a R27. Absolutely do not exceed the truck's tow rating. Note that some ramps are slick (a combination of a wet surface and marine weed) so a 2 wheel drive truck hitched to a heavy boat will be unable to pull the boat/trailer up the ramp. The need for a serious truck, with 4 wheel drive, can be the deciding factor between choosing the trailer or marina tie up options.
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby Todd2 on Wed May 16, 2018 6:32 pm

I tow an R27 with a 2012 Dodge 2500 diesel 4x4. It tows the boat long distances, but you won't forget it's back there. The Dodge 3500 adds one "helper" or "overload" spring leaf to each rear spring pack (other brands have other more meaningful differences). Besides the two leafs, the 3500 truck is identical to the 2500 trucks (well.... except for the badging :) ). If you really want a difference, opt for the dually 3500 for more stability and towing capacity (but no more automatic car washes for you). Also, I'll second that late in the boating season, in Texas at least, all the fresh water boat ramps are covered in slippery green algae. Four wheel drive is a must (or another truck with a tow strap, maybe both) BEFORE you sink your truck. Google "Boat Ramp Fail YouTube Videos" - when you have a few hours to spare.

When we were 'young' we'd ratchet strap the trailer up tight under the boat and goose it to help push our 2-wheel drive trucks up the ramp far enough to gain enough traction to get out. With good coordination between truck and boat drivers, we never lost one, but we did come close a couple of times. We sure drew a crowd. Ahhh, the good old days, when we were broke, young and stupidly invincible - but we sure had fun. P.S. Don't try this at home!

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Re: Trailering questions

Postby Cutwater28GG on Wed May 16, 2018 7:36 pm

also if you keep the boat in the water all year you can sell that trailer! thats what; $14k just sitting there?
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby scross on Wed May 16, 2018 8:03 pm

Trailer is a one time “sunk” cost ( sorry, my finance background showing ) versus the ongoing expense of full time moorage+storage if you don’t have a trailer. Our new trailer was about $11,000 and we figured additional moorage+storage to be about $2,500 to $3,500 a year. Crossover point for us is about 4-5 years. Expect our aluminum trailer to have decent residual value at 5 years which makes the crossover point shorter.
Benefit of trailer is easier maintenance and flexibility of moving boat to different interesting places. And doing so much cheaper and easier than having the boat professionally shipped. But, on the other side, nice to have the boat in the water and ready to go all the time with moorage+storage!
Bottom line to trailer vs full time moorage+storage question is that there’s no free lunch! After all these are BOATs - as in Break Out Another Thousand!
Vicki Foley and Al Thomas
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby S@LTD on Thu May 17, 2018 12:20 am

We are in the trailering no bottom paint category and routinely launch and load our CW28 a couple times a week during peak season.We tow with a 4x4 diesel 3/4 ton and it works great (goes through car washes too :lol:). Our reason for trailering is we do not live close to any one body of water we would want to leave our boat in full time. In our area we go from SF Bay to Lake Tahoe and everywhere in between. We do evenings, weekends and longer term trips like Lake Powell or PNW. If we lived in the PNW or in your neck of the woods I might lean more toward a covered slip on a lift if available as these offer expansive cruising grounds. Although I do like keeping in the shop on the trailer as it is easier for maintenance and do not have to worry about security.

I did make a number of modifications to our trailer to make it easier to launch and retrieve.I found the EZ Loader factory setup was a bear to get it load easily and consistently especially when ramp steepness vary. I also never liked how quickly the bunks wore out or having to slam on the brakes in the parking lot to get it to slide that last 4 inches to the stop. Now it works like a dream wind or calm. Admittedly it helps when the wife is running the rig.
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby trailertrawlerkismet on Thu May 17, 2018 4:28 am

Like most things related to boating, the answers depend!!! Depend on how one uses there boat. We trailer long distances so we need a trailer and diesel powered 4x4. When we head anywhere out of our home waters we typically keep the boat in the water for 2 to 3 months at a time, so we need to have bottom paint. When we are in our home waters we keep the boat on its trailer and launch the boat when we off for a few days, then back onto trailer and into storage. Then there are the times we'll launch and leave in the water for a month at a time, while we're doing extended cruising. That's us and there are probably many other options depending!!!! There is no right or wrong way only what is best for you. I do like "across'" post about his break even analogy but again this depends on how one uses there boat, for me "across'" method makes sense.

Jim F
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby Margaret Lower on Thu May 17, 2018 2:05 pm

Greetings from Oklahoma...enroute to Alaska next month towing our new (to us) R25 Ranger Tug. We have been coming to Alaska for the summers most ever year for 20 years. Our "camp" is on the Kenai River at Soldotna. All these years we're been content to fish the river with an occasional trip to Seward or Homer. Our little 20 foot river boat does ok in Kachemak Bay until the chop gets above 2 feet!!

With that short introduction, we sure hope our paths cross this summer as both of us experience a new adventure.

We have been to Seward many times to launch our smaller boat. If I recall, the ramp there is a gentle slope and your Toyota should launch and retrieve the boat just fine. Also, as you prolly well know, there is ample parking. Your dilemma about permanently leaving the boat in the water causes me to ask: CAN YOU EVEN GET A SLIP? If you can justify the $2.000 a year cost, get it if you can. Don't let the Harbormaster talk you into a "transient" slip where you tie up to God Knows Where!!

If you don't get a slip and can find a place to park it in Seward, that would be my second choice. The third choice, is to haul the boat from Anch and fight the 3 hours of traffic going and coming. Not a good idea....and you'd have to have more truck to make that a safe option.

Just my two cents worth. PM us if you'd like to exchange personal information. We're hoping to spend lots of time in Prince William Sound and will launch in Seward, probably. I think Whittier is a little "rich" for our blood.

Don and Margaret
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby allanrs74@gmail.com on Thu May 17, 2018 3:39 pm

Tim and Laurie,
I too have just purchased an R-27 which is currently sitting on a trailer in Anacortes, WA. I am planning to transit up the inside passage and across the Gulf of Alaska to Seward, starting about 1 June. I lived in Anchorage for 16 years and have been a 'Snow Bird' since leaving. My summer base is off Kalifonsky Beach Rd in Soldotna and like you I've plied the waters of the Kenai, Kachemak Bay and Prince William Sound. I can't answer your questions about towing as I've not moved my boat yet. But I am planning to keep it in the water in Seward in a 'transient slip' this year but I've put my name in for an assigned slip. It takes @ a year to get a slip assignment. If you keep it in the water over the summer you definitely should have anti-fouling paint.Having trailered other boats from ANC to Seward and Homer, I'm not terribly excited about moving the R-27 on those roads. It obviously can be done with the right equipment.
So, with a fair wind and following sea, I hope the Annie M (blue hull) and I will come steaming into Seward towards the end of June.
Bob Allan
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby Margaret Lower on Thu May 17, 2018 5:05 pm

are you the one wanting someone to transport a trailer to AK?
Looks like we've got a "convooy" of tugs for Alaska.

Keep in touch. Wish we could join you'all for the trip up the inside passage.

don and Margaret
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby Levitation on Thu May 17, 2018 7:26 pm

You have received good advice from real users so I will confine my comments to a few points without going into lengthy explanations of why and how..
You have to ignore Ranger's listed weights - they are way off. My R25 listed in the mid 5000 pounds, actually weighs 8400 on the slings with nothing but a half tank of diesel and and a few life jackets. Loaded onto the trailer and ready to travel the all up weight is in the mid 11,000 range. The R27 will be a bit heavier when loaded for a family of 5..
For ramp work with this kind of weight you need a 4 wheel drive in a 3/4 ton rated truck. You do not want a dually. They have less tire grip on a ramp than singles. A one ton will do it of course, but is a bit of overkill.
Your Tundra will do the job (almost) if all you are doing is hauling a couple of miles to a ramp and back home. You will be illegal if stopped by police or weigh master. And you might not make it back up a steep ramp.
As far as the boat - enjoy :mrgreen:
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Re: Trailering questions

Postby SKI3PO on Sat May 19, 2018 1:35 pm

Thanks for all the information. Between everyone's replies and reading all of the other threads on the topic it's a little overwhelming and no clear consensus. Here's my observations:

1. A lot of people and truck salesman focus on the max towing capacity of the vehicle using a weight distribution hitch. As an example the "weight distributing" towing capacity of a 1/2 ton truck like an f150 or Tundra is in a range from 10,000-13,000lbs. depending on the set up. While the "Weight Carrying" capacity is only about 5,000. This is an important distinction as boat trailers are typically weight carrying. Most of these trucks have enough power to handle the load, but their suspensions and hitch assembly are not enough to deal with loads. Also, the weight of the truck makes stopping an issue as well.

2. Based on discussions I had with EZ Loader factory, it is a really a bad day to modify a boat trailer to accommodate a weight distribution hitch even if the trailer has electric brakes instead of surge break. People do it, but it opens up all kind of problems.

3. One solution was to have the local boat yard take the boat in and out of the water. Stormchasers in Seward will do this for $40-$60 depending on how long it takes them. You can call them the day before and they will have your boat launched and parked in a transient slip when you get there. The will also store your boat in their yard for $35/month. They have a pad for washing it down or you can pay them to do it. This was my preferred option to buy some time to get familiar with our boat to determine how much trailering we were going to do and whether we wanted to get a slip and paint the bottom.

4. 4X4 rentals of Alaska rents 1 ton pickups for $150/day with a 10% discount for Alaska residents. Seemed like a good option if you were only going to move the boat occasionally and let the boat yard take it in and out of the water.

Having said all that, there is a brand new Ford F250 6.7L diesel now sitting in our driveway ready for boat duty. After all the research I did I concluded there is no substitute for having the right tool for the right job. I will often be towing with my family in the rig and added peace of mind was worth the added expense.

In turns out that buying the boat was the easy part! We kind of backed our way in to this boat purchase and I am learning their are so many things for me to learn. But what a fun adventure for our family. I'm grateful to the Ranger Tug community for all the info during our first step toward boat ownership. I'm off to Seward this afternoon for our sea trial and if all goes well we will be cruising Resurrection Bay next weekend.

Thanks everyone!
Tim Alderson
"Clementine"
2014 R27 Classic
Anchorage, AK
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