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Old     (wakeboardin2k4)      Join Date: Sep 2006       11-04-2007, 7:46 PM Reply   
I know many of you guys have driven great distances to buy a boat. I am moving to Florida from Boston and am trailering my Nautique. I just put new goodyear marathons on it in the spring and have only put on maybe a couple hundred miles. Other than keeping the baring buddies full what do I need to make this 1200 mile trip a safe one?
Old     (lakeski)      Join Date: Dec 2006       11-04-2007, 7:54 PM Reply   
Make sure your tire stems are in good condition. They probably replaced them when you got new tires, but you should double check 'em. Boat trailer tire stems are notorious for dry rot. When they give way, you'll have a blow out.

When was the last time you had your bearings repacked?
Old     (rallyart)      Join Date: Nov 2006       11-04-2007, 8:05 PM Reply   
Vehicle engine and tranny oil in good shape. Good tunes. Get enough rest. Take the time to stretch out kinks in you during the drive.
When ever you stop look at the hitch, tires and bearings.
Old     (bondo)      Join Date: Oct 2007       11-04-2007, 8:32 PM Reply   
Um, spare tire on trailer? Transom straps? Also, at our body shop we use a blue protective film to keep sctarches off of the fenders and doors on luxury cars. just a semi thin blue self adhering protective film on the front of boat to help shield rock/roadgrime/ mud or tar.. good luck on your trip! And be safe. steve
Old     (wakeboardin2k4)      Join Date: Sep 2006       11-05-2007, 5:14 AM Reply   
I repacked the bearings in the middle of the summer. I will do that again before I go. I plan on having 2 spare tires, I have the old tires that were a little worn our that have been mounted on new rims.

I have heard it is a good idea to bring an extra bearing?
Old     (mobv)      Join Date: Jun 2002       11-05-2007, 7:09 AM Reply   
I've towed 600 miles each way several times. I always inspect brakes, bearing grease, lights, tires, etc. before I leave and walk around at each stop. I carry an extra set of bearings and seals but have never had to change. I have 1 spare tire. I was nervous the first couple trips but now it doesn't seem like a big deal. Fortunately I've never had any kind of problem.
Old     (toneus)      Join Date: Feb 2007       11-06-2007, 2:38 PM Reply   
I like the soap the bow idea. I towed my 23' from CA to GA without issue. I made sure that my trailer was ready for the trip. There is a good checklist in this thread to work from.
Old     (mastercraft1995)      Join Date: Nov 2002       11-06-2007, 3:48 PM Reply   
dual axle or single axle trailer. Yes take an extra bearing buddy and grease.
Old     (wakeboardin2k4)      Join Date: Sep 2006       11-06-2007, 4:14 PM Reply   
its a single axle which makes me nervous.
Old     (garman)      Join Date: Feb 2005       11-06-2007, 6:25 PM Reply   
You'll be fine. Check you bearings before the trip... jack up the trailer and spin the wheels... listen for anything less than smooth. If you have a rumble, change the bearings. If smooth, just grease them well before leaving. Have a spare tire (and the right size wrench). An extra pre-greased hub would be extra insurance but not necessary. You could even carry the grease gun and add some half way through the trip. Most importantly, keep a continual eye on your tires through your side mirrors looking for any deflation or bumps in the tires. Check your hubs for excess temp at every stop. With that... you'll be fine.
Old     (phunnel)      Join Date: Aug 2007       11-06-2007, 9:55 PM Reply   
great thread, i'm pulling a boat from cali to alberta in a couple weeks
Old     (rallyart)      Join Date: Nov 2006       11-06-2007, 10:06 PM Reply   
I've hauled cars on trailers for thousands of miles and never had a flat or a bearing go. (I've seen lots of tent trailers missing wheels though.)
Just keep them maintained and check them. You usually get lots of warning from heat and noise or vibration before anything fails.

By the way Jason it's about 24 hours from LA or SF to Calgary so you can be a day trip if you plan the pee breaks just right.
Old     (wakeboardin2k4)      Join Date: Sep 2006       11-10-2007, 3:38 PM Reply   
What do you guys do in terms of parking at night on multi day drives. Just throw the cover on and hope for the best? Just slightly worried about people poking their noses in my boat and possibly seeing something they want, and just taking it
Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       11-10-2007, 5:20 PM Reply   
I used to tow frequently on long multi-day trips.

I would always tow with cover on, try to park in a well lit spot, visible from room I was staying in, park so nobody can block you in, lock the hitch.

And if your like me, you won't get much sleep peeking out the window fifteen times a night...
Old     (wakeboardin2k4)      Join Date: Sep 2006       11-11-2007, 7:29 AM Reply   
Chris- I will end up being the same way. I have a lock for both the receiver and the trailer hitch itself so the boats not going anywhere its more the stereo im worried about.
Old     (hal2814)      Join Date: Feb 2006       11-12-2007, 12:27 PM Reply   
I'd carry spare bearings. It won't hurt. I know it's overkill but on a long trip on a single axle, I'd also carry a spare leaf or two. It might be hard to find replacements on the road if a leaf goes out on you.
Old     (wakeboardin2k4)      Join Date: Sep 2006       11-12-2007, 12:38 PM Reply   
ya I am going to get a pair of spare barings since I have no idea when they were last changed so I am going to get those. I don't think im going to have spare leafs. I agree that they are a good thing to have but im pretty sure my leafs are good
Old     (04outback)      Join Date: Jul 2007       11-12-2007, 1:13 PM Reply   
steve (bondo)...Great idea on the protective film!
Old     (xcharrier)      Join Date: Jul 2002       11-12-2007, 1:39 PM Reply   
I towed about 900 miles last spring and I had two problems. The first problem was that my boat was slightly uncentered on the trailer so my tires wore down on one side really bad so I'd suggest having the boat completely centered and tire pressure correct. I also had a busted window by the time I got to where I was going (I'm assuming from a rock). I'd maybe suggest a pad of some sort saran wrapped to the window to be safe. Other than that my single axle trailer had no problems.

edit: Just looked at your profile and I have the exact same kind of boat. It was $350 for a new windshield.

(Message edited by xcharrier on November 12, 2007)
Old     (04outback)      Join Date: Jul 2007       11-12-2007, 2:17 PM Reply   
Did you go through your dealer for the windshield or glass company? Did you install or have someone install? Seems easy just concerned about breakage..I had the same issue a few weeks ago towing through town.. been sick ever since.. never vacuumed up so much glass! can;t wait til next year when everyone gets glass in their feet.HA. I am sure I'll have to vacuum a time or two more.
Old     (paulw)      Join Date: Dec 2006       11-12-2007, 2:32 PM Reply   
I tow ever year from Chicago to the FL Keys 1500+ miles each way. Everyone is right on above; check the heat of the rims or bearings when you stop, you can feel if there is a problem. The only problem that I had is that the lugs loosen up on the aluminum rims, and had to get a new hub and rim, which was a pain in the a**. You have to check the torque at each stop. In the MasterCraft manual they make it mandatory. Make sure you take some tools and have a way to jack up the boat to change the tire.
I tow with a DP 40' motorhome so I don't even know the boat is back there until I have to turn, 70' overall length is a bit*ch some time.
Old     (kneeboarder8806)      Join Date: Jan 2006       11-12-2007, 2:34 PM Reply   
we have towed our boats to and from minnesota from houston and have never had any problems so far. also we have done the trip with both single and dual axle trailers. Also a good idea is to shrink wrap the tower so bugs dont build up.
Old     (05mobiuslsv)      Join Date: Apr 2006       11-12-2007, 2:56 PM Reply   
If you can't shrink wrap apply a heavy coat of wax and don't take it off until you get to your destination. Has worked for me on the long trips.
Old     (xcharrier)      Join Date: Jul 2002       11-12-2007, 3:27 PM Reply   
B Webb,
I called midwest correct craft for my windshield and installed it myself... I was a little nervous to say the least but me and a friend were able to bend it and slide it in the window frame. The glass actually bends really far. Only part that really concerned me was while sliding it in the frame it was rubbing on the tower. Got it in though and it was good all season.

And I know what you mean... spent a few hours vacuuming the glass in May and I was still finding pieces of glass at the end of September.
Old     (bzmillerboy)      Join Date: Jun 2006       11-13-2007, 12:32 PM Reply   
I am doing something similar for a boat I just bought in Raleigh, NC and I live in Cincinnati, OH. I got a buddy pass and flying to Raleigh for $27. U-Haul is renting me their 10ft box truck for $189. It is a 600 mile trip so I figured about 9mpg.

600/9 = 66.66 X $3.00 per gallon = $200 in gas.

$416 total is not bad!
Old     (wakeboardin2k4)      Join Date: Sep 2006       11-13-2007, 1:57 PM Reply   
BZ- what kind of boat did you get?

Ya that's not bad in terms of money. it should be about that in gas for me. I got a diesel im my 88 suburban and I get about 14mpg towing with a 30 gallon tank so about 400 miles to a tank on a 1200 mile trip so 3 tanks at 100 bucks a tank so call it 300 bucks in gas plus tolls and a hotel so not to to bad
Old     (doug2)      Join Date: Jan 2004       11-13-2007, 2:16 PM Reply   

Not sure what kind of spare bearing kit you have or are looking at but I always keep one of these in the truck after a bearing failure on my old single axle. d_1_1/16_Hub_Kit_1350_lbs&r=view&i=27591&aID=

Everyone has great suggestions, but I did just think of one more, towing mirrors. My old truck didn't have them and nothing aggravated me more on long trips to have some idiot tailgating me and I wasn't able to see them.

One more, check your route on each state's road construction website. Nothing like watching freshly chip sealed road get kicked up on the hull and interior.

Have a safe run!


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