Guests - If You want access to member only forums on HSO. You will gain access only when you sign-in or Sign-Up on HotSpotOutdoors.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
WyoChris

Roller vs Carpet trailers

25 posts in this topic

Just curious.... what the advantages/disadvantages of having a roller trailer vs the carpet slide trailers?

I have a roller trailer for my Lund Mr Pike, but it seems im in the minority with a roller trailer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's much easier to put a boat on straight on the bunk trailers. On shallow landings though you need to back a bunk up far enough to float the boat before it'll move, which can be difficult to impossible in some cases.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The is weight more evenly spead out with a bunk style. The wood can go bad with a bunk also.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can drive onto bunks and not roll back off as you would with rollers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

once you own a bunk trailer, you will never go back to a roller. The loading is so awesome, and it goes on straight everytime. You can do it all by yourself, and dont have to worry about someone being there to help you load it. Rollers are nice if your going to smaller lakes and the water is down, cuase you can roll it off the trailer.

I believe bunks are alot better all around. Just my .02.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I used to have a bunk trailer 2 boats ago. The last two boats I have owned, including the current one use roller trailers. Personally, I prefer the rollers. Maybe it is because I typically fish and launch my boat by myself. I think it is easier to both launch and pull out the boat with a roller trailer when you are by yourself. With the tilting pivotal quad-roller sets, I never have a problem getting my boat on perfectly straight. The pivot-action of the roller sets guides the boat on straight and level every time...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

steffanf, What is your routine for loading/unloading boat by yourself? thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've had 3 roller trailers over 30 years and 2 years ago got my first bunk trailer. I'll never go back to rollers. I find loading the boat by myself is much easier with bunks. Like Nick and Bass N Spear said it goes on straight every time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have used both kinds of trailers I love my roller trailer just back in so the first two sets of rollers are in the water and power my boat right on the trailer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like my bunks...FYI below is my routine for loading by myself. Notice that I don't drive the boat onto the trailer because a) my boat is horrible in reverse so it is a pain to back up then drive on the trailer B) "power loading" can be detrimental to the condition of the boat landing site.

1. Dock boat at landing dock or shore, turn off, attach rope to front

2. Go get vehicle and put trailer in the water just right

3. Load the boat by pulling it onto the bunk trailer with the rope attached to the front, use wench to get the boat all the way up if needed

4. Pull away

Anyone else care to share their routine for loading by theirselves?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a 16' aluminum lund that I loaded onto a roller trailer for years...not overly difficult, but not a slam dunk to get it on straight either, especially with some wind/current. Now i have a 20' glass boat on a bunk trailer. SO much easier to load/unload by myself, no comparison really. Here's something I don't get though...i hear all kinds of talk about "power loading" digging holes at landings, even being forbidden somepalces because of the damage. I'd never power loaded before, but the guy i bought my boat from showed me how (once) and I can't believe how easy it is. I simply drive it on...no excess power needed, in fact, I'm letting off the throttle as I get it on. I guess I don't get why anyone is running the motor hard enough at a landing to do damage. So why is mine easy to load with no amount of engine reving?? I was shown to back the trailer down to a precise deptth (marks on my guide-ons) and when I drive it up it stops a couple inches shy of the winch, no problem. I'm guessing it must not be that easy for all bigger boats??

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the reason for full throtlle is so they can "look cool" even tho at a trolling pace they will go on the trailers no problem at all...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When I'm landing alone I prefer my bunks. Drive it on, tilt motor up, winch it tight, done. Shallow landings are the only drawback I've encountered.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Having only owned a roller trailer....I find it to be pretty challenging at times to drive my boat on the trailer with some current or nasty wind. I've always been able to give her a push out and let the current carry her down stream and then guide it on at the right moment. I picked up some guide-on's this year and they help out quite a bit with loading and unloading on your own. Some people power load improperly by backing the trailer in too shallow then they have to really give it some juice to get it on the trailer.....others are just lazy. Proper power loading can be very effective and do little to no damage at the landing if done properly. Trial and error.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

By my self:

old boat, roller converted bunks (with I would have left it bunks, but for some reason I believed rollers were better. The roller conversions are a waste of time and money.)

Unloading:

remove transom strap (leaving the bow attached)

back in far enough that its in, but I can still get to the winch.

If it is in enough water to semi float, I have a rope about 10' long, grab that attached to the boat so it don't go floating away on me. Unhook the bow push it off and tie it to the other side of the dock...

Pretty simple.

Loading, well lets just say, people at the ramp hate me, cause I am an awful slow loader. Its gotten better since I installed side roller guides. But because of the trailers converted bunks the boat sits waay high. So I have to back in stupid far, and then things in place. If Im wearing shorts and dont care about getting wet, I can load really fast, but if I'm trying to stay dry it is quite miserable.

The new boat should be alot easier, the trailer design is like 25 years newer and matches the boat, vs the old converted flat trailer smile

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On some launches that are very steep guys power load cause they are way to deep if they go back to far and cant get the nose of the boat over the front roller.Others,because of power loading have blown sand and rocks into a pile so when you approach the launch you run into a large heave and have to trim way up to avoid hitting bottom.Not all launches are the same,rollers are great for shallow water launching.Bunks seem to be best for centering the boat.There are bunks that have rollers built into them that can be raised,thats the best of both worlds.Bunk trailers also come with a system for collapsing the bunks for shallow water launching.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

steffanf, What is your routine for loading/unloading boat by yourself? thanks

I'm making this as detailed as possible to explain myself thoroughly. I't looks like a long process, but is actually fairly quick. The boat is an '07 Lund 1425 Classic w/40HP. The trailer is an '08 Shorland'r with 4 quad-bank rollers for a total of 16 large rubber rollers.

Unloading:

1.) Back the boat in until the rear 1/3 of the boat is touching water

2.) Hook dock rope to bow eye (has a simple snap-hook)

3.) Remove winch strap from bow eye

4.) Simple push it with one hand and it rolls completely off the trailer (make sure you are holding onto that rope!)

5.) walk the boat out to the end of the dock and tie off (usually it just drifts to the end of the dock by itself)

Loading:

1.) Pull up to dock and tie off

2.) Back trailer in so the very end rollers are under water and the top of the next set is just barely out of the water.

3.) Unhook boat and push away from dock, making sure to hold on to the rope.

4.) Pull boat onto trailer as far as you can (I can usually get within a couple feet of the winch, depending on how steep the launch is)

5.) Wrap rope around winch roller a few times (to keep boat from rolling back off trailer)

6.) Hook up winch strap to bow eye

7.) Make sure winch "clicker" is on and remove dock rope

8.) Crank boat up onto the trailer the rest of the way and pull out

Now, I do have a walk plate ahead of the winch, which makes it easy to keep your balance when hooking/unhooking the boat and cranking up the boat. Also, my boat is only about 15' long, which because of the weight, makes things a bit easier. Also, I will "powerload" my boat if needed. If I am loading onto my trailer and I am not right next to a dock, I simply get back in my boat, untie it from the dock and pull onto the trailer at the lowest throttle setting. Leaving the engine in gear (possibly giving it a little more gas to hold still), I then go to the bow, reach out and grab the winch strap and hook it up to the bow eye and set the "clicker". Then I turn the engine off, crawl out the boat over the bow and crank it the rest of the way up. My tailer also sits relatively low to the ground as it rides on lower-profile 13" tires. To sum it all up, I think it all depends on your boat/trailer set-up as to what is better for you. I know that if I had some giant glass 18-20' rig, I would never want to have a roller trailer-- no way I could pull that thing up even a couple feet! I am certain I would almost submerse the entire boat trailer when launching and "powerload" when loading if I had a large/heavy boat. Personally, for a relatively small aluminum boat (up to 16-17'), I think a good roller trailer is the way to go.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like the bunks are a little better unless your on a bad boat launch..... or you prefer the "rope" method of launching your boat. I kinda wish I had bunks, however, the rollers did come in handy one day when my main engine went down and I had to use a rope and pull my boat onto the trailer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I disagree that you can't get a boat loaded straight every time on a roller. I believe if you are having trouble in this regard there are three possible causes.

1.

You are putting your trailer too deep in the water.

2.

Your rollers are not properly adjusted for the boat.

3.

When you are winching you are trying to load too fast at the start and don't allow the rollers to do their job.

I would bet almost anything that if I get the bow of my boat between the rollers on the back of the trailer, it will load dead on center every time. Yesterday when the nose of my boat entered the rollers, the boat was sitting at about a 45 degree angle to the trailer. As soon as I started applying pressure with the winch, the boat pulled straight and rolled right up onto my trailer without a problem and it was centered. If you put a roller trailer too deep, the rollers can't do their job.

I agree that bunks provide better support for the boat generally speaking.

I can also bet that you will not be able to launch or load your boat off of bunks if the landing isn't deep enough. Try to push your boat off the trailer with it sitting on your driveway and that's what you've got if you can't submerge the bunks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Originally Posted By: stiffrod
steffanf, What is your routine for loading/unloading boat by yourself? thanks

I'm making this as detailed as possible to explain myself thoroughly. I't looks like a long process, but is actually fairly quick. The boat is an '07 Lund 1425 Classic w/40HP. The trailer is an '08 Shorland'r with 4 quad-bank rollers for a total of 16 large rubber rollers.

Unloading:

1.) Back the boat in until the rear 1/3 of the boat is touching water

2.) Hook dock rope to bow eye (has a simple snap-hook)

3.) Remove winch strap from bow eye

4.) Simple push it with one hand and it rolls completely off the trailer (make sure you are holding onto that rope!)

5.) walk the boat out to the end of the dock and tie off (usually it just drifts to the end of the dock by itself)

Loading:

1.) Pull up to dock and tie off

2.) Back trailer in so the very end rollers are under water and the top of the next set is just barely out of the water.

3.) Unhook boat and push away from dock, making sure to hold on to the rope.

4.) Pull boat onto trailer as far as you can (I can usually get within a couple feet of the winch, depending on how steep the launch is)

5.) Wrap rope around winch roller a few times (to keep boat from rolling back off trailer)

6.) Hook up winch strap to bow eye

7.) Make sure winch "clicker" is on and remove dock rope

8.) Crank boat up onto the trailer the rest of the way and pull out

Now, I do have a walk plate ahead of the winch, which makes it easy to keep your balance when hooking/unhooking the boat and cranking up the boat. Also, my boat is only about 15' long, which because of the weight, makes things a bit easier. Also, I will "powerload" my boat if needed. If I am loading onto my trailer and I am not right next to a dock, I simply get back in my boat, untie it from the dock and pull onto the trailer at the lowest throttle setting. Leaving the engine in gear (possibly giving it a little more gas to hold still), I then go to the bow, reach out and grab the winch strap and hook it up to the bow eye and set the "clicker". Then I turn the engine off, crawl out the boat over the bow and crank it the rest of the way up. My tailer also sits relatively low to the ground as it rides on lower-profile 13" tires. To sum it all up, I think it all depends on your boat/trailer set-up as to what is better for you. I know that if I had some giant glass 18-20' rig, I would never want to have a roller trailer-- no way I could pull that thing up even a couple feet! I am certain I would almost submerse the entire boat trailer when launching and "powerload" when loading if I had a large/heavy boat. Personally, for a relatively small aluminum boat (up to 16-17'), I think a good roller trailer is the way to go.

Like steffanf says, it's a much shorter process than can be explained. I can usually load my boat in less than 60 seconds without drving it on the trailer. I don't power load. It's too hard on the landing and too risky for my lower unit for my blood.

Unloading takes even less time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Personally, every time I see someone struggling with a roller trailer, I wish I could find a way to offer a quick training course without embarrassing them or making them feel inferior. It's so simple it's pathetic but it takes a little practice and people are too hard to approach when they are struggling. Once you learn how, you'll wonder why you had trouble at all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have two trailers, both have rollers, one for a 16 footer the other is 21ft. Usally not a problem to get them loaded, just take my time and go slow.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like my bunks...FYI below is my routine for loading by myself. Notice that I don't drive the boat onto the trailer because a) my boat is horrible in reverse so it is a pain to back up then drive on the trailer B) "power loading" can be detrimental to the condition of the boat landing site.

1. Dock boat at landing dock or shore, turn off, attach rope to front

2. Go get vehicle and put trailer in the water just right

3. Load the boat by pulling it onto the bunk trailer with the rope attached to the front, use wench to get the boat all the way up if needed

4. Pull away

Anyone else care to share their routine for loading by theirselves?

That pretty well describes my routine also, except I also carry my hip boots with and put them on for unloading/loading - no trying to 'walk the trailer hitch and wreck myself' when I fall off for me. I also have roller bunks, I feel it makes it easier to crank it up on a steep landing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rollers for me. I personally like them a lot. Key as Bob mentioned is to not get them too deep. I actually leave the last roller half in the water and half out. This makes the biggest difference in getting the boat to load evenly.

I suppose with the bunk trailers you could power your boat onto the trailer, but honestly the winch with proper rollers is very simple to do. Takes just a minute or two extra and I don't have to worry about prop dings.

My old boat took a little bit of effort to winch up. My new Shorelander trailer and Lund boat is almost effortless.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have rollers on my 17ft alumacraft loads very esially by myself.

1. back trailor in to second set of rollers

2. Drive on to trailor just at idol speed using very little power once 1/2 to 3/4 on I cut power letting the boat roll back this lets the rollers do their job and center the boat.

3. Power back up again just at idol speed. when I get 1/2 or 3/4 up I leave the boat in forward gear and lean over bow, or hop out and hook up to winch give it a few cranks.

4. Go back to the wheel if i am not perfectly center wind or current I can tell by side rollers, I crank the wheel whatever direction needed and with very little power I can slide the back end over to perfect.

5. Cut the motor, climb out crank it up tight

All in all this takes less than 2 min...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0