Arwen's meanderings

Hi everyone and welcome to my dinghy cruising blog about my John Welsford designed 'navigator' named Arwen. Built over three years, Arwen was launched in August 2007. She is a standing lug yawl 14' 6" in length. This blog records our dinghy cruising voyages together around the coastal waters of SW England.
Arwen has an associated YouTube channel so visit to find our most recent cruises and click subscribe.
On this blog you will find posts about dinghy cruising locations, accounts of our voyages, maintenance tips and 'How to's' ranging from rigging standing lug sails and building galley boxes to using 'anchor buddies' and creating 'pilotage notes'. I hope you find something that inspires you to get out on the water in your boat. Drop us a comment and happy sailing.
Steve and Arwen

Sunday 8 December 2019

Boat trailers

Arwen's boat trailer is 10 years old and still going well. There have been several bearing changes and three sets of tyre and inner wheel changes as well over this time.

The trailer was designed for a rib and is extendable from 14 - 21'. I got it at a very knock down price, which was all I could afford at the time.

The problem with the trailer is its design. The hard rigid plastic rollers play havoc with the lapstrake design of Arwen's hull and so the paint regularly gets slightly damaged and flakes off leaving grey patches on the bottom planks and hull base.

Thank heavens, there were three top coats, three undercoats and three grey coats over the fibreglass!

Cut to the chase - I saw this picture of a trailer for a navigator, Now I am wondering whether I could remove the side rollers and replace them with bunk planks?


Bursledon Blogger said...

Steve, I have similar issues with Tosh which although smaller is chine and sits on a combi trailer the weight is taken on the keel (on flat rollers) and the rollers really only keep her upright, that said they don't work very well.

I think bunks work for powerboats due to the flat sections, Tosh and Arwen probably wouldn't be supported correctly due to curvature.

Our Stratos (now sold) had a wide GRP cradle about 10"front to back moulded to match the hull profile, I'm thinking I will make the same thing for Tosh but keep the weight resting on the keel rollers so the cradle only stops her from moving side to side.

Winter project if I ever get time or take retirement like you.


steve said...

Hi Max - good idea that. Arwen rests weight on keel rollers mainly along her skeg, centreboard strips etc. The rollers are doing serious damage - I see most navigator owners are switching to bunks of some form and then vertical uprights to help guide her on during retrieval. I think some early spring modifications are required!!

Anonymous said...

My Navigator sat on bunks .. about 6/7ft long, covered with a carpet type material so the boat would slide on easy. They were also flexible so they conformed to the hull shape when the weight went on. Shame I can't post a photo in these comments.

steve said...

hello Anonymous - I would love to see a picture - I think I need to sort the trailer this year as a definite project.
Are you on Facebook at all?

Anonymous said...

Although this is not my trailer it was pretty much just like this one. Worked well for me.

steve said...

thanks for that website - the image was really helpful and is exactly what I was trying to work out in my head - much appreciated - merry Christmas and a happy new year to you and thank you.

Anonymous said...

You could buy a kit if you don't fancy fabricating your own ..