Magredrod

Best triple axle trailer manufacturer???

25 posts in this topic

We pull our '08 264 Sunesta several thousand miles each summer for lake trips and want to upgrade to a nicer trailer and spread the weight over 6 tires vs. 4. Looking to see what's the best brand in your opinion. Thanks for your input. Current trailer is a Tennessee Trailer.

Rod

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We have a zieman trailer on our boat. Have never had a problem, Knock on wood, since we got our boat. One thing I would suggest is that you switch over to LED lights on the trailer if it doesn't have them. What a difference.

Saul ;)

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Reguardless of who made it I would concider the following...

Trailer Spec

I really like the Tie-Down brand of trailer hardware. The surge brakes are 4 wheel disc and have a by-pass solenoid that ties the actuator into your vehicle's back up lamp circuit. The switch is engaged whenever the tow rig is placed in reverse, releasing the brake function. Surge brake engagement in reverse is only a problem when backing up a hill. Older surge units had a manual pin that the operator would insert before attempting to back up an incline.

I also like Tie-Down's oil filled bearing hubs, LED light kit, and torsional element axles. I attached some links for you to look over.

Torsion axles are cool as they give you independent 4 wheel suspension. The down side is that they do not have the load equalization trunnion (the little teeter-totter) in between the spring elements to equally distribute weight to both the front and rear axles during operation. Because the axles are individual fixed elements, it is imperative that the ball hitch height be adjusted so the trailer frame is perfectly level in the area between the front and rear axles during fully loaded operation. If the ball is too high, then the front axle becomes unloaded diverting its share of the load to both the rear axle and to a lesser extent the tow vehicle. Same result holds true if the ball is too low. This situation unloads the rear axle and punishes the front. If you take a good bump at speed in this situation, then it would be pretty easy to tweak an axle. I also have the new oil filled bearings on mine and they seem to work well at maintaining proper preload. I also added a weight distribution hitch and load leveler bars to my trailer to not only take some dead weight off the tow vehicle, but also to help dampen the "free fall" when a nasty bump is encountered. Below are two links that may help you decide.

http://www.tiedown.com/boemm.html

http://www.tiedown.com/aturbo.html

Trailer Tie-Downs

Always use tie-downs. The small amount of downward force required to properly stabilize the load will not impart damage to the hull. If it does then your trailer has far too few rollers or the bunk surface area is way too small. My 256 SSX trailer has 64 rollers and even with the weight of a Bravo III drive, a 496 HO engine and fully fueled, I can still rotate each roller by hand after the boat is loaded.

One tie down that is typically overlooked is the forward mounted pull-back strap. This addition is vital in case of a winch and/or winch standard failure while traveling. The rear twin straps should be pulling down and forward and the forward strap pulls down and back. I actually back off on the power winch tension while towing to take impact strain off of the power winch gear reducer. I also utilize a forward mounted safety chain.

Chaparral does not rig trailers. That is your dealer's responsibility and my ride was delivered with straps that actually had the dealers name embroidered on them with high gloss stitching as did the dock lines. Cecil Marine is a class act and if you are close to south Jersey, give Paul Celano a call. They use a trailer built right up the road from them..

Wingnut

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I have a triple axle Trailmaster trailer for my 265 SSi. I've called Trailmaster before for some questions and they have put me in direct contact with their trailer designer so I will give them good rating for customer support. My trailer is a C channel design, however not being in Salt water I wish i would have gotten the Tube trailer, I think they look better plus better torsional rigidity.

However the best piece of mind with a triple axle is the ability to have more trailer breaking power as my trailer has 12" vented disc break per wheel.

P9240093-1.jpg

I am partial to Kodiak brakes and many trailer manufacturers are using them. Like I said they are 12" VENTED discs. What I like more than the vented aspect of them is that they use "off the shelf" brake pads that you can buy at any autostore. What I mean is that when I went to replace mine I just shot over to Autozone and bought disc brake pads for an 89 buick skylark (they list what vehicle brakes to specifiy on their site) and they fit right in. Kodiak gives you two options, disc brake with integrated hub (bearing races built in) or just the rotor only that fits over the idler hub. I have the rotor only which is great for servicing. Also, take a look at the Kodiak site as they have different types of corrosion resistance all the way up to a full Stainless Steel system (with SS caliper pistons!!!).

http://www.kodiaktrailer.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=13&Itemid=30

My trailer came with a Titan coupler which I have been happy with. If you take a look at the different coupler manufactuerers, ususally they will have a parts diagram so you can take a look at all the servicable parts. I am in the process right now of replacing the dampner/shocks on my coupler (avg life from the manuf. is 5 yrs) since I'm going on 7 years without doing any maintenance. The servicablitiy is great on this coupler and changing the two shocks is a piece of cake and gives me a chance to see all the other components in the coupler for piece of mind.

As you take a look at different trailer manufacturers, they pretty much all buy off the shelf components so a lot of the choice is what components you want on the trailer.

Good luck with the purchase!!!

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My luck with RoadRunner has not been so good and I feel compelled to share what I've put up with for everyone's benefit. I pull my boat about 1500 miles per year. I've had three different RR trailers. Two of the trailers were new and one slightly used, which was reconditioned by RoadRunner for me. Over the past 10 years this is the joy RR brought to my life:

* A leaf spring broke in half

* Both spindles on rear axle sheared off - learned after the fact the axles were 2000lbs even though the boat was ~5000lbs

* Replaced three or four master cylinders

* Have rebuilt disk brakes about every three years

* Disk brake assemblies were missing bolts on one new trailer, which caused them to twist and snap the hydraulic fluid tubing at the first stop.

If you do purchase a RR trailer I recommend you carry the following items in your truck: 4x4 block of wood, several 2' lengths of chain, some bailing wire and a floor jack.

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My luck with RoadRunner has not been so good and I feel compelled to share what I've put up with for everyone's benefit. I pull my boat about 1500 miles per year. I've had three different RR trailers. Two of the trailers were new and one slightly used, which was reconditioned by RoadRunner for me. Over the past 10 years this is the joy RR brought to my life:

* A leaf spring broke in half

* Both spindles on rear axle sheared off - learned after the fact the axles were 2000lbs even though the boat was ~5000lbs

* Replaced three or four master cylinders

* Have rebuilt disk brakes about every three years

* Disk brake assemblies were missing bolts on one new trailer, which caused them to twist and snap the hydraulic fluid tubing at the first stop.

If you do purchase a RR trailer I recommend you carry the following items in your truck: 4x4 block of wood, several 2' lengths of chain, some bailing wire and a floor jack.

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Thanks to each of you that replied, especially Wingnut, AJP377 and 256ssi. I looked at each brand that was commented on in the feedback. I have contacted my dealer and plan to use your advice when spec'ing a new tri axle tralier.

Thanks again and I'll take any other suggestions others have to offer.

Rod

'08 Sunesta 264

8.lL Volvo

375 HP

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Load Rite I felt used to be great, but it seems its customer service and quality have gone sour, so they won't get my business or recommendations any more. here that if there is a load wrong rep on the forum, you know where you can stick your trailers.

these people are great , would recommend them to anybody.

http://www.heritagetrailers.com/

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We pull our '08 264 Sunesta several thousand miles each summer for lake trips and want to upgrade to a nicer trailer and spread the weight over 6 tires vs. 4. Looking to see what's the best brand in your opinion. Thanks for your input. Current trailer is a Tennessee Trailer.

Rod

Rod, trailer manufactures are kind of territorial. You can get anything anywhere for a price, I would look for a design that provides the hull support you require, some are 4 bunk, but 6 or more might work better. Additionally make sure the GVRW rating is at least 20% more than the loaded weight of your boat. Torsion axles are cool, but there are pros and cons to consider, when going with them....do some research on Torsion Axles. Here are some other features to consider, oil filled bearing hubs, LED light kit, a spare tire and mount, and breaks on all axle are a must.

Take care

Dave

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I really appreciate all of the suggestions and tips on spec'ing a new trailer. We've decided to go with the EZLoader Illusion Series with 20' tires and triple axle brakes, chrome steps, LED lighting, etc. This should ease worries about trailer stability on our 500-1,000 mile round trips we take. Hope I can get it in time for a trip to Lake Hartwell around Labor Day in 4 weeks. Thanks again to all the members that added their input.

Rod

'08 Sunesta 264

8.1L Volvo

375 HP

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Reguardless of who made it I would concider the following...

Trailer Spec

I really like the Tie-Down brand of trailer hardware. The surge brakes are 4 wheel disc and have a by-pass solenoid that ties the actuator into your vehicle's back up lamp circuit. The switch is engaged whenever the tow rig is placed in reverse, releasing the brake function. Surge brake engagement in reverse is only a problem when backing up a hill. Older surge units had a manual pin that the operator would insert before attempting to back up an incline.

I also like Tie-Down's oil filled bearing hubs, LED light kit, and torsional element axles. I attached some links for you to look over.

Torsion axles are cool as they give you independent 4 wheel suspension. The down side is that they do not have the load equalization trunnion (the little teeter-totter) in between the spring elements to equally distribute weight to both the front and rear axles during operation. Because the axles are individual fixed elements, it is imperative that the ball hitch height be adjusted so the trailer frame is perfectly level in the area between the front and rear axles during fully loaded operation. If the ball is too high, then the front axle becomes unloaded diverting its share of the load to both the rear axle and to a lesser extent the tow vehicle. Same result holds true if the ball is too low. This situation unloads the rear axle and punishes the front. If you take a good bump at speed in this situation, then it would be pretty easy to tweak an axle. I also have the new oil filled bearings on mine and they seem to work well at maintaining proper preload. I also added a weight distribution hitch and load leveler bars to my trailer to not only take some dead weight off the tow vehicle, but also to help dampen the "free fall" when a nasty bump is encountered. Below are two links that may help you decide.

http://www.tiedown.com/boemm.html

http://www.tiedown.com/aturbo.html

Trailer Tie-Downs

Always use tie-downs. The small amount of downward force required to properly stabilize the load will not impart damage to the hull. If it does then your trailer has far too few rollers or the bunk surface area is way too small. My 256 SSX trailer has 64 rollers and even with the weight of a Bravo III drive, a 496 HO engine and fully fueled, I can still rotate each roller by hand after the boat is loaded.

One tie down that is typically overlooked is the forward mounted pull-back strap. This addition is vital in case of a winch and/or winch standard failure while traveling. The rear twin straps should be pulling down and forward and the forward strap pulls down and back. I actually back off on the power winch tension while towing to take impact strain off of the power winch gear reducer. I also utilize a forward mounted safety chain.

Chaparral does not rig trailers. That is your dealer's responsibility and my ride was delivered with straps that actually had the dealers name embroidered on them with high gloss stitching as did the dock lines. Cecil Marine is a class act and if you are close to south Jersey, give Paul Celano a call. They use a trailer built right up the road from them..

Wingnut

P8080012.jpg

P8080007.jpg

P8080004.jpg

Nice Write-up Wingnut. As always, great insight.

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We have a zieman trailer on our boat. Have never had a problem, Knock on wood, since we got our boat. One thing I would suggest is that you switch over to LED lights on the trailer if it doesn't have them. What a difference.

Saul ;)

Saul,

I have the exact same set-up as you. 256 ssi and the Zieman trailer. Where did you get the LED light set-up? Also I tend to have some grease linkage from the rear Bearing buddy's above what occurs on the other two axles. I replaced the bearing buddy's on the rear axle not knowing if that was an issue since I bought the boat and trailer six months ago. Just wondering if this is common or I need to look further for the cause.

Thanks

Rich

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We have a zieman trailer on our boat. Have never had a problem, Knock on wood, since we got our boat.

Saul ;)

+1 on the Zieman

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I have a Road Runner triple axle with electric disc brakes on two axles. Good trailer. Bunk carpet has lasted one year and the front tires rub the fender arches in between the tires if you take corners to sharp.

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We've got a Road King triple axle with surge disc brakes on all three axles for our 290. It's got an aluminum frame and torsion suspension. Very solidly built trailer that tracks very straight. Only complaint is the surge brakes, but next spring, an electric over hydraulic system is going on it. It came with the boat when we picked it up from the Boat Rack in Lake Norman.

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My first new trailer was a painted Road Runner and was junk. My second+Third new trailers for my next boats were both EZ Loader and I was very happy with them. My new trailer for my new Chap is made by Eagle and I am happier with the trailer than I am with the boat. It is a custom made/fit to my hull and is very well made. The only thing I'd change is the surge brakes. Electric brakes is the way to go IMO as they were a pleasure to use on my last two trailers. Surge....not so much. LED lights rock! Disk brakes rock!! Painted looks great the first few years but goes to crap after a while and is big deer to paint properly again. Galvanized doesn't look so good but looks the same 20 years later.

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