Are you confused about buying either a bunk trailer or roller trailer?
In this article, we’ll take a close look at each trailer’s features, to help you decide which of them is better.
WHAT IS A BUNK TRAILER?
Most boaters choose bunk trailers because of their simple yet useful design. They have fewer moving parts that make them easier to maintain than roller trailers. When it comes to pricing, bunk trailers are cheaper and more affordable compared to roller trailers. That’s why they’re recommended for boaters who are on a tight budget.
Bunk trailers are also best when it comes to retrieving your boat. You just need to submerge the trailer and drive the boat right back onto it.
|✔ Simple design|
✔ Cheaper and affordable
✔ Easier to maintain
✔ Launching and retrieving your boat is easier when submerged.
⨯ It’s nearly impossible to launch and retrieve during low tide.
TRAILER KEEL PADS
Trailer keel pads are used for bunk trailers. These pads will help you protect your boat from any damages whenever you load and unload your boat onto a trailer. Most of them have scratch-resistant cushions that will protect your boat from scratches.
You can select from various types of keel pads depending on what suits you best:
- Polyvinyl Pads – these pads are useful for aluminum boat hulls and trailers. They’re shocked absorbent, UV resistant, durable, and naturally slippery so no need to use lubricants.
- Carpet Pads -are commonly designed for fiberglass boat hulls. Most boaters prefer these pads over polyvinyl pads since they are safer and prevent scratches when launching and retrieving boats from trailers.
WHAT IS A ROLLER TRAILER?
Roller trailers are known for their modern style and features. They’re more convenient to use compared to bunk trailers since you can easily launch your boat, even on shallow waters. Its rollers make towing easier and faster since you can pull your boat with the help of your trailer’s winch.
Since they have moving parts, daily maintenance is required such as; replacing the rollers when damaged, maintaining that they are properly oiled to avoid corrosion, etc. for them to function properly.
|✔ Modern style|
✔ Convenient to use
✔ Can launch and retrieve boats even on shallow waters
⨯ More expensive compared to bunk trailers
⨯ Daily maintenance is required
TRAILER KEEL ROLLERS
If you’ll be using roller trailers, you may choose between the classic plastic rollers or rib rollers. Need a boat trailer roller guide? Here’s what you need to know about trailer keel rollers:
- Plastic rollers – most plastic rollers are V-shaped and positioned at the center of the trailer, to support the keel of your boat. They are UV resistant, long-lasting, and suitable for aluminum boats.
- Rubber rollers – are budget-friendly rollers but should be properly taken care of, especially when used often. Rubber rollers are more likely to split and crack if not maintained accordingly.
- Rib roller – these rollers are smaller compared to keel rollers. They can support the outer areas of the boat’s hull since they have a ribbing texture that increases the boat’s traction.
TRAILER KEEL ROLLERS SIZES
- 4-inch Plastic Keel Rollers – for smaller sized boats (16 to less than 26 feet length overall).
- 5-inch Plastic Keel Rollers – recommended for small to medium-sized aluminum boats (30 to less than 39 feet length overall).
- 8-inch Plastic Keel Rollers – designed for small and medium-sized aluminum boats (30 to less than 39 feet length overall).
HOW SHOULD A BOAT SIT ON A ROLLER TRAILER?
Putting your boat on a trailer isn’t just a matter of a dump-and-go process. This is because you need to be sure that your boat is properly latched on the trailer where alignment is an important factor. If not, you can just imagine your boat protruding and the slightest bump can scratch or damage its parts.As a general rule, boats on roller trailers should have at least a 2” space between the keel and tongue plate cover. The end of the rollers must be flush with transom and the boweye must touch the winch post. The same thing applies to bunk trailers.
HOW MUCH OF THE BUNKS OR ROLLERS ARE SUBMERGED?
In terms of loading your boat back to the trailer, the latter should be positioned in such a way that about 2/3 of both bunks and rollers are in the water. This way, an adequate amount of water pressure is present to help you put your boat in place. Your towing vehicle should be in brake “park mode” to prevent it from sliding into the water.
Make sure that your boat and trailer still have enough space for you to attach the winch line to the boweye.
WHY DO BOAT TRAILERS HAVE CARPETS?
Those covered boards have a purpose that goes beyond the sake of accessories.
Honestly, these trailers both have great benefits that will help you launch/retrieve your boat easily. The difference lies in where and how you’ll use them.
Share us your thoughts about bunk trailers and roller trailers by commenting below.