Archived Trailer Guys Questions
The Trailer Boat Experts
What do you think about backing the boat and trailer down the ramp at a slow speed and then jamming on the brakes and letting the boat slide off? I've done it and people have come up to me and said it's not a good thing to do. I've never had a problem. J. Krulwich, Fairfield, CT
Answered on: 6/2005
GEORGE: I presume you have a roller trailer. I'll give you two words: It's dangerous. And if you have a guy on the back of the trailer who is supposed to unhook the bow eye from the winch, then it's all the more dangerous. MIKE: I have used this technique, but I never thought of it as sounding as severe as it does the way you have written it. It sounds dangerous! I would rephrase this and say, "As I back down the ramp and the water is lapping at the transom of my boat, I tap on the brakes repeatedly to encourage my boat to slip into the water". Now doesn't that sound better? Of course there are things to watch out for. If there are people, or boats, in the immediate area I would not use this technique, and even if you do don't "slam" on the brakes. If it takes that much force to get your boat to slide off your trailer you should look at a tilt trailer, using rollers or going to a steeper ramp.
the Trailer Boat Expert: Mike and George