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Author Topic:   Transom Saver
Jolly J posted 06-22-2001 10:25 PM ET (US)   Profile for Jolly J   Send Email to Jolly J  
Hi folks, I'm starting a new thread because I can't find anything on this topic elsewhere.
I'm looking for some advice on Transom Savers. I have been trailering an 88 Montauk and 70 hp Johnson with the motor straight down, but after reading the trailer column at this site, I decided to change to Stoltz rollers and re-adjust the Keel Rollers and bunks to lower the boat on the trailer. Now the skeg is too close to the pavement for comfort. I've tried trailering with the motor tilted up and resting on the support bars, but this seems like a lot of stress on the transom, and the motor flops around on bumps.Where do I go from here?
i.e. -What to look for.
-Do I even need one with a Whaler?
-How do you tell what length you need?
-Should the Motor be resting on the tilt supports or can it be lower?
-The rear keel roller is right under the transom so I don't think that a roller mount will work.
-If I do need a transom saver, which is the best brand?

Any input and advice would be greatly appreciated.

dscew posted 06-22-2001 10:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for dscew    
I'm probably going to complicate this thread, but I've been told that the best way to avoid the bumping and shocks to the transom and motor when trailering is to place a 2 X 10 piece of pine between the motor and transom when tilted up, then tilt the engine down until it just barely squeezes the wood. Supposedly this makes the motor and transom more like one unit, where a transom saver uses the trailer as a stressed component. Any opinions on this method? Makes sense to me.
Dick posted 06-22-2001 11:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for Dick  Send Email to Dick     
I trailer my Montauk with the engine raised and then set back down on the mechanical stop with the hydraulics. In my years of dealership experience and usage I have never used or recomemned motor to trailer supports.
I am sure that this will open a can of worms, but it is my opinion.
DaveS posted 06-23-2001 12:57 AM ET (US)     Profile for DaveS  Send Email to DaveS     
From what I've read on another board, they don't suggest you add the transom saver...if you want to check it out...go to: and so a search on transom savers...I'm sure you will get more infomation then you'll need.

Hope this helps...


Tom W Clark posted 06-23-2001 01:16 AM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     

Am I to understand that you do not have power trim and tilt on your Johnson 70? Because if you do, then there should be no bouncing around in the tilted position!

If you do have TNT then tilt the motor all the way up, flip the trailering bracket down and lower the motor. Continue to cycle the TNT all the way down just like Dick does. Be sure the hydraulic rams are fully retracted. This is important and not everybody understands this including the guy I bought my last Whaler from.

The day I picked that boat up I hitched the boat up to my truck, raised the motor, flipped the bracket down and lowered it. The guy just about had a cow! He warned my that I should lower just until the trailering bracket touched the mounting bracket and stop or else "I might blow out a gasket or something". This guy apparently never read his Johnson outboard owner's manual. The manual emphasizes the fact that you need to cycle the TNT until the trim rams are fully retracted so that the motor will be held in the down position and not bounce. If you do this the motor and boat will move and act like one object and you won't need a transom saver.

I also believe the tilted position is better regardless of road clearance because more clearance in general is better and also because the center of gravity of the motor is closer to the transom and thus less stressful to it.

If you have a manual tilt motor, and I believe they sold some in 1988, then you might be able to get away with simply moving the tilt pin to the stern most position and locking the motor in this, somewhat elevated, position for trailering.

Novice Dave posted 06-23-2001 02:50 AM ET (US)     Profile for Novice Dave    
When I trailered my new Whaler home for the first time I was disturbed by the flopping motion of the motor when I went over bumps.

The owner's manual that came with my Whaler says..."use an outboard support bar to secure engine. Do not rely on tilt support lever for trailering."

The Mercury owner's manual says..."the outboard should be tilted up using an accessory outboard support device."

A transom saver does not support the weight of the motor, it controls the rocking motion of the motor balanced on the transom. dscew's pine 2x10 will do the trick.
However, I installed Cabela's frame mount tansom saver BB-01-1012 ($40) and it stopped the flopping motion of my motor.

In my book both the Mercury and BW engineers are right about this one.

wpr posted 06-23-2001 01:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for wpr    
I gave whaler customer service a call regarding this issue. They assured me that the montauk transom is extremely rugged and will not have any problem with the motor tilted up, resting on the engine locks while towing. With my trailer configuration a transom saver is not an option, so that put my mind at ease and allowed me to accept what I can't change.
Good luck.
Jolly J posted 06-23-2001 05:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jolly J  Send Email to Jolly J     
Thanks for the input guys. Much appreciated.
Tom, the motor does have TNT, and I have been trailering with the rams fully retracted and the motor resting on the trailering brackets.
There seems to be a difference of opinion in these poats on whether a transom saver is required or not, including two different recommendations from BW, so I'm still confused.
DaveS, I went to the Saltfish website that you recommended, but the search feature was down, so I couldn't find anything. I'll try again later.

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