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Author Topic:   Trailer with lifting keel rollers & sealed bearings
noswah posted 11-20-2001 01:29 PM ET (US)   Profile for noswah   Send Email to noswah  

I have a trailer that has keel rollers that lift the boat up off all the bunks when you pull a lever. There are bunks between the keel rollers and long bunks to the sides. Does anyone else have a trailer like this?

Has anyone converted their trailer to sealed bearing? It seems to me that if they are making the todays vehicles that way it should be possible to change a trailer over.

It seems that wheel bearings are one of the major breakdown factors, so I was thinking of making the change. Any thoughts, thanks

whalerron posted 11-20-2001 10:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalerron  Send Email to whalerron     
Wow! It actually lifts the boat off of the bunks? That lever must be about 10 feet long or you must have forearms like Popeye! Could you possibly email pictures of that trailer?

- ron

noswah posted 11-20-2001 11:37 PM ET (US)     Profile for noswah  Send Email to noswah     

Ron, I can certainly understand you having a hard time believing that such a trailer exist, as I had never seen one before either.

I don't have a digital camera so I can't email you any pictures, but I can do the next best thing. This is the companys name, address, and phone number. Perhaps they can send you a brochure or picture.

Steelco-Sportsman Trailers
12405 18th St.
Santa Fe, Texas 77510

And Ron the lever is only about 30 inches long but my arrms, well I'm 6'4" and 340lbs, so you figure it out. If they won't send you the proof you need then email me your address and I send you some regular snap shots.

blackdog posted 11-21-2001 09:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for blackdog  Send Email to blackdog     
I can see getting the proper leverage with the right ratio of gearing or levers.
I doubt it is a one to one ratio.
Sounds like a great product
Tom W Clark posted 11-21-2001 11:27 AM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     
I have a trailer that accomplishes the same end, but does it by raising and lowering the bunks. It is a 1965 flat frame dual axle trailer with keel rollers.

The bunks are on pivoting supports that can be cranked up or down by means of a threaded crank handle at the rear of the bunk. Works like a screw jack with substantial mechanical advantage.

But either way, the goal is the same: shift the weight of the boat off the bunks for launching and retrieving.

noswah, I've never heard of sealed bearings for a boat trailer and I suspect that is because they won't work. I don't think there is a sealed bearing made that can withstand the pressure of water being forced into the bearings when launching.

Dr T posted 11-21-2001 11:50 AM ET (US)     Profile for Dr T  Send Email to Dr T     
I agree with Tom on the bearings.

Nature abhors a vacuum. Water is drawn into the bearing when they cool from being immersed. This causes whatever air pockets that exist inside the hub to decrease in volume, thereby creating a vacuum.

There was a thread in the August time frame started by ORCA in the performance section that may be useful for you.

bigz posted 11-21-2001 12:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for bigz    
"100% Submersible sealed axles with heavy duty durable
cast iron hubs and positive bearing protection."

This what they say about their hubs and bearings.

There is also no mention of the trailer Noswah has then again they may have discontinued it --- appear as pretty decent trailers.

noswah posted 11-21-2001 01:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for noswah  Send Email to noswah     

Gentleman, thanks for the feed back.
First, Blackdog I would say it's a 3 to 1 ratio and the keel rollers are on a brace that seems to be about 22 degrees and slanted toward the front. When you pull the main lever it pulls the braces to 180 degrees.

The trailer I have is a (Model 17LR) and it was made in 1983 and they still make them to this day. I talked to Andrew and he said the LR stands for Lift Rollers.

It seems to be a well made trailer as it tilts, has a dropped axle and is totally galvanized. I think whats nice is you won't have to back as far into the water cause if you pull the lever the keel roller rise up and it can roll off as opposed to being floated off.

They have been making trailers since 1956 and are sold from Texas to Florida. The price range for one to fit a Montauk is from $1400 to 1600. They don't sell to individuals only thru dealers. I like it better then any trailer I've ever had. GVW is 2800 lbs and carry weight is 2200 lbs.

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