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Author Topic:   Bunk Board Padding
SeaHag posted 05-08-2002 01:48 AM ET (US)   Profile for SeaHag   Send Email to SeaHag  
Here's another question. Again, I have a 20' outrage on a tandem. I getting ready to replace the 4 existing bare wood 2 x 4 bunks with 2 x 6's and overlay them. What is the opinion on padding for bunkboards. I've heard everything from standard bunk carpet to fire hose material?
Thoughts?
Arch Autenreith posted 05-08-2002 02:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for Arch Autenreith  Send Email to Arch Autenreith     
I'm replacing mine with old carpeting but am also waiting for others to weigh in to see if there is anything different or substantially better. Old carpeting has lasted me for 6 years but someone on here always seems to come up with a better idea.
triblet posted 05-08-2002 10:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
More importantly, use pressure treated 2x6,
not just pine.

As far as the carpet goes, we aren't talking
a lot of bucks: West want's 18.99 for 12'
x 11".

But the 2x6 is a good idea. New carpet time
is coming, and I was thinking about new bunk
boards then.


Chuck

triblet posted 05-08-2002 10:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
One more thing: when you staple the carpet,
don't use any old (rusting) staples. The
right staples are Monel or stainless. In
saltwater, they are the ONLY staples.


Chuck

SeaHag posted 05-08-2002 11:04 PM ET (US)     Profile for SeaHag  Send Email to SeaHag     
good point on the staples Chuck! That may have slipped by me.
Incidentally, most retailers (West Marine, etc) have the standard bunk Carpet. I did check Champion Trailer(www.championtrailer.com)where they have the same but its backed in rubber. 12" is $1.25/foot or a 12' piece is $14.85. I'll probably go with the latter.
HAB posted 05-09-2002 05:09 PM ET (US)     Profile for HAB  Send Email to HAB     
When I replaced my bunks on my larger trailer two years ago, I found that a stapler' either hand powered or electric, did not seat the staples well in the
"wolmanized" bunks that I used.
My solution was to use large head galvanized roofing nails. They worked great and really hold the carpet.
This is best for freshwater only! Just a thought.
SeaHag posted 05-09-2002 10:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for SeaHag  Send Email to SeaHag     
or you could use stainless nails ( $8.95 per 100 @ champion).
Whalerdan posted 05-10-2002 06:28 AM ET (US)     Profile for Whalerdan  Send Email to Whalerdan     
I used galvanized roofing nails. They come in many different lengths and the heads are nice and big to hold the carpet down. Get a length that won't go all the way through the board and nail on the back side. Also used carpet glue.
timmyb posted 05-10-2002 11:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for timmyb  Send Email to timmyb     
Bought new planks,and bought outdoor,indoor carpeting from home depot. It's pretty cheep.
triblet posted 05-12-2002 10:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
The planks should be pressure treated.

Chuck

Tom W Clark posted 05-13-2002 01:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     
DO NOT use pressure treated lumber unless you've specially ordered it from the plant and then dried it out prior to installation. The p.t. limber you buy at the lumber yard is a very low grade of lumber and not suitable for trailer bunks. Even an appearance grade of p.t. lumber like "Sunwood", "Outdoor Wood", ect. will most likely be Hemlock and far to weak and unreliable to support your boat.

There is nothing wrong with the pressure treatment itself, indeed, anything to help slow down the rot process is a good thing, but it is strength that you are looking for, not rot resistance. I have never seen a trailer bunk board suffer from dry rot, but I have seen many split apart.

What you want is something like Douglas fir which is readily available in a variety of grades, is inherently rot resistant, and is very strong. Western Red Cedar is even more rot resistant but far too soft for bunks. A rot resistant wood like Douglas fir is rot resistant all the way through the wood whereas p.t. lumber only has a surface treatment on it. If you cut it you can "paint" on some preservative on the end cut but it will not equal the pressure treatment.

P.t. lumber is made form cheap lumber with many more knots, flat grain and defects that make it unsuitable for use as trailer bunks. Furthermore, it is sold sopping wet and will shrink, twist and split as it dries out as well as losing its grip on the staples you use to attach the padding.

What you do want is bunk padding that dries quickly which old carpet does no. Use bunk carpet or outdoor carpet that drains, and is thin enough to attach easily. Use stainless steel or Monel staples and staple into the edges or bottom of the bunk boards.

Unfortunately, the bunk carpet that West Marine sells is sold in 12' lengths. Last summer I re-carpetted one of my trailers. The bunks are 7' long so I ended up buying two rolls. It was expensive. Outdoor carpet may have been a better choice.

I did put some old carpet on the bunks temporarily before a trip and it was a real pain. It was too think to use staples and I ended up having to use pan head sheet metal screws. The carpet worked OK as padding but was like a huge sponge that held water and dripped on the trailer for a very long time after coming out of the water. When I got back I got some real bunk carpet and it was much more satisfactory.

A Li Volsi posted 05-13-2002 01:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for A Li Volsi  Send Email to A Li Volsi     
Several seasons ago I purchased an item called slippery bunks from a national trailer builder (unfortunately the name escapes me now). The items were u-shaped and made of an extremely slippery plastic material. The kit came with stainless screws and was a breeze to install. The directions that came with the slippery bunks warns the user to ensure that the boat is strapped down prior to trailering. From my experience the boat will slid off in a gentle breeze!

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