Moderated Discussion Areas
  ContinuousWave: Whaler Performance
  Trailer Tongue Weight

Post New Topic  Post Reply
search | FAQ | profile | register | author help

Author Topic:   Trailer Tongue Weight
Jimm posted 06-15-2004 09:34 PM ET (US)   Profile for Jimm  
The Montauk 170 is more than a year old and there's not much left for me to do to it. I'm sitting there tonight wondering if the tongue weight on the EZ-Loader trailer is correct. I got the bathroom scale, put a piece of plywood across the top, and jacked the tongue down on to it. Holy Smoke!!! I thought that the tougue was supposed to have about 7% of the trailer weight (1400 for the boat, 300 for the motor, 300 for all other = 2000 X 7% = 140 lbs) The tongue weighs 305 pounds. Am I weighing it correctly? If so any ideas how far forward I should move the axle? Thanks.
Moe posted 06-15-2004 10:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for Moe  Send Email to Moe     
How 'bout 600-700 lbs for the trailer? 300/2600 to 2700 = 11 to 11.5% tongue weight.

The greater the tongue weight percentage, the less likely the trailer is to sway. I've always considered 10% an absolute minimum for safe trailering.

If your tow vehicle and hitch are rated for it, I'd stay with that.

Jerry Townsend posted 06-16-2004 02:20 AM ET (US)     Profile for Jerry Townsend  Send Email to Jerry Townsend     
Jimm - In the reference site, there is an article regarding making those calculations you are asking about. --- Jerry/Idaho
alvispollard posted 06-22-2004 09:39 AM ET (US)     Profile for alvispollard  Send Email to alvispollard     
Tongue weight should be 10-15% of total weight (270-350# for you).
jimh posted 06-22-2004 10:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
All the mentions of tongue weight at "10-percent" are generally applied to big travel trailers that have a much larger wind area than a Boston Whaler boat. I have towed a Boston Whaler boat on a trailer for over 10,000 highway miles without a trace of "fish-tailing" and the tongue weight is about 5-percent of the total trailer weight.

With a boat, compared to a travel trailer, there is much less wind load area to be affected by side draft winds, and the overall height is much lower with a boat than a travel trailer. For these reasons I think that towing at a tongue weight of 5-percent is not a problem for most trailers with a Boston Whaler boat on them.

If you are towing a 1200-lbs Montauk it does not make that much difference, but if you are hauling a 4500-lb boat, there is a big difference between 5-percent and 10-percent tongue weight it terms of the load on the tow vehicle's rear suspension.

TampaTom posted 06-22-2004 10:43 PM ET (US)     Profile for TampaTom  Send Email to TampaTom     
I agree that 300lb is unnecessarily high tongue weight for your boat. Instead of moving the axel, move the bow stop back 2" and recheck weight. The post that the bow stop and winch are clamped to should be clamped to a center bar and can be moved back
Tom W Clark posted 06-22-2004 11:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     
10 percent of gross trailer weight should be considered a maximum, not a minimum tongue weight. Convention dictates that the tongue weight should be 5 to 10 percent, and as the boat gets larger, being closer to 5 percent is desirable.

300 pounds with a MT 170? that's way too much. You should be able to lift the tongue.

whalerron posted 06-22-2004 11:43 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalerron  Send Email to whalerron     
I agree with jimh. The owners manual that came with my Calkins trailer said that the tongue weight should be 5% to 7% of the trailer weight. The tongue weight for mine is set to 7% of the 16'7" boat and trailer and the trailer follows without any fishtailing.

Also, when adjusting your tongue weight, DO NOT slide the boat backward or forward on the trailer to adjust the tongue weight. The boat's transom must rest on the rear roller of your trailer. If you need to lessen the tongue weight, slide the axle forward a few inches at a time until the tongue weight is where you want it.

- Ron

jimh posted 06-26-2004 08:20 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
For advice on how to weight the tongue weight, as well as how to calculate how much movement of the axle or boat will be necessary to affect a change in the tongue weight, please see the excellent article in the Reference Section:

Trailer Hitch Loads

Post New Topic  Post Reply
Hop to:

Contact Us | RETURN to ContinuousWave Top Page

Powered by: Ultimate Bulletin Board, Freeware Version 2000
Purchase our Licensed Version- which adds many more features!
© Infopop Corporation (formerly Madrona Park, Inc.), 1998 - 2000.