Eventide Bilge Keeler Trailer

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Mike Brown
Posts: 29
Joined: Sat August 5th, 2006, 11:35 am
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Eventide Bilge Keeler Trailer

Postby Mike Brown » Wed June 15th, 2011, 11:59 am

Hi John
I'm just wondering if there is anyway you would be able to sketch out the size of the trailer you have for "Fiddler's Green". outlining the width and over length and length of drawbar. I'm just wanting some measurements that I can supply an engineer as I'm looking to have one made for my 24ft Eventide bilge keelerso that I can haul out in the winter or any other time I need to do maintanence and tow it home. The hardstand areas at boat yards are getting too expensive now. My Eventide is solid teak diagonal planked constrution so I guess it would weigh somewhere around 2000kg. Wouldit be best to have it built with three axles like yours of would I get away with just tandem axle. I guess it would need to have heavy duty light truck wheels etc. I had also thought that I could have a tray made for it and use as a general trailer when not required for the yacht, hence dual purpose. What are your thoughts.
Kind regards
Mike Brown
New Zealand

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Fiddler's Green
Posts: 183
Joined: Wed March 1st, 2006, 12:58 pm
Location: Essex

Re: Eventide Bilge Keeler Trailer

Postby Fiddler's Green » Sat July 2nd, 2011, 10:47 am

Good idea Mike,

Tell you what I will take a few measurements for you and add them here, but will do an in depth article and add it to the one already on the site http://www.eventides.org.uk/trailer.htm

I would say a 2 ton capacity 4 wheel trailer would be right for a 24ft Eventide.

I went to 3 axles as it was easier to spread the 4 tons all up weight of my extended 26 and trailer. Could use Ford Transit running gear. If a 4 wheel trailer and 4 tons would have to use real commercial wheels and tyres etc... Also Indespension made the transit axles and suspensions in the right weight size, I have 1.5 ton per axle to make total 4.5 ton to be on the safe side!

The main axle section is 6' wide, made from 6 x 3 inch rolled steel channel, up side down, with the suspension units bolted under the ends. The axles are bolted to longtitudinals than in turn support the bilge keels, with 2 bits of 3" angle, with welded on supports for mudguards, made from old agricultural vehicle tyres, and uprights with guides to guide the bilge keels into the right place. The whole Axle frame is bolted to the main backbone with dozens of 'U' bolts. In extreemis it could be moved, but to be honest it never has been, once we got it right we have left it there and the trailer has been used to cart 6 different Eventides a WildDuck and several smaller boats. The draw bar has a pair of angle irons from the forward corners of the Axle assembly to the forward end of the draw bar, again fastened with heavy 'U' bolts.

The draw bar is made of 2 bits of 3 x 1.5 box, 18 ft long extending back beyond to the back of the trailer... They could be longer if you have a separate skeg, to support it, mine has a long keel and most of it is on the triailer, but I do have 8ft of boat overhanging, which is not correct in some countries. however a light extension to the trailer can be added to off set that. If I did it again I might go for the next size up, as there is a small amount of flex... this is taken out by the bow chock fitting hard under the bow and a chain from the boat tensioned to the trailer. We also chain the two bilge keels to the trailer, we use no straps that would damage the deck etc.. has worked wonderfully for over 30 years.

You have to measure your own boat up to get the critical measurments right.. for instance width of main keel on mine is 6" and I have a channel of gap between the two longtitudinals 8" wide for it. Also the bilge keel width varies slightly so that has to be taken into account so the trailer is wide enough, mine has a max bilge keel width of 6' 1". (My keels are 6 ft apart.)

The bilge keels need to rest on a long timber chock, mine is 1.5" thick as my bilge plates are that much shallower than the main keel. You need to measure that on yours.

The bow chock is adjustable for and aft on mine, will include pics when I write the article, but if you look on the Gallery for Fiddler's Green, you will see a few pics of her on the trailer, also on the 'Featured boats pages and on past Newsletters. that should give you a few ideas.

Proud owner and builder of 'Fiddler's Green'

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