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localangler

Looking at replacement trailers

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So my McClain trailer is just showing her age. She needs new axles and springs plus I found a few cracks from fatigue. I'm trying to decide whether I should repair the trailer or replace it. A quick call to Charleston trailers said they could build a tandem axle trailer with brakes on both axles, LED lights, all aluminum and stainless components with torsion axles for about $3900. Local Pathfinder dealer recommended the Ameritrail but it was over $5000.  I know in the past guys have recommended some others as quality replacements but I'm drawing a blank on them and approximate prices. I don't need a specific brand but would like a balance between cost and quality that will last if I do my part. 

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Sport Trail has a great reputation,  but getting it here would be a problem.  I priced it and it was a little less than Amertrail.

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I saw a Charleston Trailer at the boat ramp one day and I've seen their photos on craigslist.org. They use Kodiak brakes aluminum bunks and invited me to drop by anytime if I called to make sure they had a trailer being built. Right now I'm trying to justify repairing over replacement but I've found several cracks at bunk welds plus other issues and I'm not sure when to just throw in the towel on the old one. 

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No trailer is perfect and yes, an Ameratrail is a little pricey, but they are well made, they pull great and load great.   

In the long run, you will be happier that you bought an Ameratrail even though they cost a grand more.

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I went by Charleston Trailer today. Kodiak dermacoat brakes, barrier tape between different metals, all fasteners were stainless and a 5 year warranty with the trailer built 30 minutes from home. It was on par with the Ameritrail I looked at before but I will look again before deciding. Replacement parts are going to cost about $900 if I decide to repair. 

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When I bought my 1810 it didn't come with a trailer. Ameritrail loaned me a trailer to pick-up the boat in Tampa and haul it back were a breeze to work with. I dealt with a guy named Arthur Allison and he was a total professional. Everyone I dealt with treated me like I owned the place.  The product is hard to beat and their customer service was great. 

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12 hours ago, Capt. Tyler said:

Owens & Sons!

These guys are awesome.  All aluminum and stainless, built like tank and have always been quite a bit cheaper than ameitrail every time I've shopped em.

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I have an Ameratrail that I absolutely love, but they are pricey. I've only had it about 9 months, but no complaints so far.

Peterson makes an awesome trailer too. That was my next option, I would give them a really good look. Super well made product and great customer service. 

I like they had the all aluminum bunks with rubber instead of carpet. A buddy has one and loves it.

http://petersontrailers.com/

Josh B.

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11 hours ago, Josh B said:

I have an Ameratrail that I absolutely love, but they are pricey. I've only had it about 9 months, but no complaints so far.

Peterson makes an awesome trailer too. That was my next option, I would give them a really good look. Super well made product and great customer service. 

I like they had the all aluminum bunks with rubber instead of carpet. A buddy has one and loves it.

http://petersontrailers.com/

Josh B.

Out of precaution, check your caliper brackets. I know of at least one other person who had the same issue as me. My trailer was 8 months old. Luckily this issue reared it's head a couple days before I left for a 12 hour drive to kentucky for a tournament. Whole bracket corroded and the bolts fell out. Trailer was 60% freshwater as well. The 3 other brackets were fine. 

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On 8/18/2016 at 11:33 AM, localangler said:

So my McClain trailer is just showing her age. She needs new axles and springs plus I found a few cracks from fatigue. I'm trying to decide whether I should repair the trailer or replace it. A quick call to Charleston trailers said they could build a tandem axle trailer with brakes on both axles, LED lights, all aluminum and stainless components with torsion axles for about $3900. Local Pathfinder dealer recommended the Ameritrail but it was over $5000.  I know in the past guys have recommended some others as quality replacements but I'm drawing a blank on them and approximate prices. I don't need a specific brand but would like a balance between cost and quality that will last if I do my part. 

Localangler - any idea what your McClain is worth.  I've got the same issue - the McClain my boat came on needs new springs and I'd probably just do the axles while I'm at it and add brakes as it doesn't have any. So looking at rebuilding or just buying a new one.  I don't really like how the trailer loads, but really don't have any issues with the quality of the build.  I bought it with my boat, both about 5 years old at the time and never thought the trailer was made for my rig.  So anyway, wondered how much I could get for it, and whether I should put the new springs on it to sell it.

I'd likely replace with an Owen's - never had one but the one's I've seen are great and heard a lot of good things about them.  I called and had them quote me over the phone a couple years back and was looking at around $3500 then depending on what all options I wanted. 

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I agree on the trailer not feeling like it was built for the boat. And mine just felt like is just a little light on materials used. I don't want my fenders flexing as much as these do if I step on them. 

 

I'm not sure what my trailer is worth but all I see it being good for at the end of day is scrap. So when I replace it I will take it apart (to get the most money) and sell it at the scrap yard. I couldn't sell it to anyone with a clear conscience.  I can safely finish out the next few months on it and replace it then if I do some repairs now.  

 

The Owens and Son quote email came back the other day and they're now sitting at about $4800 after making it comparable in build to others. I wish I could get it for the money they offered it to you several years ago but inflation is a nasty beast.

 

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On 8/23/2016 at 11:20 AM, Josh B said:

I have an Ameratrail that I absolutely love, but they are pricey. I've only had it about 9 months, but no complaints so far.

Peterson makes an awesome trailer too. That was my next option, I would give them a really good look. Super well made product and great customer service. 

I like they had the all aluminum bunks with rubber instead of carpet. A buddy has one and loves it.

http://petersontrailers.com/

Josh B.

I'm with Josh. Peterson has built my last three trailers and I've been very pleased. He actually now builds trailers without too many options....all the good stuff comes standard, double bend frame, all SS hardware and bolts, aluminum bunks, torsion axles, etc.. It's a long way from Mr. Localangler's location but if someone else is looking in the Tampa area I'd give Jason a call.

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My tournament partner has a Peterson under his Beavertail. I am not impressed. They do have great service after the sale however. 

The Ramlin under my last skiff and the Ameratrail under my HPX-V 18 are significantly nicer trailers. His just looks like a run of the mill Magictilt or something. Nothing special. The Ramlin and Ameratrail look like what they are, highly custom trailers that fit the boat like a glove.

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I don't want to bash Ameratrail, but I've had multiple issues with mine. For the price you pay, you shouldn't have any issues. I'll look at another manufacturer for my next trailer.

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Rolls Axle Trailers out of Plant City Florida.  Every trailer previously mentioned has Leaf springs or torsion bars which corrode and fail.  Rolls Lifetime spring is exactly that, Lasts a lifetime. 

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