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Old 06-25-2011   #1
Eagle, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 15
Why alumiNum trailer?

We are new bees with a sixteen foot Hyside that we love. Looking for an affordable used trailer and have seen many Triton aluminum trailers at diff rivers. I realize aluminum doesn'ts rust but growing uo we used steel boat trailers and I dont remember any why do rafters often buy aluminum? If we can get a used one a few hundred $ cheaper than aluminum, are we being foolish? $ is tight for our family now but I dont want to throw good $ after bad. If it makes that much of a difference, we will spring for the aluminum. Any advice appreciated!!!

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Old 06-25-2011   #2
BCJ's Avatar
Grand Junction, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1978
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 523
Best answer from my point of view - - they aren't as heavy. Point is, I can move my trailer around the yard, across the lawn, in and out of tight spaces, without difficulty when there is no boat on it and even with a boat on it when properly balanced it is just easier to handle. That, plus sealed lights and no rust issues, is enough of a difference for me. BUT, when I didn't have the cash, certainly I went with steel . . . .

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Old 06-26-2011   #3
trickpony's Avatar
Bozeman, Montana
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 65
It's one of those things... aluminum is all the rage now, but I've had steel boat trailers/horse trailers/flatbeds etc. for years and they hold up fine - particularly in Colorado where the humidity is pretty low. For me (this is just my opinion though), the weight of steel on small trailers doesn't justify the price like it does for a big trailer (i.e. horse) where you're looking at the difference between a V8 and a diesel to get it down the road.

If you can, store it in a garage or under an awning or something.
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Old 06-30-2011   #4
Chip's Avatar
SE, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 1986
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,098
Most of the Triton or Newman SledBed aluminum trailers you'll find are made for snowmobiles. I just bought a tilting SledBed because it was only $1300 new.

The cat is for river research, so it has various odd spars and mounts for electronic gear, and a big trolling motor up front.

The aluminum snowmachine trailers work fine for boats, except snowmachines are quite heavy up front, so the trailer axle is set forward of where it should be for a raft, and the trailer won't balance right (have the proper amount of weight on the hitch). A cheap and temporary fix is to put a sandbag or two on the front of the trailer.

I'm going to move the axle on the SledBed back about a foot. I fabricated a mount for a geared winch that fits over the tilt-latch, so I can tilt the trailer at water's edge and winch the boat up, then tilt it forward and lock it down. Very slick. One person can load a fairly large raft.
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