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Jan 23rd, 2013
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advice on tongue weight #13646998 07/28/20 01:33 AM
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Eric Online Content OP
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I have a 16 '10" alumacraft on a shorelandr single axle trailer with 90 Evinrude. Tongue weight still way to heavy after i moved boat back 3 inches. I even temporarily moved 2 trolling motor battery back and hardly helped at all. I can not pick up tongue at all and it squats anything other than a full size truck. How big a deal is moving axle forward? Any other suggestions. Please pm me ortext/call 972 740 1243 Thx in advance[Linked Image]
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Last edited by Eric; 07/28/20 05:08 PM.
Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647064 07/28/20 02:18 AM
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Is there a reason you don't just push the boat back as far as is required to fix the balance ?

Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647071 07/28/20 02:24 AM
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What does the whole package weigh and what is the tongue weight. Just because you cant pick it up doesn't mean its too much. Should be between 7-10%

Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647171 07/28/20 06:27 AM
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Where do you have the TM batteries in that boat to begin with? I wouldn't think you'd want them anywhere but in the rear, though I'm not familiar with the hull you have. Have you used all of the adjustment available to move the boat back on the trailer? Some photos would help.

tmd is correct that you need to add up all the weights of your rig - hull, motor, trolling motor, batteries, fuel (gas = 6#/gallon), AND trailer - the entire rig, and throw in an estimate for "all other stuff". Around 10% of that total is not excessive, so even if everything adds up to 3000# (and it could be heavier), that 3000# means a tongue weight pushing 300# is not really overly excessive. You can explore the weight with a bathroom scale, a wood "pad" and a jackstand. Don't measure at the front jack-wheel, that's not at the coupler. You can put the scale with wood pad at the coupler and start to let tongue down on it. Watch the weight so you don't destroy the scale if it's really heavy. The number is meaningless without the total weight as we describe.

I checked a typical 17' Alumacraft and the 90 Evinrude, guessed 1000# for trailer, and with the other items estimated, easily got to 2700# total. A 270# tongue weight would not be out of the ballpark for the example rig I made estimates for.

Last edited by Flippin-Out; 07/28/20 06:47 AM.
Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647629 07/28/20 03:55 PM
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Ok added pic . Now my question is can I safely have 13” of boat hanging off trailer with all the weight of motor ? I do want to occasionally fish cedar creek and maybe Texoma but 95 percent just my lake ( calender )a few blocks away .

Last edited by Eric; 07/28/20 03:57 PM.
Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647647 07/28/20 04:04 PM
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Have you already moved the boat back to the point the transom is at the rear end of the hull supports? A proper sized trailer would have support all the way to the transom. The pic is interesting, but how about an overall pic from the side of the boat/trailer and one from the low rear so we can see trailer bunks, etc.

Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Flippin-Out] #13647705 07/28/20 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Flippin-Out
Have you already moved the boat back to the point the transom is at the rear end of the hull supports? A proper sized trailer would have support all the way to the transom. The pic is interesting, but how about an overall pic from the side of the boat/trailer and one from the low rear so we can see trailer bunks, etc.


Yup, a picture would definitely help. From the way you're describing things it almost sounds as if your trailer is too small for your rig.

Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647749 07/28/20 05:09 PM
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I added a few more . Are they helpful ? Trying to avoid buying a truck to use just to tow boat .

Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647776 07/28/20 05:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Eric
I added a few more . Are they helpful ? Trying to avoid buying a truck to use just to tow boat .

The photos are very helpful. Your trailer is pushing the limits of "minimum sizing" in my mind, but I'm conservative on such things. However, all is not lost.

Remember, even if you had a huge trailer, you can't simply move the boat back to get a light tongue weight. A tongue weight too light will make any trailer sway like a hooker advertising for business. So, there is a limit you will reach where the rig will become unstable. In the extreme, it can even flip the trailer, or cause you to jack-knife the vehicle/trailer. The risk of trailer sway is usually the highest at higher speeds; if a trailer sways, slowing down usually results in the sway subsiding.

I'm hesitant to tell you to hang the transom off the back of the trailer bunks, but that can be dealt with. As I said, there's a limit to how much you can move based on looking at the winch stand. Measure that, with allowance to keep the tongue jack on there, just move it back also. Let's say that results in room to move the winch stand back another 5-6 inches. You might not be able to tow like that, but that's the adjustment room you can muster up front.

Now to fix the back. Notice that the bunk boards are held on with right angle brackets. The bracket will be screwed into the bottom of the bunk board. You would want to move those brackets forward on the bunk board so that the new position of the bunk board puts it back far enough so that the transom rests on it - when you've moved the winch stand back. As an example, 6 inches + 4 inches (current overhang) means you move the brackets forward 10 inches. Moving those forward will move the board to the rear, again supporting the transom. You can even buy longer bunk boards already covered with carpet if you like that idea.

You can try moving the boat as described, but that's not to say the tongue weight will still be adequate. You'll need to tow it to find out. You really should keep a good weight there; 100# may be too light, but you might get away with 200#. It's hard to tell since you have no idea what the tongue weight is now.

Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647800 07/28/20 05:59 PM
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I like your swaying anology. Everything you say makes perfect sense. I thing I failed to state is that i am woefully inept at fixing or making things, My dad was so go as a goofy kid I always let him do stuff and never paid attention. I joke I have 2 tools....a small hammer and a large hammer , but thats pretty close. It is ironic.I have had the boat a month and not been in water yet. Next time off trailer I will look , and take more pics . Cant thank you and others enough for all your help. I will keep in touch and let you know how my story goes. Eric

Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647811 07/28/20 06:06 PM
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Eric, I bet a trailer shop would not charge very much to move those bunks back for you. They will be able to lift the boat to do it. They might even have longer bunks if you want to go that way to be sure the front part of the boat is still adequately supported. Because your trailer has supports within inches of the current ends of the bunks, I would have no qualm with telling a shop you want the bunks back 10 inches farther.

If you end up with it adjusted and a bit of bunk sticks out the back, no harm. They will even adjust it back on the trailer for you. Go to a trailer shop, show them the photos, and I bet they can quote from that.

Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647842 07/28/20 06:38 PM
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From the looks of the pictures I think you moved the boat too far back. That rig with a moderate amount of gear is probably pushing 2700#'s including gear. Set up properly tongue weight is going to be around 300#. Like I said before you need to weigh it or at least the tongue. Just cause you cant lift it doesn't mean it too heavy. You left out what vehicle its making squat. Trailer setup may have been totally fine all along and tow vehicle is whats inadequate.

Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647863 07/28/20 06:51 PM
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definately inadequate tow vehicle.But spending bulk of $$$ on boat left little for vehicle.

Grea tidea on talking to trailer shop and getting more of their thoughts and a quote. anyone know any in east tx area? I am betwen athens and Tyler

I know I am doing it all wrong but trying to do it on the frugal end. Weight on the ground wheel was 304. I know the higher weight will be less but not much.

Toying with just setting both trolling batteries on rear floor to help a little as they are mounted about windshield.

TRying to talk a few neighbors into letting me rent their truck when i want to launch boat .

Thx to all for fast answers. Very knowledgeable helpful members on TFF

In my mind a 15' 10" aluminum boat would not weigh this much. MY BAD

Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647875 07/28/20 07:03 PM
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Move boat forward till the transom is on the bunks ! Then get an equalizer hitch .They make small one for about $250.00.


I would agree with you , but then we would both be WRONG !!!!!
Re: advice on tongue weight [Re: Eric] #13647918 07/28/20 07:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Eric
definately inadequate tow vehicle.But spending bulk of $$$ on boat left little for vehicle.

Grea tidea on talking to trailer shop and getting more of their thoughts and a quote. anyone know any in east tx area? I am betwen athens and Tyler

I know I am doing it all wrong but trying to do it on the frugal end. Weight on the ground wheel was 304. I know the higher weight will be less but not much.

Toying with just setting both trolling batteries on rear floor to help a little as they are mounted about windshield.

TRying to talk a few neighbors into letting me rent their truck when i want to launch boat .

Thx to all for fast answers. Very knowledgeable helpful members on TFF

In my mind a 15' 10" aluminum boat would not weigh this much. MY BAD


Redistributing weight on the trailer to compensate for an inadequate tow vehicle can be dangerous.

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