The first step in discussing trailer boats is understanding just what the term means. A trailer boat is a boat small enough to be stored on dry land, transported via the trailer and launched into the water from the trailer, all without extensive assembly or disassembly.
There are advantages to a trailer boat over a larger boat that resides on the water for its entire useful life.
The first major advantage is the cost of storage. To handle a trailer boat, a simple and inexpensive shed is more than enough. For larger boats that must stay on the water at all times, one must have either a private dock on expensive waterfront property or a rented boat slip at a marina. The cost of either storage option for large boats can be quite high.
The second big advantage of trailer boats is also related to the ability to store them virtually anywhere. The biggest risk to boats that are constantly on the water is usually storms. Even a well moored boat can be dashed against the dock and damaged or even sunk. For those who have the deluxe mooring facilities that allow the boat to be lifted and stored above the water, preparing for a coming storm often means dropping everything else and making a special trip to stormproof the boat.
The last, and possibly most important, benefit of a trailer boat is the ability to choose different bodies of water. A trailer boat can be enjoyed in a local lake or taken across the country to a vacation location. Larger craft must often be disassembled and transported by professionals to a new location. The versatility of the trailer boat allows the owner to choose any destination suitable for the boat.
There are three general tiers of trailer boat:
Small Trailer Boats – These may be anything from wave runners to fishing skiffs. Such boats are small enough for a couple of people to carry and tow easily behind virtually any roadworthy vehicle.
Medium Trailer Boats – This category would include the smaller boats suitable for towing skiers behind or bass boats. When someone thinks of trailer boats, this category of boat is generally what comes to mind.
Large Trailer Boats – These boats push the envelope of being true trailer boats. In fact, most of the owners of such boats moor them at docks because their size pushes the limits of what one can tow behind a personal vehicle. Cabin cruisers suitable for skiing or enjoying a day on the lake are the most common large trailer boats.
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