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Bassboy1645

Travel Cautions??

8 posts in this topic

Towing my boat home from college at the end of the year and back up north three times this summer probabaly. I was always told to grease the bearings, bearing buddies, alot of stuff about bearings in general. what are some problems you guys have had or what are some other minor/big things to watch for on long hauls?? On our trip to vermiilion we load the boats down with coolers and camping gear and my buddies dad's tounge on the ball reciever cracked and needed an emergency weld job. any other thoughts??

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Check the bearings/grease. Check the electrical connections and lights. Check the hitch/tongue/chains. Check the tie-down straps. Check for (no) flying objects.

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Don't check for "flying objects" to closely, I've picked up a bunch of great stuff on the Gunflint Trail over the years. grin.gif

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Hey gunflint, that great stuff was mine! Can I have it back, please??

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Quote:

Don't check for "flying objects" to closely, I've picked up a bunch of great stuff on the Gunflint Trail over the years.
grin.gif


No kidding, my brother in law found a nice 9.9 outboard once laying in the ditch, scratched up pretty bad on one side of the cowling, but otherwise in excellent conditions, looks like somebody lost a kicker or they small motor, he took it to a Hwy Patrol station but seriously doubted it found it's owner after that.... blush.gif

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At a MINIMUM, I would suggest pulling your hubs off to check everything out every other year. When I say everything, I mean clean all of the parts well and look at the surfaces of the bearing and races for pitting, rusting, evidence of high heat (bluing of the surfaces). Make sure seal surface on the spindle isn't worn (fishing line will play hell on that steel surface, believe or not)(Might as well check behind the prop on your outboard at this time for the same thing as well). Replace the seals on the hubs even if they look OK- they probably aren't. Make sure to hand pack the bearings (put a big blob of grease in the palm of one hand and kind of "carve" the edge of the bearing into the blob until grease comes through every part of the circle). When you put the axle nut back on, make sure NOT to overtighten it. Just a bit beyond hand tight is good, but you need to seat the bearings first (preload) by tightening as you rotate the wheel until you just feel a slight resistance and then backing the nut back off. It is a pretty simple process, but is VERY critical. If you don't know what you are doing, or don't feel comfortable with it, have a professional do the job. You really don't need a marina to do the work-any automotive or small engine shop knows what to do. Otherwise, yes-keeping those bearing buddies full is a wise idea. What isn't a wise idea, however, is loading that boat full of stuff. Most trailers are tailored to the boat with little margin for extra weight. The cracked hitch is a little scary-I would take a close look at those bearings for sure, not to mention the axle, shackles, u-bolts, springs etc... after hauling all of that extra load.

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john, nice description on the bearing job. Its not that hard to do at home plus if your not sure on replacement bearing, race, and seal sizes you can take the parts to the store. On the other hand, bearing failure on the road will ruin your day.

As all ready said, check the lights and wiring. Corroded bulb sockets are probably the main culprit for light failures.

Check the tire pressure, the correct pressure will be on the side of the tire. Along with a spare tire you need a lug wrench.

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When I have my axles apart, I will replace bearings seals, and races every other year, they only cost about $20 per wheel, and you have the piece of mind that there isnt a rust spot on the inside of the bearing that you didnt see. I also keep the old set I took out and keep them in a plastic sandwich bag and leave that in my boat incase of emergency.

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