Cross country towing check list

Discussion in 'Trailering' started by El Capitan, Jul 9, 2019.

  1. El Capitan

    El Capitan Member

    301
    Jul 9, 2014
    Chicago IL./Vero Beach, Fl
    1970 SRV 180 w 2.5L Mercruiser.
    2000 Ford Expedition Eddie Bauer
    120HP Mercruiser
    Planning trip from Illinois to Florida, 1100 mi one way.

    Wondered if any has a check list that would add to the obvious items such as tires, check brakes, lights, etc?

    Towing a SRV180 on single axle that has electric brakes w a Ford Expedition 4x4 so I’m good on rig.

    Thank you
     
  2. MonacoMike

    MonacoMike Well-Known Member PLATINUM Sponsor

    Sep 15, 2009
    Indiana lakes and Lake Michigan
    2000 Cruisers 3870
    8.2 Mercs
    85 Sea Ray Monaco 197
    260hp Alpha 1
    I always carry a trailering safety kit that includes my...

    Dewalt 1/2 inch impact and sockets for quick wheel changes.

    A jack that works with the trailer.

    2 spare tires for long trips especially if night travel is involved.

    A full set of bearings and install tools and supplies.

    A pair of Clip on emergency Flashing LED bicycle red lights.

    Flares.

    1/4 inch chain and load binder. (Held up the rear axle on a tri-ax trailer to get to a repair shop, used to secure trailer to the ball when coupler broke to get to repair shop.)

    BoatUS towing coverage including trailer coverage...

    MM
     
  3. wyrman

    wyrman Active Member SILVER Sponsor

    993
    Jul 12, 2012
    Tri-Cities, Wa
    2007 310 Sundancer
    Twin 350's, V drives
    1994 18' Bluewater bowrider
    I carry a smaller size floor jack, because trailers with a flat are next to impossible to get any other jack under them.
    I also carry a spare hub with packed bearings and grease seal installed.
    The Dewalt 1/2" impact made changing a blowout a couple of years ago quick work for me.
     
    El Capitan likes this.
  4. RollerCoastr

    RollerCoastr Well-Known Member

    Nov 15, 2007
    Cedar Point, OH / Miami, FL / MacRay Harbor, MI
    1997 400DA
    340HP 7.4 Mercruiser Bluewaters
    Garmin 741, 742, 8212, 24HD, Intellian I2
    1999 280BR
    Twin 250HP Merc 350 Alpha Ones
    Laser thermometer. Check the hubs regularly - high temps can give you an early warning of failure. (can also clue you in to sticking brakes, which happens to me more often than bearing issues)
     
    El Capitan likes this.
  5. MonacoMike

    MonacoMike Well-Known Member PLATINUM Sponsor

    Sep 15, 2009
    Indiana lakes and Lake Michigan
    2000 Cruisers 3870
    8.2 Mercs
    85 Sea Ray Monaco 197
    260hp Alpha 1
    I really bought into the check hubs with laser thermometer but the technique failed me. Never had a high temp reading but wheel came close to just falling off and the bearings had disintegrated. Not saying it is not useful, just not the end all be all I was led to believe...

    MM
     
  6. RollerCoastr

    RollerCoastr Well-Known Member

    Nov 15, 2007
    Cedar Point, OH / Miami, FL / MacRay Harbor, MI
    1997 400DA
    340HP 7.4 Mercruiser Bluewaters
    Garmin 741, 742, 8212, 24HD, Intellian I2
    1999 280BR
    Twin 250HP Merc 350 Alpha Ones
    Wow. Do you have a theory on why it didn't read hot as it was failing? I haven't had a complete failure, but I pulled my tri-axle from Miami to Michigan and sure enough, the hub that was slightly higher than the rest had a blown real seal.

    It also helped me troubleshoot my sticking brake actuator. Not as well as smoke did, but that's another story.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2019
  7. MonacoMike

    MonacoMike Well-Known Member PLATINUM Sponsor

    Sep 15, 2009
    Indiana lakes and Lake Michigan
    2000 Cruisers 3870
    8.2 Mercs
    85 Sea Ray Monaco 197
    260hp Alpha 1
    I was fairly dedicated to checking them, then last spring doing checks bearing checks before a trip the wheel was literally falling off the hub.

    MM
     
  8. El Capitan

    El Capitan Member

    301
    Jul 9, 2014
    Chicago IL./Vero Beach, Fl
    1970 SRV 180 w 2.5L Mercruiser.
    2000 Ford Expedition Eddie Bauer
    120HP Mercruiser
    Great recommendations thank you.

    So far I’ve added more tools and equipment than I ever thought about.

    Most notably is the laser temp gun.

    Most troublesome for me anyways is having additional bearing kits. I’ve never changed one.

    I’m kinda rethinking this trip now.
     
  9. wyrman

    wyrman Active Member SILVER Sponsor

    993
    Jul 12, 2012
    Tri-Cities, Wa
    2007 310 Sundancer
    Twin 350's, V drives
    1994 18' Bluewater bowrider
    Make sure your bearings are in good shape before you leave and you should be fine.
    I wouldn't cancel a trip out of fear of a bearing going bad.
     
    MonacoMike likes this.
  10. RollerCoastr

    RollerCoastr Well-Known Member

    Nov 15, 2007
    Cedar Point, OH / Miami, FL / MacRay Harbor, MI
    1997 400DA
    340HP 7.4 Mercruiser Bluewaters
    Garmin 741, 742, 8212, 24HD, Intellian I2
    1999 280BR
    Twin 250HP Merc 350 Alpha Ones
    I agree. We’re just trying to get you as prepared as possible. If we wanted to scare you, we’d talk about how lousy tires are these days. :D
     
  11. Todd320

    Todd320 Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    849
    Jul 21, 2016
    St. Petersburg, FL
    2007 Sea Ray 320DA
    Twin V-drive 5.7L 350 Horizon
    I’m sure you know this, but I’ll mention it anyway: Keep your tire pressure near the max pressure. The pressure is what supports the weight. For example, my trailer tires were rated at 1750 lbs at 50 psi (if I recall), at 35 psi, they don’t support 1750. I always checked each morning when cool to verify I was at 47 or 48. Only had one flat ever in 14 years of ownership, and that was when I set the pressure to 38-40, might have been a coincidence. I towed a 23’ hurricane deck boat, loaded with stuff (just under 5,000 lbs total, I’m guessing) 700 miles to Tennessee (and another 700 back) every single year, and never had an issue. I did get new hubs, bearings, springs, and axles several times in the spring, mainly due to salt water usage. I also would use a grease gun to pump a bit of grease into the hubs before each leg, I had buddy bearings so you could tell if they started to dry out.
     
    Woody likes this.
  12. MonacoMike

    MonacoMike Well-Known Member PLATINUM Sponsor

    Sep 15, 2009
    Indiana lakes and Lake Michigan
    2000 Cruisers 3870
    8.2 Mercs
    85 Sea Ray Monaco 197
    260hp Alpha 1
    I have been given the treatment here because of some of what I carry in my first aid kit, things way beyond my pay grade. BUT, if the unthinkable happens and surgical precision is needed, either by a doctor or medical professional nearby, or the most qualified person there, I have the tools, including my much laughed at scalpel.


    I have only needed bearings once, and did not have them and the places that would were closed. I began carrying them and never needed them. Get them and I assure you, they will not ever be needed, and you will already have them for the next service due. LOL

    MM
     
  13. yobub

    yobub Active Member PLATINUM Sponsor GOLD Sponsor

    273
    Jul 29, 2016
    Chicago
    1998 400 Sundancer
    Cat 3116's
    [QUOTE="El Capitan, post: 1070364, member: 35638"
    I’m kinda rethinking this trip now.[/QUOTE]
    I did that trip about 15 years ago with a 24' runabout behind a Suburban. The memories of my kids in our boat with a manatee lounging in the slip next to us are priceless. Take the trip.
     
  14. wyrman

    wyrman Active Member SILVER Sponsor

    993
    Jul 12, 2012
    Tri-Cities, Wa
    2007 310 Sundancer
    Twin 350's, V drives
    1994 18' Bluewater bowrider
    On tire pressure. I was told just a few weeks ago when I got new tires on my truck.
    Don't go off of what the tire says. Go off of what the vehicle says.
     
  15. El Capitan

    El Capitan Member

    301
    Jul 9, 2014
    Chicago IL./Vero Beach, Fl
    1970 SRV 180 w 2.5L Mercruiser.
    2000 Ford Expedition Eddie Bauer
    120HP Mercruiser
    All you guys are great. I very much appreciate your advice, encouragement, and the humor!

    Thank you all.
     
  16. Todd320

    Todd320 Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    849
    Jul 21, 2016
    St. Petersburg, FL
    2007 Sea Ray 320DA
    Twin V-drive 5.7L 350 Horizon
    I was referring to the trailer tires only, in my case, trailer literally said nothing. For the vehicle, that is my understanding as well.
     
    wyrman likes this.
  17. Leardriver

    Leardriver Member

    168
    May 24, 2016
    Denver, CO
    2004 270 Sundeck 8.1 Bravo III
    5.0, 5.7, 6.2 8.1 Bravo III over the years
    You are more likely to have tire problems than any other issues, by a factor of 100-1.
    I always carry a floor jack in the bed of a truck. Your SUV makes that a little more of a pain, but when, not if, you need to jack something up, they are great. Break bar, 3-5 inch extension, lug nut sockets.
     

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