Need to find a full width roller for my trailer

Ed Call

Well-Known Member
Hyde sells rollers that are a foot long for $13. Maybe I should stop tinkering and buy those. I might put some at the rear of the trailer on the ramp (that is folded inside the bed) and another set near the front of the ramp (middle of the trailer). That ought to work. A foot of contact is more than enough each side I think.
I built a drift boat trailer with a detachable above the fender raft rack consisting of two bunks that attach via stake pockets and are connected to each other by the roller. I used 2-3/8" Galv chainlink fence posts you can buy and Lowes for $18. I ordered 2 flanged bearings from McMaster Carr to fit the ends of the pipe than ran a 1/2" steel rod full length and through the attachment brackets. I can not think of any reason to have a padded roller if they are not being used as bunks. Hard rollers will roll easier and the bigger the diameter the less your cat will hang up on them. If they are being used as a bunk, I would concede that they should be soft. I have retro fitted two flatbed trailers that are being used for rafts with this same set up. It is very clean and doesn't look cobbled up like many of the retrofits that are seen at the boat ramps. If you are interested in pictures, I could get some loaded up.

Ed Call

Well-Known Member
Brian, email sent to them. That is excactly what I'm hoping to find.

Bullwhacker, I'd like to see photos for sure. If you are willing to post some I'd be very appreciative.

Alex MacDonald

that's His Lordship, to you.....
Ed, does West Marine have anything? I have to admit, the Clacka does great on the full-length roller; really easy on/off! I'd think your toon doesn't need full length since it doesn't have a pointy bow like a drift boat. That'd leave you a center strip for carrying other stuff, like one of the guys mentioned earlier.

Ed Call

Well-Known Member
Alex, I'll visit West Marine some evening this week after work. I've got a few messages out to the folks at some of the well known boat companies. I'm sure that a partial roller would be fine but I think the advantages to a full length roller is that it will allow my trailer to accomodate a drift boat, should I ever buy one, or should I decide to knock the snow off of yours and hold it hostage. It also gives a rear point that will allow items stored between the pontoons to have a rear stop point. I have a short list of places in and around Silverdale that I'll be checking out for rollers. Maybe the kayak rollers would work better if I mounted them to a rigid square beam as opposed to the underside of my ramp. We'll see how it all shakes out. I think Mr. Scoones will be working on his own cataraft build soon and I have to stay a step ahead of that guy!

Jim Wallace

Smells like low tide.
Thanks Jim. Radial ball bearings is a cool idea. I just went through the garage and shop and found some tubing options. Anyone out there using a tube over tube for a roller? If so, are you using metal over metal, PVC over metal? I found some metal that fits well inside some PVC and the two seem to roll nicely on one another. This surely would be an inexpensive option as I have all but bracket material in hand. Anyone using square metal bar inside round tubing? I saw a photo of a guy in the midwest using that method.
Ed, I used to have some custom bars that a commercial fisher friend gave to me. Unfortunately, they got sold with the truck they were on, since they were semi-permanently bolted to its canopy.
They were awesome. The bars were heavy gage stainless steel 1" round tubing covered with truck heater hose that fit loosely over the bars and rolled nicely. The heater hose was tough and also a bit "grippy". The bars didn't bend at all. Only problem was with both front and rear racks set up as rollers, i had to tie stuff down so it wouldn't roll.
I was pissed when i found out that the guy to whom I sold the truck eventually gave it to the auto wrecker with the racks still on it.


Active Member
Mumbles, it may be too late to be of any help but I just had a roller put on my pram Bearings cost $90 and it sure makes loading and unloading easy. Of course I didn't do it myself as I don't know jack about that kind of work. Helps to have mechanically minded friends. The roller is probably bigger that what was needed for my pram but it was what he had lying around. For a cat boat, I think two smaller rollers would be more than sufficient.

Ed Call

Well-Known Member
That looks great BDD, who made it for you? I broke down and got the parts to assemble two shallow V wide rollers (12") with mounting bases. I likely will put them on tomorrow while I'm not fishing on my day off.

Chris Scoones

Staff member
I think Mr. Scoones will be working on his own cataraft build soon and I have to stay a step ahead of that guy!
Oh come on Ed. I just got my tubes this week and haven't even a bit of the frame yet. A step ahead? Step? Buddy, you're tweaking the end result while I'm still breaking in Susie on the idea of a new toy and it's costs.

At least my "trailer" will be quite a bit easier to setup. Just going the route of truck bed crossbars mounted just over the bed. Keeping an eye on this roller discussion though, as at least my rear crossbar over the tailgate will need it.

Ed Call

Well-Known Member
Chris, I bet that truck bed top mount idea will be great. Roller on the back, guides on the sides and winch that bad boy right into place. I'm envious of that pontoon holding platform, dragging the utility trailer around is not too bad, but not as nice as the big boy rig you've got. Why not take Susie on a float this weekend? Row her around in comfort and style.

A rear solid bar with a shorter roller like the ones I just got might work out. I'll post some photos if I get them mounted and they look good. The non removable ramp on my trailer is really a PITA. Makes mounting much more challenging for sure.
Try angle iron inside PVC. Make the angle as wide as the sides of your trailer sides, make the PVC a little norrower than the angle, drill one hole in the angle and bolt to the side rail of the trailer. Two bolts and its on, two bolts and its off.
You have to have a simple mind to have simple solutions.
Yes,I do.

Ed Call

Well-Known Member
Fatguide, still one of the coolest avatars on the site. You should post more of your simple solutions so we get to see it more or contract your avatar out to me. That simple solution just might be something even I can pull off and I like the easy on, easy off option. Would you put two half peices of PVC so as to allow a mid span support beam? Thank you.