Author Topic: Safe towing speeds  (Read 612 times)

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Offline Rokefin

Safe towing speeds
« on: October 20, 2017, 11:00:58 PM »
I was curious of your thoughts on safe towing speeds....I tow 123 miles one way on all my fishing trips, 2/3rds of this trip is freeway driving then becomes smaller roads.  Like most of us, I travel early mornings and late evenings and often drive 75 mph towing on the freeway when traffic allows. I am towing a 17 foot Chaser with a 1/2 ton truck, the tow is comfortable but wanted to ask what speeds you tow.

What speeds do you find acceptable?
Boatless
Gone - 1989 17ft Arima Sea Chaser 2010 115 Yamaha 1995 9.9 Yamaha kicker - Bodega mostly

Online Croaker Stroker

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2017, 11:07:42 PM »


Most boat trailer tires are only rated up to 65 mph.
1987 - 17' Sea Pacer - 2004 Evinrude 90 E-tec
15' Sea Sprinter - **SOLD**

"If a fish will, he will… if he won't, he won't… and that's about it… except… he may take this when he won't take that."

Offline mustang65fbk

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2017, 01:59:07 AM »
Like Croaker said it all depends on your trailer tires in terms of their rating, size and quantity. I’m guessing with a 17’ boat that you’ve got a single axle trailer? Are they little donut tires or regular sized vehicle tires? Check the speed rating, most tires will say like a 95v or close to it. I drove my 21’ sea ranger cross country 3k miles and did 75mph part of the way. As long as the tires are in decent shape and you don’t exceed their speed rating you should be fine. It also helps having a spare in worst case scenarios. Only 123 miles though? If you could somehow do 75mph the whole way, if my math is correct, it’d take you 98.4 minutes, or 1 hour and 38 minutes vs doing 65mph the whole way would take you 113.5 minutes, or 1 hour and 53 minutes? To me, going so short of a distance isn’t worth the rushing and possibly having a blowout or worse, especially when going 10mph slowed will only add 15 minutes to your trip. My advice is go 65mph, if your tires are rated that high and take it nice and easy.
2003 21' Sea Ranger Skip Top
2004 Honda 130hp 4 Stroke

Offline beancounter

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2017, 04:53:59 AM »
Just me but I only go 55 mph when towing. You can stop faster from that speed and problems with the road and trash in the road don't come at you as fast. Gives you more time to react/change lanes etc. Like others said most trailer tires are crap and are only rated for 65 in most cases. I like a little margin.

Offline Yachter Yat

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2017, 06:07:28 AM »
    I tow my 16SC with my 15 Toyota TRD access cab truck.   I usually run 55 to 60.  I find it a lot more enjoyable, and as Bean suggests, a much safer speed should you be faced with a sudden emergency.  Additionally, I stay down in 4th gear (out of overdrive) in order to prevent constant shifting. 

  I blew a tire this year coming down Rt. 93 from Lake Sunapee.  When I say "blew", I mean the tread of that tire opened-up like the ass of a cheap pair of pants on a fat man.  Luckily, at 55 mph, I didn't experience any sway or out-of-control movement of the trailer.  We came to a safe stop, changed it and we went on our way.  I sometimes wonder what would have happened at a much higher speed.  One thing's for sure;  I'd never want to do the test. 

Yat
Dear Arima:  Please "square-off" the Hunter transom.  Make it like my old 77 Silverline.  Thank you.  Oh yeah...please hurry; I'm getting old.

16 SC/Honda 60

Offline Peddler

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2017, 07:32:26 AM »
I tow my boat at the legal limit, but no faster than 60.  In Washington, Oregon, & California (& maybe others) the trailering speed limit is the "Truck" speed limit.


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Wishin' I was Fishin'

Online Fisherdv

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2017, 08:01:54 AM »
Here in California the towing speed limit is 55. I usually try to stay at 65 mph or under. I too have been in a hurry to get to the Fishing spot and have done 75, but I try to remind myself to slow it down.  At 55 mph that puts you in the slow lane and that’s where most of the pot holes are from all the heavy trucks. 55 in any other lane around here and you’ll get run over. Also depends on if you have trailer brakes or not. My 1500 GMC doesn’t have the best stopping ability while towing so I leave a good space cushion. :twocents:
« Last Edit: October 21, 2017, 08:04:59 AM by Fisherdv »
2018, Sea Chaser 16, Honda 60HP

Offline StreamFixer

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Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2017, 08:20:44 AM »
I usually travel at 62 --  trailering or not.  Just a speed I am comfortable with...

Probably from when that was all that my 1960 GMC V-6 would do... I spent a lot of years in that truck...

StreamFixer
'97 19SC w/ Salt Boss Top
'03 Yamaha 115 EFI
'05 Yamaha T8 Solas 4 blade prop

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Online Fisherdv

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2017, 09:20:58 AM »
Don’t forget to check your tire pressure before every trip
2018, Sea Chaser 16, Honda 60HP

Offline Rokefin

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #9 on: October 21, 2017, 10:35:14 AM »
Yes, check tire pressure and good to check torque on the lug nuts.
I have the single axle trailer and it did have 4-5 year old tires in good shape but one blew out recently when the owner of the boat used it recently. He put on some heavy duty tires so I'll check out their ratings.

I am usually pretty anxious to get to my destination, maybe I'll hold off on the coffee until I get there.
Boatless
Gone - 1989 17ft Arima Sea Chaser 2010 115 Yamaha 1995 9.9 Yamaha kicker - Bodega mostly

Online Fisherdv

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #10 on: October 21, 2017, 11:09:13 AM »
That’s my problem too, anxious and too much coffee! :hoboy:
2018, Sea Chaser 16, Honda 60HP

Offline Packman

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #11 on: October 21, 2017, 01:07:20 PM »
I always keep it at 55 or slower, driving a GMC Diesel pickup pulling a Sea Ranger 19.  55 mph is the legal limit when towing and I hate tickets.  But the main reason is that losing control at 55 is a whole lot easier to deal with than losing control at 65 or more.  If a problem occurs, be it a flat tire, a giant pothole or some idiot cutting you off, you will be in a much better position to safely handle it at 55.  As you all should know, things can go very bad in a split second.  Is getting another 10 minutes fishing time in worth flipping your boat onto the freeway?  If you doubt my word search around U-Tube for a while and you will see what I mean.
Sea Ranger 19, Mercury 115 4-stroke

Offline Threeweight

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2017, 01:10:12 PM »
Highway - 60-65, back roads 55.  I tow with a 1 ton diesel, but panic stops can still be hairy with 7500# of boat and trailer behind me and 1500# of camper in the bed.

I am always a little freaked out by the guys towing a 21' North River at 80 miles an hour behind a 1/2 ton or an SUV.  I don't want to be anywhere near them on the road.
Former Sea Chaser 17 owner
Wild Card, Hewescraft Ocean Pro 220, Honda 225 and 9.9

“Never turn your back on fear. It should always be in front of you, like a thing that might have to be killed.”
       --- Hunter S. Thompson

Online BruceL2_Fish

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #13 on: October 21, 2017, 03:41:20 PM »
Like 3wt, I tow with a 1 ton diesel.  I do not tow faster than 60 on freeways and slower on back roads.   When I tow with my 9 foot camper in the bed I am always looking to increase following distance.   It seems that folks always want to put themselves in the space I create but goes with the idea of safe towing.   I agree with 3wt, freaks me out seeing folks towing some pretty big boats with 1/2 tons or less and hauling down the road at 75.   Lots of weight in motion and more speed more inertia.   need lots of room to bleed off the energy to stop.
2012 Sea Ranger 19 (M. LaDeane)
Suzuki 115 Four Stroke
Honda 9.9 Kicker

Offline Wiley

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #14 on: October 21, 2017, 06:56:25 PM »
I was pretty proud of myself towing today.. 55 all the way.. my tow setup = 55 is good   :bigshock:
« Last Edit: October 21, 2017, 07:34:25 PM by Wiley »
86 c Dory 22’ new 90 hp etec (sold)
96 sea explorer 15'-11" new 90 etec named (wutz wuzn cuzn)
10' Don Hill Pram
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Offline Dhil12

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #15 on: October 21, 2017, 07:04:38 PM »
Being an old truck driver, don't tow at any speed faster than you can control if you have a blow out or some other problem. Have you ever experienced a blow out at speed? I have! You will need to change your underware if you dont know how to handle it.Your trailer will take up two lanes until you can slow it down. If you have trailer brakes will help. use them and not the tractor brakes. They will keep you in a straight line. I would buy at least 8 ply tires, preferably ten plies, and keep your speed to 60 mph. remember you have a top heavy load, Keep your speed at a point where you can correct and come to a stop in an emergency, and when pulling a trailer, always expect the worse so it doesnt surprise you.Speed means nothing if you don't get where you're going.  Be safe!
Darrell
2018 Sea Legend ht with bulkhead
2018 Yamaha 200
9.9 yamaha kicker

Offline Dhil12

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #16 on: October 21, 2017, 07:14:06 PM »
Bottom line, dont drive any faster than what you can stop with the traffic ahead of you, but no faster than 60
Darrell
2018 Sea Legend ht with bulkhead
2018 Yamaha 200
9.9 yamaha kicker

Online Fisherdv

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #17 on: October 21, 2017, 08:29:35 PM »
Just got back from a fishing trip. Kept it under 60 mph. Did an afternoon/evening trip so I already had my coffee way earlier! 
2018, Sea Chaser 16, Honda 60HP

Offline wedocq

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #18 on: October 22, 2017, 07:05:07 AM »
Being a professional driver, I got a different take. Yes, excessive speed while towing is not safe. But, I would counter "following distance" is equally, or even more important. Drivers today do not keep a safe following distance when they are not towing, but it's especially scary when you see them tailgating while towing. If you keep a healthy following distance, your chances of needing to romp on the brakes to stop are dramatically reduced. Our phrase is "stay back and see it all." Count it out the next time you are towing. A good following distance at freeway speeds while towing is 6-8 secs. I think the results may surprise you.
-Shawn
2002 21' Arima Sea Ranger HT  Suzuki DF175 4-stroke.
WEDOCQ= WE DO SEKIU! It pays homage to my Uncle Jay who died of cancer.

Online BruceL2_Fish

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #19 on: October 22, 2017, 08:14:34 AM »
 :yeahthat:
2012 Sea Ranger 19 (M. LaDeane)
Suzuki 115 Four Stroke
Honda 9.9 Kicker

Offline Rokefin

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #20 on: October 22, 2017, 01:16:05 PM »
Hey, I have been going too slow!!!   
These new American made Goodyear Endurance 8 ply load range D tires are speed rated for 87 mph :party: I could get there 10 minutes sooner.....

Kidding - but these new tires are supposed to be good. I need to transfer my salmon fishing patience to my driving.
Boatless
Gone - 1989 17ft Arima Sea Chaser 2010 115 Yamaha 1995 9.9 Yamaha kicker - Bodega mostly

Offline Dhil12

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #21 on: October 22, 2017, 04:19:58 PM »
Haha. You you need to speed up! Shawn is absolutely 100% correct. I touched/ hinted at following distance, but he nailed it. Following distance is everything, but also speed does matter. It's almost as though every 10 mph doubles the time to get whoaed down if you have a problem. Another point is to keep an eye on those behind you. You can spot an agressive driver and be ready before he is beside, or ahead of you.I really dont miss driving a truck pulling loads, especially with the drivers on the road today. I will also say give trucks alot of room. They will appreciate it.
Darrell
2018 Sea Legend ht with bulkhead
2018 Yamaha 200
9.9 yamaha kicker

Offline Fishin Machine

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #22 on: October 22, 2017, 08:31:12 PM »
55 mph, is the speed limit when towing in California, so I tow at 62 mph.

FM
DDT
2003 19' Sea Ranger

Offline Markshoreline

Re: Safe towing speeds
« Reply #23 on: October 22, 2017, 08:55:21 PM »
Beancounter has probably towed a trailer boat more miles than anyone on this forum.  He’s a steady driver and has no bad outcomes.  Slow and sure is the way to go!
2002 Sea Ranger HT 21, Yamaha 150, Yamaha 9.9