Trimaran Trailering Made Easy

Werner Stolz
Werner StolzCorsair Deutschland
Based in Germany, Mr Werner Stolz is hugely experienced trimaran sailor and has been a Corsair dealer since 1999. Mr Stolz is also a Harbeck Trailer dealer, and we estimate he has trailered Corsair trimarans over more than 50,000km in his career so far. Mr Stolz operates a successful trimaran sail training school offering elite trimaran sailing skills development and education on trailering.

Werner, thanks for your expert advice.  Let’s get straight to the point (and this is the one that we at Corsair are most interested in!):  Why are Corsairs the best trailering trimarans?

Number 1, it’s the legal trailering width – which is achieved by the folding system. Much is made of the weight, but the width is so crucial because it is a number which is not flexible across many countries.  The Corsair 970 is 2.55metres width on the trailer.  Right at the legal limit.  The new Corsair 880 will also be within that number.  Many people have been stopped by police on our roads and everything is a waste if you fall foul of those rules.

Number 2, the boat doesn’t become longer when folded.  This makes big difference for maeuverability, but it keeps the total towing package within the legal length.  Other brands might just stay within the width, but you can still have a big problem if you have an accident and your length was illegal.

Number 3, the weight of the boat + trailer is crucial.  I carefully consider the weight of the boat before suggesting which material the trailer is made from.  For a Corsair 970, an aluminium trailer is almost a must.  For the other models, depending on the specification, it might be steel.

Lifting a Corsair Folding Trimaran with a travellift

The wind is blowing you off the dock

How about the Spars?

Again as we said about the total length, it’s important to stay within that number – usually 19 metres total of car+trailer.   Remember that before buying a racing mast – or at least talk to us about it.  And don’t forget that keeping the mast light is also important.  You need to be able to handle it manually, and load it up high. However the boats come with a yoke and all necessary equipment to handle the mast – including raising it.

The length of the mast is a consideration for trailering, as is the overall length of car + trailer.

The wind is blowing you onto the dock

What car do you really need?

Clearly it’s up to you.  But up to the Corsair 28 and new 880 there are a number of family cars that can tow the package.  Consider the additional gear you’ll carry, and look to your car papers.  The total carrying load of car + trailer might also be printed inside your door.  And it will be different from country to country.  Finally, consider that 4-wheel-drive (4WD) is extremely helpful when departing the ramp (in retrieving your boat from the water).  It’s not such a bing concern for the actual driving part, unless the conditions demand extra grip for some reason.  But 4WD is very helpful indeed when driving up a slippery ramp with a heavily-laden boat on trailer behind.  As such the BMWX5 with X-Drive (shown below) and the Land Rover Discovery have been very attractive for Corsair owners.

Towing weight is critical – as is 4WD for larger models

Do you always launch in the water from the trailer?  Or do you often need a crane?

I prefer the ramp. But the boats are also prepared to lift from the trailer by crane or large forklift.  In that situation the boat should be lifted by lifting the main hull only – don’t wrap the straps around the floats.  I don’t like compressing boats regardless of the quality of the construction.  All of the trailers I provide are marinized and ready to launch boats in the water on the ramp.  We use a brake washing system, and stainless steel brake systems so they are well protected from the salt water.

Careful consideration should be paid to the trailer construction material and brakes

Are the trailers single axel or double axel?

We use single axel up to the Corsair 760, and any models above that size use a double axel. Again, it’s worth talking to us about this early on.

Why don’t you trailer the Corsair 37?

Even I don’t have the car, or rather truck, to pull this boat.  With a Corsair 37 I suggest you consider having a professional driver. The trailers for such a boat are expensive.  So unless you’re changing your cruising ground frequently, it sometimes makes better sense to have a professional driver.

How safe is trailering?

It comes down to how you load your boat on the trailer.  Always use CE certified straps.  You should spend time with us loading and unloading your boat when it is delivered, so you know exactly what to do.  This is a useful service we provide.  The AA has a lot of information about trailering.  If you have their breakdown service its worthwhile notifying them that you have a boat on trailer.

A big point is to know your maximum speed allowance in all of the countries you’re driving through – it will be different from country to country.

You also need to have the correct signal and break lights, and in Italy (where a lot of my boats go) you need a special plate with the load striping (a form of signal striping).  We’ll make sure you are prepared for such technicalities and are kept safe on the road as much as we can assist you.

Final point on safety – it’s important to know the weight at the point of the ball on the hitch.  That capacity varies from car to car, and it’s something that we will look at when we know which car and boat you have.

Anything you would like to add?

You didn’t ask me about the maximum height.  That’s important for obvious reasons.  For example, when entering a petrol station.  That’s a situation that’s all-too-often forgotten.  Know your height.  The Corsair 970 is 3.6 metres.  That’s too tall for the passenger train on the Eurotunnel for example.  You would have to take the cargo train (which is a common occurrence).  You really must just know your height.

Read more:

Corsair 880 Design News

Folding Corsair trimarans: Legendary ability, unbeatable reliability

6th Annual Trimaran Sailing Clinic with Corsair

By | 2022-05-13T14:45:04+07:00 September 6th, 2019|Blog, Corsair Dealers, Technical Articles, Uncategorized|Comments Off on Trimaran Trailering Made Easy