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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking to purchase a small skiff to tow behind my Frontier. My goal is to purchase a boat that I can use locally but also bring on road trips. I live in the northeast and would like to be able to bring it down to the cape, RI, CT, NY, up to the lakes in NH, etc. I like to fish and camp and would like to travel with the boat.

I've been doing some research and apparently towing is more complicated than I thought. Before I purchased my truck, I just assumed it was capable of towing a 19ft fiberglass boat. A lot threads that I've read though have stated that the Frontier isn't ideal for towing mid-sized boats.

I'm looking to get some perspective from people that have towed boats with the Frontier. What do you think is my best bet for size and weight?

I'm about to depart on a road trip to FL in mid January. I was hoping to purchase a boat and bring it down there with me. Originally, I was thinking about a 18-19ft fiberglass hull with an outboard, now I'm starting to think that I might opt for an aluminum instead.

Thoughts?
 

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I've towed a 21ft Seaswirl walkaround cuddy with a 175hp outboard on it from SW Rhode Island to Eastern Lake Ontario with no issues.. Used LOTS of gas, slowed a bit on the hills in western MA and some on the thruway in NY State, but no issues.

Msg me if you want to chat offline

Sean
 

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Size does not have to equate to weight.
My boat was only 18" in length but with a 8ft. beam.
It weighed close to 6000,lbs.I had it on a 7000 lb. trailer and it failed. Did major modifications to the trailer.
Also depends where you tow and the roads to get there.
No more boats but still tow.
 

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The last boat we had was a 21' monaro. Boat + trailer was around 5,000# and with mechanical drum brakes it did fine. Up/down hills was ok.
The present boat is a 2000 24' Trophy. Boat + trailer is around 6,000#empty and about 6,500# full tank (106US gal tank). The power is there, pulling it out and launching is no issue, but I wouldn't want to tow very far. Maybe if I had a sway bar (weight distribution) on the trailer I'm sure it would be fine.

The truck has plenty of power and braking is ok (I now have mechanical disk brakes on the trailer), I find the back end gets driven by the trailer on winding and or bumpy roads.
 

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If you plan on buying a boat and trailer from a boat dealer get them to let you try it first. Tow it around for an hour or so and see how it feels, how it stops, etc. If your truck is an automatic you might want to turn the O.D. off while towing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for all the responses.

I definitely plan to pick something up online not at a dealer. I'm mainly looking for an inexpensive skiff. Something that is low maintenance and easy to handle solo. Inshore and occasional freshwater use. I do plan to travel with it long distances. MA to FL. My biggest concern is finding something that won't be a major hassle or expense to tow.

I've looked at a bunch on craigslist. Most have come with trailers but none have come with brakes. How easy would it be to add brakes to an old trailer? Would it be easier to sell the old one and buy a better one?
 

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Look up brake kits, it's not that hard you just install the mechanicals then rewire including a brake control wire. You can do it if you're mechanically inclined.

Clint
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Look up brake kits, it's not that hard you just install the mechanicals then retire unclyding a brake control wire. You can do it if you're mechanically inclined.

Clint
Thanks, I'll look into those. I'm pretty good with mechanical stuff. I'm up to the challenge.

I'd feel a lot more confident with some extra brakes on the trailer.
 

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Aluminum boat would probably serve your purpose fine.
Towed a 16.5 Klamath all over Baja.
Off course your limited with a tin boat but for inshore and freshwater it will be fine.
I would not own a saltwater boat without a fish hold. My old boat's fish hold was huge.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Aluminum boat would probably serve your purpose fine.
Towed a 16.5 Klamath all over Baja.
Off course your limited with a tin boat but for inshore and freshwater it will be fine.
I would not own a saltwater boat without a fish hold. My old boat's fish hold was huge.
I'm considering an aluminum. There are a bunch of older fiberglass boats for about 1k more though. Been seeing a lot of 17-18ft CC makos for cheap. I like the style of the older ones. I plan to get a bigger boat in a few years.

I'm mainly looking for something that could go out a mile or two on a flat day. Easy to trailer.

The next one I see online, I'll ask about the total weight.
 

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You wouldn't believe how far we would take our tin boats out.Depends on the weather and your nautical skills.
250 lb.stripe marlin caught at Monsiret Island out of Loreto,Baja Sur.
Had a bunch of small yellowfin also.
Some of the places we towed to were nothing more than goat trails,some as fifty plus miles
The big boats were safer and more comfortable but could not get to those places.
 

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Two ropes around the fish. Rolled it over the funnel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
That must have been one hell of a fight. I bet that fish towed the boat around.

Something similar to that boat might work for me.

I was thinking about getting something like this: 1973-20' MAKO Center Console

This particular boat doesn't have a title so probably won't work for me but it looks like a really good deal.
 

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My friend Dane caught the fish. We were in another tin boat close by.They turned the boat perpendicular to the fishes run to have to drag the boat sideways.
 

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Depends on the 19' boat. Something light, it will tow just fine. Or a heavy monster of a boat will be too much. Find the specs on the boat and figure what it weighs. Add in a trailer, and the extra gear you need to go boating.
 
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