Broken trailer tongue!

During the last launch of the 2009 sailing season the tongue broke 85% free from the main frame. The pictures below show that only rust was holding the assembly together. I had thought I inspected the frame completely … guess not. I was VERY lucky that the frame didn’t fail when driving. I feel that Neptune was looking kindly over my shoulder as the frame came apart when slow backing the boat into the water.

big hole

Working with Zeigler’s Welding (Olympia, WA) I arranged for the trailer to be transported to their shop for repair. As the entire tongue needed to be replaced I had a foot of length added, was 5′ now 6′, for easier boat launching. The connection point between the tongue and frame was also reinforced with two ‘fillets’ and a topping plate.

new tongue

With the trailer repaired, OK … rebuilt, I retrieved SWEET PEA.

October is the the early part of the ‘wet season’ in Seattle. I waited three weeks for a three-day period of no rain. I sanded the new trailer tongue and applied Rustolium primer.


Jump ahead to February 2010. It is 70 degrees! I rush outside and sand and paint the trailer tongue with a finish coat. This three day spell of summer-like weather ends and Seattle returns to rain, rain and more rain.

painted tounge

In mid-April I attach a second set of yellow reflectors to the tongue. I also re-run the taillight wires as these were not well attached or organized after partial removal to repair the trailer.

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