increase ground clearance on ShorLander trailer

TinBoats.net

Help Support TinBoats.net:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.

SAABologist

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 28, 2022
Messages
51
Reaction score
8
Location
College Station, Texas
Hi Folks, I have a ShorLander trailer for my 16' Mirrocraft Outfitter. I bought it a couple of months ago and the tires are worn out and old and the rims are rusty. So instead of keeping it the same, I would like to increase the ground clearance for off-roading, even if it makes launching a little more difficult.

I am going to use the trailer on rough roads and dirt roads and would like to upgrade this trailer for better ground clearance.

The trailer has 13" tires now.
The springs are on top of the axle.

I have some 17" wheels that match my Suburban but I don't know if it would be a good idea to get hubs for those big wheels on this boat trailer.

Anyway, thanks in advance for any advice based on experience in lifting a boat trailer for off-road use.
 
Bigger wheels and tires is the best way IMO for an offroad trailer. A 15-16" wheel with tires that have a big, cushy sidewall. It'll ride much better and also raise the trailer, two birds.

You will likely need to make changes to the fenders, and you'll need to pay attention to wheel offset so they don't rub the trailer frame.
 
I have a set of 25" atv tires on 12" trailer rims.. when I go off road, I swap the tires over.. rides like a dream.

Sent from my SM-A526W using Tapatalk

 
Just find a larger dia rim that fits the hole pattern on your hubs. Mabey even automotive wheels, many compact vehicles use the similiar bolt patterns. Once you find wheels, just go with bigger dia tires.
 
I raised a trailer by flipping the axle to the under side of the springs. I put Jeep factory wheels on it and had to widen the axle. Cut the axle in half and sleeve it. Easy fix
 
Wirenut, Ldubs, he says the springs are already on top of the axle, so it's as high as it can get in it's current configuration.
The easiest is what has already been mentioned......taller rims and tires.
You could go with riser blocks between the springs and axle, but that raises the frame, and not the axle. If you're looking for more ground clearance, that doesn't gain you anything.
Airshot offered the best, first approach. There's charts out there that use a bolt pattern search to help find different sized rims, and the cars they go to. After that, it's just a matter of hitting up your local salvage yards.

Roger
 
Keep in mind the OP hasn't chimed in to say how much clearance is needed. The average pickup only has about 10" at the rear diff, so the trailer doesn't need more than that.. my ATV tires give me 12" at the axle. I've never snagged the axle on any trail the trailer can fit down.

Sent from my SM-A526W using Tapatalk

 
Gypsy; As an aside, what speed do you tow your trail tires at? I seem to recall reading somewhere that they're not engineered for highway speeds, and as such, I can't help questioning the wisdom of them if one needs to do 60+mph.

Roger
 
GTS225 said:
Gypsy; As an aside, what speed do you tow your trail tires at? I seem to recall reading somewhere that they're not engineered for highway speeds, and as such, I can't help questioning the wisdom of them if one needs to do 60+mph.

Roger
I've done up to 30mph with the ATV tires.. I have a fishing destination that is only accessible by ATV. So I drive with my truck to the unloading point. Once I unload the atv I switch the tires on the trailer, then hook the trailer to the atv. One could do the same scenario if going all the way in by truck, switch the tires once you get to a spot where you'd put the truck in 4x4, chances are your not doing more than 30mph after that point in the trip.

The ATV tires ride really good on the rough trails, soaking up rocks and roots rather than bouncing like a basketball like highway tires would.

I used 25x8x12 tires on 12" trailer rims ( my old stock front tires from the atv) and I raised my fenders up with brackets for the extra tire height. Keeping in mind the suspension travel as well

Sent from my SM-A526W using Tapatalk


 
Besides taller tires, the only way to gain ground clearance might be to run a drop axle flipped around if that's even possible. You would want a square tube drop axle so square u-bolts would stay in place tight so it couldn't try to rotate. Or if a round tube drop axle, you would need to weld on new spring mounts to run the axle up vs down. I still don't think I would take that chance especially if the road/trail is pretty rough.
 

Attachments

  • drop_axle.jpg
    drop_axle.jpg
    13.8 KB · Views: 79

Latest posts

Top