Dolly vs Beach Rollers in Pacific NW For Dory

Has anyone used beach rollers like this?

I'm noticing that the shorelines where I'll be in the NW are much more gradual and not as rocky as in Maine, so I'm thinking a pair of beach rollers would allow me to beach my dory almost wherever we go.  A dolly has merit for initial launch, but  I couldnt take a dolly with me in the boat as easily as I could rollers either as fenders on the outside for docks or on the inside for sailing...??

Thus the question if anyone has used the rollers (I see youtube videos using them but I'm wondering if anyone has personal experience with them?)

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RE: Dolly vs Beach Rollers in Pacific NW For Dory

I'm resurrecting this old thread in case anyone else might find my idea for beach rollers useful. I bought a 10' section of 4" black plastic corrugated drain pipe at Home Depot for about $7. I cut two chunks just the right length to fit between my forward thwarts (about 32" each). I then drilled a hole through one end of one roller and inserted a section of dowel about 12" long to keep it from rolling. (You can barely see the dowel in the bottom left roller.) 

If I want to pull my boat a long way up the beach, I can drop the rolling roller at the water line, lift the bow up onto it, and haul away. When I get far enough, I toos the non-rolling roller down below and let the nose of the boat drop down.

Alternatively, to keep the boat nearer the water's edge, I can start with the doweled roller at the water's edge. The boat still slides easily over the unmoving pipe until it's high enough to be out of the waves and the boat's weight tips the nose down onto the second roller.

As you can tell, the rollers store quite neatly and unobtrusively in the boat. The friction fit keeps them in place securely.


RE: Dolly vs Beach Rollers in Pacific NW For Dory

I've got the opportunity to keep my Peeler Skiff well up on a sandy and gravel beach, rather than trailer launching from a bad ramp.  Any feedback on beach rollers would be appreciated.  Right now it takes two people to trailer launch which limits my opportunities to use the boat.



RE: Dolly vs Beach Rollers in Pacific NW For Dory

I have beach cruised twice in Maine for a week each time and used fenders as my rollers, which allowed me to beach my NE Dory every night on mostly gravel beaches. 

They are these I think:|2276155|2276169|2276171&id=1110542

They strap into the bilge and fit fore and aft between the thwarts.  They also make comfy fore-and-aft seats for sailing, and also double as added flotation.   They are a bit pricey but they are tough, no problem running them over small cobbles and rocks. 

It does take two people to use them effectively as rollers - one to lift up an end of the boat while the other places the fender underneath.   Considering that the bottom of the NE dory is about 13 feet long, that means you can move the boat 26 feet with each roll.  

A loaded NE dory will be tough to move very far uphill even with rollers... we timed our landings to be closer to high tide than low.  Rolling the boat downhill to re-launch is easy. 

Not sure where you would put one of those big beach rollers inside the dory without it getting in the way and making your beautiful boat look like a Zodiac...


RE: Dolly vs Beach Rollers in Pacific NW For Dory


At the end of the season, my son and I rolled our Peeler out of the water and flipped it upside down in the back yard for the winter.  We went old school and used 3 sections of a round post that I had in the basement.  It worked well and we will reverse the process to launch in a little more than a month.  I dont think there is anyway that one person could do this alone.  In addition to the logistics of moving the rollers, the boat and motor weigh close to 450 pounds.


RE: Dolly vs Beach Rollers in Pacific NW For Dory

Jeff, thanks for your feedback.

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