Skerry on a Trailer

We're a rudder installation away from our completed Skerry and it is indeed a floating piece of furniture.  We hope to launch sometime soon, after a year in building  We purchased the recommended trailer for the Skerry from the recommended CLC vendor and have travelled locally with her in tow during the building process, before varnish and paint.  Now that she's complete we want to keep her pretty as a picture.  A friend has invited us to Barrington, RI for a few days of saiingl and he told us to bring the Skerry along too.  We'd love to but it's a long haul from here (lower Delaware) to there, probably 7 hours by car.  At this time, I'm reluctant to travel long distance without more experience.  Yet I hate to pass up the opportunity to sail her in Barrington.   Any advice on traveling that far with the Skerry on a trailer safely and without harm to her pristine finish?  Thanks!  Bob H.

4 replies:

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RE: Skerry on a Trailer


You could try wrapping it in a tarp. Or, you can return the trailer and buy one of those covered ones which completely encloses the boat, like the car show guys use.

Alternatively, take one of you car keys, scratch the bottom of the boat and get on with the sailing.

Seriously, you're at an important crossroads here. You need to decide if your project is a museum piece or a working sailboat. Once you make that decision, your course of action will be obvious. Just keep in mind that the hazards to the finish don't stop once you're off the trailer and "safely" in the water. I saw a brand new skerry lose a dime-sized chunk of paint off its bow at Okoumefest when it ran smack into a rock while trying to sail off a lee shore. If you use it as a boat, it will get dinged. But as the original builder, you can always fix it.

Good luck,



RE: Skerry on a Trailer

As usual, I have to agree with Laszlo. (I don't remember ever NOT agreeing with him)

A couple of weeks ago, I brought my Jimmy Skiff up to WoodenBoat in Brooklin ME for the annual Small Reach Regatta, and I did not have time to do the touch-up maintenance that I planned to do before going.  Needless to say, I had an absolutely fantastic time sailing with nearly 50 other small(ish) wooden boats and received a good number of compliments on my humble little skiff.  I also 'earned' a few new scrapes and scuffs from the rocks and barnacles of the Maine Coast. 

In the end, I was quite happy that I did not do the touch-ups ahead of time, and instead spent the limited free time I had, out sailing.  There will be time in the fall, when it starts getting too cold for sailing to do the maintenance.

One of the boats at this year's Mystic Ct Wooden Boat Show that got a great deal of attention was a very well used workboat that did not have a drop of varnish on it, and not much paint either from the looks of it in the pictures I saw.  Sailors appreciate a well used working vessel, as much, and often more than a 'yachty' showpiece that doesn't get in the water, or out of the harbour. 


RE: Skerry on a Trailer

Laszlo and Ron, thanks for your replies.  I kinda' figured I would get the responses I did.  I guess it's the pride that you feel after building your first wooden boat, knowing all the work that went into it, and wanting to keep it new.  And just like a new car, once you ding it the first time, the honeymoon is over.  In the end, y'all are right; it's meant to be well used.   The rudder is now installed and we're ready to go. Best,  Bob H 

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