HorseTrailer Wiring

I continue to be inundated with non-boat projects.  I am working furiously to knock out the super big project which must not be mentioned by name.  I also manage to slip in other projects as criticality rises based on deadlines and usage needs.  Here is an example:

The horse trailer is needed next weekend by Mrs. CapnRehab.  The lights were acting a little funky so I needed to test them.  Looking on the internet gave me the info I needed about the wiring harness. (Thank you http://www.etrailer.com)

7-Way Trailer Diagram

Now on to testing the trailer lights.  It actually turns out to be pretty simple.  All you is a 12 volt battery and a setup like this:

trailer light test kit

trailer light test kit

I got these parts at Autozone. (Sorry.  No matter what I do this picture comes out upside down.)

Test Kit Components

Test Kit Components

Notice these are of type “ATC”.  Don’t get a fuse holder of type ATM and fuses of type ATC.  It won’t work.  Who knew there were different types?

Here is the setup I used.

Test kit hooked up

Test kit hooked up

Connect the ground of the battery directly to the trailer, then use the fused wire to touch the trailer hookup connector leads one at a time.  I found out everything was fine except for the running lights.

So as I started working on it, I noticed this.  It’s very difficult for the lights to work if they’re not connected to anything.  Maybe that should have been the first thing to check.

Found the problem

Found the problem

Here are all the pieces laid out ready to go.  The old parts are on top.  Notice the old light housing has 1 big bolt holding it on.  The new has 2 tiny screws.  They just don’t make things like they used to.  (10 years ago).  The newlight is an LED .vs. the old light is a bulb, so I guess there are some improvements.

old parts/new parts

old parts/new parts

So I replaced two light housings and reconnected two other sets of broken wires.  All like new again.

The Two Best Days….

As the saying goes, …The two best days in a boat owner’s life are the day he gets the boat, and the day he gets rid of it.  Here you see a picture of two very happy boat owners.   CapnRehab on the left (getting a boat), and M on the right (getting rid of same boat).

Yes, we’re making my first purchase for the boat.  Yay West Marine stores for being everywhere!

Smiling Boat Owners

Smiling Boat Owners

M has struggled with the problem of owning a boat remotely.  Not having a place to work on it, and having a boat that needs serious repair do not go very well together.  He did what he could with the limited time he could get with the boat, but eventually you have to give up.

Here was my first view of the Catalina 22.

First View

First View

Doesn’t look too bad, till you get a closer look at what’s inside.  In the grand tradition of people giving me boats to work on, my first job is emptying them out.

Boat full of water

Boat full of water

With the boat tilted up like it is, all the water that leaked into is in the back.  Which is really great, because the wood inside doesn’t look like some of the other disaster boats I’ve owned.  The first thing to do was get a siphon going and get the water out.  IT TOOK 4 HOURS!

Draining Water

Draining Water

While we waited for the water to drain, we worked on the trailer wiring.  This was a temporary setup just to get me home.  Still didn’t work quite right.  Running lights and signals are fine, but when I step on the brakes, the lights go out.

Trailer Wiring

Trailer Wiring

It was about an hour drive home, with M following in the chase car.  It went just fine.

Boating Safety Class #5 – Trailering your boat

Last night it was back to the US Coast Guard Auxiliary for another rousing classroom session on boating safety.  I wasn’t all that interested, but still manage to pay attention.  A few things really caught my attention.

TRAILER CHAINS – exciting subject huh?  I have a question for you.  You’ve probablyseen trailer safety chains.  Is it important if they are cross hooked or not?

safety chain crossed

With a little bit of thought you can figure it out.  If they are crossed and the hitch comes off the ball, the hitch will fall down and be caught by the chains that are under it.   If they are not crossed, the hitch will fall straight to the pavement. ( I did not know this)

SAFETY TIP: Cross hook your trailer chains.

DRIVING YOUR BOAT ONTO YOUR TRAILER: You should not motor your boat onto your trailer.  The propeller kicks up sand and dirt at the end of the ramp and eventually if enough people do it will leave big holes at the end of the ramp.  This means someone backing a trailer down can have the wheels of the trailer drop into the holes and become stuck.  I had heard this before, but after class I was outside the building and watched someone at the ramp power their boat all the way on their trailer.  No concern for property or other people.  (or maybe they are ignorant and haven’t had a boating safety class)  Ugh.

LAUNCHING YOUR BOAT FROM THE TRAILER:  Make sure  you put the boaty thing in the water, not the cary thing.

trailer boat launch fail

trailer boat launch fail

 

MATCH THE BALL SIZE WITH THE HITCH SIZE:  A ball that is too small can come out of the socket.  This person is glad they matched the proper sized ball with the hitch.

trailer accident

trailer accident