Colorado Fisherman Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
P I K E
Joined
·
10,114 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I've have 3 trailers to move around in a tight turning area in my yard and getting tired of maneuvering with the Jeep so I'm thinking about one of these to help the situation. Anybody have any experience with these and if so what do you think. Reviews for the most part are real good.

https://www.etrailer.com/Carts-and-Dollies/Trailer-Valet/TVXL2.html
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,722 Posts
I had a PowerCaster that I tried when I stored the boat at my folks garage. It seemed to work OK (not great) on level, paved surface. But in order to get the boat into the garage, I had to make a 90* turn, up a small hill, and on road base. It couldn't get traction, and was pretty much worthless.

So, if you are on concrete or asphalt, and flat, it might be worth a try. I think you would be better off putting a front hitch on the truck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
253 Posts
Hi Tony,

I purchased one after I bought my new boat in 2014. I have a tight 90-degree driveway on an incline to a 2-car garage. The garage has 2 doors with the clearance for the boat/trailer (Crestliner Fish Hawk 1650) being only about 3 inches on both sides. My previous boat was a little Skeeter SD 80 bass boat which was significantly lighter and narrower but the deep v probably weighs 1000 lbs. more in addition to the width challenges. My initial attempts to maneuver (walk) the boat out of the garage to the tow vehicle were awkward and a bit intimidating as the inertia of the boat on the incline of the driveway required much more strength and control. The trailer valet has a brake which greatly aids in control.

The valet has a mounting bracket which attaches to the trailer frame with 4 bolts and is removeable. If you are planning to use it interchangeably on 3 different trailers, you would need the same mounting brackets for all 3 trailers rather than bolting and unbolting the same bracket for use on each trailer. Otherwise, it would be less hassle to just continue to hook up to your jeep each time.

In use, the trailer valet does the job that it is designed to do but is not without limitations. Adjusting the height on the trailer valet can be a challenge due to space limitations from the boat. It has a steering lever which is also a brake control and which must be actively disengaged by holding it at any time that you want to move the trailer- so one hand is always required for that. Even if you are simply moving in a straight line with no steering required, when you let go of the lever, the brakes engage- although this can be a valuable safety feature.

With your other hand you move the trailer by cranking a removeable handle which has 2 options for torque and speed. Even when using the higher speed/lower torque option, the distance moved per crank of the handle is minimal. You end up bent over using both hands and some head banging into the boat and trolling motor is pretty much inevitable. (Due to the location of the factory winch on my trailer, the valet ended up under my Terrova.) This is a minor annoyance and can be dealt with but the position you are required to be in for moving and maneuvering the boat is awkward.

The valet mates to the mounting bracket using a pin so it's easily removeable and can be positioned up for travel using the same pin. I didn't want to leave it on the boat for travel because it could be easily stolen so I also left the original winch on my boat. After using the valet for a while, I decided that I could still manually control moving the boat from the garage to the trailer for hook up and haven’t used the valet much lately but will keep it as an alternative to muscle as the years roll by. Moving the boat from the garage to the vehicle has always been faster and easier than trying to hitch my vehicle to the trailer and jockeying it out of the garage that way. I still back the boat 90 degrees into the garage which is quite a challenge and that is evident from the dings incurred to my garage door during the learning process. Lots of forward and reverse adjustments during that procedure! I'm sure my neighbors enjoy my colorful cursing late at night!

I'm in Centennial near University and Arapahoe and, if you would like to check it out, send me a PM. Not sure how the trailer valet would work on non-paved surfaces. One last thing, mine was made during the Obama administration so you might not like it. >:D ;D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,878 Posts
Tony-I've struggled with this on my driveway also. I can back the trailer up til its next to the garage but then its a 90 degree turn to get the boat square with the garage door and I push the boat it. Fulton makes a two wheel 1600 lb jack with a grease fitting that looks like it would be much easier to push the boat. They're $180 at Bass Pro-bet you could get one cheaper somewhere else. I might get one just to ease the stain of pushing my boat into the garage. Course you have 3 boats so gets a little expensive if you're buying 3.
 

·
P I K E
Joined
·
10,114 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Great info guys, THX! Ryan, my back pad lot is a mixture of crushed concrete/gravel and it is compacted but the top is still loose. I had no problem with my old Jeep since it was stock with the stock size tires, my current Jeep I have 33x12.5 tires on it with a 5" lift and it doesn't handle as sharp as the last one. I looked at those PowerCasters and just a little to rich for my usage, would be easier but that's a lot of gear and lures I could buy with the extra cash. :biggrin1:

THX Ratt, the one I'm considering is the XL model with the ball hook up and the positrack drive on it. I looked at the one you have and yes I would have to get the extra frame brackets for the other trailer which is no problem but this one connects to the ball hitch and is a bit easier to steer plus is a bit heavier duty. The boat trailer is a straight shot to my boat garage so no real problem there, it's the snowmobile trailer and my new 14' enclosed trailer that it will be used on. I read reviews people use plywood on top of the gravel to smooth out the use with no problems. We'll see, I just found a new one on eBay for a lot cheaper than eTrailer so won't feel to bad if I don't like it.

Yeah Ed I saw those too but I'm trying to get away from pushing anything anymore. My helper/son moved to Texas so I can't call him for help anymore and my other son is never around much anymore. To many toys ='s more headaches but they're so much fun, guess just live with it!!! :biggrin1: :thumb:

I'll post a review of it when it gets here! THX again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,704 Posts
Instead of plywood check the rubber tire/wheels at Harbor Freight... mite be able to replace the stock wheels with a more gravel friendly set.
 

·
P I K E
Joined
·
10,114 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I thought of that also, they are in the process of bringing out a hard rubber tire that is more aggressive for them so if I need to I'll get a set of them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,704 Posts
Seems like I remember a similar post a long while back where someone mentioned a cleat/anchor point on the back wall of the garage to use as a place to hook a snatch block for winching the boat in. Maybe?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
253 Posts
I hadn't checked the website since I bought the unit that I have. Back then, there was no ball hitch option. That looks like a much better solution for you and I would have opted for the ball hitch dolly had it been available when I bought mine. The improved steering capability would be a big plus. If you have a cement/road base surface, I would think that it would work well for your applications.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,722 Posts
I'd be VERY skeptical of it working on crushed concrete/gravel.

I tried putting plywood down, and the PC just moved the plywood, not the boat.

To be fair, I was likely using it on a boat that is heavier than what you have. It was a 21' sterndrive that weighed around 4500 pounds, and had over 500 pounds of tongue weight.

I would try to buy somewhere that they would return it if it does not work.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
84 Posts
Pikester, not sure how much you're planning to spend but saw this unit that just happens to be on sale today. It may be more than you were planning to spend but resale at some point might make up for it and looks like this unit could definitely handle the job without question. Just thought I'd toss this out to you....: http://www.saferwholesale.com/Super-Duty-Powered-Motorized-Trailer-Dolly-12-000-p/gsi-12000lb-superduty-dolly.htm
Just seems that Trailer Valet you're looking at would be a PITA to use.
 

·
P I K E
Joined
·
10,114 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
THX bud, yeah a little to rich for what I'm looking for.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top