Submitted: 02-17-2012 by JLW
I bought the 78" version of this trailer from a local kayak shop in May of 2011 so I could avoid lifting boats onto the top of my camper and/or truck. I also bought the spare tire and wheel, the kickstand, and the tongue extension as one of my boats is 21'6" long and the spec says it can haul boats up to 22' with the tongue extension but only up to 17 feet without it. I usually just haul a single 17 footer but occasionally want to carry two boats and one or two bikes.
On a recent trip of about 600 miles round trip I noticed that the tongue was sagging and when I got home I took the tongue extension out as it was bent significantly. The tongue extension consists of a piece of square aluminum tubing that matches the trailer tongue and a piece of square steel tubing telescoped inside the aluminum. It is installed by sliding the steel tube into the tongue and putting 2 bolts through a pair of pre-drilled holes in the tongue and the steel tube. Assembly was very easy. It was the steel tube that was bent.
I contacted Yakima about a warranty claim on the tongue extension and they asked me to load the trailer as it was when the failure occurred and to weigh each wheel and the tongue to verify that I had loaded it within specs. I did so and found that it was within spec, sent them the info and my replacement extension was shipped to me. When the new extension arrived I felt that the new steel tube was heavier than the old one and measurements with a micrometer verified that the wall thickness of the new one is about 12% more than the old one. I'm guessing that the original extension was manufactured with a piece of material that was out of tolerance. Here's hoping the new one holds up better.
Overall I'm very pleased with the trailer and with Yakima - the trailer is easy to use and easy to store and seems like it should last a long time.