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Need help with Cat Trax choice  Bottom

  • Maybe even want a Tiger Trax.

    I have a Prindle 18-2 that I hope to get in the water soon. Probably need the 8'6" model but not sure. Maybe with the wide hull cradles since I read a comment about problems staying on without them. Or even maybe want the Tiger Trax; but I have seen some folks say the rubber tires are better.

    Also wondering about what I will call setup. Any hints about finding the balance point easy and quick. In fact any hints at all welcome.

    Also read about making a DIY dolly but seems they are for folks with way more time than money. Not that I am adversed to DIY.
  • Yes, the P18-2 is the 8.6 model axle . You WILL want cradles to support the hulls. Ask any Hobie 16 sailor what a pain it is with just the padded round axle! Cradles are a must have so spend a little bit more for a lot less aggravation.

    Master UniRig Sailor
  • as xwguy said - the cradle upgrade is VERY useful

    you do not want the hard plastic wheels - they typically don't work so well on sand and i never see them being used with heavier beach cats

    "Recommended use would be on hard surfaces. Gravel, grass, or hard packed sand will offer support to allow for easy movement. Not recommended for softer environments."

    some tips:
    finding the balance is easy. just put the cat on the wheels and you will easily find it's center - i suggest you do this on grass at first - learn this spot well as it is easy to discover on land but tricky in the water. if you get it wrong you will be able to push the boat to the waters edge and then it will become a pita to handle (one end will be heavier)

    create or buy chocks to save your bottoms - i use a few pool noodles with line - but you can't just run a line through a noodle ... i can post pics if you want

    of course it's easier with 2 people but if you get the weight in the right spot .. 1 person can handle your p19 (i do my 5.5 and 6.0 solo at times). just remove everything you can (main, blocks, cooler, etc). I even take off rudders if i am exhausted and center boards if i had to (never have). also if solo ... and you have room on a beach .. don't go straight up the hill ... take long serpentine angles up the beach..

    If you are pushing the cat sterns first, tie the rope (from the wheels) around the side stay adjuster, if you are pushing bows first, loop the line around the front beam

    I would suggest you don’t let people put wheels under your boat for you unless you 100% trust them. If they do it wrong (push one side in too far) they will pop out on one side and you run a risk of damage to your boat (I Nice scratch at the least)

    as per making your own: it is possible but 99.999999% you will not build a better mousetrap and it will cost you plenty. these beach wheels are tough to beat, despite the cost
  • Use an 8-06 cat trax with standard cradles. I use them with my Prindle 19 and have no issues handling the boat singlehanded. On my local lake we have a short steep hill that is about 15 feet tall to go up and down, i switchback it in the middle to get up and dont have a problem. if shes having some difficulty ill actually trim in the main a bit and sail it up the hill.

    Captain Chris Holley
    Fulshear, TX
    '87 Prindle 19 "¡Hijole!"
    '74 sunfish "1fish"
  • Balance point is usually at the shrouds, or mid-dagger, depending on how the boat is loaded, and if she has water inside.

    +1 to sailing her up the beach, if no other options work. Better know how to put on the brakes.

    Prindle 18
  • Rubber tires are the best friend you have! The Tigers won't perform (terrible) as well as the rubber tires. Spend the extra $$ for them with cradles and life will be good!!!

    Master UniRig Sailor
  • QuoteIf you are pushing the cat sterns first, tie the rope (from the wheels) around the side stay adjuster, if you are pushing bows first, loop the line around the front beam

    I have two ropes at each side, a short and thin one with a plastic hook at the end, at the desired distance from the shroud. I first hook that one to the shroud adjuster and then tie the other one to the beam. My experience is that you often have to reverse direction and no matter how short the distance the wheels slide and the balance is lost. It’s probably not an issue with cradles.
  • another point, cat trax also last about 20 years...best to go with the rubber tires and cradles, along with the ropes tied tightly to the shroud or forward beam if you really don't want the wheels moving back on you.
  • I have gone cheap with the plastic tires and no cradles.. it was a huge hassle. If you are using them ONLY on soft sand with no rocks, the plastic work ok. One of the areas I sail is a rocky beach. Every rock stopped the wheels. I have a modified 18-2 and I use the soft wheels and cradles. I bring them to the shrouds and quickly lash each side to the shroud tang. Invest the money; it will make the sailing much better. Remember, if it is easy to sail, you will more likely use the boat more often.


    Prindle 18-2 Mod "FrankenKitty"
    Tornado Classic "Fast Furniture"
    Prindle 19 "Mr. Wiggly" - gone
    Nacra 5.8 "De ja vu"
    Nacra 5.0
    Nacra 5.8
    Tornadoes (Reg White)

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