Coast Resorts Open Roads Forum: Towing: Curious if my setup is correct
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Open Roads Forum  >  Towing

 > Curious if my setup is correct

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ashnic

Fairborn, Ohio

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Posted: 04/19/14 03:46pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Well here goes. I decided today to get the camper out of storage, get the new campers tires installed and properly set up my weight distribution . Well the first 2 were not a problem but setting up the hitch was well......To start with I have a 26' 08 Aruba..7k with 680 TW. Pulling it with a 2012 2500HD. Have a Reese weight distribution. Now I have read the articles on how to set up a hitch and have set up 2 or 3 before w/o issue but this one I just cant seem to get right. One thing I didnt fully understand until now was how to measure to see if trailer was level before I would just use a level on the floor not measuring frame to ground clearance which is the correct way per my understanding. What I have ended up with today is the camper is about 3/4" lower in the front. If I go higher with ball I am 1.25" high in the front which is not the preferred set up you want. Also tilting the head did change this slightly but then getting the bars level was impossible which leads me to my next question, it says you should set up your wd bars to be parallel with the frame..is this before they are pulled up? As soon as I put any tension on them the ends bend up not being parallel with the frame any longer. Also with my truck the front end doesn't move up or down the rear dropped about one and a half inches with trailer on and no bars. With my weight distribution hooked up it raises the rear end up approximately 1/2 inch so some weight is being transfered to the front. Does it sound like I am overthinking this and set up prettyclose...[image]
Moderator edit to re-size picture to forum limit of 640px maximum width.

* This post was last edited 04/19/14 06:13pm by an administrator/moderator *   View edit history


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MM49

Brighton, MI, USA

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Posted: 04/19/14 04:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The conditions you describe are common with WDH on heavy trucks. You don't need very heavy bars at all. To optimize your setup you will need to let a significant amount of weight on the truck and the transfer a little to front axle and rear trailer. Go with the lightest bars you can find or no bars at all. You have more than enough truck.
MM49

sh410

Northwest

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Posted: 04/19/14 05:10pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

There is a Cat Scale within 12 miles of Fairborn. A Cat Scale are usually at a truck stop. Go in first and ask how to weight and that you want two weighings. Take a broom with you [emoticon]. You will see when you get there.

A Cat Scale has three different platforms to give you the weight of the front axle, rear axle, and the weight of the trailer axles.

First you weigh only the truck with a typical load in the back and passengers. You will get a slip with the weight of front and rear axles.

Then hook up the trailer with the WD bars and return to the scale and you get all of the above weights. The weighing will cost less than $15 for both weighings

The idea of the WD is return the front axle to its unhooked weight.

One of our RV Net experts explain how to set up a WD. You can read it here WD Setup. You can also PM the poster and he will help.

What weight are the bars specification

Looking at your picture, it appears that the front of the truck is high, indicating that your WD hitch is not transfering enough weight to the front axle. Not that your truck needs to be level. A trip to the Cat scale will tell you what you need to do.

What most of us do, is to raise the tongue attached to the truck to make it easier to hook up the spring bars. An electric jack makes it much easier to do this.


Good Luck and post back what info you get.





fla-gypsy

North Florida

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Posted: 04/19/14 05:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The tongue being slightly lower is ok and preferred to being high. Sounds like you are just about right. Don't sweat the bars not being parallel. Based on your comments and description I would say you are very close. If anything you may have too much tension on them. Give it a test pull and adjust as needed.


This member is not responsible for opinions that are inaccurate due to faulty information provided by the original poster. Use them at your own discretion.

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BarneyS

S.E. Lower Michigan

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Posted: 04/19/14 06:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You have a round bar hitch. The bars should be parallel to the frame after the chains are drawn up. That means they will be pointing down before you lift up on the chains. That adjustment is usually 5 links under tension with a 6 inch frame. You then adjust the weight distribution by changing the tilt on the hitch head.

The reason behind having the round bars parallel to the A frame is so the chains will move same amount forward or backward when turning and so the ends of the bars do not crash into the frame. If the bars are not parallel, you run the risk of the chains banging into the snap up brackets and either bending them, breaking them, or moving the brackets on the A frame. This is also the reason for the 5 links under tension minimum and having the chains vertical after drawing them up tight.

The "parallel to the A frame" requirement does not apply to the trunnion style bars as they are designed to slant downward, both before being drawn up and also a bit afterwards.
Barney


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ashnic

Fairborn, Ohio

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Posted: 04/19/14 07:46pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I should have mentioned the truck has been leveled..so any drop to the rear is slightly magnified over stock. Now with that said..I tried the same thing last fall with the stock suspension..had the exact same issue..could not raise or drop the front end at all with this camper..as MM49 stated maybe it's just my size truck and camper..680 Lbs of TW maybe not that much for that truck?

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