RV.Net Open Roads Forum: Towing: Dangerous sway-- should we give up? Get tent?

RV Blog

  |  

RV Sales

  |  

Campgrounds

  |  

RV Parks

  |  

RV Club

  |  

RV Buyers Guide

  |  

Roadside Assistance

  |  

Extended Service Plan

  |  

RV Travel Assistance

  |  

RV Credit Card

  |  

RV Loans

Open Roads Forum Already a member? Login here.   If not, Register Today!  |  Help

Newest  |  Active  |  Popular  |  RVing FAQ Forum Rules  |  Forum Posting Help and Support  |  Contact  

Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Towing

Open Roads Forum  >  Towing

 > Dangerous sway-- should we give up? Get tent?

This Topic Is Closed  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 4  
Prev  |  Next
Sponsored By:
Caddywhompus

Southeast WI

Senior Member

Joined: 06/27/2001

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 06/19/02 06:59am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I actually agree with Pulltoy on this one. I didn't mention the new hitch in the first reply because I figured you would be unwilling to scrap all that new equipment and get a completely new hitch.

Fact of the matter is this: The hitch the dealer sold you is a run-of-the-mill setup. Pretty normal for dealer to sell this setup. The problem is that it is not an appropriate hitch setup in your case. Sway control bars should not be used to stop sway, rather the rig should be stable without them. Sway bars should then be added as a precaution to prevent sway in an emergency. What I'm saying is that adding a second sway bar may be a typical response to your situation, but it is not the real correct answer.

The correct answer is to make the rig stable first. This can be done two ways. First, you can follow the advice of my first post and make sure everything is properly setup and weight is distributed as it should be. The second is to upgrade the hitch to a better model. If you are unwilling to take a loss on all the equipment you've purchased so far, then look at a Reese Dual Cam setup. They sell a kit that adapts to your current hitch for about $150. Since this is exactly the cost you quoted for a second sway bar, the cost to you would be far better spent here. The Reese Dual Cam system doesn't use friction sway bars. The sway control is built into the Weight Distribution system, and many people feel it does a wonderful job of controlling sway. You will still need to make sure the trailer is properly loaded with the correct amount of tongue weight, as the Reese Dual Cam will not work properly if the tongue weight isn't heavy enough.

The Reese Dual Cam is not as good as a Hensley or Pullrite hitch. However, it is far less expensive. The Hensley is close to $3000, and the Pullrite is around $2000. Most people find this amount of money intimidating, especially since you've just spent $600 on your current setup which you would have to ditch completely.

One more thing. After hearing that your water tank is in the rear, I STRONGLY recommend traveling with little or no water. A full water tank in the rear will take signifigant weight off the front of the trailer, and is most likely the cause of your balance issue. I would try traveling with an empty water tank once. I'll bet that improves the situation dramatically. I know what I speak of here, since my water tank is also in the rear of my trailer.

-Jim




  • '11 Ford Expedition XL 5.4L (Primary tow vehicle)
  • '04 Mercury Grand Marquis 4.6L (Backup tow vehicle
  • '04 Ford Freestar SES 3.9L (another Backup tow vehicle)
  • '97 Lincoln Mark VIII 32v 4.6L (another Backup tow vehicle)
  • '95 Ford Ranger XLT 4.0L (final Backup)


cindy h

CT

Full Member

Joined: 06/18/2002

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 06/19/02 07:13am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

thanks for all the advice. I'm going to see about upgrading the hitch, dumping the water, increasing tongue weight, tires, etc. (I did check, my tires are Ps). I don't have very much in the trailer at all, and what little I do have is stored "where it goes" (!), such as a little canned food and plastic ware in the kitchen area, so moving that to the front would not change things very much. How do people increase tongue weight if they don't tote much "stuff" around with them? Cinder blocks in the front storage bin?!?! Cindy

Later.... I spoke with my dealer, I'm trading in the Draw-tite system for a Reese Dual Cam. (In time for our trip to PA).I got a trade in on the Draw-tite and have to pay only slightly more for the Reese. I will also follow all of the other advice about tires, tongue weight, water tank, etc. Thanks for all the great info, I've learned so much here. --Cindy

*This Message was edited on 19-Jun-02 07:22 AM by cindy h*


*This Message was edited on 19-Jun-02 07:27 AM by cindy h*


*This Message was edited on 19-Jun-02 07:52 AM by cindy h*


Drbolasky

Weisenberg Township, PA

Senior Member

Joined: 04/20/2002

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 06/19/02 09:19am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I agree with the reply to your post on ditching the friction sway control and going to dual-cam...the money is about the same, but dual cam is much more effective. And we only travel with a little bit of water in the freshwater tank, for reasons already mentioned.

If the Hensley and Pull-Rite names are new to you, they are indeed the best you can get, but as already pointed out, expensive. The advantage to the Pull-Rite is that is costs less than the Hensley and is mechanically simpler. The Hensley costs probably double the price of the PR, but when you trade your tow vehicle you don't lose your expensive hitch; Hensley can supply whatever parts you need the match your new tow vehicle to your existing trailer.

I would be happy to provide insights if I can to your destinations in Pennsylvania. In fact we are headed to Groton/Mystic in a few days. Can your recommend any good campgrounds in the area?

Best of luck in your travels.



Doug, Linda, Audrey (USN) & Andrew
2008 Sequoia SR-5, 5.7 L, 2000 Coachmen Futura 2790TB Bunkhouse, Dexter E-Z Flex Suspension, Reese W.D. Hitch/Dual Cam Sway Control, Prodigy Brake Controller, McKesh Mirrors
">


lynngol

Lakeville, MN

Senior Member

Joined: 06/27/2001

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 06/19/02 10:10am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Cindy, I pull a 26' trailer with a Yukon. Last week I took my first trip with a Reese Dual Cam installed. It made a signigicant improvement because I no longer feel the bow wave of the semi's going past. I normally travel with all tanks empty because water is heavy and why pull all that dead weight around. I think you're on the right track.


Lynn G, the Ukrainian and Sasha the wonder dog as "the Beaver"
2002 Silverado Crewcab 2500HD Duramax + Sportsman 2604P

Caddywhompus

Southeast WI

Senior Member

Joined: 06/27/2001

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 06/19/02 01:48pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

That's a good dealer being that he let you trade in a hitch setup you had already used.

To answer your question about changing the tongue weight ratio: You have two ways to do this. One is by removing weight from the back, and the second is by adding weight to the front. I know that sounds easy, so here are some tips.

  1. Move the battery to the tongue (if it ain't already there)
  2. Make sure your propane tanks are full. You could also upgrade to larger sized tanks (#20 to #30 for example)
  3. If you carry bikes or other gear on a back bumper carrier, DON'T. Try to haul these items inside the trailer in the front area.
  4. As already mentioned, do not travel with water in the tank. Consider having the tank relocated under on of the front benches or something.


My guess is that making a few adjustments to the loading of the trailer, combined with the Dual Cam hitch, should solve your problem. Above and beyond all, make sure that the dealer sets up that new hitch properly! You should be able to tell right away now that you know what to look for. Make sure the truck in trailer are both level. Make sure the springs bars are taught and roughly parallel to the ground with a slight arch in them.

-Jim


JimG

Phoenix, AZ

Senior Member

Joined: 11/24/2001

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 06/19/02 05:33pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The best way to get a Hensley is used. If you are patient, you should be able to find one for $1200-$1500 on the used market. I have a 2000 Expedition, 4x4 5.4 v8. My trailer is a 2002 Sunnybrook 2406SL. I was all set to buy an Equal-i-zer hitch but I found a used Hensley for $1400. At $1,400 it was still more than I wanted to pay, but I decided to get it anyway. Just this past weekend, I installed the Hensley on my trailer and towed it @ 200 miles to a site we will keep it on for the summer. IMO, the Hensley was amazing. My Expedition was incredibly stable while towing. Semi’s flying by me on the highway were no issue at all. Another thing that impressed me with the Hensley is the control you have when swerving back and forth. On Saturday evening, after I finished installing the Hensley I did a test tow on a street behind my sub-division that has no traffic. At 30 mph I was swerving from one side of the road to the other to see if I could get the trailer to sway. I couldn’t get it to sway. I was impressed.

meriflower



Full Member

Joined: 05/16/2002

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 06/20/02 11:27am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Keep in mind though, for the Reese dual cam to work properly, the tongue weight has to be 400# or heavier. This was the word we got from Reese Tech support.

Nancy

Macgyver

BFE

New Member

Joined: 06/19/2002

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 06/20/02 05:15pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

used to be a forest river dealer . the shamrock is nortorious for this problem i have seen it several times . yes load the front of the trailer heavy , carry little or no water and make sure the tire pressures are all the same . increase the tension on the sway bar and you should be fine .

gotmudd

surprise az.

Full Member

Joined: 04/19/2002

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 06/20/02 07:42pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

What type of tires are on your truck?(LT or P rated)


Luis,
2000 ford f250 psd cc sb 200k+miles prodigy k&n 16k drawtite
2004 cherokee 285b
1970 gmc suburban 4x4
1971 chevy camper special
1969 chevy shortbed

Lauren

Sahuarita, AZ (or on the road!)

Senior Member

Joined: 05/31/2001

View Profile





Offline
Posted: 06/23/02 06:07pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Ya know, as you can see from my profile, I am on here quite a bit and have had quite a bit of experience - some good, some "learning".

I have seen a lot of posts.

This question / problem is valid indeed. And I cannot really add anything more myself.

I just want to compliment all the contributors - this may have been the most productive link I have seen yet. No one saying it has to be this way or that way; just giving good, sound informative advice.

My hat is off to all of you.

God bless.



*This Message was edited on 23-Jun-02 06:08 PM by Lauren*



Barbara-DW 55 years
Sadie-"Aussie" Terrier
06 Mobile Suites 32TK3
06 Chev 3500 4x4 Dmax
20 yrs PT RVing - 190 RV parks; some many times





This Topic Is Closed  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 4  
Prev  |  Next

Open Roads Forum  >  Towing

 > Dangerous sway-- should we give up? Get tent?
Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Towing


New posts No new posts
Closed, new posts Closed, no new posts
Moved, new posts Moved, no new posts

Adjust text size:




© 2021 CWI, Inc. © 2021 Good Sam Enterprises, LLC. All Rights Reserved.