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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > Reese Sway Control Bar

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Huntindog

Phoenix AZ

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Posted: 10/08/19 01:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

it hs been amhile since I used one, but I do remember the instructions stating that if the steering wheell did not retrn to center unassisted after a turn that it was too tight.
The adjustment is NOT the handle. The bolt is.



Huntindog
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1968mooney

Fl.

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Posted: 10/08/19 05:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lynnmor wrote:

camperforlife wrote:

I had two on a 26' trailer for years. Tighten it down tight and back off until the handle is parallel to the bar. If you tighten it too much during a sharp turn you will either bend the bar or break the little ball off or both.


The handle is NOT the adjustment, read the directions.


Please post the directions you are referring too. Otherwise, I take the direction posted by others as correct.

BarneyS

S.E. Lower Michigan

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Posted: 10/08/19 08:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lynnmor is correct.
Here are the installation instructions from the DrawTite hitch manufacturer. The other manufacturers have the same instructions.
Sway bar installation install and adjustment.

Notice that statement 3 in the beginning states:
"3. The handle (5) is an on/off device. The bolt (7) below is for adjustment only."


Notice that in the "Hook Up" section "b" it states:
b. "Retighten handle until it stops (handle should be in its original level position)."
This means tighten the handle all the way and then back it off to a position parallel to the trailers A frame.

Then is section 3 "Adjustment" it states:
"To get maximum benefits from the sway control assembly, a series of road tests should be taken with
the loaded trailer. On subsequent trips increase or decrease tension by turning the adjusting bolt (7) in 1/4 turn increments in
the direction shown on the label until the desired control is achieved. For large trailers, it may be necessary to install a second
sway control unit."

This adjustment is done by turning the small bolt located below the handle in small amounts and road testing in between adjustments. By large trailers they are talking about those longer than 26 feet according to other manufacturers instructions.

The thing to remember is that the long handle is an "On/Off" device and not an adjustment device. By doing it the proper way, you will always be able to put the same amount of sway control on and not be guessing whether you turned the handle hard enough.
Hope this helps.[emoticon]
Barney


2004 Sunnybrook Titan 30FKS TT
Hensley "Arrow" 1400# hitch (Sold)
2019 Ram Limited 1500, 5.7L Hemi, 4x4, SB
Not towing now.
Former tow vehicles were 2016 Ram 2500 CTD, 2002 Ford F250, 7.3 PSD


Lynnmor

Red Lion

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Posted: 10/08/19 08:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Huntindog wrote:

it hs been amhile since I used one, but I do remember the instructions stating that if the steering wheell did not retrn to center unassisted after a turn that it was too tight.
The adjustment is NOT the handle. The bolt is.


Correct, but the steering wheel test is highly variable depending on trailer length, truck size, etc. What I do is find a straight road without traffic and do a quick input on the steering wheel to get the trailer to swing out a bit while watching for excess over-travel, then tighten the bolt a bit and retest. There will always be some over-travel due to play in the suspension and tires.

Since there is both a bolt and a handle, that is way too much for some to comprehend. The handle only needs to be tightened enough so that it doesn't move, that could be done with one finger. I doubt that there are many that are adjusted and used correctly.





atrerice

Michigan

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Posted: 10/08/19 08:43pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for all the great advice! I just got back today and the swaybar worked great to stabilize the trailer. I backed off the adjustment nut a quarter turn from where it was set from the factory and used the "on/off" handle as directed in the instructions by tightening it down but leaving it parallel to the bar. No sway at all at any speed. I'm sure it helped that it was pretty stable to begin with, but there would be noticable sway in high winds and when passing semi trucks. No issues any more with that.

profdant139

Southern California

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Posted: 10/09/19 02:50am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You probably already know this, but proper loading of the trailer is also important to minimize sway. Adequate tongue weight, plus make sure there is more weight in front of the trailer's wheels than behind them.

I have towed over a hundred thousand miles (!) with just a sway bar -- works great on a smaller trailer like mine. For a big trailer, a weight distribution hitch works better, or so they say.


2012 Fun Finder X-139 "Boondock Style" (axle-flipped and extra insulation)
2013 Toyota Tacoma Off-Road (semi-beefy tires and components)
Our trips -- pix and text
About our trailer
"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single list."


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