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Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > Turnbuckle ?

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billtex

RI

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Posted: 06/24/20 07:09pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have always been old school using TL original spring loads, turn buckles and chains. The camper tends to stay loaded on truck for months so the turnbuckles have never been an issue.
I do however have a full set of HJ original spring loads that I have never used. I dusted them off tonight as I was setting up the new truck. I have to be honest; I don’t see any advantage to these versus the chains/turnbuckles.
Seems to me these would be just as much work (rotating to achieve proper tension).

Am I missing something?

Who’s using HJ originals? Who’s using original TL’s?

Thx, Bill


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K Mac

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Posted: 06/24/20 07:31pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Once you set them, and set the o-ring, 9 outta 10 times there good to go for me. You mark them for position on truck, RF, RR, LF, LR. I remove my LF for easier fuel door access. Bigger door with DEF. I also put a few scratches in my old truck with the wrenches, fortunately it was silver so only I saw them.

billtex

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Posted: 06/24/20 08:09pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

K Mac wrote:

Once you set them, and set the o-ring, 9 outta 10 times there good to go for me. You mark them for position on truck, RF, RR, LF, LR. I remove my LF for easier fuel door access. Bigger door with DEF. I also put a few scratches in my old truck with the wrenches, fortunately it was silver so only I saw them.


I think what you are saying is you can get a consistent tensile force by returning to your mark each time you tighten them?
Consistency is maybe the one advantage I can see over turnbuckles/chains. But it looks like you will be “turning” just as much?

Is this correct?

Grit dog

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Posted: 06/25/20 09:48am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Congrats. You discovered that both are a turnbuckle of sorts.
What’s the question?


"Yes Sir, Oct 10 1888, Those poor school children froze to death in their tracks. They did not even find them until Spring. Especially hard hit were the ones who had to trek uphill to school both ways, with no shoes." -Bert A.

K Mac

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Posted: 06/27/20 07:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If I understand your analysis, no, quite the opposite, once you find your happy (tension) place, you then slide the o-ring to 1/4" below the housing, this will help you monitor how your positioned ,as opposed to how you were when you departed. It's real simple to hook the bottom in the tie-down & twist them. On my last trip a walk-by visual made me aware that TC shifted a bit, because one front o-ring was down 1/2". Couldn't tell by doing a front or back visual but a measurement confirmed it. We were traveling the hills and dales of routes 40 and 50 through OH., WV.,MD.,VA.,and the coast. Lots of 10-15 mph switchbacks so I was watching them pretty closely. Harder to keep an eye on stuff like that with the chains. 50, The Loneliest Road & 40, America's Main Street are just as beautiful as the Blue Ridge up in the mountains. Inspired me enough to plan a trip on my motorcycle this fall, if this Covid s_ _ t ever goes away, if not we'll carry our hotel. Hope this helps.

billtex

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Posted: 06/27/20 08:11pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

K Mac wrote:

If I understand your analysis, no, quite the opposite, once you find your happy (tension) place, you then slide the o-ring to 1/4" below the housing, this will help you monitor how your positioned ,as opposed to how you were when you departed. It's real simple to hook the bottom in the tie-down & twist them. On my last trip a walk-by visual made me aware that TC shifted a bit, because one front o-ring was down 1/2". Couldn't tell by doing a front or back visual but a measurement confirmed it. We were traveling the hills and dales of routes 40 and 50 through OH., WV.,MD.,VA.,and the coast. Lots of 10-15 mph switchbacks so I was watching them pretty closely. Harder to keep an eye on stuff like that with the chains. 50, The Loneliest Road & 40, America's Main Street are just as beautiful as the Blue Ridge up in the mountains. Inspired me enough to plan a trip on my motorcycle this fall, if this Covid s_ _ t ever goes away, if not we'll carry our hotel. Hope this helps.


Agreed. But it seems it will take just as many turns/“un-turns” to install or remove them?
IOW; I don’t see any less work with the HJ system.

mbloof

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Posted: 06/27/20 08:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've used both the HJ and TL 'twist to tighten' turnbuckles.

On the HJ it was turn until not loose and then with a finger nail, press against the housing and hook then turn until there was a 1/8" gap between your finger nail and the housing. (compress the spring)

On the TL there is a o-ring. When off/loose move the o-ring on the hook so that it is against the housing. Attach and turn until there is a 1/4" gap between the housing and the o-ring.

While I rarely (if ever) take my camper off my truck, it seems that ether system has a bunch of turning involved. I do find that the square housings on the TL are easier to tighen by hand and I'd always have to resort to using a wrench on the HJ ones.


- Mark0.

ticki2

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Posted: 06/28/20 05:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If convenience is your goal both HJ and TL can be retrofitted with their handles , quick loads and derringer respectively .


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jaycocreek

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Posted: 06/28/20 07:53am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

There has been a ton of mis-information here on how to use Happi-Jac turnbuckles correctly..

From the horses mouth:


For the front turnbuckles,You want to tighten the front turnbuckles until the slack or wiggle is out and the turnbuckle is snug. Put a mark on the hook opposite the threaded rod next to the barrel. Tighten the turnbuckle until a quarter to three-eighths of an inch of the hook is pulled out of the turnbuckle. This compresses the spring giving you about 300 pounds of pressure. Tighten the jam nut to keep it set.

For the rear turnbuckles, also tighten them until the slack or wiggle is out and then tighten the jam nuts to the bottom of the barrels. The purpose of the rear turnbuckles is to keep the camper from bouncing up and down. The side to side movement is controlled by the front turnbuckles.


I have never used the TL system but it sounds like the O-ring would be a small plus and they both seem to need the same twisting and turning unless you get the quick loads or derringer addon which I have been thinking of doing for mine...

It is time consuming if your in a hurry to twist and turn to have the 300# of pressure recommended.


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Grit dog

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Posted: 06/28/20 11:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mbloof wrote:

I've used both the HJ and TL 'twist to tighten' turnbuckles.
. I do find that the square housings on the TL are easier to tighen by hand and I'd always have to resort to using a wrench on the HJ ones.


- Mark0.


Mark, lube the threads and a toddler could turn them without a wrench.
Only time a wrench should be needed is if you're actually tightening the jam nuts. Which I only do if the camper is going to be on the truck for a while. Shorter trips, just hand snug the jam nuts too.

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