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 > How to avoid getting blown all over the road

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myredracer

No camping in the US now due to covid.

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Posted: 05/09/21 08:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Haven't been here ever since the border closure, but thought I would see what's up lately and saw this thread. Been meaning to post my thoughts on this subject for quite a while.

Ignoring what would happen if the wind is strong enough to tip the trailer over, here's a sketch showing what happens when there is a sudden sideways/lateral gust of wind. It's basic physics. For simplicity, assume the TT "box" is 30' long and that the centerline of the axles is 2/3 back from the front of the TT. When you get struck by a sudden strong gust of wind, the force against 1/3 of the TT sidewall behind the axles and the force against 1/3 of the TT sidewall ahead of the axles cancel each other out. What's left is the wind pushing against the most forward 1/3 (10') of the TT sidewall. Doesn't matter what speed you are travelling, the lateral force will be the same.

The sudden "punch" of wind then pushes the tongue laterally (sideways) against the hitch on the tow vehicle. That in turn wants to point the TV in a different direction. Result is, the driver then makes a steering correction to try going in a straight line down the road. Then the sudden gust of lateral wind stops (or reverses direction) and then the driver again makes a steering correction to maintain a straight line.

So if you are trying to drive on a stretch of road that is experiencing high lateral gusting wind, you are going to find it very difficult to maintain a straight line and could be dangerous. Slowing down substantially would be the first course of action.

To minimize the effect of gusting wind, you'd want to make the trailer and TV as least susceptible to lateral movement as possible by doing:

1 - have TT tires with higher load rating and inflate to max. side wall psi.
2 - install shocks on TT.
3 - use WDH with pro-active self-centering action like Reese DC and ensure it is properly adjusted.
4 - ensure TT is level to nose down and ensure WDH is properly adjusted to transfer sufficient weight back onto steer axle.
5 - have as much tongue weight as possible (up to 15% if TV can handle it.)
6 - install heavy duty shocks on TV.
7 - Use LT tires on TV with stiffer sidewalls (kevlar).
8 - inflate LT tires to max. psi on rear and say 70 psi on front.
9 - a 4x2 TV instead of 4x4 for lower center of gravity would help but just about all trucks now are 4x4.

I experienced high gusting side winds once on a trip on I-90 from Spokane to Seattle. Pretty dicey and it felt like driving on marbles, even at slow speed. Pulled over a rest stop and a truck driver said semis get blown over sometimes. Got to the destination CG and someone said even FWs have been known to get blown over there.

So we've done all of the above except we have the usual 4x4 truck. Have GY Endurance pumped up to 80 psi. Driving in strong side winds is WAY more stable now. At freeway speeds, tractor trailer units can pass all day long with no effect. It's as if I'm on rails now. If you get caught in severe winds, pull over somewhere and hope you don't get blown over. I don't know how well other WDHs like SwayPro and Equal-i-zer 4 point compare to a Reese DC but I would never give up ours for anything else. A longer wheelbase truck would help too like crew cab + long box.

Just my thoughts... I hope the border re-opens some day so we can back to regular camping in the US.

[image]

* This post was edited 05/09/21 09:05pm by myredracer *





Grit dog

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Posted: 05/10/21 12:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

^ So you stopped visiting this US based forum because the border was closed due to Covid? Lol

Some of your methodology is solid, but one thing not mentioned by you or anyone else, but something you said, “driver counter acts getting blown sideways...”

The absolute easiest way to minimize getting blown around, regardless of setup, is to let yourself get pushed around a little. Also helps from getting blown over.
I spose the reason people strive to make their trailers pull like nothing is there, is because they aren’t comfortable with this.
But it’s so much easier, if you aren’t driving in extremely tight quarters to chill out a little and don’t try to over correct getting pushed around a little.
Of course you have to trust your driving skills. And if not, keep fighting every little breeze.


2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29

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Posted: 05/10/21 02:45am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

myredracer wrote:

Haven't been here ever since the border closure, but thought I would see what's up lately and saw this thread. Been meaning to post my thoughts on this subject for quite a while.

Ignoring what would happen if the wind is strong enough to tip the trailer over, here's a sketch showing what happens when there is a sudden sideways/lateral gust of wind. It's basic physics. For simplicity, assume the TT "box" is 30' long and that the centerline of the axles is 2/3 back from the front of the TT. When you get struck by a sudden strong gust of wind, the force against 1/3 of the TT sidewall behind the axles and the force against 1/3 of the TT sidewall ahead of the axles cancel each other out. What's left is the wind pushing against the most forward 1/3 (10') of the TT sidewall. Doesn't matter what speed you are travelling, the lateral force will be the same.

The sudden "punch" of wind then pushes the tongue laterally (sideways) against the hitch on the tow vehicle. That in turn wants to point the TV in a different direction. Result is, the driver then makes a steering correction to try going in a straight line down the road. Then the sudden gust of lateral wind stops (or reverses direction) and then the driver again makes a steering correction to maintain a straight line.

So if you are trying to drive on a stretch of road that is experiencing high lateral gusting wind, you are going to find it very difficult to maintain a straight line and could be dangerous. Slowing down substantially would be the first course of action.

To minimize the effect of gusting wind, you'd want to make the trailer and TV as least susceptible to lateral movement as possible by doing:

1 - have TT tires with higher load rating and inflate to max. side wall psi.
2 - install shocks on TT.
3 - use WDH with pro-active self-centering action like Reese DC and ensure it is properly adjusted.
4 - ensure TT is level to nose down and ensure WDH is properly adjusted to transfer sufficient weight back onto steer axle.
5 - have as much tongue weight as possible (up to 15% if TV can handle it.)
6 - install heavy duty shocks on TV.
7 - Use LT tires on TV with stiffer sidewalls (kevlar).
8 - inflate LT tires to max. psi on rear and say 70 psi on front.
9 - a 4x2 TV instead of 4x4 for lower center of gravity would help but just about all trucks now are 4x4.

I experienced high gusting side winds once on a trip on I-90 from Spokane to Seattle. Pretty dicey and it felt like driving on marbles, even at slow speed. Pulled over a rest stop and a truck driver said semis get blown over sometimes. Got to the destination CG and someone said even FWs have been known to get blown over there.

So we've done all of the above except we have the usual 4x4 truck. Have GY Endurance pumped up to 80 psi. Driving in strong side winds is WAY more stable now. At freeway speeds, tractor trailer units can pass all day long with no effect. It's as if I'm on rails now. If you get caught in severe winds, pull over somewhere and hope you don't get blown over. I don't know how well other WDHs like SwayPro and Equal-i-zer 4 point compare to a Reese DC but I would never give up ours for anything else. A longer wheelbase truck would help too like crew cab + long box.

Just my thoughts... I hope the border re-opens some day so we can back to regular camping in the US.

[image]



Holy cow, if I have to go through all that to take a trip to the campground, count me out.

JRscooby

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Posted: 05/10/21 04:39am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

myredracer wrote:

Snip...

Just my thoughts... I hope the border re-opens some day so we can back to regular camping in the US.


I agree with most of what you say, but one bit is mis-leading;

Quote:

When you get struck by a sudden strong gust of wind, the force against 1/3 of the TT sidewall behind the axles and the force against 1/3 of the TT sidewall ahead of the axles cancel each other out.


They do cancel with regard to introducing sway, but there is still a large force trying move the rig sideways. Reducing the action at the hinge TV/TT likely will reduce the oversteer, but even if you lock it solid it will take input from the driver to stay between the ditches. The OP might need to adjust his expectations.

* This post was edited 05/10/21 01:01pm by an administrator/moderator *

Grit dog

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Posted: 05/10/21 04:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JRscooby wrote:

The OP might need to adjust his expectations.


Suppose it is fairly common with RVers as most don't have alot of experience towing?

You can tell by the ones who never really answer the questions about the conditions or symptoms, but just talk about how to to fix "it". Without being very specific what "it" is.
Or provide a basis for comparison.

Grit dog

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Posted: 05/10/21 04:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JRscooby wrote:

myredracer wrote:

Snip...

Just my thoughts... I hope the border re-opens some day so we can back to regular camping in the US.


I agree with most of what you say, but one bit is mis-leading;



He's from BC, eh!

mr_andyj

Georgia

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Posted: 05/10/21 07:37pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You did not say which Ram you have. Is it one of those dinky short wheelbase trucks with single cab and 5 foot bed, or is it a crew cab with an 8 foot bed?
Wheelbase makes a difference.
A long wheel base will make towing easier than with a short wheelbase.

I have doubt about what changing tires will do to combat wind.

If the wind blows against the side of your huge, yet fairly light-for-the-size trailer, then it is going to move.

The guy mentioned AirTabs, and that, or doing something to smooth out the airflow behind the trailer might be the biggest thing you can do to help. Think of those door flap things the big rigs have on some of their 53 foot trailers. That helps with mpg's but also with control as it smooths out the air flowing off the rear.
On my trailers I put all the roof junk at the front and nothing on the roof on the rear half as I want the air the have time to smooth out before dropping off the back. Every little bit helps.

JRscooby

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Posted: 05/11/21 04:25am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Grit dog wrote:

JRscooby wrote:

myredracer wrote:

Snip...

Just my thoughts... I hope the border re-opens some day so we can back to regular camping in the US.


I agree with most of what you say, but one bit is mis-leading;



He's from BC, eh!


LOL. I understand a lot of things change when you cross the border, but I don't think

"When you get struck by a sudden strong gust of wind, the force against 1/3 of the TT sidewall behind the axles and the force against 1/3 of the TT sidewall ahead of the axles cancel each other out."

would be true on either side of the border, when it comes to wind pushing a trailer around

Kavoom

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Posted: 05/11/21 06:04am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MyersAvionics wrote:

Hello All,

Curious on how I can avoid wind blowing the camper and my truck all over the place to the point of it being really annoying to drive and causing me to not even want to use it.

I have RAM 1500 with the 5.7 V8. It doesn't work too hard to pull my 29' toy hauler (7k lbs empty and ~8.5k with stuff loaded) at 65mph down the road. The problem comes in that even with slight side wind gusts I'm blown all over the place and I have to slow down to about 50mph to keep it drivable.

I have a BlueOx hitch with sway controls as well as the trailer friction sway control.

I have LT tires and after getting the weight distribution down pat, I have also installed airbags in the springs to keep the truck level. This helped, but I am still getting blown around the road.

I'm to the point of looking at a larger 2500 diesel RAM, or a full on drivable RV toyhauler, or just an RV that I would put a standard trail behind.

Before I go to these (expensive) extremes. Does anyone on here have any advice on something I could be missing?

Thank you,


Well, imho, I think Ram 1500 and 8.5K says it all... I have the same with a 10,500 max (yes, within capacity) at around 6500 loaded (5500 dry) and 800 wet tongue weight (27 feet 4 inches) and it seems to be a sweet spot. But you get a good wind gust and it lets you know in an unpleasant way... I have a Eastway E2 10K and it does a good job of allowing me to NOT lose control... Oh, I did get the after market airbags off Amazon installed for 280.00. They "damp" movement.

MyersAvionics

Iowa

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Posted: 05/11/21 06:38am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mr_andyj wrote:

You did not say which Ram you have. Is it one of those dinky short wheelbase trucks with single cab and 5 foot bed, or is it a crew cab with an 8 foot bed?
Wheelbase makes a difference.
A long wheel base will make towing easier than with a short wheelbase.

I have doubt about what changing tires will do to combat wind.

If the wind blows against the side of your huge, yet fairly light-for-the-size trailer, then it is going to move.

The guy mentioned AirTabs, and that, or doing something to smooth out the airflow behind the trailer might be the biggest thing you can do to help. Think of those door flap things the big rigs have on some of their 53 foot trailers. That helps with mpg's but also with control as it smooths out the air flowing off the rear.
On my trailers I put all the roof junk at the front and nothing on the roof on the rear half as I want the air the have time to smooth out before dropping off the back. Every little bit helps.


I have the quad cab with the 6'4" bed. Looking at all the options, the wife and I are going to spring for the ProPride 3P hitch. It's a good investment in the long run. It retains its value well and if I do go to a 2500 we'll transfer its use over to that.

I just need to determine the loaded tongue weight to determine which version to purchase. I'm thinking the 1000 or 1400. The toyhauler is just shy of 7k lbs dry. Add water, bikes, and materials and I'm easily 8k lbs.

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