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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > Heavier Blue Ox load bars?

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plasticmaster

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Posted: 11/10/22 12:56pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The published tongue weight of my TT is 800#. This is the dry tongue weight and I'm sure when loaded for a trip I'm probably at least 1000# on tongue weight, maybe more. I plan to weigh it soon to know for sure. I have the 1000# bars with my Blue Ox sway pro hitch. On my previous truck I ran these bars with 3 and a half links showing under the latch and later went up 1 link to where 2 and a half links were showing. Now, on my new truck, with the same setup (2 and a half showing), I don't feel like I'm obtaining the proper load transfer to the front axle cause the front raises as compared to the unloaded condition. Also, I don't feel safe tightening another link. Is it time to switch to 1500# bars? Thanks.

Grit dog

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Posted: 11/10/22 01:31pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Does it drive bad, or do you just think it's bad how it looks?
Because the latter doesn't really matter, within reason.


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

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Posted: 11/10/22 04:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

plasticmaster wrote:

The published tongue weight of my TT is 800#. This is the dry tongue weight and I'm sure when loaded for a trip I'm probably at least 1000# on tongue weight, maybe more. I plan to weigh it soon to know for sure. I have the 1000# bars with my Blue Ox sway pro hitch. On my previous truck I ran these bars with 3 and a half links showing under the latch and later went up 1 link to where 2 and a half links were showing. Now, on my new truck, with the same setup (2 and a half showing), I don't feel like I'm obtaining the proper load transfer to the front axle cause the front raises as compared to the unloaded condition. Also, I don't feel safe tightening another link. Is it time to switch to 1500# bars? Thanks.


I'd get an accurate tongue weight then decide what bars are appropriate. Empty tongue weight is w/o batteries, empty propane tanks etc. which add almost directly to the tongue. My trailer had an empty tongue weight of 800 lbs, as I measaured it. with 4 GC2, filled propane, water and the trailer filled with our stuff tongue weight is 1450lbs

I suspect if your empty tongue weight is 800 lbs, you'll be in the 1200lb or more range once loaded.


2011 Keystone Outback 295RE
2004 14' bikehauler with full living quarters
2015.5 Denali 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison
2004.5 Silverado 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison passed on to our Son!


JBarca

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Posted: 11/10/22 08:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ktmrfs wrote:

plasticmaster wrote:

The published tongue weight of my TT is 800#. This is the dry tongue weight and I'm sure when loaded for a trip I'm probably at least 1000# on tongue weight, maybe more. I plan to weigh it soon to know for sure. I have the 1000# bars with my Blue Ox sway pro hitch. On my previous truck I ran these bars with 3 and a half links showing under the latch and later went up 1 link to where 2 and a half links were showing. Now, on my new truck, with the same setup (2 and a half showing), I don't feel like I'm obtaining the proper load transfer to the front axle cause the front raises as compared to the unloaded condition. Also, I don't feel safe tightening another link. Is it time to switch to 1500# bars? Thanks.


I'd get an accurate tongue weight then decide what bars are appropriate. Empty tongue weight is w/o batteries, empty propane tanks etc. which add almost directly to the tongue. My trailer had an empty tongue weight of 800 lbs, as I measaured it. with 4 GC2, filled propane, water and the trailer filled with our stuff tongue weight is 1450lbs

I suspect if your empty tongue weight is 800 lbs, you'll be in the 1200lb or more range once loaded.


Hi plasticmaster, this may help. You learn more working through your hitch setup when things don't fall in place by accident.

I will add one more thing to the good advise above by kmrfs. You said you changed trucks, that can be a big difference to a WD hitch and towing setup pending what the old truck was and now the new.

I would suggest you do this.

- Get an actual "loaded" TW and total gross weight of the camper.
- Based on the actual TW, if the TW is higher then the WD bar ratings, you have 2 choices,

1. Less cargo in the camper or less cargo up front, BUT, do not go below 12 to 15 % loaded TW per total loaded weight of the camper.

2. Get larger WD bars, BUT, there is another one of them, a BUT, check that the truck rear axle, and the truck receiver can handle the actual loaded tongue weight. Granted when you adjust the WD, the rear axle load will go down some, the bottom line, hitched with WD engaged, the rear axle and truck GVWR should not be exceeded.

If the truck rear axle or receiver cannot handle the loaded TW, then heavier WD bars is not a total fix.

After you determine the truck, the WD hitch can handle the weight within the ratings, then start over with the new truck are do a total reset of the WD on the truck. Changing trucks, again pending what the old was and the new, there can be large differences that require a total reset of the WD hitch.

As far as how heavy the TW will go up on a camper, floor plan plays a large roll in this and if you carry fresh water to camper and where your fresh tank is.

Like kmrfs's rear living camper, my rear living camper has a 950# empty weight, after I loaded it, I now have a 1,600# loaded TW on a 10,000# loaded camper, (16% loaded TW). Why did both of these campers go so high, well we all have our stuff we bring, but a large factor is where you can put it in a camper. The rear living camper has a nice big picture window in the back and a few swivel rocker chairs. Those nice swivel rocker chairs on the back wall does not offset much weight up front. The kitchen is over the axles, and in my case my fresh tank, the bath and the front bedroom has a lot of storage space. All that cargo space in front of the axles loads to the tongue with little storage behind the axles to offset it.

Not sure what your truck or camper layout is, they all load different. The only way to really know for sure, you have to weigh the total camper and get a tongue weight. Figure out what your loaded TW % per the gross loaded weight, target the 12 to 15% range for TW. 10% TW is the bottom limit, suggest not to be there as one trip with gear shift the wrong way and you can go under the 10%. In the end, the truck and hitch have to handle the TW. OR you adjust the camper weights, hitch or truck.

If you need more on how to sort this out, just ask. You are doing the right thing, you are trying to sort out the problem. Good for you!

Hope this helps

John


John & Cindy

2005 Ford F350 Super Duty, 4x4; 6.8L V10 with 4.10
CC, SB, Lariat & FX4 package
21,000 GCWR, 11,000 GVWR
Ford Tow Command
1,700# Reese HP hitch & HP Dual Cam
2 1/2" Towbeast Receiver

2004 Sunline Solaris T310SR
(I wish we were camping!)


ktmrfs

Portland, Oregon

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Posted: 11/10/22 09:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

To add to what John pointed out. When we got our trailer I had a 2004 CC SB 4x4 3/4 ton chevy duramax. In 2015 we bought a CC SB 4x4 3/4 ton GMC duramax. (son got the 2004). You'd think, piece of cake, just hook the trailer to the new truck, it's the same. NOT.

New truck and reciever was and inch or two higher than the 2004, along with slightly different suspension and springs and I ended up spending about a day just adjusting the reese DC to the new truck. Even after getting the ball where it needed to be I still needed to adjust the spring bar tension to get the truck front end where it needed to be.

ken56

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Posted: 11/11/22 12:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My trailer had a brochure tongue weight of 1280. When I purchased it I told the dealer to upgrade the hitch also....what did I get? Another hitch 10,000/1,000 rated but the Equal-I-Zer brand this time...I already had a 10K/1K hitch. It was adequate and I used it the whole first year BUT, it just felt 'wimpy'. The push-pull when trucks passed, the side winds pushing you around the road on windy days etc. I upgraded to a 14K/1,400 and it was a HUGE difference. Steady when trucks passed, the winds didn't push me around like before and the bumps in the road were smoothed out. Get the higher rated hitch.

CharlesinGA

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Posted: 11/12/22 09:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Read the Blue Ox instructions. It says, counting from the FREE END of the chain, put the ninth link in the slot in the chain tensioner. If necessary go to the 10th or 11th link. Thats it. If that is not enough, you need heavier bars.

Counting from the attached end of the chain tells me nothing, because that is not how Blue Ox counts the links. I marked my 9th link with a red marker, would have to go out to the trailer and see how many links are under that.

Charles


'03 Ram 2500 CTD, 5.9HO six speed std cab long bed Leer top and 2008 Bigfoot 25B21RB.. previously (both gone) 2008 Thor/Dutchman Freedom Spirit 180 & 2007 Winnebago View 23H Motorhome.

Mont G&J

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Posted: 11/12/22 10:59pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

To me, the most important thing is to have the tow vehicle set exactly the same when hitched or unhitched. At the center of the front wheel, I measured from the ground to the bottom of the fender opening before I hitched the trailer. When hitched, I adjusted the chain links to match the unhitched measured distance. My truck is happy that way, no squat in the rear, and the headlight alignment is good.
Mine turned out to be seven links from the open end.





valhalla360

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Posted: 11/13/22 01:06am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

To summarize the key points from the above:
- Go get it weighed so you aren't guessing.
- Go thru the hitch setup process because the truck may be a different height and have different springs, etc...
- But don't try to reduce the hitch weight. So long as the truck is within rating, a heavier hitch weight will tow better.
- How does it tow? If it tows comfortably, it's not squatting and the trailer is level, don't fix what ain't broke.


Tammy & Mike
Ford F250 V10
2021 Gray Wolf
Gemini Catamaran 34'
Full Time spliting time between boat and RV


canoe on top

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Posted: 11/13/22 11:42am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As John mentioned, check rear axle and receiver rating. You didn't mention what truck you have. Most class four receivers are rated at 1,000 with WD. Some, 1,200.YOu might be well over that and want to consider going to a class five receiver if your truck can handle it.

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