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Old 06-06-2013, 07:15 PM   #1
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2013 Ram 2500 Diesel towing a TT

Need some advice on our new truck and a weight distribution hitch. We just took delivery of a brand new 2013 Ram 2500 Megacab w/Diesel. I also purchased a new weight distribution hitch and sway bar. Our travel trailer is 34.5 feet long and weighs in dry at 7300, dry hitch weight is 835. I figure the loaded weight of the trailer is around 8400 and hitch weight is about 950. I purchased 1400lb WD bars as we sometimes also carry two motorcycles in the bed of the truck.
I tried setting up the WD system last weekend and here is what happened. I ended up putting the WD hitch at the lowest setting on the shank. At this setting and the WD hitch set to zero degrees pitch angle the trailer is level and the truck is level. The truck went up one inch on the front bumper and down about three inches on the rear bumper. When I try to use the WD bars it raises the trailer tongue so it is no longer level. Once I set it up so the front and rear bumpers are within one inch of change the trailer is now nose high.
So is see two options; buy a new shank with a deeper connector to attach the WD hitch so I can drop the height of the ball OR and here is my question, dont use the WD bars at all. This is a 3/4 ton truck and in my opinion should be able to easily handle 1000 pounds of bumper weight. I do have sway control bar installed already and plan to add a left hand one when I can find one for sale. Does anyone have any experience (good or bad) towing a trailer of this size without using WD bars on a 3/4 ton truck?

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Old 06-06-2013, 07:32 PM   #2
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I had the same issue with my Mega Cab and a 30' enclosed race trailer with extra height. Due to the weight about 8500 loaded I wanted WD and sway control. I bought a longer shank and have a right side sway control.

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Old 06-06-2013, 08:07 PM   #3
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^x2. I have a Ford but with same issues. Bought another shank with more drop. Does the Dodge have a 2 1/2" receiver like the Ford Super Duty does? If so, see if they make the shank with a 2 1/2 insert. My shank is a 2" and I have to use a reducer which is a pita.
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Old 06-06-2013, 10:11 PM   #4
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I'd get the longet shank and run the W/D and sway bar. Did you set this up with the two motorcycles in the truck?

I'm not thinking that the 1400# bars would have any impact offsetting the weight of the MC's in the truck bed. I think you need to add Timbrens or airbags to have the truck sit properly before you add the camper's tongue weight.


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Old 06-06-2013, 11:44 PM   #5
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Yes you need to use wdh. Look on your hitch it will tell you how much weight is load bearing vs wdh. I'm betting load bearing to be 500 or 600 lbs, anything heavier is wdh territory. You need a longer drop shank to level things out. Also your tongue weight is likely higher than you are thinking. Typically ideal loaded tongue weight is 13-15% of the loaded tt weight. Taking a trip to the local truck scales will provide you a whole lot of info. Weigh your truck by itself with all people, pets and gear that you have in it when towing plus full tank of fuel. Have truck front and rear axles on separate pads to obtain individual weights of these and a total truck weight. Then weigh hooked to tt without wdh hooked up. Again have each truck axle on individual scale pad and have both tt axles on same pad. Finally reweigh the rig with wdh hooked up. This will show you how much you offload your front axle without wdh. It also allows you to more accurately dial in wdh. You want the front axle returned to as close to unloaded weight as possible without going heavier. Combine weights with measurements for a perfect setup. Oh and catscales typically charge $10-12 for initial weigh and then $1-2 for each additional weigh within 24 hrs at the same scale. Bring a long stick to reach the button and say private vehicle when asked for dot number.
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Old 06-12-2013, 03:41 PM   #6
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OK - one thing jumps out here - if you are measuring off the bumper you are not getting the right measurement., you should be measuring at the wheel well.

As to use WDH or not, check your owners manual but I want to say they recommend WDH if the tongue weight is over 750 pounds. But more importantly, I would not even think of doing it with the motorcycles in the back and no WDH. That is a lot of weight on that rear axle.

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Old 06-12-2013, 04:26 PM   #7
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I tow a 11k lb 30WRS Work and Play toy hauler trailer with a 2011 F250 crew cab 6.7 diesel, the F250 is rated at 14K towing. I use a 15K Reese W/D hitch with friction anti-sway bars. What really helped my towing setup was when I installed a set of Firestone air bags with a wireless remote. Now, I just raise and lower the truck to fine adjust the towing attitude between the truck and the trailer. (Min. air 5 lbs, max 100 psi) When hooking up the trailer I increase the air from 5 to 20 psi to level the trailer, while driving I might adjust up another 10 to 30 lbs of air raising the rear of the truck a 1/2-1 inch really helps reduce sway. Most of time I don't feel the need to use the friction W/D anti bars anymore since installing the airbags.
An added benefit, while standing at the hitch and having the ability to raise and lower the truck with the wireless remote really help in hooking and unhooking the trailer.
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Old 06-14-2013, 09:25 AM   #8
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To re iterate what what has already been said, yes you will need to go with the longer shank... This does seem odd to me as my 06' and my father's 12' sit at the same height and I didn't need a longer shank, but your trailer may sit lower... or different hitch... regardless deeper shank will correct the levelness of the trailer.

As far as leveling the truck as Jeeplj8 stated, you should be measuring from the top arc of the wheel wells. Also when you are saying you have the head set at 0 degrees that tells me you have little to no weight distribution going on... With my trailer at roughly 1000lbs of tongue weight I have 5 washers installed to create the pitch on the bars... not sure as to what hitch you are using as you never disclosed that.

You will want a fair amount of pressure on those bars as that is what is giving you the leverage to share the weight between all the axles.

What I would suggest doing is adjusting the hitch till you figure out the torsion on the bars you need to get the truck to sit level with the trailer and hitch installed and not worry about the trailer till you get the truck leveled. Once that is done, measure how high the coupler of the trailer needs to be and figure our just how long of a shank you will require and then adjust the head unit/ball to that height.

As far as the motorcycles in the bed of the truck, depending on the weight you may want to think differently... If they are fairly lightweight, which they must be if you can fit two in there... You may seriously want to consider a set of firestone ride rite air bags. I have installed a set on my father's 12' mega cab and they work wonders for him and his 5'er... Reason I would suggest them is as stated by Dave_Monica the weight being placed in the bed is NOT going to be dispersed by that hitch and all of that will be sitting primarily on the rear axle...

I'd definitely hit a scale with the trailer setup first and find out what you are capable of carrying weight wise in the bed of the truck after the camper is attached...


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