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Old 05-18-2013, 02:53 PM   #1
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A CAT Tale ... WDH setup.

Hi,

I have read a lot about WDH and setup on these forums. Great info!

I took the Suburban and Flagstaff 23FBS to the CAT scale on our first trip with it. Transmission oil cooler added to TV and tires, breaks, and bearings checked on TT.

Numbers from CAT scale - 3 passes:

Truck no trailer: Steer - 3219 Drive - 3263 Total - 6482

Truck, trailer WDH bars on: Steer - 3329 Drive - 3704 Trailer - 4564 Total - 11596

Truck, trailer WDH bars off:. Steer - 2800 Drive - 6945 Trailer - 1852 Total - 11596

The grey and black tanks were 1/3 full with water. They are right on the back frame. Fresh water is empty (it's in the front storage duh).

So I sit in the Renfrew KOA and look at the last set of drive axle and trailer weights with suspicion. This would seem to indicate a TW of 3263 lbs!!

The truck definitely squats but its very driveable without the WDH bars connected. Anyone suggest why? I will be seeing the CAT on the way home it seems.

Fender wheel wells: 35 1/2 F 37 1/2 R truck alone (w hitch and bars on)

35 3/4 F 36 3/4 R truck and trailer with WDH bars on. May be a tad high on the front?

The Husky round bar hitch is on 6 links from bar. I added washers to the tilt pin, now has 8 washers. It was with the trailer used so it was not set for my TV.

TV GCVW - 14000 GVWR - 7400 GAWF 3600 GAWR 4200 Tow Rating 7900

Hope this is enough info for some insight. I'm confused by the drive axle weight of 6945 lbs with WDH bars off.

Have a great weekend (it's a long w/e in Canada).

Bryan
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Old 05-18-2013, 03:05 PM   #2
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Ya that caught my eye right away also. That can't be right I would say your tongue would be more closer to 500-700 pounds. Something wasn't being weighed correctly.
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Old 05-20-2013, 11:31 PM   #3
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Yes I think the front axle of the trailer was on first pad of the CAT scale, so the trailer axle weight was for only the back tandem axle with the WDH bars off.

Reweigh at CAT scale on the way home today:

Truck, trailer WDH bars on: Steer - 3307 Drive - 3748 Trailer - 4475 Total - 11530

Truck, trailer WDH bars off: Steer - 2756 Drive - 4497 Trailer - 4255 Total - 11508

The WDH does a necessary job of unloading the drive axle so its under the GAWR. I had empty grey, black, and fresh water tanks on the way back so the TW was likely a bit higher than before.

Using the original Gross VW TW= 771 lbs (2756+4490-6482) or 15% I think. Please let me know if my math is off.

The SUV and trailer rides well at 100 km/h (Canadian mph) and I was getting about 12-13 mpg.

Bryan
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Old 05-23-2013, 04:06 PM   #4
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It appears your WDH is doing a good job of moving weight to the steer axle (550 lbs!!) and to the trailer itself (220 lbs). And without you would clearly be way over your RAWR.

What looks strange to me is that with a total trailer weight around 5100 pounds you are able to load 1200 pounds on your rear axle without WDH.

It still looks like your trailer is really tongue heavy.
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Old 05-23-2013, 07:07 PM   #5
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Thanks, I was suspicious of that but the truck and trailer are level with WDH bars on, and only dipped slightly with them off. There is not much in the trailer or truck right now either. It tows well too. I really wonder about the CAT scale. There is an unattended truck weigh scale in Perth not too far from me that I used with the popup, maybe I will make a trek there and actually measure the axles and TW separately.

After towing a Coleman Sunridge popup for 10 years, the TT and WDH is all new to me so I have no reference other than the good info posted here and this CAT data.

Thanks again,

Bryan
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Old 06-10-2013, 11:12 PM   #6
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Went to a Government weigh scale and was able to disconnect the TT on the scale. The TW was 945 pounds! Not a lot in the trailer but the propane, battery, wood and beer were in front of the trailer axles. The fold up queen bed and jack knife sofa are in front of the axle as well.

I contacted the Forest River product manager for that model and he said it is higher than expected depending on how it is loaded, and recommended moving weight to the rear. I have 6600 GVWR on the TT, so at an actual weight of 5100 pounds I can move stuff from the TV to the trailer and to the rear inside the trailer.

It makes a huge difference in towing comfort depending on how well the WDH is set up. I tried a couple of options:

WDH bars on....7 links....6 links
Steer..............3152......3307
Drive...............3968......3748
Trailer.............4453......4497

GCVW 11574 pounds

With 6 links on the WHD chain, towing is quite good and easy up to 100 km/h. Good wind tolerance, and it was windy that day. Using 7 links not good with wind tolerance and feels sluggish to pull. Did I say it was real windy that day...

I'll load some heavier stuff in the back and maybe put some water in the tanks which are right at the back bumper of the TT for the big trip in July to get the TW a little lower.

As other posts mention, not a lot of margin with a 1500 truck/SUV on cargo capacity or GAWR Rear.
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Old 06-11-2013, 09:44 AM   #7
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I'm glad to see you are cranking that WDH to get back to stock front loading...actually 100 lbs more! So many OEMs these days are recommending that people set their WDH to have the front height come only halfway back down to stock height, which is silly. You want stock loading or more.

That's why it feels better. If you have the capacity (and with 3600 lbs front GAWR, you do!), then you want to take advantage of it. Some would say that larger trucks should go for what's called "equal compression" That is, compariing to the loads without the trailer, the front suspension is compressed about the same as the rear.
For you (6 links versus no trailer):
Front compression = 3307-3219 = 88 lbs
Rear compression = 3748-3263 = 485 lbs
You would have to crank a lot more to get those numbers equal, and probably to no benefit. You still seem to have rear axle capacity, unless these numbers do not include a bunch of stuff/people you want to put in the back of the Burb.
I would leave it at 6 links and be happy. If you need more capacity for cargo in the Burb, crank it to 5 links. You may have to drop the head if it get's tongue high.
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Old 06-11-2013, 12:42 PM   #8
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Thanks for your feedback brakeman!

I am glad I seem to be on the right track and now know I have a trailer loading puzzle to deal with for the TW, after taking some weights.

Usually it will be a load as described with my wife and I so there is still some margin. I have 3 teenage kids that are adult size, so if we all travel in the Burb I will likely need to use 5 links and spread more stuff in to the trailer.

I can deal with the towing math and the manufacturer specification vs. safety margin equation. Thanks for the practical help folks.
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