Originally Posted by myredracer
Here are the numbers from the scale tickets. I made two passes with the truck and TT hooked up. The second one was after I increased the weight transfer to the front TV axle.
Truck only: steer axle - 4300 lbs, drive axle - 3480 lbs. Total = 7780 lbs.
First pass with TV + TT: steer axle - 4220 lbs, drive axle - 4260 lbs, trailer axle - 5840 lbs. Total = 14,320 lbs.
Second pass with TV + TT & after increasing WDH: steer axle - 4460 lbs, drive axle - 3880 lbs, trailer axle - 5980 lbs. Total = 14,320 lbs.
The difference between the first and seconds passes is one extra serration on the Reese serrated washers on the shank and one less chain link. While I may not have gotten the true tongue weight, the numbers show that tightening up the WDH transfers weight both to the front TV axles and to the TT axles. TV front went up by 240 lbs while TT went up by 140 lbs. Not sure if this is useful info? I can say though that getting the chains hooked up on the second pass was really tough so that should indicate right there that I am transferring far too much weight.
The truck GVWR is 9600 lbs, front GAWR is 5600 lbs & rear is 6100 lbs, GCWR is 23,000 lbs. TT GVWR is 6800 lbs, CCC is 1320 lbs, NCC is 1563 lbs, UVW is 5237 lbs and listed hitch wt. is 518 lbs. Truck hitch is good for 1250 lbs tongue wt. and 12,500 lbs towing. WDH has 800 lb bars and is rated 1200/12,000 lbs.
Is a tongue weight scale a useful tool to have? I have a feeling it'd be a bit of a waste of money since once you have been to the scales and have it all figured out, you are okay unless you make mods with significant weight changes.
You do not need to get a separate scale to do tongue weight, like said before, easiest to just go across with the bars unhooked and then you know the true tongue weight.
Just for extrapolation purposes, using your scale tickets you can see that the trailer itself is 6540 pounds. 10% would be 654, 12.5% = 818 and 15%=981 pounds.
In your weight with weight distributing bars hooked up at lower setting, your combined truck axles showed an additional 690 pounds. Now this is far from exact, and should not be what you use to determine tongue weight, but I would think your tongue weight is actually slightly than this as some weight usually is transferred back to the trailer. Even if this were your tongue weight, you would at least be at 10%. I prefer to load tongue heavy when possible, but that is preference.
On your second weight, you have something else going on. The trailer and the rear of the truck are fighting each other and you have them working to put more weight on the steer and trailer axles, and less on the drive axle. This is actually not a good situation to be in, your truck may drive funny and you should truly have a little more weight on the drive axle. Regardless, you had put 1250 pound son the truck. Again, that is not the true tongue weight because of the situation with the WD bars. But it suggests your tongue weight lies somewhere between the 690 and 1250 mark. again, this is NOT an accurate calculation of your tongue weight.
Based upon those numbers, I feel like your trailer is not too badly loaded. But your WDH is not dialed in well. Ideally you would like to see your steer axle at 4300 pounds, it's unloaded weight. I think if you did this again, but let out that one link of chain (keep the head angle where it was) you would be close.
Remember this is as much art as it is science. The combo needs to feel safe on the road, not just look safe on paper.
And kudos to you for taking the time to work through this. I know my first scale ticket(s) held some surprises for me.