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Old 11-30-2015, 11:53 AM   #11
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I would strongly suggest you consider moving up to a standard full size 1500 pickup. There is something inherently unstable with your combination that can not be solved with the hitch You are very fortunate that you came out ok.

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Old 11-30-2015, 12:13 PM   #12
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Been there almost done that with a Ford explorer and a 27 ' trailer. Dealer swore up and down no problem with the combination. Well let me say dealer/salesman will tell you anything to get you off the lot. You need a bigger tow vehicle that little Ranger won't do it. Sounds like a wheel base problem. You need a longer wheelbase for stability and towing. Keep the trailer and trade in the Ranger for a F-150. Oh!! the point of the story almost got killed years ago coming home from Florida, the 27' started swaying into an 18 wheeler and tore up the awning and side plus did a job on the 18 wheelers mirrors. Got home and traded in the Explorer for the F-150 never had a problem after that. Other than the stupid things I did on my own.

PS: Had a problem all the way down to FL and installed sway bars on the trailer and still had a problem all the way home.

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Old 11-30-2015, 12:40 PM   #13
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Sway Issues

I hear people talk about the capacity of this or that but your issue as noted by others is tongue weight. The actual percentage is not as important as the way it handles. You certainly need to keep it a couple hundred pounds tongue heavy but the exact amount you will know the first time you go down the road. Weight equalizing hitches keep the headlights out of the trees and give you better front end steering but won't do anything for a tongue light situation. Sorry you had to learn this the hard way, can't imagine a dealer who wouldn't give you some basics on pulling.
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Old 11-30-2015, 12:57 PM   #14
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Returning to Columbus Ohio on our shake down trip in a new Coachmen 22qb to Florida high wind and semi trucks caused the MH to move almost a half a lane when they went by. We noticed several trailers having even worst problems in the twenty mph winds. Returning home we found the inner tire (DRW) was flat, (screw) tire pressure needs to be checked and adjusted when the weight center is moved.
Although that comment may have no connection with your problem the following might.
Our next adventure was Alaska. One morning a Dodge Ram, 4wd, passed us on the interstate, my guess seventy plus and I commented to my wife how high the truck sat of the ground, the camper looked brand new, appeared longer than the truck and at also sat above the wheels with no side skirts. About two hours later the traffic backed up and as we crested a hill both the truck and the camper sat on their side in the median. It appeared no one was hurt.
I believe between wind and the huge amount of air under the rigs makes many of the truck /camper combo unstable. The semi trucks with the aero packages makes it even worse. Short wheelbase tow vehicles will have weight transfer issues do to lack of front wheel traction,
Weigh the rig axel by axel. I'll bet the combination of wheel base, shocks, tires, ground clearance and road conditions all combined to the problem.
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Old 11-30-2015, 01:01 PM   #15
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I disagree.

Originally Posted by Maineguy View Post
Unfortunately the truck is not built to tow that weight ... suspension, tranny, etc, etc just not beefy enough.

Don't listen to the tow vehicle snobs that think you need to go out and buy a 3500 Duramax 12 cylinder Cummings diesel to pull any travel trailer. You're truck with the 3 liter tow package has a tow capacity of 6060 lbs. your dry weight is about 1500lbs to 2000 lbs under that. I would tow it dry, load up on water when you get there. as for the sway, I would start by looking at your tires. Make sure you got the right tires on the trailer. You need at least load range C. The tires will say load range C on the side. If they don't have a load range with that weight, you have found your problem. If you got load range c or d I would inflate them to at least 50 psi. I would also max out inflation on the rear tires of your truck as per the pressure stated on the side walls. Like the others said I would make sure you have 200-300lbs on your trailer ball. I would not put 10% of your tow weight on the back of that truck. Aside from this I would make sure your load distribution hitch is set up correctly. Dealers do not always set them up correctly. You probably can find a video on line that explains it very simply.

I had the same problems when I bought my 2502ks that I tow with my Tacoma. I was told my truck was to light, not beefy enough blah blah blah. lol I put 20K on my truck this summer pulling that 4500 lb dry weight trailer. That kind of advice I do not find helpful or constructive. I played around with my setup until I found what works. I am telling you this so that maybe you don't get disheartened and give up. Make sure your hitch is right adjust your pressures, make sure you have the appropriate tires for the load on your truck and the trailer. Hope this helps, enjoy your new trailer!
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Old 11-30-2015, 01:26 PM   #16
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Looking at all of the above I would say that the "Ranger" is a dog at any speed and any of the fixes suggested are a workaround not a real fix. If you cant go to a full 1/2 ton truck look at a used SUV with a tow capacity of 3500-500lbs and appropriate GCWR etc and tyres with appropriate ED and equalizer hitch properly set up as a solution. I had a Hyundai Santa Fe and ROO 19 combination for two years before moving to a 5th and it went well. There is also a lot be said for double axles on the Trailer vehicle also.
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Old 11-30-2015, 03:35 PM   #17
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By process of elimination, it may be that the Ranger is capable for your needs. Hopefully your request will bring answers.

Worse case scenario, You have a light single axle trailer being towed by a short light TV. If your Ranger has standard suspension, standard shocks, no sway bar and standard tires, the TV is at a severe disadvantage. As you pointed out, you were OK in the 55 MPH range. Add another 15 MPH, cross winds, and buffeting and you are in are in for a white knuckles ride. But you already know that. Take a little insight into:

But there may be other causes. When towing, proper tires on the tow vehicle need to be inflated to compensate for load and tire roll-out. The tire dealer recommendations are to air up to the maximum recommended pressure. For instance, the tires on my TV recommend 30-32 lbs for normal driving, but 40 lbs.(front and rear) if loaded or towing. Load range C on the trailer should be at 50 lbs. These figures are in extremely fine print on all tire sidewalls.

There is also a 60/40 rule for trailers. Sixty percent of the weight should be ahead of the axle and forty percent behind the axle. If the ratio is much off, say 50/50 or 40/60, your trailer will sway (like a loaded hay wagon being pulled down the road). A burst of cross wind or turbulence from a traffic can exaggerate the sway.

A likely scenario. Without knowing it, quite possibly the flat on the trailer tire was the cause of your 180. If it rolled over road debris, it doesn't take long to deflate. A flat or blow-out on a single axle trailer can throw even a heavier TV into a side-slide. The indications are that,because the rim was ruined, it spent some of it's final seconds gouging the pavement-and the tire was flat. If you still have the tire, inspect it/or have it inspected for a gash or large puncture (especially in the sidewall)-or it could have been a factory defect. It may not be the total cause, but it could be the cause for the ultimate thrill ride.
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Old 11-30-2015, 05:04 PM   #18
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I towed a similar sized single axle rig with my 95 Ranger (4wd, 4.0, 5 spd).
I also usually carried at least one motorcycle in the bed.
It towed it ok- no sway issues (and no WDH- just air bags on the truck).
Cross winds were ok also- with the sway control cranked up pretty good.
It felt pretty solid to me. The pull was really felt - especially with head winds.
I could usually carry 55 mph with a heavy head wind uphill.
I ended up stepping up to a Tundra and never looked back though.
I am a stickler for a heavier tow rig than trailer.

Bottom line- my rig towed fine. I did prefer the 1/2 ton Tundra though.
Then it was almost a pleasure to cruise along.

Yo do NOT have enough tongue weight .
Change some things around. And add atleast one if not 2 sway control brakes.
I use a good bathroom scale to check tongue weights. Just attach a ball to the trailer tongue and lower it onto the scale- compensating for tare weight of all the blocks you use to get a normal ride height.

Your truck is probably pushing 4000 lbs with you and your stuff in it...if not more.
You should be able to handle that size rig with the right setup.
just don;t go too fast. Stay 55-60.
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Old 11-30-2015, 05:21 PM   #19
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Sway Issue

I tow my RP 179 with a 2009 Ford Sport Trac. 6 cylinder. I did have a brake control installed, but no sway control or weight distribution hitch. I do not travel over 65, usually around 60mph unless it is windy in which case, for safety, I reduce my speed. I have not had any issues with swaying. Thank Goodness you are safe, and no one was injured. :-)
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Old 11-30-2015, 05:46 PM   #20
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Sorry, but I tried the Ranger P/U with open utility, single axle boat trailer and other small loads. Was V-6, auto. Not a tow work horse. Want to tow a travel trailer, even a light one---- buy a 3/4 truck.

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ford, hitch, sway, weight

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