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Old 05-20-2012, 10:05 AM   #31
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Thanks Herk and Triguy. The heavy weight scale set up looks like something we will use. The only public scale we could find was quite a drive. Husband spent time yesterday getting on and off the bathroom scales hefting stuff we keep in our existing camper. I am considering getting one of those hand held scales you can use to weigh your luggage. I could use it to assess weight of items being added to camper. He is planning on the Equalizer hitch - at least the 10,000. Really glad to know that hitch will prevent all the tongue weight from going onto the rear axle. The rear axle is rated at 4100, and the front axle rating is 3550. When we weighed the car yesterday, the load on the rear axle was 2800 and on the front axle was 3020. That was with me in the car. We would be adding another 450 pounds of people and stuff to the car, and a tongue of 770-800. I will look at the calculator again to see how that shakes out.

By the way, I just want to say thanks again for all the info you have shared. It is amazing to me (and husband didn't want to believe it) that despite our car having a "tow rating of 7,900 lbs", and having a powerful engine, we can't tow nearly that much. The limiting factor on our vehicle is the 7,100 GVWR - and the fact that the car itself is so heavy really decreases what we can tow. Hope people look past that "tow rating" when considering the kind of camper they can tow. You guys were also right that the listed weight of the camper in the brochure is lighter than the actual weight. Every single one of the units we have seen like ours arrives at the dealer with a yellow sticker that is about 300lbs more than the listed weight.
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Old 05-20-2012, 10:29 AM   #32
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You're doing a great job checking your weight and ratings. I know this is a lot of work now, but you will feel good about your setup later on.
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Old 05-20-2012, 02:44 PM   #33
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i commend you on all the work you're doing to understand and learn about this.

many won't go to all the trouble that you are and just hook up things and take off, endangering themselves, their family and others on the road.

most members of the "weight police" are really trying to keep others safe, not because they think that you need a 1 ton dually to pull a popup.
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Old 05-20-2012, 09:32 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by herk7769 View Post
A weight distributing hitch will allow you to "carry" your tongue weight "distributed" among all the axles in contact with the ground; typically shifting the weight normally carried by the rear axle onto the front and camper axles.
As Lou stated, the weight is distributed around all axles. Weight is taken off of the rear TV axle, and that is put on the front TV axle and the trailer axles. In my case, 120 lbs. is transferred to the trailer axles....which means that weight is no longer carried by my truck. That gives me another 120 lbs. of leeway before I reach my GVWR. Your results should be similar.
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Old 05-21-2012, 07:16 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
That gives me another 120 lbs. of leeway before I reach my GVWR. Your results should be similar.
Chap, I do not believe that is the case. Remember that the tongue load is still on the frame due to the forces involved being levered across the fulcrum of the ball. In most cases (I would have said ALL but...) the frame is the limiting factor when determining GVWR.

If you put a lever on a load and pry downward, the prying force is multiplied at the point of the load but the fulcrum carries 100 percent of the applied force.

This is also why three weighs are required; truck alone, hitched to camper with WD bars in place and without.
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Old 05-21-2012, 09:42 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by herk7769 View Post
Chap, I do not believe that is the case. Remember that the tongue load is still on the frame due to the forces involved being levered across the fulcrum of the ball. In most cases (I would have said ALL but...) the frame is the limiting factor when determining GVWR.
Lou, I am going to have to respectfully disagree, due to observing my own weight stats found here: Weight Stats

My truck and trailer without spring bars attached: 6840 lbs.

My truck and trailer with spring bars attached: 6720 lbs.

My truck is now 120 lbs. lighter with the spring bars attached.

My trailer has gained 140 lbs. when the spring bars are attached.

Where is that extra 20 lbs. difference (140 vs. 120) ?? That is due to to a scale with only 20 lb. increments...which is probably the standard for truck scales.

Even with the diagram that was attached, it shows the front axle gaining 612 lbs., and the rear losing 912 lbs. with the WDH. Where does that 300 lb. difference go ?? The diagram shows the trailer axle gaining 300 lbs.

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Originally Posted by herk7769 View Post
If you put a lever on a load and pry downward, the prying force is multiplied at the point of the load but the fulcrum carries 100 percent of the applied force.

This is also why three weighs are required; truck alone, hitched to camper with WD bars in place and without.
Agreed. But you have to calculate in the downward force being applied as a factor.
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Old 05-22-2012, 08:27 AM   #37
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MTNGUY,

I know we have been discussing this in PM, but I need to post a graphic and that is a limitation of PM. We were using a "wheel Barrow" analogy to explain each other's logic regarding why the I feel the stress of the load on the TV without WD bars stays the same even thought some of the weight is transferred to the axles of the camper via the WD hitch.

In the graphic, just because the dude picks up 25 pounds of the load of the wheel barrow, does not mean IMO, that the wheel barrow can carry more "stuff" since the frame of the wheel barrow's weight limit is still 100 pounds.

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Old 05-22-2012, 12:57 PM   #38
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Wow! When you guys get this figured out (I am sure you will!) I hope you will let me know of any impact on my set up. I can't weigh axles until my new Rockwood arrives and we load it up. But will then see where we are.
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Old 05-22-2012, 04:09 PM   #39
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Lou, that is an excellent diagram…..even “diagram man” moves his arms !!!

Like Lou said, we have been having a friendly little “convince me” debate in between working on our home obligations. Already, I have discovered that the fulcrum point moves to the front axle when using a WDH….I had never thought about that before.

When someone places a trailer tongue on a hitch, that is a Class 1 lever……….the effort (trailer tongue) is trying to lift the front axle (resistance), and the back axle act like a fulcrum. See the 3rd diagram down on the right here: Lever - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia The front axle gets lighter, and the rear axle gets the weight lost from the front axle, plus the weight of the trailer tongue. Using my combination as an example (rounded off for simplicity), putting 700 lbs. on my hitch (effort) takes 300 lbs. off my front axle (resistance), and puts 1000 lbs. on my rear axle (fulcrum).

But when a WDH is used, the front axle becomes the fulcrum point like in a Class 2 lever……the rear axle is the resistance, and the WDH is the effort. The wheel barrow in Lou’s diagram is an excellent example.
Comparing the wheelbarrow to our rigs:

Wheelbarrow front axle = tow vehicle front axle
Wheelbarrow legs = tow vehicle rear axle
The Wheelbarrow handles = hitch
“Diagram Man” arms = both trailer tongue and WDH
“Diagram Man” feet = trailer axles

If the dude pushes down on the wheelbarrow handles, that effort is going to try to lift the wheel off of the ground. Because he is pushing down, his feet will get lighter and that difference will be transferred to the wheel barrow, putting that over the 100 lb. weight limit. Our trailer axles do not get lighter when we hook up, because the weight is already on the tongue, and supported by the jack or hitch ball.

But if Diagram Man picks up on the handles, his arms now acts like a WDH….some of that 100 lbs. of weight is transferred to the wheel (tow vehicle front axle), and I think (hence some of the discussion and debate) some of the weight goes to the dudes feet….the effort to raise handles. Again to simplify, since there are some lever length issues (wheelbase), if the dude lifts the legs off of the ground, then I think ~25 lbs. will be added to the wheel, and ~25 lbs. to the guy’s feet. If you set just the wheelbarrow on a set of scales, you would have 75 lbs. on the front wheel, plus 0 lbs. on the legs, resulting in a 25 lb. lose of weight. You could now add another 25 lbs. to the wheelbarrow without exceeding the GVWR.

Now we come back to Lou’s diagram and question……there is 100 lbs. of load in the wheelbarrow, but a set of scales will only show the wheelbarrow weighing 75 lbs. If the 100 lb. load limit is the frame itself, then that wheelbarrow is at its limit. But if the load limit is the wheel (say 100 lbs. GAWR) then you should be able to add 25 lbs more weight to the load. But that is a Class 2 lever.

With our vehicles, we are using 2 forces….a Class 1 lever when we put the trailer tongue on the hitch, and an Class 2 lever when we use a WDH. I am thinking because the WDH takes the weight off of the tow vehicle and putting it back on the trailer axles, then that frees up some extra weight capacity on the tow vehicle. In using a WDH, the truck frame does not "see" the tongue weight....it only "sees" the tongue weight minus the weight being relieved by the WDH. I think that is what Lou and I have been trying to figure out.

Hope all of that convoluted explanations, out loud thinking, and questions make sense, because I think I confused myself.

If there is an engineer in the house, you are welcome to join in.

I think my head hurts.
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Old 05-22-2012, 04:48 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
If you set just the wheelbarrow on a set of scales, you would have 75 lbs. on the front wheel, plus 0 lbs. on the legs, resulting in a 25 lb. lose of weight. You could now add another 25 lbs. to the wheelbarrow without exceeding the GVWR.
But my point is that for the frame the weight is not "lost;"it is still there right between the wheel and the legs; resting on the frame.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
Now we come back to Lou’s diagram and question……there is 100 lbs. of load in the wheelbarrow, but a set of scales will only show the wheelbarrow weighing 75 lbs. If the 100 lb. load limit is the frame itself, then that wheelbarrow is at its limit.
Exactly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
But if the load limit is the wheel (say 100 lbs. GAWR) then you should be able to add 25 lbs more weight to the load. But that is a Class 2 lever.
In my example I put the load as an average across the wheel barrow. In reality many loads are distributed across the frame adding up to the total load. For example a diesel engine weighs much more than a gas engine and the front axle of a diesel truck is much closer to its max load than a gas truck.

So if the 100 pounds in the wheel barrow was located as a point load ON the front axle; the legs would carry zero weight and diagram dude flip it over with one finger.

So, the bottom line is, IMO, that the frame sees the entire load regardless of how it is finally distributed across the potential supports (axles; legs; or feet).

I think we should let the readers decide for themselves and put the Physics textbooks away.

PS for Chap - I got my security camera system up and running through all of this. I can now watch my cameras over the Internet on our iPad. My problem turned out to be a conflict in port 80 in the router as it had already locked it out for use by the network storage drive. The iPhone app could not use port 1024 (I selected this in port 80's place) so until I disabled the NAS and reserved port 80 for the camera DVR the iPhone/iPad app was kicking my butt.
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