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Old 05-23-2009, 09:37 PM   #1
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Importance of Sizing WD Bars Properly

Being a newbie to an RV requiring a WD hitch, I ordered the 1,200 pound trunion bars on my Reese Straight-line system (with Dual Cam). Our tongue weight is about 500 pounds. The systems were all the same price regardless of "capacity" so I though I'd just get the biggest one. After a year with those bars, I switched 800 pound trunion bars this year. Wow! What an improvement in ride! And the adjustment effect per link in the chain is less. So it is easier to get the system balanced just the way I want it. The 1,200 bars were just too stiff for my equipment. Whatever system you get, your tongue weight should be at least 50% of the rated capacity of the system. Wanted to get this info "out there" to keep others from making my mistake.
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Old 05-26-2009, 07:44 AM   #2
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I think this is a very important post my acadianbob.

In my case, the dealer set me up with 800 lb. bars, with a listed 559 lb. tongue weight in the brochure. Should be plenty of spring bars, right?? But the actual weight pulling back from the dealer was 640 lbs., still well within range. After loading up for camping, minus food and clothes, the tongue weight went to 720 lbs......getting close to that limit. If I have to travel with liquid in the gray tank (directly in front of the axles), and the black tank (in front of the gray tank), then I had no doubt I would be over the 800 lb. limit of the spring bars.

So, I ordered 1200 lb. spring bars. Even at the 720 lb. tongue weight, I am still within the range of the bars (600-1200 lbs.). I get good weight distribution, and sway control (Reese Dual Cam). But those puppies are stiff.....you can feel it going down the road. I am considering doing a little experimenting with the 800 lb. bars, to see what is the best possible setup that I can come up with. I have also considered switching the bars considering what kind of camping I will be doing, or if there is a possibility of having to travel with liquid in the black and gray tanks. But the problem there is that the bars are different lengths, so they seat differently on the dual cams. I just want to make sure that I have the best possible setup for my TV and trailer combo.
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Old 05-26-2009, 09:06 AM   #3
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Yes, I found the 1,200 pound bars to be extremely stiff. And I also found the bars to be a different length (longer) than the 800 pound bars. Fortunately it isn't too difficult to adjust the arms on the dual cam. For me, the 800 pound bars were a vast improvement. Good luck adjusting yours for the optimal setup. Bob
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Old 05-26-2009, 12:53 PM   #4
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Yep. alot of people believe in getting the biggest right off the bat! that`s the wrong way to go, as you found out. worst case is the bars won`t flex enough and they may actually start to stress the trailer A frame and bend or break it. glad you got the proper size bars for your trailer.
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Old 05-26-2009, 03:08 PM   #5
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weight distribution hitch

Now you guys have me thinking about what I have. I have the 2009 235 rks surveyor and I'm using the EZ-Lift weight distribution hitch with a sway bar. The bars that come with it say MVHC 550 lbs, and 10,000 lbs MGVTR. Is that saying the bars are only rated for 550 lbs tongue weight. I've already towed approximately 5000 miles with it so far and there doesn't seem to be any problem. Any ideas? I bought my trailer from "Jeff Couch's RV Nation" and they helped me set it up and never expressed any concerns.
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Old 06-06-2009, 08:59 AM   #6
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I have a 235RKS also. Tongue weight is near 500 pounds dry. I'm sure we are near your 550 pounds loaded. But if you towed 5,000 miles without incident, I would think you would be fine. You might just park your rig in a nice flat area, take a look, is the trailer nice and flat? Or is the nose down and the tail of your truck down? You want to be nice and flat. If you are, you should be good.
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Old 06-14-2009, 07:05 AM   #7
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Importance of sizing WD bars properly

There's a few different things I want to try about setting up for towing that I haven't really checked before. Generally everything looks pretty good after I've hooked on but I feel like I'm still getting a bit of sway. One of the things I would like to do is get my trailer a little more level. Right now after I hook onto the trailer it is a wee bit tipped back. The dealer said that is better then the other way. Also I've been reading on the setup of weight distributing hitches. Here's a link if anyone is interested.http://www.ehow.com/how_2094696_setu...ing-hitch.html. I haven't followed these instructions yet but plan on it next set up. I have the Eaz-lift system with a sway bar.
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Old 06-15-2009, 07:38 AM   #8
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Beware of that dealer advise. You need about 15% of total trailer weight on the tongue. If the front is high and the back low, you may be transferring too much weight to the end of your trailer; which will induce the tendency to sway. Part of the issue may be getting the correct height on your ball. My WD hitch instructions said the height of the ball should be about 1" higher than the top of the coupler when the trailer is level. (this is with your TV unloaded). This one inch, I think, is probably what they estimate your TV will go down once loaded and leveled. Then your trailer should be level as will as your TV.
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Old 06-15-2009, 08:15 AM   #9
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gettmad - With sway bars, you need 2 (right and left side) if your TT is over 24' as stated by many manufactures.

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Old 06-16-2009, 01:45 AM   #10
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Thanks, for the advice guys.
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Old 06-16-2009, 07:48 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acadianbob View Post
If the front is high and the back low, you may be transferring too much weight to the end of your trailer; which will induce the tendency to sway.
I understand the reasoning behind this statement, and that is what has been recommended on posts on numerous websites that I have visited.....if you can't get the trailer exactly level, then a tongue down attitude is best. But I would like to throw another idea into that reasoning: On a tandem wheel trialer, as you raise the tongue, then you are probably taking a little weight off of the front TT wheels, and putting more weight on the rear wheels. That would change the fulcrum point some to a spot nearer the rear wheels, instead of 1/2 way between the wheels if the trailer were level. Wouldn't the change of that fulcrum point put more weight back onto the tongue by moving the center of the fulcrum point to the rear??? And if you lower the tongue, shouldn't that move the fulcrum point foward, therefore taking some weight off of the tongue??
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Old 06-19-2009, 07:34 AM   #12
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Interesting idea! Not sure how much difference that would make but your reasoning seems to have merit. Here's another thought. How is your trailer loaded? Where are the tanks and do you tow with a full fresh water? Where do you store things in the trailer? More than half of that additional weight should be forward of the wheels (fulcrum point) to minimize sway. Another thought, I think your axles should be evenly loaded or you may be overloading one axle's tires versus the other axle. This could cause you tire problems; potential blowouts from overheating of overworked tires. This argues for a flat towing position for your trailer. Even the load across your axles and tires.
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Old 06-25-2009, 06:08 PM   #13
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weight distribution setup

Well, I set up my tv and trailer according to this link http://www.ehow.com/how_2094696_setu...tch.html...and everything is level. Except my TV doesn't squat at all on the front according to my measurement. I have the eaz lift system and it doesn't matter if I increase or decrease the amount of links on the chain it stays the same. The trailer seems to be making the rear of my vehicle squat and not the front regardless of the "weight distributing" hitch. Any thoughts?
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Old 06-26-2009, 06:15 AM   #14
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What vehicle do you have? Newer GM vehicles won't squat no matter how much bind you put on the WD bars. The best way to set those up is to scale the rig and adjust according to the weight transfered.
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Old 07-11-2009, 06:01 PM   #15
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Thanks for the reply, sorry about my delay. I was on a 2 week camping trip. I own a 2007 chev. avalanche. I haven't heard that about the newer GM vehicles, but that gives me some relief about what I was doing.
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Old 07-30-2009, 05:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
I understand the reasoning behind this statement, and that is what has been recommended on posts on numerous websites that I have visited.....if you can't get the trailer exactly level, then a tongue down attitude is best. But I would like to throw another idea into that reasoning: On a tandem wheel trialer, as you raise the tongue, then you are probably taking a little weight off of the front TT wheels, and putting more weight on the rear wheels. That would change the fulcrum point some to a spot nearer the rear wheels, instead of 1/2 way between the wheels if the trailer were level. Wouldn't the change of that fulcrum point put more weight back onto the tongue by moving the center of the fulcrum point to the rear??? And if you lower the tongue, shouldn't that move the fulcrum point foward, therefore taking some weight off of the tongue??
Yeah, I know, I am quoting myself.

I found this thread that sorta supports my theory about the tongue low/high weight distribution on a tandem wheeled trailer.

http://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/fu...g/1/page/1.cfm
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Old 07-31-2009, 08:18 AM   #17
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Yeah, I think that's right but I don't think it is a good idea to do that. More weight in back of the fulcrum rather than in front of it I think will be more conducive to sway.
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