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Old 09-21-2012, 09:51 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
The ball should be about 1" on the unhitched truck above the trailer tongue height. If you are now at 25" with the lowest bolt holes used, you may have to get 1 of the extended drop shanks. Don't go too overboard....you don't want that puppy dragging the ground. Before buying another hitch shank, see how the current setup does.

I think a properly setup WDH would have gotten your truck level without the air shocks/bars. IMHO, the hitch head was not tilted back enough for the chain lengths used in your photos.

The 1st post indicated air shocks, and now the referral is to air bags ?? Which is it ?? Air shocks may require some pressure, but I think air bags can be run at no pressure ?? That is the way to set up your truck if you can.

What weight spring bars are you using ?? With a listed dry tongue weight of 720 lbs., you should probably be using 1200 lb bars.
my "too early in the morning bad" Firestone air bags Rite ride system 2525. Removed factory bump stops to install.
Min air pressure to run is 5 lbs. Most guys are hauling with 35 to 40 in them once loaded. Max is 100.
Bars are the 1200lb Reese WD dual cam system

The ball head was set without weight - pretty much straight up level, No tilt forward or to the rear.
Tilting forward the ball affords me what exactly?
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Old 09-21-2012, 10:04 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Road-King View Post
Found this on-line when I was setting my WDH up. Maybe it will help;

The procedure sounds difficult but really is not... It can be a bit tedious trying to achieve a perfect condition, but is not difficult... You should be pretty near perfect after a few readjustments and you'll probably find your TT tows and handles much better...

I have seldom seen a hitch adjustment from a dealership that couldn't be improved on with a bit of fine adjustment...
Best Regards,
Les"
Thanks Les and everyone else. without the air bags system it looked like a "soup sandwich" Anyone with military time served would know what that means.

Will give it a try Saturday or Sunday if its not raining.
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Old 09-21-2012, 10:08 AM   #23
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Tilting the head on a WDH will add or subtract tension on the WD bars, there by adding or subtracting weight on the front axle of the TV.

Tilt it towards the TT should add. Tilting it towards the TV should subtract.
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Old 09-21-2012, 10:08 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
If the truck and trailer were level and handling well, why install an air shock system ??
I am not familiar with air shocks, but can you run less pressure ??
By putting pressure in those puppies, you now have significant more stress on the shock mounts instead of the springs. Shock mounts are fabricated to take the normal up and down stresses of the shocks, but I wonder about long term problems with carrying the weight of the truck...
OP has air bags, not air shocks.
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Old 09-21-2012, 10:11 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Road-King View Post
Tilting the head on a WDH will add or subtract tension on the WD bars, there by adding or subtracting weight on the front axle of the TV.

Tilt it towards the TT will add. Tilting it towards the TV will subtract.
with the ball straight up I was using the 5 or 6th link on the chain. 6 was perhaps too much to try and pick uo the back of the truck creating more sway? does that seem correct. Things were not this difficult hauling my ass across Afghanistan
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Old 09-21-2012, 10:25 AM   #26
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To my way of thinking, a WDH and sway control are related, but at the same time two different things. If your talking about loosing tongue weight by having too much tension on your WD bars, my thinking is your not loosing any tongue weight at all. Your moving some of the support of that tongue weight from your TV back axle to the TV front axle. What this does is make your TV ride in a more natural angle (TV front NOT pointing up) and makes the steering safer by getting rid of the floating feeling you have with a light front axle.
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Old 09-21-2012, 10:25 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by MilCop4523 View Post
with the ball straight up I was using the 5 or 6th link on the chain. 6 was perhaps too much to try and pick uo the back of the truck creating more sway? does that seem correct. Things were not this difficult hauling my ass across Afghanistan
IMO, the first thing you have to do is: If the trailer sits level with the top of the ball socket at 22", you have to get the top of the ball on the truck at 22" with no air in the bags. Once you get this accomplished, you can hook up and start tilting the head to accomplish the desired tension on the hitch. Tilting the hitch head AFTER you get it the same height as the trailer is what sets the tension whether you want 4,5,6 links. GET THE SOCKET & BALL SET FIRST!

You can add air to the bags to decrease some of the tension on the chains if there is too much wt added to the front axle of the truck. Measure it empty and try to get the wdh & air bags to get it back to the same height.
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Old 09-21-2012, 12:00 PM   #28
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There is something wayyy off in your measurements or an F150 sits alot higher than either my old Dodge 4x4 which the bottom of the receiver on the truck was at 20 1/4 or the new Superduty 4x4 which sits at 16 1/4 and then adding the drop shank puts it even lower at the ball. With the weight you have IMO a properly setup hitch would have eliminated pretty much all your ride issues without airbags to complicate things. Airbags are great on a 5ver as you are not dealing with trying to properly setup a weight distribution hitch as the bags are kind of artificially making the truck level and that affects the ability of the WD hitch to do it's job as intended. Road-Kings instructions are a good place to start except I was told and have always tried to get an equal amount of drop front and rear within 1/2 inch as I have never seen a properly setup unit that stayed at stock ride height and that is on 3/4 ton trucks.a quote on this from EHowto

If everything is set up correctly, the tow vehicle will settle down evenly, front and rear. Compare the coupled height measurements at the front and rear wheel openings to the ground with the measurements taken during Step 1. If front settles lower than rear, increase the number of chain links between lift unit and spring bar. If rear settles excessively lower than front, decrease the number of chain links between lift unit and spring bars. You should be able to get within 1/2 inch both front and rear. Ensure there are always at least 6 links between the lift unit and the spring bar.

The link to the article.
How to Setup a Weight Distributing Hitch | eHow.com
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Old 09-21-2012, 12:31 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by TheSasks View Post
There is something wayyy off in your measurements or an F150 sits alot higher than either my old Dodge 4x4 which the bottom of the receiver on the truck was at 20 1/4 or the new Superduty 4x4 which sits at 16 1/4 and then adding the drop shank puts it even lower at the ball. With the weight you have IMO a properly setup hitch would have eliminated pretty much all your ride issues without airbags to complicate things. Airbags are great on a 5ver as you are not dealing with trying to properly setup a weight distribution hitch as the bags are kind of artificially making the truck level and that affects the ability of the WD hitch to do it's job as intended. Road-Kings instructions are a good place to start except I was told and have always tried to get an equal amount of drop front and rear within 1/2 inch as I have never seen a properly setup unit that stayed at stock ride height and that is on 3/4 ton trucks.a quote on this from EHowto

If everything is set up correctly, the tow vehicle will settle down evenly, front and rear. Compare the coupled height measurements at the front and rear wheel openings to the ground with the measurements taken during Step 1. If front settles lower than rear, increase the number of chain links between lift unit and spring bar. If rear settles excessively lower than front, decrease the number of chain links between lift unit and spring bars. You should be able to get within 1/2 inch both front and rear. Ensure there are always at least 6 links between the lift unit and the spring bar.

The link to the article.
How to Setup a Weight Distributing Hitch | eHow.com
From what I've read in both Ford and GM manuals, with a wdh hitch, the front wheel well height should be within 1/2" or less of the stock unloaded height.
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Old 09-21-2012, 12:33 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by dunnnc

From what I've read in both Ford and GM manuals, with a wdh hitch, the front wheel well height should be within 1/2" or less of the stock unloaded height.
Did you read it or just look at the pictures?
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