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Old 04-13-2016, 03:47 PM   #1
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Reese SideWinder + Reese Lube Plate - Dangerous advice from Reese

Having used hitch lube grease on my Reese Titan 16K hitch, with the Reese Revolution/Sidewinder pin box on our 5er, I was fed up of all the mess from the grease (and the grease I was using seemed to work more as an adhesive than a lube sometimes, almost sealing the pin plate to the hitch).

I was delighted to discover the Reese 83003 lube plate, specifically for the Reese Titan 16K hitch, and which looked like it should be compatible with the Revolution/Sidewinder, since rather than the usual lube discs it's shaped to fit the hitch head.



Doing due diligence I contacted Reese technical support, asking them to confirm that the lube plate was compatible with the Revolution Sidewinder.

Their response: -
"Yes, you can use the 83003 on the Titan hitch with a Sidewinder pin box. Lube plates that go on the pin box will NOT work."

I ordered one of these lube plates from Amazon, but the first came missing the bolts to secure it to the hitch head, so I got a replacement.

I next noticed that the protrusions on the underside of the lube plate, which are designed to sit inside the indentations on the hitch head, were too far apart and prevented the lube plate from sitting flat on the hitch head.
Reese have not responded to requests for feedback on that issue.

However, before proceeding further in chasing them on that issue, I decided to actually take the lube plate over to our storage lot, and check that it would really work with the Revolution/Sidewinder pin box.
I took the wedge off the revolution, and as you can see from the photo below, it is anything but compatible.



If someone were to actually follow Reese's suggestion that the Lube plate is compatible with the SideWinder/Revolution then they'd have a wedge which barely makes contact with the inside of the hitch head, and is instead only really making contact with the lube plate 'plastic'. Obviously a very dangerous setup.

I've contacted Reese to advise them of this error, and suggest that they change their response to such inquiries, but I'll have to wait to see if they respond.

In the meantime I just wanted to warn folks that could possibly be considering using the Reese lube plate with a SideWinder/Revolution, especially since it seems from first look as though that's exactly what the lube plate is designed for (since it's not one of the common lube discs, and looks like it should be ok)
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Old 04-14-2016, 12:21 PM   #2
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Hey Leefl I am using the same setup with the fifth airborne sidewinder and the Titan and was thinking about the lube plate. Please keep us posted on Reese's response.


Robert
2012 RAM 3500 Cummins
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Old 04-14-2016, 02:16 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weldon182 View Post
Hey Leefl I am using the same setup with the fifth airborne sidewinder and the Titan and was thinking about the lube plate. Please keep us posted on Reese's response.
Will do. They've asked me to send in a photo of the hitch head and the lube plate, as if they either don't remember what they're supposed to look like, or they think I'm lying about what hitch I have. I don't understand it.

The picture that I posted above is all they should need. Seems pretty obvious to me.

Have you been using any grease/lube between the hitch head and sidewinder, or been using it 'dry' ?
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Old 04-14-2016, 02:30 PM   #4
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Just dry however I have ordered the lube plate. But looking at your picture maybe I will cut those spots off where it interferes.


Robert
2012 RAM 3500 Cummins
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Old 04-14-2016, 02:37 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weldon182 View Post
Just dry however I have ordered the lube plate. But looking at your picture maybe I will cut those spots off where it interferes.


Robert
2012 RAM 3500 Cummins
Laramie Longhorn w/rambox
2015 Wildcat 317RL
I have thought about doing the same. However, do be warned that on both of the lube plates that I ordered the molding indents (where the bolts are supposed to go through into the head) do not fit into the matching indents in the hitch head. It's like they're about 3/16 too wide (and of course you can't trim the moldings since they're indents, and would leave a hole between the indented portion and the non-indented portion, thus weakening the point where the lube plate is supposed to be attached.

My additional (slight) concern is that due to the thickness of the lube plate the wedge will be higher in the hitch head slot, and thus still be making less contact with the hitch head, even if it were all the way in.
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:07 PM   #6
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Looks like Reese have admitted that they were wrong to suggest that the 83003 lube plate could be used with the Revolution/Sidewinder (when unlocked with wedge): -

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reese Technical Support
I was just talking with our supervisor and he indicated the instruction sheet for the 30865 was up dated and it indicates not to use any lube plate when a sidewinder pin box is used including the custom lube plate.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Updated Manual for the Reese Titan Sidewinder/Revolution Wedge
3. Remove any lube plate used on the hitch and pin box. This will allow full engagement of wedge against opening of Titan Hitch (The need for a lube plate is NOT needed because pin box does not rotate on hitch)
As for the lube plate not matching the imprints on the hitch, we will document for any further calls as of this time no one has heard of this issue.
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:09 PM   #7
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I still think some kind of lube is needed for when hitching up, but I won't be using the lube that I had been using because of the resulting sticky mess.
I think I'll also make some sort of bed-protector, to stop any of whatever lube I do use (likely WD40 lithium or similar) dripping down and getting under the gaps in my bedliner (where I cut it around the rails)
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:19 PM   #8
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Thanks for the info


Robert
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:21 PM   #9
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What benefit is a lube plate with a Sidewinder with a wedge? I just spray a little white lithium on the ramp of the hitch. It stays on the front of the pin box and the hitch ramp, not on the hitch flat portion itself. After 4 yrs, the paint is still 75% present, but most of what is gone is from the tonneau cover rubbing on it.
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:21 PM   #10
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I use standard wheel bearing grease on the pin, wedge and plate. The other parts inside my Reese hitch I use some lithium or just a little grease. My hitch will go in tomorrow and stay in til end of October and I do not get any grease anywhere. I use a bag on top so it doesn't rub on the tonneau cover like OC has happen.
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