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Old 07-13-2014, 11:15 AM   #1
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Deadbolt on TT won't latch when hitched to TV

Looking for suggestions...

I recently noticed that the deadbolt on my Flagstaff 21WRS won't latch while the trailer is hitched to the truck. The deadbolt works fine with the trailer unhitched and stabilized, but not while hitched and rigged for travel.

My guess is that when hitched to TV there is enough flex in the TT chassis that the deadbolt is angled downward and is hitting bottom of the strike plate, which is preventing it from engaging.

Is it normal for the TT chassis to flex that much?

Anyone else have a similar problem with theirs?

The trailer is relatively lightweight at 5000 lb dry. I use an e-4 WD hitch.


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Old 07-13-2014, 11:35 AM   #2
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That doesn't make sense. Whether it's hitched or unhitched and leveled there should be about the same amount of weight resting on either the ball (when hitched) or the tongue jack (when unhitched). Is the trailer fairly level when hitched? If it's nose down or up too much, it might affect the alignment of latching mechanism.
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Old 07-13-2014, 12:14 PM   #3
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Good point. I normally give it a slight nose up attitude when unhitched as rain could potentially come in through the rear slide out.



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Old 07-13-2014, 12:40 PM   #4
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Could be frame flex. I had to file the hole for the deadbolt a little. Problem solved.
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Old 07-13-2014, 12:49 PM   #5
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Open door then put deadbolt out and see if its just barely in alignment.
If it appears ok, Hitch up and open door put the deadbolt out and see if it is out of alignment. More than likely it is very close and just making it into lock position, then when you hooking up it changes a very small amount like 1/32 of an inch. I know it should be the same hooked as unhooked but frame deflection ripped the linoleum in my bathroom so anythings possible.
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Old 07-13-2014, 12:53 PM   #6
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Do you have an L Square?
With the door open place the long end on the side of the door frame and the short end on the door threshold, hold the long end tight to the frame side and check the gap at the threshold hooked and unhooked.
The difference between hooked and unhooked will tell how much flexing the door frame is doing.
Check the screws or rivets that hold the door frame to the trailer floor and walls.
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Old 07-13-2014, 01:16 PM   #7
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Thanks All.

The trailer is unhitched now. The bolt sits real close to the bottom of the striker so it would only take a small angle of deflection to cause the bolt to hit the strike plate. I'll take some measurements when i hitch up next week for our trip.

I was afraid that maybe i have too much weight distribution dialed in to my hitch, but it sounds like a little bit of flexing is normal. There is no way to relocate the strike plate on mine without drilling new holes so i may have to file some material off the bottom edge, or better still, have the dealer fix it lol.


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Old 07-13-2014, 05:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlocicero View Post
Could be frame flex. I had to file the hole for the deadbolt a little. Problem solved.
X2. It takes 2 minutes to file yourself and why bother the dealers for that. Besides they will take a month, not find a problem at first, but the second time you have them look at it they will replace the whole latch and youll still have the same problem.
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