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Old 07-30-2015, 12:17 AM   #1
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Equalizer bracket jackets?

Just wondering if anybody uses these things? I just bought an Equalizer 4pt hitch and bought the jackets also. After getting them, I can't see how it would still have good sway control. Also, they are over 1/4" thick. Will I have to readjust the hitch with them installed?


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Old 07-30-2015, 08:19 AM   #2
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I purchased them a month ago. They are AWESOME! It cut my noise down a bunch. I'm very impressed with them. They're not thick enough to have to adjust anything, at least I didn't. What I'm most impressed with them is that I don't have grease all over the place because you don't have to over grease trying to stop the noise and the wear on the brackets. I noticed no difference in sway. Best $27 I ever spent!
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Old 07-30-2015, 06:01 PM   #3
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I like mine although I'm not sure how much noise they reduce. Most of my noise seems to come from the bar sockets on the hitch. If I don't grease those, I get the horrendous creaking and groaning that we all know about.

I didn't notice any change in sway control when I put them on.
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Old 07-30-2015, 06:29 PM   #4
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Personally I do not use them,whats a little noise. Not any worse than road noise in the vehicle Latter RJD
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Old 07-30-2015, 06:29 PM   #5
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Same as tmhudg - lube the socket swivel points, noise is gone. Jackets installed, no change in sway control.
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Old 07-30-2015, 06:33 PM   #6
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I installed them and noticed NO difference in noise. I greased the ball and the noise was gone, until it rained and the noise returned. Regressed for the next trip and no noise. I don't recommend the bracket jackets.
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Old 07-30-2015, 07:28 PM   #7
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I know everyone says "What's a little noise - it lets you know they are working" but I find it embarrassing to be making such a racket driving through the campground. On two (of the four) times I've used this hitch so far, people have come up to me as I was backing into my site and told me I needed to remove the bars - presumably because it was making so much noise they thought I was breaking things.

I had a mini-debate with one guy who swore I needed to unhook the bars before backing up. I told him I didn't. He said the Dealer told him he had to.

I asked if he had the same hitch.
Yes.
An Equalizer hitch?
Yes.
Just like this one?
Yes... except that mine has chains and a little ball (blah, blah)
Oh, then it's not the same right?
Well, maybe not exactly but it sounds like you are going to break something. I think you should unhook them.
Okay. Thanks for your help...SMH

I think I might try taking the jackets off since greasing the sockets seemed to be the ticket for me. The only thing is, even with no rain, they start to squeak again at the end of a pull over a couple of hours and I have to re-grease.

What are you guys using for grease - anything special?
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Old 07-30-2015, 07:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmhudg View Post
I know everyone says "What's a little noise - it lets you know they are working" but I find it embarrassing to be making such a racket driving through the campground. On two (of the four) times I've used this hitch so far, people have come up to me as I was backing into my site and told me I needed to remove the bars - presumably because it was making so much noise they thought I was breaking things.

I had a mini-debate with one guy who swore I needed to unhook the bars before backing up. I told him I didn't. He said the Dealer told him he had to.

I asked if he had the same hitch.
Yes.
An Equalizer hitch?
Yes.
Just like this one?
Yes... except that mine has chains and a little ball (blah, blah)
Oh, then it's not the same right?
Well, maybe not exactly but it sounds like you are going to break something. I think you should unhook them.
Okay. Thanks for your help...SMH

I think I might try taking the jackets off since greasing the sockets seemed to be the ticket for me. The only thing is, even with no rain, they start to squeak again at the end of a pull over a couple of hours and I have to re-grease.

What are you guys using for grease - anything special?
I can understand your frustration and commend you on your "restraint" to not tell them..... But seriously I wouldn't be embarrassed about it, its all good!

I use WD-40 white lithium grease. just a light coat on all moving parts and it isn't too noisy. I know others use a spray graphite and I'm thinking of switching to that...it will work itself into the pores and keep everything moving smoothly.
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Old 07-30-2015, 08:07 PM   #9
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Been using the equalizer for the past 4 months. 2 months without the jackets and a good bit of noise on tighter turns. Purchased the jackets and the noise is almost non-existant. With and without the jackets I get absolutely no sway towing my fully loaded 7500 # Hemishere 263RL.
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Old 07-30-2015, 08:58 PM   #10
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Thanks for all of the responses!

I have a trip coming up next week and I will be going through the Columbia Gorge in Oregon. If you have ever been there, you know you need as much sway control as possible. So I think I am going to run without the jackets on that jont. Then I will be traveling on a two lane road for about 70 miles where there are several 10 mph corners. I will throw the jackets on when I make that trek. I won't even need sway control then, just weight distribution.


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Old 08-14-2015, 09:10 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by tmhudg View Post
I think I might try taking the jackets off since greasing the sockets seemed to be the ticket for me.
Just to follow up on this; I did take the bracket jackets off for my lat trip. There was no change in the noise - it has been pretty quiet since I started lubing the bar sockets - and no change in the sway that I could tell. The only thing I noticed was that there seemed to be just a touch of "float" on the TV steering. This makes sense since removing the jackets drops the bars down about 1/4 inch at the brackets.

For the return trip, I put the jackets back on and the TV steering felt much better. I'm going to leave them on.
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Old 08-14-2015, 07:30 PM   #12
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Is it just me or is the equalizer the messiest hitch ever ? I grease the ball and bar sockets. I got grease everywhere , Maybe I over grease it but too much can`t hurt right?
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Old 08-14-2015, 08:35 PM   #13
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Maybe it's just terminology, but I don't grease the sockets I grease the pivot points above and below the sockets. To me the sockets are the square openings that the bars slide into. There's no relative motion between the bar and socket so no lube is required.
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Old 08-16-2015, 04:55 AM   #14
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Yeah, when I said I greased the sockets, I meant the pivot points above and below. As for the mess, I agree, it can be messy (but I think that's the case with anything involving grease basically).

When picking up the hitch head, the underside of the ball platform is an obvious hand-hold and that's the top surface of the bar sockets - so it gets greasy. I have an old pair of leather work gloves that I've dedicated to "hitch work" so it helps but I still always seem to get some grease on me.

I've just recently purchased a "handle" that fits over the ball so you can pick it up without having to touch the hitch. We'll see how that works.
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Old 08-16-2015, 06:04 PM   #15
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I worded it wrong , I grease the pivot points top and bottom . Not inside the tube where the bar goes.
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Old 08-16-2015, 07:13 PM   #16
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Equalizer bracket jackets?

Been there done that...even with the jackets put some grease on them and the vertical part of the L-bracket that the bars rub on. Also, keep the ball clean and greased. This in addition to the pivot points. You'll be lucky not to have any noise for a couple of trips. Wash repeat and rinse 😀
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Old 08-16-2015, 07:16 PM   #17
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Equalizer bracket jackets?

Also, leave the bars on the head and spread them a little. Pickup a few inches from the head. You can pick the whole thing up like wheelbarrow and move it around. Then you are not taking as much apart or touching the grease. It balances well👍
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Old 08-16-2015, 08:14 PM   #18
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Been there done that...even with the jackets put some grease on them and the vertical part of the L-bracket that the bars rub on. Also, keep the ball clean and greased. This in addition to the pivot points. You'll be lucky not to have any noise for a couple of trips. Wash repeat and rinse 😀
I use white lithium grease in a spray can and lube the pivot points on mine before each trip. All the squeak and creak are gone for the duration of the trip (usually only 3-4 days at a time). I also have the quiet jackets. Works for me.
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:27 AM   #19
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I've had the jackets for 3 years and have been happy. I'm going to switch to the new-style L-pins (and jackets) so the top of the L-pin won't continue to wear into my bars (they are rounded off now).

Word to others:
I have been lazy the last 2 years, and have not been greasing the sockets (top and bottom surfaces). I think I've paid the price, as they have apparently worn to the point that I can move them by hand (even with socket bolts overtorqued). The rig does not seem as stable as before. After making right turns, it continues to pull hard to the right, until I make a left-steer-correction with the wheel.
I need to see if Equal-I-zer will sell me new sockets, hopefully without having to buy the entire head.
Don't let this happen to you. Grease as directed.
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:48 AM   #20
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...I think I've paid the price, as they have apparently worn to the point that I can move them by hand (even with socket bolts overtorqued). The rig does not seem as stable as before. After making right turns, it continues to pull hard to the right, until I make a left-steer-correction with the wheel.
I need to see if Equal-I-zer will sell me new sockets, hopefully without having to buy the entire head.
Don't let this happen to you. Grease as directed.
I wonder if you could put a washer between the socket and the hitch plate to give you something to fill the gap?
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