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Old 08-01-2017, 11:35 AM   #1
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Tow hitch bottom out

Looking for possible solutions outside of having to put boards down in my driveway.

I've got a 2015 Yukon and towing a 2015 Coachman Clipper. The dealer installed a 9inch drop WD hitch and a Husky sway bar system. I've had nothing but problems with this thing dragging and hitting off the bottom of the hitch when I backup into my driveway.

Now that I just built a new driveway last week, we went out and upon returning, the same thing happened again, nice scrape in my brand new drive.

Can anything be done about this? Can I put the wheel on the pin when coming up the drive or will it bend and break? Just need something to give it a little extra clearance.
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Old 08-01-2017, 11:45 AM   #2
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Can you flip the hitch over and still get the required height? I towed with an Escalade, and it required a bit of rise in the hitch....no drop.
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Old 08-01-2017, 12:06 PM   #3
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I'm following this thread due to my similar problem. I swapped out the Fastway stock 12" shank for their only 18" because I needed the tailgate clearance. That shank unfortunately has a 7" drop. Facing up the ball is about 4" too high in the lowest position. Flipped, the ball is about 2" too low in the highest position and the shank drop regularly bottoms out. I've therefore been running with the drop facing up, but 4" too high prevents an optional WDH setup. My RV repair guy suggested lifting the truck, which I can't do as I won't fit in my garage with even a 2" lift, or installing airbags to raise the bed of my truck so that I may use the shank facing downward. Ideas?
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Old 08-01-2017, 12:24 PM   #4
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Tow hitch bottom out

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This is my shank. I don't think I can reverse and still have it work.
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Old 08-01-2017, 12:32 PM   #5
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My in laws have the same issue. They have a pretty steep incline driveway. When I say steep a couple winters ago my wife car was parked on it and it was snowing, we got a knock on the door a few minutes later and the car was in the road. Anyways they scrape every time and pretty bad. My father in law ended up getting some heavy duty caster wheels (steel they hold about 1000 lbs each) from northern tools for the rear. For the front he used a steel plate with 4 casters and some bolts that make a holder area to hold the jack pad in place. He gets to a certain point on the driveway and uses the plate. I guess it works pretty slick from what he says. I personally have not seen it used yet but it looks like it would work pretty good. Otherwise I would see about flipping you hitch or go to the store and buy a receiver that has a high lift on it. Just some ideas for you.
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Old 08-01-2017, 12:58 PM   #6
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Putting some sort of wheel under the shank would not be good. It would likely be so tall that by the time it rises onto the driveway, you might lose drive wheel traction. But if 4x4, wouldn't be a problem. Just have to be strong enough.


Could you transfer more weight? Check your WD setup, and be sure the front wheel well height when all is hooked up, is the same as before you attached the trailer. if you are still running with the front a bit higher, you can make adjustment to transfer more weight to the front, which will lift the coupler a bit more.


If you want to try running with more front weight than stock (lower front wheel well than stock, to get even more coupler lift), you should get an actual loaded front axle weight measurement, to be sure you do not exceed the front GAWR.


Other than transferring more weight, and looking at your pic, the only other help I can think of would be some very long ramps for the drive axle.


Or get 4-6 heavy friends...3 standing on the front bumper, and 3 on the rear camper bumper.


Oooo, had another idea. You know those magic plastic furniture pads, that let you slide heavy furniture across the floor without damage....(bear with me). I wonder if a VERY hard plastic insert plug could be made for the bottom of the shank. This could be a sacrificial layer, that would wear away with use, but not damage the concrete.
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Old 08-01-2017, 06:54 PM   #7
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Just out of curiosity, does your trailer sit level when attached to your Yukon? That looks like a lot of drop...my Escalade ball height was above the hitch receiver to compensate for sag.
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Old 08-01-2017, 07:07 PM   #8
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That hitch has a ridiculous amount of under hang.
I would A: Try to find a hitch with less under hang.
B: Check to be sure that the trailer is level and not nose low.
C: see if you can flip the axle to raise the trailer/ hitch while still staying level.
D: Boards under the rear wheels.
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Old 08-02-2017, 07:47 AM   #9
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Tow hitch bottom out

So I took some measurements.
From the ground to the inside top of my Yukon hitch was 26 inches.
From the ground to the bottom of the ball Receiver was 21 3/4 inches.

Would that give me a 4 inch drop???
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Old 08-02-2017, 07:57 AM   #10
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We had a similar issue with our last TT. Had the driveway redone with less of a slope as well and it still hit. Our solution was to raise the trailer with a 3inch lift kit. This enabled us to swap the hitch from down to up and also lift the back end of the trailer so it wouldn't come close when we were backing up. This was the cheaper option than lifting the TV.
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Old 08-02-2017, 01:04 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarjent View Post
So I took some measurements.
From the ground to the inside top of my Yukon hitch was 26 inches.
From the ground to the bottom of the ball Receiver was 21 3/4 inches.

Would that give me a 4 inch drop???
Measure from the top of the ball to the ground. Then measure from the top of the ball receiver on the tongue to the ground with the trailer level. The top of the ball should be between 1 to 2 inches HIGHER than the top of the ball receiver if the hitch is correctly set up. There are videos on YouTube that show you how to do this. It isn't that hard if you have a level location available and some basic 1/2" drive sockets and a couple of wrenches. If is still way off, you may need to get a lift kit on the trailer, not the truck. Lifting the truck will only compound the problem.
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Old 08-02-2017, 04:21 PM   #12
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Others have asked, so I'm repeating.
When hooked up and on a level area of road...
Is the trailer level fore-and-aft? Or is the tongue low?

Does the rear bumper or undercarriage of the trailer drag as it leaves the driveway, or does it clear well?

Is the tow vehicle level when hitched? If the rear is sagging, can you adjust the hitch to move more load to the front axle on the TV?

If the trailer is not level, perhaps raising the "drop" one or two bolt holes will help.

I tow a high-wall PUP with a 4x4 pickup, and I only have a 3" drop. With airbags, the whole mess is pretty level. With 30 pounds in the bags, my tongue is just a bit higher than the rear bumper on the trailer. I don't need a weight distribution hitch with this light trailer.

If you are level and setup properly, then this is a matter of the driveway pitch angle compared to the road surface.
If that's the case, perhaps a set of Firestone Airbags would make it possible for you to jack up the rear of your TV as you enter and exit the driveway, then let the air out once you're clear of the driveway. If you carry an air compressor like this Viar - https://smile.amazon.com/Viair-93-VI...air+compressor - it will make short work of filling the bags without the expense of having a built-in inflator for the bags alone. Just a thought.
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Old 08-02-2017, 07:21 PM   #13
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I have the same wdh, I really like it, we tow with a 08 suburban LTZ package, my truck has airbags that level it up under load. I back up the camper once with out the bars and it scrape with the camper power tonge jack. After I installed the bars, the camper level up and No more scraping. You may have a driveway that is too steep and will scrape, and you may actually need the shank they sold you. Check out my set up.... Hope it helps.


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Old 08-02-2017, 08:52 PM   #14
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I had a RV hitch metal wheel (ordered from amazon.com) welded on the bottom of my hitch for exactly the same reason, now, instead of dragging the hitch, the wheel engages and rolls along the ground. No more scrapping). The wheel even has a zerk fitting in the axle bolt for grease. They even make a non-weld on wheel that uses the hitch-pin, but it does not work for all applications (it didn't work for me, so I went with the weld-on version)! I can give you a deal on my non-weld on unit

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Old 08-02-2017, 10:20 PM   #15
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I had this issue but I only hit when the WDH bars are not hooked up. Two things solved my problem.

1. Timbrens removed some of the say
2. Boards on the curb to lift 1.5"

Not sure this gets you there as my issue was only at the curb. Best of luck.
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Old 08-02-2017, 10:27 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FirstTracks View Post
I'm following this thread due to my similar problem. I swapped out the Fastway stock 12" shank for their only 18" because I needed the tailgate clearance. That shank unfortunately has a 7" drop. Facing up the ball is about 4" too high in the lowest position. Flipped, the ball is about 2" too low in the highest position and the shank drop regularly bottoms out. I've therefore been running with the drop facing up, but 4" too high prevents an optional WDH setup. My RV repair guy suggested lifting the truck, which I can't do as I won't fit in my garage with even a 2" lift, or installing airbags to raise the bed of my truck so that I may use the shank facing downward. Ideas?
For anyone with a similar situation to mine posted above, FYI I've had an email exchange with Fastway. Their rep suggested actually flipping the shank, cutting it off and using a taller hitch ball to make up for the 2" too low:

Quote:
Originally Posted by email from Fastway Trailer Products
It sounds like you may want to cut the shank then which you can do. If you do decide to cut it I recommend not cutting above the top of the hole below the bottom hole you are using because the shank needs that metal to support the trailer weight.
My Evo is currently in the shop for some other repairs, so I'll have them cut the shank as I lack the tools to do so myself. That should allow me to finally level the puppy without the shank bottoming out on the road.
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Old 08-02-2017, 11:35 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FirstTracks View Post
For anyone with a similar situation to mine posted above, FYI I've had an email exchange with Fastway. Their rep suggested actually flipping the shank, cutting it off and using a taller hitch ball to make up for the 2" too low:



My Evo is currently in the shop for some other repairs, so I'll have them cut the shank as I lack the tools to do so myself. That should allow me to finally level the puppy without the shank bottoming out on the road.


Is that same tech going to take liability for anything that happens should a weld break, etc. This is not something I would be doing. I would be researching other companies to find a solution.
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Old 08-02-2017, 11:56 PM   #18
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Is that same tech going to take liability for anything that happens should a weld break, etc. This is not something I would be doing. I would be researching other companies to find a solution.
As a liability claim adjuster by profession, I get your point. However, my repair guy actually also suggested lopping it off.
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Old 08-03-2017, 01:13 AM   #19
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So, not sure if anyone has mentioned this, but in my previous post I failed to mention that I purchased a high-low hitch, also know as a drop-hitch. I used one to level out my tow-bar for my dingy tow.

If you know the exact drop you need based on a measurement of your current adjustable drop hitch, you can get a fixed high-low anywhere from a 1-inch drop to upwards of 10 inches.

Granted, the draw back is if you replace your tow vehicle, TT or just do suspension mods, you might have to get a new high-low hitch.

I only mention this as an alternative to having to modify (cut-off) the excess portion of the adjustable hitch.

Just an option to consider.
Mike

PS the weld-on hitch guard wheel I mentioned in my earlier post is welded on to my high-low hitch. Hitch dragging is a common issue with MH that are single real-axle due to the lengthy distance from the rear axle to the end of the coach. My drop hitch (for leveling) also lengthens that distance another 10 inches or so, having the wheel at the end of that length really is a "hitch-saver".

And, quite frankly, when the wheel is engaged with the ground, say from a steep driveway ingress or egress, I rather doubt that the tow vehicles rear axle spring/suspension would lift the rear (drive) wheels off the ground. Simple physics and adherence to max tongue weight would suggest that, even at maximum spring compression, the weight of the tow vehicle should be sufficient to keep the rear wheels grounded and that the point of "give" would be lifting of the TT tongue (which is the desirable effect).

You can also have two of those same wheels welded onto the rear frame of the TT to protect the back-end of your RV. The guy that welded mine for me told me he did that for his TT because, even though his hitch never dragged, sometimes the rear of TT did on steep inclines.

Just food for thought.
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Old 08-03-2017, 02:11 AM   #20
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Those things are low to begin with..

I would flip the trailer axle first.. That should ligt it high enough to fix your issue and use a smaller shank..

Single axle too. That trailers light. Put the nose higher a bit if needed if the axle flip is not enough..





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