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Old 04-21-2019, 11:56 AM   #1
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Towing tips

Hi all,
Still pretty new to RVing and have a question about towing. I drive a 2012 Ford F-250 with a 6.7 Turbo Diesel, rated to tow around 12,500#. I have new Bilstein shocks all around and I use an e2 hitch to help with sway. My 33' Apex Ultra Lite, loaded weighs around 11K#.

Why is it that when I start to drive I get a tugging back and forth sensation and the same when I go over small bumps on the interstate? I thought my truck would pull this thing with almost no effort. I either have some work to do to the truck or I need to learn how to drive with a 33' TT connected.

Thanks for any advice/suggestions!
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Old 04-21-2019, 12:10 PM   #2
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Hi all,
Still pretty new to RVing and have a question about towing. I drive a 2012 Ford F-250 with a 6.7 Turbo Diesel, rated to tow around 12,500#. I have new Bilstein shocks all around and I use an e2 hitch to help with sway. My 33' Apex Ultra Lite, loaded weighs around 11K#.

Why is it that when I start to drive I get a tugging back and forth sensation and the same when I go over small bumps on the interstate? I thought my truck would pull this thing with almost no effort. I either have some work to do to the truck or I need to learn how to drive with a 33' TT connected.

Thanks for any advice/suggestions!
It sounds like your trailer brake engaging. May need adjusting.
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Old 04-21-2019, 12:14 PM   #3
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Hard to say if the chucking you are feeling is normal or not.
What you can do is check to ensure your hitch is set up correctly and there is no ball slop.
Then check your hitch weight to ensure it's not too light. Might have to adjust load. I know I have slight chucking if I have too much weight toward the rear of the RV (making hitch weight too light).
Most handling problems I have come across are related to pin/ball weight and load positioning.
I'm sure you will get some other ideas on this forum. Lots of experience on FRF!
Good luck and have fun!
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Old 04-21-2019, 12:24 PM   #4
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Sounds like your WDH isn't set up correctly.

If you don't know how to do it, find a local trailer hitch shop (not an RV dealership) that knows their stuff so they can show you how to do it right.
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Old 04-21-2019, 12:36 PM   #5
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It could be your hitch shank moving around in the TV receiver, especially if you have a reducing sleeve. With every bump and change in speed the hitch moves up and down, side-to-side, or front-to-back. Hitch clamps are available to take up any slack.

I have a 2-1/2" receiver with a 2" hitch shank which requires a reducing sleeve. I also use a 2-1/2" hitch clamp that I got on Amazon and it makes for a very solid connection between the TV and TT.
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Old 04-21-2019, 01:00 PM   #6
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What tire pressure are you using on the trailer? If ST, you want them inflated to max. sidewall. Tires on our F250 are LRE and for towing I use 80 psi rear, and 75 front. If you ask what psi to use on the truck, you will get answers all over the map.

Your TW is going to being around 1400 lbs and maybe more plus allow 100 lbs for the WDH. What payload have you added in the truck? What is the payload capacity of the truck and have you taken truck & trailer to a scale (both fully loaded for camping)?

How did you adjust the spring bars on the WDH - front fender height measurement? How much weight have you restored onto the steer axle? You can also adjust weight distribution by going to a scale. Sounds like you may need to tighten up the spring bars. I have ours back to within 1/4" but newer truck specs call for only 50% load restoration. No reason I've seen why not to go above that.

Have you got the TT set up level to slightly nose down? I found setting the shank for slightly nose down was a fair bit better than level. Had to get a ball with 1" rise to make it work.

Sometimes there's no one single thing that makes a significant change and can be a number of factors that all add up and work together.
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Old 04-21-2019, 02:15 PM   #7
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IMHO, the E2 isn't enough for a 11k 33' trailer. You should have gotten its big brother, the 4 point Equal-i-zer WDH, for that size trailer.
Let me guess, your dealer didn't carry the 4pt Equal-i-zer, just the E2.
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Old 04-21-2019, 02:19 PM   #8
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Lots of good advice above.

I would run through the setup again and verify the measurements. Then I would scale the truck and trailer to see what the actual weights are.

Is the E2 rated for that weight? I didnít think it went that high?

Bob
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Old 04-21-2019, 04:01 PM   #9
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The feeling you get when starting out may be related to what many refer to as 'launch shudder' caused by a slight misalignment of the driveshaft if the truck squats more than an inch or so.

It drove me crazy to the point that I added airbags to eliminate the TV squat caused by our 5th wheel trailer simply to get rid of the annoying 'launch shudder' at take off.

However, you may be able to fix both issues with adjustments to your WDH.
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Old 04-21-2019, 05:38 PM   #10
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Towing Tips-Thanks!

Thanks for all the tips and ideas. Although I have to say that I'm more confused now than I was earlier with all the talk about hitch weight and TW, ST and LRE tire pressures.....

These are the specs on my trailer:

UVW-5,720
Hitch Weight-715
Carrying capacity-1,880
GVWR-7600

Is there some sort of formula to figure out how to set this WDH up? My dealership did it and after all of these responses to my original thread I'm not sure it was done correctly.

My e2 WDH is rated at 10k# so it would seem that it is more than capable. I've read that the towing capacity of my truck is 12.5k#

Is there a way to adjust the hitch weight and Tongue Weight? Im wondering if airbags would help or maybe a Roadmaster Active Suspension system.

Anyway, I'll try to get to a scale and see what she weighs, but I guess I need to figure out the TW HW and all the other alphabet soup

Is there a simple guide to walk a newbie through all of this?

Thanks again everyone.
Chris
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Old 04-21-2019, 06:08 PM   #11
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In your first post, you said the trailer was 11K#. Your last post said GVWR is 7600. So that could be your first problem. Too much weight.

It could also be the E2 isn't beefy enough for you.

When we moved up in trailers to the 272RL (about 33' and 845' TW) we picked it up with all our stuff loaded in the truck and took it directly to the campground to try it out. I used the E2 10K/1K set up correctly and it towed very well. Even in high wind, no problem.

At the campground I set the trailer up and rearranged all the stuff into storage (most storage is front) and it pushed the tongue weight to over 1k# (I have a tongue scale). So I moved some stuff around got it just under 1k#. On the trip home it started porpoising really badly on the highway, so I pulled over and made adjustments to the L brackets and it fixed it. But those 1K# spring bars just aren't beefy enough for that trailer. So I immediately ordered an E4 14K system.

Don't know if that's your issue, but if 11K# is correct, you're likely overtaxing those spring bars (and your trailer for that matter).
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Old 04-21-2019, 06:29 PM   #12
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Re: towing tips

IchLiebeBier,
Thanks. Yeah I had the wrong weight. The GVWR 7600 Is from the booklet I got from the dealer, so I think the 10k# WDH should be enough right? Is there something Iím missing? How do I determine hitch weight? Is that the same as the tongue weight? This is where Iím confused.

Thanks again.
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Old 04-21-2019, 06:31 PM   #13
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Like other suggestions in previous posts, take it to an independent hitch/service shop and get help with the hitch setup and explanation. Easy. If you ask them for help fixing something that someone else screwed up, it's amazing what you can learn
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Old 04-21-2019, 06:54 PM   #14
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IchLiebeBier,
Thanks. Yeah I had the wrong weight. The GVWR 7600 Is from the booklet I got from the dealer, so I think the 10k# WDH should be enough right? Is there something I’m missing? How do I determine hitch weight? Is that the same as the tongue weight? This is where I’m confused.

Thanks again.
It SHOULD be, but if the bulk of your storage is up front, you could easily over tax the 1K bars.

Hitch weight and tongue weight are used interchangeably by folks. I try to use tongue weight when talking about the trailer, and hitch weight when talking about everything applied to the back of the truck. So the way I think of it is: tongue weight is total trailer weight applied down at the coupler (including cargo), with nothing else factored in. Hitch weight is the weight of the tongue, the weight of the hitch and bars, and the weight of anything on the truck sitting behind the rear axle.

So, your 1K rated bars have to support a total hitch weight of 1K# or less. That's your trailer dry tongue weight (say around 760); any cargo pushing down on your tongue; your E2 hitch head and bars (around 120 or so total); and anything behind the rear axle of the truck. So you can see how quickly you can get to the 1K# limit.

If you can, go back to the dealer and get them to upgrade you to the E4, or at least to the 1200# bars. That should make the experience easier. I wished I had gotten the E4 the whole time I had the E2. Now I have it and am glad I did.

BTW, I'd also recommend getting the sway bracket jackets for the L Brackets. Made a world of difference in noise.
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