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Old 12-04-2020, 01:22 PM   #1
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Towing Without WD Bars

I have an employee at my work that asked me what I thought of towing without the WD bars for about 2.5 miles. Heís not going on the freeway, and probably wonít exceed 35 mph. Heís picking it up from winterizing.

I advised him to NOT do it. What are your thoughts on on this?
Thanks!
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Old 12-04-2020, 01:30 PM   #2
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Are the wd bars that hard to hook up? I donít think itís a great idea, and probably would put some undue strain in places. Then there is what if an accident occurs questions.

Iíve moved mine without the bars when setting up at the campground, and once with my old trailer/truck combo when I had to take it to the dump site in the middle of a trip. Not on the open road though.
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Old 12-04-2020, 01:36 PM   #3
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It's impossible to guess without information about the tow vehicle and the trailer being towed. Uncle Gene never used WD bars when he towed his little trailer with an F250.
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Old 12-04-2020, 01:45 PM   #4
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It's impossible to guess without information about the tow vehicle and the trailer being towed. Uncle Gene never used WD bars when he towed his little trailer with an F250.
Agree that without more information it's impossible to give a correct answer.

One thing worth noting is that almost all hitches have a label on them listing tongue weight max. Usually in two parts, without WDH and With. If it was designed to carry load distributed to the frame then it's wise to hook the bars up. If you feel you know more than the engineers who designed the truck/hitch combo, and added the label, then just go for it and take your chances.

A lit of difference between a receiver mounted on the back of a Ford Ranger and a F450. My neighbor has an F-450 with a pintle hitch on the back and he tows with no WDH, often with an fairly large excavator.

A few minutes hooking up the WDH spring bars could just possibly save a lot more time and money dealing with repairs.
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Old 12-04-2020, 02:03 PM   #5
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Thank you everyone for your responses. I just thought that maybe I’d gone and given this young man a bad answer. You all confirmed that my thought process was indeed correct!
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Old 12-04-2020, 02:14 PM   #6
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Just my opinion. If towing at under 35 mph, almost zero chance of a sway issue. So then it comes down to how much weight is still on the front axle. A year or two back I saw a landscape crew go thru the intersection ahead of me, the front tires left the ground as they went over the crown in the road!
So it will depend on how heavy the tongue is on the trailer. Can the owner put some additional wight aft of the trailer axle to reduce TW, which won't be that important at 35 MPH. Has he ever weighed the front axle without WD on to give a comparison to how much weight the WD bars return?

Going slow, AND if there is still a fair amount of weight on the front axle, I'd be willing to do a 2.5 mile drive.
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Old 12-04-2020, 02:24 PM   #7
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Yep, without more information on tow vehicle and trailer, there's no way to give a definitive answer.
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Old 12-04-2020, 02:42 PM   #8
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Thank you everyone for your responses. I just thought that maybe Iíd gone and given this young man a bad answer. You all confirmed that my thought process was indeed correct!
No... we didnít confirm your thought process was correct. We said we couldnít tell without specifics.
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Old 12-04-2020, 02:43 PM   #9
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Just my opinion. If towing at under 35 mph, almost zero chance of a sway issue. So then it comes down to how much weight is still on the front axle. A year or two back I saw a landscape crew go thru the intersection ahead of me, the front tires left the ground as they went over the crown in the road!
So it will depend on how heavy the tongue is on the trailer. Can the owner put some additional wight aft of the trailer axle to reduce TW, which won't be that important at 35 MPH. Has he ever weighed the front axle without WD on to give a comparison to how much weight the WD bars return?

Going slow, AND if there is still a fair amount of weight on the front axle, I'd be willing to do a 2.5 mile drive.
Somehow "going slow' during the move is counterintuitive for a person who is trying to save 5 minutes by not hooking up the WDH "bars".
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Old 12-04-2020, 06:07 PM   #10
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It's impossible to guess without information about the tow vehicle and the trailer being towed. Uncle Gene never used WD bars when he towed his little trailer with an F250.
I agree as well. Our nearest campground is the same distance as the OP, and the fastest speed we hit is about 40mph for about 100' before I turn left. With a 6600lb trailer behind an HD truck I'm not worried about it. The next nearest campground is 28km and I always put the bars on for that - mostly because the road isn't that smooth and the WDH really makes for nicer towing.
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Old 12-04-2020, 06:17 PM   #11
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like others have said it's depends . a 3/4 with a tt that weighs much less then max i would do it no problem . WDH are not a requirement if within hitch specs and there are many that never use one .
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Old 12-04-2020, 07:23 PM   #12
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I always err on the side of caution when giving advice about these types of matters. Would it be helpful to know what he is towing and what with? Sure. At the end of the day if he is towing a 23 ft 3000 lb trailer with a f350, does anyone think he would really ask this question?

If he is asking the question, he is unsure, and probably for good reason. Again, it must take literally 5 min if not less to attach 2 wdh bars. Why not do it anyways? I canít think of an answer that would persuade me otherwise.

Like I said, I did do this pulling 5 mph in the campground to dump. No good answer to that other than I was purely lazy. We were all set up, I had to break down camp to go dump, which takes some time. If I was just pulling it out of the storage lot? 2 minutes to put the bars on and go yes 2-3 miles to my house on 35-45mph roads.
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Old 12-04-2020, 09:13 PM   #13
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Yes of course it is possible to tow without the WD bars. The vast majority of trailers being towed in this country are done so without a WDH. It’s only on Internet RV forums that it’s taboo to do so due to lack of knowledge and understanding. Proper trailer design and loading is the key to doing it safely. The RV trailer does makes it a bit more challenging with it’s high amount of fixed weight distribution which is why design and floor plan layout should be top priority. Very few people select a RV TT with these considerations in mind and it’s no doubt many trailers are indeed poorly designed. But hey all you need is a good WDH and that makes everything perfect, doesn’t it?
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Old 12-04-2020, 09:39 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by SailorSam20500 View Post
Just my opinion. If towing at under 35 mph, almost zero chance of a sway issue. So then it comes down to how much weight is still on the front axle. A year or two back I saw a landscape crew go thru the intersection ahead of me, the front tires left the ground as they went over the crown in the road!
So it will depend on how heavy the tongue is on the trailer. Can the owner put some additional wight aft of the trailer axle to reduce TW, which won't be that important at 35 MPH. Has he ever weighed the front axle without WD on to give a comparison to how much weight the WD bars return?

Going slow, AND if there is still a fair amount of weight on the front axle, I'd be willing to do a 2.5 mile drive.
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Somehow "going slow' during the move is counterintuitive for a person who is trying to save 5 minutes by not hooking up the WDH "bars".
Not to mention loading up extra weight at the back of the trailer - seems like hooking up the bars would be *way* faster and easier.
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Old 12-04-2020, 10:26 PM   #15
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Lacking the specifications of the TV and the trailer, only one sensible answer should prevail -- if the trailer is normally towed with a WD hitch with the bars attached, then it should always be towed with them in place -- to do otherwise makes no sense to me and the OP might save his friendship by advising that approach, especially if something did go wrong if he had advised not to use the bars.
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Old 12-04-2020, 10:44 PM   #16
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[QUOTE=Mr. Dan;2460773]It's impossible to guess without information about the tow vehicle and the trailer being towed.

Big Truck, little trailer, no problem.
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Old 12-04-2020, 10:50 PM   #17
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I moved mine, 8000lbs several times without full hookup. farthest was about 9 miles.
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Old 12-05-2020, 01:17 PM   #18
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My thoughts are if they are required for normal towing then they should be used no matter how far you are going. The minimal time it takes to hook them up is well worth it to be safe at any speed.
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Old 12-05-2020, 01:56 PM   #19
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Just established the fact

Quote:
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Somehow "going slow' during the move is counterintuitive for a person who is trying to save 5 minutes by not hooking up the WDH "bars".
Without even trying TitanMike just established the fact he is indeed a very wise man. Wisdom - More than we may ever know.
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Old 12-05-2020, 03:37 PM   #20
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Again as stated, need specs, I don't have a WDH and never had an issue.
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