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Old 05-10-2017, 06:27 PM   #1
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Extreme tongue weight?

TV: 20014 GMC Sierra CC 5.3 auto short bed. TT: 2015 Coachmen Freedom Express 310BHDS. Today I did my experiment with finding the tongue weight. I used the scale, beam (4x4), pipe method. Now IF I did everything correctly, and I did it twice with the same reading, my tongue weight on this TT is at 1600#. That seems a bit excessive to me. The distance between the two (2) pieces of pipe was five foot (5') with the distance from one pipe to the center of the tongue jack at twelve inches (12"). The scale topped out at 320# each time. The fresh water tank is empty, there are some items in the front storage area but I'm betting not over 200# worth total. The sticker on the factory trailer hitch states that the maximum tongue weight is not to exceed 1200#. Does this TT tongue weight sound excessive to anyone else?
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Old 05-10-2017, 06:34 PM   #2
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TV: 20014 GMC Sierra CC 5.3 auto short bed. TT: 2015 Coachmen Freedom Express 310BHDS. Today I did my experiment with finding the tongue weight. I used the scale, beam (4x4), pipe method. Now IF I did everything correctly, and I did it twice with the same reading, my tongue weight on this TT is at 1600#. That seems a bit excessive to me. The distance between the two (2) pieces of pipe was five foot (5') with the distance from one pipe to the center of the tongue jack at twelve inches (12"). The scale topped out at 320# each time. The fresh water tank is empty, there are some items in the front storage area but I'm betting not over 200# worth total. The sticker on the factory trailer hitch states that the maximum tongue weight is not to exceed 1200#. Does this TT tongue weight sound excessive to anyone else?


I have a 37-1/2' TT and my tongue weight was over 1,600 lbs. although I did not have anything real heavy in the front (normal items, but do add up in weight), I was concerned due to the less-than-exciting weld job where the tongue attaches to the main frame. A WDH adds a ton of pressure to this area. Never a concern with my truck though. The TT always tows nice.

I carry tools with me in the bunkhouse and limit what I carry up front. I like to stay around 1,500 or less. I have since upgraded to twin T105s so I am even more sensitive to weight up front.
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Old 05-10-2017, 06:40 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thurman View Post
TV: 20014 GMC Sierra CC 5.3 auto short bed. TT: 2015 Coachmen Freedom Express 310BHDS. Today I did my experiment with finding the tongue weight. I used the scale, beam (4x4), pipe method. Now IF I did everything correctly, and I did it twice with the same reading, my tongue weight on this TT is at 1600#. That seems a bit excessive to me. The distance between the two (2) pieces of pipe was five foot (5') with the distance from one pipe to the center of the tongue jack at twelve inches (12"). The scale topped out at 320# each time. The fresh water tank is empty, there are some items in the front storage area but I'm betting not over 200# worth total. The sticker on the factory trailer hitch states that the maximum tongue weight is not to exceed 1200#. Does this TT tongue weight sound excessive to anyone else?
Yes 1600# seems excessive . I would ? your method . get a shur line tongue scale or go get weighed
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Old 05-10-2017, 06:43 PM   #4
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It does seems heavy. When you did your weight, did you made sure the trailer frame was same height from ground at front and rear? If higher in front, it will put more weight on scale....
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Old 05-11-2017, 07:08 AM   #5
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Trailer was as leveled as my old machinist level could indicate both side-to-side and front-to-back. Level was set in the approximate center of unit. I'm thinking I will remove all the stuff in the front storage space and try this again. Possibly get a better idea of how much weight is in that space. One problem in this town is that there are no public use scale's. There is a CAT scale at a truck stop but they have signs stating NO PUBLIC WEIGHING and I have talked to others who took their RV's there and were turned away. Life is just full of adventures, , ,
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Old 05-11-2017, 07:13 AM   #6
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What I'm saying is frame has to be same distance to ground front and back. If you level trailer itself by using level inside on the floor, it might be high in the front compare to your axles and making an increase tongue weight...or you can go to a CatScale near you...

https://catscale.com/cat-scale-locat...s=2&cmdSearch=
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Old 05-11-2017, 07:15 AM   #7
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I have the exact same trailer just one model year newer and yes, that number seems quite high. I've never actually weighed it but the dealer who set up my WDH used 800 - 1200lb torsion bars.
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Old 05-11-2017, 07:15 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thurman View Post
Trailer was as leveled as my old machinist level could indicate both side-to-side and front-to-back. Level was set in the approximate center of unit. I'm thinking I will remove all the stuff in the front storage space and try this again. Possibly get a better idea of how much weight is in that space. One problem in this town is that there are no public use scale's. There is a CAT scale at a truck stop but they have signs stating NO PUBLIC WEIGHING and I have talked to others who took their RV's there and were turned away. Life is just full of adventures, , ,
Check with any shipping companies in the area, they may let you use thier scales for a small fee.
Also check the county landfill, they should at least let you get a total rig wt for a token fee (ours is $3.00) though they probably wouldn't let you disconnect, but it wouldn't hurt to ask! LOL! Good luck!
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Old 05-11-2017, 07:16 AM   #9
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Take a couple of trips to the truck scale. Once with just the truck and once with the trailer. Both need to loaded like you are traveling, and make sure the fuel level is full on the truck. That is pretty much the one sure-fire way to see if you are correct. Really, they are easy to use and the total of about $20 you spend is worth it (less if you use a discount card for the station you go to).
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Old 05-12-2017, 08:09 AM   #10
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Scale your vehicles.
Trailer tongue weight should be 12-15 % for TT
20-25% 5ther.
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Old 05-12-2017, 10:20 AM   #11
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The TT was leveled with a level, not measuring from frame to driveway, that wouldn't be any good as my driveway slopes from front to back. With the TT level there is more distance from the rear to the concrete than at the front. A discussion with a friend and I found out that there is a truck stop some 37 miles from me that will do "public weighing" for a $10 fee. I don't really want to take the TT that far just to weigh it but I'm really wanting to know if this bathroom scale method is anywhere near the real weight. We do have a county operated landfill and I have seen them turn away everything that is not household garbage. There is a private "inert" landfill we have to take construction debris, old appliances, yard debris, anything that is not household garbage. I think one of the City Commissioner's owns it
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Old 05-12-2017, 10:51 AM   #12
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The TT was leveled with a level, not measuring from frame to driveway, that wouldn't be any good as my driveway slopes from front to back. With the TT level there is more distance from the rear to the concrete than at the front. A discussion with a friend and I found out that there is a truck stop some 37 miles from me that will do "public weighing" for a $10 fee. I don't really want to take the TT that far just to weigh it but I'm really wanting to know if this bathroom scale method is anywhere near the real weight. We do have a county operated landfill and I have seen them turn away everything that is not household garbage. There is a private "inert" landfill we have to take construction debris, old appliances, yard debris, anything that is not household garbage. I think one of the City Commissioner's owns it


Done properly, the bathroom scale method is accurate. It is simply math. However, there are some things to be aware of:
The distances need to be exact. Any variances will affect the math and accuracy.
The trailer should be on level ground. This is especially true for multi-axle.
The trailer should be level.
The scale and all beams should be level.
Ideally, rollers should be used under both ends of the beam to prevent any binding. Any sort of binding can affect down-pressure on the scale.
All wheel chocks should be removed. Again, to remove any binding.
The tongue jack should be totally perpendicular to the beam. This is to ensure straight down pressure and not any lateral. If the trailer is completely level and the beam/scale is level this will be true.

Basically, you are wanting smooth, free movement of the tongue straight down on the beam... and smooth, free movement straight down on the scale. Any binding/resistance in any way can affect the weight measurement. An illustration of this is If you stood on a scale while leaning against a wall, the weight would be incorrect.

I have a tongue scale, however you have to be careful with that too... to ensure a smooth accurate measurement.
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