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 > How to avoid getting blown all over the road

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Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 05/05/21 12:09pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Devo the dog wrote:

atreis wrote:

How heavy is the tongue? Tongue weight should be 11-15% of total trailer weight. If you don't have enough tongue weight when fully loaded, it'll be all over the road, and potentially very unsafe.

Being a toy hauler, too light of a tongue is also the most likely scenario.

This is what I'd guess is the problem. Tongue weight is too light.

One of my trailers is a 34 ft bumper pull and I always check it with a tongue weight scale.


Unless the OP's 1500lbs of "stuff" is ALL payload at or near the rear of the garage section of the camper, this is almost certainly not a light tongue weight scenario.
And at that, front storage compartment and fresh water are both forward or well forward of the axles. And "toys" will only reduce tongue weight maybe at a 50% rate max compared to their actual addition to the payload, just due to typical toyhauler axle placement.


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Grit dog

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Posted: 05/05/21 12:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Additionally, this could also be a case of a person's perception of what is "excessive". Everyone's experience and expectations are different. True story, Ram coil sprung trucks are squishy, but we're talking side loads, not longitudinal loads. Coils don't really have anything to do with side load on the hitch (hitch is low and centered), unless your track bar bushings are shot.

While that's alot of trailer for the type of suspension, I'd suggest the OP work to maybe try towing in the wind with a heavier truck. Friend or relative got a big boy truck to try out?
This will give the OP a frame of refence for the improvement to be expected.

Bottom line, some people freak out when a side wind hits. But it happens and trailers move. If you're freaking out when the semis are getting blown around, it's likely a stout wind and par for the course.
If you're concerned when the semis are tracking straight then it's the truck or your perception/expectation.

ktmrfs

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Posted: 05/05/21 02:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

are you sure the WD hitch is properly set up and transferring ENOUGH weight back to the front axle??

Several friends of mine complained of issues like yours and when I examined their setup the hitch was NOT transferring enough weight back to the front. so... the front end was lifted, camber was affected and the front end wandered to easily. Once the hitch was adjusted to put enough weight back on the front end the difference in handling was dramatic.

so, check and see if the front wheelwell height is the same or only slightly higher loaded than unloaded. You do NOT want it lower loaded,


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valhalla360

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Posted: 05/05/21 02:55pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

memtb wrote:

IMO .....the felt effects of a cross-wind are directly related to the square footage of the rv side wall area and the weight of the rv.


This brings up an important distinction.

In a good cross wind, you will get pushed side to side no matter what but it will be the whole rig. When a semi blows by you doing 80, you will feel the bow wave and then it immediately settles back into line.

It's sway where the trailer is just wobbling back and forth and doesn't want to go back in line that is an indicator of a problem.


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MyersAvionics

Iowa

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Posted: 05/06/21 07:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thank you for all the input. I added the airbags just as a recommendation from a friend. I sometimes forget to fill them up when towing and don't really notice a difference to be honest.

The plan at the moment is putting better tires on. It is currently at the shop getting the Bridgestone Dueler A/T Revo 3's installed. Then I'm going to load up the trailer and take it to a CAT scale and get it weighed; Once without the weight distribution and once with to see the different load points for the axels. At that point, I'll readjust as needed. I don't carry anything too heavy in the back. Just up to 3 dirt bikes (<700lbs). We then put all luggage and so forth in the front bedroom to help distribute the weight.

After doing the above, I'll take it for a test drive and see how it does.

If it's still white knuckled driving, I will spring for the ProPride hitch. That's a tough 3k bill to swallow for a hitch, but it's cheaper than a 60k+ truck.

Finally, if all else fails we have discussed selling the trailer and getting a toyhauler RV. Talking big bucks there, so I'd like to avoid that!

JRscooby

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Posted: 05/06/21 01:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MyersAvionics wrote:

Thank you for all the input. I added the airbags just as a recommendation from a friend. I sometimes forget to fill them up when towing and don't really notice a difference to be honest.

The plan at the moment is putting better tires on. It is currently at the shop getting the Bridgestone Dueler A/T Revo 3's installed. Then I'm going to load up the trailer and take it to a CAT scale and get it weighed; Once without the weight distribution and once with to see the different load points for the axels. At that point, I'll readjust as needed. I don't carry anything too heavy in the back. Just up to 3 dirt bikes (<700lbs). We then put all luggage and so forth in the front bedroom to help distribute the weight.

After doing the above, I'll take it for a test drive and see how it does.

If it's still white knuckled driving, I will spring for the ProPride hitch. That's a tough 3k bill to swallow for a hitch, but it's cheaper than a 60k+ truck.

Finally, if all else fails we have discussed selling the trailer and getting a toyhauler RV. Talking big bucks there, so I'd like to avoid that!


Your trip to the Cat. Make 1 pass, hooked up like you tow, another with just TV. I have never understood what useful info is gained with loose bars, but the change in weight of TV, and where that weight rides is important info.
BTW, if you tell them it is re-weigh for the 2nd (or more) passes only charge a fraction.

Grit dog

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Posted: 05/06/21 04:50pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lwiddis wrote:

Responders can't say "slow down" too many times. Check the tongue weight.


Exactly how slow should a guy drive? (This is a rhetorical question...)
And it aint tongue weight unless he's got some big toyz in the back.

valhalla360

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Posted: 05/07/21 06:22am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JRscooby wrote:

Your trip to the Cat. Make 1 pass, hooked up like you tow, another with just TV. I have never understood what useful info is gained with loose bars, but the change in weight of TV, and where that weight rides is important info.
BTW, if you tell them it is re-weigh for the 2nd (or more) passes only charge a fraction.


For an extra $2-3 get all the info.

It's technically possible to back calculate with just the 2 measures but beyond most people's understanding of how to calculate.

Mike134

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Posted: 05/07/21 06:33am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

valhalla360 wrote:

JRscooby wrote:

Your trip to the Cat. Make 1 pass, hooked up like you tow, another with just TV. I have never understood what useful info is gained with loose bars, but the change in weight of TV, and where that weight rides is important info.
BTW, if you tell them it is re-weigh for the 2nd (or more) passes only charge a fraction.


For an extra $2-3 get all the info.

It's technically possible to back calculate with just the 2 measures but beyond most people's understanding of how to calculate.


I don't see how that's possible because you'd have to guess at a variable. For example calculating tongue weight would be impossible from one pass with just the truck and the second pass with weight bars connected which will put weight on the front axle and ADD weight to the trailer axle. You'd have to guess what the tongue weight is.


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BarneyS

S.E. Lower Michigan

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Posted: 05/07/21 07:20am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Here is a post that I made quite a few years ago but it fits right in with this topic today.

Today, my wife and I were traveling home from our winter stay in Florida to Michigan. This was the 2nd day of the trip. We started out the morning South of Atlanta GA, and the winds all morning were out of the NW but not too bad. While going through southern Tennessee, we were passed by a smaller GM sport utility truck towing about a 20-21ft dual axle travel trailer. The trailer was swaying back and forth quite a bit, especially as he passed us quite rapidly (we were driving 62mph). I also noticed as he passed a MH in front of us that he started swaying again. I thought to myself,"I wouldn't be surprised to see him in the ditch later".

Sure enough, just as we got over the top of Jellico Mountain right at the Kentucky border, there was a strong gust of wind that tried to move us over but our Hensley kept us going straight. The whole truck and trailer rocked quite severly though. Just a few hundred yards past the summit, there he was. His trailer was on its' side and the truck was in a jacknife position and partly on its' side also. I could not see what type of hitch or even if he had sway control but I am sure it was the wind that got him, given what I had seen before the way his trailer was acting at the speed he was going.

After that incident, the wind kept up blowing VERY hard and causing many vehicles to wander back and forth, including many semi trucks. Our rig remained very stable throughout the day and we only experienced some minor buffeting but nothing to be concerned about.
My wife even commented today on how few RV's we saw on the road. Perhaps the wind was the reason or perhaps everybody was just enjoying the weekend in a campground.

As I sit in a campground now just South of Cincinnati for the night, I am thanking Mr. Hensley today for inventing that hitch, and that I had the means and will to purchase it. Our trailer tows very well with a standard type hitch but I would probably have parked it today if it were not for the Hensley!
Barney



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Former tow vehicles were 2016 Ram 2500 CTD, 2002 Ford F250, 7.3 PSD


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