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Old 12-01-2006, 05:14 PM   #57
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I recently replaced my worn-out 1,000 lb rated Eaz Lift with an 800 lb rated Reese Strait-Line (Dual-Cam) hitch.

My trailer has the least hitch weight as a percentage of overall weight of almost any Airstream ever built. With the Eaz Lift it demanded that hitch settup be spot-on and even then didn't track as well as I'd like.

The Reese is a definite improvement. No trailer "wag" what so ever so far. No longer reacts to the bow wave of passing trucks.
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Old 12-06-2006, 09:11 AM   #58
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Equal-i-zer Hitch for my Set-up

My 23' gets delivered to me on Friday. Bates RV recommended the Equal-i-zer hitch for my set-up. I called them this week and asked what size hitch they are installing. They are installing the 1,000# tongue weight, 10,000# trailer weight hitch. The 23' Safari SE has a 600# tongue weight and 6,000# GVW. They said what I expected, that the 600/6,000# hitch was too small for the 23'.

After reading through this thread started by silvergate, and the messages from the manufacturer, the 1,000/10,000# hitch seems to agree with the consensus opinions here--size by expected/estimated tongue weight with some margin of error, not TV suspension considerations.
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Old 12-06-2006, 11:41 AM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rgodfrey
My 23' gets delivered to me on Friday. Bates RV recommended the Equal-i-zer hitch for my set-up. I called them this week and asked what size hitch they are installing. They are installing the 1,000# tongue weight, 10,000# trailer weight hitch. The 23' Safari SE has a 600# tongue weight and 6,000# GVW. They said what I expected, that the 600/6,000# hitch was too small for the 23'.

After reading through this thread started by silvergate, and the messages from the manufacturer, the 1,000/10,000# hitch seems to agree with the consensus opinions here--size by expected/estimated tongue weight with some margin of error, not TV suspension considerations.

Tow vehicles "MUST" always be considered when selecting a hitch rating.

You certainly would not use the same rating hitch on an older car as you would on a Peterbilt truck.

The ratings that were proven many times over some 35 years ago are as follows.

For tongue weights from 500 to 1000 pounds the hitch ratings are as follows.

Standard large sized cars. 1000 pounds.

1/2 ton trucks 750 pounds

3/4 ton trucks 550 pounds.

1 ton and over 550 pounds.

The equalizer hitch , in spite of their advertising, does not have a sway control.

The more rigid the bars, the greater the road shock will be transfered to the front of your Airstream.

The rating that was selected for you. "WILL" in time, damage the front end of your Airstream.

The idea is to have the hitch bars flex when you hit bumps. In your case that is not going to happen. Therefore all the road shock will go to the front of the trailer.

You can ask those that had heavy bars that later on switched to lighter bars.

NOT ONE SINGLE COMPLAINT.

Salesmen are salesmen. Most of them have no real idea how a load equalizing hitch works.

Opinions in this case are just that. They are opimions.

Facts refute those super heavy duty hitch bar ratings.

The ratings of the bars has nothing to do with the maximum load "pulling" capacity.

Andy
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Old 12-06-2006, 12:14 PM   #60
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I guess we are just opening up old wounds here....

Andy,

I appreciate your experience and contributions to this thread, but you're advice seems to fly in the face of what was provided by Josh Jones of Progress Manufacturing, Inc. You can find his complete report attached to post #48 in this thread.

Equal-i-zer only offers 600/6,000#, 1,000/10,000#, and larger hitches that according to Josh are adjustable to get the proper amount of weight transfer with any tow vehicle without being over-hitched. Based on Josh's paper, my dealer correctly selected the proper size of Equal-i-zer hitch for my trailer and tow vehicle.

This was supposed to be an Equal-i-zer thread, but there is some discussion of other brands in here. Is your experience and recommendations based on another brand that does not have the adjustability of the Equal-i-zer? Do you have any specific experience with an Equal-i-zer that caused damage, and what was the cause, improper installation, adjustment, etc.?
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Old 12-06-2006, 12:41 PM   #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
The equalizer hitch , in spite of their advertising, does not have a sway control.


well that's peculiar.

b.
(for no sway control, mine sure does get lucky)
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Old 12-06-2006, 01:06 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rgodfrey
I guess we are just opening up old wounds here....

Andy,

I appreciate your experience and contributions to this thread, but you're advice seems to fly in the face of what was provided by Josh Jones of Progress Manufacturing, Inc. You can find his complete report attached to post #48 in this thread.

Equal-i-zer only offers 600/6,000#, 1,000/10,000#, and larger hitches that according to Josh are adjustable to get the proper amount of weight transfer with any tow vehicle without being over-hitched. Based on Josh's paper, my dealer correctly selected the proper size of Equal-i-zer hitch for my trailer and tow vehicle.

This was supposed to be an Equal-i-zer thread, but there is some discussion of other brands in here. Is your experience and recommendations based on another brand that does not have the adjustability of the Equal-i-zer? Do you have any specific experience with an Equal-i-zer that caused damage, and what was the cause, improper installation, adjustment, etc.?
Each hitch manufacturer will obviously promte their products as being the best etc.

The study that was done in the early 70's was by the insurance company of Airstream.

It had no relationship to any hitch manufacturer. It's only interest was "SAFETY".

Why?

To reduce it's loss ratio, period.

Back then, everyone including Airstream said "we don't know why loss of control accidents happen."

The mission of Caravanner Insurance Company was to find out and report the facts, that were proven over and over again to be correct.

When a loss of control accident was reported, we could predict more the 2/3 of the time "the actual cause."

Amazing, no.

Simple physics.

But, things be as they may, the falsehoods about load equalizing hitches continues in good health.

Each owner can do as they wish. However, opinions are just that.

The key is "the weight and balance" of the entire rig. When rigged, what is the front axle weight, what is the rear axle weight and what is the trailer axle or axles weights?

When and only when that data is in hand, can someone say that they have the facts. Once they have the facts, far more than not, their opinions quickly change.

Laws of Physics are not opinions.

I am well aware that many people disagree with what I have stated. I do have the facts, and most of those that disagree have opinions.

Take the time to get the rig weighed. Your life and your families lives may indeed depend on that.

My interest is simple. SAVE LIVES.

Andy
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Old 12-06-2006, 01:47 PM   #63
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Two trailers with different hitch weights

I just purchased a 1977 22' Argosy. The hitch weight stated in the manual is 560 lbs. Our first trailer is a 2005 28' CCD with a 900 lb. hitch weight. I am using 1000 lb. bars for it. I would like to use the same hitch system (Equal-i-zer) for both trailers. My TV is a 2004 Chevy Avalanche 2500. My question is should I use the same torsion bars for both trailers? According to Andy I should be using 600 lb bars for my CCD and Argosy.
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Old 12-06-2006, 02:09 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jordandvm
I just purchased a 1977 22' Argosy. The hitch weight stated in the manual is 560 lbs. Our first trailer is a 2005 28' CCD with a 900 lb. hitch weight. I am using 1000 lb. bars for it. I would like to use the same hitch system (Equal-i-zer) for both trailers. My TV is a 2004 Chevy Avalanche 2500. My question is should I use the same torsion bars for both trailers? According to Andy I should be using 600 lb bars for my CCD and Argosy.
Try the following test.

With the rig hooked up ready to go, stand on the A-frame at the coupler. Jump up and down. The coupler should move vertically a couple of inches.

If not, then you are over hitched, and/or an excessive amount of rear suspension spring rating.

The ball area must be flexible so that a bump will not cause a loss of control.

With a rigid setup, that softness is just not there.

Secondly, the more rigid the setup, the more road shock that will go directly to the front of the trailer.

Result? Damaged front end. Plus perhaps bending the A-frame.

Airstreams do not need a super heavy duty tow vehicle.

Andy
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Old 12-06-2006, 02:44 PM   #65
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Sure would be interesting to read that insurance study…

If the real answer is a balanced system (I believe this 100%) then how can this be summarily true;
For tongue weights from 500 to 1000 pounds the hitch ratings are as follows.

Standard large sized cars. 1000 pounds.

1/2 ton trucks 750 pounds

3/4 ton trucks 550 pounds.

1 ton and over 550 pounds.


There are too many factors to consider; number of axles, distance between axles, length ratios, spring rates,etc. to make a blanket statement like this.

I also believe that if you give an inexperienced driver a bad tow set up (unstable, porpoising, under powered, etc) and they believe this to be normal because it is the only setup they have ever towed with, then yes, they would have no complaints.
Let that same person gain some experience and then drive a properly hitched, balanced system, with a tow vehicle that is more than just “adequate” and they will kick themselves in the behind for not having got a better set up the first go-round!
I and many others have lived this and preach it anytime anyone comes on this forum and asks: what should I get for a tow vehicle, hitch, etc.
The answer, from those with experience, is a resounding; buy more than you think you will need!
It is far better to have extra capacity than to be on the edge. If someone is asking these question because they are at the purchasing stage (and don’t already own the TT/TV/hitch) then now is the time for them to benefit from our collective experience.

A load distributing hitch should be sized based on the amount of force it needs to evenly transfer to all the axles in the tow vehicle/trailer system to maintain its safe performance. Not sized to result in minimal load transferred to the trailer frame! If the hitch is not rated to distribute sufficient force to all of the axles, you are setting yourself up for catastrophic failure (or at least a very squirrelly towing experience). A 7000# trailer weighs 7000# whether it is hitched to a pinto or the space shuttle; you still need to transfer 10-15% of the tongue weight to all the axles in the towing system to maintain a stable system.

The first priority when setting up a TV, hitch, and trailer, must be to maintain TV integrity. If the TV is not safe, the rest of the system is prone to failure. When placing a load at an extreme point on the TV (hitch ball) the vehicle inherently becomes unstable if that load is excessive; the opposite end –steering axle-will begin to lose friction contact with the road, resulting in a loss of steering. The load should be distributed evenly between TV axles to maintain steering. Steering, braking, and safety are the first priorities. Any load transferred unduly to the frame of the camper is a secondary concern. If I cannot steer my truck because I have not distributed the load on my axles appropriately, and kill myself because of that loss of steering, I really won’t be concerned with the amount of force transferred to the trailer “A” frame.

I can believe that some folks, who have more than enough TV, and have “downsized” their hitch bars, did not experience any loss of performance. I would not recommend this if your TV is not “super sized.” The window of safe operation related to WD hitch setup is larger relative to the difference between TV rating and the size/weight of the trailer. This window (margin of error) becomes much smaller when the TV approaches its maximum capacity. I could drop my camper right on my hitch with no WD and be within the stated ratings for my TV (would this be the extreme example of “pampering” your “A” frame?). I would not experience the same amount of safety and control as I do when properly hitched.

FWIW, AirStream has no record of “A” frame failures due to “overloaded” hitch bar sizing.

It is not typical, nor do I think practical, to advocate that someone purchase equipment rated for less than its intended duty. In the unfortunate event of an accident, I am not sure how the authorities, and insurance investigators, would interpret that either.
I don’t know how many Equalizer hitches Progress Mfg has sold in their 60 years in business, but I am relatively confident that the couple of folks that “switched to lighter bars and did not have ONE SINGLE COMPLAINT.” would represent a statistically insignificant amount of those.

I bow to those of you with many more years of experience and extensive knowledge of things AirStream than I, but I cannot agree on this one.

If anyone is reading his thread as research in to purchasing a hitch, I would follow the recommendations of the Mfr.

And all that, is nothing more/less than my opinion.


Bill
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Old 12-06-2006, 03:18 PM   #66
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Thank you Randy for posting what size Equal-i-zer WD Hitch you and your dealer have chosen.

You join a consensus of 23’ Safari forum members here who have selected the 1000 lb. Equal-i-zer WD Hitch with 4 Point Sway Control. It seems they are easy to install, use and they do an excellent job.

Thank you BillTex for your input… I note in your previous post in this thread you also have the Equal-i-zer WD Hitch.

When setting up this thread, I was particularly interested in what size Equal-i-zer was chosen by those who have the 23’ Safari. I contacted every forum member here who has a 2007 or 2006 23’ Safari. I identified 9 members. Of the nine, 6 have the 1000 llb. Equal-i-zer, 2 others also have the Equal-i-zer Hitch but have not yet gotten back to me on its size. Only one member chose another brand: Eaz-Lift because he had a special situation with his Hummer.

This thread was solely set up for the purpose to assist me and others (who have already decided that their WD Hitch of choice is the Equal-i-zer brand) in choosing the correct size. Discussion of issues beyond this really should take place in the sub-forum under Towing (Hitches, Braking & Vehicles).


In this special season- Peace and Goodwill to all!
Cheers,
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Old 12-06-2006, 08:59 PM   #67
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We are comparing apples and oranges across hitch manufacturers here.

Equal-i-zer's 1000# tongue weight rated hitch provides bars the manufacturer finds appropriate for trailers having 601-1000 lbs of tongue weight on an "average" tow vehicle expected to be used for this load.

I am not aware of an SAE standard for weight distribution bar flex... ie: 1000# bars from multiple manufacturers do not necessarily produce X" of deflection at Y# load. (I don't think SAE J684 defines the WD bars)
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Old 12-07-2006, 12:49 AM   #68
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Well said

Quote:
Originally Posted by BillTex
If anyone is reading his thread as research in to purchasing a hitch, I would follow the recommendations of the Mfr.
Hard to argue with this statement, but I am sure someone will continue to ignore the logical approach to the original questions answer.
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Old 12-07-2006, 05:15 PM   #69
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Andy, I have a 1500 Avalanche TV I ended up with a 77/31 International Sovereign I talked to Reese and gave them weights for a 68/30'. I think the 68 was to be 450. I didn't realize that the 77/31 would be so much heaver. It is listed at 710# and I am guessing a bit more with options. I am still planning to weigh it but I would like to know what size bars do you think would be correct. I have the model 66082 dual cam strait line which comes with 600# bars.
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Old 12-07-2006, 05:37 PM   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Gobie
Andy, I have a 1500 Avalanche TV I ended up with a 77/31 International Sovereign I talked to Reese and gave them weights for a 68/30'. I think the 68 was to be 450. I didn't realize that the 77/31 would be so much heaver. It is listed at 710# and I am guessing a bit more with options. I am still planning to weigh it but I would like to know what size bars do you think would be correct. I have the model 66082 dual cam strait line which comes with 600# bars.
Phil,
I am not Andy but I can tell you with the 1500 Avalanche and a late 70's Sovereign you are definitely going to need more than the 600# bars, I don't recall what Reese has, but the 750-800# are going to be much more appropriate for your application. FWIW my 1975 Sovereign with 2 full LP tanks, full fresh water rruns right around 725# on the tongue with an all up weight of around 7000#.

Aaron
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