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Old 08-05-2014, 02:01 PM   #1
Rivet Master
1999 30' Excella 1000
small town , Maryland
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 729
Backing with weight distribution hitch

I visited a airstream dealer last week to buy a reese weight distribution hitch. They told me, '' Its only a forward motion hitch and not to back up with it''. Is this true ? Does everyone disengage the trunnion bars before backing up? I don't remember reading this on the forum, but I also can't remember what I had for breakfast. Who can back up with their hitch without breaking something? This website is the reason I own a airstream. Thank you Gregg

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Old 08-05-2014, 02:06 PM   #2
Rivet Master
1974 Argosy 20
2014 20' Flying Cloud
Kooskia , Idaho
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 4,591
I towed with a Reese square bar trunnion stile hitch for many many years and never had any problems backing up. It was not one which the straight line sway control system built in, but even then I never heard of issues with backing with them either.

I currently tow with an Andersen WD hitch, agin, no issues backing.

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Old 08-05-2014, 02:17 PM   #3
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1997 30' Excella
1961 26' Overlander
1954 22' Flying Cloud
1981 28' Airstream 280
San Antonio , Texas
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I currently have a 1997 31' Excella 1000 and use a Reese WD hitch. Mine is the one with the separate sway control bar. Backs up just fine.
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Old 08-05-2014, 02:22 PM   #4
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2008 20' Safari
Tunnel Hill , Georgia
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I have a reese wd hitch with a seperate sway control bar. I always take off the sway bar but not the wd trunnion bars before backing...never had a problem

Remember its not the destination, but rather the journey.... its what's in the middle that matters the most!
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Old 08-05-2014, 02:24 PM   #5
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2008 25' Safari FB SE
Frederick , Maryland
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I also have the Resse WD hitch and have no problem backing in.
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Old 08-05-2014, 02:51 PM   #6
Rivet Master
1999 30' Excella 1000
small town , Maryland
Join Date: Sep 2010
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Thankyou for the quick responces. Now I know why backing up was never mentioned. Gregg
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Old 08-05-2014, 03:00 PM   #7
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2000 25' Safari
1999 34' Excella
Davidson County, NC , Highlands County, FL
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Posts: 2,782
I have backed up using Reese with snap up trunnion bars and Reese with dual cam trunnion bars. I had no problems with either. But, when turning and backing at the same time it really puts a lot of extra stress on the spring arms. I can understand how one could break when really stressed.

It's important to read and follow the instructions for whatever type of hitch you decide to buy. I read the install instructions for a Reece WD hitch, and backing up is not mentioned there.
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Old 08-05-2014, 03:04 PM   #8
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2007 28' International CCD
Springfield , Missouri
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I have a Equalizer 4 point WD and back up without any problems.
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Old 08-05-2014, 03:07 PM   #9
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2012 25' FB Eddie Bauer
Vintage Kin Owner
Virginia Beach , Virginia
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I used to have a Reese with the separate friction sway bar and forgot to loosen/remove it ONE time... bent the trunnion. The ball and this massively thick piece of cast iron just bent about 30 degrees. I now have the Hensley and don't loosen up the bars until I'm backed in. (I am very careful backing and avoid anything sharp turns while doing it.)

Carry ON.

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Old 08-05-2014, 03:31 PM   #10
Rivet Master
1999 30' Excella 1000
small town , Maryland
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I'm glad that I asked this forum before buying. This dealer will match amazons hitch price, for streamers that need to know.
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:55 PM   #11
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2016 30' Classic
Erie , Colorado
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ProPride I have I back just like a normal trailer. Only thing I do as a last step is to make sure the hitch head is re-centered. I have pieces of illuminescent tape that help with alignment as I back into the hitch. I can see them in the backup camera on the truck. After backing into a space I look at the camera, pull a little bit forward and then back up cranking the wheel to swing the back end to move the head back into alignment.

Reason for doing this is that if the head is shifted far left or right the power jack won't clear the spring bars. I don't loosen them until the jack has a load. Maybe wouldn't be a problem if I unloaded them first and then they would swing freely. Centering it takes just a moment.
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Old 08-07-2014, 02:27 PM   #12
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Rockville , Maryland
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Backed up with the ProPride all the time for many, many, many years - no issues at all!!!
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Old 08-07-2014, 04:54 PM   #13
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1988 25' Excella
1987 32' Excella
Knoxville , Tennessee
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No problem with backing with our Reese dual cam hitch. I can jackknife it at almost a right angle with no problems. I do not use an additional sway bar.
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Old 08-07-2014, 05:00 PM   #14
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2014 23' FB Flying Cloud
Spokane , Washington
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 6
Had the same conversation at the dealer about our new-to-us 23FB. We went with the Blue Ox when they assured us that system backs with no problems. We still intend to be cautious... hate to bend or stress anything.

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