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Old 06-21-2012, 04:29 AM   #1
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Blue Ox Sway Pro W/D System

Iíve been thinking about replacing our weight distribution system. Itís the old style Reese cam and itís probably original to the trailer. No problems Ė itís done fine for the limited amount of towing weíve done but itís just time to modernize things a bit. We also bought a Quickbite Coupler Ė but thatís another post.


So I start looking around and find this store on Ebay that sells, among other things, damaged box items Ė mostly from Amazon. Apparently Amazon gets a replacement and any damaged box items get sold off in bulk.


They have a Blue OX Sway Pro with 750 lb. bars listed. Did some research on the thing and I canít find anything really negative about it. Four point sway control Ė no greasy parts Ė no snapping bars into place - no towing noise and no unhooking it to back up.


His listing says itís missing some bolts from the parts bag and the powder coat has some scuffs on a couple of the parts. Email to Blue Ox with whatís missing and they reply right away Ė no problem just let us know what parts you need. Bid on it and, other than one sniper bidder at the last second, there were no other players. I got it really cheap. Arrived in one day - free shipping.


Looked through the parts and called Blue Ox to confirm. Turns out there are no parts missing. The parts listed as missing were just preinstalled bolts and adjusters. Couple scuffs that will wax out and the Blue Ox logos were scratched. The mfg. agreed to send replacements for the logos. So thatís my ďsometimes you get lucky storyĒ. How lucky of course depends on how well it works.


Is anyone using this system and if so do you have any tips or comments you can share.
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Old 06-21-2012, 05:54 AM   #2
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I picked one up here locally off CL for $175. If you don't already have the instruction manual, it's readily available online, just google it. I don't have any real world experience with it yet, as I've only used it to trailer back and forth to the storage lot, but I'm glad to hear that their customer service has been top notch as I'm missing one integral little piece of metal that holds the bar into the hitch assembly. I have the drop pin, I'm missing the tiny sliver of metal that holds the drop pin securely in place.

Interesting you said you don't have to take it off to back up. I assume that's in their sales literature? I tried backing up ONCE without taking them off and it rotated the receiving tube on one of the bars on the hitch about 3".

Congrats on getting what seems to be a great WDH! I read a lot about it before making my purchase and everything I saw was positive also. Looking forward to reading what others have experienced with it.
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Old 06-21-2012, 07:54 AM   #3
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I've also been thinking about the sway pro. I'll be following the conversation!
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Old 06-21-2012, 05:51 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taylormade View Post
I picked one up here locally off CL for $175. If you don't already have the instruction manual, it's readily available online, just google it. I don't have any real world experience with it yet, as I've only used it to trailer back and forth to the storage lot, but I'm glad to hear that their customer service has been top notch as I'm missing one integral little piece of metal that holds the bar into the hitch assembly. I have the drop pin, I'm missing the tiny sliver of metal that holds the drop pin securely in place.

Interesting you said you don't have to take it off to back up. I assume that's in their sales literature? I tried backing up ONCE without taking them off and it rotated the receiving tube on one of the bars on the hitch about 3".

Congrats on getting what seems to be a great WDH! I read a lot about it before making my purchase and everything I saw was positive also. Looking forward to reading what others have experienced with it.
Whatever the part is you need I don't think you'll have a problem getting it from them. They were very helpful the two times we touched base with them. Apparently have someone in customer service 24/7.

So did you have a problem when you tried backing up? My comment came from all the listing for the product and comments on RV.net and the Forest River site. Here's one product listing....

Topline RV Demo Parts Store. Sway Pro 1500 Lb
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Old 06-21-2012, 05:58 PM   #5
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We just got our 25' 2008 Safari and picked it up in Tuscon last weekend with old Reese style cam hitch...it creaked, and moaned, and twisted when we pulled it away...since I was driving to Montana, I did not trust this one...sure enough, it was worn the Lazyday dealer told us. They only had Blue-Ox in stock, so I bought it to get on my way...what a nice set up...no issues after 2300 miles this past week. Looks nice also matching the frame of the AS...easy to load using the power lift in front to bring a little over center to lock in the chanes, vs using the wrench..really nice set up and easier to work with than the older Reese I used to own. It also was a 750 lb load rating..
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Old 06-22-2012, 08:13 AM   #6
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By the way Taylormade: is there an issue with backing up with Blue Ox connected? I have been backing up without any issues while parking the trailer....I did not see any refrence warning about backing up...let me know if I am missing something. Again, I have the 750 model. Thanks
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Old 06-22-2012, 10:13 AM   #7
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So did you have a problem when you tried backing up?
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Originally Posted by gypsydad View Post
By the way Taylormade: is there an issue with backing up with Blue Ox connected? I have been backing up without any issues while parking the trailer....I did not see any refrence warning about backing up...let me know if I am missing something. Again, I have the 750 model. Thanks
I'm not 100% sure, all I know is that I didn't disconnect it and backed up into my driveway at a pretty sharp radius to park it. I disconnected everything and didn't notice that the cam had swiveled back towards the hitch ball, but the next morning when I went to remove the hitch assembly, it was noticeable. About 2" noticeable. Perhaps someone came by in the night and hit it or something but I know when I left the storage lot they were both pointing out diagonally and when I removed it, the right one was significantly less diagonal. The nuts that hold it in place were still very tight and I wasn't able to straighten it back out without first backing them off. I'll experiment some more in the coming weeks.

Cheers!
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Old 06-22-2012, 10:52 AM   #8
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The nuts that hold it in place were still very tight and I wasn't able to straighten it back out without first backing them off. I'll experiment some more in the coming weeks.

Cheers!
How many pounds torque are you using on the antisway nuts that you had to loosen? Maybe over tightened or not equally torqued.... just a thought.
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Old 08-07-2012, 04:48 PM   #9
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Just wanted to chime back in here. I can definitely concur with the customer support of Blue Ox. They're top notch, can't say enough about them.

As for the system itslef, I used it for the first time on a 40 mile trip. Worked great but to be fair, it's a short trip.

Lastly I don't see how anyone can back up the trailer without first removing the support arms. I didn't do it this last time, and they both were offset when I went to unhitch.
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Old 03-28-2013, 02:50 PM   #10
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Lastly I don't see how anyone can back up the trailer without first removing the support arms. I didn't do it this last time, and they both were offset when I went to unhitch.
Sorry to revive another Blue Ox thread, but the other one got me researching this a little bit.

Can you elaborate on your concern about backing up while hitched? By "offset" are you saying that after backing up and turning that the chains are no longer vertical? If so, wouldn't this occur while turning while either moving forward or backward, and would eventually correct itself after a few more turns and/or straight running? Sorry for the silly question as I have a "brand E" hitch, no chains.
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Old 03-28-2013, 04:54 PM   #11
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Sorry to revive another Blue Ox thread, but the other one got me researching this a little bit.

Can you elaborate on your concern about backing up while hitched? By "offset" are you saying that after backing up and turning that the chains are no longer vertical? If so, wouldn't this occur while turning while either moving forward or backward, and would eventually correct itself after a few more turns and/or straight running? Sorry for the silly question as I have a "brand E" hitch, no chains.
According to BlueOx, you do not need to disconnect anything prior to backing up. I never disconnect mine before backing up, even into my parking spot at home, which is a tight turn. I just hook it up and use it, never have had an issue.
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Old 04-07-2013, 11:16 PM   #12
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Weight rating of Blue Ox bars

Let me ask for some words of wisdom/experience. I'm considering a Blue Ox Sway Pro to go with a 25FB Flying Cloud we have on order. The trailer is listed at 837 pounds (no options, empty, dry). Our trailer will have no options. Do you think we should go with 1000 pound bars or 1500 pound bars? Do you have any idea whether the Blue Ox ratings tend to run low or high?

Those of you with the Sway Pro, what bars do you use and have you measured your tongue weight?

The AS dealer I'm getting the trailer from is not a dealer for Blue Ox hitches, so they won't have the different bars for us to try on the spot, and they don't have experience setting up Airstreams with Blue Ox.
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:14 PM   #13
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Sway Pro with Suburban/Tahoe/Yukon?

Anybody using the Sway Pro with a recent GM full-size SUV? The ones with the receiver in the middle of the bumper?

I have a 2010 Yukon Denali and have a 25FB Flying Clound on order. The Denali has auto-leveling rear suspension, which I think means I won't get any significant sag when the trailer is hooked up. On my Yukon, the top of the receiver hole is 24 inches off the ground. The AS manual says the coupler height on the trailer I am getting is 17.75 inches.

I found the current Sway Pro owner's manual on their website. It has a page that shows the top-of-ball height for each of the shank sizes they offer, at the max and min drop. Their greatest drop is with the 11 hole receiver. This puts the top of the ball 3.28 inches below the centerline of the receiver. So that would be (24 - 1 - 3.28) = 19.72 inches above the ground--two inches above the AS hitch height. Does that mean I can't use the Sway Pro, or that I need a custom shank? How hard is it to get a custom shank built?
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Old 04-10-2013, 12:29 AM   #14
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Sorry to revive another Blue Ox thread, but the other one got me researching this a little bit.

Can you elaborate on your concern about backing up while hitched? By "offset" are you saying that after backing up and turning that the chains are no longer vertical? If so, wouldn't this occur while turning while either moving forward or backward, and would eventually correct itself after a few more turns and/or straight running? Sorry for the silly question as I have a "brand E" hitch, no chains.
Yeah, at the time of that post I was a super noob on WDH set ups. By offset, I simply meant that the bars were turned one way or another. At the time, I thought it wasn't supposed to happen.

Over the last year, I've enjoyed the Blue Ox very much, although I've never used another brand, so I have nothing to compare it against.
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Old 04-10-2013, 08:35 AM   #15
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Bue Ox

My Blue ox WDH was drop shipped to me Monday. This will be the last step before I head to the California Coast and pick up my 1990 25 foot Excella. I will be pulling with an 08 Tundra and slightly nervous about my first towing experience. Slow and go before getting home and really see what I bought.
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Old 04-10-2013, 06:24 PM   #16
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I have had 2 25' Airstreams, and 2 different hitches...never had a problem backing up...kind of defeats the purpose if you have to take it off...using Blueox and love it, now over 5,000 miles and more to come! Also had Reese on earlier model, and had no issues either. Reese was a nice hitch, but with the bars on, a bit awkward to move around; I find the BlueOx easier all the way around for one guy to manuver.
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Old 05-22-2013, 09:39 PM   #17
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Blue Ox SwayPro initial impressions

I got a new AS last month, and a SwayPro to go with it. Here are my thoughts so far.

My tow vehicle is a 2010 GMC Yukon Denali (short wheelbase, rear autoleveling air shocks). The trailer is a 2013 Flying Cloud 25FB.

I talked with the Blue Ox factory about which bars to order (my AS dealer had no knowledge of the SwayPro), and got the answer to use the 1000 pound bars. I had my AS dealer order and install the hitch for me. They had to obtain a longer drop shank--they Blue Ox standard 6-hole shank did not come close to dropping far enough. The dealer's installer got the ball height right, and set the chains on the fifth link from the end (six and a half links showing below the bracket). It seemed easy to tighten the chains.

Our first drive was four miles of city streets to a CAT scale. The scale showed the tow vehicle front axle was quite a bit lighter than the unhitched weight, so I went two links tighter and re-weighed. This got the front axle to the exact unhitched weight, so we went with that. It tracked well on the way home. We did have some bothersome porpoising on a stretch of concrete highway.

The next day, my wife noticed the paperwork listed the hitch as the 1500 pound model. So I had the dealer obtain the 1000 pound bars and swapped them. Then we went to the CAT scales again (different location), with the trailer still empty. Once again, putting the seventh link in the slot (four and a half links showing below the bracket) seemed good on the scale--within 20 pounds of the unhitched front axle weight. It seems odd to not need another chain link with the lighter bar, but who am I to argue with the scales?

We went on our trial overnight run with the 1000 pound bars. It was only 15 miles each way. Again, it tracked fine. There were still places where we got some porpoising. But overall it was OK.

One problem I noticed was that the right side bracket was hard to turn, even without tension on it. When tightening the chain, I can rotate the bracket within an inch of the locked position, and release, and it will just sit there. I have to push it to get it to unwind. I also spoke to the factory on this. They said to try it for a couple more trips to see if it loosens up, and call back if I still have a problem.

One minor complaint I have is the plastic covering on the wrench handle. It's grippy to the hand, and provides some padding, but it easily slips on the wrench. This can be an annoyance. I'm planning to buy a one inch socket and use my breaker bar instead.

Second impressions and scale tickets to follow....

P.S.: The SwayPro bars do not have the weight numbers written on them, so it is not obvious how to know which bars you really have. The trick is to look for a row of indentations on the trunion end of the bar. Four indentations means 1500 pound bars, three indentations means 1000 pound bars.
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Old 05-22-2013, 11:08 PM   #18
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Part two

My initial impressions were based on towing the trailer empty and lightly loaded. Last weekend we took a three-night trip to a place about 50 miles away. Most of the distance was on a busy Interstate. This time the trailer was fitted out for camping and had a full water heater, and partially full fresh water tank.

When we got on the freeway, a storm was approaching, with very strong crosswinds--whole trees were in motion (Beaufort scale 7, 31-38 mph winds). The rig was significantly less stable. Being passed by vehicles like Suburbans required extra attention and corrections. As we got away from the storm, the wind died down and it worked better, but still felt a bit twitchy.

When we got home from this trip, we went to the scales again. The extra weight was making the front axle lighter.

We plan on going out again in a week. We'll weigh again as we leave town, and may go another link tighter.

For reference, here are my scale numbers:

1) As we picked it up from the dealer, nothing put in the trailer, not much in the tow vehicle, nearly-full gas tank, 1500 pound bars:

............TV Solo....TV+TT, 5th link....TV+TT, 7th link
TV Front....3060.......2780...............3060
TV Rear.....3000.......4100...............3720
TT Axles...............4800...............4920

2) With the 1000 pound bars, trailer still empty, TV about the same except less gas:
............TV Solo....TV+TT, 6th link....TV+TT, 7th link
TV Front....3060.......2940...............3080
TV Rear.....2920.......3760...............3580
TT Axles...............4880...............4920


3) With both vehicles packed for camping, some water in trailer, 1000 pound bars. After seeing the numbers, we did an extra weighing, with about 60 pounds of gear moved from the front of the trailer to the rear.

............TV Solo....No link............TV+TT, 7th link....Gear moved, 7th link
TV Front....3080.......2600...............3000....... .......3060
TV Rear.....3040.......4420...............3880....... .......3760
TT Axles...............5160...............5300....... .......5340




Some other data on the SwayPro:

The hitch head with the shank attached weighs 55 pounds. I was pleased it was not heavier. I can get it on and off the tow vehicle pretty easily.

The 1000 pound bars weigh ten pounds each (including chains).

When hooked up, sometimes the Yukon tailgate clears the trailer jack, and sometimes it does not.
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Old 05-23-2013, 08:59 AM   #19
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Blue Ox Sway Pro System

I got the Blue Ox System installed 4 years ago. Been on approximately 12 trips, from 200-800 miles each way. I have a 22 ft Airstream Argosy being pulled by a Ford 150 5.4 liter long bed.I have towed the trailer empty and fully packed.No problems found. Had a blowout on the Airstream while being passed by a semi tractor trailer, the trailer stayed straight on. No porpoising or swaying noted. I was very happy with the Blue Ox. By the way, I use 5 loops on the chain to attach the sway bars. The only negative I can say is that it rusts quickly.
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Old 06-07-2013, 05:43 PM   #20
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still not dialed in

I mentioned above that one of my rotating brackets was hard to rotate. It did not improve since the time the Blue Ox support person asked me to try it a while longer. I called back, and they said to put on some Dawn dishwashing liquid, and flush it with hot water. That improved it a bit, but it was still not good, so they are sending me a replacement.

We have since taken a 500 mile round trip, mostly on an Interstate, at 60 mph. The rig does not feel as stable as I would like. It seems twitchy when making small steering adjustments (I have not tried any "large" steering adjustments), and does react to side winds and passing vehicles.

I am unable to go to the next link on the chain. Even with the jack raised to the max, and sitting on a small block, I can't get close to being able to latch the bracket one link tighter. And that is using a longer wrench than the provided one.

For reference, my new scale numbers show the front axle of my TV at 3080 pounds without the trailer, and 3040 pounds with the trailer, and 4 1/2 links showing below the bracket. Tongue weight (with bars disconnected) is 900 pounds.

I sent photos of my rig to Blue Ox. They said I did not have enough flex on my 1000 pound bars. so they suggested raising the hitch head on the drop shank by one hole. This will put my trailer nose-up (it is within 1/4 inch of level now) but they think it will allow me to get more deflection on the bars and better stability. I'm skeptical but I guess I'll have to give that a try.

The Blue Ox support person specifically said to stick with my same bars and same model of head.

I'm also thinking of seeing what happens with more air pressure in the TV: The tires state 44 psi max, while I'm running them at the recommended 32 psi.

Other suggestions welcome.
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