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Old 09-24-2019, 05:29 PM   #1
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Demco Hitch Jammed

I just brought home my 2020 Flying Cloud and found that I cannot uncouple the hitch. It's a Demco. There is no information on the Forum about these hitches--I guess that Airstream has just started using them.

One problem is that the latching/unlatching mechanism on top of the cup is plastic, so you can't hit it with a hammer or put a pry bar under it without breaking it.

My driveway does slope down, so the trailer is at an angle to the truck, putting the weight of the trailer back on that sliding lock mechanism inside the hitch. Here's a cut away picture from the Demco site.

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The black plastic thingie I've called "Plastic Release" flips up from left to right--no sliding involved. The "EZ Latch Mechanism" is apparently just a slug, not a collar like on a "regular" hitch. But because of the angle, I suspect that if the trailer's at an angle, it's not going to unhitch.

Seems like if I could figure out a way to lower the truck's ball while the weight is off the hitch, it might come undone. But how to do that ...

Any ideas?
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Old 09-24-2019, 05:34 PM   #2
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Possibly some info in these threads/posts?

https://www.google.com/search?q=Demc...com&gws_rd=ssl
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f238...er-197125.html

Any of these manuals help?

https://www.demco-products.com/resources/manuals

Is there a Demco manual in your Airstream owners manual briefcase?

Try chocking the trailer carefully on a fairly level surface, lower the trailer fully, put the tow vehicle in neutral, release that top lever on the hitch, and slowly raise the trailer. If the driveway is sloped, you might need someone in the TV to keep it from rolling, until the trailer is free IMO.

Good luck,

Peter


FYI/FWIW
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Old 09-24-2019, 05:36 PM   #3
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Lower the trailer completely. Then slowly lift it until you can kinda see the hitch move. It has to be totally level for it to release. I had the same issue in my driveway.
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Old 09-24-2019, 05:45 PM   #4
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Or with the trailer in the lowest position slowly extend the jack and keep up would pressure on the black handle until it releases.
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Old 09-24-2019, 06:05 PM   #5
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On a related topic - why did AS move to Demco for the coupler?
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Old 09-24-2019, 06:05 PM   #6
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Get the trailer solidly chocked with all pressure off the ball. Unlock the hitch stinger from the truck receiver, and gently pull away. Now you are unhitched and can fiddle further...
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Old 09-24-2019, 06:33 PM   #7
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Um... have you seen this thread?

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...es-201032.html
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Old 09-24-2019, 06:54 PM   #8
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Lord what a contraption......what ever happened to a regular trailer hitch? Its so simple and safe ! (unless you are trying to tow with a tiny wimpy vehicle)
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Old 09-25-2019, 06:44 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belbein View Post
My driveway does slope down, so the trailer is at an angle to the truck, putting the weight of the trailer back on that sliding lock mechanism inside the hitch.

But because of the angle, I suspect that if the trailer's at an angle, it's not going to unhitch.
I think you stated and found the problem. Now it's a matter of learning what works for you in this situation. Getting the ball in the sweet spot where it will disconnect.
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Old 09-25-2019, 08:01 AM   #10
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This is America, place of the American dream and the Race to the Bottom Line. I'm morally certain it was money.

There's one other mention of a Demco hitch that I could find on the Forums: Some poor soul whose Demco disintegrated. I'm hoping that that's a one-off, one-in-a-million occurrence. But looking at the Demco site, I don't see any indication that they have experience with travel trailers. Hope I'm wrong. I also hope that those of us who bought the recent Airstreams aren't guinea pigs.
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Old 09-25-2019, 08:10 AM   #11
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Saw it. After I found my hitch was jammed. But even if I'd seen it before, it's not like you can tell the dealer to switch out the coupler. I'm feeling kind of stuck.

Though in all honesty, I've had hitches get stuck before. The judicious use of a rubber mallet disciplined them into line. The stressor here (for me) is that I can't use any kind of percussive maintenance because that lovely release is plastic.
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Old 09-25-2019, 12:59 PM   #12
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I posted the resolution over under "Hitches" in a string called "About That New Demco Hitch," or something.

The Cliff's Notes:
  • I did manage to get unhitched, thanks to Demco's tech folks
  • If you buy a 2020 Airstream you are likely/certain to have a Demco hitch, so pay attention!!!
  • Demco's customer service is excellent
  • Airstream's dealer's technical support is ignorant about this hitch according to my admittedly limited sample
  • I got my rig unhitched because Demco's tech folks walked me through it, so mega-kudos to them
  • The procedure for unhitching is not the same as for the old style hitches ... pay attention to what Demco says in the other posts
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Old 09-25-2019, 01:01 PM   #13
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Here FYI:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...ch-201251.html
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