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Old 06-11-2012, 06:56 PM   #1
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1963 22' Safari
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Equalizer Hitch rough ride


Just returned from an awesome trip from Denver to the Black Hills. Betty is a 63' Safari. Approx 3300 lbs loaded up. Pulling her with a 2010 Suburban 1500. Question is, why the rough ride with the EQ hitch on? Much more bounce and jerk than without? Installed with the bars parallel to the ground so don't think it's bound too tight.

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Old 06-11-2012, 07:11 PM   #2
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I guess the first question I'd ask is what bars are you using with your Equalizer. We tow a 2012 16' Airstream with the Equalizer and we are using the 600 lb. bars. Tongue weight with the trailer fully loaded (including water and propane) is about 550 lbs. If you had say 1000 lb. bars you would really beat up the trailer (at least this is my understanding).

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Old 06-11-2012, 07:14 PM   #3
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I agree with Bruce. Get bars that are rated in line with your hitch weight. More flexibility equals a better ride and less damage.
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:21 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Atomic Betty View Post

Installed with the bars parallel to the ground so don't think it's bound too tight.

Atomic Betty
Just because the bars are parallel, does not mean the hitch is setup correctly. The hitch head also needs to be adjusted with the bars so the front axle of the tow vehicle is at or very near to the same height as before the trailer was attached.

Was this done in the set up and adjustment of the hitch?
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:25 PM   #5
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I run an Equalizer and have never noticed a rough ride.

Which weight hitch do you have? FWIW I run a lighter hitch than Equalizer recommends for my set up.

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Old 06-11-2012, 08:14 PM   #6
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It's a fact of life with any weight distribution bars on old concrete roadways. You can adjust to you're blue in the face but it won't go away.

Use the hitch adjustment procedure from the manufacture, parallel bars have nothing to do with adjustment. The idea is to take some of the weight off the back of the tow vehicle and redistribute it to the trailer and front of axle of the tow vehicle. Ideally the weight on the front axle will be restored to it's weight without the trailer.

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Old 06-11-2012, 08:32 PM   #7
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The net effect of any WD system is the transfer of weight to the tow vehicle is balanced by the same weight transfer to the trailer. In a trailer with a softer suspension, or already loaded up, this could take away what little travel there is left, giving you a harsh ride and beating the crap out of your trailer. Likewise, if you managed to really crank them up, you could put too much weight on the front axle of your 'Burban (that would be hard to do).

You need to start out with the hitch weight of your trailer and see if WD is even needed. With 3300lbs, you'll want somewhere between 330~500lbs on the hitch. Transferring weight might not be needed... especially when you factor in adding 150lbs of hitch to the equation. But, you are getting some sway control if you are using an actual e-quilzer brand rig.

I tow ~4500lbs tandem axle, ~500lbs on the tongue and found I was basically adding enough WD to offset the weight of the hitch. By using a short hitch, I have my ball as close to the axle as possible, which further reduces the need for WD. A lot of the more complicated WD setups introduce a lot of bad to counter... long draw bar lengths, heavy weights...

Anyway, just took off the remainder of my EQ hardware and am sticking to just my Airsafe after experimenting in some very high cross-wind with lots of big rig traffic. Us small-fries could do with just some good sway control... check out the new Andersen hitch which might be a simpler setup.

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