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Old 10-15-2010, 10:48 AM   #29
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If it were mine, the first thing I'd do is weigh the trailer and tongue of the trailer. To me if its fishtailing unprovoked at 65 MPH, there is something very fundamentally wrong here.

The hitch should received proper attention too, and good suggestions here.
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Old 10-15-2010, 11:43 AM   #30
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For alligator defense I always carry an alligator clip.

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Old 10-15-2010, 03:03 PM   #31
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Old 10-15-2010, 04:02 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by tpi View Post
If it were mine, the first thing I'd do is weigh the trailer and tongue of the trailer. To me if its fishtailing unprovoked at 65 MPH, there is something very fundamentally wrong here.

The hitch should received proper attention too, and good suggestions here.
Indeed. Spontaneous fishtailing at 65 mph means something is badly wrong, and using a sway control hitch to reduce it is just a bandaid.

Properly hitched w/o sway control devices engaged, no trailer should display any steady state oscillations. They may sway back and forth a bit in response to transient inputs (gusts of wind, sudden steering inputs, etc), but those oscillations should always damp out if the driver does not react to them. One common cause of trailer sway is driver-induced oscillation, where the driver reacts to trailer behavior in such a way as to exacerbate the sway rather than reduce it.

- Bart
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Old 10-15-2010, 07:17 PM   #33
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Indeed. Spontaneous fishtailing at 65 mph means something is badly wrong, and using a sway control hitch to reduce it is just a bandaid.

Properly hitched w/o sway control devices engaged, no trailer should display any steady state oscillations. They may sway back and forth a bit in response to transient inputs (gusts of wind, sudden steering inputs, etc), but those oscillations should always damp out if the driver does not react to them. One common cause of trailer sway is driver-induced oscillation, where the driver reacts to trailer behavior in such a way as to exacerbate the sway rather than reduce it.

- Bart
Never seen one that didn't "oscillate", following from the rear. Never. It's always there. Move from one side of the lane to the other, change lanes, catch a wind gust . . it's always observable.

"Should always damp out" is relying on luck. The trailer load may change; a slow tire leak may be present, or, worst of all (and I doubt we've discussed it around here) is a tripping hazard where the TV and/or TT get airborne on one side or, God forbid, both.

When the trailer comes back down all sorts of havoc can play: blown tires, broken suspension, serious hitch damage, and so forth. She may get airborne a second time as well if suspension bottoms badly.

A sway-eliminating hitch is worth every penny at that point. As are attending to all other hitch rigging details.

.
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Old 10-16-2010, 12:12 AM   #34
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"Should always damp out" is relying on luck.
.
I may not have been clear: if you have a trailer that sways back and forth noticeably (from the tow vehicle, not the trailer's rear bumper) under normal towing conditions w/o a sway reducing hitch - something is wrong, and you should address the cause of the problem rather than slapping damping (friction) on it and hoping it goes away under all conditions.

-= Bart
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Old 10-16-2010, 04:51 AM   #35
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Any trailer that has a "sway" under normal conditions is a sick puppy. It needs fixing before any superhitch is employed.

After all, aren't these the best towing trailers on the planet?

Incidently, I've been using the classic brainless friction anti-sway bars for decades from coast-to-coast with no sway problems whatsoever. This includes using them not only on the best towing trailer on the planet, but on the underlings as well.
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Old 10-16-2010, 07:00 AM   #36
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Old 10-16-2010, 07:30 AM   #37
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I'll second Paula's suggestion.....take a trip over to see the good folks at
Out Of Doors Mart especially if you can't fix it with suggestions from the good folks on our Forum here.
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Old 10-16-2010, 10:06 PM   #38
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I mean, using a "friction anti-sway" bar to tow a 30' trailer is like taunting an alligator.

Just like towing around town, you can poke that alligator with a stick- thinking you’re pretty clever cause nothings ever happened, and he’s not going to make much of a move to get you, cause you’re out of reach, with your long branch… but at some point, you’re gonna get lazy, or cocky, and step in just a wee-bit too close, and before you know it, that ‘gator is gonna leap and catch your fleshy calf between his razor sharp teeth, and he’ s not going to let go. He’ll slowly drag you down into his swamp, with you thrashing about, all the while inching your nostrils closer to the surface of the water; whilst you scream and claw at the slippery, muddy goo at the waters edge. Until, exhausted from your futile efforts to free your leg, and weary from blood loss, he’ll pull you beneath the water, and wedge you under his favorite tenderizing rock- where you’ll stay while he, at his leisure, feasts on your bloated corpse…
And THAT, my friend, is why you DON’T USE a friction anti-sway bar.
Hi, Joe. I personally think this is a pretty harsh analogy coming from someone who can't stop their own trailer from swaying even with the $3,000.00 magic hitch. Many people, like me, use what you call a friction type hitch and are very happy with it's performance. And for the other guy, torsion means a twisting type spring and Reese Dual Cam springs bend just like all of the others, not twist like car trunk springs or torsion bar springs used on several cars for front suspensions. I use an Equal-i-zer brand hitch and in over six years, and many thousands of miles, my trailer only swayed once; It was sitting in my driveway swaying during a 5.0 earthquake.
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Old 10-16-2010, 10:13 PM   #39
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Having a memory doesn't require a brain.

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Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In View Post
Torsion type sway control, has a brain.

Friction type sway controls, are brainless.

Andy
Hi, springs and many other materials [plastics and metals] have a memory, meaning that they can be bent and will return to there original shape, but that dosen't mean they have a brain. So as far as I'm concerned, all hitches are brainless.
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Old 10-16-2010, 10:29 PM   #40
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Hi, springs and many other materials [plastics and metals] have a memory, meaning that they can be bent and will return to there original shape, but that dosen't mean they have a brain. So as far as I'm concerned, all hitches are brainless.
Hear, Hear!!
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Old 10-17-2010, 01:43 AM   #41
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hypocrite?

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Whether it’s a ‘half’ or ‘three-quarter-ton’ isn’t the real issue.
You should not be using a ‘friction sway-bar’ with a 30’ trailer.
You need a ‘dual-cam’, at the very least. Preferably, a 3P or Hensley.

Hi, Joe wrote this: "( I've never experienced that before - even when I towed a 2005 31' Classic with a seriously under-rated RAM 1500 AND friction sway-bar )"

My Mom used to say that some people need to look in a mirror!
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Old 10-17-2010, 11:47 AM   #42
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Hi, Joe. I personally think this is a pretty harsh analogy coming from someone who can't stop their own trailer from swaying even with the $3,000.00 magic hitch.
You are right. I am experiencing problems with my rig. Whether it's my Hensley "magic hitch" Arrow, Suburban, Airstream, or a combination of them all is yet to be determined. But the fact that my rig performed flawlessly with the Arrow for nearly 2 years, strongly indicates there is obviously a problem somewhere, I'm overlooking. BTW, thanks for all your helpful comments on that thread.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERTSUNRUS View Post
Hi, Joe wrote this: "( I've never experienced that before - even when I towed a 2005 31' Classic with a seriously under-rated RAM 1500 AND friction sway-bar )"

My Mom used to say that some people need to look in a mirror!
RS,
I wouldn't be so quick to apply the label "hypocrite".
Rather, take my opinions for what they are worth; that is: someone who has real world towing experience using a REESE WD with friction-bar, an Equal-I-zer setup, and a Hensley Arrow- on vehicles including: 1500 RAM, Excursion, Expedition, 3500 RAM CTD, and 2500 Suburban...

I'm certain, if you actually had any time on an Arrow vs. friction-sway, you would undoubtedly conclude that 'pivot-point-projection' is a superior hitching system.
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