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Old 10-14-2016, 08:42 PM   #1
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Hitch question for you experienced folks

Using an Equalizer hitch, and measured at the belt line on level ground at the front and rear endcap seam, I'm at 25" by the bow and 21.5" by the stern; 3.5" off level in 30'.

The drop shank measures 8.5" and the hitch head is mounted in the lowest setting. Dealer has offered me a 12.5" drop shank but insists it is too low - I tow with a RAM 3500, I believe the additional 4" would not pose a clearance problem. The service department manager offered a Blue Ox 10" drop receiver, which I find troubling since everything I've read rates that drop receiver at 5,000lbs.

Towing off-level is not an option. I would appreciate any advice anyone may have to help get my Airstream back to level.
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Old 10-14-2016, 08:45 PM   #2
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Are you using a Blue Ox hitch system, or another manufacturer?
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Old 10-14-2016, 08:49 PM   #3
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Equalizer E2.
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Old 10-14-2016, 08:57 PM   #4
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I would take measurements off the frame personally, but if you still require a 3.5" drop definitely get the 12" drop shank.
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Old 10-14-2016, 09:13 PM   #5
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I'm leaning towards the 12" drop shank. On the measurement issue, I did take multiple measurements at various locations, including using a spirit and a laser level, I felt the belt line measurements were the easiest to explain.
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Old 10-14-2016, 09:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Escape_Plan View Post
>>>>snip>>> I would appreciate any advice anyone may have to help get my Airstream back to level.
Get whatever drop shank that is required to get the top of the ball to about 18", or slightly higher, above the ground when the truck is on level ground.

In your owners manual look at the specs for your trailer. I think you will find the coupler where it sits on the ball is 17.5" above ground. The ball should be 1/2" to 3/4" higher when there is no load on the ball. When load is applied to the ball the truck springs will flex downward, close to leveling the trailer.
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Old 10-14-2016, 10:15 PM   #7
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Your 3500 won't drop too much when hitched, but we needed the longer stinger for our Ram 2500 ... not so much with the Silverado ...
Suggest looking at the EQ hitch threads ... some (mine as well) are quite lengthy and detailed.
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Old 10-14-2016, 10:18 PM   #8
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Thanks! That is great advice, first thing in the morning I'm on it.
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Old 10-15-2016, 12:57 AM   #9
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Keep in mind that the difference between front and rear is 3.5 inches, but you only need to drop the front by 1.75", which will bring the rear up 1.75", leveling the trailer.
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Old 10-15-2016, 01:52 AM   #10
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Is the ball tilted as far back as possible.? Might give you some distance,
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Old 10-15-2016, 01:53 AM   #11
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You can trim the bottom of the drop shank, have it cut off.
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Old 10-15-2016, 05:26 AM   #12
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Based on your post I'd go with the 12" drop and you can cut the lower part of the shank you are not using. I did it some time ago on one with no issues.

The 3500 like our F350 should not move much at all, when we hooked up our 2017 Classic at the dealer the mechanics were surprised and both said almost in unison, "the truck did not move at all".

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Old 10-15-2016, 02:10 PM   #13
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When we changed TV to F350 we needed more drop for the BlueOx head. Rather than get the BO for $155 we ordered a CURT 17120 Adj Hitch Bar 12 In X 5 625 In W/8 875 In Rise through Amazon for $58 with free shipping if a Prime member. It is rated at 1,500# tongue weight.
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Old 10-16-2016, 08:06 AM   #14
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Thanks everyone for your advice, we got it figured out. As it turns out I didn't have an 8.5" drop, I only had a 4" drop. How does one mis-measure by 4" you ask? Well, whether this is true or not, but three different folks at the dealership were speaking the same language. I measured the entire length of the shaft like I was asked to do over the phone, when I get to the dealership and they took a look at it they said, "That's a 4" drop." I said how can that be, I used the same tape measure I've been using for 30 years and I'm pretty sure THAT is 8". They told me, not so fast, we don't measure the length of the shaft, we measure the amount of adjustment. So, my 8" drop shaft only had 4" of adjustment (measured from the center of the top and bottom holes). I said well, that explains the confusion, when I was saying I had an 8" drop, they thought I had 16" of total drop . . . that's why they kept asking me if my truck was lifted or stock height and when I told them stock height, they said that's impossible, that drop is too long, you should be cutting a furrow in the pavement.

Long story short, they gladly replaced my 4" (or 8" drop depending on your definition of an inch) with a 6" drop (again, something on the order of 12" of total length, but 6" of adjustment) to bring the Airstream to dead level when towing.

To tie a bow on the story, I asked how I ended up with a drop shaft that obviously was too short from the start. The dealership said that the 4" drop is the standard size that ships with the hitch. I said that's great, but you obviously have various lengths of drop shafts in inventory how is it that the wrong length as installed? They said that's easy, we screwed up.
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