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Old 02-24-2006, 10:59 PM   #15
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Hi, congrat's on your new bambi!! How exciting. My wife and I bought our first AS several years back, it is a 22' safari. We purchsed the equalizer hitch with 800 lb. bars and we also purchased the friction sway bar. The combination of the two is remarkable. Our tow vehicle was a Jeep Cherokee 4.0 litter. Don't laugh, that Jeep does great---in the mid west that is. I pulled it down into Arkansas and into the boston "mountains" and while it labored mightily, the 4.0 did its job. I found that it has to work very hard though even on the interstate. We only get 10 mpg when towing, so you can imagine how hard the engine is haveing to work. Not to mention the transmition. I had to put an external cooler on, and even then we can't run the AC in the summer days (mornings and evenings ok). Another problem is that you can be in trouble if you have to get evasive because of your lack of weight. We had a VERY near miss where we crested a hill on a single lane hy. without a shoulder and the traffic was at a stop. I slammed on the breaks, and even though I had my breaks set a little stiff because of the light tow vehicle, we didnt stop in time. At the last minute I swerved left heading for a field and as I went I saw that there was no oncoming traffic . I stayed in the oncoming traffic lane slowing down and went around the problem area with my horn held on and went up about 1/2 mile where the shoulder returned and pulled off to go change my pants . While sitting there thanking God for his protection, my friends who were following us in their van pulled up bringing us the hubcap that flew off as we swerved to miss the back of the car in front of us. They couldnt believe that the AS didnt roll. They said we went onto 1 wheel. The lady we almost hit came up to us and told us that she knew when she went over the hill that there was no way I was going to beable to stop in time. She was waiting for the impact. She happened to hear a song on our radio while talking to us and said she had been listening to the same station. It happened to be on a christian station. We thought that was cool. Someone was definately watching out for us!!! ! The point to me sharing this is to let you be aware of the hazards. You dont outweigh your tow vehicle so when it comes to it you have more potential for problems. Let alone the HARD wear on your vehicle.(suspension, engine, tranni, and breaks.) Also, with that hard of work expect to start to see some fluid leaks after several longer trips. I highly recomend the equalizer and friction sway bar. The lighter vehicle coupled with the smaller wheel base make the sway bar a must! We now pull with a Silverado 1/2 ton and love the upgrade. My wife still drives the jeep, but I have some oil lines to replace . We feel that the only reason the AS didnt roll was because of the equalizer and sway bar combo. It kept the trailor in control and I hardly knew it was there during the evasive driving. These AS trailors are amazing!! Congrats again and happy camping. Chris
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Old 02-25-2006, 08:43 AM   #16
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Hey Brad -- Congratulations! You gotta make the leap and there's nothing but adventure ahead.

The V-6 and rear axle have been discussed. You'll probably find plenty of power for freeway driving. Altitude and normal aspiration (no turbo) will slow you down some but you'll get there.

A downside to the Hensley is about 200# weight all at the front of the trailer. Most of this would add to the tongue weight. You should try to keep tongue weight + passengers/gear in the Pathfinder at or below your 512kg payload. It's best to load the LP tanks (dealer will probably do that anyway) and weigh tongue or hitch weight yourself. The manual will have a diagram how to do this with a board and bathroom scale. Somebody once posted the diagram in the forums but darned if I can find it. Then you can pack accordingly -- probably want to have more payload in the trailer to avoid weight in the Pathfinder.

Best wishes -- and keep us posted on destinations in western Canada!
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Old 02-25-2006, 12:21 PM   #17
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With the two Airstreams we've purchased our agreements with the seller specified, "ready to go down the road". I.E. the the dealer installed a brake controller and an anti-sway hitch, and anything else necessary to drive away fully outfitted. So we've never had to fret over after sale items. The hitches installed both were both Equal-iz-ers. Both trailers have always pulled perfectly. The only problem with Equal-iz-ers is the lock pins will bend out of shape with extremely tight turns or lots of travel over bad roads. However, Equal-iz-er customer service has shipped us replacements twice via overnight mail.
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Old 02-25-2006, 01:36 PM   #18
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I may be one of the few here who have used both products, the Reese dual-cam sway control for over 10 years and the Equal-i-zer for the last two. As I have noted in other threads before, you can't go wrong having either.

From a towing standpoint I have noticed no appreciable difference in handling or the stability of the trailer. I do like the fact that the Equal-i-zer eliminates dealing with the chains and when backing into a tight space, where the tow vehicle ends up at an extreme angle, the Equal-i-zer's bars can be easily removed, while in the same angle, the Reese's bars were near impossible to remove.

Right now if given a choice to do it all over again I would still go with the Equal-i-zer.

Jack
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Old 02-25-2006, 08:11 PM   #19
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Not to worry

I have am pulling an ’06 19ft Bambi with an ’05 Jeep Ltd 4.7L V8 which. My max Gross Trailer Weight (rated) is 6500 which is just a bit more than your Nissan. I may have a bit more power than your Nissan but it should be comparable. I am using a Blue-Ox Sway-Pro hitch which combines friction sway resistance with a self centering spring bar system. The self centering system is in many respects similar to the so called “reese cam” system. It creates a situation in which the components of the system (the “spring bars” that provide weight transfer or leveling) “want” or have a "tendency” to return to a position straight behind the tow vehicle.

http://www.blueox.us/Hitches/swaypro.htm

I have towed trailers since the 60’s (in fact the 50’s if you include high school FFA projects), and the Airstream 19ft Safari is the most stable trailer I have ever towed. Nonetheless I am convinced that the Blue Ox hitch adds that extra measure of security that is necessary.
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Old 02-26-2006, 08:26 PM   #20
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thanks for the input

We are going to go with the Equalizer, now having seen one in person. Seems easier and cleaner that the others and it appears that the towing experience is good for all of the models listed.

I'm still slightly apprehensive about the performance of my Pathfinder as we live at the base of the Rockies, so mountain travel is a must. We'll have to see how it does, 270HP should be enough and I don't need to do 75mph everywhere.

we'll report down the road!
brad.
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Old 02-26-2006, 08:33 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cnssanders
Hi, congrat's on your new bambi!! How exciting. My wife and I bought our first AS several years back, it is a 22' safari. We purchsed the equalizer hitch with 800 lb. bars and we also purchased the friction sway bar. The combination of the two is remarkable. Our tow vehicle was a Jeep Cherokee 4.0 litter. Don't laugh, that Jeep does great---in the mid west that is. I pulled it down into Arkansas and into the boston "mountains" and while it labored mightily, the 4.0 did its job. I found that it has to work very hard though even on the interstate. We only get 10 mpg when towing, so you can imagine how hard the engine is haveing to work. Not to mention the transmition. I had to put an external cooler on, and even then we can't run the AC in the summer days (mornings and evenings ok). Another problem is that you can be in trouble if you have to get evasive because of your lack of weight. We had a VERY near miss where we crested a hill on a single lane hy. without a shoulder and the traffic was at a stop. I slammed on the breaks, and even though I had my breaks set a little stiff because of the light tow vehicle, we didnt stop in time. At the last minute I swerved left heading for a field and as I went I saw that there was no oncoming traffic . I stayed in the oncoming traffic lane slowing down and went around the problem area with my horn held on and went up about 1/2 mile where the shoulder returned and pulled off to go change my pants . While sitting there thanking God for his protection, my friends who were following us in their van pulled up bringing us the hubcap that flew off as we swerved to miss the back of the car in front of us. They couldnt believe that the AS didnt roll. They said we went onto 1 wheel. The lady we almost hit came up to us and told us that she knew when she went over the hill that there was no way I was going to beable to stop in time. She was waiting for the impact. She happened to hear a song on our radio while talking to us and said she had been listening to the same station. It happened to be on a christian station. We thought that was cool. Someone was definately watching out for us!!! ! The point to me sharing this is to let you be aware of the hazards. You dont outweigh your tow vehicle so when it comes to it you have more potential for problems. Let alone the HARD wear on your vehicle.(suspension, engine, tranni, and breaks.) Also, with that hard of work expect to start to see some fluid leaks after several longer trips. I highly recomend the equalizer and friction sway bar. The lighter vehicle coupled with the smaller wheel base make the sway bar a must! We now pull with a Silverado 1/2 ton and love the upgrade. My wife still drives the jeep, but I have some oil lines to replace . We feel that the only reason the AS didnt roll was because of the equalizer and sway bar combo. It kept the trailor in control and I hardly knew it was there during the evasive driving. These AS trailors are amazing!! Congrats again and happy camping. Chris
Can you post a picture of this setup? I would be interested in seeing it.
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Old 02-26-2006, 08:39 PM   #22
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Having towed a Bambi, I can tell you first hand that the dual cam will work great. Though the coach is fairly small for the dual cam, you could use friction sway control and be fine if you didn't want to spend the additional $$ for the dual cam system.

If you go Reese, make sure to get the bars that will accept the dual cam if you decide to either get a larger coach at some point or add the dual cam later if you go with friction sway control.
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Old 02-26-2006, 08:46 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bradk
thanks for the info. Charlie great of you to chime in with experience on all 3 products.

Interesting read here on the differences between the dual cam (Reese) system and the equalizer. Definitely some good reading for the insomniac: http://www.rv.net/forums/index.cfm/f...pging/1/page/1


brad.
I just bought (and am picking up in 4 weeks) a 19' 2004 Bambi Safari LS. I'll be towing it home from Florida to Michigan. I have a Yukon Denali (lots of hp, so no problem there). After reading all of the banter back and forth for weeks now, I've settled on an Equal-I-zer. Yeah, it's alot of dough, but I'm totally convinced it's worth the peace of mind and I've heard enough positive feedback that I'm SURE it's the right one- especially for the Bambi. If you can afford it, I'll bet that coupled with your TV, you'll be in GREAT shape as well.
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Old 02-26-2006, 09:15 PM   #24
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BradK

I tow a 25 ft Safari LS with my 05 Dodge Dakota Quadcab. No problem!
Yea, you can't go 80 mph up the hill but I do go 40 up a 6% grade.
Some times I have to pull back cause im going too fast.

So, with a 19 CCs bambi. No problemo !

Take care and enjoy. Don't overload youself with all these opionions.

Remember.....eveyone has one !

R/
Safari-Rick
05 AS 25 Safari
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Old 02-27-2006, 08:51 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bradk
... 270HP should be enough and I don't need to do 75mph everywhere.
brad.
probably shouldn't do 75mph ANYwhere, with a trailer in tow.
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Old 02-27-2006, 12:16 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuck
probably shouldn't do 75mph ANYwhere, with a trailer in tow.
thanks for the tip.

brad.
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Old 02-27-2006, 02:04 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bradk
thanks for the tip.

brad.
I know, I sound like a little-old-lady, but seriously...you couldn't do much more to put yourself in a more dangerous position than drive at that speed. that speed is like putting a big magnifying glass to all the potential ills that could befall one when trailering. the forces at work against you are magnified exponentially.

Consider that you are talking about towing with a lighter weight tow vehicle, with lighter-weight brakes. yeah, sure, the trailer has brakes. but the brake controller is a very weak link in the chain. in "all my years of trailering"...(all 3 of them ), I've already on my second one. got one season of half-a-dozen short trips out of it, then it just ceased functioning. oh, sure, I got it replaced for free....what good would that have done me @ 75mph in an emergency? bupkiss....But I don't go 75, and I'm not towing with a lighter weight truck, either.

consider that trailer tires are rated for a maximum speed of 65mph. they aren't up to going 75...you're flirting with a blow-out by going that fast. And you have a single axle trailer. you don't want a blowout on any trailer...but even less so on a single axle. when that thing starts rolling over at 75mph, it'll rip your smaller tow vehicle off the road like a toy, regardless of the wd hitch you buy. they aren't designed to counter barrel rolls.

its not easy to controll all the other factors (small truck/single axle, etc), but it is easy to mitigate the risk by slowing down.
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Old 02-27-2006, 02:37 PM   #28
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let me clarify then...

Chuck,

I do appreciate the PSA but let me clarify my previous statement and completely arbitrary number of 75mph, as it appears that you've taken me out of context.

I don't have any plans of going anywhere near that speed (75mph). The fastest you can go (legally) in this Province is 110kph or approx 65 and I doubt I'll even hit that number. The purpose of my post was not to find out the top speed I can travel, I'm only interested in getting to my destination safely and comfortably with my trailer/TV/hitch combination, as I stated in my first post.


thanks,
brad.
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