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Old 07-05-2014, 06:19 PM   #57
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I am with you on the what does it matter
There could be a reason and I am open to listening and learning.
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Old 07-05-2014, 06:21 PM   #58
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In the Airstream owner's manual, where it demonstrates how to measure tongue weight, it shows a scale under the jack pad. No hitch is included. Though, there would be a miniscule difference when tongue weight is measured at the hitch ball, due to leverage change of the scale moving forward away from the axles.

Tongue weight is dead weight on the ball, which does not include forces of torque or tension created buy the weight distribution system or weight of the hitch. Tongue weight is a measure of the trailer only. Again, look how Airstream tells you to measure tongue weight.

Why would Airstream quote a tongue weight that would include a hitch or payload, when they have no idea what the weight of your hitch will be or how much payload you will carry. That is why the tongue weight quoted by Airstream seems light to most people. It does not include the hitch, added options, water, or propane in the tanks.

add edit:
I agree that it does not matter except one person is speaking oranges and another hears apples. The important issue is how much load is applied to the tow vehicle in the form of payload upon the tow vehicle at the hitch receiver.
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Old 07-05-2014, 06:43 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by ghaynes755 View Post
Alan paraphrasing what you wrote. If I were to put the PP stinger in the truck receiver, attach the ProPride head to it (not attached to the trailer) so that I have the stinger, head and bars all attached to the truck the only change to the trailer tongue weight is the additional weight of the jacks which might be 30-40 lbs?

Then I back the truck up to the trailer and let the trailer connect to the PP ball. Has the tongue weight changed? No.

Hook up the PP in it's normal condition. Unhitch from the truck. Weight on the tongue (or under the power jack stand) will be increased by the weight of the PP head. But as soon as it is hooked back up to the stinger the trailer tongue is sitting on the a hitch ball just like it started when there was no PP included.

?
I see the logic, but do not agree with the terminology used by some people, that the hitch becomes tongue weight when fixed to the trailer. My opinion still is that PP and HaHa are still removable hitches. If someone changes to another type of hitch, did the tongue weight of the trailer change? I think not!

I'm done commenting on this subject for now. (I do not want to seem argumentative)
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Old 07-05-2014, 06:47 PM   #60
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Why would Airstream quote a tongue weight that would include a hitch or payload, when they have no idea what the weight of your hitch will be or how much payload you will carry. That is why the tongue weight quoted by Airstream seems light to most people. It does not include the hitch, added options, water, or propane in the tanks.
Sounds reasonable. With the propride though, since all that "hitch" is added to the frame of the trailer it is just as easy to weigh that on such a "modified" trailer and call it tongue weight for calculations of trailer to payload capacity. Like I already posted, the alternative is to weigh the entire hitch assembly in the bed of the truck and count it as payload. To be fair, you would really have to count it as load. The load is still there- hitch and trailer tongue weight it is just moved to a different position but still on the TV.

Just read your post #59. I agree with you and disagree too. The trailer tongue weight is whatever it is once loaded. My AS published as 860 lbs. but with LP and whatever else it has gained when I weighed it 980lbs. My trailer tongue weight was 980 loaded. Later I installed to the frame of the trailer a ProPride hitch with weight. It is now a functional part of the frame. It could be said that I added the weight to the trailer but it will impact the tongue weight more just like LP. If I want to speak only of the tongue weight I say AS 960# but actual weight on my truck is higher. So I agree with your more specific term hitch weight. My other hitch was a separate affair- stick the ball/bar in the receiver and attach the ball joint to the trailer frame- no installed parts but by the RV book I was to add the 39 lb weight to the hitch weight. Never got into the bar weight!
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Old 07-05-2014, 08:08 PM   #61
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The problem here is there are two "tongue weights" in the industry. From the truck/receiver side of the industry TW is ALL the weight placed on the back of the receiver. Stinger, hitch, trailer et. al. That number is used as a safe maximum for the receiver. When AS produces a tongue weight spec, it is only in consideration of the A-frame and coupler. They don't care about ANYTHING forward of the ball coupler.

If you measure true TW, at the coupler, with only the components "rearward" of the ball coupler, you assure you are complying with AS spec. If your total weight of all the hitch components, including stinger falls below the "tongue Weight" spec of the receiver mfr, you are good to go with that component. Anything that is left over from the truck mfr relative to GAWR, GVWR, etc. can now be used for additional payload, beyond actual receiver weight.

This is not a one spec exercise. The A-frame has it's load limits, and once again, that is tongue weight...without much of the hitch components included.

Relative to one of the above posts, unless you are one who believes specs are marketing department driven and have no capability or durability meaning, it is important.

When I added a bike rack, 3 bikes and my scooter ramps to the a-frame, my measured TW, with HAHA installed went up to 1175#. Spec is 1000# max. After accounting for the hitch components and rearranging some load inside, I am back down to 950#.

1175# + stinger still puts me well below the 1500# max required by the receiver spec.
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Old 07-05-2014, 09:49 PM   #62
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BTW, the difference in measuring at the coupler vs. the jack is not all that minuscule when added to all the other minuscule bits and pieces. In my example in last post it is 46 pounds lighter when weighed at the coupler than the jack. (by mathematical calculation)
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Old 07-05-2014, 09:52 PM   #63
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We just had our 1960 33 foot Sovereign Custom towed to our home and I scaled her at 308 lbs tongue weight, and 4563 lbs on the axles for a total of 4871 lbs. That's dry with no propane tanks. Pretty light though!
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Old 07-05-2014, 09:57 PM   #64
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We just had our 1960 33 foot Sovereign Custom towed to our home and I scaled her at 308 lbs tongue weight, and 4563 lbs on the axles for a total of 4871 lbs. That's dry with no propane tanks. Pretty light though!
Wow, that's just a hair more than half of my 30' Classic....but that's loaded with groceries, clothes and all gear. Empty mine was 7140# out the door.
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Old 07-05-2014, 10:03 PM   #65
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I did not expect my thread to blow up in that direction. Just wanted to share figures.
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Old 07-05-2014, 10:08 PM   #66
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I did not expect my thread to blow up in that direction. Just wanted to share figures.
I know, and I'm sorry, but without a clear definition of the very basis of your question, the answers are meaningless. We have actually been down this road before, and I'm not sure we've made any progress.

I think, if we use Alan's definition and EVERYONE would weigh and answer according to his convention, we would have a meaningful database. And it would be accurate to about ...50lbs to true weight splits.

I'm sorry, but I think anything less is just a bunch of meaningless numbers.
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Old 07-06-2014, 12:02 AM   #67
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Yes we have been down this road before and never had any standard by which to measure. Some weigh with hitch installed, some don't. At different points on the tongue. I don't see where these numbers obtained in different ways have any meaning.

As for those who weigh with the ProPride/Hensley attached, and the scale placed under the tongue jack, realize that if the scale was moved to the point on the ProPride/Hensley stinger where it rests on the truck receiver (18 inches farther from the trailer axles) the tongue will weigh about 200 pounds less. But I don't see how these numbers are accurate or useful either.

We need to know which tongue weight we are looking for, how it may help us, and the standard to obtain it. Unfortunately there seems to be no standard.
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Old 07-06-2014, 01:59 AM   #68
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The Hensley stinger was modified at CanAm for our Mercedes in that they cut about 4" off and drilled a new hole for the locking pin. They also put a slight bend in it to preload the spring arms. Thus changing the dynamic of the shear point on the stinger where the stress is theoretically at the edge of the tow vehicle receiver. That then brought the trailer 4" closer to the car.

When something like a Hensley or ProPride is bolted to the trailer after careful measurements and placement, as far as I am concerned, it becomes part of the trailer as I do not remove the hitch head components unless the trailer is sold. Thus that hitch head weight reduces the payload of the trailer and since it is at the very front of the trailer, it adds mass to the tongue weight as used.

When the Hensley or ProPride hitch is connected to the stinger on the tow vehicle, that mass or load did not suddenly become weightless. Part of the this exercise is attempting to determine that we do not overload the tow vehicle receiver nor rear axle of the tow vehicle.

As I mentioned earlier, the Dodge factory receiver was rated 1,200 pounds. The Dodge forums had reports of weld failures at the round ends of the receiver support member. Our 25FB was at 1,175 pounds camping ready. I did not want to tow at or exceed the receiver rating. Thus I cut off the factory receiver and installed one with twice the capacity.

That is what part of this exercise is all about.

It has been too many years for me to remember all the tidbits about force vectors associated with mass, but what the weight distribution hitch is actually doing is modifying the downward force vectors and taking some from the front of the trailer and projecting it hopefully to the front axle of the tow vehicle by the use of leverage.

The term weight is perhaps incorrect and we should be discussing force vectors?
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Old 07-06-2014, 06:08 AM   #69
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Originally Posted by dkottum View Post
...snip...

We need to know which tongue weight we are looking for, how it may help us, and the standard to obtain it. Unfortunately there seems to be no standard.
Agreed - and for that reason, perhaps this hasn't been hijacking after all...

No doubt - I'm confused - but it seems to me Airstream has a max limit on their tongue (the amount of weight they allow to converge at the ball/coupler) and the tow vehicle manufacturer has a max limit on the amount of weight that is allowed to be seen at the hitch receiver.

Let's start there.

1) is that statement accurate?
2) if yes to 1, are these two weights the same?
a) why?
b) how is that weight measured?
3) if yes to 1, are these two weights different?
a) why?
b) how are these weights measured?
4) if no to 1, what is an accurate (and accessible) definition that could end the confusion between tongue, hitch, and receiver weight definitions?
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Old 07-06-2014, 06:49 AM   #70
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Agreed - and for that reason, perhaps this hasn't been hijacking after all...

No doubt - I'm confused - but it seems to me Airstream has a max limit on their tongue (the amount of weight they allow to converge at the ball/coupler) and the tow vehicle manufacturer has a max limit on the amount of weight that is allowed to be seen at the hitch receiver.

Let's start there.

1) is that statement accurate?
2) if yes to 1, are these two weights the same?
a) why?
b) how is that weight measured?
3) if yes to 1, are these two weights different?
a) why?
b) how are these weights measured?
4) if no to 1, what is an accurate (and accessible) definition that could end the confusion between tongue, hitch, and receiver weight definitions?
1) Yes
2)No, each manufacturer (Vehicle, receiver, and AS)has a design limit to the componentry which make up their product. Can be driven by a number of factors in the design and build process. Bottom line is, each has determined a spec which they believe will deliver durability, reliability and safety.
b) IMO, trailer tongue weighed at coupler with only the permanently mounted hitch components AFT of the ball coupler attached and with all camping gear and supplies on board. (That's close enough...spring bars, struts are shared...heck if we want to be picky enough, even chains and umbilical and breakaway cable shift ounces and grams...but won't go there)
Receiver weight should be additive of b) above and all the hitch components and anything else attached to them...like Rock Tamers. And then, of course we weigh the vehicle/trailer combo as discussed ad nausium in other threads to determine vehicle capacity/WD adjustment.

3) isn't this the same as #2 in reverse, or do I not understand you question.

4) question one is accurate.
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