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Old 05-14-2018, 01:45 PM   #1
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Smile Sway Control for an Airstream 22FB

Hi All,

I am new to this site and Airstreaming as well. I have just purchased a 22FB Airstream and will be towing it with a 2018 Toyota Tundra 1794 Edition 4 wheel drive.

My question is do I need sway control and if so I would appreciate any reccomendations.

I towed the trailer from the dealership home which was about a 2 1/2 drive at 60 to 65 mph without issue.

Your feedback is very welcome and much appreciated.

Cheers,

Greg
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Old 05-14-2018, 03:44 PM   #2
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Consider a weight distributing hitch with built-in sway control.
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Old 05-14-2018, 04:04 PM   #3
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The answer depends on whether the Tundra has the built-in sway control system as a part of the towing package or not, how much you trust it, your reflexes, and what you want to spend...

I tow a 22 footer with a Tacoma Crew Cab 4x4, and I absolutely need sway control, since it's not built in.

I tend to travel in very hilly terrain and in high winds, so I went with a Hensley-designed hitch system (ProPride with 1000 pound WD bars) that uses mechanical sway prevention as an integral part of the design. That makes it possible to tow with my relatively light vehicle with safety and stability when the setup is PROPERLY adjusted....

There are a lot of hitch systems that provide some level of sway control and weight distribution, and the choice depends on what you want to do. Its a political/religious discussion, so be prepared for lots of conflicting opinions...

As always, my thoughts are what works for me, and are, as usual, just my opinion...
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Old 05-15-2018, 06:00 AM   #4
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Itís engineering design, and nothing to do with politics or religion.

WD hitches come with or without integrated sway control.

Two levels of sophistication:

1) The obsolete types require spring bar tension and have limited effectiveness. A few hundred pounds of force. Design varies, but the original REESE Dual Cam still outclasses the rest.

2) The second is the Jim Hensley patent. Sold by licensee Hensley Arrow. The revised patent is sold by Pro Pride. These two arenít comparable to the old type. They eliminate trailer sway. And are not dependent on bar tension.

An Airstream tows very well. In fact, itís more stable than your pickup. Which needs all the help it can get from being upset. Itís the more likely cause of a loss of control accident than the trailer. Trailering just makes pickups worse. The best design WD hitch is cheap at twice the price. (And it needs to be set up on a certified scale).

I used the Dual Cam more than thirty years. Have used the Hensley eleven. I can do maneuvers ó all day long ó in my far larger combined rig at speeds higher than where yours will roll over.

A Hensley patent hitch and the trailer-mounted TUSON electronic anti-sway is the belt & suspenders approach.

Hitch-rigging is fully one-third the equation of a stable rig. Tow vehicle, and travel trailer DO NOT outweigh it. The design quality of the components of the rigging is central (and given that set up is proper).

.
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Old 05-15-2018, 06:21 AM   #5
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Sway Control for an Airstream 22FB

Yes, you are absolutely correct that this should be simply an engineering discussion. I am one. But you will see opinions that verge on hysteria and other irrelevancies when it comes to hitch systems. I know what works best for eliminating sway, but there are those who dismiss Hensley designs as ďunnecessaryĒ or ďoverkillĒ or ďfalse securityĒ. Iíve grown real tired of the silliness. Itís a darn fine design, my rig tows like itís on rails, but there are still deniers. Like I said, it departs engineering, and heads straight to an advocacy and hostility that, to me, stinks of political or religious fervor. Individuals are entitled to have opinions, but this subject gets ridiculous real fast, it seems. Misinformation abounds, and positions get defended with silliness. Itís sad and frustrating.

In any case, Iíll tow with a Hensley design, namely ProPride, and the naysayers can do what they want....and donít get me started on the folks that seem to be unable to understand how it works, how to use it, or how to work with it. It runs the gamut, and gives me deep concern about the ability of some to deal with properly towing anything...
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Old 05-15-2018, 07:02 AM   #6
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Ha! I knew you were shooting for politeness, but that post above is one Iíll print and frame!!

Folks will buy what theyíll buy. But not understanding ďwhyĒ an Airstream is better by design is sad. Itís easily within high school level understanding.

Same for hitch design. Same for tow vehicle design.

Donít believe best hitch is better? Return for money-back guarantee.

OP, the best day towing is just another one you forgot. Un- eventful, as to what happened on the road.

Itís the scenery, not the road, load, traffic or weather that we want to stay with us.

The final piece of the towing equation is anti-lock trailer disc brakes. Will stop the rig faster than the truck by itself.

.
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Old 05-15-2018, 10:39 AM   #7
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I have a 22fb towing with a 2010 Tundra. I added a weight distribution hitch with sway control and it made a big difference. My hitch is an equal-i-zer 10,000 lbs. We have pulled it over 10,000 miles across many different types of surfaces both on and off road and it tows perfectly.
I am very happy with this setup.
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Old 05-15-2018, 10:57 AM   #8
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Hi

The "built in" sway control on various new trucks can be a pretty nasty thing. It cuts in once things get a bit crazy as opposed to preventing it from happening in the first place. I have anti-sway built into my truck. I have forced it to engage. I do have data on this ....

How badly you need this or that depends a bit on how many 100's of thousands of miles you have pulled a travel trailer. For most of us the answer is < 1 If you watch the delivery guys hauling these things down the road ... not much anit-sway in evidence ....

Bob
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Old 05-15-2018, 12:13 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by uncle_bob View Post
Hi

The "built in" sway control on various new trucks can be a pretty nasty thing. It cuts in once things get a bit crazy as opposed to preventing it from happening in the first place. I have anti-sway built into my truck. I have forced it to engage. I do have data on this ....
Interesting. I wonder how much the vehicle stability systems (the ones which have a trailer stability mode) vary? The one on my BMWs is likely made by Continental for BMW. I know Bosch also makes one for other manufacturers.

Towing a large box trailer over the Rockies in winter, on snow covered roads, I tried to get it to engage (in a large empty truck brake stop, not on the highway or in traffic). It didn't come on. I have been able to engage the vehicle stability control when pushing the vehicle, especially on icy or snowy roads, but not when towing. Maybe I wasn't fast or aggressive enough in trying to get the trailer to start swaying. My conclusion was that by the time it engages, one would already be deep into a hole that was avoidable in the first place.

All of those systems are, IMO, best thought of as disaster avoidance systems. They in no way replace an appropriate hitch, and proper setup.

Jeff
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Old 05-15-2018, 12:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gruhl View Post
Hi All,

I am new to this site and Airstreaming as well. I have just purchased a 22FB Airstream and will be towing it with a 2018 Toyota Tundra 1794 Edition 4 wheel drive.

My question is do I need sway control and if so I would appreciate any reccomendations.

I towed the trailer from the dealership home which was about a 2 1/2 drive at 60 to 65 mph without issue.

Your feedback is very welcome and much appreciated.

Cheers,

Greg
Greg:

You didn't say if you have a weight distributing hitch. You only ask about sway control. The sway control is sometimes limited by the hitch design. If you already have a WD hitch, it may dictate what sway control you can add. Please advise if you already have hitch and what brand/type you have.

As you can see, there are many opinions out here. Some valid, some less so.

Welcome to the discussion.
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Old 05-15-2018, 02:35 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by jcl View Post
Interesting. I wonder how much the vehicle stability systems (the ones which have a trailer stability mode) vary? The one on my BMWs is likely made by Continental for BMW. I know Bosch also makes one for other manufacturers.

Towing a large box trailer over the Rockies in winter, on snow covered roads, I tried to get it to engage (in a large empty truck brake stop, not on the highway or in traffic). It didn't come on. I have been able to engage the vehicle stability control when pushing the vehicle, especially on icy or snowy roads, but not when towing. Maybe I wasn't fast or aggressive enough in trying to get the trailer to start swaying. My conclusion was that by the time it engages, one would already be deep into a hole that was avoidable in the first place.

All of those systems are, IMO, best thought of as disaster avoidance systems. They in no way replace an appropriate hitch, and proper setup.

Jeff
Hi

Once you figure out what it's looking for, you can get it to engage. Doing so may not be a smart thing to do, but it can be done. You are getting some fairly major sway at the point it engages. I have no idea how similar the systems are between manufacturers. I'd bet they all do similar things. Major motion drives differential braking and deceleration. Keep in mind that deceleration may *not* be the ideal solution to the problem ....

Why do crazy people dig into this kind of stuff? I like to know what the various systems do and what they "look like" when they engage. Yes, locking up the brakes in a big snowy / empty parking lot is also one of my occasional pastimes ....

Bob
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Old 05-15-2018, 04:03 PM   #12
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Best one was when I arrived at work to a pristine snow covered parking lot driving my wife's car, and just had to cut a donut in the snow.

As I threw the car into the skid, imagine my surprise as my boss, driving HIS wife's car. entered from the other side of the lot, tossed it into a skid, and we neatly spun into the SAME donut like synchronized swimmers in the same lane....

As we rocked to a hasty stop (clean miss), we both leaped out of our cars, screaming, "What the heck are you doing, I saw it first!!!!"

Then we realized just how close we came, and SWORE to say nothing...to anyone lest our wives found out....
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Old 05-15-2018, 04:11 PM   #13
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Silence is the better part of valor.......
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Old 05-15-2018, 04:17 PM   #14
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Silence is the better part of valor.......
Yeah, especially when you are doing something stupid with your wife's precious, shiny new Volvo station wagon...that SHE insisted you drive because there was snow on the ground...in the high desert of California!
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2012 shortbed CrewMax 4x4 Toyota Tacoma TV with more antennae on it.
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