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Old 11-03-2014, 02:45 PM   #1
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Sway Control Hitch on 16ft Trailer needed?

Do I need a Sway Control Hitch pulling a 16ft trailer?
Do I need a Sway Control Hitch and WD pulling a 19ft trailer?
I have a new 4x4 Ram 2500 Diesel truck.
My thinking is that it is easier to travel with a small 16ft trailer, specially if I don't need the WD Sway Control Hitch. I am aware of the obvious space differences between a 16 and 19ft trailer. Being 73, I want it simple. My plan is to travel around the US and having our bed with us instead of going Hotels.
Thank you, Gerhard
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Old 11-03-2014, 02:57 PM   #2
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I'd opt for sway control only if the rear doesn't sag too much on the truck. But WD is always good, too.
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Old 11-04-2014, 06:03 AM   #3
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I used to pull > 1 ton pop ups back in the day and had enormous sway problems frequently. I have NEVER had the problem after getting our 16' Bambi and using a Fastway E2 on either our FJ Cruiser or our 1/2 GMC. Even in high cross winds on mountain passes. Solid as a rock. I would not pull without one. Others here seem to hate them though...

I put on a very good ($110) electric jack. With that it takes about 2 minutes to put it on or take it off on a bad day. The Fastway is so simple it is worth the extra minute or two.
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Old 11-04-2014, 06:31 AM   #4
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Old 11-04-2014, 06:34 AM   #5
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I "upgraded" from an Equalizer to a ProPride on our 16' Bambi. I have never towed without sway control but there is a fairly remarkable difference in the way the trailer behaves when towed between the two hitch technologies.
I have this sneaky feeling that the smaller the trailer the less stable the trailer. My guess is that the smallest trailers probablyly need sway control more than the longer multi axel units.
I have a used Equalizer I would sell you...
Bruce
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Old 11-04-2014, 09:44 AM   #6
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I will get flamed for this but we bought our 22' new 7 years ago and have about 40k miles on it. We do not use a WD or sway control. Have never experienced sway from passing big rigs or heavy winds. Our TV was designed to tow and we make sure the TT is properly weight balanced.
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Old 11-04-2014, 10:40 AM   #7
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GET THE SWAY CONTROL. (I mean, really. It costs less than $100.00) We have a 22' Sport. For one reason and another that I don't want to admit publicly, our last trip, last weekend, was sans sway control. I am very happy to say that it was only about 45 miles, because I am unhappy to say that that trailer felt on the verge of chaos the whole way. We narrowly missed 25+ mph winds, thank Thor, because that would have been ugly. I would not think of towing without one again, unless ... well, I don't want to talk about it.
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Old 11-04-2014, 12:29 PM   #8
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For our setup, we do not use WD or Sway Control either. Tried two different systems....one overgunned, one light duty....and the tail always wagged the dog and felt unsafe. TV has upgraded shocks and we've taken our time testing and dialing in the system. Crosswinds, semi's (both passing us and passing them), debris in the road, even tested on a desolate road with brake controller turned off - all better than with our other setups from before. Talked to CanAm and Andersen (who are both excellent by the way) and they both said "if you have no chief complaint about your current setup after 5000 miles, we think you shouldn't change a thing".
Hope that helps. And if nothing else, enjoy the pic.
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Old 11-04-2014, 12:34 PM   #9
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I mentioned this on another thread, but here goes...
People who own 17' Casita trailers use sway control, but no weight distribution.
Tongue weight is probably realistically 350-450#. A 17' Casita and 16' Airstream are the same approximate size/weight.
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Old 11-04-2014, 02:43 PM   #10
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On my Casita 17' (3500lbs) I used no WD but had a friction bar that connected from the frame of the trailer to the TV hitch. No sway issues.

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Old 11-04-2014, 03:38 PM   #11
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At the risk of getting flamed as well (and as my signature line states, I have a 3/4 ton using a equalizer hitch with 1400# load bars pulling a 2005 28' CCD International) as a scientist and engineer, I feel I should bring up the following discrepancy. Make no doubt, I am part of the herd.

If you have been to Europe, you would find that trailers are not towed using WD gear or sway control, and this goes for Airstreams as well. Check the Airstream Europe link for the brochure:

http://www.airstream-europe.com/Down...AM-2014-en.pdf

Do they know something we don't? Wouldn't we all like to be towing those weights, without regard for the extra complexity of a WD and sway reducing hitch?

There is probably something inherent in the way Airstreams are designed for the US market that drives us to heavier tow weights, tongue weights, WD hitches and sway controls. Maybe it IS possible to set up your small rig to avoid sway, but not until the design differences are highlighted that make this possible.

Until then, since my TT is designed for the US market, I'll continue to use my Equalizer WD and sway reducing hitch (but I envy the Europeans somewhat).
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Old 11-04-2014, 04:13 PM   #12
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Any dealer will tell you yes. I never have and will tell you, based on the heavy tow vehicle that you have, no. If your TV was lightweight, or had a short wheelbase, I might advise differently
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Old 11-04-2014, 06:45 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ahab View Post
I will get flamed for this but we bought our 22' new 7 years ago and have about 40k miles on it. We do not use a WD or sway control. Have never experienced sway from passing big rigs or heavy winds. Our TV was designed to tow and we make sure the TT is properly weight balanced.
I won't flame you, but I bet you drive conservatively. (Which is a good thing)

My opinion is that whether or not one "needs" sway control depends on their driving style.

Ken
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Old 11-04-2014, 06:52 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gerhard View Post
Do I need a Sway Control Hitch pulling a 16ft trailer?
Do I need a Sway Control Hitch and WD pulling a 19ft trailer?
I have a new 4x4 Ram 2500 Diesel truck.
My thinking is that it is easier to travel with a small 16ft trailer, specially if I don't need the WD Sway Control Hitch. I am aware of the obvious space differences between a 16 and 19ft trailer. Being 73, I want it simple. My plan is to travel around the US and having our bed with us instead of going Hotels.
Thank you, Gerhard
Hi. With that truck, you might not need weight distribution. For any setup, even that truck, I would recommend sway control. Very cheap insurance.

If you're concerned about cranking up chains and bars and such - you might want to check out the Andersen for its friction sway control device. Folks who use it seem happy with it and there aren't heavy bars to crank up. You can leave it engaged while backing up and in the rain. It might be a good option for you.

Good luck!
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