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Old 06-22-2007, 01:58 PM   #1
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New Member - need help with towing

Hello, I have just found this site and am looking forward to gaining information from other users. I have recently bought a 2005 30' S/O Airstream that came with a Hensly hitch. The only problem I am having is sometimes the trailer bounces to much and shakes cabinet drawers open. I am not sure of the cause, maybe the road, maybe the hitch to tight. Anyone else had this problem? I also think I need a straight hitch bar, I am looking to buy a used one or trade a 2". Forgot to mention the TV, it is a 2007 Toyota Tundra.
Thanks, 52vicky
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Old 06-22-2007, 03:58 PM   #2
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hi vicki and welcome to the forums...

i agree you need help with towing.

normally this is the place to go for all things hensley...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...ide-26279.html

but your needs are so essential and fundimental that detailed online advice isn't gonna cut it.

take your gear over to weatherford texas to the a/s dealership.

david tidmore there CAN and will help you sort out the rigging and set you up safely.

bouncing occurs for many reasons and almost none are related to the hitch....

w/d bars sometimes, but again speculating on the causes without LOTS of basic info isn't much help.

for example the truck and trailer should be weighed to help with the setup and to assure you've NOT exceeded truck axle ratings...

tire pressures, truck spring rates, w/d bars, shank drop, tongue mass, payload, shocks, road conditions...
are just a few of the issues

now for the other big point (some will disagree) and you won't like this...

the 05 classic slide model is perhaps the heaviest a/s on 4 wheels and has a very heavy tongue too...

over 10k loaded and 1200lbs+ on the tongue/ball.

your fine new tundra is really AT if not OVER it's towing limits with this trailer.

yes the haha can help with many towing issues,
but it doesn't change the limits posed by your tundra/30 slide combo.

yes the new tundra has the power/torque and brakes to pull this much.

but the total weight and tongue weight are taking the toyota past the payload, gcwr and other phyical parameters...

once people and dogs and fuel and gear are loaded into the truck.

IF it can be set up to tow safely d.t. can get'r done for ya!

don't rely on forum advice to get the setup dialed in. go get help from a towing and haha expert.

cheers
2air'
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Old 06-22-2007, 04:44 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman

your fine new tundra is really AT if not OVER it's towing limits with this trailer.

Agreed. That is an awful lot of trailer for that Tundra.
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Old 06-22-2007, 04:56 PM   #4
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Thanks for the information. I don't think the truck is overloaded, the UVW on the a/s is 7700 and the tow rating for the truck is 10,800, but I will have the trailer weighed and may take it to Weatherford. Thats a far piece from Winnsboro. Do you know if anyone at the Lewisville dealership might have this same information?
52vicky
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Old 06-22-2007, 07:13 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 52vicky
the UVW on the a/s is 7700 and the tow rating for the truck is 10,800, but I will have the trailer weighed and may take it to Weatherford.
please understand i'm not bashing your truck. i like 'em!

the 30 slide model really needs a full 3/4 ton truck/van/suv.

airstream ubw (uvw) are very tricky.

NO options (like tv, audio, solar, upsized fridge and so on)
NO spare tire or wheel
NO hitch
NO lpgas
NO water
and so on....

jack canavera here has an 05 30/slide but i don't know if he's weighed it.

wild guess would be 8500 empty and 9500 with water, gear, food and basic rv supplies.

the siide really adds to the tongue weight.

and because it's behind the rear truck axle that gets magnified at the axle...

so another bit of info needed is the rear axle/tire capacity on the truck

you will likely need 1400lb spring bars on the haha...

and a class 4+/5 receiver.

what did the previous owner tow with?
IF they had a 3/4 ton anything the spring bars might just be 1000lb rated.

back on the truck side,
10800 is for the smallest body model right?
what happens with a crew cab or long bed or other goodies?
also that is without options, or cargo and with only one person inside.

it is unlikely the lewisville dealer has anyone with REAL experience setting up a haha.

more likely they know equal-i-zer or reese or the other common hitches.

shouldn't hurt to call'em and ask IF they know how to set up a hensley and will do it for ya.

dt in weatherford keeps all the stingers in stock,
so IF you need a different drop he can put it on and try it for ya right there.
he really understands your hitch.

happy camping and keep us posted on the outcome...

cheers
2air'
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Old 06-22-2007, 08:11 PM   #6
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First of all, welcome to these Forums. We're glad to have you with us.

2air is absolutely correct. A 30'SO Airstream really needs more than any half ton truck (Tundra included) to safely handle this heavy tow. The SO adds to the drama with a really heavy tongue weight. The Tundra's 10,000+ pound tow rating refers to downhill, not to exceed 100 yards. I'd want a one ton to comfortably pull a 30'SO. You are courting disaster pulling a really heavy trailer with a light duty truck.

The Hensley Arrow is a great towing system. I have one. It works as advertised. It does, however, have a somewhat significant learning curve. It has to be set up properly, and you have to know how to adjust it. Go see David Tidmore in Weatherford. I drove from Florida to get him to set mine up. If you take it to anyone else, you might as well have it set up at the drive-through window at your nearest Taco Bell. In other words, most RV and tow gear technicians know nothing about the Hensley.

Your trailer "bounce" could be caused by improperly adjusted weight distribution bars.

Remember that an insufficient tow vehcle is the main cause of perfectly good Airstream trailers becoming very expensive pieces of yard art.
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Old 06-22-2007, 11:19 PM   #7
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Your truck is too small. Gas engine? Lots of load for the for poor thing. The hensley hitch ssystem is not the problem unless it is broken. The WD bars may be to small.

Cabinets shaking open can be tires as well. Out of balance or over inflated.
Professional help is warrented.
Oh and welcome to the forums....
I towed towed my classic 31 with a Gas F-250. Under powered. I now have a Diesel F-250. 8000 lb truck with a 15,000 lb towing capacity and a 8000 lb trailer.
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Old 06-22-2007, 11:25 PM   #8
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Ah. the tow rating. lies damn lies, statistics, and tow ratings. 10,800 rating and a 10,300 lb trailer. too close. The largest trailer you should tow is 8600 lbs (80%).
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Old 06-23-2007, 12:01 AM   #9
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Hi 52Vicky and welcome to the forums.

It may seem as if you are getting lots of negative comments. You really are not. What all these folks are talking about is safty. Now that you are here we want you to stay around.

Besides the safty factor an undersized truck causes white knuckles and anxiety to such levels that often people stop taking the trailer out. You have a fantastic trailer there and you ought to be out in it as often as possible enjoying it.

Rule of thumb is that you tow %80 of capacity. My personal rule of thumb is that money is cheaper than the damage and loss to family and property when you go cheap on safty.
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Old 06-23-2007, 12:19 AM   #10
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52VICKEY,

I'm a 1956 manufactured kinda guy, I fly prop planes, I fly turbo prop planes, I fly jet planes, but your asking to much. 80% of all my girlfriends weight would equeal 1200 lbs.
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Old 06-23-2007, 09:29 AM   #11
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52Vicky,
I recently was bringing my new 30' Classic home, towed by a new model Ford F-150 with all the tow gear, etc. Before I got home, I'd cell phoned my buddy (Ford Salesman) and bought a new F-350 , diesel, 4x4. It make a BIG difference. You cannot put a price on safety!
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Old 06-23-2007, 09:34 AM   #12
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Welcome.

Now, first things first, you need another tow vehicle first and foremost. I agree with everything that has been said here. IMHO, you might be an accident waiting to happen.

JCanavera also had drawers opening in transit too and he has a proper tow vehicle. I don't know what his final solution was, but you might PM him.

You've got a great Airstream, now, go out and get a proper tow vehicle.
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Old 06-23-2007, 09:45 AM   #13
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Take it straight from the person who posted about their experience with a half/ton pickup and a 30 foot late model wide body Airstream. You would be so much safer (happier) with a 3/4 ton TV.
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Old 06-23-2007, 10:42 AM   #14
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Thanks to all for your information. The Tundra may be overloaded, but it doesn't feel like it, no strain pulling and no problem stopping. I don't know how Toyota rates the truck 1/2t or 3/4t, but the title says 3/4t. As far as the problem with the bouncing, when I bought the trailer I towed it from Florida with an F350 dually and had the same problem. I made one trip with that same truck and again the same problem. For towing power I don't think I could tell the difference between the two trucks, the 350 had the 6 liter diesel. I think the trip to Weatherford is sounding like a good thing to do, and I am going to check with Toyota engineering. Thanks again for all of your help.
52vicky
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