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Old 05-30-2012, 01:35 AM   #29
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If you live in Phoenix, Arizona and hookup in summer 115+ degree weather, the cons are obvious: You have to stand in the heat and hand-crank the tongue up and down. With an electric tongue jack, you push one button (or you can let the wife do it). For us, hookups go much faster and with a lot less effort with our electric tongue jack, which was well worth the money spent.
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Old 05-30-2012, 05:54 AM   #30
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From my perspective

My God, a little cranking is a chore? Seriously? I have heard as American we shy away from any physical effort, but cranking the jack is hard?
I ALWAYS try EVERYTHING I can to talk my clients into removing the electric jack and replacing it with a manual one. I have had to take apart more heads to lift the tube up so I can even move the trailers more times than I care to admit. They are battery drains and when they do not work, you are often screwed. The new ones might come with a manual crank, but the old ones do not. My advice personally and professionally; REMOVE THE POWER JACK and replace it with one you are the power for.
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Old 05-30-2012, 06:11 AM   #31
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I agree one hundred percent. Jim
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Old 05-30-2012, 06:40 AM   #32
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Thumbs up A little planning folks.....

A bottle jack is part of your AS tool kit........right?

I'm going to take a perfectly good electric jack off a 1200lb tongue?....I don't think so.

TETO....crank-on.

Bob
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Old 05-30-2012, 06:58 AM   #33
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If the jack is fully extended how does a bottle jack help? Jim
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Old 05-30-2012, 07:20 AM   #34
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Here’s my jack-leg/temporary solution… Removed the powerhead and welded a flat piece of plate onto a nut that fits the wrench that cranks my stabilizers.
Hide the nut gizmo and wrench and the average thief probably couldn’t figure out how to raise the jack to steal the trailer.
It works pretty darn good and cost me nothing.
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Old 05-30-2012, 07:32 AM   #35
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This thread is starting to crack me up: We're talking about Airstreams here, which is hardly "roughing it" in any way, shape, or form. If I want to hit a switch to raise/lower my Airstream, I'll happily do so, and I'm prepared for the very slight chance something goes wrong with it.

Which, in fact, I already had happen, but it was my own fault. I bent it by moving the trailer with it down - hey, it was our second trip with the trailer and I was distracted by trying to fix a flat tire on the Baltimore beltway (which is a MUCH worse problem than a balky jack - standing along an interstate highway isn't fun) - and the circuit breaker tripped when I got the jack up past a certain point. I reset the breaker in the camper when we got home, and I was back in business. Later, I replaced the bent jack post.

We all have our limits for what is "too far" from roughing it: I laugh when I see an electric can opener in an Airstream.
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Old 05-30-2012, 07:34 AM   #36
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Why can't you put a battery powered drill on the screw jack manual or electric and spin the jack screw that way. When I had my slide in camper it had 4 manual jacks and it was on a 4x4 so it took a LOOOOOOOONG time to crank that thing by hand. I had a jack handle end chucked up in my Dewalt 14V drill and I always take that with me on trips. It worked great especially when you got the camper on the truck and you were cranking 1-1/2 ft of jack back into the outer jack tube.

Many folks charge the batteries with the Tow vehicle by connecting it to the trailer and running the engine for a while.

Perry
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Old 05-30-2012, 07:48 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zigzagguzzi View Post
If the jack is fully extended how does a bottle jack help? Jim
Jim,

....you put the little handle in and crank'r up.

Better question, why is your jack fully extended in the first place?....not the most stable situation. Especially if the stab's are also fully extended.

We try not to set-up on a hillside. Know your limitations.

Bob
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:31 AM   #38
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Gosh, I like running my electric jack. Gives me a sense of power to be able to just touch a button and raise and lower it. Not many frills on an Airstream, but don't try to make me feel guilty for enjoying that one.
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:51 AM   #39
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I like my electric jack and it if failed I think I could find a way to rig it if I had to.

Perry
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Old 05-30-2012, 10:07 AM   #40
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No need to feel guilty. It's all a matter of how you use the trailer. We camp without utilities a lot, and the move to the modern trailer is already crimping our style a bit. I went through the trailer and removed various drains (subwoofer, CD changer, put in all LED lights) already, but the modern frig's current draw is always there. So I'm sure I'll be dealing with drained batteries on occasion, at least until the Tom Trailer Fund refills for solar.

Since I didn't mind cranking the jack on the Argosy, and that is essentially dead reliable, we'll remove our power jack and save it for the next owner. (Getting tandem axles lets us leave the floor jack we used to bring along for the single-axle Argosy at home.) If I was lifting 1100 pounds, I'd probably think differently.

Tom
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Old 05-30-2012, 11:18 AM   #41
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Wow, some of you can get passionate about *anything* on this forum, eh? As a full timer, hitching and unhitching usually at least once a week, I really appreciate the convenience of a power jack. We have the newer type where the manual crank head is easy to access, and there have been a few time we've had to use that too with absolutely no problem. Instead of recommending that people replace their old power jack with manual ones, why not recommend they replace with a *newer* power one and have the best of both worlds?

Just because you've always walked to school uphill, ten miles in the snow, and it gave you a little extra exercise, doesn't mean it's better than taking the bus! ;-) I prefer to save my energy for a nice long hike *after* I quickly get the trailer set up.
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Old 07-17-2012, 08:24 PM   #42
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new jack

I finally got over to move my trailer out of my neighbors yard the other day. It was there while concrete was being poured to extend my driveway a bit. Naturally the jack did not work. I could not figure out where the nut was to attach the cool manual crank. Frustrating. And in this post vswingfield posted a manual for an old jack that seems to be the same thing. THANKS!! I believe it is simply the switch so it should be an easy fix. But...That is way too much work to get to that manual crank assembly if it fails again. Also my jack post is bent (and I know right when it happened) sigh...
I like the convenience of the power jack. So I want to replace it. 1984 Sovereign, 27ft, 4820 lbs empty, 550 lb tounge. Any guidance on a good brand and model number? Definitely need quicker access to the backup manual jack process on whatever I buy. As the Title of the thread states "Electric jack is great until it's not"
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