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Old 02-12-2017, 05:55 PM   #1
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Tongue Weight

Are the tongue weight numbers giving in website and in owners manual at full capacity or dry weight?
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Old 02-12-2017, 05:58 PM   #2
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dry
each time you load tongue weight will be different.
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Old 02-19-2017, 08:27 AM   #3
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Yes, tongue weights are listed on the website and manuals in dry weight.

I would also recommend loading all your necessities to full load and taking to a big rig shop or weigh station and find out how much your entire trailer weighs, they can also isolate your tongue weight as well. Worth the money
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Old 02-19-2017, 10:57 AM   #4
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The hitch weight given by Airstream is empty with full propane and batteries. A front bed model will load heavier in front than a rear bed model, because that's where most of the storage is.

Your Airstream manual is useful, it advises loading lighter gear at the ends of the Airstream and heavier gear towards the middle (axles). It states your tongue weight should be 10-15% of loaded trailer weight and must never exceed 1,000 lbs.

With a capable, properly set up weight distribution hitch 20-25% of this tongue (hitch) weight will be distributed to the trailer axle(s), and 75-80% will be added to the tow vehicles load.

Depending on tow vehicle wheelbase, suspension stiffness, and frame and hitch receiver flexing. Longer wheelbase, stiffer suspension, and flexing of frame, receiver, and hitch components will resist weight distribution to the steering axle.
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Old 02-19-2017, 11:39 AM   #5
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My owner's manual says "dry, no options" in the Hitch Wt. row of the specifications. I assumed dry meant no propane but included batteries because they all come with batteries, right? That's not an option.

In any event, the tongue weight specified in the manual will change when you load up the AS with stuff. They provide a means of using 2 bathroom scales to check the weight after you've loaded. We try to travel as light as possible and put heavy stuff over the axles.
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Old 02-19-2017, 12:21 PM   #6
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Rich, the question of propane being included in the factory hitch weight spec comes up often, so I went back to Airstream's spec page and took another look. It does say with full propane and batteries.

https://www.airstream.com/travel-tra...pecifications/
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Old 02-19-2017, 01:01 PM   #7
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Tongue weight is very important, especially if your TV is any where close to the max. tongue weight.
Suggest you go buy a tongue weight scale since tongue changes.
Sherline makes an excellent one and have used mine for years.
Have loaned it to several fellow travelers and most were surprised at their actual tongue weight, a couple dangerously so.
Not good to pull at the maximum margin with no safety margin - s..t happens!
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Old 02-19-2017, 01:48 PM   #8
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Thanks everyone, I did buy a sureline scale. Will practice loading etc, and get weights. Also plan to go to CAT scale once I get it like I want it.

My issue will be payload in the TV, as it is 1100, so loading will be important and tongue weight will dictate passenger etc...
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Old 02-19-2017, 01:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dkottum View Post
Rich, the question of propane being included in the factory hitch weight spec comes up often, so I went back to Airstream's spec page and took another look. It does say with full propane and batteries.

https://www.airstream.com/travel-tra...pecifications/
Most excellent. Mine is 600 lbs. per specs, my TV max is 700. I've been keeping my propane low or empty during travels just so I have that extra margin. I feel better now, thanks for the link.

Editing: my 2006 Safari owner's manual says 600 lbs. but the 2017 23' Flying Cloud says 720 with batteries and propane. So I'm going to guess that it doesn't apply to the older AS models.
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Old 02-19-2017, 02:01 PM   #10
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[QUOTE=Silver Hawk;1913909]Tongue weight is very important, especially if your TV is any where close to the max. tongue weight.
Suggest you go buy a tongue weight scale since tongue changes.
Sherline makes an excellent one and have used mine for years.
QUOTE]

Excellent suggestion, I'll add one to my shopping cart at Amazon.
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Old 02-19-2017, 02:26 PM   #11
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I ordered the scale. When it arrives I'll check my AS tongue weight with it and see where it comes in at with the batteries and propane. One tank is low, the other full, but it should be pretty close to either the 600 or 700 lbs., hopefully 600.
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Old 02-19-2017, 02:34 PM   #12
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May I mention the 'tongue height' needs to be just above 'level'.. nose low is not recommended... no matter the tongue weight... and it should be between 10 and 15% of trailer alone weight... (loaded and unloaded)

Adding load to the TV like a generator or 1000 MRE's in the bed will cause it to drop.. resulting lowering of the AS tongue height... Same with the AS.. too much load in front will cause tongue drop.. too much rear can put more weight than recommended behind the axles.

Somewhere in the Owners Manual I read "keep heavy items and loads as low as possible"... same with boats, Motorcycles, cars...etc.

So, what we TRY to do is as recommended.. put crates between Gaucho and rear of galley... close to centerline as possible. Light, bulky stuff can be stowed near/behind the axles... but don't go crazy.

Be careful how you load the AS!!! You can have more tongue weight than 10%, but make sure the tongue height is 'bow high'

It took a while, but, I set ours up unloaded, verified running heights and loads.. then fully loaded AS... Then fully loaded TV and AS.. You can check at any loads you will use. For us, the "unloaded" setup runs a little higher than full loaded truck/AS... but the full load out is still 'nose high' .. about 1/4" above 'level'... on our 34' there is lots of 'leverage' fore/aft/stern up/stern down... Have you seen movie.. "The long long trailer"? Thankfully my wife is not a full redhead... and about 1/4 Cherokee...

Oh.. you will be surprised at the changed in weight of the TV full of fuel VS low.. and the weights with full 'fresh water' tank... The black tank is nearer the axles so not quite as much a factor.. unless you are 'full'... but, those weights tend to reduce tongue weight and allow the tongue to rise a bit... (the fun part is when you get an oscillation of the truck/AS due to bad roads...
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Old 02-19-2017, 03:14 PM   #13
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[QUOTE=cwf;1913961]May I mention the 'tongue height' needs to be just above 'level'.. nose low is not recommended... no matter the tongue weight... and it should be between 10 and 15% of trailer alone weight..QUOTE]

Agreed, nose down will not give you a good reading, nor would having the trailer on an incline in either the front/back or left/right planes.

I would think that when you measure the tongue weight, the tongue height should be the same as the hitch ball. You're going to drop the tongue on the ball, it makes sense that this is the height where you should weigh it. That's what the Sherline site says to raise it to. They say you can use a floor jack or stack cement blocks to get it to the proper height. Mine should be about 17.5". It should also be a flat surface in both planes.
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