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Old 01-21-2003, 07:14 PM   #1
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Hitch and Tire Recomendations

I'm only going to move my Sovereign 2 times a year max <120 miles each time. While I want to be safe, I'm trying to keep the outlay of cash to a minimum...

The existing tires hold air but the sidewalls are badly cracked. New ones will probably dry rot before I put 1000 miles on them. What tires will walk the walk without costing an arm and a leg? Are used LT/ST tires out of the question?

I'll only pull the trailer empty. Do I have to have a weight distributing hitch? If so, what kind should I buy? Do I need sway control? Could I just rent the whole setup?

Again, I want be safe but my use will be very, very light. Right now I'm guessing everything will cost ~$700-$800. That's some scratch for such a short haul... Please don't beat me too badly for being cheap, I'm really just asking.

Thanks!
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Old 01-21-2003, 07:18 PM   #2
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New Skins

I just bought 7.00X15 bias ply, Load Range D for $80 a piece, including spin balancing. Don't chance cracked sidewalls. The damage a blown tire can cause can far exceed the cost of new tires!

I do not know if you need a WD hitch, because I don't know what your tow vehicle is. I did not run a WD hitch last year, but planning on it this year. I am hoping that after the new axles are installed, that the trailer will set a few inches higher and I can use the WD hitch that came with the Airstream. The ball height was 2-3 inches too high, with the old axles.
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Old 01-21-2003, 07:19 PM   #3
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opition

Jason,

I can related to saving a buck and I know you don't want to blow a tire and wreck your trailer.

How about borrowing some tires and get the trailer to your camp and put back on the old ones.

This may hold you over until you can get some money up or just repeat the process to bring it home.

Just being frugal-John
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Old 01-21-2003, 07:28 PM   #4
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Great idea! I just don't know anybody to borrow from... Maybe a local dealer has some takeoffs or used wheels/tires lying around?? Any other ideas for sources to borrow from?
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Old 01-21-2003, 07:28 PM   #5
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on 2nd thought

Jason,

On 2nd thought, I'd go with Pick's suggestion, as mine would be a pain in the butt!

John
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Old 01-21-2003, 07:38 PM   #6
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tow vehicle

Pick,

I agree on the tires. That's why she's still 1.5 hours from home. Previous owner and I agreed to not risk it, so she's still waiting for me to pick up...

Regarding the tow vehicle, it will be my Father-in-law's 2001 GMC 1500 V8. I'm already assuming weight distributing is the bare minumum. (and probably not even recommended then) But the trailer will be completely empty, and the front furnture is already gone. (hopefully reducing tongue weight a little)

Thanks!
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Old 01-21-2003, 07:39 PM   #7
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plus you'd want the correct wheels too.

bite the bullet and spend $320 and cover them to prevent uv damage!

Man I'd hate to see you wreck your rig just to save a couple of bucks-right!!!!

I don't know enough about trailering to talk about sway control and hitches.

John
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Old 01-21-2003, 07:45 PM   #8
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John, Good idea on the covers. I think you're both right. Just wanted to see if there was a magic source out there that could save some $$. Maybe some of those Firestones they were taking off of Fords last year??

Anyway, anybody have ideas on the hitch?? I saw one (hitchesonline I believe) for ~$200 including everything but the ball. Maybe rental places?

Thanks again!
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Old 01-22-2003, 08:20 AM   #9
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Hitch and Tire Recomendations

Greetings Jason!

You are wise to look at purchasing new tires for your rig as a blowout can cause a tremendous amount of damage - - fortunately my experience was not with my Airstream but an earlier Nomad. I wouldn't skimp on quality - - look for an ST rated tire that has the necessary capacity for the GVWR (I usually go GVWR + 20%) on your coach. Just a small crease from a gatepost was more than $1,500 in repairs on my Airstream - - I would hate to think how much the ripped skin from a blowout would cost to replace.

On the hitch, any of the major brand weight distributing hitches should work. The one thing that I would suggest that you consider, however, is being sure that the unit you select inlcudes an adjustable ball mount so that you can easily adjust to changes in tow vehicles - - if you plan on using any 4-wheel-drive vehicles to tow the deepest drop draw bar (typically 12") is usually advisable. My prefence is for the Reese Dual Cam setup, but these issues are very personal choices.

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Old 01-22-2003, 10:46 AM   #10
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as for a hitch i would be sure to get something for sway control if you ever take the sway ride from a large tractor trailor rig and survive you will not be in a hurry to do that one again. if i couldnt get the rig up to par it wouldnt move . the tires if they blow they will tear you fender well all to pieces . and one fender well will cost you more than a set of tires. worst case you could move the rig and wind up with a pile of trash. and if you have a accident and do damage to some one else . i wouldnt want to be in your shoes when you go to court at a lawsuit your insurance company might not cover ,.o excuse me you dont have insurance it cost money. o your not worried about a law suit you dont have any thing but the airstream and a clunker for a car. why ask for our advice.
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Old 01-22-2003, 12:19 PM   #11
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Being really cheap

Depending on final use, retread or used may be an option to look into for your tires. Just make sure the rating on the sidewall of the tire is greater than the load pulled. And the tires are inflated properly. (Usually to the max pressure)

There are a number of places in Phx that will rent tires and wheels. Their slant is that you would rent to own.

And I would think you could rent a hitch from U-haul too.

And again what ever you do make sure it's built to do the job of towing the load. So the place to start is to get an estimate of total towed weight. And then create the tires and tow vehicle for that need.

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Old 01-22-2003, 07:11 PM   #12
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Jason / You can be thrifty and be safe at the same time. Nothing wrong with that. I was in the same boat when I picked up my older A/S. I ended up hiring a buddy to pick up the trailer as he was more experianced and took the pressure off me. Then I was able to buy all the tow stuff at my leisure and get what I wanted. Good luck to ya.
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Old 01-23-2003, 11:15 AM   #13
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Buddy

JD1,

And having someone show you the ropes helps too.

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