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Old 04-14-2012, 09:30 PM   #1
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New Tow Vehicle

I went all out and replaced my 2008 3/4 ton with a new 1 ton HD Denali dually. I had been using an equalizer hitch but am wondering if that is necessary given the current tow vehicle. Thus far, it seems to tow just fine without the weight distribution bars.
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Old 04-14-2012, 09:38 PM   #2
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Were you using a "Equil-i-zer" hitch or some other weight-distibuting hitch? The EQ brand incorporates friction sway control, so at the very least you are losing that.

As far as 'need', I'm sure your 1 ton can handle 800lbs on the hitch, but the point of weight-distribution isn't just about tongue weight... it's about balancing the load to get the best and safest handling. In your case... you've like got a wide margin of capacity that it isn't going to be that big a deal. Maybe it's time up upgrade to a Hensley or Propride where the main feature is sway-control? 27 feet of trailer can make for a handful if it goes bad...
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:11 PM   #3
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With the dually you will not need sway control. Those 4 rear tires will keep you straight and steady. Probably should still use weight distributing hitch though to take some of the truck's stiff suspension off the trailer. Maybe set the bars on the 1st or 2nd link.
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:24 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Friday View Post
Were you using a "Equil-i-zer" hitch or some other weight-distibuting hitch? The EQ brand incorporates friction sway control, so at the very least you are losing that.

As far as 'need', I'm sure your 1 ton can handle 800lbs on the hitch, but the point of weight-distribution isn't just about tongue weight... it's about balancing the load to get the best and safest handling. In your case... you've like got a wide margin of capacity that it isn't going to be that big a deal. Maybe it's time up upgrade to a Hensley or Propride where the main feature is sway-control? 27 feet of trailer can make for a handful if it goes bad...
Thanks.
Of the two options, which is easier to live with day to day? By this I mean the process of attaching, weight, turning radius, etc. I didn't like the weight of the Equil-i-zer or the 'creaking' friction sounds.
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:28 PM   #5
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With the dually you will not need sway control. Those 4 rear tires will keep you straight and steady. Probably should still use weight distributing hitch though to take some of the truck's stiff suspension off the trailer. Maybe set the bars on the 1st or 2nd link.
I was wondering about this. It is definitely more stable than my previous truck, but I haven't been in a tough real world situation yet--i.e. towing at high speed next to a semi.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I was under the impression that weight distribution bars made the ride more harsh for the trailer vs less harsh?
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:39 PM   #6
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I had a 96 1 ton Ford dually and it was stiff to say the least even with the 800lb tongue weight. I found that weight distribution put more weight on the trailer axles and the front axle of the truck and helped slightly. Without weight distribution, all the road shock and bumpiness transfers direct to the the tongue. You certainly could go without a WD hitch. As for a real windy situation, again my experience was that I never needed it and drove through 45mph cross winds. Passing semis gave no buffeting.
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:44 PM   #7
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I had a 96 1 ton Ford dually and it was stiff to say the least even with the 800lb tongue weight. I found that weight distribution put more weight on the trailer axles and the front axle of the truck and helped slightly. Without weight distribution, all the road shock and bumpiness transfers direct to the the tongue. You certainly could go without a WD hitch. As for a real windy situation, again my experience was that I never needed it and drove through 45mph cross winds. Passing semis gave no buffeting.
Thanks. Good to know.
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:00 AM   #8
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What does the Owners Manual read? GM has required WDH for TW of 400# or above. A fundamental misunderstanding of WDH is that it runs off of static weight readings, yet it is the dynamic forces going down the road that change that lever arm reading from a few hundred pounds to thousands.

Go out and buy a decent hitch, PRO PRIDE or PULLRITE, and get it dialled in correctly.

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Old 04-15-2012, 09:36 AM   #9
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You may need WD because your hitch rating may reqire it, also a lttle sway control never hurts. I use a little tension on the wd bars so the sway control can work. I have blue ox hitch. jim
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:50 AM   #10
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Question Why?...why not?

"With the dually you will not need sway control. Those 4 rear tires will keep you straight and steady."

IMHO....every rig can benefit from WD with sway control. Sure you may not notice much sway in the "dually", but that doesn't necessarily mean it's not happening to the AS. Plus returning steering axle weight has NO disadvantages.
Doesn't have to be a big buck up-grade, why not take every advantage available for safe towing.

Bob
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Old 04-15-2012, 10:32 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
"With the dually you will not need sway control. Those 4 rear tires will keep you straight and steady."

IMHO....every rig can benefit from WD with sway control. Sure you may not notice much sway in the "dually", but that doesn't necessarily mean it's not happening to the AS. Plus returning steering axle weight has NO disadvantages.
Doesn't have to be a big buck up-grade, why not take every advantage available for safe towing.

Bob
I agree with Bob. I've got virtually the same rig but with a Reese sway control system, using 600# bars. The thing the bars do is to "cushion" the action between the truck and the trailer while making the load on the receiver more of a straight down load versus a twist-down load. As for transferring significant weight to the front axle, it's almost impossible to do with a 8,400 lb long bed crew cab dually! As for sway, no, I've never experienced it - even after several years of towing without any sway control --- but I may have been lucky and now I'm happy to have it.
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Old 04-15-2012, 10:59 AM   #12
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I have an F-350 Dually. I have a reese strait line hitch with 800lb bars and an AirSafe hitch. I also have a 27' FB and I will caution you that the 1 ton trucks are tough on the Airstream. I experienced popped rivets out of the front locker and cracked aluminum skin beneath the front locker. After some research on the forum I purchased the AirSafe hitch. It has thusfar worked for me in softening the harsh transfer of energy from the TV to the trailer.
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Old 04-15-2012, 01:30 PM   #13
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Whoa! Nice truck! Good job!
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Old 04-15-2012, 02:32 PM   #14
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What does the Owners Manual read? GM has required WDH for TW of 400# or above. A fundamental misunderstanding of WDH is that it runs off of static weight readings, yet it is the dynamic forces going down the road that change that lever arm reading from a few hundred pounds to thousands.

Go out and buy a decent hitch, PRO PRIDE or PULLRITE, and get it dialled in correctly.

.
OK, I just went through the manual. The maximum rated tongue weight is 2,000 lbs, with either a Weight Carrying OR Weight Distributing hitch. There is no specific mandate for a weight distributing hitch but is does say to 'consider sway controls with any trailer.'
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