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Old 04-24-2005, 11:37 AM   #1
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1967 20' Globetrotter
Vintage Kin Owner
detroit , Michigan
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Vintage towing advise needed

I have a question for folks that tow with Vintage vehicles. I am wondering
what setup you use for towing your rig? We have a '58 ford wagon
pulling a '67 GlobeTrotter (20 foot, single axle), and every time we
have tried to tow it, it feels light in the nose, and difficult to
controll. I recently read a great article from andy at Inland RV, and
now i think my issue may have been that the airbags i installed in the
back were too stiff, but i had issues even before i installed them.
anyway, i was wondering how yours handled, and what sort of hitch and
set-up you used, and any experince you could share would be greatly
appreciated. alos, I'm wondering if you tow with full water tanks, and
how do you load your trailer (nose heavy, tail heavy, balanced...what
speed do you tow at on the highway? mine seems totally unstable
starting at about 60.

Thanks for any knowledge you can share.

Thanks!!!
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Old 04-24-2005, 12:13 PM   #2
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It sounds like you may need a weight distributing hitch with a sway control. FWIW I tow my AS at as near level as possible, tongue weight should be around 15% of the actual weight of the trailer, but no less than 12% and no more than 20%. I tow with grey/black tanks empty, water tank up to 1/2 full. BUT! my water tank is located amidship under the floor. I believe yours is located in the front under the gaucho? I am not a big fan of the airbags, in that all they do is mask other issues. I use the Equalizer Hitch from Lindon with good results. I have also heard good reports on the Reese Dual Cam.

Aaron
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Old 04-24-2005, 01:27 PM   #3
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1964 26' Overlander
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
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Vintage towing advise needed

Greetings wagongirl!

Quote:
Originally Posted by wagongirl
I have a question for folks that tow with Vintage vehicles. I am wondering what setup you use for towing your rig? We have a '58 ford wagon pulling a '67 GlobeTrotter (20 foot, single axle), and every time we have tried to tow it, it feels light in the nose, and difficult to controll. I recently read a great article from andy at Inland RV, and now i think my issue may have been that the airbags i installed in the back were too stiff, but i had issues even before i installed them. anyway, i was wondering how yours handled, and what sort of hitch and set-up you used, and any experince you could share would be greatly appreciated. alos, I'm wondering if you tow with full water tanks, and how do you load your trailer (nose heavy, tail heavy, balanced...what speed do you tow at on the highway? mine seems totally unstable starting at about 60.

Thanks for any knowledge you can share.

Thanks!!!
I have AirLift air springs in my '75 Cadillac Eldorado as well as air shocks (part of level-ride) -- and what I have learned is that it is necessary to have both the air shocks and air springs inflated to their minimum pressure as identified by the manufacturer -- when I carry a heavier than normal load in the trunk, I do add a little additional air to the air springs, but just enough to bring it to the normal ride height for the car. I never add air to either the air springs or shocks once the coach is hitched.

I have found the Reese Strait-Line hitch with the Dual Cam sway control to be excellent in its application with my Cadillac Eldorado and Minuet. The hitch performs best with the lightest bars available that are nearest to the actual tongue weight of your coach (I use either an old set of Reese light-weight special trunion bars from the 1980s that were rated at either 350 or 500 pounds for the Suburban/Minuet or a set of 600 pound trunion bars for the Cadillac).

I suspect that your issues are probably a combination of hitch adjustment and air pressure in your air springs. If your coach has a front mounted water tank, travelling with it full will help with both hitch weight and stability -- it makes a world of difference when the front water tank is full in the towing stability of my Minuet--especially when the Cadillac is the tow vehicle -- the same can be said for keeping the LP tanks full as well as using the front spare tire mount if you coach is so equipped (you want something between 10% and 15% of total coach weight on the hitch -- my coaches typically run toward the upper end of that range). Reese has some excellent information on hitch adjustment available on their website -- see:

http://www.reeseproducts.com/support...fs/66006IN.pdf

You can learn more about the hitch height suggested for your coach at:

http://www.airstream.com/airstream/p.../weights-1.pdf

I keep my speed to no more than 55 MPH when towing even when traveling in jursidictions where higher speeds are permissible for RVs. Here in Illinois, RVs as well as any vehicle towing a trailer are limited to a maximum of 55 MPH.

Good luck in soving your stability issue!

Kevin
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Old 04-24-2005, 01:48 PM   #4
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1964 26' Overlander
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Vintage towing advise needed

Greetings wagongirl!

Another issue that could be contributing to stability issues would be the tires on the coach. Particularly if you have "P-Metric" passenger tires on the coach its handling will be unpleasant -- the best method is to have ST (Special Trailer) rated tires in a load range and size appropriate for your coach.

If you have custom wheels on your tow vehicle, you may also have a problem there as well. When purchasing custom wheels for my Cadillac, the manufacturers that my dealer contacted only had a very limited selection of wheels that were approved for use on vehicles that towed a trailer -- it limited my selection somewhat, but the selection was even more limited because of the Cadillac's front wheel drive system that required a significant positive offset for the wheels. Also, if tires on your tow vehicle aren't rated for the additonal weight applied when the coach is hitched, stability issues could be increased as well.

Good luck with your investigation!

Kevin
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1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 04-24-2005, 06:30 PM   #5
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What have you done?

Wagongirl,

Not real sure what you have/have not done to the car. A few questions,
1. Has the front-end ever been rebuilt?
2. Has the springs(front/rear) and bushings ever been replaced?

If none of this has not been done, I would look into doing both.
All the air shocks and sway bars will not take care of what could
be the real problem. A GT "should not" be that much load on a
1958 Ford Wagon. I have a couple of old cars, front ends, bushings
and springs wear out over 47 years. For some reason people always
leave these things to last for replacement. Also, if it a auto. trans.,
you should have a trans. cooler installed if you do not have one.

Paul Waddell
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1968 International Travelall
1962 Ford Galaxie Conv.
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Old 04-24-2005, 08:11 PM   #6
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1967 20' Globetrotter
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detroit , Michigan
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just some clarification, the 58 has been rebuilt completely, every steering and suspension pivot, springs, shocks, ball joints, the wheels are 70's ford granada, just in case i decide to go with disk brakes later. I use goodyear trialer tires, and radial tires on the tow vehilce. I also have a weight distributing hitch, and a friction anti-sway bar.
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Old 04-24-2005, 08:20 PM   #7
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The function of a weight distribution hitch is to transfer weight from the rear to the front wheels. It is quite possible that your airbags are countering the hitch spring bars and rendering them useless.

Mark
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Old 04-25-2005, 02:08 PM   #8
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1967 20' Globetrotter
Vintage Kin Owner
detroit , Michigan
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 59
Images: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by j54mark
The function of a weight distribution hitch is to transfer weight from the rear to the front wheels. It is quite possible that your airbags are countering the hitch spring bars and rendering them useless.

Mark
Yes, Mark, thats exactly what Andy from Inland RV's article said, by making the rear suspension more ridgid, i am essentially creating a pivot point, since the rear has no 'give' to it.... the back goes down, and the front goes up. im going to try towing with the bags having minimum pressure......
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