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Old 05-20-2016, 01:33 AM   #15
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I disagree with that statement.
I believe a weight distribution hitch transfers weight to both trailer axles and to the tow vehicle front axle.
When the trailer or tow vehicle sit level, weight transfer- distribution- has happened.
If the front of the trailer is raised, weight is applied- added- transferred- distributed to the rear axle of trailer.
If the rear axle of the tow vehicle is raised, weight is applied- added- transferred- distributed to the front axle of the tow vehicle.
When it happens to the front trailer axle, it is happening to the rear trailer axle and the tow vehicle front axle as well.
There is no way to add weight to just one axle. You are adding weight to two or four axles.
Improperly set up or no weight distribution adds weight to the front trailer axle and rear tow vehicle axle.
Proper weight distribution adds weight to the rear trailer axle and front tow vehicle axle. This is what is happening when you pick up the nose of the trailer/tail of the tow vehicle. When the entire rig is level, this has happened.


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Old 05-20-2016, 01:56 AM   #16
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Hi, everyone's magic number is a bit different. For mine, I used six and one half washers. I found a washer in my garage that was about half as thick as the Equal-I-zer washers. So far this has been perfect for me. From your first post, I would add washers and lower the shank by one bolt hole. I never had a problem with my hitch, but I felt the need to fine tune it to my satisfaction.

Also m.hony has made numerous adjustments to his Equal-I-zer to get it where he was happy with it.
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Old 05-20-2016, 02:32 AM   #17
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Hi, make sure that you have your "L" brackets at the maximum distance from the coupler's ball center. This gives the spring bars more leverage and room to flex more.
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Old 05-20-2016, 03:36 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m.hony View Post
I disagree with that statement.
I believe a weight distribution hitch transfers weight to both trailer axles and to the tow vehicle front axle.
When the trailer or tow vehicle sit level, weight transfer- distribution- has happened.
If the front of the trailer is raised, weight is applied- added- transferred- distributed to the rear axle of trailer.
If the rear axle of the tow vehicle is raised, weight is applied- added- transferred- distributed to the front axle of the tow vehicle.
When it happens to the front trailer axle, it is happening to the rear trailer axle and the tow vehicle front axle as well.
There is no way to add weight to just one axle. You are adding weight to two or four axles.
Improperly set up or no weight distribution adds weight to the front trailer axle and rear tow vehicle axle.
Proper weight distribution adds weight to the rear trailer axle and front tow vehicle axle. This is what is happening when you pick up the nose of the trailer/tail of the tow vehicle. When the entire rig is level, this has happened.


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Im just telling you what ive found on odot scales. But who knows maybe there wrong.
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Old 05-20-2016, 05:03 AM   #19
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The scales tell you the weight of the steer/front axle, drive/rear axle, and trailer axles. The drive axle scale can tell you tongue weight if you uncouple and drive off.
If your steer axle remains unchanged, you need more weight distribution by raising L-brackets, lowering hitch head, or more washers to increase the angle of the hitch head.
The more the bars angle down to the ground when sticking out of the hitch head and the higher you lift the bars at the L-brackets, the more weight distribution and sway control you have.
The way the dealership adjusted the hitch, I had weight distribution, but it wasn't tight enough for sway control. I could slip the bars into the L-brackets without much help from the little lever provided or raising the truck very much. I could almost slip the bars into the L-brackets by hand.
The way the mechanic at Jackson Center set it up, I had weight distribution and sway control, but I didn't like the looks of it. The trailer looked nose down to me, so I continued on my own in the direction the service center mechanic was going. I couldn't afford to pay him any more of their hourly rate at $115 an hour I think.
I think ultimately I raised the hitch head one notch from where the Airstream mechanic had it and added one more washer. I tried many other adjustments before I decided this setup was best/as god as it gets.
Remember, when you change one adjustment- hitch head height, number of washers, height of L-brackets- you have to change all adjustments if it is way off/not giving you desired results.


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Old 05-20-2016, 05:07 AM   #20
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Ok im done here I apologize for anybody wasting your time on this tread.
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Old 05-21-2016, 07:51 AM   #21
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When I take my rig to the scales I make three passes and get three weights per pass as m.hony says - truck steer axle, truck rear axle and the two trailer axles combined. Passes: 1.) truck and trailer with WD active 2. Truck and trailer with WD bars removed from the hitch but in the far back of the truck bed so their weigh is still included and close to where they are when in use 3.) truck only without any hitch components.

When setup properly, the steer axle weight in pass 1 is close to but not over the steer axle weight in pass 3. This is the "Front Axle Load Restoration" method of WD hitch setup. The specific formula and guidance for FALR using Steer Axle weights (SA) for the three passes above is: ( (SA1 - SA2) / (SA3 - SA2) ) = Between 50 and 100%. In plain English: The WD setup should return at least half but no more than all of the weigh the front axle loses when the trailer is added to the truck.

The "measure the wheel well height with a tape measure before and after" method is (at best) a crude effort to calibrate FALR. I've used it but with little confidence or success. If I didn't have access to certified scales and needed to set up the hitch I'd use it but place more emphasis on handling.

In every story in this thread (including mine) I believe dealers use the "that looks about right" method. No wonder there are so many threads about WD setup! This season I called RV dealers of all sorts in my area - including Equal-I-zer dealers - looking for someone with a torque wrench that would read the 320 ft lbs needed for the shank bolts. None of them had one. In most cases they said "we set an impact wrench to 'full' and tighten them that way". Yikes!
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Old 05-21-2016, 08:59 AM   #22
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If you only can perform the vendor measurement technique if your front axle fender clearance is returned to the the solo height under WD wouldn't that mean the weight on the front axle is now similar to solo weight?

Kelvin
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Old 05-21-2016, 09:50 AM   #23
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Hey there equalizer friends - I've been running an equalizer with my 25' international for 7 years... Finally got it dialed in this year and found the sweet spot for wd and vehicle handling... Really runs well now after lifting the L brackets just one hole, steering feels very solid now vs "light". front wheel well now returns to its original height and my rear is down just 3/4-1 " so I'm very happy with how everything is sitting and handling (trailer itself is dead level)


Question for this group - I've read a lot about the equalizer being too "stiff" and "harsh" for an airstream and folks like Andy at can am prefer tapered spring bars that are more forgiving... I don't know any difference as I've not towed with anything else.

I really like the equalizer in its simplicity and effectiveness for both WD and sway control... Just curious as to your collective opinions around the spring arms being to firm/stiff and transferring more vibration / shock than necessary to the AS? I've only lost 3-4 interior rivits in the past 7 years so I haven't given it much thought... But then again I now realize that I should have had more tension on the spring arms for optimal vehicle handling...

Thoughts?
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Old 05-21-2016, 06:21 PM   #24
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To Kelvin: Absolutely, the front wheel well height measurement method is better than the "eye ball... looks good to me" method that dealers seem to use. I noted in an earlier post in this thread that when I've used that approach the difference on my Tundra (before versus after WD) is generally small and could be affected by the mere process of jacking the truck and trailer to set the tension bars onto the "L" brackets. In the absence of scales I would use it (and have).

To Wulfraat: I don't know Andy, but his reputation on the forum is stellar. I'd put his opinion over mine on the question you posed. Like you, the combination of Tundra/Equal-I-zer/Airstream seems to be working for me and I'm not planning to drop another $500-$3,000 on a new hitch to see if I might become an even happier camper.
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Old 05-21-2016, 07:20 PM   #25
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The issue I have in raising the L brackets and adding more washers to angle the head more is you have to raise the tongue and the tow vehicle higher or start using the special tool. While using the tool to put the bars works fine I'm not sure it's designed to easily remove the bars. Add bracket jackets and you have more distance to raise the bar onto the L bracket.

I seem to have an easier time with my Equalizer now on the Ram 2500 vs my Tundra. I"m using just 4 washers and the front height doesn't seem to change from solo to towing. The Tundra seemed to be more finicky and I'm not sure I had it adjusted 100% to my satisfaction in my 2 1/2 years of ownership.

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Old 05-21-2016, 08:12 PM   #26
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I have never used the special tool.
In fact I never remove my bars.
I use the tongue jack to lift the truck and trailer high enough to slid the bars out of the hitch head by hand.
Then I leave the bars sitting in the L-brackets to store them.
I slide the bars back till the back end goes just under the trailer and let them "cantilever" out over the L-bracket.
I seldom ever uncouple from the truck at home- only when my old car breaks down and I need the truck for a daily driver.


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Old 05-21-2016, 08:28 PM   #27
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The special tool was put in the outside storage under the dinette in October 2012 when I bought the trailer and the Equal-I-zer.
It's been in there ever since.
I've never touched it, much less used it.


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Old 05-21-2016, 10:23 PM   #28
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I was told not to use the jack to load/unload the bars. Just read a PDF from equalizer and sure enough they just used the jack. So I guess I don't need the pry bar.
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