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Old 05-24-2010, 10:13 AM   #1
Birdie Momma
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1957 26' Overlander
1956 22' Flying Cloud
Vintage Kin Owner
Rutherford Co. , North Carolina
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 901
62 gobetrotter w/ suburban TV - hubby & father wrong!

i think.
we have a 62 GT towed with a 84 suburban. ok, well we haven't towed yet. th GT is almost ready for camping and this weekend we plan to take her out on a 'pre-launch' trip to the cape may NJ AS park.

ive been on the forums for a while, and i do extensive research for each step of reno on the GT. I know we need more than just a ball hitch for safe towing.... because that's what everyone recommends.... but explaining that to both my FATHER and HUSBAND - who both think they know it all - i seem to be on the losing end of the argument as i have no explanation as to WHY. (they say the ball hitch ONLY is sufficient).

we have never towed anything.
so 2 questions - what do we need and WHY?

it looks like it would be safer to go with a class 3 hitch although with a 2700lb empty weight and 400 lb tounge weight (new 3500 lb axle so we could fill'er up) it looks like we could get away with a class 2 hitch.

im thinking a reese brand hitch as it seems to be fairly popular and mid-range in price.

but do i need weight distribution? sway bars? spring bars? i dont really know what these do and why i need them.

what kind of product do you all recommend for me, and WHY?

thank you in advance. this is pretty urgent as i need to find something
was hoping to find something used on CL. should my AS dealer sell used hitches?
any other ideas for reasonably priced hitches?

'57 Overlander | '56 Flying Cloud | '51 Spartanette
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Old 05-24-2010, 10:44 AM   #2
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2012 23' FB Flying Cloud
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Does your '84 Suburban not have a factory hitch receiver? If not, I would go with at least a Class III. I wouldn't waste my money on a Class II receiver for a Suburban.

Remember in towing that more is ALWAYS better than less or marginal.

When you are all set up to go camping, your GT in going to top 3,000#, and with filled LP tanks, your tongue weight is probably going to come in near 500#, and should. Loading the trailer to reduce tongue weight can result in disaster. It's tongue weight that gives stability to the whole towing rig.

As far as weight distribution/sway control hitch systems are concerned, there are several things to consider. How much weight in gear and passengers is this Suburban going to be hauling? This weight counts in the overall load.

Are you going to be towing at Interstate Highway speeds or just around town? If you are going to be traveling a great distance at over 60 mph, you are probably going to want some type of weight distribution/sway control hitch.

If your husband and dad are highly experienced at towing heavy trailers at highway speeds, they may want to hook up and give it a test run on a local highway, and see how it feels without any type of control hitch. They should make sure that they have a comparable travel weight in both the trailer and Suburban when they do this. If they are comfortable with the rig's behavior, it might be OK, but it would not be within my comfort zone. I tend to lean toward overkill when it comes to safety and control.


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Old 05-24-2010, 02:27 PM   #3
Birdie Momma
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1957 26' Overlander
1956 22' Flying Cloud
Vintage Kin Owner
Rutherford Co. , North Carolina
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 901
Originally Posted by moosetags View Post
If your husband and dad are highly experienced at towing heavy trailers at highway speeds..........
HAHA! that's just the thing - they have no experience towing ANYTHING! but they are GUYS. they think that cars and trailers are in their genetic material. To them it's like asking how they know how to pee standing up - they just "know"!

yes, there is a hitch receiver, i think i was using the wrong term. i guess what im looking for is more like a towing system. and no, we wont be packing heavy. there's 2 of us in a 84 suburban - we could live full time in that, without the trailer.

yes, we will be doing a cross-country trip in sept. highway driving is happening.
after more research i *think* i want a reese Straight Line Dual Cam 600lb/6000lb.
is there a risk in getting oversized weight dist. bars, etc? the tounge weight will be heavy, but the trailer weight is almost 1/2 of what its rated for!

or is the #550 more inline with what i need? (just cant seem to find it sold anywhere)...
'57 Overlander | '56 Flying Cloud | '51 Spartanette
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