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Old 04-24-2016, 11:56 PM   #1
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Adjusting the Equalizer hitch

I've read quite a few threads regarding this hitch. I just want to make sure that I am going about this the right way. The front of my truck measures 42 inches to the fender. With and without the bars, rated for 1200 pounds, the front measures at 42 1/2 inches. Seems like no weight is being transferred to the front axle. The truck and the Airstream are both level. Haven't had the time yet to drive to another city to get on a CAT scale. In order to drop the front a 1/2 inch how many washers should I use? Right now the hitch has 3 and the ball is perfectly straight up and down. Am I going about this the right way? Or is there an easier way to do this? Thanks!

Zane and Diane

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Old 04-25-2016, 05:01 AM   #2
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You could try one additional washer to see if it adjusts back to, or halfway back to 42 inches. 4 washers is supposed to be the minimum.

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Old 04-25-2016, 11:36 AM   #3
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Thanks for the response. Guess I'll have to contact Equalizer and get a couple more spacers.

Zane and Diane
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Old 04-25-2016, 11:37 AM   #4
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Grade 8 washers can be found at any good hardware store.
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Old 04-25-2016, 12:07 PM   #5
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What are the front and rear wheel well measurements with no load in the truck bed and no trailer?

What are the front and rear wheel well measurements with normal travel load in the bed and Airstream on the receiver but no weight distribution applied?

Then what are the front and rear wheel well measurements with normal travel load in the bed and Airstream on the receiver and weight distribution applied?

Our rig tows and handles best when we return the front fender well to its original height (rear wheel well within a couple of inches but never higher than unloaded). Otherwise we get some porpoising and lightened steering.

That's the three sets of measurements we use to set things up, then take the loaded-for-travel combination to a truck scale to ensure axle and tire ratings of truck and trailer are within limits, and how close the whole rig is to GCWR. For our setup, I like both truck axle loads close to equal. If not I move some stuff forward in the truck bed, or get some out of there. Balance the trailer load similarly, I don't like it excessively heavy in front, it needs 750 - 1000 lbs hitch weight for good control and easy weight distribution.
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Old 04-26-2016, 10:48 AM   #6
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Equal-i-zer will send you extra washers at no expense.
It took me 2 years of raising and lowering the L-brackets and adding washers till I got it where I want it.
All you can do is set it up differently and try it several times until you get the best happy medium of ride quality, weight distribution, and sway control.
For my rig it took 6 washers to get to this happy medium.
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Old 04-26-2016, 11:07 AM   #7
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If I go to a hardware store to get the washers what size is the hole in them? I may just see if Equalizer will send me some since I need to find a good torque wrench. To answer some other questions the front sits at 42 inches unloaded. It then goes up to 42 1/2 inches with or without the bars. The rear sits at 43 3/4 inches high. With or without the bars it sits at 42 inches. Power Wagon springs are a little softer than standard 3/4 springs. If I can just get the front to drop a bit I am sure the rear will come up a bit. Should still be relatively level. For those that are wondering the rear axle is rated at 6200 pounds. Now I realize that this is with an empty water tank on the Airstream. The weather is still hovering around freezing at night. I know I should measure again once the tank is filled. I am thinking that 1 to 2 washers ought to do the trick whether the tank is filled or not. Thoughts?

Zane and Diane
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Old 04-26-2016, 05:13 PM   #8
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Zane and Diane--

After using our Equalizr for years, we changed to a new TV with much stiffer suspension. After using with no new setting for a year, we finally refined the Equalizr with three other friends who own Equalizrs and consulting with Equalizr as well, so we've learned a lot.

With only three spacer washers and no front fender height difference, you are likely getting little or no weight transfer, which also means you're probably getting little friction antisway, too. I would start by adding one washer and then looking at the whole rig, since your ball should not be straight up and down but tilted back.

From Equalizr: One space washer equals about one bolt setting change in the L bars, or one height setting moving the ball up or down.
They prefer that you change the actual amount of WD/friction sway control using the spacers, but fine to temporarily use a quicker L bracket adjustment to find out if it feels better before making your final adjustment with the spacers after returning the L bars to the original position.

So start with the ball height and with both trailer and TV loaded fir the road. When hitched with the WD engaged, is your trailer level or slightly nose down? If not, adjust the ball height accordingly (you'll need a breaker bar for that.) Make a note as to how many holes you moved up or down.

After the trailer is pretty level or slightly nose down, check out the L bracket and the bars. Hopefully, you're not fully to the extreme adjustment either way. If you dropped the ball an inch, then you need to drop the L brackets the same way. And vice versa if you went up. The bars should be roughly level-neither way up or way down in angle.

Finally, you'll use additional washers to compensate for any change you may have made in the relative position of the ball height and L brackets. If you left them alone, or moved both together, no problem.

Adding one spacer washer is about the same as tightening by moving the L brackets up one hole. But the head of the hitch should NOT be straight up and down--it should be tilted back. Four spacer washers is a good starting point.

As an example, when we retuned, our new TV's hitch receiver was about an inch higher than the old. We dropped the ball and the L brackets one to match. We now had the trailer slightly nose down and the bars pretty level. But we had very little weight distribution engaged as determined by measuring the front fender before and after.

Adding one more washer did the trick--it moved the front fenders exactly halfway between no trailer and trailer on but no bars engaged.

Our final step will be to test more WD/friction sway control by moving up the L brackets one hole to see where that puts the front measurement (while double checking that we're not actually lifting the rear ended lighter than it was while trailer unattached!) This is quicker and easier than immediately trying another washer. if this is still quite close to original unloaded height on the front without going over, I expect that we will like the rig's feel even better when we test drive it, even though it felt good on our last sprint from southern Texas to Amarillo and Amarillo to Los Angeles.

The final step will then be to return the L brackets, and add one more spacer washer for the same effect. We currently have 5, and that would take us to 6.

Good luck. You're going to love the Equalizr once you have it balanced correctly for your TV.
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Old 04-28-2016, 12:15 AM   #9
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Thanks for all of that good information. I was hoping to work on the hitch this weekend. However, snow is in the forecast for the next few days. Have to love Colorado! Once the weather calms down I can get to work.

Zane and Diane
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Old 04-28-2016, 08:52 PM   #10
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I called Equalizer and spoke with Rick Evans their technical advisor and he was very helpful in helping set up my hitch and making sure it was equalized. No pun intended. I sent him some photos of the set up when done and he confirmed that everything was set up properly for my 19' 2007 Bambi and my 2016 Tundra. Just saying he is a very good resource and very helpful.

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