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Old 04-21-2015, 11:12 AM   #1
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1964 22' Safari
Tulsa , Oklahoma
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Air shocks and WD hitches

I haven't seen this directly addressed in other threads.

2002 GMC Denali XL
1964 Safari 22ft - 300 tongue/3100 TW

The Denali has a built in, airshock ride system that compensates for loads. It works pretty well, so well that I haven't seen the need for a WD system in the 4 years I've been towing. Sway has never been an issue and I've managed to avoid a sagging middle with load balancing.

But I'm finding that I'm carrying heavier loads in the TV lately and putting more stuff in the AS too for festivals and longer trips.

When the car is not running, the shocks take on the full weight of the gear in the car and the load on the tongue and it sags down. When you start the car up, the load leveler kicks in and airs up the shocks to compensate.

I'm looking at getting a Reese set up and I can size it to my needs. My question really is...

How should I set up the WD system when factoring in the air ride system?

Should I turn the car on and let it level out WITHOUT the AS attached, leave it running then attach the trailer, then set the bars?
Should I turn the car on with the AS attached, let it level and then set the bars?
Should I leave the car off, attach the trailer, set the bars and then turn the car on?

Any and all insights are welcome.


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Old 04-21-2015, 11:54 AM   #2
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2005 39' Land Yacht 390 XL 396
Common Sense , Texas
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Assuming you don't have air shocks on the front, and I don't think you do, all I would do is setup the WD hitch to return your front fender height after hitching up, to unhitched height.

If you have air leveling on the front, I don't have a clue how to do it.

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Old 04-23-2015, 03:13 PM   #3
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2014 25' FB International
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Your first question is the correct answer. =)

Hook up the head assembly to the car, if it isn't attached already, and turn on TV to run for at least 5min on a flat ground to level itself. Once that's done with auto leveling hitch up without turning off car.
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Old 04-23-2015, 03:41 PM   #4
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I am going to take a slightly different approach. I would disconnect the air system while towing if you go with a bar system. You don't want that and a WD hitch to be fighting each other.

Since you don't really need a bar type system based on weight you might consider the Andersen system. While it is a WD system you can control the amount of force applied the a much greater degree than with bars, and you don't need much. It will provide much better sway control than a bar system, and there will be a day when you may need such control.
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Old 04-23-2015, 07:02 PM   #5
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Air shocks and WD hitches

I agree with HowieE. Any air ride assist system should be set to the minimum. In my case, the Firestone Ride Rite system is set at the manufacturers minimum spec. 5#.
Then set up the WD system according to the instructions provided.
There are many videos on WD system setup.

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