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Old 07-17-2016, 02:31 PM   #29
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Thanks for sharing your experience. The point you make about the same WD is a point of interest as well. It parallels the experience of the Reese users, but it is not logical to me that a set of bars, which are lighter than the load, will transfer enough weight. Can you expand on your thoughts?

Travel safe. Pat
I do not agree that my set of 550lb bars will be "lighter than the load". With full LP tanks, the 2017 23FB has a hitch weight of 467lb which gives me a tolerance of 83lbs to get to 550lbs. So if I am in tolerance the 550lb bar will provide the needed WD. After I get the 23FB outfitted I will check the hitch weight and adjust if necessary. If I find that the hitch weight is exceeding the 550lbs, I will either buy the 750lb bars or move some weight around.

I think it is resonable to conclude that less stiff bars will give a better/softer ride as long as the hitch weight is below the max load the bars are rated for.
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Old 07-17-2016, 04:26 PM   #30
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I guess you got it covered. Let us know how it works out. Pat
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Old 07-28-2016, 01:06 PM   #31
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Picked up my new 23FB yesterday! Have told the dealership 2 or 3 times that I was planning on using the Blue Ox but when I arrived they had an Equal-I-Zer all unpacked and ready to go...Had to remind them, again, that I was using a Blue Ox.

I asked the Installer if he had ever installed a Blue Ox and he said yes but I'm doubtful. I told him that he will most likely need to use the bottom most holes on the std 7 hole hitch mount but I guess he thought different and installed it 2 holes higher. This made my hitch ball height almost 5" higher than the coupler height. Blue Ox recommends 0" to 1" higher so yeah I was a little concerned....

On the way home at about 65mph here came the sway, kinda gentle but very noticeable left, right, left sway from the trailer - yikes, even my wife was saying"What's wrong?". Once I slowed down to about 60mph the sway stopped.

So I will be adjusting the ball height down for sure. I think I can get it down to about 1 1/2" higher than the coupler then go for a test ride.

Think I need to bring up the Trailer Brake Controller Gain, the Installer put it on 4 but the Ford Owners Manual recommends 6 to start with. While I was slowing to make a corner I heard a noise when I was applying the brakes and also felt the brake pedal vibrate - was not even braking very hard, maybe medium braking. Felt like the lack of trailer braking was causing the truck Anti-Skid system to activate.

Oh well, nobdy said it was going to be easy, but we are excited about the new Airstream.
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Old 08-19-2016, 01:44 PM   #32
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Well I adjusted my hitch head down as far as it will go and the top of my ball is about 2" to 2 1/2" higher than the top of the AS receiver. I would prefer to be closer to 1" but that will require a different hitch mount.

I took the AS out for a short overnight and could not duplicate the sway I experienced the day I brought it home from the dealership. I think I will be good to go but will soon head out to Colorado for about 9 - 10 days and will see how good the adjustment really is.

I was reluctant to buy the BO because of dragging so I decided to improve the clearance a bit by cutting off the excess length of the U-bolts and grinding the ends smmooth. Now if the bars do drag on the ends of the U-bolts I think the damage will be minimal:

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Old 08-19-2016, 06:16 PM   #33
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I can't believe the U bolts are dragging. Something is wrong with the setup. On my BO the bars are close to being parallel with the tongue. I count 7 links from the free end of the chains and place the 8th link in the tensioner. When tension is applied there are 4 1/2 free links hanging down. They don't come close to dragging either.
Can you post a pic of your setup?
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Old 08-19-2016, 06:44 PM   #34
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I can't believe the U bolts are dragging. Something is wrong with the setup. On my BO the bars are close to being parallel with the tongue. I count 7 links from the free end of the chains and place the 8th link in the tensioner. When tension is applied there are 4 1/2 free links hanging down. They don't come close to dragging either.
Can you post a pic of your setup?
I personally have never dragged yet, but Awchief and I believe 1 other on this Forum have, plus one retailer told me not to buy a BO because one of his customers had a problem with dragging. They don't drag just cruising along, it is like when yo go to a gas station where the ups and downs of the pavement getting off the road and back onto the road get you.

Anyway, maybe I never drag but this was an easy mod so an "ounce of prevention...."
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Old 08-19-2016, 07:01 PM   #35
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I personally have never dragged yet, but Awchief and I believe 1 other on this Forum have, plus one retailer told me not to buy a BO because one of his customers had a problem with dragging. They don't drag just cruising along, it is like when yo go to a gas station where the ups and downs of the pavement getting off the road and back onto the road get you.

Anyway, maybe I never drag but this was an easy mod so an "ounce of prevention...."
That seems to be the case. If I do not raise my Jeep suspension up leaving or backing into my yard the hitch scraps. I can raise my suspension up and down about 5 inches. I have also bumped on some gas station curbs.
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Old 08-20-2016, 04:43 PM   #36
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I've been using my BOSP all summer. Only dragged once coming out of a grocery store, not going in same way(different geometry). It was very steep. I knew it would be close so went very slow. As soon as it touched I was able to back up and found the exit around back for truck delivery was much flatter.

I think you made a good choice on the 550lb bars. The bars don't support the weight, your ball still does. The bars provide pivoting force around the ball. So even if you have a 700lb tongue weight the bars really don't feel a difference, they'll just provide less pivot/weight distribution effect. The lighter bars should give the trailer a softer ride.
I told my dealer I wanted the 550lb bars. He ordered the 1000lb bars. I was already traveling so was kind of stuck. They tend to give the SOB I'm using for the summer a pretty tough ride. The SOB weighs the same as my safari and has the same tongue weight and ball height, so I think the experience will translate well to pulling the safari, which means I'm going to be buying some 550lb bars.
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Old 09-05-2016, 02:20 PM   #37
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Just got back from a 9 day trip to Colorado and dragged the BO one time. I was driving into a Sonic that had a pretty big dip going into and out of the main entrance and exit. On the way out, I found a much better exit that prevented a second drag.

Of interest is my modified/chopped down U bolts did not drag at all!
I think they would have if I had left them stock....


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Old 09-06-2016, 10:31 AM   #38
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Another quick update - Marty from BO sent me the 9 hole receiver to exchange out the std 7 hole that comes with the BO hitch. He has been great to work with, I have been getting some sway at speeds above 65mph and he recommended moving up on the links from the free chain end along with the swap out of the receiver shank. I had started with the 7th link engaged in the "holding slot", now I am up to the 9th link.

I normally keep the speed around 65mph but sometimes I do get faster, so the sway is seldom felt but will be nice to elimanate.

A note of interest: the old 7 hole receiver shank weighs 18.5 lbs while the new 9 hole weighs 28 lbs! I better eat my Wheaties!
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Old 09-06-2016, 01:39 PM   #39
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-- snip -- 9th link. -- snip -- 7 hole receiver shank weighs 18.5 lbs while the new 9 hole weighs 28 lbs! -- snip --!
The 9th from loose end is likely 7th from the u-bolt in the slot. That sounds about right for 550s. Suggest you weigh the rig to make sure you have enough weight on the front axle when you have the opportunity.

When we went from the h-beam shank to a smaller solid shank, we had a 3 lb weight gain. So seeing 10 lbs added with a bigger shank is not surprising. Travel is good for building up the arms, back, and legs. Just be careful how you lift. Use the legs so the back stays healthy. Hard to make miles and smiles with an aching back.

Thanks for posting your experience. Pat
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Old 09-06-2016, 06:51 PM   #40
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Blue Ox handle

Appreciate the suggestion re grinding down the exposed u-bolts, should have before today!!
But I have a simple tweak that has helped me lifting the BO: (but not easy to explain). I stuffed a piece of 5/8" nylon rope through the top hole of the hitch, slipped an old piece of garden hose over it and then back through the "second" hole - from the other side and then put a knot in each end to keep the rope handle in place and it now gives me a relatively good way to carry the BO. It is weatherproof, lightweight, doesn't interfere with any of the "workings" and it works great for me. (I just took a photo of it here in our campsite but haven't figured out how to attach it from my iPhone).
Marc
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Old 09-07-2016, 06:21 AM   #41
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I picked up a Hitch Grip (http://hitchgrip.com) for 2$ at the flea market held at the WBCCI International. I have to use it backwards from design because the shank is too high. Makes lifting the heavy head much easier. I also made a little cart with wheels from scraps of wood to rest the head in. Less carrying around under most situations.
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Old 09-07-2016, 06:36 AM   #42
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to lift, I put the hitch pin in the top hole of shank and grab there with one hand and the cup under the ball with other. Seems to balance well. This way, I always have the pin handy.
Mike
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