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Old 07-02-2013, 02:05 PM   #435
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The question above is, do I need sway control? I truly believe for my situation I do not. I have a 21 foot truck pulling a 25 foot camper. Not just a camper but in airstream that is low-profile low to the ground and very aerodynamic. That's why I spent $80,000 versus 20,000 On a camper. When I purchased my airstream two and half years ago I looked extensively into the different types of equalization and sway systems that might possibly be needed. The more I read the more I studied the more confused I Became. However after a Long conclusion in my eyes, I really felt like most of the equalization and sway systems were for either the very large trailers with small toe vehicles or trailers that were improperly balanced are overloaded. I am more of a minimalistic and don't even come close to the gross weight of my Airstream. Now after traveling in 60 mile an hour plus winds 18 wheelers passing going uphill downhill and turns I feel that I am very safe with the equipment I Have, and with my driving skills, its a perfect match.

Unfortunately sway control cannot do anything for the idiots on the road when we are Stopped at a red light and someone Plows into the back of us. Or someone sideswipes us while we're parked. When pulling a trailer we should drive defensively as possible, Drive properly loaded and balanced trailer. As well as a properly loaded Tow Vehicle . And do all that is possible to protect our lives and Well as others.

I truly believe for my situation I am doing the very best thing

Just my thoughts it's not for everyone
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:32 PM   #436
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Im really interested in your anecdote Dogs....I mean that..not snarky or anything.

When you have towed "free balling"...in such adverse conditions that you describe...did you notice sway? Or does your TV + TT track in line with literally no sway? Or is there only a "tiny" bit of sway at those times and not enough to concern you?

SOrry, I am fascinated, and want specifics.
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:57 PM   #437
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It tracks in line with no sway. In fact I have a go Pro camera located in the very rear street side facing forward of the airstream and I can watch the movies and it tracks very very straight. Big rigs passing have no effect. Strong winds have no effect. My normal speed is 65 mph and sometimes 70. While passing at 75+ it is Straight as an arrow.
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:01 PM   #438
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Wink

No one "needs" sway control or WD.

If they feel their rig is safe, it's safe....in their opinion.

Your opinion may differ.

Neither my opinion nor your opinion is fact.

I do know that our rig is as safe as my opinion can make it.

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Old 07-02-2013, 03:13 PM   #439
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please post one of these videos on youtube and provide the link.

Its seems impossible that this is the case....if your rig in such conditions does literally not sway...then it would be something extraordinary based on responses in this forum....I would love to see the video of this trailer at 70mph, and passing in the other lane a huge truck and seeing what happens...
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:18 PM   #440
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaBigDogs View Post
It tracks in line with no sway. In fact I have a go Pro camera located in the very rear street side facing forward of the airstream and I can watch the movies and it tracks very very straight. Big rigs passing have no effect. Strong winds have no effect. My normal speed is 65 mph and sometimes 70. While passing at 75+ it is Straight as an arrow.
That is absolutely amazing. I know our 30' was set into a pretty bad sway when a pickup towing a racecar trailer passed at high speed with the sway control turned off. Our trailer is 5' longer and probably heavier than yours, but I can't believe that is enough to make our experiences so different.
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:19 PM   #441
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Of course, Mr. Cross knows this...and this will be semantical...but "opinion" by definition implies:

"A view or judgment formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge"

If "facts" indeed weigh on a point of question, opinions become highly secondary...opinions will need to be informed by facts, or they become foolish opinions.

My googling on this topic so far is struggling to find good review articles with citations to safety data, accident stats as it relates to travel trailers...not sure where to find this data...Im familiar with medical resources..not so much in this area of science...but surely we can cite actual data in such a post to make a point..rather than blabber on and on and on about peoples opinions (everyone has one).

SCIENCE WORKS!
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:21 PM   #442
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Originally Posted by Skater View Post
That is absolutely amazing. I know our 30' was set into a pretty bad sway when a pickup towing a racecar trailer passed at high speed with the sway control turned off. Our trailer is 5' longer and probably heavier than yours, but I can't believe that is enough to make our experiences so different.
Skepticism is warranted...a wise man once said:

"extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence"
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:39 PM   #443
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My Vantage is 23 ft overall, tongue weight is 700#, and weighs about 5,500 lbs overall. I have two rather large trucks - one a Chevy 2500 duramax crew cab and the other a 1500 Suburban.

The 2500 can tow the trailer with a simple ball hitch and that is it. Excellent road manners. Probably because the truck has a long wheelbase as well is very heavy - around 7400lbs. Now my Suburban is another story. It absolutely needs the WD and the sway control - I use an Equalizer that works very well. The Suburban still has a long wheelbase compared to most SUVs and 1/2 ton trucks. But it's softly sprung and that makes all the difference.

A big F250 should be able to handle a 25 or 27 foot trailer without an elaborate setup unless the trailer's weight distribution is unusual.
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:40 PM   #444
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Geek,

Have a look at this site:

Bailey of Bristol - Caravan Stability Studies

Proper testing, albeit of European caravans that don't use WD or sway control, but the physics are the same.

Also try this this study:

http://people.bath.ac.uk/en8cjk/Caravan.pdf

Note that I am the messenger and have none of the answers!
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:46 PM   #445
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I think we need to lower the temperature readings in this thread a few degrees, folks. Please follow our "be nice" rule; avoid ad hominem attacks at all costs, for the consequences are not very nice.

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Old 07-03-2013, 07:25 AM   #446
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Thanks MrUKToad. I'll have to take a look at those when I get a chance. I thought the European spec'd Airstreams are built lighter than ours, which certainly would factor into the equations.

I just know my firsthand experience, and I'll stick with some sort of WD and sway control for our rig. Perhaps there's a bit too much weight on our tongue given the gigantic inverter and third battery that were installed (along with the spare tire underneath).
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Old 07-03-2013, 07:45 AM   #447
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skater View Post
Thanks MrUKToad. I'll have to take a look at those when I get a chance. I thought the European spec'd Airstreams are built lighter than ours, which certainly would factor into the equations.

I just know my firsthand experience, and I'll stick with some sort of WD and sway control for our rig. Perhaps there's a bit too much weight on our tongue given the gigantic inverter and third battery that were installed (along with the spare tire underneath).
The dynamics of towing remain the same whether you have a 34' Classic or a small utility trailer behind you.

"Freeballing" will work for some people, I'm sure, but why anyone would want to pass up additional help in the form of WD and sway control/elimination is beyond me. I don't see any disadvantages to having such systems when towing and their cost, relative to the cost of the TV and the trailer are miniscule.
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Old 07-03-2013, 07:56 AM   #448
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Another anecdotal story:
Back in April my sister purchased a 2008 Airstream 25' Safari. It did not come with a hitch so we towed it home (200 miles away) without weight distribution or sway equipment. My tow vehicle is a 2500, shortbed with wheel base of 140.5" which by all means is plenty of vehicle. The truck can handle the load fine without all the equipment BUT you knew the trailer was back there.
The Safari has a tongue weight over 800 lbs so we had the porpoising effect hitting the bad spots. We felt every large truck and cross wind, not to a dangerous effect but it was there. At the end of the day I can say you could tow like this but it was NOT RELAXING and you had to be very attentive to what was going on around you. The trailer reacted so much quicker that it would have been easier to get into trouble. Towing without the required equipment is fine for going to a local spot a few miles away but it's definitely not for me - give me safety equipment. I have been spoiled with the HAHA hitch.
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