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Old 06-09-2015, 07:05 PM   #1
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Equalizer Hitch on Tundra and 25 foot Airstream- Level or Not?

I have an Equalizer Hitch set up from the Airstream dealer in the Denver, CO area. I have the spring bars that go with the 25 foot.

The bottom of my Tundra's factory hitch is 15 inches from the ground, empty.

With the bed of the Crew Max bed loaded, clearance is 14" from the ground.

Attaching the 25 foot Airstream my clearance is 12".

I think that should be riding the back of the Tundra hitch at 14" to be level, if not 15 inches.

The Equalizer's two large nuts & bolts that raise the ball up or down is at the top two. There is room to raise it, as there is one hole exposed at the bottom of that shaft extending downward.

Am I on track, or is this within reason? Since the dealer set the system up I would expect them to be... competent. But after reading a Thread about this dealer that I purchased this trailer I have begun to second guess the original set up.

Any advice would be appreciated. Sometimes better to understand than remain ignorant for not asking.
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Old 06-09-2015, 07:29 PM   #2
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I have a Tundra and Equalizer.....currently on a Bigfoot....looking for a 25'AS. I've adjusted the Equalizer a few times. I always start with the trailer level, front to back and truck bed empty. Measure to top of trailer coupler height ....measure to top of hitch ball.....should be close to same measurement. Adjust ball up or down as needed. Then move on to number of washers, side bracket height, etc. Reading here will help Installation Instructions & Parts Breakdown They used to have instructional videos on there site, but I can't open them now. Make a chart with all your measurements on it.....makes it easier to see where things are moving. It gets easier after you've done the adjustments a couple times.
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Old 06-11-2015, 04:13 PM   #3
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Ray,
LilBigfoot has it right. You want everything level. The trailer, truck, and WD bars. It may take a time or two to get it set for your truck but its fairly easy once you get the concept in mind. I use the sway bracket jackets on both the 600# and 1,000# hitches I have. It makes things quieter!

Dan
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Old 06-11-2015, 04:21 PM   #4
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Ray, the "goal" is that even when loaded, the "level" of the TV remains. Sounds to me like the TV is squatting a LOT before the AS even touches the hitch!!! If you "raise" the rear with the WD bars you are putting weight TO the AS!!!! I wouldn't do that!!!!

Check, what are measurements on TV, at front fender and rear fender, to the ground, unloaded and then "loaded"... Without the AS?

What is weight of TV front and rear, unloaded and loaded?
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Old 06-11-2015, 04:46 PM   #5
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The TT needs to be level. No deviations from that.

Slight squat of the rear of the TV is considered normal by present standards once WD tensioned.

Measure wheel well height before and after hitching plus adjusting WD. This is a rough-in set up. One needs to use a certified three-pad weigh scale to dial it in.

I'd prefer to see 100% FALR on a scale. Where the TV front axle has the same weight value solo or hitched and tensioned. This is a good default setup.

Can Am prefers level squat of the TV (the way we all used to do it), where the front and rear fender well measurements drop equally.

A good article on that is Andrew Thomsons Hitch Hint column in last Novembers 2015 RV Buyers Guide of RV Lifestyle online magazine. An effective rebuttal to current practice. Read this carefully.

Gold standard is to then weigh each wheel of the rig separately. Set TV tire pressures per worst cross axle load, and try to get TT tire loads equal all around (shifting gear, but don't expect a truly close number set).
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Old 06-12-2015, 11:40 AM   #6
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The goal is a level rig. I could not accomplish that with my Tundra CrewMax and Classic 30. My trailer is a little nose down. It drives fine. Nose up is bad. It will wobble and sway. The only way I can see to get my rig level is to have a custom drop shank with the series of adjustment holes 1/2" from where they are now.
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Old 06-12-2015, 03:25 PM   #7
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I installed these: SuperSprings Self-Adjusting Suspension Stabilizers
on the 2000 Tundra TV we use to drag our 25' AS. Our 2000 Tundra has somewhat lower carrying/towing capacity than the newer models. We keep the bed loaded between 300-450 lbs continuously as we are full timers and carry everything we think we need. About 300 lbs when not towing and just out exploring etc. and 400 - 450 lbs when towing because the gear that we set outside is in there now.
Made a big difference and installation was pretty simple.
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Old 06-12-2015, 05:13 PM   #8
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I love the RAM 1500 with air ride suspension. Once I adjust my equalizer hitch the truck keeps the load level automatically. Handling is superb due to the air ride suspension. Air ride has been used very successfully for years on semi’s.
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Old 06-12-2015, 05:52 PM   #9
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Old 06-12-2015, 07:20 PM   #10
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On my first AS the dealer (Andy at CAN AM) told me my TV ball height should be 19". Once I got that fixed everything fell neatly onto place for our '89. So as suggested above, measure the hitch height to the inside of the coupler with your AS level. Set the ball height to that dimension with the truck in either level or (if rear is high normally) in loaded state. Wheel well dimensions are the fastest way to check level, but eying it works fine. If you run with too much up or down attitude on the trailer the suspension transfers extra weight to the low end axles...not good for the suspension/running gear and if excessive, as noted above you are unstable.

Nothing looks as good as a level rig! Nice job m.hony
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Old 06-13-2015, 07:59 AM   #11
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Uh-oh!
I left my plate number visible...
Some people cover their plate numbers...
What can y'all do with a plate number? Maybe find out who owns the vehicle?


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Old 06-22-2015, 12:56 PM   #12
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I have my trailer riding pretty level. I use 5 washers and the distance from the ground to the fenders is about 37" all around. However the front distance could be a little less according to Equalizer instructions stating the it should be halfway back to the non loaded distance. 37" is about halfway back. I think the Tundra would handle better if I could put more load on the front axle after driving some curvy roads through Colorado last week.

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Old 06-23-2015, 09:26 AM   #13
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Re " I think the Tundra would handle better if I could put more load on the front axle after driving some curvy roads through Colorado last week."


When we first pulled a 23 ft AWARD with our 1500 Jimmy I always knew when the trailer was incorrectly loaded on the hitch. The Jimmy was light and antsy in the front end and steering was touchy. I would stop and drop a link on the equalizers and everything would become normal. At some point I did in fact adjust the height of the ball to get everything level again.

So if you feel light or heavy on the front steering then you would probably need to adjust the equalizer take up, and maybe make some adjustments to ball height to keep the TV level
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Old 06-23-2015, 12:19 PM   #14
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I've thought about adding a 6th washer to increase the head angle down vs raising the L brackets. But in either case it would make hitching the trailer harder. Depending on the campsite I've had to run the power jack up so high I was afraid the jack couldn't take the weight of the trailer and truck weight. Its only the 3000lb Barker.

The site I had at North Rim GC campground (#25) a couple of weeks ago was a curved drive through with both the entrance and exits on an incline. I couldn't disengage the bars due to the tow vehicle at an angle to the trailer and the incline the tow vehicle was on. I ended up driving the trailer out of the campsite to level ground, removing the bars, then driving the trailer around the loop and entering the campsite again to unhitch. I couldn't level the trailer with the tow vehicle connected at the campsite. When we left I had to pull the trailer out to level ground and connect the bars. Of course when I did that 3 cars decided to leave also and I held them up while I hitched up the bars.

After a couple of years use with the Equalizer I'm not so satisfied with it anymore.

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