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Old 07-20-2006, 03:53 PM   #43
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Tire pressure IS very important to handling (or sway or bounce, suck, etc.), sidewall flexing will torture you.

My Cummins, like the SD, is terribly front heavy, to the tune of roughly 4500 lbs and only 1875 lbs on the rear unloaded. I have not stopped by the CAT yet but years ago when I tried to jack up the front with my trusty 2 1/4 ton jack, nothing happend. Had to use a 3 ton to raise from the pumpkin.

I run BFG L/R E tires and keep 70 psi up front regardless of load and vary the back to 55-75 psi depending on trailer or something in the back. From the days of it carrying a 2500 lb slide-in camper, there's still a 1 1/8 inch sway bar on the rear axle so truck body sway is near zero...it's still a firm ride!

All things considered, my ride is terrific with the W/D and A/S in tow in spite of the aging spring bushings and steering box/pitman arm/etc. linkage on a leaf sprung 4WD front. So as not to shake us up too much, I keep the tires slightly lower than some might like but keep my speed down and tolerate the sidewall flex, no doubt adding to some feeling of mushiness or sway or whatever.

My father-in-law asked me last week how the trailer pulled down and back to San Antonio and I honestly said that I actually look forward to hooking up and towing. I could never had said that before with any other trailer or hitch setup and same TV.
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Old 07-20-2006, 03:58 PM   #44
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I certainly am no expert on tires...quite the contrary. I took it in to a tire shop that I use and have trusted for more than 11 years. It is part of a chain, so I assume (I know what that means) that they have training programs so I leave the expert knowledge to them. They were the ones that put the air in the tires. I have a digital tire pressure guage and that is what I used to test the air pressure the next morning before leaving for work. Now if 58 in the front is too low, I will be the first to admit that I don't know and would welcome any advise for those with more experience than I have. As I have said on this thread and on others, I have tried everything I can think of and everything others have suggested, too.

I have a 2X4 with 2.73 limited slip rear end, there is an anti-sway bar in the rear as part of the tow/haul package (it seems like there may be one in front also, but I know it is not meant to carry a slide in camper per the manual), and I just happen to have the tire info with me, they are: DOT M 3 AH DR 21 1105 121/118 R BF Goodrich Rugged Trail T/A's on alluminum alloy rims.

I don't know if I mentioned this because I am replying to two different threads along the same lines and am getting forgetful in my mid-40's (look-out sinility here I come), but my Airstream is in Jackson Center for body work. I had planned to double check the tire pressure the morning before I hook-up and leave JC at the Shell statin next to the factory and add air if needed in case there is a slow leak or high pressure leak in any of the tires.

I will double check the tire pressure chart in the door panel when I get home this afternoon and I think there may be one in the owner's manual that came with the Airstream; I'll check there, too.

I don't mind a firm ride if that is what it takes to stay in control of my rig. I'd rather be penny wise than pound foolish as it were...at least a little less foolish than I am now anyway.

Thanks for the tire pressure advise. I'll definately check it out.
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Old 07-20-2006, 04:11 PM   #45
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MM,
I'd agree with 2air.. I believe the three of us are all towing with the same vehicles and have similar length trailers. MM you and I have the same AS here is my exact set-up:

'05 Safari 30' BH
Equal-i-zer Hitch with 1000/10,000 bars
'05 F250 CC PSD SB FX4.
Stock truck no lift or mods
Continental TR tires OEM
LT275/70R18 Load E
max cold air pressure 80LBS
truck door sticker recommends 65LBS cold air pressure and AS trailer tires recommend cold pressure of 65LBS So that is what all tires are running at.

2000 miles.. no shake, shimmy, or sway on all road conditions dry or rain.. Interstate, secondary roads and dirt. even in heavy wind we seem to be cool-de-la...

So there you go................
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Old 07-20-2006, 04:51 PM   #46
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yep az'
we are pretty similar....
my sd is long bed and has the bfgoodrich rugged ta in 275/70/r17...
these were one of the standard flavors on the lariat off road/fx...
but loaded rated E is the key similarity...
to fully use that load rating tires need to be at 80psi...or close.
that's one of the many reasons why a weigh-in is so informative..

now there are some great threads on t.v. tire pressures,
with lots of good thinking
and links to the tire manufacturer tables
for adjusting pressures based on wheel loads...

and several folks have gone to great lengths to tackle this question....

so search the archives for tire pressures, tow vehicles not trailers,
and so on....or browse the threads under tow vehicles.....
nick has a link to the tables some where....?

since most folks error with underinflation
and tires lose air rather than gain...
i usually favor going with the 'cold max'
but there are plenty of good reasons to adjust pressure base on loads...
just remember to keep checkin' and adjustin'....
and carry a pump for up2datin' tire air pressures while towing...

on this aspect of your towing issues minnie's mate.....
the a/s factory folks may not be much help....
tires are not their business, nor their liability......
so they usually say 'go to max' or check with ford....
and i fully understand why they hedge here....
on this issue....

search a little,
there is a load in the last year on this issue.....
2air'
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Old 07-21-2006, 03:52 AM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman
nick has a link to the tables some where....?2air'
http://www.goodyear.com/rv/pdf/rv_inflation.pdf

These are the Rubber Manufacturers' Association load inflation tables for LT tires.
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Old 07-21-2006, 08:00 AM   #48
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Alternative L-bracket mounting

Dan,

Sorry it took so long, wife needed camera for a cake show

This shows how I've reinstalled the bottom bolt from the inside out. I then tightened the bracket assembly onto the tongue using a new 1/2 inch coarse thread jamb nut (they're about 2/3 the thickness of a regular nut and makes a perfectly parallel spacer for the L-bracket). With the remaining bolt thread sticking through the L-bracket, I used the original locking nut and got a full nut of bite. I then tightened the top 5/8 square head bolt to further clamp the L-bracket (it hits right between two holes and provides a good surface). This setup makes a rock solid mount for the bars to react with (that friction thing again!).

If you do try this, the only trick to the assembly is to slide the L-bracket up into the bracket pocket while the bottom bolt is not quite fully threaded through the bottom hole, hold the jam nut and continue to thread the bolt through the L-bracket. Tighten the jam nut and then put the locking nut on and tighten, then the 5/8 square bolt.

The picture shows the road-side and I'm using the second to last hole in the L-bracket. On the curb-side, because of the gas line under the tongue, I'm using the very bottom hole...worked out exactly for me. Some others might not be able to experement with this if they have the L-brackets higher than this setup. As I said before, when I had the W/D set up I liked, the L-brackets were pretty close to this new position, obviously off by about half a hole. Any fine tuning could be done with the washers in the head angle but I did't mess with it once I tested.

I also took an old bicycle innertube and sliced it longways to give me a rubber gasket between the bracket assembly and the tongue.

BTW, the brackets are painted with the Sears toolbox grey paint mentioned on the forum elsewhere...I'm very pleased with the match.
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Old 07-22-2006, 10:05 PM   #49
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Alternative L-Bracket Mounting

Hi, B25guy. I like your idea of running the lower bracket bolt through the lower L-Bracket hole. Also that was a great picture showing your set up; where's the picture of the cake? I just went out side to see if I could do this with mine; Unfortunatly my holes don't line up.
As for tire pressure on my Navigator, Unloaded per door sticker 26 lbs front and 33 lbs rear. With trailer attached I run 35 lbs front and 40 lbs rear. Maximum allowable tire pressure per tire markings is 44 lbs. All pressures are cold. I set the Safari tires at 65 lbs cold.

Bob
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Old 07-22-2006, 10:21 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nickcrowhurst
http://www.goodyear.com/rv/pdf/rv_inflation.pdf
These are the Rubber Manufacturers' Association load inflation tables for LT tires.Nick.
nick and others....
thanks for re-finding the link...
but that's for rv/trailer tires
as in the marathons (st) and moho tires...

i couldn't find the table for light truck tires...

sure bob,
those pressures are appropriate for the navigator tires,
but on the super duties and other 3/4 tons...
we have higher profile tires
rated for carrying larger loads....e rating....
if i ran 35 in these the tire would look almost flat,
the truck would squrm like a noodle and
the tires would fall apart in short order

cheers
2air'
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Old 07-22-2006, 11:35 PM   #51
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Hi, 2air. I was just telling what pressures I run in my "P" tires. Not suggesting that any of you with "LT" tires run these pressures in yours. I absolutely agree with you.

Bob
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Old 07-22-2006, 11:57 PM   #52
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hey bob,
have you weighed your setup at each axle?
and how does the lincoln do with your trailer?
have you got the autolevel rear suspension on the lincoln?
at the midwest rally denellen pulled in from florida...
with a shinny silver lincoln TRUCK pulling their ccd.
it was an upscale f150 but really nice...

cheers
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Old 07-23-2006, 01:05 AM   #53
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SORRY for the DUPE. Screen locked up so back=buttoned and resubmitted.
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Old 07-23-2006, 01:09 AM   #54
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A lot of interesting discussion. Our dealer "installed" our Equalizer setup too. And they did not do too bad, the L brackets were installed correctly and the head was mounted on the shank in the correct place. But they only installed it with 2 washers. I thought on the ride home everything was fine. But after towing a few times and sensing that the front end felt too light and looking at my truck after hitching up and then measuring the drop and rise of the my front and rear ends, I reread the instructions and then added three more washers and reassembled and rehitched. This worked a lot better, my TV now sinks about the same front and rear when the bars are put on, and it handles noticably better. I get a very mild bow wave effect from passing 18 wheelers, but no sway. Prior to the adjustments, the bow wave was much more noticable, but I really did not have sway that I could sense.

My L brackets are also loose, and I am going to try to tighten them up, thanks for the tip B25 guy. One of the pivot bolts needed retorquing my last time out also.

As far as tire pressures go, on my 2500HD, the max front tire pressure is 55 pounds and the max rear pressure for towing is 85. I have found that 55/75 works about the best.

Minnie's Mate - I think I saw you at Jackson Center this past Monday, as I was dropping my trailer off for some work, and was waiting to talk with Chris while someone (probably you) was talking with him, at least there was a deer involved in that conversation too. WOW, do you really tow at 75 mph?? Aside from the fuel consumption penalty, there is a big difference in the ability to stop the TV & TT from 75 MPH as compared to 60 or 65 MPH.
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Old 07-24-2006, 08:47 AM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redeagle313
Minnie's Mate - I think I saw you at Jackson Center this past Monday, as I was dropping my trailer off for some work, and was waiting to talk with Chris while someone (probably you) was talking with him, at least there was a deer involved in that conversation too. WOW, do you really tow at 75 mph?? Aside from the fuel consumption penalty, there is a big difference in the ability to stop the TV & TT from 75 MPH as compared to 60 or 65 MPH.
That was probably me. I had my wife and two sons with me (ages 6 & 9). Did you circle the Terraport before you headed back to the service dept?

Yes, I tow at 75. Because of some of the handling issues I mentioned earlier, I feel I am more in control at 75 than at 65. As far as fuel consumption goes, my RPMs are the same at 75 as the are at 55. This is, I believe, due to the tow/haul program and the shift points it uses.

There has been much discussion lately of the Equal-i-zer hitch (brand I have) and sway. I have posted about my experiences both here and on other threads so I may be repeating myself, but my truck shifts into its highest gear at about 65 or just below that speed. At 65 I start getting sway. It continues untill I reach just shy of 75. In addition to feeling less out of control, I am able to ride in the middle lane which is not so rough because of the wear and tear of semis that happens to the right lane. It is a smoother ride for my F-250 so I feel additionally in control on the smoother pavement. I also keep myself more allert and pay close attention to my surroundings and what lay ahead of me at that speed because of the additional breaking distance required and perhaps a little paranoia. I do not go more than 75 with my children with me under any circumstances for safety reasons.

I do not tow at more than 60 on two lane roads and I get about 11.6 MPGs on two lane roads at 60 because I don't get into the highest gear, and I averaged 12.7 MPGs on the interstate, including the Tenneesee and Kentucky mountains on my trip to Jackson Center. My trip back to Georgia without the trailer at 75 mph I got 19.9 MPGs. It is a disiel, btw.

So far I haven't noticed an increase in stopping distances at lower speeds thanks to the built-in break controller that came from the factory on my F-250. In fact, I may have it tuned up a little higher than necessary. The AS dealer set it on 4.0 (he admitted that was a guess) and I have since increased it to 5.0 to prevent any feeling of being pushed by the trailer.

I know I am not alone on this forum for towing in excess of 70 MPH. If you feel more comfortable at lower speeds I certainly don't advocate changing your driving patterns. Because of the sway issues that I am experiencing I drive at a speed that feels most comfortable to me and will continue untill I can resolve these issues.

I have asked JC to check the alignment on my AS to see if that is a contributing factor and they have offered to check out my hitch installation, including test driving it, when I return if there is no alignment problem. I have had the alignment checked on my F-250, had the tire pressure increased (and equaled) in rear tires of my tv, I have torqued all AS lug nuts, and I have torqued the lugs on the hitch head to slightly above the max torque (+approx 2-3 ft.-lbs.) recommended by Equal-i-zer, and we have redistributed the weight of items inside the AS in an effort to resolve the sway issues. The only thing I can think of left is the number of washers in the hitch head and that will be my next investigation.

I stop at about 2-1/2 to 3 hour intervals to check the temperature of the AS tires and so far they have always been just barely warm to the touch on all four tires. I realize too that if I continue to tow at this speed, I will have to replace the tires on the AS sooner than the 4-5 years everyone on the forums recommends for safety. I see that as part of the cost of safety.

It may seem odd that I tow at 75 MPH and am still concerned with safety, but I genuinely am concerned with the safety for my children, my wife, myself, and for others on the highway/interstate.
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Old 07-24-2006, 10:46 AM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman
nick and others....
thanks for re-finding the link...
but that's for rv/trailer tires
as in the marathons (st) and moho tires...

i couldn't find the table for light truck tires...

2air'
Page 1, lower half is for LT tires, whether fitted to the front of a moho or a light truck. They are the same numbers as the previous link (now defunct) I gave from the Rubber Manufacturer's website. The Goodyear link lists RV usage because it is a link obtained by hitting the "RV" button on its website.
Nick.
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