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Old 12-17-2005, 10:02 AM   #1
MM&MM
 
2005 31' Classic
Bedford , New Hampshire
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First time A/s & Hensley questions

Hi All,

We bought a new 31' Classic (dinette) in late September. We're new to all of this, so I have been reading a lot of posts in this forum and finding a lot of great information.

We bought a 2002 Silverado 2500HD extended cab with 6 liter vortec and 4.10 rear axle as tow vehicle, largely based on info in this forum.

Also we decided to spring for a Hensley based on all the positive comments. I spoke with Phil from Hensley yesterday and we discussed the spring bars - it seems like we could go with either the 1000 or the 1400 pound bars. From what others have posted it seems like it may be a better idea to go with the 1000 pound bars so the trailer has a softer ride?

According to the A/S website and the brochure, the hitch weight w/o options is only 760 lbs. However, the other weights do not agree with those posted on the weight info chart in the trailer. The wieght chart shows UVW as 7500, and GVWR as 8700. So 760 may be low for hitch weight?

Any thoughts on 1000 vs. 1400 lb bars appreciated. Does anyone have the same or similar trailer and tv combination?

Many thanks in advance

Mike & Mary
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Old 12-17-2005, 01:36 PM   #2
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hi mm&mm

congrats on the new trailer and welcome to the forums.

i hope you're enjoying the airstream....have you used it some yet?

i have a 34ft 05, hensley and tow with a 3/4 ton ford....so it's close to your setup....

i'm using the 1000lb bars without problems, and a 4 inch drop bar, so i think you can also use the 1000lb bars without problems.

instead of working from the printed/reported load figures,
take your truck/trailer to a cat scale and measure the actual loads....

don't leave your safety to guess work. the factory weights are just estimates and as you add cargo to the trailer/truck, fuel, people and so on the original factory load numbers become useless.

while at the scales you can adjust the load bars and remeasure axle weights with the bars at multiple settings. this process will allow you to properly set the hensley.

here's a ling to my cat scale experience......
http://www.airforums.com/forum...ers-17984.html

and using the search function will bring loads of info on load bars, tongue weights, hensley set ups and so on.

also the use of cat scales is explained here.....
www.catscale.com
there are other automated scales available but cat is very common.

i've been very satified with the hitch and also wondered about the 1400/1000lb issue. in my view the only current airsteam that needs the 1400s is the 34/slide...and perhaps the 30/with slide. also folks who mod the tongue with generators, gear boxes or other weight additions.....there are also some older units with front kitchens that might need 'em.

yes one could use 1400s with 30s,31s,34s but they would increase vibration to the trailer....so i'd likely add some other device to reduce shock at that point...like airbags, moreride, or other truck mods.

be sure to post an update on the process, and lets see some pictures of that new rig!!

cheers
2air'
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Old 12-17-2005, 02:24 PM   #3
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I'm using the 1400 pound bars with our 34. Haven't had a single vibration issue with the trailer ... it rides soft as silk and smooth as butter.

I think Road King Moe is using 1400s with his 34 as well. In fact, I took his advice when ordering the hitch ... glad I did.
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Old 12-17-2005, 02:41 PM   #4
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hey porky

1400s huh that's interesting....and you have a 1 ton truck too?

what's your tongue weight?

how much do you crank them up to even the truck axle loads?

i can see the 1000s flex but still 1-2 inches from full crank.

really i wanted 1200s but would have to get them from draw tite...

maybe i'm all wet......well i new that already.

cheers
2air'
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Old 12-17-2005, 06:40 PM   #5
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Yes .. a 1 ton .. F-350.

Tongue weight is 940 to 960 pounds ... 10% of the total trailer weight. I could shift a few more pounds to the front to get that perfect 11-12% ... but I'm a lazy pig ... and satisfied with the present arrangement.

I crank it up to the next to last marker. If I back them off ... things start to feel a little too loose for me. Front axle is 4820 ... rear axle is 4740.

I don't think your all wet at all.
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Old 12-18-2005, 08:59 AM   #6
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2005 31' Classic
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Thanks for the replies guys - 2air, your CAT scale post has great info. I am planning on visiting the one in NH in the spring. I agree the factory numbers are rough and you need to pay attention to actual weights once you are loaded up.

For now the trailer is sitting on the dealer lot - at the time we purchased it we didn't have a tow vehicle, hitch, or even a place to store the shiny new toy. We'll be ready to go in spring, and we picked out our practice parking lots and at least one campground for next summer. Still need to work out storage but there's time to look around.

At this point it sounds like the 1000lb bars are the way to go

thanks again
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Old 12-19-2005, 12:39 PM   #7
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spring bars

We have the 30' classic and tow with the 1000 bars.

BTW welcome to the world of AS and Hensley. If you want to get together, we also live in NH. (not a big state) PM if you want infor on our experience with the AS and Hensley.

Mark
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Old 06-13-2006, 08:40 PM   #8
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2 weeks young with Hensley

I decided I have to revive this thread as I have more Hensley questions then answers. First on the sway control strut bars. When I left Oasis RV they had them installed on the top position. They loosened up quickly (I hear that is normal when new) so I read the manual and talked to Hensley who said they usually install them on the middle or bottom position for Airstreams. I moved it to the middle and have that pretty dialed in (no more loosening and the hitch bar is perpendicular to the trailer) but I wondered where everyone else had the struts mounted. My second question is for 2air. When you used the Cat scale you described the spring bar jack settings as 0, 1 and 2. I have the three marks and I'm assuming the 0 mark is the bottom or most tightened setting. Luckily I found that the Loves I diesel up at (on my commute) has a Cat scale. I'm going to call them this week to see when the best time for me to come by and weight the truck and trailer is.
Thanks,
Ken
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Old 06-13-2006, 09:43 PM   #9
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Mine is set on the middle position. I have a 96 30' Classic. Can't recall why I set it there, I installed the hitch myself and I probably did so based on the instructions. Why would a dealer set it on the top position, do they know what they are doing? I would think the strut bar should be level. If you have the instructions check it out. Sorry, I can't find mine. See example pics at http://www.hensleymfg.com/installationbasic.htm
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Old 06-13-2006, 10:10 PM   #10
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Interesting discussion gentlemen. Our Hensley was just installed by our favorite Airstream dealer and we're off on a long journey in the morning. We'll be interested in comparing our setup as we evaluate this much anticipated addition.
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Old 06-13-2006, 10:38 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverback
My second question is for 2air. When you used the Cat scale you described the spring bar jack settings as 0, 1 and 2. I have the three marks and I'm assuming the 0 mark is the bottom or most tightened setting.
hi silverback (i covet your screen name)

i'm also using the center hole on the strut mounts....

on the spring bar jacks,
since the marks/notches aren't numbered,
i used zero to denote tightened fully...clear to the pin,
with 1 for the first official mark just above and 2 and so on...

so you are correct zero is the tightest (spring bars most pulled up)


but one further point that may confuse or enlighten.....

at the bottom of the spring bar jacks, are spring bar 'links'
and i had '3 holes' showing at the time of the cat scale visit last year....
i now have '2 holes' showing on the links,
which further tightens the spring bars by and inch or so at marks zero, 1, 2 and so on...

is that clear?

that is why a scale visit is so important...
when doing the tinkering.....
because pulling the bars up thigher
OR reducing the holes on the spring bar links....
will both/either shift more axle load....


cheers
2air'
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Old 06-13-2006, 11:03 PM   #12
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Thanks 2air. Ours was installed with two holes showing on the spring bar jack. I'm going to try cranking ours down more then I had been. I will have to ask Jay at Oasis why they installed the sway control strut bars on the top position. I know they have installed many Hensley hitches so I'm sure it was done on purpose.
-Ken
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