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Old 05-06-2008, 02:54 PM   #1
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is the hensley really that much better than conventional friction wd hitches in terms of performance and handling? i am about to retire and spend more time traveling and i want to have the best ride/tow that i can find. is it really worth the $?

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Old 05-06-2008, 03:14 PM   #2
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If you have not already, try this thread - lots of good info there.

Opinions differ, good luck on a solid answer. There will be alot of "yes" and "no" answers. For your size Airstream and tow vehicle - I would say yes from what I have reasearched but I do not own one myself.


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Old 05-06-2008, 03:15 PM   #3
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hi otter...

are u still planning to pull the 30 slide with an infinity suv?

if so you might wanna read richL's diary on the aslife home page,

since he's pulling a lighter trailer of the same length with the nissan version of your suv...

he covers in some detail his experiences using 2 different hitch types with the last 30-40k miles using a haha...

your 'cost' question has been asked and answered, answered, answered, or not...

there are used models regularly available for less at auction...

for the background, gritty details of user experiences (good and bad) and everyday issues go here...

and there is a new company with basically the same contraption for a little less coin...

that promises to start shipping soon (last december, no wait this month)in some color other than orange...

and if that's not enough reading and info, just go to the "hitches" subforum....

where 6 of the 7 most frequently read threads are on the haha along with dozens more in the list...

all of the true things that i am about to tell you are shameless lies. l.b.j.

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Old 05-06-2008, 03:16 PM   #4
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You will find many hard-core Hensley owners here, and a like number of others (me) who are completely satisfied with a conventional set up. I can't see the expenditure giving me that much more safety or better ride. I haven't had any problems to date. Granted, I don't drive on interstates at high speeds ( don't do interstates at all!!), that is where most people have their scares and then opt for a Hensley. This is just one opinion. I'm sure you'll get many more.
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Old 05-06-2008, 03:17 PM   #5
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Hi seaotter -- I could take several positions with this answer and take flak from some quarters. For someone anticipating a lot of miles and pulling a heavy slideout Airstream, I couldn't think of a better solution than the Hensley. The Hensley patent has expired and only this vendor has jumped into the gap -- it remains to be seen what his service will be in the long run. I know that I am seeing wear in my 2005 Reese Dual Cam purchase. Short answer -- Hensley supports their product. Can you go wrong? Compared to the overall investment in tow vehicle and 30' SO, I don't think so.

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Old 05-06-2008, 03:35 PM   #6
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This hitch type is a no-brainer. I've known for years that I would get one before ever knowing the trailer size or TV. Point is, you CANNOT get the trailer to sway, even with near-violent lane-to-lane changes. An Airstream would be even better (mine ain't).

Enjoy finessing all aspects of rigging, GREAT info around here on that. The H/A just completes the thing. YOUR Airstream can be one of the best towing even in that crowd of superior trailers.
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Old 05-06-2008, 04:19 PM   #7
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What Tow Vehicle?

Hi Seaotter,

I'm with 2'air on this one... If you plan to travel more, and want the "spend more time traveling and i want to have the best ride/tow" as you say, the first question I have is what tow vehicle do you plan to use. This is going to be a factor.

If you still use the QX56, then the hitch would not be my focal point, but the durability / strength of that vehicle as your tow vehicle. I think with that much weight and tongue weight, the weakest point of your setup will be the hitch. I think you are exceeding the "as designed" and "as tested" capabilities of the QX's hitch. You then create a whole new "weakest link" with this setup, but, as 2'air pointed out, that is a subject of a whole other thread... Don't get me wrong, I'm not picking on the tow vehicle, I towed my 28' Safari with it for a short while... (emphasis on short).

The reason I bring up the question on your tow vehicle is that I hope you do look at a different tow vehicle setup for your "more time traveling" and "best ride/tow".... The QX would not be the "best" with your trailer, but dangerous.

If you do look at Hensley or Pro Pride, do keep in mind that currently neither of them have the available "10 inch drop shank" that you might need with a different tow vehicle, such as the 2008 Ford Super Duties or 2008 Suburban / Tahoe / Yukon / Denali.

My understanding is that Hensley is supposedly going to a "major redesign" after 15 years, of which we hope one design factor will address taller hitches on newer vehcles... (eta TBD)

My understanding is that Pro Pride also does not have the shank available as of yet, but will be soon (ETA a few months away per Sean).

This may or may not be a factor to you, as I believe you have a 19.75 hitch height on your trailer, so you may be able to get by with the available 8' shank max shank currently available from both hitch manufactures.

Just keep the choice of vehicle in mind as you consider the Hensley or Pro Pride.
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Old 05-06-2008, 04:30 PM   #8

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Originally Posted by seaotter
is the hensley really that much better than conventional friction wd hitches in terms of performance and handling? i am about to retire and spend more time traveling and i want to have the best ride/tow that i can find. is it really worth the $?
My answer is.. YES

And these are my two reasons......
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AF #1

"Sticks & stones can break your bones...and hail will dent your Airstream"

So when is this..."old enough to know better" supposed to kick in?
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Old 05-06-2008, 07:56 PM   #9
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I am 6 weeks in to a 3 month excersion. I have the hensley and it has been a joy towing. I pull a 30 ft classic with our equipment runs about 9,000 lbs to 10,000 lbs. We went through 50 to 60 MPH cross winds in north Texas and New Mexico with no problem.

I would have no other.

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Old 05-06-2008, 09:19 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by seaotter
is the hensley really that much better than conventional friction wd hitches in terms of performance and handling? i am about to retire and spend more time traveling and i want to have the best ride/tow that i can find. is it really worth the $?

SuEllyn & Brian McCabe
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2015 FC 25' FB (Lucy) with HAHA
2005 Suburban 2500 Quadrasteer (Olivia) & 2011 Silverado 3500 (Fred) with Outfitter Truck Camper (Ethel)
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Old 05-07-2008, 10:24 AM   #11
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I just completed my first journey South to the FL Panhandle and down to Cajun LA with my new(almost) Hensley. Previously, I had an E-Z-Lift and then a Reese Dual-Cam. When I bent one of the loading brackets on the Reese someplace near Flaming Gorge, I determined to get the Hensley.

I can say with feeling that I noticed the lack of sway when compared to the others. The rig felt good towing on interstates, in high winds, and appreciated the better tracking in campgrounds as well.

The biggest surprise I had was that the hitch-up was much easier than I had thought it would be - my dw is an excellent director. And the electric drill with a 1/2" drive bit was an excellent purchase.

I agree with the others - the Hensley is worth it. As is an appropriate tow vehicle.

See you on the road. Pat
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Old 05-07-2008, 12:58 PM   #12
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been through:
reese WD with friction sway (30' classic)
equal-i-zer (30' classic s/o)

hensley arrow is absolutely worth every penny
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Old 05-07-2008, 02:46 PM   #13
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I had both reese dual cam and now have Hensley.

Never had a problem with Reese but Hensley is far ahead better.

So Yes.
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Old 05-08-2008, 10:11 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by seaotter
is the hensley really that much better than conventional friction wd hitches in terms of performance and handling? i am about to retire and spend more time traveling and i want to have the best ride/tow that i can find. is it really worth the $?
This is an interesting question for a couple of reasons. You'll never get an objective answer because the person who buys the orange haha will always tell you it is worth it. How could they tell you anything else? The psychological aspect won't let anyone that just spent over $3,000, on anything, tell you it isn't worth it.

Is it really worth it? Only the persons assigning the worth (i.e.-value) can determine that for themselves.

As many have posted, they each have assigned the worth/value of the orange haha to be higher than their previous hitch worth/value. However, I don't believe you will ever hear anything else from anyone who is past the 60 day money back guarantee.

Others will post that it isn't worth it. They will be the persons who haven't used it and would never part with that kind of money for a "hitch." Again, psychologically, they can't bring themselves to post anything else.

The real worth/value can only be measured by you.

Start with your performance expectations.

For example, NO sway when a truck passes, the wind blows or you make an evasive maneuver to miss something in the road.

Once you know that the hitch will allow that performance you can bring the price into the equation.

An expected performance (again, only you can determine this) divided by the price will give the worth/value of the hitch.

Holding performance constant, or equal, while dividing by a lower price will give you a HIGHER worth/value.

That's my take. If I've heard this question asked once, I've heard it asked 1,000 times.

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