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Old 10-17-2014, 08:19 AM   #15
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paula, return the shovel. next time mut a lego block under the front tires. as many of us have found, both vehicles need to be level on the horizontal plane too. i use a 2' level to match the angles. i want to taper that stinger edge too!
This is what concerns me about the Hensley/ProPride setup, and when I asked about it one time, someone responded with a link to the PP website with a video explaining how the hitch worked...um, thanks, but that wasn't my question.

In our case, our driveway is level front to back where the camper is parked, but the pickup is nose down when I'm hooking up because the driveway slopes that way. Similarly, the camper's section has a slope to the side to let rain run off, so the trailer is up on blocks on one side. In other words, hooking up with a PPP hitch means I'd be dealing with two issues - one where the camper is 'rotated' relative to the truck, and the second where the truck and trailer aren't necessarily in the same horizontal plane. It's not clear to me, without trying it, how much trouble that would cause. I certainly don't want to have to go through a headache like Paula's every time I have to hook up at home.
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Old 10-17-2014, 08:27 AM   #16
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WOW! I feel stressed just reading of your experience.
I usually try to make myself feel better when something like this happens by making a good strong drink and convincing myself I learned something from the bad experience..... ;-)
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Old 10-17-2014, 08:33 AM   #17
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WOW Paula that was a great write up, perfectly discribing my feelings of incompetence at hooking up ( the trailer, that is) while traveling with my brother and his 30' stream with a Hensley system.

We did a fun trip a couple of years ago but had diffulties getting hooked up each time the conditions were less than perfect. I think this was one of the factors leading me to getting my 345 motorhome.

Well we are now on another trip and just went thru it all again yesterday, what a struggle.
Oh those ruts in the front of the sites are caused by other campers backing and filling again and again trying to get hitched themselves :-)

So I find myself thinking about the years I spent as a small boat operator
Launching and retrieving three boats each day hooking and rehooking to the trailers till it was a piece of cake. And thought this experience would help in this case but noo! Still a struggle.

My bro says it not allways this hard. And looks sideways at me as if its some anti trailering karma coming with me.
So it comes as some relief to hear that it's not just some personal karmic debt I'm working off.

Maybe getting out the grinder an tapering those edges would help.
I'm afraid if I had one yesterday there might not have been enough left to Worry about hooking up with. Just a big pile of metal dust

At any rate a good chuckle always helps, and you brought us a good one.

Do folks keep the stinger greased, KY jelly or what, just asking?

There is some saying about the angle of the dangle, that could apply here but I'm just not sure how.

It's all good now as we are sitting in a pull thru and still hooked up.

Cheers Richard
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Old 10-17-2014, 08:40 AM   #18
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My only tidbit of advice is that when you have to camp in a non-level site and the TV is turned on angle or a tilt, don't touch the Hensley head when you get unhitched. Leave it at whatever angle it's at when you extract the stinger. It will usually match the stingers tilt/angle when ready to re-hitch if you can get the TV aligned correctly when backing up. If that fails, resort to cursing and brute force!
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Old 10-17-2014, 09:16 AM   #19
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Miss Paula,
Our first through fifth hitching experiences were similar. Site issues, etc.

That is with a ProPride hitch.

Each time I learned a bit. First the stinger leading edge where it enters the PP hitch box was sharp. It would bind easily. So, I took a "flat bastard" to the edges and made a nice rounded edge, not even a 1/32" removed, just cleaned up.

Next, I spray "silicone" on the stinger and inside the hitch box. I the. Wipe off and leave a thin film. Slides so happy happy happy.

You already have seen the worst problems.

Now, we do have some 2x8 boards I can place under the front or rear tires as needed. Of course the square blocks can work too. With the boards I get a nicest approach. They are twice the length of the stinger. A 2x12 might be easier if you can't get straight shot.

Having a board to stick in the Hitch to determine "angle" may help too.

Also I have read camera. I can't see over top of the hitch as it sticks up, I can estimate the approach. Of course nothing is perfect, except having my wife back the truck with my guidance. I can see the problems show up and we usually work well when I listen to her tender "advice"!
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Old 10-17-2014, 09:20 AM   #20
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I use a dry lube made for mountain bike chains. Attracts no dirt and lasts about 1/2 season. I only lube the ramps and it works fine......with proper alignment techniques. I rarely have to use the over center latches to pull the stinger completely in.
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Old 10-17-2014, 09:33 AM   #21
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Too late to go back and edit my post, but I am informed that the hitch here is a Pro Pride. Another PITA as I see it!

Cheers Richard
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Old 10-17-2014, 11:00 AM   #22
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My brother-in-law keeps telling me to get a Class C like his after he watches me trying to back my AS and hitch and unhitch and I don't have a Hensley or PP. I guess I don't make it look easy

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Old 10-17-2014, 11:38 AM   #23
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Hensley Hitch Hay-ell!

I am sure it helps that I have been hooking trailers since my youth, but so far neither hooking to the ball or the Hensley has proven difficult so far.

Five minutes and done, no camera or aid devices needed. I get out and look a couple times as I approach, make minor adjustments and hook it.
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Old 10-17-2014, 01:05 PM   #24
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Hensley/Airstream

After reading all of the above, it's obvious that the Hensley is not the answer for everyone and neither is an Airstream. [note all of the happy campers with a 5th wheel] I happen to love both my Hensley AND my Airstream and both did not give instant gratification, there was a certain learning curve.
Once this learning curve is mastered, smooth sailing so to speak, is yours to enjoy ! [if one chooses]
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Old 10-17-2014, 01:30 PM   #25
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Hensley Hitch Hay-ell!

I've heard a few of these epic Hensley tails. For the people that don't have problems, do you typically camp in smooth private parks and conversely, do the people that do have difficulty tend to use more "natural" camp sites? The Hensley and PP concept has been recommended to me by a few but there's no way I want to concern myself with selecting a site based on ground conditions in addition to everything else we think about...depth, location, view etc
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Old 10-17-2014, 01:33 PM   #26
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I've heard a few of these epic Hensley tails. For the people that don't have problems, do you typically camp in smooth private parks and conversely, do the people that do have difficulty tend to use more "natural" camp sites?
I camp in all sorts of sites, and have no issues. It's a learning curve. Once you get it, there is no issue with hitching nor unhitching....IMO.
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Old 10-17-2014, 01:39 PM   #27
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I've heard a few of these epic Hensley tails. For the people that don't have problems, do you typically camp in smooth private parks and conversely, do the people that do have difficulty tend to use more "natural" camp sites?
I camp in all types of situations with my Hensley. Occasionally I have to back up 2x for alignment but 90% of the time it is a one shot deal. A properly place backup camera makes all the difference.
Anybody want to have a hitchin' race?
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Old 10-17-2014, 01:42 PM   #28
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I camp in all types of situations with my Hensley. Occasionally I have to back up 2x for alignment but 90% of the time it is a one shot deal. A properly place backup camera makes all the difference.
Anybody want to have a hitchin' race?
Yup, every time we miss, we gotta take a shot!
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