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Old 10-20-2014, 11:37 AM   #15
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I just had to do something similar. I took our drawbar piece to a welding shop and they drilled another hole at the very top. The holes didn't go all the way to the top in the one we had. I also had them cut off all the bar that stuck down below the hitch head. It had gotten close to digging into the ground a few times in the boonies.
The same difficulty for us when we bought a longer stinger to accommodate the 3/4 T ... but I drilled and chopped at home - took forever ...GROAN.
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Old 10-20-2014, 11:52 AM   #16
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well, that method is better than nothing but it's not right. You don't know how high you're setting them or whether they will blind someone coming the other way. I tried for two day to get them aligned by a pro, and I can tell you from first hand and very recent experience that neither the Firestone dealer, two body shops, or the major Ford dealer in Santa Fe know how to adjust headlights for alignment. NONE of them have ever done it, none of them have the machine to do it. The body shop guys line them up on a garage wall and eyeball it. Ford and Firestone are clueless.

I remember growing up in Texas, and when I took my cars to get inspected the shop always had some way of correctly aligning headlights in both azimuth and elevation. Has this all gone away?
Yes Texas used to do that but it is no longer a requirement.
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Old 10-20-2014, 10:09 PM   #17
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Ther are expensive machines out there that will headlight alignment (which is L-R and Up/Down). I've used the instructions by automotive lighting engineer Daniel Stern for many years. Go to TECH and Aim E Code Headlight page. All types may not apply but it is good discussion nonetheless


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Old 10-20-2014, 10:43 PM   #18
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there are 'basic' headlight adjustment methods.. as mentioned above... "shade tree" can get the job done nicely.

measure the height of your TV rear bumper or fender well top, when hitched.

Unhitched, measure the 'hot spot' of your headlamps against a wall at 20 feet away.

Raise front of TV so you have the same amount of 'distance' raising the front. Adjust the hot spot on the headlights to the previous location... don't forget to count the number of turns!!

If you can't 'see' the hot spot ... cut out a piece of cardboard with a slit like you used to see on the WWII Jeep headlights... now you have a narrow beam for 'measurement'.

I don't have that much 'rise' on the front of our 2500 using the ProPride... I must be doing something wrong...
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Old 10-21-2014, 07:42 AM   #19
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I think part of the problem is, as I just found out, that NM doesn't have a state inspection requirement. So nobody buys headlight alignment systems that they have no requirement for. I'll try again in Texas later this week. If Texas no longer cares, then I'll just have to wait for oklahoma, I guess. Or Colorado. All these home methods using the garage wall and level ground sound nice, but still don't tell you where your headlights are hitting several hundred feet away. alll they tell you is how the lights are adjusted relative to each other. 'gosh, can't imagine how I could have blinded anyone. They looked great to me on a garage door 25 ft. in front of me...." Nah. That's a little too Mickey Mouse. Adjusting them to where I can see fine and to hell with the other drivers doesn't work for me, either. If he's blinded by my lights and gets over the center line, it's my problem. If he's blinded and hits a deer or something along the road while I'm coming the other way, that could be my problem, too. And anyhow my garage door is three countries, and several thousand miles away, across ocean. I'll have to keep looking for someone who knows how to do it right and has the equipment.
And in the meantime, no night driving.
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Old 10-21-2014, 08:26 AM   #20
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Before I start adjusting headlights for towing. I would install air bags on the rear axle. Then adjust the hitch accordingly. Making sure the TV sits close to it's original plane.


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Old 10-21-2014, 09:13 AM   #21
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I dunno. This is an F-250 4x4 super duty with the camper package suspension. I really don't think 800 lbs of tongue weight bothers it all that much. From what I've seen so far, I basically wasted $ 600 on the Reese WDH hitch. The truck doesn't need it. I'm thinking I really don't need to beef up the suspension on a truck like this. It could handle that trailer, a slide in, and a snowplow too I think.

But I did take advice and buy a hitch, and now since I own it I figure I should use it. It rode around in the forward compartment of the 27FB for three years. I just moved it from the trailer to the truck.
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Old 10-21-2014, 09:55 AM   #22
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Before I start adjusting headlights for towing. I would install air bags on the rear axle. Then adjust the hitch accordingly. Making sure the TV sits close to it's original plane.


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Please be advised that adding air bags or air shocks to the tow vehicle and having more than minimum pressure in them, DEFEATS progressively the purpose of the load equalizing hitch.

That in itself, is asking for a loss of control and possible roll over.

That was proven decades ago.

Andy
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Old 10-21-2014, 11:02 AM   #23
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Very interesting comment Andy! I never considered that until you mentioned it. Here I was thinking about heading down to my local Ford dealer to see what a set of airbag's would cost to put on the F150 as my 28' has a substantial hitch weigh and I thought a set of airbag's would help

Thanks

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Old 10-21-2014, 11:30 AM   #24
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Sumo springs or Timbrens may work


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Old 10-21-2014, 01:51 PM   #25
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Very interesting comment Andy! I never considered that until you mentioned it. Here I was thinking about heading down to my local Ford dealer to see what a set of airbag's would cost to put on the F150 as my 28' has a substantial hitch weigh and I thought a set of airbag's would help

Thanks

Doug
Doug.

If you need help for the truck when hauling heavy weight, then the air bags would help.

BUT, when you going to tow the trailer, you must drop that air pressure to absolute minimum.

Andy
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Old 10-21-2014, 04:32 PM   #26
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---Here I was thinking about heading down to my local Ford dealer to see what a set of airbag's would cost to put on the F150 as my 28' has a substantial hitch weigh and I thought a set of airbag's would help.
Doug, the airbags will not increase the amount of load transfer to the TV's front axle.

However, if the desired amount of load transfer via the WDH leaves more rear-end sag than desired, you can use airbags to control the rear-end height.
Just be aware that airbags can adversely affect the adjustment of the WDH.
If airbags are used to raise the rear end after the WDH is adjusted, the raising will decrease the amount of load transfer.

There are two ways in which airbags can be used in conjunction with a WDH to achieve both desired load transfer and desired rear-end height.

1) You could initially "over-adjust" the WDH (initially adjust to transfer more load than desired). Then add air to the bags which will raise the rear of the TV while tending to eliminate the excess load transfer.

2) After hitching, add air to eliminate some, but not all, of the rear-end drop. Then use the WDH to achieve the desired load transfer while raising the rear to the desired height.

Both approaches might require some trial and error adjusting to find the correct amount of "over-adjustment" or the correct amount of initial lifting via airbags.

Some users prefer the first approach because they find it easier to "fine tune" the adjustments using air pressure versus fine tuning by changing number of links or amount of ball mount tilt.

Ron
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Old 10-21-2014, 05:03 PM   #27
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Please be advised that adding air bags or air shocks to the tow vehicle and having more than minimum pressure in them, DEFEATS progressively the purpose of the load equalizing hitch.

That in itself, is asking for a loss of control and possible roll over.

That was proven decades ago.

Andy
So I just ordered a 2015 Ram 2500 truck to tow a 27FB airstream. I got the option of the airbags since I will be doing a lot of towing and thought that would be beneficial. Per the above quote, it appears not. My understanding is that the air suspension on the Ram isn't adjustable, you have two settings to choose from, so setting it to minimum may not be possible.

Anyone have experience with the WD and Ram 2500 air suspension?
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Old 10-21-2014, 05:17 PM   #28
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Hitch Ball Too High, or Too Low

Suspension technology has changed from decades ago. I believe the 2015 Dodge Truck has only air bag suspension.
The idea behind using air bags is not to transfer weight to the front axle. It is to compensate for the soft suspension without causing a hard ride.
Many modern 1/2 ton trucks ride more like cars. When you drop 800+ pounds on the hitch ball. The truck obviously squats down.
Any WD system places considerable strain on the trailer and TV frame. Some to the point of popping rivets etc.
The idea behind the air bags is to help reduce the strain and eliminate the use of such heavy duty torsion bars.
Not to transfer weight.
Unlike springs, the air bags don't have a recoil property. They don't cause the vehicle to bounce up like a spring. As the axle moves farther from the frame the air bag extends, but only to the point of pressure drop. When the axle moves closer the air bag compresses, but not to the point of becoming a spring. The bellows design prevents it.
If the TV is bouncy. Chances are it is bad shocks.
I have had air bags on both of my TV's.. One 3/4 ton and now a 1/2 ton.
IMHO there is no difference in the handling properties whether towing or not with the air bags.
In don't see how the addition of air bags would contribute or cause a roll over. Very little air is required to raise the TV. On no occasion have I ever put more than 30# in the airbags.
My '08 Tundra is rock solid when towing the 26' Argosy. Which has a loaded hitch weight of 700#.


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