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Old 11-14-2009, 06:44 AM   #1
4 Rivet Member
mwells4654's Avatar
1971 27' Overlander
Antlers , Oklahoma
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 426
It makes my head hurt

First off - I am sorry for starting a new thread covering old question. I tried the search but for some reason I could not find the information I was looking for.

My Problem - I have a 1971 Overlander Twin model - 2006 GMC 1/2 ton 4 door Pickup wint locker in rearend as the tow vehicle. When I was gathering up stuff to go get the trailer (I live in smalltown Oklahoma) the only WD hitch I could get anywhere was a 10000 lb Equalizer E2 with 1000 lb bars. After reading various threads and pm-ing some people (which I was told (Do not tow your Airstream with the 1000 lb bars) I contacted the company I purchased the WDH from. They said they could not get just the bars. I contacted Equal-i-zer and here is what they said:


Thanks for bringing your question to us. This is one that I see fairly frequently with our Airstream customers. There seems to be a misconception about the Equal-i-zer that's actually based more on the functionality of other hitches, and it just kind of carries over to the Equal-i-zer. The spring arms of our Equal-i-zer are made of a high-grade steel that's meant to bend and flex and absorb shocks - other hitches don't use the same grade and type of steel, so they are more rigid.

When it comes to tongue weight, make sure that you're considering what the tongue weight will be when fully loaded. I find that most people will actually under-estimate the weight of the tongue on their trailer - mostly because they don't spend all day talking trailer stuff, whereas I do. Even with your tongue weight of 750, the 10,000/1,000 lb hitch would be a good fit for the weight you have. If you had an 8,000/800 E2, you'd have to set the tension quite high to give you the best weight distribution possible. Does that make sense?

If you would really like to go with a smaller lee-way, you can. You can order in a set of E2 spring arms through any dealer that carries Equal-i-zer or Fastway Trailer Products.

One thing, though - make sure whether you have an Equal-i-zer or an E2 hitch. The E2 hitch you can swap different arms into the same head. The Equal-i-zer you can't. It will say in the hitch-head which type of hitch you have, whether it's E2, or Equal-i-zer. It's stamped in the metal.

Back To My Question:

I believe the brocher I have states the trailer tongue weight is 430 lbs and total weight is 4400 lbs. Is this empty or loaded (I know loaded weight depends on a lot of factors) I just need a WAG as to what it might weigh loaded.

Ok will my current TV and TT setup work if I purchase the 600 or 800 lbs bars or should I just leave everything alone.

Thanks In Advance


2006 GMC 1500 SLE Crew Cab
5.3L V8 Towing Package
Equal-i-zer E2

AIR # 40365
TAC # OK-3
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Old 11-14-2009, 07:20 AM   #2
Well Preserved

1974 31' Sovereign
1993 21' Sovereign
Colfax , North Carolina
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 19,571
Mel, your trailer will have a GVW tag on the streetside front corner that will tell you what the trailer should weigh loaded. I think GVW on your trailer should be around 6,000 pounds. At maximum GVW, tongue weight should be about 15% of that amount, as much as 900 pounds. So, your 1,000 pound bars are not that far off for a 1/2 ton pickup. They are designed to transfer up to 1,000 pounds back to the tow vehicle.

Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy, and taste good with ketchup.
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Old 11-14-2009, 10:50 AM   #3
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 8,812
Originally Posted by mwells4654 View Post
...My Problem...
hi mel

U don't have a problem...

U've got an airstream...

ok maybe THAT is a problem.

as terry suggested USE the equipment that U have.

and TAKE it to a SCALE and weigh the truck and trailer.

it's hard to know what a 30 year old trayla weighs NOW, without WEIGHING it in 2009.

get scale readings for the STEERING and DRIVE axles on the truck as U fiddle with the w/d bar tension.

DIAL in the bar tension so as to properly LOAD the truck axles...

THIS PROCESS is covered in SEVERAL threads like these...

don't expect ONE correct answer or solution HERE.

lots of replies, and many views on what is PERFECT get posted.

read SLOWLY, take notes, draw a picture of YOUR set up.

collect some numbers on YOUR set up.

on the E brand hitch read these threads

advice on how 2 set up/bar select using CAM style hitches does NOT apply to YOUR situation...

so ignore cam wisdom on the w/d bar selection.

after spending 15$ at the scales and towing some,

U will have a better understand of WHAT feels good on your rig...

and how that relates to ACTUAL axle loads and chain tension and ball tilt and so on...

post the RESULTS from the scale and with those DETAILS...

the savy members can better help YOU dial it in...

so NO 1s head hurts...

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

we are here on earth to fart around. don't let anybody tell you any different. k.v.
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Old 11-14-2009, 02:25 PM   #4
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mwells4654's Avatar
1971 27' Overlander
Antlers , Oklahoma
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 426
Thanks everyone - feel better now. I will leave it as it is. RIght now it is in the barn waiting for the winter repairs to start. New window gaskets, new stero maybe new axles/wheels and tires. New floor covering. Hopefully no floor repairs.

2006 GMC 1500 SLE Crew Cab
5.3L V8 Towing Package
Equal-i-zer E2

AIR # 40365
TAC # OK-3
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