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Old 11-11-2013, 05:08 PM   #71
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annie.

Can you post other pictures from several different angles so we can see just at what point the bend is? Looking straight down it is hard to tell.
When metal bends it either flows leaving a stretched area a kinked area or it fails leaving a gag. Which took place is what we need to see.

I agree with those posting that there is little likely hood the chains had anything to do with this. The term Chains Plural is misleading in that the only way both chains could be involved is if the the truck or trailer was lifted straight up to a point that the chains became tight, not likely.
Any horizontal displacement could only cause one chain to become tight.
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:34 PM   #72
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The most important thing is that you are ok Annie.

Quote:
Just a little data.
no this is what I appreciate about you Sean. Thanks for responding on the forum.

It looks like your chains were bound between the pivot head and the bars and jammed the head from pivoting and forcing the weight resistance on a straight line once jammed.

Don't worry. Things will happen. When I backed my AS into something and dented the panel in I was freaked- mad that someone had put a board up on a shelf sticking way out but also realizing that regardless, it was my fault. Minimize the loss and realize the lesson learned, always planning carefully and safely as best you can.
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:23 PM   #73
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I understand the concern for a newbie/fellow camper and wanting their first experiences to be good ones but I find the "witch hunting" irritating at the very least. Based on the facts displayed on the stinger, there is nothing PP/Sean could have done to cause that short of putting a hinge in the stinger. It is also verification of the weld quality for those who questioned it, as well as, the yoke design. People tend to focus on the bad but there has been some good information obtained out of this, as well.

I have two Hensley Arrow on the floor of my shop (I chose to retire them) and two ProPrides in service. The ProPrides are head & shoulders above the Hensleys in numerous respects, no doubt about it. I own & run a big manufacturing facility, design and sell my own equipment. I can't help but to evaluate other people's designs and workmanship especially on unique equipment. I try not to hand out too many blue ribbons but the ProPride is what the Hensley should have evolved into if they had been trying to improve their (Arrow) product. They didn't and ProPride easily surpassed them. The end-users are the ones that benefited from Sean's desire to provide a new & improve hitch. I'd buy another tomorrow if I had a need for it and although I have the machinist, tools & technology, I certainly couldn't build one for what his retail for. As a side note, I called Hensley, ask them a technical question and got the "canned" speech...I was embarrassed for them and wasted my dime calling them.

I do sympathize with the OP...however, bought experience comes in many different sizes. The less mechanical ability, usually the bigger the cost. I think Sean was more than fair sending the replacement at his cost and for the life of me, can't understand why he has to defend his honor every time someone creates their own issue. Good thing anvil manufacturers aren't responsible for everything that gets screwed up on them.

If a manufacturer is liable for any possible way a user can have or create an issues...before long, no-one will be providing these goodies for our trailers or they'll have to build the "possibility" into their cost pushing the price out of most people's reach.

I don't know Sean from Adam and don't need to....I know what I need to know about Sean through his products. They speak volumes on their own. I may destroy one this weekend but it sure as hell won't be Sean's fault. Sometimes you just have to suck it up, write it off to education and move on with a better understanding.

Z
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:32 PM   #74
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How from the stated facts and photos here do some feel it warranted to categorize as "faulty"?
Exactly Pharmgeek. From the look of it. Something was above the bars and the angle of bend and upward bend suggest a hard turn. With the head jammed, the turn would have forced all the weight/load in a straight line, probably from the original position. The only two factors are operator or product. Whatever was between the bars and the head (note the bent up areas) was part of the issue.
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:58 PM   #75
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Originally Posted by rodsterinfl View Post
Exactly Pharmgeek. From the look of it. Something was above the bars and the angle of bend and upward bend suggest a hard turn. With the head jammed, the turn would have forced all the weight/load in a straight line, probably from the original position. The only two factors are operator or product. Whatever was between the bars and the head (note the bent up areas) was part of the issue.
Initially I couldn't see how the chain could be responsible for the damage because I was thinking in terms of the chain being in tension - in which case I felt it would surely have let go before causing such major damage to the 2" bar.

But if it is suggested that somehow chain links caused jamming of the pivot mechanism and as such the links were in compression, then that is a different scenario and I could see that situation.

If that happened though, I would expect to see some significant "squishing damage" (Technical term?!) evident on the links. I wonder if that was found?

This all starts to sound a bit like train derailment investigations I used to be involved in years ago!

Brian.
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Old 11-11-2013, 07:09 PM   #76
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Excellent post Zack!
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Old 11-11-2013, 07:14 PM   #77
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Actually I think what we need is more facts and less cheer leading. Reading both the threads on this near catastrophic failure it is clear to me that all the facts have not been made public.
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Old 11-11-2013, 07:27 PM   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Woodruff View Post
Arrow - The shear bolts would have sheared. The strut bar would have bent. The hole that the strut attaches to on the main orange hitch head would have ripped out to the trailer side. ProPride - the frame bracket that holds the tail of the yoke will shift to the side. There are no shear bolts because there is no drilling into the frame to install the ProPride.
Like this?
Backing uphill in the mud. Jim
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Old 11-11-2013, 08:01 PM   #79
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oh oh . . . two hitch conspiracies in one thread.
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Old 11-11-2013, 08:07 PM   #80
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Old 11-11-2013, 08:15 PM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Something bad happened….
---snip---
Whats important is that certain things need to be done to reduce the chances of it happening again.
Educating the user is number one.
---snip---
Bob's statement about educating the user should be the #1 lesson to be gained from this thread.

The manufacturer of the hitch stated back in Post #21:

"After looking more closely at her photos IT DOES appear the her yoke is also misaligned which would indicate that the hitch was up against the stop at some point. ---"

An important part of educating the user should be to provide some warning in the INSTALLATION And OPERATION manual about avoiding a TV/TT angle which would cause the hitch to be "up against the stop".

In an online version of the manual -- https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/9594331/ProPride%203P%20Hitch%20Installation%20and%20Opera tion.pdf,
I found no mention of avoiding too sharp of an angle when backing. If other versions of the manual are lacking the warning, I think it would be good to remedy that omission.

People who never have used a ProPride hitch, no matter how experienced or inexperienced with other hitches, would have no reason to know that backing into too sharp an angle could do major damage to the hitch.
They most likely would assume that as long as the TV and TT did not make contact, there would be no limit to the backing angle.

Since there was evidence to "indicate that the hitch was up against the stop at some point", I think that should be accepted as the most likely cause for the damage to Annie's hitch.

And, I think it also should be accepted that a properly-placed and properly-worded warning in the Owner's Manual might prevent other owners from encountering a similar problem.

As for the chains causing the bending of the stinger --
Annie stated that the installer lengthened the chains and they were very close to dragging.
I would like to see an explanation of how chains with that much excess length, even if they were routed over the WD bars, could cause the damage which occurred.

Ron
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Old 11-11-2013, 08:41 PM   #82
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Hitch inspection

Annie,

I'm about 110 miles away in Hillsboro (about 50 miles south of Dallas) on I-35 south. If you could come here to NTAC (North Texas Airstream Community) I would be happy to inspect your hitch, trailer A frame and the receiver on your trick. We have parking for fellow Airstreamers for $15 / night full hookups.

I have over 100,000 miles on my old Hensley hitch which is very similar to the ProPride. I once bent a strut when I had to panic brake while in a slight turn. Hensley has always been very fair with replacement parts and service and I would expect ProPride to be the same.

If you come here just ask anyone where to find Tony and Kit or call 254-266-0327.

Best wishes and safe travels.
Tony T
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Old 11-11-2013, 08:49 PM   #83
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That's a good suggestion, Ron. My copy of the user manual covers installation, hitching and unhitching. A final section on operating instructions while driving forward, backing up and setting up at a campsite would be very helpful.

I also wonder if those of us who have ever read a sentence in the manual that feels potentially confusing or ambiguous have sent suggestions to Sean to improve the guide?

Sean has been great with his time for the multitude of questions I've asked by phone or text, but with some 8000 PPs on the road, it doesn't seem practical for a live conversation with Sean to be the primary educational approach.

Annie's suggestion, for example, of including an illustration of how the chains should be connected is a great suggestion. There are also several videos on YouTube but no official ones on operation by Sean/ProPride the company (that I'm aware of). That would be VERY helpful - again, for installation, hitching, unhitching and basic driving, backing and camping use.

One last thought - Annie - in addition to your incident, it's got to feel odd being the center of this thread. I think in general, we're all trying to learn from your difficult experience. In the heat of that learning process, we're probably being less than sensitive to your feelings from time to time as we try to wrap our heads around exactly how this happened. It's so important to figure this out but not so important that we forget your disappointment with - and courage for sharing - your situation. Please filter through as best you can and if I can be of any help at all, please feel free to PM me. I'm sure you're in constant communication with Sean and I hope the advice received here about checking out all the systems associated with towing are helpful to you! Safe travels on the road!!
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Old 11-11-2013, 10:52 PM   #84
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Quote:
As for the chains causing the bending of the stinger --
Annie stated that the installer lengthened the chains and they were very close to dragging.
I would like to see an explanation of how chains with that much excess length, even if they were routed over the WD bars, could cause the damage which occurred.
If the chains were caught between that space when the head rotated, they would be locked in place perhaps compromising length at either end during head rotation/pivoting.

Looking at the picture of the hitch head and not the stinger, it would seem that there are two possibilities to bend the ends of the hitch head plate upward, 1) a turn with the chains caught between the head and bars or 2) a jackknife situation where either the chains or bars moved upward to bend the plate. The point of the bend and the bars/chain condition or markings should tell. The greater damage on the head looks to be on the left side.

As far as the chain information, I remember lengthening the chains to match the description in the installation and reviewing the directions- that part was documented. It might be helpful to add a section as SteveSueMac mentioned. using your new hitch- hitching tips on uneven ground, backing, avoiding a jackknife (max angle of hitch)

At least you have a replacement either inbound or already there and will be on your way soon Annie. You have all of us as a resource and contact point too.
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