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Old 11-07-2007, 10:30 AM   #1
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Question Reese Dual-cam WDH vs. Equal-i-zer Hitch

Reese Dual-cam WDH vs. Equal-i-zer Hitch:
Has anyone used both of these hitches? How do they compare in real life? There is so much theoretical info. out there on which system is better, choosing between the two is very difficult. Thanks for any real world experience you can provide.
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Old 11-07-2007, 10:37 AM   #2
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In talking to my installing RV dealer they prefer the Reese Dual Cam for larger trailers and the Equalizer for smaller ones. Equailzer does have a set up that work for my trailer but according to them it does not prefrom as well for sway control.
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Old 11-07-2007, 11:02 AM   #3
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I've had a Reese HP Dual Cam for 2+ years and seen it save my trailer only once. Works for me! It seems bulletproof and I'd go that way again. I don't know that the moderate price savings would sway me to go Equal-I-Zer. But I have a couple friends who tow big 28' rigs (jcanavera's is a slideout) with an Equal-I-Zer and are happy too. This may come down to a potay-toe, potah-toe conclusion.
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Old 11-07-2007, 01:13 PM   #4
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I have the dual cam HP that where the brackets are bolted to the a frame.

I followed Inland RV's suggestion of not being overhitched by having too stiff weight bars while towing with a 3/4 ton Suburban.

In the end I find this setup to work extremely well. To date, I've had 2 (sane month- one year apart) situations where emergancy manuvers were required. Frankly on one of the events, if there had been a fly between the Safari and the car that all of the sudden stopped on the Interstate, it would have died from a lack of oxygen.
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Old 11-07-2007, 01:26 PM   #5
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My Reese rescue occurred 14 months ago on a narrow backwoods dirt road. The road was crowned and had loose gravel on the edges. I was doing maybe 25-30mph down the middle of the road raising all sorts of dust. Sightlines were not long and an oncoming pickup appeared over a rise. I moved to my right quickly and the Safari would probably have continued the sideways slide in the dry loose Class V gravel. The Dual Cam kept the Safari inline with the pickup like I was a single long school bus. The arrest of sideways motion was sudden enough to throw contents in my freezer up against the door and spill all over the floor. Believe me, I was happy with this outcome!
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Old 11-07-2007, 02:11 PM   #6
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I own both. I also own a Reese with the frictional sway control. I preferred the Reese twin cam with my 31 footer when I was using the van to pull with. It was almost a necessity. It is still is nice with the dually. I do not use the Equalizer because it is too stiff vertically and would make the ride too rough for the trailer. The Equalizer is only a frictional dampening hitch. When I tow the 26 footer with the dually, I do not run WD of any type.
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Old 11-10-2007, 09:10 AM   #7
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I have the dual cam and into a 7k tow from michigan to southern california and back. Overall happy and i must admit little understanding of the hitch. I bought the 28 from a private owner and his navigator hitch height was about the same as our 08 f150. He was not an expert either, as he only used the 28 1 season. So, I have used 5 chain links like he did and off we went. The AS is slightly tipped forward and the truck is level???

I have been through it all, including the santa ana winds and the rig was always stable, never in any emergency situations. I like the hitch for its simplicity, and for my work I unhitch often. It does seem to conrol sway but I am interested in a HAHA. My concern is the complexity and trying to learn more about it. I do feel some sway and just got used to it, really not a big deal. Anyway it worked this long and it is a lesson basic design and construction.
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Old 11-10-2007, 11:34 AM   #8
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i'm having one heck of a time getting my equalizer brand hitch configured on my 30 s/o and 3/4 ton suburban... it's much better than my previous 30' dinette reese WD and friction sway- but thats not saying much.

i think when you get into a combination of very heavy trailers, and approaching your TV's max ratings- the margin of acceptable configuration becomes very, very narrow
still looking for that *perfect* setup

btw- no experience with the HP dual cam... but that may change next season
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Old 11-10-2007, 12:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by safari 28
I have the dual cam and into a 7k tow from michigan to southern california and back. Overall happy and i must admit little understanding of the hitch. I bought the 28 from a private owner and his navigator hitch height was about the same as our 08 f150. He was not an expert either, as he only used the 28 1 season. So, I have used 5 chain links like he did and off we went. The AS is slightly tipped forward and the truck is level???

I have been through it all, including the santa ana winds and the rig was always stable, never in any emergency situations. I like the hitch for its simplicity, and for my work I unhitch often. It does seem to conrol sway but I am interested in a HAHA. My concern is the complexity and trying to learn more about it. I do feel some sway and just got used to it, really not a big deal. Anyway it worked this long and it is a lesson basic design and construction.
If you raise the ball height, making the trailer level, you will increase the handling to some degree.

If the trailer is not level, when towing, then the weight on each axle is not what it should be. It should be as equal as possible.

That in itself, can create some sway.

Andy
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Old 11-10-2007, 05:10 PM   #10
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Wii do andy. I have about 3 more holes to go up. Big wrenches, on the road so it may have to wait. I have read many of your other post on this subject and I thank you for your input. My truck is a 08 f150 4x4 with snow plow and tow package. 5.4, 373 gears. I have noticed you feel 4x4 is a problem due to spring rates. My question is since it is a 28 footer and the 150 would have lighter spring rates than say a 250, is this why I have such good luck on this long trip? I have noticed on 5 chain links the entire vehicle come down some, and an airstream dealer that I will not mention felt the slight tip forward was good for handling. He said it cuts through the air better!! Anyway, this forum is just excellent and I learn something new everytime. Thanks again.
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Old 11-10-2007, 05:15 PM   #11
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[IMG]file:///C:/DOCUME%7E1/JIMGOL%7E1/LOCALS%7E1/Temp/moz-screenshot-1.jpg[/IMG]Guys,

I used to use a Dual Cam when I'd borrow my dad's old camper. It did work fine. But in studying the picture, I'm not sure that I understand how it prevents sway. It looks like when you try to make a turn, the spring bar must pop out of it's detent. So when you're going straight, is the system pretty much just locked rigid, at least side to side? When you make a shallow turn, does the thing just flex enough to allow you to do it without popping the bar out of the detent?

I realize the Eq works off just straight friction. But I'm not seeing how this works at all. The gold colored arms that locate the cam fore and aft isn't going to move at all fore and aft. It could only move up and down, and that is determined by the links in the chains. So when you make a turn, the spring bars need to pull in or out depending upon which side they're on. So it looks like if you turn at all, it has to pop out of the cam lock. So is it simply that you're locked rigid when going straight and you pop it out of the cam in a turn? Could somebody explain this?

Thanks,
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Old 11-10-2007, 05:28 PM   #12
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You can not turn the unit far enough that the roller actually comes out of "what you call a detent" on the spring bar. When it does partially come up out of the bottom of the detent, there is a moment generated by this action that tries to drive the configuration back to the bottom of the detent. You need to draw a free body diagram of the trailer at the cam follower to see how it happens. You also need to draw a vertical diagram showing the sum of the moments about the trailer ball. There is also quite a bit of friction generated at the cam since it is not supposed to be lubricated and that also helps to dampen the sway moment.
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Old 11-10-2007, 05:37 PM   #13
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I see.

With the Equal-I-Zer, the pivot point attachments for the spring bars are about 6" apart, so when you make a sharp turn, the spring bars are translating in and out several inches against the L-brackets.

But with the Reese, the pivot point attachments are really close together on the hitch head, so that when you make a turn, there is only a fraction of the in/out movement back by the cams. The Gold links hold the cam in rigid place, and the preload cranked in by the chains holds the bars against the cams. So since the bars are only moving in and out a little bit, they ride the cam lobe but don't pop off because they're not translating enough. Hence: Self centering. And when you're in the parking lot, they just pop out.

Well, that actually is pretty slick. Maybe I should have stayed with it. But I spent over $600 on the big 14K Eq and it's working fine so I'll keep what I've got. But you Reese guys, I certainly won't bash you.

I still say I need to go into the machine shop and make one similar to the Hensley where it projects the turn center 4' forward, but cheaper and easier to hitch up. Sell 'em for $800 and I could sell all I could make

Take care
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Old 11-10-2007, 06:35 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimGolden
[IMG]file:///C:/DOCUME%7E1/JIMGOL%7E1/LOCALS%7E1/Temp/moz-screenshot-1.jpg[/IMG]Guys,

I used to use a Dual Cam when I'd borrow my dad's old camper. It did work fine. But in studying the picture, I'm not sure that I understand how it prevents sway. It looks like when you try to make a turn, the spring bar must pop out of it's detent. So when you're going straight, is the system pretty much just locked rigid, at least side to side? When you make a shallow turn, does the thing just flex enough to allow you to do it without popping the bar out of the detent?

I realize the Eq works off just straight friction. But I'm not seeing how this works at all. The gold colored arms that locate the cam fore and aft isn't going to move at all fore and aft. It could only move up and down, and that is determined by the links in the chains. So when you make a turn, the spring bars need to pull in or out depending upon which side they're on. So it looks like if you turn at all, it has to pop out of the cam lock. So is it simply that you're locked rigid when going straight and you pop it out of the cam in a turn? Could somebody explain this?

Thanks,
Jim.

The Reese dual cam or straightline hitch is nothing more than a cam and saddle.

The idea is to have the torsion bars bend at least one inch or more. The more, the better up to almost 4 inches.

Assuming a correct setup and adjustment, the minimum torsion is when the rig is in a straight line.

As you turn, one bar slides forward partly up on the cam, and the other bar slides rearward on it's cam.

Because of the different angle at the end of the bars, as the movement up on the saddle continues, the torsion of each bar unequally increases.

The greater the turn, the greater unequal increase in torsion occurs.

That is why, the Reese dual cam or straightline, is said to have a brain, because the torsion, in turns becomes greater, and becomes minimum when the rig is in a straight line.

As a result of the unequal changes in torsion when the rig moves away from a straight line, it constantly seeks minimum torsion, which is getting you back into a straight line.

When the rating is correct for the rig, and it's proper installed and adjusted, you can actually make a turn of 25 to 30 degrees, and sometimes more, take your hands off the steering wheel, and the rig will return to a straight line.

Unless you have a tow vehicle that is super heavy duty, if you make a turn and stop, the tow vehicle is now tilted to one side, again because of the unequal increase in torsion when in a turn as opposed to a straight line.

It really has no choice to help you, simply because the torsion bars want to reach a minimum stress level.

Any friction type sway control, has no brain as it exerts as much friction going into a turn as it does returning to a straight line.

Also, in rainy weather, the adjustment of the amount of friction should be reduced because of the slick pavement. If not, it can keep you locked in a position when you may not want to be.

Not so with a Reese dual cam. Rain, snow, any moisture, cannot alter the changes in torsion.

Andy
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