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Old 10-24-2003, 07:14 PM   #1
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Reese vs. Equal-i-zer

I know that this conversation has come up a lot before, but I need help deciding between a Reese Trunnion Style Weight Distributing Hitch with a Dual Cam Sway Control versus the Equal-i-zer.

From what I am being told by the dealer, they are both good systems, but the Reese is better. The dealer wants $100 more to go with the Reese set up versus the Equal-i-zer.

He has told me that the Equal-izer is easier to hook up, but in the long run, I will be a lot more happy with the Reese system.

What are your thoughts? Thanks in advance.
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Old 10-24-2003, 07:42 PM   #2
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Price

One thing I should have mentioned, is that the Reese System will run about $750 verse the Equal-i-zer system which is $650.
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Old 10-24-2003, 07:56 PM   #3
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Joshua,

We use the Equalizer brand hitch on our Discovery Rover and '67 Globetrotter 20ft. It performs very well. So well that, back in JUne when we went to retrieve the trailer from Iowa, I drove it back home to Denver in one sitting(14 hours at 65 moh) Rover was comfortable to drive and the airstream tracked right behind with little non-sense.
After putting an electric hitch jack on the Globetrotter, we raise it up, slip the bars in place, and we're on our way.
There's is no need to use a bar to flip the chain up to tighten it like the dual cam..
We have used both, its just our local Aristream technician at Windish RV in Denver recommended the Equalizer brand. He uses one to tow his 34 ft tri-axle.
Besides, with the 600 lbs bar set-up, the price was right, $495.00
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Old 10-24-2003, 08:51 PM   #4
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Joshua,

If you go in to search and look at the top ten , there are some old but, very good discussions on your question. I would rather read the old threads because you can get a broader group of opinions whereas now, you will only get those folks that are on line today or tomorrow, etc.

I have the Equalizer on a 29' trailer and it works just fine for me. However, there are old threads on here that get into a discussion of how much impact the tow vehicle and tires have vs. hitch alone.

There are a few folks on here that have used both and can give you a better opinion.
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Old 10-24-2003, 10:25 PM   #5
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Thanks for the input so far. I have checked out some of the old threads and have to admit that I'm still not sure which is the best way to go.

One thing I forgot to list before, was that the $650 and $750 quotes includes a Prodigy Brake Controller.

I will look forward to reading more comments.
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Old 10-25-2003, 01:01 AM   #6
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I went with the Equal-i-zer which was $380 with free shipping, and the Prodigy cost me $109 also with free shipping.
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Old 10-25-2003, 11:44 AM   #7
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I wish I could get someone who has used both systems to offer some advice. I get the feeling that either way, you can't go wrong.
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Old 10-25-2003, 11:52 AM   #8
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Joshua,

I appreciate your dilema. Quite honestly even though I have been a happy Reese dual-cam owner I have seriously thought of going the Equal-i-zer route since my dealer sells a lot of them.

Bottom line for me I will stick to the Reese. One of the overriding factors is that I know that I will carry these components with me for years and potentially other trailers. Some of my Reese hitch components are approaching 22 years old. While nothing has failed at this point I felt it is time to start over and go new. With the track record Reese has both from company history and performance, the extra $$ spent over the Equal-i-zer are worth my peace of mind. That's really what you are buying.

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Old 10-25-2003, 03:32 PM   #9
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What you get with Reese Dual Cam is a brand and an add-on to common load leveling hitches.

The Equal-i-zer is an integrated system from a company that has been around 20 years rather than 40 (more or less) and is less well known.

The DC is a more complex mechanism, a bit more difficult to adjust (not only the hitch mechanics but also the DC mechanism), and a bit more restricted in its range of motion than the EQ.

Both provide equivalent handling improvements over brake bar systemts but suffer from behind bumper pivot points tending to cause understeer.

Neither will hide the effects of poor handling tires, improper tire inflation, improper vehicle and truck loading, and similar handling problems sources like a Pullrite or Hensley will.

As an add-on the DC adds about $200 to an EAZ lift or reese load leveling hitch. The EQ is a complete hitch and can be had for about $400 total, The Pullrite is about $2,000 and the Hensley about $3,000
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Old 10-25-2003, 07:39 PM   #10
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The Dual-Cam adds sway control to a conventional hitch.

The Equal-I-Zer uses the spring bars as brake bars just like a brake bar friction sway control if you wanna call that "an integrated system."

The Dual-Cam is more complex because it allows independent tension adjustment of the weight distribution and sway control. The Equal-I-Zer resistance to sway is related to the weight-distribution tension and cannot be independently adjusted. As we've seen in the Winter Towing thread, there's times when you want less sway control, but still need your weight distribution.

How does a hitch that uses the spring bars as brake bars provide any improvement over a conventional hitch with dual brake bars, when it's functionally the same thing?

Friction hitches, including the Equal-I-Zer, resist the tow vehicle OR trailer putting an angle in the rig OR taking it out. The difference is that while the Dual-Cam also resists the tow vehicle or trailer putting an angle in the rig, it HELPS it take that angle out and straighten the rig. Where sway is concerned, this may be a good thing, but when you WANT an angle in the rig, it isn't.

Resisting change in an angle between the tow vehicle and trailer (even when that angle is zero) causes understeer much more significantly that the drag of the trailer on a behind the bumper hitch resists the ball going sideways. Especially when that drag disappears when you lift the throttle before entering a turn or curve, which, if anything, would cause oversteer on a behind the bumper pivot rig.

So since the Hensley or Pullrite (or fifth-wheel, including 18-wheelers) don't let poor handling tires, improper tire inflation, improper vehicle and truck loading, and similar handling problems yaw the tow vehicle, like a DC or EQ HAS to do at least some degree if you don't want binding in turns, we're now asserting that they "hide" problems? Bash those Hensleys and Pullrites any way you can, Bryan, even if you have to stretch like this!

Those of us who invest so much in the Hensley or Pullrite, are also more likely to invest the time and effort to take care of the simplier things like tire inspection and pressure (not saying that some conventional hitch owners aren't as attentive). I consider it a GOOD thing that if a tire goes flat, I'll have to see it in the mirrors to notice a difference. If you had any experience with these things you speak of, you'd know you'll also see the results of improper loading in the mirrors, but again, won't feel the tow vehicle yawing as a result. I also consider THAT a GOOD thing.
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Old 10-25-2003, 08:33 PM   #11
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Quote:
The Equal-I-Zer uses the spring bars as brake bars just like a brake bar friction sway control if you wanna call that "an integrated system."
this isn't quite accurate.

The EQ uses a bolt tensioned spring bar receiver as its main anti-rotation control. The spring bars do not serve as a brake bar but only convey motion and position. Unlike the DC, the EQ does not depend upon the spring bar loading as a primary factor in determining its resistance to pivoting at the ball.

The reason that the EQ can properly called an integrated system (without a sneer) is that it does not depend upon add-on parts like the DC or the friction bar systems but rather has both load leveling and anti-sway built in as an integral part of the hitch.

What is interesting (to me, at least) is that the EQ and DC are perceived to provide equivalent handling improvements over a friction bar. This sets up a contrast to the claims about the DC operating mechanism benefits and lends to some insight about the understanding many have of sway problems and how it is best controlled.
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Old 10-25-2003, 08:44 PM   #12
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we're now asserting that they "hide" problems? Bash those Hensleys and Pullrites any way you can, Bryan, even if you have to stretch like this
maybe a bit less sneer and a bit more thought might lend some insight?

When there is a multi factored situation, a predominant factor can 'hide' the influence of the others.

The handling improvements of the Pullrite and Hensley demonstrate that pivot point is a predominant factor. This is one possible reason why Hensley advertises its hitch as being a solution for problems caused by less dominant factors such as those I mentioned that prompted your remark.

The comment about bashing is also a misperception and not based on any proper reading of my posts. This kind of misperception is, to me, an indicator of an improper bias that creates problems.
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