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Old 07-13-2011, 08:46 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gringo
These truck scales we all need to visit, are they commercial concerns? State supplied for free?

Just curious. Does it cost anything to weigh the trailer and tow vehicle at truck scales?
Loves, Pilot, and others have them and charge about 10$ for the first time. Then if you un hook or go over for another configuration it 's another buck or two. Just pull up on the scale and talk to them on the speaker when they talk to you.
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Old 07-13-2011, 08:55 AM   #16
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Also, just as a point of etiquette, at the CAT (truck scales) the trucks have priority over us since they are trying to make a living and have to get in and out.

When I weighed our trailer, I think I made 4 or 5 passes through the scales. The first weigh was $12 and each additional was $1 (or maybe $2). After each trip through the scale, I made adjustments to the ProPride jacks to move more weight forward on the truck. After I was done, I sat down and looked at what looked like the best combination. My experience is posted in the ProPride Users thread, but eh short answer is that for my trailer, truck, and loading combination; 6 1/2" of vertical travel on the jacks works best.
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Old 07-13-2011, 09:24 AM   #17
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As everyone here has posted... it is a weight distribution issue. Most customers do not jack the weight distribution jacks high enough to distribute enough weight to the front axle. This will give you the porpoising. The nice thing about a jack system is you can fine tune it for the specifics at any given time. More load with more tongue weight - jack them up more. Less load with less tongue weight - not as much. If you get on a road that is giving you problems you can get out and fine tune the jacks rather easily.

The scale trip will give you the baseline and you can adjust, as needed, from there.

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Old 07-13-2011, 11:55 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aviator View Post
Also, just as a point of etiquette, at the CAT (truck scales) the trucks have priority over us since they are trying to make a living and have to get in and out.
I see. So, if I am making a living from my trailer do I also get priority?

I've never entirely understood why truckers should get special privileges given that travel is a vital component of many people's employment. Like truckers, many of us do not get paid for time spent waiting for scales, restaurants, and so on.
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Old 07-13-2011, 12:03 PM   #19
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I'm not running one of these hitches, but have found that adjusting the Ride-Rite air lifts I added to the truck allows me to tune things so we get a smooth ride w/o porpoising, even over bad concrete roads. My guess is that as we typically tow at about 60 mph; the air springs let us change the resonant frequency of the truck far enough away from the 60 mph/length-of-concrete-slab to escape most of this.

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Old 07-13-2011, 12:05 PM   #20
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Quote:
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I've never entirely understood why truckers should get special privileges given that travel is a vital component of many people's employment. Like truckers, many of us do not get paid for time spent waiting for scales, restaurants, and so on.
Likely because the truckers are frequent customers. If you weigh your rig before every trip at the same scale, I'm sure you'll get the same kinds of attention as the truckers.

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Old 07-13-2011, 12:06 PM   #21
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The place I'm near charges $10 per weighing.. could get pricy to weigh all my axles, but it's worth it to get an accurate tongue weight. By the way, really appreciate all the tips and opinions given!!
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Old 07-13-2011, 12:24 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by barts View Post
I'm not running one of these hitches, but have found that adjusting the Ride-Rite air lifts I added to the truck allows me to tune things so we get a smooth ride w/o porpoising, even over bad concrete roads. My guess is that as we typically tow at about 60 mph; the air springs let us change the resonant frequency of the truck far enough away from the 60 mph/length-of-concrete-slab to escape most of this.

- Bart
I also think resonant frequency is a big part of this. Spring rates, weight distribution springs, shocks, wheelbase, frame flex etc.

I never tried air lifts on my last tow vehicle, but did numerous adjustments on hitch and installed Bilstein shocks without completely solving the problem. It would really get going at about 55, almost to the point of being dangerous. I had to speed up to 62 to smooth it out. Yes I think something which would change the resonant frequency is the key. In my case a new tow vehicle solved the problem entirely. The wheelbase is about the same, maybe overhang is a bit different. Spring rates and shocks are different of course. But it has no tendency to porpoise at all, on the same roads, with the same hitch adjustment.

So my thought is the same. If you exhaust the hitch adjustment as a cure, try something to alter the spring rates.
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Old 07-13-2011, 12:37 PM   #23
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I rented a new F-350 crew cab and towed our basically empty 27 about three or four hundred miles, using only the Reese type receiver hitch on the pickup truck. I had read about porpoising, and sway, and was anticipating them, and neither ever happened. There was plenty of two lane road, with railroad crossings, etc. and maybe fifty miles of interstate with 18 wheelers flying by, overtaking me by at least 75 or 80 mph to my 65. It really was rock solid.

I am now looking at leasing the truck again, for a longer period, and loading a few more goodies into the trailer. Should I be concerned about not having the weight distributing hitch? The truck and trailer frame were just about dead level without any mods at all, and it towed great.

Why?
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Old 07-13-2011, 01:38 PM   #24
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Payload and towing capacity are not the same thing (in a manner of speaking). The static measurements are to allay dynamic problems; a 500# TW can become 10,000# under adverse circumstances for a given combination.

The point to a WDH is to reduce yaw. The re-distribution of the TW to the vehicle and to the trailer axles lessens adverse TV reactions when the TT starts to move away from the line of travel either side-to-side or up-down or, worse, a combination.

The owners manual will tell you it is a requirement. Those who do without aren't the most intelligent of the species.
It's cheap, easy to set up and maintain.
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Old 07-13-2011, 02:19 PM   #25
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Well, I checked. The owners manual that came with this 2011 International recommends a hitch with built-in sway control, ( page C-12) but it certainly doesn't tell me that it's a requirement.
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Old 07-13-2011, 02:54 PM   #26
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Weight distributing hitches are required above a certain tongue weight which depends on the vehicle. We don't use one w/ our 71 Tradewind and 4x4 crewcab F250 as the point for needing that is 750 lbs of tongue weight; we run about 500 w/ this trailer.

The ride rite air assists allow me to have completely normal ride height, and we're well within the axle load limits.

Some people feel that WD hitches are required for all trailers; OTOH most boaters don't use them. I would certainly use one if I used a light duty vehicle to pull this trailer... but the rig tows beautifully as it stands. We're running 30 psi in the ride-rites (fair amount of tools in the truck on this trip); and since the truck then returns to unladen height the ride is quite smooth; it's much easier on the trailer this way. Note also that w/ the long wheelbase vehicles, shifting significant amount of weight onto the front wheels takes a lot of tension in the WD setup.

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Old 07-13-2011, 03:10 PM   #27
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Silverman:

You might want to check and see if there is a CAT scale near you. You can use their online locator to find them because I think their universal charge is $10 for first weigh and then either free for reweighs up to a certain number or a much smaller fee for each reweigh during the same time span. I could be wrong but that was the impression I got.
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Old 07-13-2011, 03:24 PM   #28
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Thanks! I'm definitely going to do that, plus I just ordered the Sherline tongue weight scale, just to have on hand. Cheapest was propride, which has it for $119.
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