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Old 06-15-2013, 01:07 PM   #1947
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Howie - that link you suggest...is that a standard item at a hardware store? Does it have to have a certain rating? That is a good option.

Doug - I am going to try one more hitching approach before I decide what to do about the hitch. Andersen has suggested a different way to couple the trailer and tow vehicle to see if the latch stays put. I have already laid the groundwork of trying to get a refund....not sure if they will honor it. If not, I will look to either change the couple or the hitch entirely. I truly want this system to work as it is lightweight and easy to use...when working properly.
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Old 06-15-2013, 01:12 PM   #1948
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star', good plan. That's the route I took before giving up on it.

doug k
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Old 06-15-2013, 01:27 PM   #1949
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Hitch damages???

Damages to an Airstream shell and/or chassis, can be related to several things.

Excessive rated hitch bars, hitch bars that have very little resillence, excessive rated tow vehicles, unbalanced running gear, bad axles, bad roads.

The damage can be from any one of those issues or a combination of them.

An Airstream "MUST" always have a soft, smooth ride.

Anything that contributes to defeating that ride, "WILL" in time, cause damages.

I have personally witnessed that for over 47 years, and it continues because some owners insist on "their way or NO way".

But, repair shops love it, because it brings in a lot of profitable work.

History repeats itself, and those that continue to "bulldog" the trailer, will continue to see damages, which for most part, CAN be avoided.

Andy
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Old 06-15-2013, 02:37 PM   #1950
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Originally Posted by HowieE View Post
If you weld, and I don't suggest it, Behind the Top of the bracket is where the greatest force will occur. The Chains pull forward at the bottom and that force will pivot against the set screw causing the top to want to move rearward.
First -- Bruce said, " I don't intend to even install the the set screws, but just rely on spot welding to prevent any slippage."
That means there will be no set screw to pivot around.

Second -- Bruce also said, "With the brackets installed and with tension on the urethane springs, the upper and lower bolts compress against the frame, with the chain tube pointing right at the chain plate."
That means his installation relies on interaction between bolt and frame to provide resistance against rotating.

If the chain tension is 1000#, the bottom bolt, plus clamping friction, must push rearward against the bracket with a force of about 1250#.
The top bolt, plus clamping friction, must push forward against the bracket with a force of about 250#.

Since the load on the bottom bolt will be about five times the load on the top bolt, the weld should be placed as close as practical to the bottom bolt

The reason for placing the weld at the leading edge of the bracket is due to the yaw-axis torque imposed on the bracket as a result of the chain not being parallel to the A-frame.
The torque will cause the leading edge of the bracket to tend to twist away from the A-frame.
Having the weld on the leading edge will prevent the edge of the bracket from moving away from the frame.

IMO, Craig got it right when he placed his weld "on the lower front of the bracket".
Andersen's manual, on page 7 of 13, also shows a weld on the bottom, but theirs is on the back side of the bracket.

Ron
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Old 06-15-2013, 04:13 PM   #1951
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Originally Posted by star kitty View Post
Howie - that link you suggest...is that a standard item at a hardware store? Does it have to have a certain rating? That is a good option.
Yes almost any Tractor Supply or Trailer Supply, Not RV Supply, will have them and the rating will be enough for this use. If I remember right they were about 4.00 each and you can install them by hand. After you install them if you have an issue post that issue and we will work it out. There is no reason to consider returning this hitch. There are a couple here that did not get the free lunch and can't get over it.
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Old 06-15-2013, 04:15 PM   #1952
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This picture is from another user on another forum who just received their Andersen hitch, and it seem they have come out with a different type "brake material" for the ball mount.

Suppose they've been having more failures???? Suppose they will provide current users with the newer brake material sleeve???

I sense this thing is a work in progress and just maybe they didn't do quite the testing that they first indicated.

I am very interested in this different material Steve. Keep me posted if you find out more.
I have now towed 7000 miles using the Andersen and 6450 has been wonderful. Something happened my last 550 mile trip. The brake material appears to be coming out, there is now a squeal where it was quiet and in the high winds I could tell the sway control was not there as before.
I will call Andersen tomorrow and see what they say.
Joe
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Old 06-15-2013, 04:28 PM   #1953
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So there you go folks, yet another "issue" with the Andersen hitch.

Lets see if I have them all in order.

1. The coupler on your trailer may not withstand the forces applied by the Andersen so you may need to change it.

2. The chains wear into the square brackets and may fail as result.

3. The brackets may slip on your trailer's tongue and reduce weight distribution if not welded on.

4. If you have a large trailer with a heavy tongue weight, the Andersen my not be able to distribute the weight properly.

5. The anti-sway "brake" material may fail and need replacement prematurely.

Did I miss any "issues"? And, while this thread is only a year old, that's like brand new in the life of a weight distribution hitch design life.
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Old 06-15-2013, 04:37 PM   #1954
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Craiglud,

You have a relatively short wheelbase tow vehicle, and what most would call a "smaller" trailer with a somewhat lighter tongue weight.

Most would expect the Andersen to work well in your situation, but you really need to return all the unhitched weight to the front axle, especially with a short wheelbase tow vehicle.

What type of coupler does your trailer have?
I already have oversized, upgraded, tires that add extra weight and each one can carry 3,400#, each over the stock 2,400# tire. I have a winch in the front bumper that weighs 100#, I have sliders that probably weight 150# or so on either side under the door frame. I do not notice anything light in the front end with steering and I mostly camp in the forest with a lot of dirt road traveling. I don't want a setup that is too stiff and some of the WDH's specifically recommend disconnecting before going off road or don't recommend it at all.

I have a 113" wheelbase and my trailer is almost 26' and I would actually like to tow with a little less tongue weight than I currently have at ~720#. My coupler is not the one that is most common on the AS and I believe it is the Husky 87080.

I'm going to the scales to see how much adjustment I have left however with my current setup there is no way I am concerned about moving 150# back to the front axle on a vehicle that weighs in at 7k lbs loaded for travel. If it is that finicky then I would have to worry about where all of my four kids and wife sit in the six available seats . The seventh middle seat was removed in favor of a fridge that runs full time off a secondary battery, also installed in the front engine compartment.

I will post back with results though.
-Craig
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Old 06-15-2013, 05:08 PM   #1955
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If there is anyone out there that still may have a question about the benefits of a softer none porpoising ride that the Andersen give here is the results of a 100,000 mile plus use of the Reese system on the front of my trailer.
Howie, even if this damage is due to using the Reese hitch --
do you actually believe it is a fair, or even credible, comparison of Andersen versus Reese?

Prior to becoming an Andersen owner, you repeatedly posted about adjusting your WDH to cause both the front and rear of the TV to be lower than unhitched. And, you advised others to do the same.

Your recommendation for how to adjust the WDH would correspond to a Front Axle Load Restoration of roughly 150%.
OTOH, with your Andersen WDH, your scale weights indicated a FALR of about 40%.
So, it looks as though you were operating your Reese with almost four times as much load transfer as you are getting from the Andersen.

If we can agree that cumulative trailer damage should be approximately proportional to WDH load transfer multiplied by miles towed,
it would seem that 100,000 plus miles of towing with your over-adjusted Reese would cause about 40 times as much potential for damage as would towing 10,000 miles with the Andersen.

Perhaps you should wait until you have towed 400,000 miles with the Andersen before making damage-causing comparisons.

As someone recently stated: "We each have our reasons to post on this tread but we have an obligation not to do it in a manor that insults the intelligence of the readers."

Ron
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Old 06-15-2013, 05:16 PM   #1956
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Ron

I sure will get back to you at that time.
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Old 06-15-2013, 06:02 PM   #1957
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
So there you go folks, yet another "issue" with the Andersen hitch.

Lets see if I have them all in order.

1. The coupler on your trailer may not withstand the forces applied by the Andersen so you may need to change it.

2. The chains wear into the square brackets and may fail as result.

3. The brackets may slip on your trailer's tongue and reduce weight distribution if not welded on.

4. If you have a large trailer with a heavy tongue weight, the Andersen my not be able to distribute the weight properly.

5. The anti-sway "brake" material may fail and need replacement prematurely.

Did I miss any "issues"? And, while this thread is only a year old, that's like brand new in the life of a weight distribution hitch design life.
Steve,
I have worked thru points 1-3 and they are not an issue for me. As for point 4, my trailer weighs about 6800 lbs and tongue weight is 825. I can consistantly get back to within 60 to100 pounds of unloaded front axle weight. If I crank it down, the best I can get is with 30 lbs. I never got 100% with my HaHa and could not unless I went to heavier bars. I am happy with that at 100 and it tows very well. As for wear, it is going to happen. Ever seen a HaHa after a few years of towing? I can post pic's of my broke one and also the other worn parts if you want. Many elongated holes.
Your point 5 is a big deal. I can not fix that myself so I am looking to Andersen to get that right. I fully expect they will. If not, I'll take it off, find another hitch and let you know.
Joe
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Old 06-15-2013, 07:18 PM   #1958
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Slowmover

While we were waiting for you to post your scale tickets, requested post 1894 of this tread, I came across this.

Some quotes from one of your old posts.

Have enjoyed reading the information posted, and look forward to more as the rig hitching is sorted out. I could not get that last 200# back onto the Steer axle with the Hensley, so looking to see how your different truck and different trailer work out with adjustments on the PP. (In other words, is it possible to overload the Steer axle with the PP due to leverage; and then back it down? Or?)

From post #75
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f238...n-17984-6.html

Did you ever get the HAHA to do what you are asking the Andersen to do?

I believe you questioned my scale tickets that were within the margin of error for the scale, 20 lbs. 200 is a bit out of range isn't it?
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Old 06-16-2013, 07:03 PM   #1959
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Craig, your overall driving experience was similar to mine, but we had little experience with roadways that were slippery. I did have one near Chicago in the mist last fall, and my steering felt very light, I wrote it off as oil or something on the road, and pulled into a rest area for the night. It was probably insufficient weight distribution with my Andersen hitch.

Towing experts have advised us 50% weight transfer is not enough. You can play around with the Andersen to see what you can do, but it most probably won't be able to do it. Not enough leverage in the design.

Multiple issues with the Andersen caused me to return it for a refund.

doug k
Not true, 2012 Ford F-150 manual states "return to 50%". I think other manufacturers of pickup trucks state similar. Who are these towing experts?
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Old 06-16-2013, 07:25 PM   #1960
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Not true, 2012 Ford F-150 manual states "return to 50%". I think other manufacturers of pickup trucks state similar. Who are these towing experts?
Here's some who have done thousands for two generations

Can-Am RV Centre | Your Towing Experts

Sean at ProPride hitches recommended 1400# w.d. bars so we could get full weight transfer. He's a mechanical engineer who owns the hitch company.

Our 2012 Ram owners manual says nothing about 50% transfer is enough.

doug k
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