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Old 11-20-2012, 04:39 PM   #981
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HowieE and Michael,
If we could find someone with sets of those portable electronic scales, we could have a grand time at the Canopener weighing TV's and trailer combinations just for the fun of it. We would need 6 scales for Michael's Bambi, 8 scales for my 29 Excella, and 10 for your monster 34. Shoot we could even weight Greg's 30 with the PP and other folks that wanted to. Isn't REDNAX doing some trucking stuff? I wonder if he could get a hold of some and bring them. Maybe Sean has some and could come. Everybody could get dialed in or give up and get another hitch.
We spend way to much time there farting around and telling lies there. It might keep us out of trouble. Naw, probably not.
I did look to see if CAT scales were close by but the nearest I found was out on I-10. Ain't going that far.
I'll bring a jack...and Jack and Coke.
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Old 11-20-2012, 05:29 PM   #982
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Bumblebee?

There is no mystery in the weight distribution method of the Andersen, it simply pulls back on the bottom of the hitch ball shaft which shortens the attachment length of the chains to the frame brackets. The bottom of a triangle; shorten the bottom leg and the upper two legs will be forced up. The urethane bushing is added as a shock absorber to take up roadway undulations.

To say it cannot transfer weight is to say this simple geometry is wrong, head in the sand thinking. An advantage of this application of weight distribution is the elimination of the w.d. spring bars which tend to amplify and repeat roadway undulations. There's some genius here.

The revolutionary part of the Andersen hitch is the way friction is applied where the ball shaft sits in the ball mount. Extremely effective, and a heavier tongue weight automatically receives additional friction. There's some genius here as well.

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Old 11-20-2012, 05:30 PM   #983
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Joe

I would suggest that we could weigh the rigs with one scale and the other tires supported on blocks the same thickness as the scales. But I am sure someone would question the accuracy of the thickness and or moisture content of the blocks. You know our results might be held to the same scientific standards that determined that the bumble bee can't fly and there for not worth the time and trouble.

Then again the standards of those that say the Andersen can't work may be as dated as the myth about the Bumble bees. The concluding paragraph from the above noted article about them.

"The old myth that ‘bumblebees shouldn’t be able to fly’ was based on calculations using the aerodynamic theory of 1918-19, just 15 years after the Wright brothers made the first powered flight. These early theories suggested that bumblebee wings were too small to create sufficient lift but since then scientists have made huge advances in understanding aerodynamics and how different kinds of airflow can generate lift."

Could it be that Andersen is being judged by equally outdated science.

After some thought I would rather just continue the Can Opener tradition of sitting around sucking sauce and telling lies. Don't want anything around that could compromise the extent of the lies.
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Old 11-20-2012, 05:34 PM   #984
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bumble bee, heck, i see it as the Stealth fighter, nothing like it out there. the rest of the hitches are good but fall in the category of the B50 fighters. Propeller types, heavy and complicated work-horses. The Andersen tho...wow..Anti sway and Anti BOUNCE...light. It distributes weight differently than the B50's, trailer level minimal tension.

There's still a bit of a free market there I think, the Andersen once tried will win you over.
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Old 11-20-2012, 06:30 PM   #985
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Andersen Install pics, Flying Cloud gas line problem

Just installed the Andersen WD hitch on my 2010 19-ft. Flying Cloud (to a VW Touareg); Seems to have gone well, but if you're thinking about doing this, you'll discover that Airstream runs a propane line on the bottom of the right frame arm, exactly where the the 3-inch frame bracket is supposed to bolt. The bracket bolt won't work there, unless you cut the propane line clips, pull the line (carefully) down and out of the way, so that the bottom bolt of the Andersen frame bracket will fit. It worked well, thanks to Paul at PTO auto who is really good with welding. Because the 3-inch airstream frames are open C-frames, you must weld the frame bracket in place, a process very clearly shown in the Andersen manual. They just won't hold if you only use one set screw.
Here's how my installation looks. First picture is the left side, second right side (with the propane line), third the overall Anderson install. In the first two pictures, you can see the welds, which have been painted over in black.





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Old 11-20-2012, 06:32 PM   #986
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I think you're putting too much thought into this. They are a standard industry item and should be no problem to get.

Beware they also make a 9 wire cable which is thicker and may not fit if you're passing it through any holes in frame members.

Good luck with your sourcing.
You're probably right. I just have to do it. And I see you are Air Force, also, so I have to trust your judgement. I was in Avionics, active and reserve, also retired. Diving into my wiring reminded me of a few all-nighters, chasing wiring diagrams in various aircraft, long ago. Wish I still had all that equipment at my fingertips!
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Old 11-20-2012, 06:37 PM   #987
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Just installed the Andersen WB hitch on my 2010 19-ft. Flying Cloud (to a VW Touareg); Seems to have gone well, but if you're thinking about doing this, you'll discover that Airstream runs a propane line on the bottom of the right frame arm, exactly where the the 3-inch frame bracket is supposed to bolt. The bracket bolt won't work there, unless you cut the propane line clips, pull the line (carefully) down and out of the way, so that the bottom bolt of the Andersen frame bracket will fit. It worked well, thanks to Paul at PTO auto who is really good with welding. Because the 3-inch airstream frames are open C-frames, you must weld the frame bracket in place, a process very clearly shown in the Andersen manual. They just won't hold if you only use one set screw.
Here's how my installation looks. First picture is the left side, second right side (with the propane line), third the overall Anderson install. In the first two pictures, you can see the welds, which have been painted over in black.
I had that same issue on my 4" closed frame. It was a simple matter to pull off a fastener and pull the gas line down so I could put in the bolt.
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Old 11-20-2012, 06:44 PM   #988
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I know what you mean Steve. I was Army active duty and Vietnam, Air Force later on and retired from reserve duty. Great times there. On my older trailer the wiring was outside of the frame. I replaced it by screwing a junction box to the inner frame rail and terminating the coach end of the wire in the box. I then ran my cable from there to the truck plug. Easy to do and all the stuff is available at the same trailer supply source. The wire may have been inside the frame from the factory but by the time I got it the wire was outside so that's how I ran it.

I also had the propane line issue. Mine was crushed by someone putting a jack under the frame rail. I cut back a few inches and had a new flexible line made a bit longer to compensate for it. That gave me enough flexibility to mount the Anderson bracket.
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Old 11-20-2012, 08:57 PM   #989
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The Andersen turns as quiet and smoothly as the coupler on a ball by itself, whether going ahead or backing up.

doug k
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:49 PM   #990
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Andrew T, in post 684 of this thread you show your set up with the Andersen hitch with the car 3.25" up in the front and 1/2" down at the rear. That's a lot of differential and it is clear in the photo. What is not clear on the photo is how the trailer appears to be dead level, or very close. That combination of down-in-the-rear attitude of the car and level of trailer is not possible if the hitch is set up correctly.

In an earlier post you had stated the Andersen could not transfer weight because it would just stretch the chains. That has led to great skepticism on this thread of the Andersen hitch regarding weight transfer. You have come back to present another case of weight transfer that has little to do with the Andersen hitch on the premise the Andersen cannot transfer weight.

Could we first return to your earlier post and clear that up? Would you explain the photo?

doug k


Hi Doug

It is very easy to have a combination where the tow vehicle has settled too far at the rear and the trailer still sits level. It is just a function of the ball height adjustment. In other words you can have the same weight transfer no matter where you adjust the ball height.

When we were setting up the Anderson and had found the max weight distribution we could acheive we raised the ball height so the trailer would be level for the test drive.

I have always felt that a combination should be very stable and easy to control without sway control. The sway controls are cheap insurance. The anderson as it currently is made is the reverse of that. It is a very powerful sway control but it would not be stable with out that.

My other concern is redundancy. On a conventional hitch you can break a torsion bar but if you do you still have another and your sway controls. If you break a sway bar you still have another one and weight distribution. On the Anderson if you break one of the chains you loose both sway control and weight distribution at the same instant. This could be a real "E" ticket ride.

I will be the first to say that I think there are some good features on the Anderson and I think the design is very creative but don't think it is there yet for many combinations. I would be extremely worried if you tried to tow in snow with one and somewhat concerned about a greasy wet road.

I recently picked up an F150 to demo fifth wheels but it does have a hitch on it so I will try the Anderson with it again and take some weights with both systems.

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Old 11-20-2012, 10:17 PM   #991
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Sean

Have ANY of the other hitch manufactures ever subjected themselves to an independent testing lab?

Not sure this is a topic that would interest Consumers Report or Underwriters Lab. The numbers just are not there.

Yes we have heard from an individual that has had a reputation for knowledge in the field of WD hitches. I for one have frequently commented on his reputation but he lost my support when he presented a poorly supported report on the Andersen. I suspect his inventory influenced his comment as I suspect is you situation.

Now as for SWAY. Generally some event or outside force has to induce sway to a rig. Without a continued application of this force or the miss application of corrective effort by the drive sway would ring out on its own. However the average individual is not will to ride out this natural reduction and thus anti sway devices have been introduced and marketed.

Historical they have approached this problem in several ways. Rigiditize the two components, friction between 2 plates or application of cams. While the first has an accepted history of effectiveness it has several cost and operational problems. The friction between 2 plates is not even worth commenting on. The application of cams has a significant problem in that the frictional force used to dampen the sway only works against half of the motion, as the bars climb off the cam. The cams returning to the neutral position actually act as an accelerator.

The Andersen applies friction in both direction of the sway. In the absence of a continued application that caused the initial displacement being applied in sync with the returning motion sway will not result. This initial dampening take place before the driver has a chance to amplify the problem.
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Old 11-20-2012, 10:32 PM   #992
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Quote:
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Sean

Have ANY of the other hitch manufactures ever subjected themselves to an independent testing lab?
NO, I can't get even one of them to contribute to the cost. Why not?


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Not sure this is a topic that would interest Consumers Report or Underwriters Lab. The numbers just are not there.
That's true. They will not do it on their own.

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Yes we have heard from an individual that has had a reputation for knowledge in the field of WD hitches. I for one have frequently commented on his reputation but he lost my support when he presented a poorly supported report on the Andersen. I suspect his inventory influenced his comment as I suspect is you situation.
Which is EXACTLY the reason that every hitch company should contribute to the cost of INDEPENDENT testing.

No matter what anyone says about their own testing there will always be individuals who believe that the world has no one with any character and will report something to benefit themselves. It's the world we live in now. It's sad really.

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Now as for SWAY. Generally some event or outside force has to induce sway to a rig. Without a continued application of this force or the miss application of corrective effort by the drive sway would ring out on its own. However the average individual is not will to ride out this natural reduction and thus anti sway devices have been introduced and marketed.
Agreed. 5th wheels have been produced and marketed for the same reason.

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Originally Posted by HowieE View Post
Historical they have approached this problem in several ways. Rigiditize the two components, friction between 2 plates or application of cams. While the first has an accepted history of effectiveness it has several cost and operational problems. The friction between 2 plates is not even worth commenting on. The application of cams has a significant problem in that the frictional force used to dampen the sway only works against half of the motion, as the bars climb off the cam. The cams returning to the neutral position actually act as an accelerator.

The Andersen applies friction in both direction of the sway. In the absence of a continued application that caused the initial displacement being applied in sync with the returning motion sway will not result. This initial dampening take place before the driver has a chance to amplify the problem.
So if the friction force is not greater than the sway force it will sway? And the same force has to be applied in the reverse direction to get the trailer back to the centerline?

Let's be clear... we are talking about the application and applied direction of friction. A sway bar uses friction between two materials to damp the pivoting force. An Anderson uses friction between two materials, applied in a different direction, to damp the pivoting force. Correct?
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Old 11-20-2012, 10:57 PM   #993
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Andrew T, I remain a skeptic of your Andersen test because I have set up a reg wheelbase and a short wheelbase truck with the hitch and it was easy, none of the difficulty you describe. Yes the hitch ball height does determine whether the trailer is level when the truck is returned to correct attitude, but the explanation makes me wonder what's really cooking here.

As for sway control it is indeed good. The redundancy has some reasoning worth considering, but a broken spring bar sounds like it may be a "D" ticket ride, but perhaps a ride nonetheless. I don't know how often these broken chains would happen, but when they do they do. Kind of like getting hit by lightening. Maybe the results not as disastrous. If we want redundancy, most late model tow vehicles have anti-skid brakes, auto stabilization, and electronic sway control which may be more useful than half a broken hitch.

I assume your concern of towing on snow or wet greasy roads is a followup to the premise that it cannot transfer weight to the steering axle. I'm not going to the trouble of getting and posting weight measurements because, as an everyday chump no one would believe it anyway, if they didn't want to for one reason or another.

My truck and trailer did set up without difficulty and it works nicely after 3700 miles in wind, rain (we avoid it when possible), on lousy roads, and during an emergency braking/lane change when someone unknowingly tried to quickly run me off the road.

I will continue to follow your posts and educational writings with great interest and enthusiasm, but this particular test seems to have a fly in the soup.

doug k
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Old 11-20-2012, 11:38 PM   #994
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Sean,Andy,Doug, Mike, Howie and etc.; I think you are all right. I don't think we will come to any conclusion as to the best hitch as there are too many variables. There is the tow vehicle, 1/2,3/4 or 1 ton; there is the wheel base, brakes, tires/wheels. There is the brand of the TV, distance from the rear axel to the ball and on and on. Than there is the trailer, what is the size, brand and etc.
I also think it is interesting that there has been NO reply from Anderson, Equlizer Reese etc.
I had/have a Equlizer, I now have a Anderson; sorry Sean, but I would have bought a Pro Pride except $$$$. I had 4 different dealers set-up the Equlizer but had sway all the time. There was wind, semi's and road that all played a part. Why 4 dealers, traded TV and TT. All I can say is that I like the performance and installation of the Anderson vs the Equlizer.
Well, that is my view on the subject. Good towing to all; and all a good tow.
mike
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