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Old 06-07-2012, 11:22 PM   #99
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M2HB, there is no real pivot point here. Only a force applied on a horizontal plane that distributes the weight.

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Old 06-07-2012, 11:39 PM   #100
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Originally Posted by REDNAX View Post
Looking forward to how an ANDERSEN WDH measures out on a certified scale for accurate weight distribution. Anecdote only carries so far.

No one has ever shown the workup for that band-aid called an AIRSAFE hitch . . a not unfair name short of what numbers would offer as demonstration; so an early line-by-line rig analysis would be much appreciated in the instance of this new hitch.

.
Maybe there isn't 5 weigh scale tickets, but as people have been using their suspension to fender measurements for decades, this is clearly indication that weight is being transferred... It is no more or less accurate than any other setup where someone goes by '3 links looks about right'...

As for the Airsafe... it's not a WD setup by itself, but a WD can be mounted to it... which makes for a hefty amount of metal hanging off the back. Having just returned from 1600km of Airsafe cushioned towing, all I can say is it isolates 90% of the hammering between the TV and trailer for me... it is a bit freaky to start out with, because the trailer bounces around quite a bit and it quite the sight in the mirror. It gives an excellent idea though of how much shock is being shared when you have a rigid connection between TV and trailer.

I don't use WD on mine... my weights are just about perfect without any transfer (<> 4500 trailer and <> 500 on the hitch)... I don't use sway control, and this last trip was in gusts to 80km/h on two-way highway with lots and lots of tractor/trailer traffic. Never budges.

Anyway - Airsafe is something you need to try, or observe, before writing it off as hocus-pocus... as it would see is necessary for the Andersen (or any other hitch other then the one a person owns it seems).
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Old 06-08-2012, 07:41 AM   #101
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With respect to the load on the hitch ball and coupler, I keep going back to Newton's third law, "To every action there is always an equal and opposite reaction: or the forces of two bodies on each other are always equal and are directed in opposite directions."

Based on this law of physics, and load that the chains of this Andersen hitch applies pulling the trailer "A" frame foward, must be counteracted by the ball and coupler joint pushing backward.

Only time in use will tell us if the couplers are built strong enough to withstand this load long term, and it is clear that the heavier the tongue weight of the trailer is, or the more weight that must be distributed foward, the more load that will be applied at the ball/coupler joint.
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Old 06-08-2012, 08:09 AM   #102
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Hard to imagine the "coupler load" at the rear of the coupler doesn't move to the front side of the coupler when the trailer is pulled ahead by the tow vehicle. Or are you suggesting the trailer is being pulled by the bushings and frame brackets?

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Old 06-08-2012, 08:17 AM   #103
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Hard to imagine the "coupler load" at the rear of the coupler doesn't move to the front side of the coupler when the trailer is pulled ahead by the tow vehicle. Or are you suggesting the trailer is being pulled by the bushings and frame brackets?

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Oh I'm sure both are doing some pulling when the trailer is being pulled down the road. My previous post really deals more with where the load of the weight distribution is applied in the system. However, if the trailer brakes are not adjusted properly, there is the WD load at the ball/coupler joint AND the stopping load.

I posted the explaination with Newton's law in hopes that more people could understand why the ball and coupler have the horizontal load applied to them when weight distribution is in play.

edit: After thinking about this for a while, as long as there is conderable amount of weight distribution adjusted into this hitch system, the chains are actually pulling the trailer, not the ball and coupler.
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Old 06-08-2012, 08:28 AM   #104
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If the tow vehicle pulling force is applied to the front of the coupler, why should we be concerned about wear at the rear of the coupler?

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Old 06-08-2012, 08:33 AM   #105
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If the tow vehicle pulling force is applied to the front of the coupler, why should we be concerned about wear at the rear of the coupler?

doug k
First, read my edit above.

The reason we should be concerned is the locking part of the coupler, which must sustain the weight distribution load, is the weakest part of most couplers used on travel trailers today.

At this time we really don't know what these loads are because the manufacturer has not published this data, if they know. However, Newton's law says it must be equal to the load put on the chains. With a good industrial quality hydraulic press, one could compress the urethane "springs" the same amount they are compressed in application, and read directly the pressure being applied to the coupler pawl.
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Old 06-08-2012, 08:35 AM   #106
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Problem is its not pulling the trailer back. That's not how it works. It's twisting the bottom of the hitch back just like a regular WD does. If it pulled right where the ball was it would pull it directly back but then wouldn't work would it. Sure there may be more pressure on the lock when you set it up but is gone when driving. If someone would think that a WD would keep the ball at the back of the coupler while driver, well I not sure what to say about that.
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Old 06-08-2012, 08:38 AM   #107
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I think it would be really great to get the manufacturer of the hitch, Andersen, together with the manufacturers of several couplers to do some exchanging of data and specifications to see just exactly what kind of longivity we can expect from this hitch/coupler system.
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Old 06-08-2012, 08:40 AM   #108
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Problem is its not pulling the trailer back. That's not how it works. It's twisting the bottom of the hitch back just like a regular WD does. If it pulled right where the ball was it would pull it directly back but then wouldn't work would it. Sure there may be more pressure on the lock when you set it up but is gone when driving. If someone would think that a WD would keep the ball at the back of the coupler while driver, well I not sure what to say about that.
Jason, not only is the load of the WD system at the back of the ball continusly, it will actually increase in use periodically when the tow vehicle goes thru dips in the road such as entering/exiting filling stations and such.
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Old 06-08-2012, 08:58 AM   #109
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?

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Old 06-08-2012, 09:01 AM   #110
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Doug me too ?

I wait for the call from Andersen to see what they say.
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Old 06-08-2012, 09:11 AM   #111
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The majority of the discussion so far has been an interesting academic one and has changed my original thoughts on the forces applied to the coupling. The picture below shows that in the Atwood coupling the pawl is over 1/4 in. thick at the bottom and come to rest directly on the inclined body of the coupling itself when locked. It is hard to imagine any force generated by the hitch, trailer, or emergency braking could crush that wedge of steel. An indication as to how tight that pawl is in the coupling when locked is the fact that if when hitching I have the slightest rearward relationship of the TV to the Trailer the pawl will not drop into position as indicated by the handle remaining up off the coupling or the locking hole too far forward to accept my D pin.

Now lets get into a deeper discussion. Andersen claims American Made however if you look closely at the clevis you will clearly see made in China. That in itself is not the issue. The issue is that in order to pass the end of the clevis through the chain some material had to be ground off. Just looking at the chain assembly as a whole I suspect it was made in China.

Andersen's comment when I questioned this was they buy from Pittsburgh. Not sure if that is a town in Pa. or and import company from China. But in any case that is the area of the hitch I have in question

You will see rotational markings in the top of my coupling but remember that coupling has been on the trailer for over a year.
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Old 06-08-2012, 09:27 AM   #112
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I don't think I want to look in mine!! it's 44 years old and I'm sure the trailer was towed without WD at some point. I towed it 50 miles home that way.

Problem is "Made in America" really means "Assembled in America" Look at John Deer Tractors. The only parts Really made in America is the Paint. And I bet that isn't anymore. I have a Japanese motor in mine.

I read some other Forums on this and there are people out there with over 3,000 miles on Andersen so far with no problems. I'm willing to bet most of the other WD have parts from China too. And just because it is made in the USA doesn't always mean it's better.
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