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Old 01-26-2013, 07:30 PM   #1275
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This is something I want ALL current user to be on the alert for. I mentioned about that there seamed to be a problem when I was hitching up with the cooling.

Today just after moving the rig less than a 1/2 mile I noticed the latch was up about 1/2 in. Even though I had Pin through the latch. Continued to the next campground and while unhitching the ball dropped out of the coupling even though the pin was still in place. After setting up I studied thing and found that a piece of metal had sheared off the front edge of the piece on the coupling that holds the latch down when pinned. This allows the ball to work the latch up to a position that completely compromises the coupling. This is a result of the fact that the Andersen places force rearward on the coupling pawl.

The amount of material sheared off is about 3/32 at best but enough to allow the latch to be pushed upwards. I have pictures of the latch in the raised position and the ball just having dropped out of the coupling

In the mean tone U ask all to keep an eye on the front edge of the standing piece on the coupling that holds the pin to the latch.

While this is clearly a failure of the Atwood coupling it is an issue that we user or Andersen will have to address, lest a rigs pups out of the coupling while on the road.

I am thinking of welding 2 flanges on either sides of the front of the latch and placing a pin across the latch directly over the latch while it is latched keeping the ball from working the pawl upward.

Please post any similar observations.
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Old 01-26-2013, 08:37 PM   #1276
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HowieE: Thanks for the heads up. I won't be using mine until April, but I sure will look for it then. I have not yet seen anything like it on either my old or my new coupler.
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Old 01-26-2013, 09:58 PM   #1277
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If this happens to your coupling you will get an indication in that you will not have to pull the latch forward past the stop in order to lift It

I should have realized there was a problem when that started
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Old 01-26-2013, 10:37 PM   #1278
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Sounds like another good reason to make sure those safety chains are properly hooked up.
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Old 01-26-2013, 11:00 PM   #1279
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When I hook-up, I make sure that the hitch/ball look like Howie's pix #1. I go one step further, I raise the jack one more time to make sure that the trailer is on the ball and latched to the point that I lift the truck. I know, one more step, but rather be safe than sorry. Another thing, I unbolt or bolt the chains rather than the wing piece when hooking or unhooking. I had the ball come of of the receiver once; scared the #^%* out of me.
Just a thought, when tightening the chains is there enough pressure on the hitch latch to cause premature ware?
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Old 01-26-2013, 11:03 PM   #1280
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oops; I do retract the jack before leaving
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Old 01-27-2013, 09:14 AM   #1281
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Airtandem View Post
When I hook-up, I make sure that the hitch/ball look like Howie's pix #1. ?
You may have missed the point of the first picture.

The latch should be sitting down parallel to the coupling and Not Raised at the front. The fact that has been raised indicates the pawl is moving upwards to the release position in the coupling, not something you want. This is a result of the lose of material on the stop that is supposed to keep the latch from rising.

I had mentioned I would add a means of holding the latch down but am now questioning if the draw bar that connect the latch to the pawl will be strong enough to counter the force that is causing the lifting.
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Old 01-27-2013, 01:51 PM   #1282
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I have ordered a new Airstream (27FB), expect delivery in a couple months. I'm considering the Andersen hitch, I'll need one when I get the new trailer. My question is which hitch model number? I contacted Andersen and they sent a fitting diagram. To correctly size the brackets I need the vertical width of the trailer frame. Not having the trailer handy and the dealer is a 5 hour drive. I contacted the dealer and got an indication that the vertical width is 5". I'm just looking for confirmation from those that actually bought this hitch that the model Anderson 3350 (4" drop/rise, 2-5/16" ball, 5"–6" frame brackets) is the proper hitch for an Airstream.
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Old 01-27-2013, 02:34 PM   #1283
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I have a 2006 25' FB and it has a 5" frame. The Andersen frame bracket that fits the 5 is the same that fits a 6" frame. So the same bracket for either one. Also, if you have talked to Andersen they should be aware you are getting it for an Airstream so they will send the slightly angled bracket that works best to reduce the chain rub and wear. Good luck and enjoy.
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Old 01-27-2013, 03:40 PM   #1284
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kscherzi View Post
I have ordered a new Airstream (27FB), expect delivery in a couple months. I'm considering the Andersen hitch, I'll need one when I get the new trailer. My question is which hitch model number? I contacted Andersen and they sent a fitting diagram. To correctly size the brackets I need the vertical width of the trailer frame. Not having the trailer handy and the dealer is a 5 hour drive. I contacted the dealer and got an indication that the vertical width is 5". I'm just looking for confirmation from those that actually bought this hitch that the model Anderson 3350 (4" drop/rise, 2-5/16" ball, 5"6" frame brackets) is the proper hitch for an Airstream.
I have the same model you do, except 2009, and use the Andersen 3350 with the same specs you give. Works great!!
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Old 01-29-2013, 10:03 AM   #1285
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I just returned from a 4000 mile trip to Tucson, Phoenix, and Las Vegas using the Andersen I recently purchased. I, too, have the same issues Howie details above. With the chains trying to pull the trailer forward on the ball, the ball is forced against the rear of the coupler, forcing the latch wedge up. I've considered replacing the coupler with a Quickbite or Bulldog model. I don't think there is an Atwood hitch coupler which matches up well with the forces from the Andersen WD Hitch. I've read some posts on another RV group board and some people have had issues with the Quickbite, in particular, rubbing against the trailer hitch forward of the ball due to the prongs which stick out to hold the alignment sticks. Has anyone had any experience with the Quickbite or the Bulldog couplers when used with the Andersen? Any thoughts?
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Old 01-29-2013, 11:00 AM   #1286
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Thompson View Post
I just returned from a 4000 mile trip to Tucson, Phoenix, and Las Vegas using the Andersen I recently purchased. I, too, have the same issues Howie details above. With the chains trying to pull the trailer forward on the ball, the ball is forced against the rear of the coupler, forcing the latch wedge up. I've considered replacing the coupler with a Quickbite or Bulldog model. I don't think there is an Atwood hitch coupler which matches up well with the forces from the Andersen WD Hitch. I've read some posts on another RV group board and some people have had issues with the Quickbite, in particular, rubbing against the trailer hitch forward of the ball due to the prongs which stick out to hold the alignment sticks. Has anyone had any experience with the Quickbite or the Bulldog couplers when used with the Andersen? Any thoughts?
These are exactly the problems I was concerned about in the beginning of this thread, and voiced my concerns in this post: http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...ml#post1157788

The Andersen puts forces on the hitch coupler that I believe it was not designed to withstand. Maybe there are other couplers available that are better.
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Old 01-29-2013, 11:02 AM   #1287
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Thompson View Post
(snip) I've read some posts on another RV group board and some people have had issues with the Quickbite, in particular, rubbing against the trailer hitch forward of the ball due to the prongs which stick out to hold the alignment sticks. Has anyone had any experience with the Quickbite or the Bulldog couplers when used with the Andersen? Any thoughts?
When I found wear damage to my original coupler on my Argosy, I looked into the Bulldog and the Quickbite couplers as a replacement for the original Atwood. The problem I found was that they both are a couple of inches longer than the Atwood which would have either required longer chains on the Andersen, or to move the chain brackets forward. The brackets could not easily go forward due to my propane tank placement and the fact that the bottom base is welded to the frame. I also was in a time situation, and did not want to figure out how to get new chains. So, I replaced my coupler with a new Atwood.

Neither the old and very sloppy coupler I had (with cracks in the internal cup) nor the new one I put on have shown the problem that seems to have come up with you and Howie E. I have towed about 7,000 + miles with the Andersen and those hitches. The rig is put away for the winter now, so I can only tell you what I had seen up until last October.

The only thing I can come up with in my mind and memory is that to properly hook up the Andersen, one needs to have a slight forward pressure on the coupler (so the ball is in the cup front) and with no upward lift pulling the coupler up from the ball. That way the tang on the rear of the ball seats itself properly, and then the forward pressure which is then subsequently applied by the chains is directed to a correctly seated rear tang.

I don't know if that helps at all, I am just "hooking up" in my mind and do recall that the ball in the coupler needs to be properly set and no lifting wants to be done until the ball is locked into it's correct place.

I know both of you are very experienced trailer towers, so I am not sure how you could ever be doing things improperly. But I know that at times I have become a bit casual on how I hooked up, so wonder if there is any possibility you have too. So, ball forward in the cup, and no lifting until the tang is locked in place. I am also assuming no coupler damage from past hookups.
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Old 01-29-2013, 11:47 AM   #1288
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Mine starts out fine with the ball properly seated and the wedge in place to keep the ball from dropping out of the coupler, but within a mile, the ball has forced the wedge upwards about 1/2", similar to Howie's pictures. The wedge would probably need to move upwards another 1/2" for the ball to be able to drop out, however, I'm not one to tempt fate or invite the devil in. An ideal solution would be a clam type connection around the ball which is the same shape as the ball. The Bulldog approaches this, but there seems to be room for improvement. I haven't actually seen a Quickbite in person, but some pics I've seen on the internet suggest there is a void at the rear of the ball clasp which reduces the contact area of the coupler with the ball which "might" not be desirable.
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