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Old 03-24-2007, 08:07 PM   #183
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Astoria , Oregon
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2air -

I recently did shear off two shear bolts. I first went to the local Ace Hardware, but was told that type 5 or type 8 bolts would tend to bend but not shear in this setting, and that these bolts would not be suitable. I purchased the emergency kit and installed two bolts. These have a hex head, but no linear markings on top. Jarod at Hensley told me that they were "low grade" but did not specify a number designation. He also mentioned that Hensley had changed the bolt diameter on hitches now being manufactured.

Mark
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Old 03-24-2007, 09:11 PM   #184
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hi mark

good info!

how did you manage to shear the bolts?

lets hope they functioned as intended...

cheers
2air'
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Old 03-24-2007, 10:15 PM   #185
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1959 24' Tradewind
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2air -

A month ago we had a 4" wet snowfall. I left home at 0-dark-hundred, down my steep driveway to a 90 degree right turn, and skidded the last 10 feet. Truck successfully turned south, but trailer was still somewhat eastbound, resulting in the trailer wheels dropping off the asphalt (3 inches or so) onto the gravel roadbed and a loud CLUNK as if the truck hit trailer corner, but it did not. After towing awhile, I was convinced that I felt more "play" in the trailer than usual when coming to a stop, or when starting from a standstill.

The shear bolts were not present, and the U-brackets were loose on the frame. Analyzing this retrospectively makes me question whether the U-brackets were insufficiently tight to stand up to this trauma, or whether all the trouble happened during the skid and diverging truck/trailer vectors that followed.

Bottom line: check the torque on the U-brackets, as the manual says, frequently, and carry an emergency kit of spare parts.

No long term harm occurred, but there was potential for serious trouble had I continued 260 miles to my fishing trip destination.

Mark
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Old 03-24-2007, 10:31 PM   #186
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Wiltrakis

After towing awhile, I was convinced that I felt more "play" in the trailer than usual when coming to a stop, or when starting from a standstill.

Bottom line: check the torque on the U-brackets, as the manual says, frequently, and carry an emergency kit of spare parts.Mark
thanks for sharing mark

that IS a useful reminder to all of us...

i have no history with other hitches but the towing experience with a haha is SO specific,

that if any ANY UNUSUAL PLAY is noted, we should pull over, inspect and check...

i had the occasion to loosen the struts a few turns on each side.

and forgot to retension before driving onward...

there was as you noted some "play" not usually present...

after about 5 miles i pulled over and found the mistake....

had i ignored it, the mounting points would have looked like richl's in post 143,
or the shear bolts might have gone the way of yours...

good lesson all!

cheers
2air'
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Old 03-25-2007, 07:59 AM   #187
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Wiltrakis
2air -

I recently did shear off two shear bolts. I first went to the local Ace Hardware, but was told that type 5 or type 8 bolts would tend to bend but not shear in this setting, and that these bolts would not be suitable. I purchased the emergency kit and installed two bolts. These have a hex head, but no linear markings on top. Jarod at Hensley told me that they were "low grade" but did not specify a number designation. He also mentioned that Hensley had changed the bolt diameter on hitches now being manufactured.

Mark
Shear pins or bolts are usually made from low grade metal and are not rated in grade, as in grade 5 or grade 8 as the high strength bolts are. Their function is to break under extreme stress and save the components they join.

The person at the hardware store was correct and you should never replace a shear bolt with a graded bolt unless it is in an emergency situation and nothing else is available.

I recently had to do just this in a slide-out on a large MoHo. After talking with the OEM tech support, they said that it was a design flaw and the shear bolt should be replaced with a grade 8....BIG DIFFERENCE!!
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Old 03-28-2007, 01:58 PM   #188
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2005 31' Classic
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Stripping the Hensley Arrow for Painting

Hello fellow HaHa (I don't know why it is called that) Users:

I have had a 25' Safari for the past 3 years but recently sold her and have moved on to a 2005 30' Classic. I did tow with a Reese Dual Cam but obtained a fairly good conditioned Hensley Arrow hitch due to my concern over the increased length of the trailer.

I am going to take everyone back several topics ago and talk about and ask questions about disassembly of the hitch for repainting. I am currently in the process of stripping down the Hensley to it's parts in order to remove the badly peeling paint and repaint it the nice grey I saw 2airishuman do with his about 11 pages back.

My question is two fold. First, those that have stripped the paint off did they have it professionally sandblasted? If so, how far did they go with the disassembly?

Second, I am trying to remove the two bushings on the bottom of the hitch, the holes the WD bars go into. It, however, is not coming out and I think it is because I am unable to fully remove the Zerk screw. Do I just power the screw out? I think it is right at the end but I am fearful of crushing the threads on the outside. Additionally, on the inside of the bushings a solid 1" cylinder is present which fell out of one side. What is that for???

Oh boy, I know I am a newbee at this but I really wanted a nice hitch to go on my new silver palace. Any help or information is greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Michael
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Old 03-28-2007, 02:19 PM   #189
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hi michael and welcome aboard...

the haha (hensley arrow hitch apparatus) is a joy for towing....

not necessary to completely strip old paint....

depending on the current condition, sanding, rust removal and a good primer should be adequate...

and new paint will start chipping eventually too, so use something that can be touched up easily....

how about a picture or 2?

yes the zerks must be completelely extracted for bushing removal...

the bushings are threaded AND have a lock nut that tensions down...

i've posted pictures of this process too...

starting with post #91....

you will likely need new zerk fittings anyway and perhaps new bushings, depending on wear...

all of the parts (jack assembly, brackets, struts) remove easily for painting. do not try to dissasemble the main body,

just clean/degrease and sand. consider masking off the bearing caps, or paint them as mine are...

hope this helps, and ask away, haha users are standing by!

cheers
2air'
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Old 03-28-2007, 03:30 PM   #190
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman
the bushings are threaded AND have a lock nut that tensions down...
correction, the zerks are threaded AND have a lock nut that tensions down....

cheers
2air'
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Old 03-29-2007, 01:05 AM   #191
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1999 23' Safari
Palm Desert , California
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Spring Bar Question

I am trying to understand the Hensley. We got our trailer a couple months ago and have only towed it a couple times–once home from the dealer–they installed the Hensley for us and it was only their third so they weren’t much help–and then just this past weekend we towed it about 60 miles to get new tires on it. I have spent a lot of time reading the Hensley installation manual and also the posts in this thread. Felt fairly comfortable this last time we towed but then I think I pretty well know the manual by heart! I just want to be sure that I am understanding it all correctly. We have not had any problem hooking up but are a little unsure about the spring bars–from what the manual says and also from the posts, it appears that you should tension the jacks to at least the first marking. I think when we towed this last time we had the spring bars tensioned too tight and the trailer was off level. We hooked up today just to practise and spent some time playing with the jacks and we can only tension them down just a very few turns–they are still a good 2 inches from the first mark. If we tighten any further the tongue of the trailer goes up pushing the trailer off level and pushing the car down in the rear–also off level. Is it a problem that we are not able to tension down to the first mark–does it mean that an adjustment needs to be made elsewhere. We have a 4 inch drop and the trailer hitch height is 17 3/4 and the suburban’s hitch height is 17 inches. We have been driving a 33 ft motorhome pulling a small car so towing a trailer is a new learning experience for us–surely all this learning helps to keep the brain young and active!

Gail
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Old 03-29-2007, 07:24 AM   #192
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The Hensley will forgive a lot of things, but you really need to transfer some weight to the front axle of your tow vehicle for best results. Tensioning the spring bars is the only way to do that. I would contact Hensley directly and ask them your question. If you purchased the Hensley new, then you have a lifetime guarantee which would include them sending you a different drop hitch if they think it appropriate. If you are indeed pulling with a car rather than a pickup, it may be that your 4" drop is too much. You may need a 2" or even a straight shank. When properly hitched, you should see the front end of your vehicle squat as measured by a tape from the wheel well lip to the ground. Of course the best way to tell that you are transferring weight is to weigh the front axle both hitched to your trailer and unhitched to see the difference. Call Hensley, you haven't given us many details with which to help you and your dealer by admission doesn't have much experience.
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Old 03-29-2007, 09:20 AM   #193
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Gail---I think GStephens has given you good advice. On most any weight distributing hitch, Hensley or others, I have always found they work best if you start with the ball height about an inch higher than the hitch,sometimes slightly more, but never lower than the trailer as you say your's is. I too suspect you'll need to go with a shank with less drop, probably the 2" that's available from Hensley. If you purchsed it new they will exchange it free. ----------Pieman
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Old 03-29-2007, 09:48 AM   #194
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2007 25' Safari FB SE
Lady Lake , Florida
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Parts, grease, etc?

We have a new Haha and I am going to order the emergency parts kit. Should I order any other accessories? I want the hitch helper, but my husband doesn't think we need it. What about grease, etc?

Thank you!
Pat
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Old 03-29-2007, 09:58 AM   #195
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hi pat

grease the ball once per year approximately...

no special brand needed i use a siloxiane based flavor...

some fine the helper useful, i do not.

you can have mine IF you really want one...

after receiving the parts kit, open it and spread out the bits...

most of these items can be purchased at a hardware or auto tractor supply store...

i've got 2-3 of each item, buying extras for less than the haha supplied kit...

i've found it useful to carry a can of your favorite spray lube, mine is boeshield...

Rust Prevention Rust Protection Metal Penetrating Lubrication Anti Corrosives Multi Purpose Metal Protection BOESHIELD T-9

your haha is new? have you clear coated it yet with auto paint?

if not consider buyiing some allis chalmers orange paint for touch ups...

cheers
2air'
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Old 03-29-2007, 10:38 AM   #196
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hapitauk
We have not had any problem hooking up but are a little unsure about the spring bars–from what the manual says and also from the posts, it appears that you should tension the jacks to at least the first marking....Gail
hi gail

do you have any pictures? they help us visualize your set up...

in post #105 or in the haha manual pages 12-18 are pictures of the jack assemblies...

do you have '3 holes showing' on the spring bar extensions from the lowers of the jacks?

also which spring bars r u using 750, 1000, or 1400?

these 2 issues will affect your ideal mark for tensioning...

along with stinger drop, as already mentioned.

also u are towing with a suburban? IF its a 4x4 the 4 inch drop should be about ideal...

there are 2 basic approaches to proper spring bar tension...
1. eye balls and a tape measure
2. using the actual axle weight recordings from a scale...

#1 can get it close, but #2 is much more accurate.

with #1, the basics are
-measure wheel well height at the 4 tv corners and measure belt line height (fore/aft) on the trailer when level and on very level ground.
-raise or lower the tongue jack to allow for hook up.
-return trailer to previously level measures using the tongue jack
-tighten jack heads on the haha until the trailer tongue jack just leaves the ground, then retract the tongue jack..
-continue adjusting the spring bar jack assemblies until the tv wheel wells are equally compressed from the orignal measurements
(usually 3/4-1 1/2 inches lower all around...
-trailer should remain level, if not readjust jacks up or down...
-the final position may leave tv slightly lower at the rear end (1/4-3/4 inch)
-drive around and park on level ground, repeat measurements.

tv tires must be properly inflated for this process to work
and changing the load/cargo in either tv or trailer will alter the adjustments...

there are a dozen threads here on adjusting weight distribution systems and some useful posts in those threads...

search weight distribution or load distribution and read awhile...

there are also some threads on using the 'cat scales' , here is mine...

http://www.airforums.com/forum...ers-17984.html

i'll be updating that thread soon with new measurements...

one point of confusion in your post...

you mention that tightening the jacks raises the trailer tongue, but lowers the tv rear end...

it should actually raise the tv rear end a bit and lower the front end.

cheers
2air'

i'm sure others can add to these suggestions, we've got lots of sharp tow heads here...
take a few pictures and keep us posted on the process, this makes the ultimate haha users guide better!
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