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Old 04-10-2014, 02:15 PM   #841
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By the way, just to clarify. The noise was when I moved after a stop and not when I stopped (in which case it could be the Hensley bump). But, as I said, I didn't hear it last time.
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Old 04-15-2014, 10:18 PM   #842
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I'd love to read all 61 pages, but I just spent the last 90 minutes trying to hitch up my trailer. I just sent Sean this note. If anyone here can chime in with any quick tips, I'd appreciate it:

About every fourth time I try to hook-up, it takes me 1-2 hours. Other times, I back right up, it slides right in, I latch on, and I'm good to go.

But, every 3-4th time, it just makes me want to rip the hitch off and sell it on Craigslist. I'll get the stinger about 2/3 to 3/4 of the way in and it just seizes up on me. The best I can tell, this tends to happen when the hitch unit on the trailer has a slight downward angle and the stinger on the truck also has a slight downward angle, so they're barely meeting in somewhat of a "V". It's just the weight of each device causing this downward angle. Obviously, they were able to be aligned when I previously unhooked, but it's a booger sometimes getting the angles just right to hook up again.

Do you have any hints or tricks for me? I know there is support online, but frankly I don't have the time to read through the 60-page thread on the Airstream forum. I almost feel like I might need a scissor jack or something to hold the hitch unit up while I'm backing into it to maintain a flatter angle or something of that sort.

This tends to happen when the hitch gets moved or the trailer needs to be leveled after unhooking. If I'm able to not touch the hitch at all, I tend to have a decent time hooking back up, but sometimes the angle of the pad you park on means you have to raise lower the tongue to get the trailer level, and then it's a b**** to get it back to the right angle. I'll get the stinger fairly centered in the hole, and it looks fine until it gets about 3/4 in and then the slightly closed angle causes it to seize up just before I can get it to the beveled portion of the stinger.

I'm trying to take my trailer in for some repairs in the morning, and I just spent over an hour trying to hook up. I'm giving up and going to try again in the morning when I wake up, but I just thought I'd send you a note in case you have some handy tips or tricks.

If anyone here can chime in between now and tomorrow morning, I'd be extremely grateful.
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Old 04-15-2014, 10:33 PM   #843
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One thing that pops to mind:
When first attempting to hook up make sure there is no tension on the WD jacks. If you encounter the problems you mention then use a combination of the tongue jack and the WD jacks to get the hitch head at the correct vertical height and angle to allow the stinger to slide in easily. This may take a bit of patience and trial and error, but it will work.

Also remember that if the TV is backing at an angle to the hitch, then the hitch head must be offset to the opposite side to get it at the correct horizontal angle.


Ken
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Old 04-15-2014, 11:22 PM   #844
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The only times I have trouble hitching is when I fail to get enough tension off the jacks. One time, I had forgotten to untension the jacks when unhitching and I couldn't hitch until I discovered my error.

Make sure than when you unhitch that you can easily wiggle the bars with your foot as you ease the jacks.
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Old 04-15-2014, 11:35 PM   #845
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Perhaps if you can get someone to help - video your efforts

There must be a simple solution - hitching ours has been easy once all lined up

Sounds incredibly frustrating though!!
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Old 04-15-2014, 11:52 PM   #846
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Dear Zepplin

Try to make it a two person task.

E.G. my wife backs the truck with the stinger toward the trailer.
I adjust the height of the hitch for the stinger. There is no tension on the WD bars. The hitch head is LEVEL! ( adjust the jacks if necessary)

Most of our frustration occurs/ ed because the mirrors create a distortion such that she used to back the trailer at a slight angle with the nose of the truck to the left. Now, no problem.

Do you have a back up camera on your vehicle. We do, but my wife has refined the process so that she makes it look easy. ( and rarely uses the camera)

Hope this helps. I wouldn't trade this hitch for any other. …saved us a couple of times in the wind.

With time, you too will concur the learning curve. Good luck...Zigi
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Old 04-16-2014, 12:03 AM   #847
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The ProPride hitch head receiver must be at the same vertical angle as the stinger. Lay a torpedo level on the ProPride stinger (the part that faces aft towards the hitch) and mark the position of the bubble. Then put the torpedo level into the hitch head and adjust the hitch head with jack screws until the bubble is the same as you marked from the receiver.

Do this with the receiver backed up only a few inches from the hitch and lined up horizontally, and the hitch head at the same height as the receiver. Back it in and it should side right in, a little grease can help.

I always check/adjust this vertical angle and have never had trouble backing in.
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Old 04-16-2014, 05:40 AM   #848
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I have addressed this in detail here before. Until I learned this process, I had a couple rough experiences and empathize with how maddening it is.

When you get the stinger in and it "freezes" as you describe it, just put your TV in park with parking brake on (so it doesn't move), go to the weight distribution jacks and start adjusting them to loosen the tension (or tighten if that makes it level) and the unit will literally start sliding on to the stinger.

When you see how easy that is, you'll laugh.

Short story is how you unhitch determines how you re-hitch. Re-read the un hitching instructions several times (it's not the most well written manual) and then the hitching instructions. Now that you've experienced this problem and heard all these responses to your question, it will click for you.

Good luck!
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Old 04-16-2014, 09:18 AM   #849
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I do not want to seem condescending. Although the written manual may not be perfectly clear there are some very good YouTube videos that are perfect. I think those videos lead to foolproof hitching and unhitching. Add to that, Sean is willing to answer questions any time. It does not get much better than that.
Larry
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Old 04-16-2014, 09:34 AM   #850
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I had major problems at times hooking back up, and in every instance it was because I unhooked in a dip where the front axle of the truck was in the road on a higher level, and the rear axle in the dip. This caused the horizontal plain of the draw bar to not match the horizontal plain of the hitch socket where the draw bar inserted.


On one of these events, the worst one, after inserting the draw bar as far as it would go (about half way), I removed the "U" bolts on the WD bars, releasing the bars from the jacks and thereby allowing the hitch to swing down to align with the draw bar, and then the draw bar went into the hitch with ease.


Once, I inserted the draw bar as far as it would go, then jacked up the trailer with the truck, and the draw bar went into the hitch.


In every case that I had difficulty in hitching back up, the horizontal plain alignment was the problem.
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Old 04-16-2014, 10:48 AM   #851
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Not sure if others do this but when unhitching I lower the tongue jack until it just starts to lift. I lower the spring bar jacks until the bars are loose. This is not running them all the way to the bottom. Usually they are up about 2-3 inches. Then raise the tongue until I see the coupler head just start to lift. It doesn't lift very much but it is there. Finish unhooking and pull away.

When re-hooking up at that spot the stinger will always be a bit different in height since it is no longer under load and the springs/shocks on the truck have gone back to their normal heights. But I simply back up, check that the stinger is aligned by adjusting the trailer height and slides right in.

To help with height alignment I've got a stick of 3/4PVC with a piece of tape on it. I put it next to the stinger, towards the truck to check the top edge of the tapered section then check that against the top of the opening on the trailer.

It is all about the need for the assembly to be aligned.
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Old 04-16-2014, 11:02 AM   #852
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I am curious why some do not fully lower the WD jacks when unhitching. Jacks fully down creates the maximum free play range of motion for the whole system. This makes for fewer hitching situations where jack adjustment is necessary. Am I missing something?

Ken
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Old 04-16-2014, 11:11 AM   #853
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Ghaynes is spot on. Excellent description of the relationship between unhitching and rehitching.

Ken - the manual is clear about only loosening the WD jacks so they kick loose with your foot. I suspect because if you take them all the way down, you're still out of horizontal alignment. Ghaynes' post is (in my experience) the perfect approach.
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Old 04-16-2014, 11:32 AM   #854
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ag&Au View Post
I am curious why some do not fully lower the WD jacks when unhitching. Jacks fully down creates the maximum free play range of motion for the whole system. This makes for fewer hitching situations where jack adjustment is necessary. Am I missing something?

Ken

It all has to do with how you initially setup the hitch, and how you adjust the jacks. I set mine up so when the jacks were fully down, the hitch was level, and then I counted turns going up so I knew exactly how much weight distribution I had on the hitch.


Others set them up so somewhere in the middle of the jack's height, or even close to the bottom, but not at the bottom, the jack is level, and then they measure the height of the jacks for weight distribution.


Each has their own merits, but personally I didn't like having to have a tape measure or other measuring devise in hand to hook up the trailer. Others don't like to count turns.
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