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Old 03-14-2011, 09:10 PM   #1
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What's this part for on Reese W-D hitch?

My Reese #67509 weight-distributing hitch arrived today. I've got it all laid out ready to install tomorrow -- except for these two unknown parts. What are these? Where do they go?

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Old 03-14-2011, 09:14 PM   #2
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When you use the pipe to pull up the chains, those are the lockpins that hold everything in place. Look toward the top of your A-frame where these insert. I don't have the exact terminology right at hand. I'll keep an eye on this. Will do the research if no one can give more specific info. Know I've been pretty general (ie, non-helpful).
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:15 PM   #3
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Those are the two pins that lock the lifting buckles in place. Place the chain link onto the hook, pry it up with the metal tube and use the pin to lock the mechanism into place.

Maybe I have a picture somewhere.

Vinnie
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:15 PM   #4
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Haha.. posted at the same minute and neither of us have the correct terminology..
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:19 PM   #5
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They pin the snap-up-brackets in the "up position", you will see once you get the hitch installed. You may want to buy a couple extra, they are easy to loose.
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:25 PM   #6
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A picture is worth a thousand words..
Attached Thumbnails
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Name:	Reese hitch 001.jpg
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ID:	124551   Click image for larger version

Name:	Reese hitch 002.jpg
Views:	156
Size:	269.3 KB
ID:	124552  

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Old 03-14-2011, 10:01 PM   #7
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Once I forgot to install one of these pins and towed my trailer from the house to the storage facility (12 miles). The arm stayed in the set position, but the pin fell off of the frame where I set it somewhere along the way. You can find these at most RV shops and I now carry an extra.
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:26 PM   #8
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Thank you all... and especially Airslide for the photos. Hoping for an uneventful install tomorrow.

While we're on the subject of WD hitches... I've got a Jeep Wrangler (tow rating 3,500 lbs) towing a 16' (3300 lb) International CCD, and I find that without the WDH, it's really bogged down -- have to go into 3rd gear to climb a hill, etc... just seems very underpowered (then again, so does the Jeep without a trailer!).

I hear the WDH vs. non WDH setup is night and day, dramatic difference. But HOW is that difference felt? Am I likely to "feel" more towing power, less bogged down, by moving some of the weight from rear axle to front? In all the reading I've done on WDH, I have yet to read about how the difference manifests itself, other than safety, which to me seems to be something that's felt after the "OH SH*T" moment, rather than during normal driving.
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:33 PM   #9
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You're welcome on the pictures..

Now let me understand what your saying here? Are you asking if the WDH will help with the overall tow ability? Yes it will handle much better and be safer in all kinds of road conditions however it wont help you get up the hill any faster. You may just be in 3rd gear as you tug that CCD around. Keep an eye on the engine temp. If it tends to get hot while your climbing the hills it might just be working too hard for the load.

Im sure others will chime in. I would suggest starting a new thread for that topic as this one will only attract the hitch pin question.

Good luck

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Old 03-14-2011, 10:40 PM   #10
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Well, yes & no... I do understand it will improve overall tow ability, but was just wondering if (hoping) it would somehow let me feel less bogged down -- that is, was wondering if some of the bogged down feeling was because I had so much weight on the rear axle, and if I relieved it of some of that weight, would the motor feel more responsive. I guess I'm about to find out... If the install goes well tomorrow - and it seems pretty straight forward if you pay attention to the measurements - I will register the trailer and give it a test. It's been sitting in the driveway unregistered since I got it mid October. You're right - belongs in its own thread - I just figured I'd tack it on to the end of this one if the answer was quick & easy.
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:46 PM   #11
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Maybe the fact that the Jeep wont have the front end up in the air so much it might feel more responsive. I too had a wrangler and used it to tow my car trailer once in a while to work. The inline 6 just wasnt big on horsepower. Give us your results. We look forward to the report.

and pictures.. we love pictures.

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Old 03-15-2011, 09:41 AM   #12
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What's this part for on Reese W-D hitch?

Quote:
Originally Posted by amm3824 View Post
Well, yes & no... I do understand it will improve overall tow ability, but was just wondering if (hoping) it would somehow let me feel less bogged down -- that is, was wondering if some of the bogged down feeling was because I had so much weight on the rear axle, and if I relieved it of some of that weight, would the motor feel more responsive.
With just 200 pounds of trailer tow rating above the GVWR of your coach, it is unlikely that the addition of a weight distributing hitch is going to do much to improve towing performance. Downshifting on hills or grades is to be expected, particularly when you are so close to your tow vehicle's trailer tow rating.

The weight distributing hitch is a near necessity, and may very well be required by the manufacturer to achieve the 3,500 pound trailer tow rating. Your Jeep will definitely be a more stable tow vehicle once the weight distribution hitch is properly setup.

Good luck with your hitch setup!

Kevin

P.S.: The towing performance issue that you are experiencing is part of the reason that many of us who have been towing for a number of years try to remain at no more than 80% of our tow vehicle's factory trailer tow rating.
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Old 03-17-2011, 10:13 PM   #13
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With the help of my neighbor's level driveway (compared to my mudway) I got the hitch installed today. I do have a question for the group about which of two settings to use for the hitch head angle -- see further below. But first the report.

Unloaded, the Jeep sits almost perfectly level. I used the bottom edge of the wheel wells as references points for height when measuring loaded/unloaded stance. Note that the Jeep's wells are at different heights - just an oddity on the Jeep - but it sits almost perfectly level when unloaded.

Measurements (in inches from ground to reference points on wheel wells)

Front 37-3/4, Rear 36-3/8 - unloaded
Front 38-1/4, Rear 34-1/4 - loaded with ball hitch, no WD hitch
Front 37-1/2, Rear 35-3/4 - loaded with WDH, hitch head angle setting #2
Front 37-1/2, Rear 35-1/2 - loaded with WDH, hitch head angle setting #1

With the ball hitch only, the rear really sagged. With the WDH (Reese #67509), everything's nearly back to level. What I'm wondering is which hitch head angle I should go with. These are the two most extreme angles available on this head. With any other angles, I think the ball head would be too high for the trailer's ball socket. As it is, the trailer's socket is about 3 or 4 inches higher than the ball height, so I didn't want to angle the hitch head up any more.

So... the observations:

With #2 vs #1, the difference in vehicle stance was only 1/4 inch at the rear axle. Negligible, I assume. In addition, in both cases, the trailer seemed level enough, no big difference between the two.

The differences were when I hooked up and went to raise the spring bars:

In #2, there was less tension on the spring bar required when hooking the chain onto the catch point, and I hooked it on the 6th link.

In #1, where the hitch head angle was at the greatest of the 6 possible settings (i.e. tilting downward max), there was noticeably more tension required when I pulled up the spring bars, and I was only able to hook to the 8th link on the chain, couldn't use any less chain length. I also noticed that there was less clearance between spring bars (unhooked) and ground when the trailer was dropped onto the ball, than in the #2 configuration. That is, the bars actually dug into / pressed against the ground.

So.. which one of these configurations is best? Obviously it's more convenient in #2 when the spring bars can rest freely without hitting the ground, but in general, do I want to have more or fewer chain links between the spring bars and snap-up brackets? Or does it just depend on how level your vehicle sits? In my situation there's barely any difference in vehicle stance. Is it a toss-up?

Keep in mind one detail about my setup is that in an unloaded, unhooked configuration, with tow vehicle (Jeep) and trailer (16' Int'l) level, the top of the Jeep's hitch ball is about 3-4 inches higher than the top of the trailer's socket. In the Reese docs, it says you want about 1 inch higher, not 3 to 4. The Jeep just sits that high. This is why I angled the head down as much as possible (I assume that was the right thing to do... right?!)

Test drive showed no problems. I didn't see the night and day difference between weight-distrib and non, as some people describe, but then it's been 6 months since I towed this thing, and test drive was only 8 miles, so I'm not tuned in to the differences very well yet. I have no doubt it's better/safer. When I levered the snap-up thingies and heard/saw the Jeep's rear axle coming up, it was VERY satisfying!

So... which of these two configurations should I go with?

Sorry to be so long winded. Photo shows #1 configuration (steepest hitch head angle)

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Old 03-17-2011, 10:45 PM   #14
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Another pic, see prev msg.

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