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Old 09-15-2016, 08:51 AM   #1
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2017 19' Flying Cloud
Central , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 73
Anti-Sway Bar or WD with Anti-Sway for 19' FC?

We will soon be taking delivery of our very first travel trailer - a 19' FC. We have never towed a trailer of any type.

My tow vehicle is a 2015 5.7L V8 Toyota Tundra (with tow package). The owners manual suggests a WD hitch is not required unless the GVWR of the trailer is over 5000 lbs ( the GVWR for the 19' is 4500 lbs). I've talked with Toyota technical and they have reiterated that the WD hitch is not required, but suggest that the WD hitch "would not inhibit the towing situation." Some people indicate that a WD hitch on this light of a trailer will cause it to "porpoise" while traveling. Other people suggest to "never" use just the anti-sway bar. Others suggest that you use a WD hitch if the GVWR of the trailer is greater than 50% of the GVWR of the tow vehicle (in my case, the 19' would exceed 50% of my tow vehicle GVWR).

What experiences are out there for me to draw from? What are your suggestion/comments regarding the comments I've been given on the use of the Anti-sway and or WD/anti-sway hitches?

Thank you!
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Old 09-15-2016, 09:06 AM   #2
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Following as I am also interested in the details :-)
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Old 09-15-2016, 09:31 AM   #3
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2021 16' Bambi
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As far as needing a WD hitch, I would suggest that you hook your trailer to your truck and see how it reacts. If it jacks the front end up, then yes you need weight distribution to correct that. Sway control is always nice in my opinion. Depending on the truck used, sometimes I use the WD, other times not. i.e the 1/2 ton requires WD, the 3/4 ton does not. My family and I have always used the Reese WD/sway control systems and they work flawlessly. Never tried anything else so I cannot comment on others.
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Old 09-15-2016, 09:41 AM   #4
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2014 25' International
2006 23' Safari SE
Fort Saunders , Wyoming
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Never needed Sway Control with my Tundra & 23' Safari

I towed a 23 foot Safari with a 2006 Tundra and a 2012 Tundra. Towing with the larger 2012 Tundra... the 23 foot Safari was EXCELLENT. (just the cargo limit for the half ton suspension is the limiting factor)

The 23 foot was towed with an Equalizer Hitch that used the chains and bars with the smaller 4.7L Tundra and wheel base. The hitch had, as an accessory that the dealer installed, an anti sway bar that you could tighten or loosen depending on need.

I never 'needed' it. The smaller sized 2006 Tundra pulled the 23 foot Safari with ease. Even strong cross winds in Wyoming... no effect. Passing 18 wheelers you would notice a push and pull when they passed... but sway was never an issue.

The 2014 25 foot International pulled by the 2012 Tundra is currently using the Equalizer with sway bars and weight distribution bar system. Never an issue, although the need for the weight distribution, for sure. No sway at any speed. A win / win system in my opinion.

Although the chain system and bars worked excellent... some push expensive hitches as being your only option. Maybe for a 27 to 34 foot Airstream.

No one wants to purchase a hitch and find out that it was not adequate. So you live with that thought and go for the more expensive hitch as many say 'your trailer will sway to the point of rolling it over as a total loss'.

Following some threads is like a member discussing Nursing Homes and which one treats you best and the rest will rob you and toss you out onto the street. Take all advice seriously, but my experience has been the Tundra does well with my Equalizer hitches.

I am led to believe that a tow vehicle that has a short wheel base is more likely to REQUIRE sway control. As you get into the 'boat class' of pickup trucks... the need is less, if at all. My F350 has enough iron built into the vehicle to handle most any trailer. The Tundra... absolutely a wonderful tow vehicle... just a bit light in the cargo load. Towing with a Tundra... does fine, no sway and braking is excellent. Plenty of power to pull up a mountain without overheating the engine... ever.

Towing with a 3/4 to 1 ton pickup... just do not fall a sleep... as it rides that well!

Cliffcharb had great advice. Try it, you may like it. Start slow and work up to highway speeds to verify that everything feels... right.
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Old 09-15-2016, 10:57 AM   #5
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2010 20' Flying Cloud
Hailey , Idaho
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Get both...but if for some reason you only buy one get the WD hitch..definitely. jon
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Old 09-15-2016, 11:03 AM   #6
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2010 20' Flying Cloud
Hailey , Idaho
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...but suggest that the WD hitch "would not inhibit the towing situation." I love that line. When you read this forum it becomes clear that there are two lines of thought: Dem that try to squeeze in weights right up to the limit, and dem that are more prudent. A WD hitch, as your salesman so elegantly put it, cannot hurt and will always help make your ride go smoother...and make your travels safer. The anti-sway bar for your (as well as my) size AS is only icing on the cake. jon
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Old 09-15-2016, 11:06 AM   #7
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Greenwood , Mississippi
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I think I would get the sway control only because it is a single axle trailer.
I don't think you need weight distribution at all, but you can't really know until you set the trailer on the ball.
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Old 09-15-2016, 11:06 AM   #8
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I've a new 19' and tow with a Blue ox WD hitch. Tows wonderfully! Used a Reese on my 16' sport and never a issue. I beleive WD payssoff in comfort, handling and wear and tear not to mention peace of mind. Just takes on emergency lane change and you're a believer !
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Old 09-15-2016, 11:41 AM   #9
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Mesa , Arizona
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We just towed a 19 ft vintage single axel 1500 miles home on the ball only.

We usually have Reese Weight Distribution and Sway Control on our other trailers.

We are definitely putting them on this new trailer. It wasn't a experiment just a means of getting home. If was not bad but you could certainly tell we were without some of our regular safety equipment.

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Old 09-15-2016, 11:43 AM   #10
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Aurora , Colorado
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For the extra $50 that the anti-sway brake costs, it's an insignificant cost for the one time you may need it.

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Old 09-15-2016, 11:45 AM   #11
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2008 20' Safari SE
Ranchos de Taos , New Mexico
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I thought weight-distributing hitches were part of a "tow package" on a pickup truck. My 2001 GMC HD ton has one. We tow a 20' Safari SE with it. That much truck is rather a bit overkill, but it was purchased primarily to tow a horse trailer. (No sway control but no sway.)
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Old 09-15-2016, 12:09 PM   #12
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We towed our 19' Bambi with a 2007 Toyota Tacoma from the beginning, and have JUST replaced it with a new 2016 Tacoma. We use an Equal-I-Zer Hitch sway control/weight distribution hitch. It's a great all-in-one hitch set up for this size of trailer (and larger). It's very easy to use and keeps us safe on the road. Your Tundra will be plenty of truck for the Bambi and you could probably get by without sway control, but why take that chance? I'd get it. We have never regretted having this set-up...
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Old 09-15-2016, 12:18 PM   #13
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Been towing an 18' trailer with a f150 (little bigger truck) a lot since May. About 500lb tongue weight.I Wouldn't be comfortable without my blue Ox sway pro. I slacked the bars once to see how it handled without it, lots of porpoising and a bit squirrelly. Trailer movement was much more noticeable. With the hitch set, tows much more smoothly and better control of tv and trailer.
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Old 09-15-2016, 12:22 PM   #14
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Pearland , Texas
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Bare minimum, please use some sway control, you never know when you will need it. WD hitch is your choice for the trailer and tow vehicle you are talking about. You can get a receiver hitch with ball and ball for sway control, I would always use it, no matter what someone else says, IMO.
Be safe at all costs.
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Old 09-15-2016, 12:25 PM   #15
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My Grand Cherokee will tow the 19 just fine, but the dealer put on the WD and sway control and I use them every time. Makes a big difference on "humped" intersections and railroad crossings. The GC will level itself but I'd rather not put extra strain on the air suspension.

I'd use a WD on any light pickup especially newer ones.
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Old 09-15-2016, 01:03 PM   #16
short suff
2020 23' Flying Cloud
Gallatin , Tennessee
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We have had our 16' ft Bambi for about 4 months and like you had ? along the same line. Like many have said it can't hurt so I took the plunge and added the sway and weight hitch. Best thing I did. It may be over kill since my tow vehicle is an 04 Landcruiser but an ounce of prevention saves a pound of cure or something like that? Anything that would help in an emergency situation I am in for. BTW we love our trailer and enjoy watching the scenery and not worrying about my trailer. Hope you have many safe travels.
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Old 09-15-2016, 01:06 PM   #17
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Euless , Texas
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Tundra towing

I tow with a 2013 Tundra with the tow package, the 4.6L engine and have towed my 28' Argosy and assorted utility trailers both with and without bars and sway control. The Tundra has "automatic" sway control which uses the truck rear brakes to counter sway but have not been impressed with it and do not rely on it. Another thought with regard to sway control. If you are in an accident and do not have sway control or equalizer bars, that could be used in court in an effort to try to find you at fault. Even if it tows great, I would at the least put a friction sway control on.

I tow a 6400# gross wt. trailer with a 550# tongue weight and carry about 400# in the bed. I have both 750# and 1000# bars and with the 1000# my front height is the same as empty and the rear is only down about 1". I suspect your tongue weight is similar or possibly even heaver. I went to 2 friction sway controls because one was not enough when I bought my last set of tires (Michelin Defender LTX).

The bars lower the nose of the truck so my steering is not light and the sway controls stiffen side to side movement and make a noticeable difference in a straight line.
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Old 09-15-2016, 01:15 PM   #18
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2006 19' Safari
East Greenbush , New York
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The 19 Bambi hitch weight is approx 500 lbs, so says my sherline gauge. That's enough to significantly drop the back and raise the front. On a 1/2 ton, like my Chevy.

For safety's sake, you must use weight distribution to raise the back (lower the front). That restores safe steering. I use 600 lb bars, as per Airstream Andy. Tows like a dream.

As to sway control, I've never installed any. I've never felt the need for it. A larger trailer would need sway control, I suppose, like the Reese dual cam.

Just my own experience and observation.

2006 Safari Bambi 19'
2017 Silverado LT Z71 Double Cab 1500
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Old 09-15-2016, 01:20 PM   #19
2016 19ft flying cloud
Spokane , Washington
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 160
We also have a 19 ft FC and tow with a tundra like yours,5.7
Our Airsteam dealer installs equalizer hitches on all their trailers out the door
We love our hitch and there is never any sway or problems,,I highly recommend it
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Old 09-15-2016, 01:25 PM   #20
2016 19ft flying cloud
Spokane , Washington
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 160
Only one problem if you get the equalizer hitch
It works so well for new first time trailer haulers , you will want to trade up to a 23 ft within a Month or two of owning the Bambi,,they really do pull like a dream

Congratulations on the new trailer
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