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Old 08-09-2020, 07:10 AM   #1
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Equalizer 16k...ugh

I recently purchased an Airstream. As part of the deal, it came with an Equalizer hitch. Unfortunately, they installed in the 16k version. I suspect they did that due to the 2.5" receiver on my truck.

Truck: 2020 Ram 3500 Single Rear Wheel
Airstream: 2020 Classic 30

After reading about this, its clear having an overrated hitch is a bad idea as it puts stress on the trailer. So I'm trying to decide how to remedy this. Options would be....

A) Live with it - The ride was good. Obviously zero sway. Bumps in cities/harsher roads were felt but honestly I haven't pulled a trailer much so I don't have a great point of comparison. It was better than my Freightliner Super C. But I can't tell how much extra stress its putting on the brand new airstream.

B) Replace the bars - Sounds like some people do it on the lower rated hitches. If possible, I don't know how much difference it would make. IS there anything else I could change on the existing setup to make this work well?

C) Replace the equalizer - Either Equalizer with the right weight rating (12K) or get Hensley/Propride/other sway hitch.

Getting ready to leave on a cross-country trip and want to make sure I am doing it safely for both me and the airstream.

Thanks!
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Old 08-09-2020, 08:40 AM   #2
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Curious about how this turns out.
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Old 08-09-2020, 08:46 AM   #3
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I have a similar setup - 2500+30í AS.

I towed with the equalizer 10k for about 5,000 miles (had an equalizer on my 25í and SUV and towed that about 25,000 miles before we upgraded trailer and tow vehicle)

Honestly with the 3500 you donít need any Weight distribution, only sway control. The problem with the equalizer is that you must apply a good amount of tension to the spring arms to get sway control. In doing so the equalizer in particular absolutely does transfer more shock to the trailer when used with a 2500/3500 tow vehicle and stiffly spring rear end. It is not forgiving like with an SUV with softer rear springs.

I ended up moving to the ProPride with 14k bars mainly for 2 reasons:

1. Improved sway control via a projected pivot point mechanical design - safety. There is no doubt this makes for a more stable train after towing with each.

2. Tapered spring bars that can be adjusted independently of sway control / less shock transferred to the trailer

At a minimum you should downgrade that equalizer to a 12k with the classic and itís heavy tongue. With your particular setup you should really consider a different hitch altogether, one with tapered bars at a minimum.
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Old 08-09-2020, 09:04 AM   #4
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I don't think you can simply replace the bars. The bigger ones are not square, but rectangular.
I'd call Equalizer and ask the experts.
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Old 08-09-2020, 04:12 PM   #5
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Thank you both for the responses. I may just get the Propride. That was my plan originally (even prior to this issue). The adjustability sounds perfect.

Question - given that I don't really need weight distribution, would a sway bar/control system only work just as well? I ask because the Propride's are a 5 weeks out on shipping and I'm hoping to leave this week on a long trip. I can have the Propride shipped to me but I hate to put the stress on the trailer getting out there....I will also call equalizer as Mollysdad suggested to see if they have another short term option.

Thanks!
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Old 08-09-2020, 05:12 PM   #6
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I agree you'll get better performance and comfort from a more forgiving setup and as you speculated the trailer will have an easier time with less risk of damage as well. Good choice.
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Old 08-09-2020, 10:24 PM   #7
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You can add a friction sway bar independent of a weight distribution hitch. Your trailer you would need two of them. You will also need a new hitch to accompany that setup. They are a bit of a PITA reversing and such though.

If your plan was to get a propride I would continue down that road. Nothing beatís Ďem and youíll be glad you did. I would wait and use your equalizer with a light amount of pitch / tension in the mean time.
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Old 08-09-2020, 11:11 PM   #8
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I would go with option B if possible, but you'll likely need to do C.

You got a beast of a truck to have high performance towing. There's no reason to be overcompensating for what the truck should already do very well. Including no reason to get a propride hitch. PPP type hitches have their compromises in usability, length, backing performance, etc.

I would replace your 16k equalizer with a mild easy to use WD hitch. Perhaps a 1000lb equalizer as they are exceedingly easy to setup and use. Use minimal WD tension to keep things flexible.
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Old 08-10-2020, 05:46 AM   #9
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Even the 3500 would benefit from modest weight redistribution in addition to sway control recommended. Ride comfort handling and cornering will all improve slightly so I'd suggest you stick with the existing hitch before doing without. It would be nice if you're able to swap out bars but it's not clear from the website.
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Old 08-10-2020, 10:20 AM   #10
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I called this morning. They said swapping bars for the 16k was not possible due to differences in the head on that specific model. I have feeling (entirely ungrounded to be clear) that some workaround may be possible but I don't want to experiment with shipping massively heavy bars back and forth.

The person also said there was very little difference in stiffness between the 12k, 14k and 16k setups (there IS a clear difference in the 10k he said but they wouldn't recommend that for a 10k GWR trailer). He also said this is a perfect setup for my 1 Ton and Airstream. So take that for what its worth....

My next option I am considering before I go wholesale to Propride (which I can't get for 5+ weeks anyway) is a Gen-Y torsion hitch. After MANY hours of searching last night, it looks like a few people have gone that route with good success. I unfortunately can do the shocker or air safe hitches as they simply don't have enough drop on them. I would love any feedback/thoughts on the Gen-Y hitch!

Thanks again
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Old 08-10-2020, 10:58 AM   #11
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The Airsafe and Gen-Y will take the intensity and harshness out of the system. They are effective at their purpose of smoothing things out but I can't say it is a good approach to keep adding more stuff to address stiffer than ideal tension bars.

If you avoid excessively rough roads and large deep swales the 1,600 lb bars won't be terrible. I'd advise you use them for the trip and then decide on a permanent plan.
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