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Old 08-03-2021, 07:35 AM   #1
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Hensley give up the ghost

1999 vintage, 2011 rebuilt....done!
Yesterday, just before leaving on a trip with the gkids, I heard a loud band while pulling out of the driveway.
I'm just glad it happened there and not on the road!
A 3 hour delay while swapping in my reese backup hitch and we were off.

Spoke to Sean last evening and my new propride will be on my porch when I get home!Click image for larger version

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Old 08-03-2021, 10:11 AM   #2
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Ouch.

Any more detail pics of the offending components?

I'm need sympathy today, it's timing belt job day on the VW TDI at 440K. Good thing it's cooled off a few and its raining.
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Old 08-03-2021, 11:08 AM   #3
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Ouch.

Any more detail pics of the offending components?

I'm need sympathy today, it's timing belt job day on the VW TDI at 440K. Good thing it's cooled off a few and its raining.
I'll post more pics when I get home. I was in a hurry to get on the road.
The welds failed on the lower head pockets where the spring bar bushings are inserted. Both pockets failed and the hitch almost fell to the ground. I knew it was trash and I was completely blocking the street so I very slowly pulled around to the side of the house. By the time I go there, one strut was broken, as the ability for the head to swing was compromised.
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Old 08-03-2021, 11:09 AM   #4
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Sean said this hitch dates back to his tenure at Hensley, and this weld failure was pretty common.
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Old 08-04-2021, 06:52 AM   #5
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Looks like very poor weld penetration to me. Click image for larger version

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Old 08-04-2021, 09:59 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dznf0g View Post
1999 vintage, 2011 rebuilt....done!
Yesterday, just before leaving on a trip with the gkids, I heard a loud band while pulling out of the driveway.
I'm just glad it happened there and not on the road!
A 3 hour delay while swapping in my reese backup hitch and we were off.

Spoke to Sean last evening and my new propride will be on my porch when I get home!Attachment 400949

Is the failed hitch in the pics a Hensley or is it a ProPride? Doesn’t look like the current Hensleys. Out of curiosity, how old is that hitch and did you buy new or was it rebuilt at time of purchase?

Glad it didn’t give up the ghost on the road and that you were not in a stranded or worse situation.

Safe travels
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Old 08-04-2021, 10:03 AM   #7
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Hi

Wow !!

The good news is that you very much won the lottery in this case. I would *not* want to see this happen at speed...... yikes !!!!

How long has the hitch been in service?

Bob
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Old 08-04-2021, 10:13 AM   #8
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The OP said it was a 1999 vintage unit rebuilt in 2011. Depending on what it was attached to over the years, the unit could have been at it’s limits. We had a 1,175 pound tongue weight on our 2013 25FB versus the Hensley Arrow 1,200 rating. Probably not a great idea to be at max capacity in both load and then angular stress doing the weight distribution thing.

We replaced our 2012 vintage Hensley for a new ProPride on our 23D a few weeks ago. Got the new style arm jacks and those are great. The PPP is rated for 1,400 pounds.
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Old 08-04-2021, 11:56 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by switz View Post
The OP said it was a 1999 vintage unit rebuilt in 2011. Depending on what it was attached to over the years, the unit could have been at it’s limits. We had a 1,175 pound tongue weight on our 2013 25FB versus the Hensley Arrow 1,200 rating. Probably not a great idea to be at max capacity in both load and then angular stress doing the weight distribution thing.

We replaced our 2012 vintage Hensley for a new ProPride on our 23D a few weeks ago. Got the new style arm jacks and those are great. The PPP is rated for 1,400 pounds.
Hi

Running continuously ( = in service ) since 1999 would indeed put it into the "well used" category. Sitting on the shelf somewhere for 15 out of those years would be a very different thing.

Bob
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Old 08-04-2021, 12:03 PM   #10
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Likely repairable too. I have a Reese’s setup that is embarrassingly old but it works just fine.
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Old 08-04-2021, 12:36 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 369goose View Post
Is the failed hitch in the pics a Hensley or is it a ProPride? Doesn’t look like the current Hensleys. Out of curiosity, how old is that hitch and did you buy new or was it rebuilt at time of purchase?



Glad it didn’t give up the ghost on the road and that you were not in a stranded or worse situation.



Safe travels
Hensley, 1999 to 2002 vintage, bought used in 2011, rebuilt, sandblasted, and painted to match AS frame.
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Old 08-04-2021, 12:38 PM   #12
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Hi

Wow !!

The good news is that you very much won the lottery in this case. I would *not* want to see this happen at speed...... yikes !!!!

How long has the hitch been in service?

Bob
Unknown miles from 1999 to 2011, b iui t it was sun baked for sure. I've put 60k miles on since complete overhaul in 2011.
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Old 08-04-2021, 12:39 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by switz View Post
The OP said it was a 1999 vintage unit rebuilt in 2011. Depending on what it was attached to over the years, the unit could have been at it’s limits. We had a 1,175 pound tongue weight on our 2013 25FB versus the Hensley Arrow 1,200 rating. Probably not a great idea to be at max capacity in both load and then angular stress doing the weight distribution thing.

We replaced our 2012 vintage Hensley for a new ProPride on our 23D a few weeks ago. Got the new style arm jacks and those are great. The PPP is rated for 1,400 pounds.
30 classic, 2007. 980# TW at ball pocket. 1K bars on the Haha
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Old 08-04-2021, 12:40 PM   #14
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Likely repairable too. I have a Reese’s setup that is embarrassingly old but it works just fine.
No, thanks. It caused a considerable amount of damage to itself when it fell hard. Time to move on to a propride. It shipped today

I will scavenge useable parts and pieces to sell/give. Best piece for sale will be a tilt and height adjustable propride stinger "built for Hensley hitch ". Sean made a few of them in the past. More rare than Hen's teeth.
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Old 08-04-2021, 02:15 PM   #15
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Greetings from the Road in Vermont

We have had our Hensley (#8332) since 2005. We bought it new, and have used it extensively on our three Airstreams over the past 16 years. We have logged over 2,200 nights in our Airstreams, and have towed them almost 200,000 miles.

Our Hensley has crapped out on us twice. The first time was in 2013. We were camped in Moses Lake, Washington. We went to hook up and the bearings from the Hensley fell out on the ground. Hensley sent a rebuilt head, but we were down for about a week, waiting for the new head. We replaced the head ourselves and shipped the broken head back to Hensley.

Our next Hensley failure occurred in 2019. We were in Billings, Montana on our way to Alaska. We were at Sam's Club getting fuel when our Hensley locked up. It was locked up to one side and would not release. We called Hensley. After reviewing photos, they decided that it the head had locked up internally. We were able to limp to and get a campsite at the Billings KOA where we waited for a week to receive another rebuilt head from Hensley in Michigan. Again, we did the installation ourselves, and continued to Alaska.

The rebuilt unit that we put on in 2019 is already beginning to look weather worn. We have recently been considering replacing our Hensley with a brand new unit. The question is do I get a new Hensley, or do I make the switch to ProPride?

I would appreciate opinions on my dilemma.

Brian
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Old 08-04-2021, 02:25 PM   #16
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We have had our Hensley (#8332) since 2005. We bought it new, and have used it extensively on our three Airstreams over the past 16 years. We have logged over 2,200 nights in our Airstreams, and have towed them almost 200,000 miles.



Our Hensley has crapped out on us twice. The first time was in 2013. We were camped in Moses Lake, Washington. We went to hook up and the bearings from the Hensley fell out on the ground. Hensley sent a rebuilt head, but we were down for about a week, waiting for the new head. We replaced the head ourselves and shipped the broken head back to Hensley.



Our next Hensley failure occurred in 2019. We were in Billings, Montana on our way to Alaska. We were at Sam's Club getting fuel when our Hensley locked up. It was locked up to one side and would not release. We called Hensley. After reviewing photos, they decided that it the head had locked up internally. We were able to limp to and get a campsite at the Billings KOA where we waited for a week to receive another rebuilt head from Hensley in Michigan. Again, we did the installation ourselves, and continued to Alaska.



The rebuilt unit that we put on in 2019 is already beginning to look weather worn. We have recently been considering replacing our Hensley with a brand new unit. The question is do I get a new Hensley, or do I make the switch to ProPride?



I would appreciate opinions on my dilemma.



Brian
Brian,
It has long been my opinion that PP is a better unit. I knew the day would come, since I think I have 15 to 20 more years of trailering in me, and I am racking a lot more miles since I retired 2 years ago. As such, I have been following PP and HAHA threads here and elsewhere, for many years.
Besides engineering improvements with the pp over the haha, overall, the issues are less with pp, and sean takes care very well.
In addition, pp now uses robotic welding, so none of the questionable welds like I see in my haha.
For me, there was zero angst in choosing pp.
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Old 08-04-2021, 02:46 PM   #17
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Hensley give up the ghost

The Propride is a heavily built pivot point projection hitch system with, IMHO, stronger parts and bearings than the older design Hensley Manufacturing one in this thread. The support Sean provides is also outstanding. The installation does not require drilling any holes, and I flat won’t tow anything without one.

Just got back from an 8,000+ mile trip through all kinds of terrain, traffic, and weather including a few ‘slam hard on all the brakes and pray’ incidents that the hitch saved our butts during. Admittedly my tow vehicle is a touch light, but within its ratings. The Propride makes it practical.

I did add a home brew power adjustment system to the WD jacks. Since I’m the local head of the ‘Department of Overkill Engineering’ i need to do such things. Bottom line, this makes it easy and quick for a certified old Phart to crank up the WD to the correct levels. Thanks to Barry for the improvements!

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Old 08-05-2021, 08:12 AM   #18
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I guess my haha is getting to be of the age as well. One feature I like is being able to use a drill and 3/4 socket to set the jacks. Can you do that with the ppp as well?

Pat
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Old 08-05-2021, 08:20 AM   #19
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I guess my haha is getting to be of the age as well. One feature I like is being able to use a drill and 3/4 socket to set the jacks. Can you do that with the ppp as well?

Pat
Yes
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Old 08-05-2021, 09:17 AM   #20
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I guess my haha is getting to be of the age as well. One feature I like is being able to use a drill and 3/4 socket to set the jacks. Can you do that with the ppp as well?

Pat
Most definitely....and with the direct-drive V2 jacks, you don't even have to be gentle with the drill motor anymore...no more levers and gears and shear pins!
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