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Old 03-09-2013, 09:51 AM   #1501
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Howie, Andersen has lawyers. I would suppose like all lawyers they advise "admit nothing". Even big car makers make running changes all the time without informing past customers. If a customer ask they will tell them, but they are not going to put a general call out to all past customers with notification of changes. Also keep in mind that Airstream business is just a very small part of their overall sales base. It seems to me that Andersen is actually being very good with listening to Airstream owners and is working very hard to modify their product to suit our needs. It seems to me that the Andersen may not be entirely suitable for users with the Attwood couplers that Airstream uses. I would not be surprised if eventually Andersen says that the system cannot be used with them and will not be libel for any problems or damages. It might help if folks with problems with their Attwood couplers let Airstream know about the issues they are having. Maybe Airstream and Andersen working together can come up with a workable solution.
Just my opinion, others may vary.
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:24 AM   #1502
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This type of Atwood coupler is not just used on A$'s. there are all sorts of trailers out there with this coupler.
I still have to keep asking. Why is there a difference when you compare the Atwood to the old Marvel and Franklin couplers. Neither of which has the "fin" as it is now known.
Why can't you find an Atwood coupler rated for 20K or 30K like the Marvel and Franklin couplers of days gone by. I have them on two of my trailers. Did Atwood buy these 2 companies over the years, then redesign the coupler trying to save on production cost?
I will say it again. In looking inside the Marvel and Franklin couplers. I can't see any way the pawl can get above the ball. As a matter of fact, if I forget to "unlatch" the pawl on either of these couplers and set the coupler on the ball. The full weight of the trailer will not move the pawl beyond a certain point and certainly won't allow the ball to enter the coupler socket. Perhaps it's the difference between the heavy duty couplers and the relative light duty coupler that Atwood builds today. I wish we could get answers.
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Old 03-09-2013, 02:05 PM   #1503
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It may be that the Atwood pawl failure is not unique to the Andersen system.

This post speaks to one that had a failure using a Reese Dual Cam. There is not an explanation as to how it failed but look at the bent pull rod and ware on the back side of the pawl on post #20

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...it-101833.html

If as we have assumed the Reese places a forward pressure on the ball I am at a lose to figure this one out.
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Old 03-09-2013, 02:39 PM   #1504
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Howie, that thread poster suggests lifting the tongue jack to take the pressure off his Reese w.d. bars, as we all do all the time, is more than the Atwood coupler can handle. So there is evidence the latch problem is not unique to the Andersen hitch.

I would think a good coupler design should take the force of the hitch ball in any direction. We have to be able to brake these things hard, lift them with the tongue jack, and go over uneven roadways without worry of breaking the hitch latch mechanism.

It has been said earlier here w.d. bars clamp the ball to the coupler. That's true, but are we getting an inferior coupler design because of it, I wonder. Or another way to put it on this particular discussion, is the coupler latch question an Andersen hitch problem, or an Atwood coupler problem revealed by an Andersen hitch as well other actions such as lifting the tongue with the coupler fastened to the ball? Does lightening or removing the clamping action of the w.d. bars allow this coupler to fail when other directional pressures are applied?

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Old 03-09-2013, 02:46 PM   #1505
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I don't think lifting the rig while the coupler is latched is the problem in either case. When lifting the rig the ball applies downward pressure on the pawl those holding it in the lower or coupled position.

I just can't envision how he bent that pull bar with a Reese but sure am open to an idea.
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Old 03-09-2013, 02:52 PM   #1506
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I tend to agree with Doug K. If you were towing a relatively heavy trailer without brakes. Would the Atwood coupler fail if you had to slam on the brakes of the TV hard? Even an empty trailer would exert extreme pressure in this case.
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Old 03-09-2013, 02:56 PM   #1507
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I'm trying to decide if I should consider a different hitch or a different coupler, although there are no signs of either one causing problems at the moment.

I'll stay the course with my Andersen for the time being. I would hate to have to go back to the bucking and bouncing of w.d. spring bars again based on problems I don't have, or the recommendation of someone with other interests at stake.

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Old 03-09-2013, 07:51 PM   #1508
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Andersen with a Marvel Coupler

Well, it looks like I can still get a Marvel coupler []Marvel 2-5/16" A-Frame Coupler. Now I will need to see if it will fit my 2002 and if Andersen feels there will not be a problem. For you guys who have or have used a Marvel, does it have a shark fin? The nice thing about this coupler, there is a repair kit unlike the Atwood.
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Old 03-10-2013, 07:03 AM   #1509
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What Now?

At least we now know that Andersen did use an Atwood 81911 coupler. If this coupler shows problems there might be a chance of return past the 30 days and other compensations as well. Nothing else left here but to contact them by email, phone or both and address the concerns we’ve had here. Prospective owners of this hitch must ask Andersen if their hitch will work with the Andersen hitch. This way maybe there’s recourse for sending back a prematurely released hitch and perhaps claim damages on trailer coupler damage and replacements that it may have caused as well as other problems as they come forth. So, guinea pigs we are for Andersen till a major problem arise and perhaps then they’ll act. Still hoping that they fabricate a coupler w/ their hitch like they do their 5th wheeler.
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Old 03-10-2013, 09:56 AM   #1510
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TG Twinkie View Post
This type of Atwood coupler is not just used on A$'s.
TG Twinkie,

If you are referring to the Thumb Latch 81912 Atwood 13,000#, AS did use one, it's on my '07 Classic Ltd. S/O. If I mis-read your comment, sorry. And the statement about a lack of a repair kit for the 81912, yup its is on Atwood documents we just ran thru it again recently about other coupling repair kits. If I can find my memory card adapter, I can post a pic if anyone wants it.

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Old 03-10-2013, 11:52 AM   #1511
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Your are correct, Atwood makes a repair kit for the coupler you have on your 2007. I have the same one on my 2002, but the Andersen ate the shark fin. If I replace it with the Atwood Andersen recommends and uses on their test trailers [http://www.etrailer.com/Trailer-Coup...od/81911.html], there is not a repair ket. I sent an email to Andersen asking if the Marvel coupler []Marvel 2-5/16" A-Frame Coupler would work. There is a repair kit for it and it appears it has a different latch system than the one I have now.
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Old 03-10-2013, 12:30 PM   #1512
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I'll refer to post #58 in this thread. It has a link to a PDF from Atwood and on the 2nd page 81912 is listed as not having a latch kit.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...d-91132-5.html

I looked up into the coupler and the Thumb Latch pivots front to back in a stout channel. When retracted, ball can be removed/inserted. With the latch forward the latch blocks the ball from decoupling, the latch only pivots to lock or release the ball in the frame/channel for the latch.

Been sorta watching this Andersen discussion very interesting.
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Old 03-10-2013, 01:13 PM   #1513
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Some have called those of us who are actually using the Andersen hitch, "guinea-pigs". I don't feel that way at all and looked up what I think we really are. Here is how the dictionary describes us, "An early adopter is a person who embraces new technology before most other people do." Did I expect to be purchasing a device with twenty year's development behind it? No. Am I getting superior performance than I received out of my previous three conventional weight distributing hitches? Yes. I don't mind terribly if I have to tinker a little bit. I won't even cry if I have to throw the thing in the trash and return to yesterday's hitches. That's the price that some of us are willing to pay.
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Old 03-10-2013, 01:39 PM   #1514
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Originally Posted by Rendrag View Post
Some have called those of us who are actually using the Andersen hitch, "guinea-pigs". I don't feel that way at all and looked up what I think we really are. Here is how the dictionary describes us, "An early adopter is a person who embraces new technology before most other people do." Did I expect to be purchasing a device with twenty year's development behind it? No. Am I getting superior performance than I received out of my previous three conventional weight distributing hitches? Yes. I don't mind terribly if I have to tinker a little bit. I won't even cry if I have to throw the thing in the trash and return to yesterday's hitches. That's the price that some of us are willing to pay.
You are absolutely right! And those who resist new technology are know as "Luddites", named after Edward/Ned Ludd who tried to preserve hand weaving instead of using the new-fangled looms. Had he and his followers succeeded we would be handwriting this stuff with a pencil on our computers, lol.
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Old 03-10-2013, 01:41 PM   #1515
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I own and use an Andersen WD hitch, although it's used with a small trailer and a small tow vehicle, and it's working great.

However, after reading all of the issues with couplers used with the Andersen and larger, heavier trailers, it is my opinion that using the Andersen with ANY coupler that has a pawl that slides DOWN to couple to the ball, is an accident waiting to happen.

By the way, this was my concern that I voiced in the very first part of this thread about the coupler not really being built to withstand the pressures and direction of pressure that is being applied to the coupler by the Andersen.

Hope you guys get it worked out, but at this point, I have my doubts it will ever happen with the Atwood and simular couplers.
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Old 03-10-2013, 05:36 PM   #1516
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New products come about usually from someone that has a vision about the future.

Rarely when a new product such as the Anderson, be absolutely perfecy. It may be in it's design and local testing.

But, when it hits the public, a whole new not page, but book shows up.

A good company, works as best they can, to resolve the issues that may appear.

It appears to me, at least from the majority of posters, that the Anderson may have some issues, but that they are also working to resolve them.

In today's markets, it's tough to find a new company that is will to work with it's customers.

Anderson, has demonstrated, that they are more than willing to do so.

Give them some room and a chance to correct whatever issue's may seem to be.

I don't believe they entered the RV market, just to horse around and waste money and talent.
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Old 03-11-2013, 11:26 AM   #1517
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I installed an Anderson WD anti sway hitch yesterday. The installation went pretty smooth.

I used the set screws for the frame brackets but found it just about impossible to tighten them as tight as the instructions recommend so I think I will use the "Optional Set Screw Installation" that is printed in the instructions (drill hole insert set screw).

After the installation I did a test tow. It towed GREAT! I even tried to make it sway and it was very stable. I had towed this trailer "naked" with just a ball and safety chains for about 50 miles on the Interstate just to get it home so I know what the difference feels like with and without the Anderson hitch. The truck and trailer now sit level too. I'm very satisfied with it.
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Old 03-11-2013, 12:09 PM   #1518
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sandhill3000;
Be very careful when drilling into the tongue. That you don't get into the wiring.
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Old 03-11-2013, 12:18 PM   #1519
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Atwood and Marvel

After spending an hour on the phone with a tech person at Atwood, I learned more about couplers than I ever wanted to know. However, he provided so much information that is helping to make my coupler/anderson decision.

I do not have an Atwood on my trailer. Like an idiot, I didn't look on the coupler to see the manufacturer. I took the word of AS that it was an Atwood. Well, it's a Marvel. Oh, by the way, Atwood bought Marvel. I have a Marvel 88010 and it has the shark fin design that has caused my problem with the Andersen eating the fin. All of the Atwood's have a different design and that is way Andersen has had success with the Atwood 81911/12. To see all the stats on couples, go to page 22 of the Atwood catalog [http://www.atwoodmobile.com/chassis-...-brochure.asp]. What I did find out is that none of the Atwood will fit my frame because the width of the Marvel 88010 at the rear is 10-3/8 where the Atwood 81911/12 is 10-7/8."

I guess I need to do more research, because the Andersen will not work with the Marvel.
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Old 03-11-2013, 12:47 PM   #1520
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"mrad" has stated he has seen a 1/2 displacement when using the Andersen but has not posted any pictures to support that. Since we are dealing with STEEL on STEEL between the ball and the jaws of the QB coupler that has a clearance measured in thousands when coupled I really have to question his comment.

Yes the clearance between the QB and Andersen is small and yes you might see contact if you have a combination of pieces both manufactured to larger limit of the tolerances. That contact conflict could be removed with slight grinding at the contact point.

You can see the clearance on my rig in the picture posted at #1474
Howie,
Not sure what you are trying to say. That I am lying about the movement??
I am not sure the exact amount of movement. I did notice the the QB was coming in contact with shank in front of the ball. I then ground probably an 1/8"-1/4" of the front of the quick bite. On our 3,500 + mile trip last summer, I noticed the QB was getting very close to touching again.
No one wants this hitch to work more than I do. I am not fond of having to back to an equalizer or dropping $2000 for a pull pride.

I also have some cat scale weights that are a bit concerning. With the Andersen hooked up, I am still getting about 5,900 lbs on my rear axle of my excursion. I have talked to others on the FTE forum who have excursion and a 1000+lbs of tongue weight and they are having the same difficulties.
TT will be coming out of winter storage soon, and I will be contacting Andersen for some help in setting it up properly. Hoping I will be able to remove another 200lbs off the rear axle.
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