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Airstreamfan 03-23-2020 12:00 PM

2019 Ram 2500 4X4 cummins hitch questions
 
First of all, I want everyone to know 2 things.....1.I have read and read and read "Hitch" posts for about 3 weeks now. 2. This is NOT a "What is the best hitch" question. I've read those threads, and don't want this to turn into that.

So, here's my question(s): Specific to my TV- 2019 Ram 2500 crew cab short bed 4X4 Cummins .....tow capacity (from Ram) 19, 250 lbs.

My Airstream- 1993 29' Excella empty 5700 lbs. gross 6900 lbs.

I bought this 2 weeks ago. Drove it home 350 miles. First time Airstream owner. Noticed some sway when the big rigs rolled by. I've been towing my entire adult life, including boats, small rv/popup, and most frequently an 8 ton construction trailer loaded full of equipment. I'm a contractor. None of this compares to the wind sail of an RV.

For those of you with the same Ram 2500 diesel as me, what anti-sway hitch are you using, and how's it performing for you.

ProPride looks great, and sounds great, but if I knew I was going to have to buy a $3K hitch, I might not have bought my Airstream. I screwed up not researching that first.

I've looked at, and read about, Blue Ox, Reese, and Andersen, and am looking for actual user experiences for controlling sway.

I hope this question doesn't turn into a chest beating contest. Congratulations if you can afford a $150K Airstream and $3K hitch. I cannot. I bought a 30 year old RV to try and get my wife to camp with me. She went in a tent, and won't go again. I'm looking for a solution to THAT.

tjdonahoe 03-23-2020 12:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Airstreamfan (Post 2343800)
First of all, I want everyone to know 2 things.....1.I have read and read and read "Hitch" posts for about 3 weeks now. 2. This is NOT a "What is the best hitch" question. I've read those threads, and don't want this to turn into that.

So, here's my question(s): Specific to my TV- 2019 Ram 2500 crew cab short bed 4X4 Cummins .....tow capacity (from Ram) 19, 250 lbs.

My Airstream- 1993 29' Excella empty 5700 lbs. gross 6900 lbs.

I bought this 2 weeks ago. Drove it home 350 miles. First time Airstream owner. Noticed some sway when the big rigs rolled by. I've been towing my entire adult life, including boats, small rv/popup, and most frequently an 8 ton construction trailer loaded full of equipment. I'm a contractor. None of this compares to the wind sail of an RV.

For those of you with the same Ram 2500 diesel as me, what anti-sway hitch are you using, and how's it performing for you.

ProPride looks great, and sounds great, but if I knew I was going to have to buy a $3K hitch, I might not have bought my Airstream. I screwed up not researching that first.

I've looked at, and read about, Blue Ox, Reese, and Andersen, and am looking for actual user experiences for controlling sway.

I hope this question doesn't turn into a chest beating contest. Congratulations if you can afford a $150K Airstream and $3K hitch. I cannot. I bought a 30 year old RV to try and get my wife to camp with me. She went in a tent, and won't go again. I'm looking for a solution to THAT.

Reese duel cam....100,000 miles...no problem...love it...13 31’ 1000# on the tongue..

rmkrum 03-23-2020 12:18 PM

2019 Ram 2500 4X4 cummins hitch questions
 
Here is a “reasoned minimal solution”

You may be feeling a lack of directional control. First thing to do is use the “three pass CAT scale method” to check your axle loading. Search the forums for it.

The results of that will give you numbers to make decisions on what hitch setup you might need.

For a reasonable try, try adding a friction anti-sway bar to your current Weight Distribution (WD) hitch if you have one.

If you don’t have a WD hitch look into equalizer or the like. Your tow vehicle is more than capable of towing your trailer with the addition of a simpler cam-type anti-sway hitch.

I will note that I use a ProPride system, but I’m towing with a Toyota Tacoma right at the limits of what it’s capable of.

In your case, a ProPride would be superb, but it is probably severe overkill for your situation.

Unfortunately I can also tell you that this will attract a wide range of opinions both reasoned and not, that may or may not have any science behind them. Choose your ‘experts’ most carefully.

jeffmc306 03-23-2020 12:20 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Airstreamfan, no worries - you're among friends here. Yes, you'll get lots of opinions from which you can form your own opinions.

I don't think you need to limit the responses to RAM diesel only as the chassis is the same between gas and oil burner. Also, any 3/4 ton truck from Ford or GM will have similar qualities.

I have a 2019 RAM 2500 short box 4x4 (6.4 Hemi) and tow our 2019 27' Globetrotter (7600 max) with a Blue Ox SwayPro. I had a 2019 RAM 1500 but the payload wasn't enough. The RAM 2500 is the 3rd tow vehicle and 2nd trailer I've used the same Blue OX on but did move up to the 1500# bars because the loaded tongue weight is 1100# on the GT.

In all cases, the Blue Ox performed well, reducing sway even when passed by big rigs. The bars are curved and will flex providing "give" between the TV and trailer.

By the way, I did have to go to a Curt drop shank because the 2500 was that much taller than the 1500. I also chose to go to the 2.5" shank version to eliminate the need for the hitch adapter.

I think the Blue Ox would be a worthwhile and affordable solution for your situation.

All the best,
Jeff

RamRider 03-23-2020 12:31 PM

I do not have the 4x4 but last fall I purchased a Ram 2500 long bed and had to purchase a longer shank for our Blu Ox to get the nose of our AS down I have no issue with sway . I purchased the BluOx shank but the curt would be just as effective. Check with etrailer.com for recommendations. They will give you an honest evaluation

Airstreamfan 03-23-2020 12:49 PM

Thanks for the replies, guys.

Jeff, my only reasoning behind wanting specific Ram diesel replies is not to squelch other opinions, but because the weight of the diesel motor on the front axle of a Ram 2500 is much heavier than a gas engine, and this changes the dynamic of weight distribution. As you know, the 2500 is a great towing beast. I've owned 9 of them over the years, as I've been a self employed contractor for 31 years. The Cummins takes it to an entirely different awesome level for heavy towing and control. I noticed a HUGE difference between this Cummins powered 2500 and my previous gas HEMI 2500. Both really good, the Cummins gives me what I need to haul heavy for my equipment trailer.


I don't have enough Airstream experience to know anything else other than what I have.

Bill M. 03-23-2020 01:12 PM

Like Joe above I use the Reese Dual Cam with my 25’ Airstream and my 2500 Dodge 4x4 diesel. I use a 6” drop. 800 lb bars. I picked this hitch when I bought the truck in 2007 and have not seen a reason to try another hitch. Lots of miles on good and bad roads. Yes, I can “feel” trucks when they pass me. It is a small, one piece pull. I feel it in the truck a little without the trailer too. I do not do full FALR. Maybe a couple 100 lbs less. I have never pulled the trailer in the ball only or with another hitch so this is all I know. My trailer has 13 to 15 percent tongue weight. I think tongue weight is your friend so I do not load weight in the back.
I pull a 30 year old Airstream.

out of sight 03-23-2020 01:17 PM

I have the identical tow vehicle as you. I tow a FC 28 with 7600 GVW and tongue weight of about 12% without any sway control or weight distribution hitch. There is no noticeable sway even at high speeds. There may be something else going on with your trailer. First I would check your tire pressures. I have 80 PSI in my trailer and tow vehicle rear tires and 70 PSI in the fronts. Then I would check the tongue weight. If it is less than 8% then that may be the cause. The target should be 10%.

You are right about the diesel engine. The extra 1000 lbs in the front balances out the 1000 lb tongue weight in the rear, leaving me with a perfect front/rear weight distribution of 48/52. It handles like a charm.

I would not recommend a weight distribution hitch. Removing weight from the rear tires decreases the sidewall stiffness and makes it easier to jackknife a rig in a hard emergency turn. Your RAM's 6500 lb axle can handle the tongue weight with ease.

I would also not recommend a sway control hitch. Sway is not a problem as long as it is sufficiently damped and goes away after a few cycles. This is normal and nothing to worry about. Sway hitches all extend the distance from the tow vehicle rear axle to the hitch point and that will make the oversteer/jackknife problem worse. The Hensley hitch, while doing a good job on sway, does a bad job on oversteer and jackknife, and that, not sway, is what causes accidents. Furthermore, these hitches can be heavy (200 lbs) and it is not a good idea to add mass at the hitch point.

rmkrum 03-23-2020 01:19 PM

More of the same, tired old claims.

“Not an expert” is putting it mildly.

Al and Missy 03-23-2020 01:56 PM

I towed a 9100# Classic 30 slideout with first an Equalizer and now with a ProPride. I didn't buy the ProPride because I was dissatisfied with the anti-sway and/or weight distribution capabilities of the Equalizer. I bought it because I couldn't lift the heavy Equalizer head up into my taller Ram 2500 Cummins as compared to my F-150 and after I unhitch I can put the ProPride stinger back on the trailer until I'm ready to tow again.

I don't notice any difference in the anti-sway performance between the two hitches. With either hitch, when a big truck comes up behind me I get a slight push from its "bow wave" when he gets to the junction of my TV and TT that pushes the nose of the truck toward the left. It is barely noticeable, and there is no tendency to sway. The only time it is an issue is if I have lost my concentration for a moment and am close to the line between the lanes (or the truck is). I can't compare the panic stop capabilities of the two as I have only panic stopped with the ProPride, and that in a straight line. I would have no hesitation about using an Equalizer if I could just lift it.

If you decide you want the ProPride or Hensley, search the classifieds on here and Google used ones for sale. I got mine for around $1700 and had to rebuild it with about $150 worth of common parts (bearings and seals). Hensley will sell you a warranty on a used hitch, as well.

Al

SteveSueMac 03-23-2020 01:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by out of sight (Post 2343830)


I would not recommend a weight distribution hitch. Removing weight from the rear tires decreases the sidewall stiffness and makes it easier to jackknife a rig in a hard emergency turn.


(Insert sound of needle scratching across a record....)

Please explain how a WDH makes the rear axle of the tow vehicle lighter than it is when the tow vehicle is not hitched. Please also share the CAT scale tickets that demonstrate this phenomenon.

JDG 03-23-2020 06:37 PM

2018 RAM 2500 Mega Cab 4x4 with Cummins. I pull a 33 Classic with an Equalizer WDH. Never had any sway problems. It does pull better with full fresh water tank (54 gal). 80 psi in the tires on the Airstream and rear TV tires and 65 psi in front TV tires. As you know there are many variables in the equation and really, IMO, you are looking to be in the acceptable range every time you tow. But to be 100 % sure for each tow, you would have to do the calculations every time. No different then in aviation when you must figure weight & balance for each flight and be within the acceptable range each flight. Obviously, towing an Airstream isn’t as critical but the point is the numbers are constantly changing depending on the variables. Good luck in your search for what will work for you.

Airstreamfan 03-24-2020 08:12 AM

Thanks for the input, folks.

For the record, I'm personally unphased by suggestions that an anti-sway hitch won't benefit my situation, so no need to defend or attack that position. It's been done 1000 times, at least, in almost every thread I've read. I've made the decision to upgrade my hitch to some sort of sway control hitch, so we're all good. Just let that one go, if you could, so I don't have to wade through a sea of miserable posts to get to the information we all are trying to learn from.

Another question: Do all of these hitches remove quickly and easily from the TV? Reason I ask, is that traveling with my Airstream may become (hopefully) something we do a lot of, but I have 3 other trailers, with different hitch requirements, that won't be hitched using this hitch. 2 of them, my fishing boat and log splitter, tow with a 2" ball, and my equipment trailer is a pintle hook. I need to know that I won't have to perform minor mechanical surgery every time to get a different hitch on my truck.

Thanks.

out of sight 03-24-2020 08:21 AM

Since you don't need weight distribution with your rig you can get a friction sway damping device for about $50. Easy to use and effective.

out of sight 03-24-2020 09:25 AM

https://www.curtmfg.com/part/17200

JonDNC 03-24-2020 09:33 AM

I tow multiple things as well, use a blue ox for the airstream, from a hitch process you just swap the hitch assembly with your standard one. Takes 2 minutes max. I swap between the Blue Ox, a bike rack and a Weigh Safe multiball hitch.

KrazyKelleys 03-24-2020 10:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Airstreamfan (Post 2343800)
First of all, I want everyone to know 2 things.....1.I have read and read and read "Hitch" posts for about 3 weeks now. 2. This is NOT a "What is the best hitch" question. I've read those threads, and don't want this to turn into that.

So, here's my question(s): Specific to my TV- 2019 Ram 2500 crew cab short bed 4X4 Cummins .....tow capacity (from Ram) 19, 250 lbs.

My Airstream- 1993 29' Excella empty 5700 lbs. gross 6900 lbs.

I bought this 2 weeks ago. Drove it home 350 miles. First time Airstream owner. Noticed some sway when the big rigs rolled by. I've been towing my entire adult life, including boats, small rv/popup, and most frequently an 8 ton construction trailer loaded full of equipment. I'm a contractor. None of this compares to the wind sail of an RV.

For those of you with the same Ram 2500 diesel as me, what anti-sway hitch are you using, and how's it performing for you.

ProPride looks great, and sounds great, but if I knew I was going to have to buy a $3K hitch, I might not have bought my Airstream. I screwed up not researching that first.

I've looked at, and read about, Blue Ox, Reese, and Andersen, and am looking for actual user experiences for controlling sway.

I hope this question doesn't turn into a chest beating contest. Congratulations if you can afford a $150K Airstream and $3K hitch. I cannot. I bought a 30 year old RV to try and get my wife to camp with me. She went in a tent, and won't go again. I'm looking for a solution to THAT.


I have a 2018 Ram 2500 Crew 4x4 Cummins short bed.

I have used a Hensley Arrow in the past with the following rig:
2007 Silverado Duramax Crew 4x4 and 2007 Classic 34. It worked well together. Expensive hitch, but it got the job done.

Now: I tow a 2020 Globetrotter 25FBT w/ my 2018 Cummins. I don’t use anything. I tow it on the ball and it seems to work well for me. I’ve made a couple of 700 mile round trips and a 1400 mile round trip with that set up. I didn’t notice much trailer sway.

I’m in construction and tow a 25000lb rig all day with a 5500 Ram, so I’m pretty use to towing.

waninae39 03-24-2020 10:17 AM

I would recommend a weight distribution hitch. They are easy to setup and ensure the rig is balance with the load in your AS

I would also recommend a sway control hitch. We use the Resse model and are happy.

If you use both and notice zero issues, then you will be a happy camper. Both of these are like insurance. You pay for it and hope to have no claims

many trucks with solid axles are NOT the best tow vehicles as the shocks and balance parts are closer to the middle of the vehicle center line.
may SUV and vehicles with independent wheels are much better.
Ask Andy at CANAM RV. he found that the Porsche SUV and Corvette were great towing vehicles. The issue with the Corvettewas it was l too low to the ground and was hard to get into hilly areas.

he also found that many SUV like the Porsche, Audio and VW were very good and stable as they have properly engineered suspension with independent wheels. This is another reason to get the two aforementioned parts for your 3/4 tone vehicle

These are my personal views as someone who is happy with Sway and WD on my AS

wdkennedy 03-24-2020 10:23 AM

Level and good tires.
 
My TV 2015 Dodge Ram Mega Cab, Cummins. I had a certified welder place a second 2” receiver to the bottom of the factory receiver. This puts all my trailer tongues at the correct heights. I also added Firestone air bladders under the coil springs and this gives me ultimate adjustment for weights and heights. A level load between TV and trailer is very important. As is good quality tires all the way around. New BFGoodrich Commercial TA’s.

My trailers: 1973 Silver Streak 27’ tow without sway tamer add 20# to the Firestones
1992 Airstream 21’ Soverign Tow with & without Sway Tamer
2007 Airstream 27’ Classic FB Tow with & Without Equili-Zier .
I just towed the Classic without Equili-Zier and with 20# air in Firestones. It was OK but “just OK” I prefer with the Equili-Zier.

pianolaw 03-24-2020 10:41 AM

2017 Ram 2500 Limited Cummins Diesel. Equalizer hitch. Don’t feel a thing while towing a 2015 Int’l 27FB and absolutely no sway when passed by the big rigs. Wouldn’t tow without a WD hitch. I think the manual even recommends a WD hitch.


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