Classic Scamp Failure - Page 10 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-12-2014, 09:43 PM   #127
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In my oldy but goody Scamp, the black water tank is ahead of the axle. Something more to consider if you're considering tongue weight.
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Old 02-12-2014, 09:51 PM   #128
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Ya got me.

I was kidding about leaving the house with
a full black tank.............LOL
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Old 02-12-2014, 09:55 PM   #129
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Originally Posted by carlkeigley View Post
Ya got me.

I was kidding about leaving the house with
a full black tank.............LOL
Good one Carl.... I was sleepy when I missed that!
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Old 02-13-2014, 07:08 AM   #130
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Black Tank, Trailer weight and tongue weight.

We virtually always drive with empty black and gray tanks and always a half tank of water. Occasionally we put a little water in our black tank for the "slosh cleaning effect".

Our axle 'scale' trailer weight is 2400 lbs. We try to scale weight every year and it's always right around 2400 lbs.

Our 200-215 lb tongue weight is on the light side compared to the traditional North American rule of thumb, though normal for Europeans. I know this is a concern for some. We have towed for a long time and many miles with our fiberglass trailers and have never felt any apparent "trailer lightness".

We do have an anti-sway bar, We purchased it for emergency situations and it has responded well in the two we've had. We towed the Casita 16 for a year without an anti-sway bar with no issues as well we initially towed our Scamp 16 without an anti-sway bar again with no problems.

In my opinion there's more to the sway issue than trailer and tongue weight. I believe weight distribution is very important. We attempt to keep our weight as close to the axle as possible. Clothes are at the ends of the trailer, canned goods, pots and pans, appliances are all near the axle.

We carry no heavy coolers inside our trailer and no real weight on our trailer's bumper. Our front hitch has only one battery and one propane tank.

Secondarily, anything heavy we carry in our tow vehicle is located between the tow vehicle's axles, like our Volcano Grill, and case of water. Lighter things go in the back of the tow vehicle like our aluminum chairs.

We do three other things to stiffen our setup.

We have drilled an additional hole in our ball mount to allow us to slide the ball mount 2-3" closer to the Honda's rear axle. This reduces the effect of tongue weight on the front axle. Think of it as trying to become a fifth wheel.

We tow with our tow vehicle tires at elevated pressures compared to normal ratings, (39 lbs versus the normal 26). This stiffens the rear tires reducing the tendency for the tow vehicle to roll onto it's rear tires side walls due to side forces. We also increase our front tires to 34 lbs.

We also use a hitch immobilizer that prevents the ball support from moving in the hitch receiver.

We do not drive with our anti-sway bar really tight, we want the sway bar to be able to slide and act as a brake, not something that locks the trailer in to a hard straight line connection. We never have had to release the sway bar to back up.

On top of this we try to be careful drivers and look ahead and behind to minimize rapid lane changes and motions. We avoid severe wind conditions, of course this is not always possible but we don't seek them. We never drive in snow or ice though we have found ourselves in the middle of a snow squall. We avoid wicked rain but again you can get caught in it.

Simply we seek the safest circumstances attempting to minimize situations that can harm us, others or our beloved Scamp. (I was surprised how sad we became when our Scamp had a frame problem a couple of weeks ago.)

I am not saying that there's anything wrong with 15% tongue weight, big tow vehicles, heavy coolers in trailers or ....... rather just describing what we do and works for us.
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Old 02-13-2014, 08:29 AM   #131
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Just curious Norm what does your hitch immobilizer look like?
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Old 02-13-2014, 08:38 AM   #132
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Here are some etrailer.com - Products quiet hitch
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Old 02-13-2014, 08:55 AM   #133
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I have the RM-061 as shown on the page Jim referenced.


Sent from my SCH-I535 using Fiberglass RV mobile app
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Old 02-13-2014, 08:57 AM   #134
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Thank you !
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Old 02-13-2014, 08:59 AM   #135
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Originally Posted by kdhanso View Post
Just curious Norm what does your hitch immobilizer look like?
this was the topic of a discussion a while ago. The one Jim references looks like a good one. Keep in mind you want to install it so it is pulling the ball mount down. I made mine, but there are several types available.
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Old 02-14-2014, 08:07 AM   #136
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Break Away Switch

Since our break away switch would not have activated with our frame failure, I am considering relocating the break away switch to the body of the trailer rather than it's location on the A Frame.

With our Scamp's frame failure the break away switch would have stayed with the tow vehicle and the trailer would have been a free moving disaster.

If the break away switch had been located on the trailer body (with a small battery) the brakes would have activated on failure.

Admittedly the more common failure is the ball coming off the hitch but the new location would cover both situations.

Just a thought....
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Old 02-14-2014, 03:13 PM   #137
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Norm said: "We also use a hitch immobilizer that prevents the ball support from moving in the hitch receiver."'
And that reminded me that I still want to fix the rattle of my 5th wheel hitch. It is the Reese Scamp hitch that is removable and held to two rails with four pins. It is not much of a problem when towing, but it rattles and squeaks when sightseeing without the Scamp. Does e-trailer have something to solve that problem and how does it work? Anybody else tried to solve this problem? Thanks in advance.
Paul
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Old 02-14-2014, 03:19 PM   #138
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Quote:
Originally Posted by honda03842 View Post
Since our break away switch would not have activated with our frame failure, I am considering relocating the break away switch to the body of the trailer rather than it's location on the A Frame.

With our Scamp's frame failure the break away switch would have stayed with the tow vehicle and the trailer would have been a free moving disaster.

If the break away switch had been located on the trailer body (with a small battery) the brakes would have activated on failure.

Admittedly the more common failure is the ball coming off the hitch but the new location would cover both situations.

Just a thought....


I'm thinkin' that a frame break back there would tear the brake wiring off the wheels at the same time, but that aside:

As I understand them, breakaway switches monitor the hitch-to-coupler connection, activating if they come apart. If you relocate the switch to the rear, how would it "know" if the trailer comes off the hitch?
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Old 02-14-2014, 03:50 PM   #139
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Francesca, Relocated to the trailer body it could monitor both the hitch/ball disconnecting and the body disconnecting. The wiring would need to be addressed but that's rather easy.

I seriously doubt our frame will re-fracture however it made me rethink the placement of the break away switch.
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Old 02-14-2014, 10:42 PM   #140
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It's impossible to protect against every single adverse event. For example, what if the trailer body came off the frame? What if a wheel falls off? What if the axle falls off? What if, what if.

Total separation of an A frame from the trailer body is a particularly rare event. For one thing, most of them (like yours) will partially separate before completely letting loose, and the partial separation should cause enough of a change in towing characteristics that a driver may be alerted.

I'm thinking back to the times when my Curt hitches broke. The break was on one side, not both sides, so the broken part sagged to the pavement and scraped loudly while the remaining side held, with plenty of time to stop safely.
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