Interesting experiment - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-15-2008, 08:11 PM   #15
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Old 02-16-2008, 02:58 PM   #16
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That's a lot of fun!

I wasn't able to get either link to run at work but both are aces at home.

The main thing I appreciate is how it separates out what they called yaw inertia from the simple relative hitch weight which is all I recall people talking about much. The second site I found very informative personally.


Mike
Remember the basics -- Get some weight on the tongue and pack all your heavy stuf as close to the axle as possible (both in horizontal and vertical distance).

One thing the simulator model didn't address directly is packing stuf high, like in upper cabinets or on roof -- What happens there is that in the first sway, the weight transfers in part to one wheel and then to the other as the sway goes in the opposite direction, so it's essentially affecting the side-to-side weight distribution.
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Old 02-17-2008, 09:28 AM   #17
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I have never towed a trailer that had sway bars attached so I can't address that. BUT. A driver who constantly see-saws back and forth on his steering wheel will automatically add sway into his package. While a driver who makes small corrections and does it smoothly adds very little or no sway. Our 13 footer sticks like it's been glued into place. We used to tow a 20 ft boat and it's trailer with no sway problems. Now I can see where you might need bars if your towing something larger as a minor adjustment of the wheel in the tow is multipled by the length of the trailer. OTOH it's sometimes kinda nice to introduce a little sway into the scheme of things when there's a car stuck to your back bumper so close you can't see him in your mirrors and with a bit of sway you not only get a glimps of him, you can back him off a bit.
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Old 02-19-2008, 11:04 PM   #18
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One thing to remember is the simulator is for a Euro Trailer !

The Tow Vehicles are not designed to carry 10% to 15% tongue weight, so the trailer is designed with the axle in the middle of the trailer and the load must be near the middle or it will sway.

Another factor is speed most Euro towing is done at speeds below 50 m.p.h. The Euro trailer will become unstable at speeds above 62 m.p.h.


Here in the states the axle is biased to the rear making an automatic 10% to 15% tongue weight and thus a less likely chance of sway even if loaded slightly wrong.

The chance of sway greatly increases when the load moves to far to the rear thus reducing the tongue weight below 10%.

Towing speeds here are much higher 55-75 m.p.h. Most trailers here with 15% tongue weight are inherently stable to speeds of 100 m.p.h.

The limiting factor is the 65 m.p.h. speed rating of Trailer Tires.

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Old 02-20-2008, 01:18 AM   #19
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Another factor is speed most Euro towing is done at speeds below 50 m.p.h. The Euro trailer will become unstable at speeds above 62 m.p.h.
On European motorways most rigs speed between 90 and 100 km/h (56 - 62 m.p.h.) despite the speed limit of 80 km (50 m.p.h.) in many countries. The limit in France is 130 km/h (80 m.p.h.), in Belgium 120 km/h (75 m.p.h.), in the Netherlands the limit will be increased to 90 km/u (56 m.p.h.), in Germany 80 km/h (50 m.p.h.), with permit 100 km/u (62 m.p.h.). In practice in Germany police likes rigs to speed at the speed of lorries, which is in practice 90 km/h (56 m.p.h.).
On non-motorways the max speed is the same as for single cars (in most cases 80 km/u (50 m.p.h.))
Every rig has its critical maximum speed above which the rigs will be unstable. That speed depends on the trailer, the tow vehicle, the load and the distribution of the load.
Most tow cars allow tongue weights from 50 to 75 kg (110 - 165 lb).
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Old 02-20-2008, 09:22 PM   #20
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I have never towed a trailer that had sway bars attached so I can't address that. BUT. A driver who constantly see-saws back and forth on his steering wheel will automatically add sway into his package. While a driver who makes small corrections and does it smoothly adds very little or no sway. Our 13 footer sticks like it's been glued into place. We used to tow a 20 ft boat and it's trailer with no sway problems. Now I can see where you might need bars if your towing something larger as a minor adjustment of the wheel in the tow is multipled by the length of the trailer. OTOH it's sometimes kinda nice to introduce a little sway into the scheme of things when there's a car stuck to your back bumper so close you can't see him in your mirrors and with a bit of sway you not only get a glimps of him, you can back him off a bit.
Jim
I am beginning to think pulling trailers is like driving Cadillacs.

Remember in the old days we had those huge boats that rode so smooth? People would be sitting around talking about how they could drive all day long at 90 mph and, "never even feel the road". That was what sold large cars. It was Detroit's charter to build cars that isolated the driver from that road. I

However in Europe they built cars that brought you intimately in contact with the road. Even the largest Mercedes didn't try to isolate the driver from the road. Their steering was quicker and their suspension far more firm than American cars.

Well if you remember those days like I do then maybe you can see why some people want sway bars when they don't need them. I have a sway bar and I don't need it but if I wanted to drive at higher speeds and isolate the natural trailing wiggle from my truck I could put it on and go Cadillacing down the road. People drive MUCH faster with sway bars because their purpose is to never feel like they are pulling a trailer and so the trailer never gives them tactile feedback... and this is very dangerous thinking IMO.

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Old 02-21-2008, 04:13 PM   #21
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One thing to remember is the simulator is for a Euro Trailer !
I disagree -- The simulator starts off with some tongue weight and one can move stuf around like a real trailer to affect the center of gravity and the tongue weight. One can make the tongue weight less than zero (like sticking a motorcycle on the back of an Egg) or get it close to zero or bring it up to Euro norms or bring it all the way up to North American norms.

Then one can accelerate up to various speeds and swerve to induce sway and see the results. One can be at Euro speeds or Calif speeds (55mph towing) or higher speeds.

One thing that might be different here is that we often use TVs with longer wheelbases, but for someone pulling with an Element or Outback or something like that, the model is quite valid (and a longer wheelbase, high-pressure LTs, etc. is only going to resist some sway).

Another thing MIGHT be the typical length of NA trailers, esp eggs, from ball to axle, compared to Euro trailers, but I doubt that would be too far off.

A more sophisticated version of the simulator would allow wheelbase, overhang, ball to axle and axle to rear bumper variables to be inserted.

All that said, however, it's a very good point to mention that getting higher and safer tongue weights on some vehicles exceeds the manf's recommend limits for TW -- That means that the TV and trailer are indeed unsuited for each other (unless a Weight Distributing Hitch can be applied to distribute the TW to the front axle and trailer axle).
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