Adding rear jacks - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-12-2013, 10:48 PM   #15
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I prefer the drop down jacks that come standard on the Scamp. I believe, from watching people with scissor jacks, that I can set up and stabilize faster. A quick pull and a jack drops down, foot on the pad and it's against the ground, do it twice and you're done with the rear. Go to front and bring the trailer up to level with the tongue jack and your done.
If done right you'll the same pressure on each rear corner all the time. With scissor jack it's very easy to apply uneven pressure thus twisting the frame.
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Old 04-13-2013, 12:03 AM   #16
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I used to use the "STABILIZER" jacks that came on the Scamp to level it side to side, then I would crank up the front tongue jack to level front to back, but on a previous posting, it was pointed out that the jacks were intended to only stabilize the trailer from bouncing when moving around inside, and to use them for leveling would cause the frame to bend/fracture since there is quite a lot of leverage on the frame so far back from the axle. Well, I finally had my frame fracture, so when I had the frame repaired & beefed up, I also changed out the axle, and added a heavy threaded pin through the frame just behind the wheel, so a scissors jack could be left in place or taken off when trail camping.
I also now use jack stands towards the front of the trailer frame just in front of the door and at the street side just under the front of the body, so the tongue jack is not handling all the weight, so the frame is under less stress again.
Hope this helps.
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Old 04-13-2013, 01:54 AM   #17
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Ok, being newer to some of this, let me ask a question. My ParkLiner has 2 rear stabilizer jacks and a handle to crank them down. My last trailer, my home built one, my bed was right on top of my axle so all I used was a pair of jack stands that I put out up front so the load wasn't being carrier on the tongue jack. I havent used my stabilizer jacks because the rear dinette stays down as a bed and I dont feel it really moveing much on me....but I have thought about adding something up front so the tongue isn't supporting the load all the time. Its not going to hurt my suspension if I don't use the rear stabilizers is it?
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Old 04-13-2013, 05:31 AM   #18
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For those that are considering bolting to the frame, check out this thread at the CasitaForum! http://www.casitaforum.com/invboard/...n-frame-drama/
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Old 04-13-2013, 07:34 AM   #19
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Interesting conversation. I always did the opposite. I dropped the trailer. Raised the front jack til it was level, dropped the rear jacks til they hit the ground and then just added a little tweak to set them. I never used them the other way around as that would stress the frame more IMO.
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Old 04-13-2013, 08:46 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
I prefer the drop down jacks that come standard on the Scamp. I believe, from watching people with scissor jacks, that I can set up and stabilize faster. A quick pull and a jack drops down, foot on the pad and it's against the ground, do it twice and you're done with the rear. Go to front and bring the trailer up to level with the tongue jack and your done.
If done right you'll the same pressure on each rear corner all the time. With scissor jack it's very easy to apply uneven pressure thus twisting the frame.
So what do you do on a slope? I always level the trailer, then put the jacks in to stabilize. I level the trailer by raising or lowering the tongue. My current jacks are the triangular stands with a big bolt that screws up or down (very slow) so that works fine.

I don't get how you are bringing the trailer up to level if the jack is already down.
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Old 04-13-2013, 09:19 AM   #21
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Mike is on the mark. The business of deploying drop down stabilizers in the rear and then leveling requires some interpretation and judgment. If you pull in and unhitch on reasonably level ground, it's very likely with the coupler above the ball that the trailer is nose up. Drop the Scamp-type stabilizers and go to the front and level the trailer, stabilizer foot wil just rise up in the air. AFTER leveling fore and aft, you go to the back, let the foot down to ground contact and you can snug them a bit with the provided steel round bar by inserting thru the holes in the shell and foot of the stabilizer and levering up one notch, perhaps two if the the drop down leg was not quite down. NO MORE THAN THAT NO HARM.

If the trailer (for any reason or condition) sits nose down more than a few degrees when you deploy the rear stabilizers, leveling with the tongue jack will remove weight from the tires and axle and place it on three points at the extreme ends of the frame (stabilizers and tongue jack). DON'T DO THIS!!!! Please remember this: the tongue jack is indeed a jack at one extreme end of the frame BUT with the pivot point of the trailer weight at the axle, two supporting points are IN THE MIDDLE of the frame span. The stabilizers are not called jacks and should not be used as such because in combination with the tongue jack they are capable of removing weight from the central point of support (wheels) and increasing the effective span of the frame.

Imagine a 1x6 board 10' long supported at the ends by two concrete blocks. Imagine you represent weight of the trailer and step up on the plank in the center. Plank bows downward or possibly cracks and breaks. Put a third concrete block under plank at center point and step up again. Doesn't deflect and doesn't break. Your experience with the plank duplicates what happens to your trailer frame when you remove weight from it's central pier of support. That image is the path to understanding.

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Old 04-13-2013, 09:28 AM   #22
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Some clever lad or lassie will now ask what we do when we jack a wheel off the ground to change a flat. Same conclusions apply. IF the jack is placed as close as possible to the axle, it simply replaces the wheel as a weight-bearing pier in the center of the frame span.

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Old 04-13-2013, 09:32 AM   #23
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My complete procedure for leveling and set up.
1. Position the trailer where I want it.
2. Us the BAL wheel leveler to level side to side. (I have bubble levels on the outside of the trailer along with using a round bubble level inside) The BAL wheel leveler also chocks one wheel.
3. Put chocks at the other wheel.
4. Disconnect from the tow vehicle and move it out of the way.
5. Lower the tongue with the tongue jack until the front of the trailer is about 1/2 bubble low.
6. Deploy the stabilizers with pad on the ground or on blocks if needed.
7. Raise the tongue with the tongue jack until the trailer is level front to back.

DONE... Simple and no undo stresses on the frame.
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Old 04-13-2013, 10:03 AM   #24
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. . . and other devices (scissor jacks, screw jackstands) should, despite their nominal function, be used for supporting weight rather than lifting it when deployed at bumper or frame ends.

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Old 04-13-2013, 10:14 AM   #25
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Someone (not his real name) once said: "Everything should be made as simple as possible but certainly no simpler." The problem with every procedure and protocol is that certain pre-conditions are always assumed, at least by he who develops the procedure. If you understand a general class of phenomena, you will learn to recognize special conditions which invalidate volumes of "jus do wat I tell ya" instructions and begin to develop your own method and sequence.

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Old 04-13-2013, 10:22 AM   #26
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Thanks, Byron, that's basically what I do though usually not with the BAL. I didn't see how anyone could be putting out the stabilizers first unless it was completely level to start with.
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Old 04-13-2013, 10:36 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobbie Mayer View Post
Thanks, Byron, that's basically what I do though usually not with the BAL. I didn't see how anyone could be putting out the stabilizers first unless it was completely level to start with.
I would do the same thing if completely level, the Bal wheel leveler would just put enough pressure on the wheel to keep everything in place. There's always just enough pressure on the stabilizers to stabilize the trailer. That is prevent it from rocking and bouncing when walking across the floor or turning over when in bed, etc. The vast bulk of the weight is on the wheels, hence leveling side to side by raising the low side wheel. That can be done with blocks of wood, lego leveling blocks, etc., or a BAL leveler.
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Old 04-13-2013, 10:56 AM   #28
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I have a BAL, but I mostly haven't needed to use it so don't take it if I know I won't need it. (I've used it in two places.) In the Campster the rear stabilizers do prevent the trailer from tipping backwards when you stand for more than a moment or two at the rear door so they take some weight but not a lot.
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