Anti-sway Bar - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-20-2014, 07:33 AM   #1
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Name: Judi
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Anti-sway Bar

I am getting ready to go back on road with my 16' scamp towed by Subaru forester. As I ran into many days of 40-60 Mph winds on my 4500 lie odyssey last autumn and had extreme difficulty with swaying, I am resolved to buy an anti-sway bar. Any thoughts? My trailer is sitting a bit heavy in the hitch but having tried both of the ball heights available I chose to sit heavy rather than ride high. I have 5 inch ht I think. I always put all weight in rear of trailer and ride with mostly empty black water but sway continued throughout trip. PS I never go above 55 MPH and often drive 45-50 MPH. STILL SWAY VERY OFTEN. Thanks for any suggestions as I am taking trailer I to local trailer guy soon and I may need to buy that sway bar online instead of from him.
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Old 03-20-2014, 08:16 AM   #2
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Good day Judi. Your Forester can work well as a tow vehicle but it needs to be set up optimally. You have a very serious problem with your set up and I would urge you not to tow anymore until it is resolved.

Have you had your rig on a weigh scale to see how the weights and loading are working out? Can you post some pics of your rig so we can see how it looks? You may need many other adjustments or mods as well as a sway bar.
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Old 03-20-2014, 08:36 AM   #3
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Will have to wait a week or two to post tie with trailer as I am getting tow car maintenanced hd trailer is parked. I have 5 photos from last autumn and weight looks good and even, even on the one on steep incline downward. What do you think?

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Old 03-20-2014, 08:48 AM   #4
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Back in the 60's my dad had an RV dealership. He sold and set up many 2,000lb, 16' TT's. Most were connected to full size cars and used a WDH. The hitch/receiver on the cars were all custom installs. They towed great.

Today we have a mid size car and tow a trailer that weighs much more than your Scamp. It tows great, and have never experienced a hint of sway in the 7 years of towing it. Like my dad's combo's from the 60's we use a custom built receiver and have a WDH installed.
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Old 03-20-2014, 09:01 AM   #5
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In this case, pictures aren't worth any words.

Moving stuff to tow level IS NOT the way to set up the trailer, in fact, it invites the very problem you describe.

Your comment about packing weight in the back of the trailer suggests the cause of sway, not to mention the "Not Recommended" practice of driving with 40-60 MPH cross winds.

And it sounds like you don't have real data about your trailers weight situation.

As mentioned, you MUST get your trailer weighed, both axle weight as well as tongue weight, before you start adding parts without understanding the problem.

Let us know what you find. My $.50 sez that you are over the Suburu's tow limit or very light on the tongue, possibly both.
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Old 03-20-2014, 09:02 AM   #6
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My tow outweighs scamp and nice to know others are towing with mid sized. Still not sure what antis way to buy with all that?
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Old 03-20-2014, 09:06 AM   #7
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Not over tow limit so you owe me $50. Limit is well above my trailer weight ad I have no AC or tv or other things for camping that I consider non camping. But I will take your advice and go have trailer weighed. I travel very very light and I am alone with only my Mac air and iPad for company in writing my books.
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Old 03-20-2014, 09:07 AM   #8
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Don't buy anything until you can identify the problem.
A bandaid won't fix an arterial problem.....
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Old 03-20-2014, 09:17 AM   #9
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Come on... read the bet... It sez "OR". Give us some actual trailer weight numbers and a year and model of your Forester. WAG's don't count. The bet is still on.....

Some Foresters have tow limits below 1500 lbs. I believe, and a few are rated at "Do Not Tow" (2012 4 cylinder with CVT transmission)

The fact that you think you are light on weight and still pack stuff in the back of the trailer to reduce tongue weight points directly to a cause of a sway problem.
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:08 AM   #10
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While the original post is light on some specs, I am interested to see that nobody has ventured into the sway-bar pros and cons. Let's assume that the TV can handle 2,000 lbs. Let's also assume that the trailer is 1,500 lb's loaded with 150 lbs of tongue weight. Would the sway-bar help? What would be the disadvantages? I ask because I am considering a sway bar with something close to the above scenario.
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:17 AM   #11
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Now I've towed my ParkLiner 3 times with my Nissan Frontier v6, the last time it was pretty windy out and when i caught it on the side I felt the trailer move a bit, so I'm going to use my anti sway bar if its going to be windy out...cant hurt to go with safety. On a non overly blusty day packed the same way it tow's fine.
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:18 AM   #12
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Me thinks that no one has ventured into the issue of a sway bar because a sway bar/sway control is not the correct or safe way to correct what sounds like a weight and balance problem.

You have described the text-book trailer situation and, in as much as no one is towing a textbook trailer in this thread it's moot.

For starters, real world weights for 16' Scamps start at 2500 lbs, already over the limit for many (if not all) Subaru Foresters. And that the OP states that she is loading it at the back to keep it level is as about as big a red flag that can be raised for a problem with sway.

There are several threads dealing with the pros and cons of sway controls in the files, but one should never be used to compensate for weight and balance issues.
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:18 AM   #13
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Thanks. Appreciate this post. I've checked all weights including towing requirements last year so do not want to go there. I will weight trailer again and know tow allowances of my 'tv'. I am going to talk with local Rv guys and have them look at my set up. I may decide it's simply me. I did go places and situations I would not normally with those 50-60 mph wInd warnings, common out west on I-80, having a time deadline at that point. I may back off here as I am finding the discussion a bit off putting. Thanks for all the suggestions everyone.
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:22 AM   #14
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Sure anti sway bars are an option and in many cases will help by firming up the lateral movements between TV and trailer but it does nothing for the issue of the front of the TV being lighter than normal.
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