Before I try this? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-19-2006, 08:59 PM   #1
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Name: Alan
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My Surfside has a standard jack with a removable wheel on it. I has about 12" of vertical travel but usually (depending on how even or uneven the parking spot) I have difficulty getting the stabilizer stands under the back. Then I have difficulty getting the wheel off the jack. If i really want the wheel off I have to run the trailer wheels up on wedge shaped blocks in order to have sufficient clearance to remove the wheel. Getting it up on the blocks is tricky and hard on the back muscles.

I was wondering if there is any reason not to raise the mounting point for the whole jack on the tongue. Looks like a 1.5" - 2" stack of washers between the tongue's plate and the flange of the jack would raise it enough to make it easy to remove the jack wheel. Any reason not to do this? Anyone tried it? Thoughts? Advice?
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Old 04-19-2006, 09:38 PM   #2
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The first thing I do is throw the wheel away.I find them nothing but trouble.Anyway thats my feelings .
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Old 04-19-2006, 09:46 PM   #3
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Hi Alan; how badly do you really need that wheel on the jack?

My old Trillium that we owned for 13 years, and the Casita for the last 2 years never had the wheel on them the whole time I owned them. I just found the wheel an extra part that was never really needed. I know some people use the wheel to jockey the trailer into a real tight storage space when on reasonably flat hard surfaces.

Without the wheel you can drop the nose further to make it easier to swing down the rear stabilisers and then crank it back up to level it, and on occaision if there is enough down slope at the front end of a campsite you will have to get creative with blocks under the rear of the frame because there is no way those jacks are going to come down.

Try and get creative with wedging your trailer, save your back so you can enjoy the vacation!!! I always carry a small hydraulic bottle jack, it's amazing what you can do with that.

My tricks for levelling

#1 level the trailer side to side with blocks under the low wheel before you ever worry about anything else.

#2 Chock the wheels (both sides, front and rear of the tire), jack up the trailer enough to disconnect from the tow vehicle and pull the TV forward at least a couple of feet.

#3 Now do your "drop the legs" and level front to back, and go about the rest of the campsite set up.

Hope you are planning on going to the Ontario Bolerama the first week of July.
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Old 04-19-2006, 10:42 PM   #4
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Name: Alan
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Hi Alan; how badly do you really need that wheel on the jack?

My old Trillium that we owned for 13 years, and the Casita for the last 2 years never had the wheel on them the whole time I owned them. I just found the wheel an extra part that was never really needed. I know some people use the wheel to jockey the trailer into a real tight storage space when on reasonably flat hard surfaces.
That's it. I do need the wheel to get the trailer parked in a very tight spot where it is stored at home and in a friends barn in winter. There isn't enough room to use the tow vehicle for parking because of laneway fences etc. So I have to unhook from the tow vehicle and navigate by muscle power. There's no real problem to get the trailer into the correct position (longitude and latitude)with the jack wheel on - but the height is the problem. So I thought it would be an easy solution to raise the jack a couple of inches using a spacer such as a stack of washers or short pieces of pipe or ...
That way I should have no problem lowering the front to get my stands under the rear then raise the front high enough to put stands under the front and remove the wheel.

I can't see any problem with my idea as a solution for my particular parking problem at home and from time to time elsewhere. However I've suffered from lack of foresight in the past. Before making the change, I thought i would ask about the experience of others to avoid the possibility of unforseen /unintended consequences. In the end I suppose the modification is completely reversible if there is a problem with it.
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Old 04-19-2006, 10:44 PM   #5
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Oh and Charlie _ I'm going to try very hard to get to Ontario Bolerama this year- thanks for asking.
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Old 04-20-2006, 12:14 AM   #6
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Hi Alan, I wouldn`t hesitate to use tubing or some similar spacer....just make sure the ends are as square as you can make them and the same length, preferably in a lathe if possible......the only time there is load on it is when you are parked.....so should work out quite nicely.....you could even get them tacked onto the tongue frame to keep them in place better......you could get away by using a piece of tubing large enough to encompass all the three mounting holes....whatever works...even a piece of oak about 2" thick.....it isn`t going to go anywhere if it`s tight..... Benny
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Old 04-20-2006, 12:33 AM   #7
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Another possible solution. I purchased a trailer dolly which allows me to move the trailer around in the driveway. When I'm camping I don't have any trouble backing it into places, but the way my driveway is it's pretty tight to get it in and out where I want it parked. Northern Tool and many other places carry them.

Just a thought. A bit more money than spacers, but ...
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Old 04-20-2006, 01:10 AM   #8
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Adding the spacers won't affect the vertical strength, but might tend to make the jack more "rickety" when it is supporting the trailer at camp. The larger the spacers (dia), the better -- Best would be a singlecustom spacer with four holes in it for the bolts and body.
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Old 04-20-2006, 01:54 AM   #9
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Alan,

I had this exact same problem with mine. I back the trailer into my driveway at a downward slope. Unfortunately, the car remains level, the downslope only effects the trailer for the length I am backing before I run out of driveway. So,, the ball is way high, where the back of the trailer is low. The jack ran out of throw.

I am not about to lift it off the ball! (Well I did once, the first time I parked it..it took me a month to recover and I had to endure bad language from my doctor.. she said something about "stupid".)

I had the jack mounts raised 3" by having steel plates welded to the bottom of the jack mount and then to the frame of the trailer.

Imagine two cards stood on thier edge and on an angle. The top edge of the card is on the jack mount, the bottom on the frame. Looking from the top, it is kind of like this: " > "

I don't have a good picture of it, I will try to get one when I get home. I am out of town on a biz trip at the moment.

It was 25 bucks or so to have it done. Very sturdy, I have had no problems at all with it with stability.
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Old 04-20-2006, 02:04 AM   #10
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I Lied, here are a couple old highly enlarged pics of that area I had on this computer.

Sorry, they are not real good quality, but you get the idea.
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Old 04-20-2006, 07:19 AM   #11
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Byron, I have a dolly and it works sweet. I can move my 16 footer all around with it all by myself...and I'm a wimp.

Alan, once you get hooked up to the tug, can you pull the wheel off and leave it at home? That's what I'd do. Only reinstall when needed...and that sounds like that occurs only at non-camping times.
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Old 04-20-2006, 02:50 PM   #12
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Bryon and Donna, can you confirm the type of equipment you're using? I assume you mean a dolly like this...


Name:   dolly1.jpg
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My B1700 does not have a wheel - or anything else - on the jack leg. I just put a block of wood down to set the end of the jack leg (tube) onto. I doubt I could move the trailer in my gravel drive by hand even if I did have a wheel mounted, but it would be nice to able to move it a bit with my garden tractor.
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Old 04-20-2006, 02:56 PM   #13
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Quote:
Bryon and Donna, can you confirm the type of equipment you're using? I assume you mean a dolly like this...

Attachment 2332


My B1700 does not have a wheel - or anything else - on the jack leg. I just put a block of wood down to set the end of the jack leg (tube) onto. I doubt I could move the trailer in my gravel drive by hand even if I did have a wheel mounted, but it would be nice to able to move it a bit with my garden tractor.
That's it or close to it. Mine has pneumatic 10 1/2" tires. Works great. My wimppy wife can even move it aound with the trailer dolly. I would think you'd want the larger tires for moving on gravel.
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Old 04-20-2006, 03:03 PM   #14
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Yep, like that with pneumatic tires. I have a heavier than usual 16 footer and it rolls around nicely on asphalt. Tho, I don't think I could get it to budge on gravel. But, I'm a wimp.

Wimps UNITE!
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