A Frame Jack retracted length for Campster? - Fiberglass RV

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Old 09-28-2016, 04:20 PM   #1
Name: Mark
Trailer: Trails West Campster
Posts: 48
A Frame Jack retracted length for Campster?

I am looking for Trails West Campster A-Frame Jack projection / retracted height (inches below frame mount).

Shortest possible replacement I have seen are 5.4 and 5.5 inches, listed below, may not be short enough for my frame.

What is your projection / retracted height? (Especially Trails West Campster, Hunter, or Compact Jr,)

Ojai, CA
Campster #267
- - -
Bulldog Trailer Jack 155033
Topwind, 2,000 lbs., Travel: 15 in. Retracted: 5.4 in., Extended: 20.4 in.
- - -
1000lb Top Wind Jack - Raised Version
Jack stands 14-1/2" above mounting plate.
When retracted, tube extends 5-1/2" below mounting plate.
When extended, tube extends 19-1/2" below mounting plate.
1000lb A-Frame Tongue Jack - Raised Version
# # #

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Old 09-28-2016, 10:32 PM   #2
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Bobbie Mayer's Avatar
Name: Bobbie
Trailer: Trails West Campster 1970/Escape 15A
Posts: 2,994
I took mine off as it kept bottoming out. I use a swing-away tongue jack now (with a wheel).

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Old 09-29-2016, 12:00 AM   #3
Deadhead517's Avatar
Name: Alan & Barb
Trailer: 2005 Bigfoot 17.5G
Posts: 44
Tongue jack clearance

Could you 1) mount the jack using spacers between the mounting plate and tongue? Using oversized nuts as spacers would give you at least .5" and not be an issue for strength on a lightweight tongue. Or 2) take the jack to a weld shop and have the mounting plate reset lower on the tube to increase ground clearance? If the travel was insufficient after the modification you could incorporate a removable foot or wheel or other spacer like a cone. Doing that saves cranking time and effort. Good luck.
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Old 09-29-2016, 05:53 AM   #4
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Name: bob
Trailer: 1984 u-haul ct13; 1996 Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe; 1946 Modernistic teardrop
New York
Posts: 3,706
Buy an "Ultimate Jack". I'm looking for one myself, supposedly Tractor Supply has them so going there tomorrow
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Old 09-29-2016, 07:00 AM   #5
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Gilles's Avatar
Name: Gilles
Trailer: Bigfoot 15B17G, 1986, towed with Dodge Journey 2012, 3.6 L., 6 speeds.
Posts: 455
Originally Posted by mary and bob View Post
Buy an "Ultimate Jack". I'm looking for one myself, supposedly Tractor Supply has them so going there tomorrow
I have one "Ultimate Jack" on my Bigfoot, it's o.k..

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Old 09-29-2016, 10:52 AM   #6
Senior Member
Trailer: 2009 17 ft Casita Freedom Deluxe
Posts: 317
Mine protrudes 1 3/4" below the frame with the wheel removed. I don't travel with the wheel on because it has only about 4 to 5 " ground clearance and I'm sure it would bottom out. The Campster has had many modifications, including extending the toungue, so I don't know if it is original or not. It is an Atwood.

A prior owner also added a flip up jack but It doesn't retract enough for unhitching so it's not very useful except for taking the attached pictures. I may move it to my utility trailer.

1970 Trails West Campster
2008 Honda Ridgeline
Attached Thumbnails
1475167759807.jpg   1475167780115.jpg  

1475167798938.jpg   1475167848011.jpg  

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Old 09-29-2016, 12:35 PM   #7
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Civilguy's Avatar
Name: Mike
Trailer: 2012 Casita FD 17 - 2010 Audi Q5
Puget Sound, WA
Posts: 177
Originally Posted by Mark Godfrey View Post
I am looking for Trails West Campster A-Frame Jack projection / retracted height (inches below frame mount).

Shortest possible replacement I have seen are 5.4 and 5.5 inches, listed below, may not be short enough for my frame.


I had a teardrop trailer with a tongue jack that projected down too far. I considered adding washers or sleeves to remount it and move it upwards. I considered whether this might cause clearance issues when I opened the hatch of my then-tow-vehicle station wagon.

I'm quite good at this "thinking about things" stuff, but generally very slow on taking "actual action".

I then inadvertently initiated the modification process by scraping the tongue jack badly as I exited a driveway. This bent and deformed the lower couple inches of the tubing.

I subsequently used a Sawzall to remove about 2-1/2 inches and the problem was quickly resolved.

There is a short "V" that is formed into very bottom 1/2" of the outer tube which mates with a lengthwise "V" formed in the inner tubing and keeps it from spinning when you operate the crank. I was able to mash the outer tube with an old dull chisel to restore the mating and it worked fine. I still had plenty of range in terms of lifting the tongue of the hitch and leveling the trailer when setting up.

This approach may make up in economy what it lacks in elegance.
- "You can't believe everything you read on the Internet" - Abraham Lincoln -
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Old 09-29-2016, 01:32 PM   #8
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1980 18' Sunrader Motorhome and 1971 Trails West CampMite Campster
Posts: 774
Click image for larger version

Name:	tongue jack3.jpg
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Pro Series Round, A-Frame Jack - Topwind - 15" Lift - 2,000 lbs Pro Series Trailer Jack PS1401000303
This tongue jack from Etrailer is the one I was able to install on my Campster. It works perfectly for a fit and for a very minimal extension below the tongue.. However I don't know for sure that my tongue is still set up the way they came out of the factory so look at the photo for verification as compared to your Trails West Campster tongue.

This was the only tongue Jack I was able to find which could be used. That is because there is a bottom plate underneath and the outer tube that extends under the mounting plate had to be short enough not to extend thru the bottom plate. The hole in the lower plate is not large enough for the outer tube to extend on through and that area of the lower plate does not have sufficient edge margin to enlarge the hole any wider and still be structurally adequate. That hole was only large enough for the inner tube to slide through. When the inner tube is retracted it only extends a very short distance, an inch at most, below that lower plate on the tongue and does not catch or interfere while underway. Obviously I am not going to be using the full 15" of lift and while the jack it is tall it does not interfere with anything. As I said after extensive searching it was the only jack I found that could fit the circumstances of how my Campster tongue was put together. So while not ideal in height above the tongue it works great for very minimal extension below the tongue.

I have a wheel on it in this photo. I remove the wheel when hitched up to my tow vehicle. I only use the wheel while unhitched for ease in moving it by hand in the parking lot. You would not have enough clearance for travel with the wheel left in place while towing. But it is very simple to remove and install, a matter of under a minute once you have done it a couple of times. The wheel or bottom flat skid plates are a separate purchase from the jack.

Anyway, I hope this tongue jack will also work for you. I have found that Etrailer is a reliable company to work with.

Getting a tongue jack nstalled on my Campster was a challenge as someone had welded a secondary top plate on over the original and the holes in it did not line up with the threaded holes in the original plate and the old bolts had been cut off and left in those holes. So the old bolts had to be drilled out, bolt holes had to be enlarged and threaded for new bolts, the hole for the jack post had to be ground out to align it as well and the lower hole also ground to align it. A lot of hours of fussing but I got there in the end and it was worth it.

The spare tire is just sitting there for convenience at the moment to keep it out of my way. It is not mounted in that position for carrying it.
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Old 09-29-2016, 05:31 PM   #9
Name: Jeremy
Trailer: Compact Jr and Teardrop Trailer
Posts: 65
I also went with the Pro Series 1401000303 A-Frame Jack also on my Compact Jr.


My jack on my Compact Jr kept dragging going in and out of parking lots so i replaced it. Now I don't even have to fully retract it and I don have a problem hitting it any more.


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