Advisibility of using weight distribution hitch: pros and cons - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-10-2013, 07:13 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post
It would be interesting to find out what revisions Escape made to the Trillium platform frame they started with- especially since Trillium Tom cautions against a wdh in the case of his units.

Is Escape on fatter channel maybe???

Francesca
I gotta say, Francesca. You really have me befuddled with all the talk you do of Escape being nothing more than a newer Trillium. There are definite design influences to be certain, but the Escape was built from the ground up. I have talked with Reace lots about this, and he has shared his start-up story at rallies, and you can rest assured that the frames are independently designed and built.

That said, I tow my Escape 19 with my Pilot, and do not use a WDH. Only on rough gravel uphills have I ever had a bit of an issue with slippage, though nothing that worried me at all. The later model Pilot ('09 and up) come equipped to tow with the hitch being standard, and nice stiff rear ends. I have the touring model that was just plug n' play.
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Old 01-10-2013, 07:28 PM   #30
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Obviously Reace at Escape feels comfortable having his clients use a WDH for towing their trailers; otherwise they would not sell WDH's as an option with a new Escape.
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Old 01-10-2013, 07:30 PM   #31
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I gotta say, Francesca. You really have me befuddled with all the talk you do of Escape being nothing more than a newer Trillium.




Since when have I said anything but that the Escape is based on the Trillium???

That's perfectly obvious to anyone that's ever seen them...is this considered to be some kind of a slander???

There's even a video out there featuring a fellow being interviewed who goes on at some length about going to the Escape factory and being shown through a gutted 4500 while Reace explained where he planned to put things etc...

If anyone's befuddled here, it sure isn't me!

We now return you to the actual topic of this thread, whatever that was...

Francesca
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:35 PM   #32
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Seems to me the use of a WDH is to correct a problem. Too much trailer behind too little TV.

If the given TV a Rav4 has a known soft rear end, the suspension is what needs to be addressed. Air bags seem a good choice.

If the trailer would put itself nose down and the TV nose up in normal operation it's not a good arrangement in the first place. As to the trailer nose diving on braking I would think electric trailer brakes and a good controller would address that better than a WDH and with no risk to the frame.

I suppose as Brian points out there may be wheel base configurations of TV and trailer where a WDH would be appropriate to better distribute the load of a trailer within the towing capacity of the TV.
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:48 PM   #33
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Really all we know to be true, is what our owner's manual or manufacturer tells us.
The use of any w/d set up is to enable a safer towing experience, if it is needed. It is not always needed except where the trailer and tug are not weight compatible. I went shopping at Colonial Airstream several years ago and was told they would not sell me an airstream without a w/d set up regardless of my tow vehicle. I thought that was a little condescending of the dealer and did not purchase one. Your tow vehicle and hitch determines what you can safely tow, not your trailer. My 7 in 4 thread can attest to that statement. That said, the w/d will make that combination a more enjoyable one if it is not.
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Old 01-10-2013, 09:44 PM   #34
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Seems to me the use of a WDH is to correct a problem. Too much trailer behind too little TV.
How about "too little rear axle capacity"?
What a WDH primarily does is redistribute load from the rear axle to the other axles.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RogerDat View Post
If the given TV a Rav4 has a known soft rear end, the suspension is what needs to be addressed. Air bags seem a good choice.
I agree that if (with the trailer, passengers, and cargo in the tug) the rear axle is still within its capacity - and the front to rear axle load distribution is suitable - then air-boosting the springs is a sound approach. That's what I did.

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If the trailer would put itself nose down ...
The nose up-or-down attitude can be set simply by changing the tow ball height (such as with a different or adjustable ball mount); a WDH isn't needed for this purpose.
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Old 01-11-2013, 01:03 PM   #35
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How about "too little rear axle capacity"?
What a WDH primarily does is redistribute load from the rear axle to the other axles.....

.....The nose up-or-down attitude can be set simply by changing the tow ball height (such as with a different or adjustable ball mount); a WDH isn't needed for this purpose.
Too little rear axle capacity is what makes the TV "too little TV" for "Too much trailer". I guess axle capacity would be more specific.

Ball height is not a solution if the trailer is nose down and the TV is nose up due to rear axle capacity.

If properly loaded trailer is pushing the rear of TV down too far for TV to ride level BUT trailer is still under the overall TV tow capacity then the ball height won't fix it.

You might get things level with rear suspension upgrade (air bags) or possibly with WD hitch. But the going with the hitch option I think requires some trusted expert advice given the conditions outlined above where by weight it should be OK but it's not.

One needs to consider the frame strength and axle distances you mentioned in prev. post to determine if WD hitch will solve problem in a safe manner or not.
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Old 01-11-2013, 01:11 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
With TrilliumRV making only a 13' model
Not to split hairs, but TrilliumRV makes a 15' 4500, (1500) as well as the 13' 1300. It was the 15' unit that Tom Young was commenting on. Kinda a moot point, since the coupler to axle length is the same on both.
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:23 PM   #37
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Seems to me the use of a WDH is to correct a problem. Too much trailer behind too little TV.
The WDH is a safety component.

It restores weight to the vehicles front axle to maintain steering stability. At the same time it reduces excess weight from the rear axle.

Depending on the design it provides a certain amount of stability by firming up the piviot point at the ball. It's all goodness provided the vehicle and trailer are able to deal with the stresses.

Our car/trailer combination uses a Reese. Wouldn't leave home without it.
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Old 01-11-2013, 08:15 PM   #38
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The WDH is a safety component.
Then are you saying that almost every commercial trailer is unsafe? WD is only used on "light" trailers (typically up to about 10,000 lb), and even then it would be pretty surprising to see a few tons of construction equipment behind a "one ton" or slightly bigger (truck class 3 to 5) on a trailer with a WDH. WD is mostly a recreational gadget... as others have said, for inadequate tugs.
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Old 01-11-2013, 09:41 PM   #39
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Somehow I don't think that about 95% of those in the FGRV group would want a Commercial tractor type vehicle for the occasional use as a tow vehicle and more common use as daily transportation just to not need a WD Hitch. If that were the case there wouldn't be much of a market for towables over about 15' in length.

As I have mentioned, we have a GMC Yukon that we use to tow a 3500+ lb Coleman 171 with and on the occasions when I have towed it without the spring bars in place I can feel the difference in directional stability. Having a WD hitch makes towing with "Family" vehicles much more enoyable and safer.
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Old 01-12-2013, 12:02 AM   #40
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Even if you can use a wd hitch, I would still do airbags on a vehicle known to sag bad. Using a wd to fix that is a bandaid, and putting a lot of stress on things.

I've never found a need for wd hitches myself, even with heavy towing. Campers do make it harder to load them properly, though.
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Old 01-12-2013, 12:04 AM   #41
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How often would the air bags have to be filled...is it something you fill before you hook up? And how long do these airbags actually last?
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Old 01-12-2013, 12:11 AM   #42
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I would bet maybe once a month, and there are relatively cheap compressors for them that you can install. Quality airbags last for years. You could fill them before or after, but I would feel better doing it before, if using a wd hitch.

For the most part, you want an even load on your axles (this of course changes with pickups and such). If your rear suspension is soft, a wd hitch will make it level, but be transmitting much of the weight to the front. The air bags will help the rear share the load more, and the vehicle won't squat as far, either.

*RANT*

One of the main reasons I dislike wd hitches is that 90% of the users I see with them, are using them as a bandaid to improper trailer loading, too small of a tow vehicle, weak suspension, etc.

Wd hitches have a purpose, it's just a narrower purpose than most people think.

On the way up for Christmas, I saw an expedition pulling an airstream that was longer than my Titan and 19' scamp combined. The hitch was 3-4" off the ground, and the headlights were eye level. I was staring at it, and the guy said, "yeah, I need a wd hitch". No…you need at least a 1/2, preferably 3/4 ton.
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