Andersen Weight Distributing Hitches - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-17-2013, 02:30 PM   #1
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:50 PM   #2
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I think this might be the most extensive discussion of the Andersen No-Sway Hitch so far in this forum:
Andersen w/d hitch It has been the subject of much discussion - some quite heated - in other forums.

I agree that it is an interesting design. That load on the back of the coupler is enormous, and is the most negative aspect of the product in my opinion.

As for suiting small trailers, I note that it comes in only one "size", so it is heavier than necessary and probably stiffer than ideal for most FiberglassRV members.
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Old 07-18-2013, 01:13 AM   #3
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I read about it on the Airstream forum. Some people could not grasp the concept that pulling back with the chains put a huge load on the back of the coupler.

I'll check out the other discussion.

I would think this LL hitch could be made lighter for egg campers with light weight TV's.

Welding the bracket on the trailer instead of bolting, lighter weight or shorter chains, cutting away some of the extraneous metal on drop part of the ball mount, perhaps drilling out some of core of the tapered ball.

Has anyone used this with an Eggcamper?
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Old 07-18-2013, 01:39 AM   #4
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I've always had a bit of trouble with the idea of WHD and Friction anti-sway for our small trailers.
A trailer is connected to the tow hitch via a ball and socket designed to move freely is directions. WHD systems stiffens the ball and socket connection, as does anti-sway bars. Additional stresses are transferred to the trailer frame, axle and tires.
My point is if you don't need it, which most fiberglass trailers don't, then using these items can create more problems than the imaginary ones they're supposed to fixing.
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Old 07-18-2013, 01:40 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Night Sailor View Post
I read about it on the Airstream forum. Some people could not grasp the concept that pulling back with the chains put a huge load on the back of the coupler.

I'll check out the other discussion.

I would think this LL hitch could be made lighter for egg campers with light weight TV's.

Welding the bracket on the trailer instead of bolting, lighter weight or shorter chains, cutting away some of the extraneous metal on drop part of the ball mount, perhaps drilling out some of core of the tapered ball.

Has anyone used this with an Eggcamper?
Airstream trailer are a lot heavier than fiberglass trailers and WHD hitches may be needed. It's never a good idea to compare apples and oranges.
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Old 07-18-2013, 01:54 AM   #6
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Airstream trailer are a lot heavier than fiberglass trailers and WHD hitches may be needed. It's never a good idea to compare apples and oranges.
Yup. And some fiberglass trailers are heavier than others, and some have more tongue weight than others, and some people tow with a different vehicle than others, which is why you should look at your situation and compare apples and apples.
I use a WDH with my RAV4 and Escape 17B. It improves the ride and makes the combo handle much better than without it.
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Old 07-18-2013, 06:45 AM   #7
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I read about it on the Airstream forum. Some people could not grasp the concept that pulling back with the chains put a huge load on the back of the coupler.
I agree. It is a huge load. Note the Andrsn is not compatible with at least one coupler and that is not mentioned when you buy it from Andrsn. Buyer beware.
Not
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Old 07-18-2013, 07:35 AM   #8
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I used one with my Escape 19'. You really do not need one of these for most fiberglass trailers as they are designed to shift the tongue weight to the tow vehicle and back to the trailer axles. So unless your t/w is adding too much weight to your tow vehicle it is not needed. The sway control is ancillary to the weight distribution aspect. If sway is an issue then you will need to address that by other means.
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Old 07-18-2013, 07:42 AM   #9
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Note.... By it's nature a basic WDH also firms up the connection at the ball. To some degree it helps keep the TV and trailer in a straight line reducing the yaw effect.
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Old 07-18-2013, 08:21 AM   #10
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Anyone considering any kind of WDH, esp for a smaller FGRV, should follow the current thread "HELP Frame Cracks", noting that the the previous owner included a WDH with the trailer. IOW: DUH!

When you pull UP on those tension bars, you are pushing that same load DOWN on the trailer frame in the tongue area. Not always a good thing if it wasn't designed/intended for that loading (as are Airstreams)
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Old 07-18-2013, 03:35 PM   #11
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When you pull UP on those tension bars, you are pushing that same load DOWN on the trailer frame in the tongue area. Not always a good thing if it wasn't designed/intended for that loading (as are Airstreams)
Since this thread is about the Andersen design, I'll note that while a conventional spring bar-based WDH pulls down on the frame with substantial force (several times as much force as the load transferred to the trailer axle) at the end of about two-foot levers, the Andersen instead pulls forward on the trailer with about four times more force than the spring bars (because its levers are half a foot long).

The Andersen is a different structural challenge for the trailer, but still a challenge.
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Old 07-26-2013, 01:09 PM   #12
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I've seen this hitch and this discussion on other forums several times... probably overkill for an egg and a sceptic as to how much better it works compare to a "traditional" setup.

One common theme for all instances is NO WDH SYSTEM WILL FIX TOWING ISSUES...

If your tow vehicle is to small in the first place I.e. towing a 16' Scamp with a Smart car... no WDH will fix the issue.

If your egg is loaded WRONG - NO WDH WILL FIX THE ISSUE.

As far as putting too much stress on the frame, that's because people are trying to fix tow issues by overloading the spring bars. They should be even with the frame and not curving upwards like I have seen so many do to compensate for tounge weight being too heavy for the tow vehicle.

NO WDH WILL FIX A TOW VEHICLE THAT CANNOT HANDLE WHAT YOU ARE TOWING.

PERIOD

I've seen people selling these and saying things like "I towed this easy with (small 4cyl passenger car here) and didn't have any problems." Well most small 4cyl cars don't have a tow rating because you aren't supposed to tow with them.Just because you can buy a hitch for it, by no means makes it a tow vehicle. You can buy a hitch for a Geo Metro, but I wouldn't tow even a 13' Scamp with it.

You may make it the 1st, 2nd, 3rd... time, but your luck will run out, just a matter of time.

Or solve all your problems and go buy a $3000 hensley.

And seriously, let's not compare an egg to an Airstream... even the smallest ones out weigh most eggs by 1,000 pounds...
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Old 07-26-2013, 02:44 PM   #13
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Very well said David and welcome to FGRV.....
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Old 07-26-2013, 03:11 PM   #14
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We have no sway, a light tongue and a relatively light trailer and use an anti- sway bar.

I have seen anti-sway bars that are set up too tight, where it's almost impossible for the trailer to turn a corner, in a sense locking the trailer and tow vehicle in a straight line.

We try to have our anti-sway bar tensioned so the trailer does turn, though one hears an anti-sway bar creaking on sharper turns. The anti-sway bar provides some measure of resistance to motions other than straight line diminishing the possibility of sway and tending to keep the trailer in a straight line.

I like the Andersen set up, probably my tendency to like the new, yet it seems to be a lot of hardware for our trailer and since we have a light tongue not necessary.

Admittedly there are those with heavier trailers that need a W/D hitch, thankfully we don't seem to need it.
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