Hitch help! - Page 5 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-19-2007, 02:59 PM   #57
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Name: Sandra
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Laura:

I too have a 05 Forester (XT) and will be doing the same thing -- adapting a 1.25" hitch receiver opening to a 2" hitch opening. Want to get a Scamp 16' & use a WDH.

Here's a web site that has adapter. Doing a Google search will show several other manuf. who make the adapter.

http://www.netshops.com/cart/shopper.cfm?a...ci_sku=CTM754-3

Ed

Hi all, I just got through talking to a tech person from Curt manufacturing, and he said the adapter is NOT for towing. They have an 800 # 1-800.798.0813.
Good luck,
Peace and sunshine
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Old 09-19-2007, 03:32 PM   #58
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Quote:

Hi all, I just got through talking to a tech person from Curt manufacturing, and he said the adapter is NOT for towing. They have an 800 # 1-800.798.0813.
Good luck,
Peace and sunshine
Yes. I've looked at all kinds of extensions. Some are rated for towing, but all of them diminish any gain you get from the WDH by lengthening the distance to the hitch ball. Apparently, even 3 inches makes a difference.

After all this research, I can say with good conscience that Subies are made to tow and are being used for this very successfully for towing light trailers of all sorts. Other forums have all kinds of Subie owner's reporting good experiances with them and in the UK, these same models are being used for much heavier trailers (at lower speeds) than we would pull with them in the US.

Having said that....I still haven't found any practical way to increase the tongue weight capacity and stay within acceptable safety margins for US sensibilities. Basically, there seem to be 2 options:

1) Get a custom hitch installed w/ a 2" receiver so you can use a light duty WDH. This should give you up to 20% greater tongue weight. That's not much, but adds a margin of safety for better handling and is easier on your suspension.

2) Set up the tow as perfectly as you can. Raise the hitch height (with a ball mount) to the manufacturers recomended height. Check your weight on each axle and make sure you're within tolerances. Balance your load so you are right at 10% tongue. Keep your car gear light.....and go slow.

I'm picking it up next saturdayand my first stop will be a weigh station - so you know which option I'm trying first. I'll tell you how it goes. Watch for any threads that ask for advice about a new tow vehicle.
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Old 09-19-2007, 03:35 PM   #59
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Set up the tow as perfectly as you can. Raise the hitch height (with a ball mount) to the manufacturers recomended height. Check your weight on each axle and make sure you're within tolerances. Balance your load so you are right at 10% tongue. Keep your car gear light.....and go slow.

Watch for any threads that ask for advice about a new tow vehicle.
Well done. You nailed it. Good luck.

Roger
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Old 09-19-2007, 06:46 PM   #60
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Option 1 still applies an unapproved hitch type (WD) to the car; even though it may be expected to help, it doesn't give me a warm fuzzy feeling.

Option 2 looks better, and the points in it are great, but I would not fixate on the 10% hitch weight value. If lower hitch weight does not come from balancing tongue loads with counterweights at the back, but instead from keeping the load more central, then a lower percentage would relieve the excess load on the car and be dynamically sound.

I might add some more ideas:
  • improving the trailer stability with shock absorbers
  • choosing car tires with high lateral stiffness for control
  • stiffening the car's rear suspension, such as with added air springs
These do not increase the car's rated capacity, only improve behaviour within the allowed operating limits.
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Old 09-20-2007, 03:25 PM   #61
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One more suggestion I would make -- anything you load into the trailer, put it on the floor. Use plastic totes, and then load the cabinets after you arrive. By keeping the center of gravity on the trailer low, the trailer will move around less on the road, putting less force against the tow vehicle. And, goodness gracious, go slow! Take a look at the "Is your tow vehicle too small" thread in general chat.
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Old 09-23-2007, 05:35 PM   #62
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Well, we went to NC from VA (about 3 hours drive) and picked up our new (used) 1999 16'Scamp. We stayed in NC overnight, just for fun. We wanted to play with our new (used) camper and see how everything works.

I'm glad to be able to tell you that the Subie did great. It had no problems towing the 16' Scamp. The engine really only felt the extra load it on acceleration. There was an impact on gas mileage, but performance up hills was fine. At 60mph in 4th gear, the RPMs stayed centered on 3000, and we still had plenty of power left for emergencies. Braking was smooth and controlled, even thru turns.

We packed everything with a thought toward keeping the load low and centered on the trailer axle. The tongue weight was 195lbs, right at the manufacurer's limit, but the car handled it just fine. The rear suspension only sagged about 2 inches or so when the tongue was lowered, which put the tongue at an almost perfect height for good balance. We used a ball mount with 5"rise in order to get as close as possible to the recomended tongue height, but that's the only adaptation we used.

We left the battery on the tongue and grey water and fresh water in the tanks and the kitchen wares in the cabinets. We had groceries, bedding, clothes and camping gear also, so the trailer was fully loaded. Yet, we had no problems with sway or bucking. The car road a little rougher than usual on one stretch in NC where the road was rough. But, there was never any time that the car felt out of control or the steering sluggish, it was just a little bumpier than normal.

All I can say is that Subaru sure makes a tough little car.
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Old 09-23-2007, 05:49 PM   #63
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Glad to hear all was good for you.
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Old 09-23-2007, 05:56 PM   #64
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Laura,

I glad your trip completed safely and I hope you enjoy your new trailer. You have more guts than I do. As i stated previously,I would never use a Forester to pull a 16Ft trailer at those weights mainly because of sway concerns. I hope that I'm wrong.

Bes regards,
Jerry
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Old 09-23-2007, 09:17 PM   #65
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Laura, since you have the hitch weight, do you also have the trailer axle weight? After all of the speculation, it would be interesting to hear where reality ended up.
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