Anti-Sway Bar - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-24-2016, 09:05 AM   #21
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Name: Frederick / Janis
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Originally Posted by floyd View Post
Fact is, the anti-sway bar does reduce the responsiveness of the trailer, especially in reverse. That's really what it is supposed to do!
When backing up you need to remove it or loosen it only when you have some complex maneuvering to do. Otherwise it may actually help by keeping the trailer from overreacting.
Not disagreeing at all. Just saying that much of the enclosed OEM printed material for the owners make no distinction. To further complicate matters perhaps, installers, such as RV dealerships, also routinely inform folks, "take it off to back up". When you chat with folks at camp grounds, person after person tell me, "My salesman said never back up" or "Got to take it off to backup". No conditions, no additional guidance. Shrug.

So, what else is new. I don't often find myself wanting to engage such conversations with people as once their installer or salesman has told them something, that's that. Life's too short and I only care so much.
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Old 03-24-2016, 09:18 AM   #22
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While any household MIG will weld the plate to the tongue securely, this plate adapter is attractive and works well and is available for those who don't have access to a stick welder to attach the sway ball to the drawbar...



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Old 03-24-2016, 09:21 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by WDavidG View Post
... (I think the illustration shows eight bolt holes required).

When I grew up it seemed there was a welding shop, or two, in every small town. As you note, they are hard to find these days.
Four holes for the mounting plate and eight for the spacer that optionally goes between it and the trailer frame. There is much confusion about the use of the larger plate, and even etrailer gives different explanations.

However it seems that this is the correct purpose of the spacer plate and that it is not needed if you weld the ball plate on or if trailer frame tubing is of sufficient size to allow the self-taping screws to be used. I did not use the spacer plate, the ball plate is welded right onto the frame tube.

(And you can bet your bibby that the propane tank and battery were removed prior to the welding!)

And yes, it seems that welding is becoming a lost art.
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Old 03-24-2016, 09:26 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by floyd View Post
While any household MIG will weld the plate to the tongue securely, this plate adapter is attractive and works well and is available for those who don't have access to a stick welder to attach the sway ball to the drawbar...
Once again Floyd brings up a good point, and one that perhaps could use a further comment.

This was the solution I planned at first but researching before purchase I found that the shank on my ball was not long enough so I would have had to buy both the adapter plate AND a new ball. Plus, it raises the tongue just a little (etrailer has the spec somewhere).

PS, is every household supposed to have a MIG welder? I think not... but I do like the idea! I so wish I could do some simple welding.

So for me, even though getting the weld done was a bit of a chore, it came out to be cheaper and maybe even stronger.
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Old 03-24-2016, 09:32 AM   #25
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Norm, Floyd

Again, not to beat a dead horse, as I cannot get inside the heads of the OEMs who say in their printed material to remove the bar before backing up, but I don't believe it is simply a matter of not having the friction set too high. Not sure that's their only particular concern.

Rather the potential damage they warn against is turning the TV so sharply as to push the friction bar all the way in and then damage it by jamming up the whole thing. At least this is the thinking of many RV dealers/salesman/installers that I have spoken to about these devices. So, I don't mind too awfully horribly their advice to folks to just avoid harm's way and remove it. As Gordon2 says, if it's off, it cannot be damaged.

Understand your thoughts though Floyd about the friction actually assisting with the backing, as long as the jacknife isn't severe enough to jam the whole mess up.
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Old 03-24-2016, 09:50 AM   #26
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My sway bar had the instructions which were posted. You only need to remove it when backing if, at jacknife, it contracts "completely", or contacts the bumper of the tow vehicle. If it doesn't do these things, you can back with it. This will I guess depend on how you installed it, and the particular trailer and vehicle.

I bought the adapter that floyd posted. Works fine for me so far. It's less than 1/2" thick so won't change the ball height much. I didn't do any welding. I may have a guy weld the plate to the trailer tongue, but I already bolted it on so I probably won't.

One point that the guy who offered to weld it for me made: welding also weakens metal. It makes it more brittle and less pliable. So it's a compromise. If you think you'd be drilling the edges of your frame tube to bolt the plate on, then probably carefully welding is a better idea. If your frame is wide enough that you'd be drilling inside the edges, then it's kind of a toss up.
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Old 03-24-2016, 10:29 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by ZachO View Post
...

One point that the guy who offered to weld it for me made: welding also weakens metal. It makes it more brittle and less pliable. So it's a compromise. If you think you'd be drilling the edges of your frame tube to bolt the plate on, then probably carefully welding is a better idea. If your frame is wide enough that you'd be drilling inside the edges, then it's kind of a toss up.



While we are on the subject, if its not too far off topic...

I admit this is the first time I have used a friction sway bar. The groaning noise on turns is very pronounced and it resonates throughout the tug (driving my dog nuts). I heard that this is normal during break-in period but should lessen.

I have 270 miles on this new sway bar and a trip of 1200 miles coming up very soon. Anything to worry about here? Might it be too tight?
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Old 03-24-2016, 12:00 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by ZachO View Post
One point that the guy who offered to weld it for me made: welding also weakens metal. It makes it more brittle and less pliable. So it's a compromise. If you think you'd be drilling the edges of your frame tube to bolt the plate on, then probably carefully welding is a better idea. If your frame is wide enough that you'd be drilling inside the edges, then it's kind of a toss up.
I just measured my frame and it appears that like yours it is a bit too small for the hole spacing on the mounting plate (video on E-Trailer indicates holes on 2 5/16 centers). Wonder if there is any problem just re-drilling two of the holes in the plate to fit the frame (it doesn't appear that I should need the spacer plate).
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Old 03-24-2016, 12:44 PM   #29
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I have the same plate as Floyd and have used it for about 5 years without any issue. Very easy to install.

I've never checked to see what kind of angle one must make when backing to entirely consume the motion of the anti-sway bar. I'll have to try it bue in a few thousand back ins there hasn't been a problem I'm aware of having.
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Old 03-24-2016, 01:06 PM   #30
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I have the same plate as Floyd and have used it for about 5 years without any issue. Very easy to install.
Thanks Norm. Gives me confidence to proceed with one.

BTW, I'm going to PM you re the NL Caravan.
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Old 03-24-2016, 07:06 PM   #31
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Name: Karin & Don
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Thanks to everyone who has chimed in on this thread. We are going to be installing this on our 13 footer (peace of mind) and this has been very helpful as a place to start in choice of purchase and also installation.
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Old 03-24-2016, 07:56 PM   #32
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I have a Scamp 16 foot deluxe oak, and tow it with a two door Suzuki Sidekick / Geo Tracker. I've welded on an anti sway bar attachment to both my frame and preferred draw bar. I carry the anti sway with me, but have yet to try it out. I just took a 500 mile drive from southern MI to the tipy top of it in Mackinaw City and back. What I noted in the areas with high wind was that my vehicle was actually MORE stable with the trailer than without.

If I ever get caught in something rather severe enough to cause me issues I will either install it and continue, or just pull off somewhere and wait it out. I am in no rush since I have my home right behind me.

The vehicle is so light that wind shoves it around quite easily on its own, with the trailer adding mass this was so much less pronounced that I could hardly tell there WAS wind. No more quick little left and right shoves from the wind. As soon as I unhitched it was back to being tossed about as usual. My vehicle is great for towing despite the low power and small size. Mostly because the ball on the hitch is only about one foot behind the rear axle.

The further back this connection point is, the more sway you will get.

I got my friction anti sway at Harbor Freight. Cheap (25% off too) and the same as the bigger brands. Look up Harbor Freight 20% off coupon on retail me not (no association) since there is always one there. If you don't have a HF near, order on their site with the same coupon since shipping is only $6.99 for anything.
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Old 03-24-2016, 11:18 PM   #33
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Anti-Sway Bar

Quote:
Originally Posted by bpfick View Post
Not disagreeing at all. Just saying that much of the enclosed OEM printed material for the owners make no distinction. To further complicate matters perhaps, installers, such as RV dealerships, also routinely inform folks, "take it off to back up". When you chat with folks at camp grounds, person after person tell me, "My salesman said never back up" or "Got to take it off to backup". No conditions, no additional guidance. Shrug.

So, what else is new. I don't often find myself wanting to engage such conversations with people as once their installer or salesman has told them something, that's that. Life's too short and I only care so much.

The reason it's recommended removing the Swaybar is because it can bend. Most RV parks have very narrow roads and backing up may require sharp turns which can lead to the Swaybar bending. If you search the RV forums you'll be surprised how many people bend their sway bars. YMMV


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Old 03-25-2016, 12:36 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by MarkyVasquez View Post
The reason it's recommended removing the Swaybar is because it can bend. Most RV parks have very narrow roads and backing up may require sharp turns which can lead to the Swaybar bending. If you search the RV forums you'll be surprised how many people bend their sway bars. YMMV


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What he said!
If you make a full lock turn while driving forward you will (should) not jackknife the trailer. However, in reverse things can get much tighter much faster if you are not careful. Sometimes you even need to borderline jackknife it then straighten it out a few times to make a tight corner. Sort of like a multi point turn. Basically this can and will go beyond the range of motion allowed by the anti sway device, and can bend and break things.

If when reversing you are staying within the same bounds you would while driving forward and turning then there will be no issue.

On loose enough terrain, and if the friction device is tightened enough (too much!) you may fins that the trailer can actually slide rather than turning when reversing. For someone who has difficulty reversing in a straight line with a trailer this could actually prove beneficial. It all comes down to extreme angles. Avoid them and you will be fine leaving that anti sway on at all times.
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Old 03-25-2016, 06:27 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by MarkyVasquez View Post
The reason it's recommended removing the Swaybar is because it can bend. Most RV parks have very narrow roads and backing up may require sharp turns which can lead to the Swaybar bending. If you search the RV forums you'll be surprised how many people bend their sway bars. YMMV
Yeah, all this was covered earlier in the thread, actually, and those who don't remove their sway bars remain quite unconvinced.

It also seems that people can tear up just about anything and everything in campgrounds. For over 45 years, my wife and I consider sitting in lawn chairs and watching the escapades of folks backing and settling into the spaces a huge part of the entertainment value of camping/RVing generally. On more than one ocassion the "show" was more than worth the ticket price of the park's nightly fee.
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Old 03-25-2016, 09:13 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by bpfick View Post
Y... For over 45 years, my wife and I consider sitting in lawn chairs and watching the escapades of folks backing and settling into the spaces a huge part of the entertainment value of camping/RVing generally. On more than one ocassion the "show" was more than worth the ticket price of the park's nightly fee.
I prefer boat ramps (at least since I am no longer part of the show)... and that entertainment has no cover charge
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Old 03-25-2016, 09:44 AM   #37
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I prefer boat ramps (at least since I am no longer part of the show)... and that entertainment has no cover charge
As a 30+ year boater myself, I gotta tell you, Gordon, I really blew it. By far the launching and picking up of trailerable craft at a public launch is THE best entertainment for the buck anywhere. Touche'
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Old 03-25-2016, 09:49 AM   #38
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Name: Frederick / Janis
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Originally Posted by MarkyVasquez View Post
The reason it's recommended removing the Swaybar is because it can bend. Most RV parks have very narrow roads and backing up may require sharp turns which can lead to the Swaybar bending. If you search the RV forums you'll be surprised how many people bend their sway bars. YMMV
Marky, to be clear? If I can remember to do so? You bet. I'll take mine off when backing into tight or goofy spots. It's not difficult. As Gordon said early on, if it's off, it's one less thing to worry about damaging.
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Old 03-25-2016, 10:36 AM   #39
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Removing the sway bar for backing into a campsite is not really an additional move, considering that the trailer will usually be disconnected from the TV anyway, once parked.
I don't think anyone removes it to back-up while in transit.
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