13' Scamp..do we need sway bars? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-29-2013, 12:07 PM   #1
Ric
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13' Scamp..do we need sway bars?

we're rookies with a new 13' Scamp..do we need to worry about sway bars?
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Old 01-29-2013, 12:19 PM   #2
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Generally No... but you need the weight distributed properly and watch your driving speed.

I added an anti sway bar to my 13 Scamp because I had added weight (the bike) on the back and had sway when gathering speed going down hill on a turn. That would be at about 65 mph. I now have my generator on the tongue and notice the anti sway bar may not be needed now. Having said that I still use the bar because of the wind movement caused by passing semi trucks. Everything is simply a little bit more stable.

Most sway incidents I have heard of has to be with speed, but then you have those who claim to travel 70/75 mph regularly.

Note: some know that my trailer is a little on the heavy side however the sway I encountered was early on before I started added lots of stuff to my trailer.
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Old 01-29-2013, 12:32 PM   #3
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Over 50,000 miles traveled with our 13 and have never had sway. No sway bar.

Maybe that is because we have no water in the rear and are a bit tongue heavy.

As Joy said, if you have weight in the rear balance it out with weight on the tongue. Guess you want to make sure you are fairly level too, not tongue up or down. Oh, we don't exceed 65, usually more like 55 or 60 unless it is interstate and then might go up to 65.

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Old 01-29-2013, 01:26 PM   #4
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To worry about a friction sway bar would be like worrying about power steering or other luxuries.
A 13Scamp, when setup right, doesn't need a friction sway bar, but it is a nice luxury!
Of course, Eggy-Sue(my 13Scamp) has seen 90MPH, but only about twice for a short distance,...60 is a satisfying pace.
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Old 01-29-2013, 02:58 PM   #5
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Generally No... but you need the weight distributed properly and watch your driving speed.

I added an anti sway bar to my 13 Scamp because I had added weight (the bike) on the back and had sway when gathering speed going down hill on a turn. That would be at about 65 mph. I now have my generator on the tongue and notice the anti sway bar may not be needed now. Having said that I still use the bar because of the wind movement caused by passing semi trucks. Everything is simply a little bit more stable.

Most sway incidents I have heard of has to be with speed, but then you have those who claim to travel 70/75 mph regularly.

Note: some know that my trailer is a little on the heavy side however the sway I encountered was early on before I started added lots of stuff to my trailer.
Just curious. We have a 13 foot Scamp too. It has two LP tanks two tongue jacks, and battery on the tongue. Where do you mount the generator? We have little room on our tongue.

Thanks.
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Old 01-29-2013, 06:28 PM   #6
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Sway Bar

We have towed a Casita 16 and a Scamp 16 with and without an anti- sway bar. In both cases we have never experienced sway. We now have an anti-sway bar on our Scamp.

When we first started towing a trailer we asked the advice of others. The most common response was that you will probably never need it except if there's some kind of emergency. We had one of those emergencies and the anti-sway bar helped to hold everything together.

As well anti-sway bars cost very little, about $50, are easy to install and even easier to use.

We once had a small, stick trailer and mounted a 40 lb generator on the rear bumper.... almost instant sway.
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Old 01-29-2013, 06:48 PM   #7
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Little or no tongue weight is an invitation for sway. Keep 100 lbs or more tongue weight on your 13 and you should be fine.

I once had a 4x8 utility trailer start to oscillate on me! The reason: a long steel object sticking out past the rear gate, taking all the weight off the tongue. I learned never to have a light tongue again.
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Old 02-07-2013, 10:32 AM   #8
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I experienced only minor sway with my 13' Scamp, so I found a sway bar at a sale for $18 bucks just to keep everything smooth as silk.
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Old 02-07-2013, 12:49 PM   #9
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I don't use sway bars and it's worth noting that they're virtually unknown in Europe, where the speed limit for trailers is around 50 mph and very strictly enforced.

Sway is a mostly predictable function of loading, tires, and speed. I keep my load balanced, my tongue weight over 10%, run correct (and correctly inflated) tires, and never drive over 60 mph when towing.


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Old 02-07-2013, 01:14 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by honda03842 View Post
As well anti-sway bars cost very little, about $50, are easy to install and even easier to use.
Norm, do you recall what brand you purchaed or where you purchased it? Thanks
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:29 PM   #11
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etrailer is always a good source for towing accessories. Harbor Freight used to sell a Chinese knockoff sway bar, but I don't see it listed anymore. Amazon also carries them, many with customer ratings.

Edit, HF still has them: http://www.harborfreight.com/trailer...kit-96462.html
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:35 PM   #12
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Thanks Tom. I'll look into those sources. I've never seen sway bars that cheap ($50). I was looking at some for just under $200, but that's probably over-kill.
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:44 PM   #13
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For those perhaps on the ragged edge of the tug's max hitch weight:

Anyone contemplating adding sway bars should bear in mind that the additional weight of that equipment must be factored into tongue weight..

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Old 02-07-2013, 01:55 PM   #14
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In looking at my Sienna's documents, they state the following:
"If towing a trailer and cargo weighing over 907 kg (2000 lbs), it is necessary to use a sway control device with sufficient capacity. "
It doesn't appear that the 13' Scamp would exceed that. But, is it better to use one if you are close? Is there a negative effect (other than the increased tongue weight or cost) to using them?

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Old 02-07-2013, 02:00 PM   #15
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Bearing in mind in mind that "controlling sway" is not the same thing as eliminating it:

In my opinion, sway bars can have a negative affect in that by "controlling" existing sway forces the driver may be unaware of the in most cases correctable condition that's actually causing it.

Francesca

ON EDIT CAVEAT:

I should add that in my opinion, brakes on the trailer are a far more important sway-control device as actuating them is a reliable method of bringing a trailer out of a sway should one occur.

Those trailers lacking brakes should probably be equipped with sway control bars for that reason.

Also:
It's my understanding that sway bars cannot be used on trailers with surge-type brakes.(e.g. Lil Snoozy)
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Old 02-07-2013, 05:16 PM   #16
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Anti-sway bar

Here's the first one I came to on Amazon by Reese, $30.

Reese Towpower 83660 Value Friction Sway Control : Amazon.com : Automotive
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Old 02-07-2013, 09:14 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by honda03842 View Post
Here's the first one I came to on Amazon by Reese, $30.

Reese Towpower 83660 Value Friction Sway Control : Amazon.com : Automotive
Judging by the comments, this appears an economy brand clone. Etrailer lists this product as "Pro Series Friction Control." As long as you don't care about branding, it is probably good value. It is entertaining that the adapter plate (should you need one) is going to cost you the same as the sway control device itself.

Here is another one thats only $22.

FRICTION RV POP UP CAMPER TRAILER HITCH HEAVY DUTY ANTI SWAY CONTROL NEW | eBay
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Old 02-07-2013, 09:57 PM   #18
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Put brakes on the trailer, stay under 55 mph, and save your money, folks. In more ways than one, too! Not only can you forego "sway control" add-ons, speed is the most important factor in fuel economy.

And who wants to donate more to the "Big Oil Charitable Trust" than absolutely necessary?

Francesca
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Old 02-07-2013, 10:10 PM   #19
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Now my ParkLiner's original owner Harry had a swaybar for towin with his 4cyl toyota pickup, I drove it home 300 some miles and didn't seem to have any problems and took it over the delaware memorial bridge which is a little scary cause its pretty tall and usually pretty breezy... I wonder if him haveing a small pickup without a cap and I have a heavier suv has anything to do with it? I guess if I really felt it moveing around back there it might be a good thing, but I dont like that you have to get out and disconnect it if you need to back up... Ive missed driveways and just backed up to turn in and that would mean makeing a detour to get bac to where I was going.

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Old 02-07-2013, 10:37 PM   #20
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[QUOTE=deryk;361419]I dont like that you have to get out and disconnect it if you need to back up... Ive missed driveways and just backed up to turn in and that would mean makeing a detour to get bac to where I was going QUOTE]

Huh? Seriously? you can't back up with a sway bar???
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