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Old 07-17-2011, 05:25 PM   #1
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KZ-RV trailer (E16BH)

I'm thinking about buying a 16' camper. New to the hobby, but not to towing trailers.

I have a 14'x6' enclosed cargo trailer (single axle), and it causes the truck to squat about the same as the new camper (I asked the sales guy if I could hook up to it to make sure it didn't squat too much).

Dry weight of the trailer is 2360 lb. My truck is good for 5000 lb. Trailer has brakes, truck has brake controller.

I already use friction-type sway control with my cargo trailer for more control, and two separate guys at the RV delaership said I was good to go without a WD hitch. Just sway control alone was OK.

The back of the truck squats about 1.5" from stock height with the dry trailer connected. With 230 lb additional tongue weight (a person) on the hitch, I figured another inch sag. I have the 4-leaf TSB leaf back.

I do have Firestone Ride-Rite airbags ready to put in the truck, but was wondering whether weight distribution would be required.
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Old 07-18-2011, 11:09 PM   #2
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I have the Air-Lift bags on my truck and I don't use them.

However, I use a weight distribution hitch instead, and therefore it levels my trailer out.

Having an inch or so of squat isn't to bad a thing, here's a few things to check out and get back with us on.

1. When hooked up, is the trailer level? (Use a 2 or 4 foot level on the most level ground you can find and see if it's raked one way or another or if it's straight).

2. Is the trailer single or tandem axle?

3. What tire pressure you running in the trailer (also what is max tire pressure listed on tire of trailer).

4. What tire pressure you running on the truck? Fronts and Back values.

5. Drive it around, how does the sway control only do?

6. Keep it at 65 MPH or lower, most trailer tires aren't rated past that and might heat up and blowout, especially if they are underinflated.

7. Cargo trailers and travel trailers have different "suggested" tongue weights. Most travel trailers say 12% - 15% of total weight on the tongue for optimal performance. I know for a fact that's a good number to start with. I had 8% tongue weight on my travel trailer at first and it pulled like crap. Added some water in the fresh tanks which was up front to add some weight to the tongue and it pulled much better.

8. Is that camper a pop-up or a hardwalled full on travel trailer?
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Old 07-18-2011, 11:12 PM   #3
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Also, I was told by a tow shop that I should be good without a WD hitch on mine too, but I ended up installing one to give me additional confidence, and it's worth every penny.

You could also use it on your Cargo trailer when needed and that would be nice to have if you had a heavy load.
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Old 07-19-2011, 05:53 AM   #4
bigmooze [OP] bigmooze is offline
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Thanks for the reply, see below for my answers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fajitas21 View Post
I have the Air-Lift bags on my truck and I don't use them.

However, I use a weight distribution hitch instead, and therefore it levels my trailer out.

Having an inch or so of squat isn't to bad a thing, here's a few things to check out and get back with us on.

1. When hooked up, is the trailer level? (Use a 2 or 4 foot level on the most level ground you can find and see if it's raked one way or another or if it's straight). Yes, trailer is level.

2. Is the trailer single or tandem axle? Single axle.

3. What tire pressure you running in the trailer (also what is max tire pressure listed on tire of trailer). Have to get back to you on this.

4. What tire pressure you running on the truck? Fronts and Back values. About 35 PSI in all tires. Running BFG AT T/A's.

5. Drive it around, how does the sway control only do?

6. Keep it at 65 MPH or lower, most trailer tires aren't rated past that and might heat up and blowout, especially if they are underinflated.

7. Cargo trailers and travel trailers have different "suggested" tongue weights. Most travel trailers say 12% - 15% of total weight on the tongue for optimal performance. I know for a fact that's a good number to start with. I had 8% tongue weight on my travel trailer at first and it pulled like crap. Added some water in the fresh tanks which was up front to add some weight to the tongue and it pulled much better.

8. Is that camper a pop-up or a hardwalled full on travel trailer? It's a hard-walled trailer. Fibreglass shell.
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Old 07-19-2011, 06:17 AM   #5
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Understand that aig bags and a weight distributing hitch to not to the same thing. Air bags help the leaf springs so they don't sag as much under a heavy load and a weight distributing hitch puts torque on the hitch try and lift the back end of the truck and force the front end down. Air bags will take the squat away but a weight distributing hitch can make the trailer handle much better behind the truck. If you don't have one yet, take it for a drive and if you feel confident enough with your current set-up, save your money and don't bother, if you feel like the back is bouncy because the tongue weight is too much, then go for the W/D hitch.
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Old 07-19-2011, 11:52 AM   #6
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If you have the money, get a WDH, it will be much better towing, no matter if you "can get by" without it.
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Old 07-25-2011, 05:42 AM   #7
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no doubt, WDH is the way to go. Better control less bounce and 1" of rear sag 1/2" of front rise on my rig loaded. The truck is level as well as the trailer WDH put weight back up front where you need it most for control. W/O WDH your front will be light lessening control of your whole rig.
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Old 08-01-2011, 05:39 PM   #8
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Well after the first two trips out with the new camper, I'm ready to look at WD hitches.

I'd like to have less of a bouncy ride and have the trailer level. Right now, my steering is loose (but not to the point of feeling dangerous) with the trailer hooked up, and I don't like the V-shaphe that the truck and trailer make when viewed side on.

When I bought the trailer the salesperson said I needed 4-point sway control, and showed me an Equal-i-zer hitch. I believe one of the reasons was the smaller frame dimensions on the trailer.

Most of the WD hitches I have seen have been the "chain" type. What do folks around here use?
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Old 08-01-2011, 07:33 PM   #9
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I tow an 18', 3200lb. single axle RPod travel trailer with my '06 Prerunner. I started towing this combo with a garden variety 4" drop draw bar. Being a little lightly sprung without the rear spring TSB, this set up would hobby horse some on some roads. I bought a Camco Eaz Lift for a little over $200 w/no shipping charge from Amazon. It is a chain type WDH. I'm familiar with the brand, as it's the brand I've used on 3 other trailers. I got the EAZ Lift w550 lb spring bars, as that size is appropriate for my truck/trailer combo.

The hitch pretty much eliminated the hobby horsing. I've towed with it in 30-40 mph gusty winds and on freeways with passing semi trucks with no hint of sway. A cheap friction sway bar is available with this hitch, but I'm not going to install one unless I run into any sway problems in the future.

If the trailer is loaded correctly, with about 15% of its weight on the tongue, then sway control is not necessary, but still good for a greater safety margin. Many times sway is due to a poor trailer/ tow vehicle match, improper trailer loading, improper hitch set up, or a combination of these things.
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Old 08-01-2011, 07:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiskeyjack View Post
I tow an 18', 3200lb. single axle RPod travel trailer with my '06 Prerunner. I started towing this combo with a garden variety 4" drop draw bar. Being a little lightly sprung without the rear spring TSB, this set up would hobby horse some on some roads. I bought a Camco Eaz Lift for a little over $200 w/no shipping charge from Amazon. It is a chain type WDH. I'm familiar with the brand, as it's the brand I've used on 3 other trailers. I got the EAZ Lift w550 lb spring bars, as that size is appropriate for my truck/trailer combo.

The hitch pretty much eliminated the hobby horsing. I've towed with it in 30-40 mph gusty winds and on freeways with passing semi trucks with no hint of sway. A cheap friction sway bar is available with this hitch, but I'm not going to install one unless I run into any sway problems in the future.

If the trailer is loaded correctly, with about 15% of its weight on the tongue, then sway control is not necessary, but still good for a greater safety margin. Many times sway is due to a poor trailer/ tow vehicle match, improper trailer loading, improper hitch set up, or a combination of these things.
Thanks for the info. What size rectangular tubing is used on your trailer's A-frame? What I'm getting at here is whether or not this system would work on my trailer.
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Old 08-01-2011, 10:05 PM   #11
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Equal-i-zer is a really great product and it will fit your A Frame. It's adjustable to just about any A Frame.

In addition, I personally use a Reese Dual Cam chain lifting WD hitch, which essentials works in the same thought process as an Equal-i-zer but with chains instead of lift bars.

Can't really go wrong with either, both will run around $400 - $600 depending on if you get a good price.

Even with the trailer properly loaded I was still getting some sway on the highway. I measure tongue weights, total weights, hit the CAT scales a few times and re-positioned everything a few times to get it right. That got rid of most of my sway, but the Dual Cams polished it off.

Keep in mind I'm pulling a 23' long trailer to your 18' on a Tacoma, which is a much larger and less aerodynamic (mine is not teardrop shaped liked the rPods) setup.
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Old 08-02-2011, 01:10 AM   #12
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The frame on my RPod is 4".
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