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    #46
    wildman wrote:
    The FAQ on the LoadRite Trailer site concurs:

    "The basic premise with a weight-distributing hitch is to transfer load between the frame of the tow vehicle and the towed unit. In effect, it can serve to lock the two frames together. The wishbone design of a boat trailer, in conjunction with the use of a load distributing hitch, places a disproportionate amount of stress on the tongue member of the boat trailer frame. The tongue, already the most highly stressed boat trailer frame member, may then be required to perform above its design parameters."

    And you are right about the tow ratings for a load carrying hitch. So what the f&*! do I use to tow this thing?
    I think the first thing to do is upgrade the trailer to 4 wheel brakes, preferably disc and ideally electric over hydraulic as was previously discussed. Second would be to make sure the trailer is loaded properly with the correct amount of tongue weight - generally for a boat between 5 and 10% of the total loaded trailer weight. Third thing to do would be get a heavier duty tow vehicle, one with a tow rating and hitch rating that would allow you to tow this load on the ball without the use of a weight distributing hitch. Fourth thing would be to make sure the ball and ball mount are rated for the load you are towing. You can get ball mounts that are rated for anywhere from 3500 pounds to 15,000 pounds and similarly the balls available have varying weight ratings on them. At the end of the day whichever component of your towing system has the lowest rating, that is the potential breaking point and the absolute maximum you should be towing.

    Final result should be a tow package that will do the job required and be safe for everyone involved. You could end up spending a fair bit of $ but IMHO safety is the most important point.

    Good luck with this.

    Brian

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      #47
      I got the rear drum brakes on my 96 Dodge Ram 1500 upgraded, and reconditioned the trailer brakes. It makes a world of a difference. Much safer too. Thanks for all the input.

      I started by replacing the rear drum brake cylinders on my truck. I bled the system well, and I can tell there is more stopping power in the rear.

      For the trailer, a new master cylinder, and rear wheel cylinders (with Red RTV silicone to seal them as recommended). I had new shoes put on, and the drums machined. I flushed the brake fluid, and bled the system. I replaced a couple of bearings and re-greased as well.

      A very time consuming project and I'm feeling used up at the moment.

      Comment


        #48
        On the issue of the trailer loading the back axles more than the front, I don't think you need an equalizer hitch, it sounds like you need to lower your ball mount.

        Some people here say your ball mount needs to be between x height and x height, which is wrong.

        The correct ball height is the height that your trailer is level at when hitched to your tow rig- simple.

        It sounds like you need to get a drop mount and level out that load.

        Comment


          #49
          Jeff H wrote:
          ...The correct ball height is the height that your trailer is level at when hitched to your tow rig- simple.

          It sounds like you need to get a drop mount and level out that load.
          Leveling out the load sounds good, and is next on my list. That should raise the ball mount about 6 inches and help level out the trailer (see picture). But if anything, it seems like I need to raise the hitch a few inches. My plan is to add Monroe load adjusting shocks (see picture) if I keep the truck.

          I was evaluating the 3/4 ton trucks and I don't see how they would solve my unloaded front wheel problem. For example, the basic 1996 Ram 3500 offers 2000 pounds more in towing capacity than the 1500, but I do not see how it can be much heavier than mine in the front. Am I missing something here? I could see how a big dualy or Suburban 2500 would help and maybe that is what I will need to get.

          Attached files http://baylinerownersclub.org/media/....jpg[/img] http://baylinerownersclub.org/media/....jpg[/img]

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            #50
            I don't know if I mentioned it yet, but with the reworked drum brakes on the front axle, the new trailer master cylinder - it made a world of difference. The stopping is very good. I also replaced worn drum slave cylinders at the rear wheels of the truck and bled the fluid - that helps a lot too.

            wildman wrote:
            Leveling out the load sounds good, and is next on my list. That should raise the ball mount about 6 inches and help level out the trailer (see picture).
            I just towed the boat for the first time with the Load Leveler shocks on the rear. The rear sags much less now with the new shocks, and the unloaded ride is not much stiffer than it was before. In short, they work great!

            Comment


              #51
              2850Bounty wrote:
              Boy Dave, I couldn't agree more with that.

              I recall seeing my first weight distributing hitch back in the 60's, if memory serves me.

              At the time, I thought it was pretty neat.

              But then after giving it some thought, I determined that these were a band-aid fix for a much larger issue.

              I feel the same way today.
              I couldn't agree more! My opinion is even worse as the weight distribution hitches change the entire suspension geometry of the tow vehicle by stiffening the connection.

              The only real way out is to design the trailer right to start with. Make the tongue that long that you need very low tongue weight to start with. Design it so it's stable with 2-3% of the trailer weight and the rest just follows by laws of Physics.

              Last weekend I played with my trailer to determine the correct tongue length (besides installing the latest solar vent system). Not the best construction as I just added another piece of folding tongue which I would never permanently use. The boat was left just where it sat and only the tongue extended until I hit my 2.5% goal. The permanent installation of a 2.5' longer tongue moved to the highest priority! Sure, a longer trailer is more difficult to get around corners but you just have to know that you need a bit more space.

              Comment


                #52
                That old truck is overloaded, AND you need to have brakes on all four wheels of your trailer. The front tires were skidding because they were trying to take the entire force of the boat and trailer, which was too much.

                Comment


                  #53
                  SwampNut wrote:
                  That old truck is overloaded, AND you need to have brakes on all four wheels of your trailer. The front tires were skidding because they were trying to take the entire force of the boat and trailer, which was too much.
                  +1. 7400lb is too much weight for a 1/2 ton, imo.

                  Comment


                    #54
                    if I identified the truck right from the picture it's a Dodge RAM1500 and the lowest rating is 7550lbs. With a different gear ratio it can go up to 8500lbs. Not that I think it's safe to tow that much with it (I had one and know) but at least it's rated that way.

                    The biggest joke: the new Ford F-150 with the green scooter engine can be had rated up to 11300lbs!

                    What truck is towed by this trailer??

                    Comment


                      #55
                      Once you put fluids and normal gear in the boat, it's probably heavier than you think. Typical 26-28' boats weigh around 7k-8k alone. Add fluids and normal gear. Then add about 1500-1800 pounds for the trailer.

                      Comment


                        #56
                        2010 Ford F-150 TOWING (Pounds)

                        Regular Cab

                        126 inch WB 145 inch WB

                        4x2 4x4 4x2 4x4

                        GVWR

                        4.6L 2V 6,450 6,650 6,750 6,950

                        4.6L 3V -- 6,750 6,850 7,050

                        5.4L -- 6,800 7,050 7,200

                        5.4L HD pkg -- -- 8,200 8,200

                        Read more: [url]http://www.trucktrend.com/features/tech/163_0907_2010_ford_f150_tech_spec/viewall.html#ixzz2RWBxWVkp[url]

                        My 2004 F-150 has 4 wheel heavy duty disc brakes (4x2 4.6L) and 6500 would be max. For 7500-8000+, a bigger engine would do it, but I would opt for a F250, I think.

                        Comment


                          #57
                          when was the last time you bled the trailer brakes? you may not be getting full pressure to the wheel cylinders. Also, check for water intrusion into the master cyl. on the trailer

                          pat

                          Comment


                            #58
                            I had a 1985 chap 238 XLC on a E Z Loader 64 roller steel trailer. It weighed out at close to 7500 (public scale.

                            The trailer alone was about 1800#. I would say your rig is closewr to 8200

                            my trailer came with the brakes only on the front axle. It did exactly what you are experiencing.

                            SO, 1st, I added a weight distributing set up. Night and day difference in both braking and ride.

                            Heres the dynamics. When stopping, the CG of the weight shifts toward the front of the vehicle. In the case of the tow,the boat/trailer is almost 1 1/2 times the weight of the truck. So it presses down on the truck rear and lifts the front, thus letting the front skid. (It also makes steering a bit squirrely). The equalizer acts as a set of overload springs and cancels out some of the tongue weight.

                            Another thing. Mostly all newer trucks (My 2001 expedition included) are rated for towing with and w/o the equalizer. In my case its rated 8900# with a 800# tongue weight WITH the equalizer, and 5000 and 500 w/o. Besides, the equalizer set up really smooths out the ride a lot, as well as inproving handling and braking.

                            Now, the trailer itself. In 2005 Florida required brakes on all axles of a tandem trailer. I added the "kit" for the rear axle. Again, a night and day difference.

                            In your case, I would recommend going to wheel disk brakes on the trailer.

                            championtrailer.com out of Slidel La has kits for this with everything you need. Bite the bullet and get it right the first time.

                            The big problem with surge brakes is: The towing vehicle brake system myust work perfectly. Lifting of the truck front is not perfectly.......

                            When I replced my trailer on the 2452 I bought an aluminum, 8200# carrying weight, 4 wheel disks, radial tires, tortion suspension magic tilt. It rides so smooth that you can almost forget its there.

                            Another thing to consider. Lets say some bozo pulls out right in front of you. So you climb on the brakes but skid into him. You could be charged with at least partial fault, even though his act started the whole thing.
                            Captharv 2001 2452
                            "When the draft of your boat exceeds the depth of water, you are aground"

                            Comment


                              #59
                              captharv wrote:
                              ... Lets say some bozo pulls out right in front of you. So you climb on the brakes but skid into him. You could be charged with at least partial fault, even though his act started the whole thing.
                              Yes, that is one of my main worries. I'll look at making some changes.

                              Comment


                                #60
                                Not to discount the benefits of brakes on two axles, but looking strictly at California law, both the RoadKing website and the CA DMV say:

                                26302. (a) Every trailer or semitrailer, manufactured and first registered after January 1, 1940, and having a gross weight of 6,000 pounds or more and which is operated at a speed of 20 miles per hour or over shall be equipped with brakes.

                                (b) Every trailer or semitrailer manufactured and first registered after January 1, 1966, and having a gross weight of 3,000 pounds or more shall be equipped with brakes on at least two wheels.

                                (c) Every trailer or semitrailer manufactured after January 1, 1982, and equipped with air brakes shall be equipped with brakes on all wheels.

                                (d) Brakes required on trailers or semitrailers shall be adequate, supplemental to the brakes on the towing vehicle, to enable the combination of vehicles to comply with the stopping distance requirements of Section 26454.


                                ... and Section 26454 says:

                                [This table shows the maximum stopping distance in feet for certains types of vehicles when moving at an initial speed of 20 miles per hour.] *

                                [Vehicle type] * Maximum Stopping Distance (feet)

                                (1) Any passenger vehicle 25

                                (2) Any single motor vehicle with a manufacturer's gross vehicle weight rating of less than 10,000 lbs. 30

                                (3) Any combination of vehicles consisting of a passenger vehicle or any motor vehicle with a manufacturer's gross vehicle weight rating of less than 10,000 lbs. in combination with any trailer, semitrailer or trailer coach 40

                                (4) Any single motor vehicle with a manufacturer's gross vehicle weight rating of 10,000 lbs. or more or any bus 40

                                (5) All other combinations of vehicles 50


                                Interesting that this spec has not been revised in decades and seems incredibly lax.

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