equalizing hitch?

Discussion in 'General RVing' started by riverhunter, Apr 17, 2006.

  1. riverhunter

    riverhunter New Member

    hi, i will be pulling a jayco 18 foot trailer gross weight of about 3500lbs with a 2006 ranger sport 4*4, which is rated about 5200 tow capacity!....will there be an advantage of getting the extra stuff(ie equalizer) or should i just try it first with the level 3 package that will come with the truck?...the truck will not arrive for another month or so, but im'getting the new trailer in a day or so!.....just thinking ahead..thanks larry :)
     
  2. hertig

    hertig Senior Member

    equalizing hitch?

    One option is the PullRite hitch which claims to make a travel trailer pull 'like a 5th wheel'. Certainly looks to be easier to hook up since the hitch pivots instead of being fixed to the bumper. As to 'equalizer' hitch, as I understand it, that is for when you are close to the weight limit, and it is designed to transfer some of the weight from the rear axel to the front axel. I'd be more concerned with the 'anti-sway' provisions of my hitch.

    I've never towed a travel trailer, but I've heard that it can be 'exciting' without the right hitch. Make sure you've got the right setup before setting out; just trying anything can be 'destructive testing'. Ask the people who went down a minor hill in Missouri and their trailer decided to go down first...

    Keep in mind that the 5200 pound tow capacity is with an empty tow vehicle (no cargo, no accessories, no passangers). You should be ok unless you really load the truck with people and stuff.
     
  3. BarneyS

    BarneyS Senior Member

    equalizing hitch?

    I think you might be overloading your receiver if you try to tow that trailer without using a WD hitch. The tongue weight will probably be close to 400 or more pounds by the time you are ready to travel. Don't know what the Ranger receiver is rated for but to be safe you should use a WD hitch. A good hitch for your application would be the Equal-i-zer hitch in the 600lb capacity model.http://www.equalizerhitch.com/
    This hitch combines weight distribution with sway control in one easy to use package. I am assuming here that the Jayco you are getting is not a pop-up but a regular travel trailer. If it is a pop-up then the above hitch would probably not be best.
    Reese makes a single bar WD hitch that will work well with pop-up trailers. You can check them out here. http://www.reeseprod.com/

    In either case, do not be mislead by the "Tow Rating" of the truck advertising! In the real world, that rating is fictitious and does not really tell what a vehicle can tow effectively. The best way (other than actually weighing your rig) to determine what your truck can tow is to take its Gross Combined Weight Rating, subtract the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating, take about 80% of that figure and the remainder is what you can realistically expect to tow comfortably.
    The GCWR can be obtained from you owners manual in some cases, in others it may be necessary to contact the manufacturer or dealer. The GVWR is printed on the sticker on the door panel.

    I know I would not want to try to tow a 5200lb travel trailer with a Ranger! There are also Trailer frontal area requirements that must be watched along with weights.
    Hope this helps you out.
    Barney
     
  4. riverhunter

    riverhunter New Member

    equalizing hitch?

    thanks all!! :) ....barney, can you talk more about Trailer frontal area requirements?..first i ever heard of that!...thanks larry
     
  5. BarneyS

    BarneyS Senior Member

    equalizing hitch?

    Hi Larry,
    The trailer frontal area requirements are usually posted in the trailer towing section of your owners manual. Most limit the frontal area to around 60 sq feet. That means a trailer 8ft wide can be about 7 feet tall or vise versa. This is important because a travel trailer will have a much larger frontal area than a boat or a flat bed trailer with a load of steel, even though they may all weigh the same. They certainly will not tow the same though! :eek: An Airstream trailer will tow easier than my Sunnybrook for instance, because the frontal area is less and shaped more streamlined.
    Barney
     
  6. Ed H.

    Ed H. New Member

    equalizing hitch?

    I will second Barney's recomendation of the Equal-I-Zer system.I looked at several different systems and Equal-I-Zer was the least expensive and easiest to figure out. The instructions were clear and the parts fit together nicely.
    I have a 23 foot Wilderness that I have towed with a Toyota 4Runner, a Chevy Silverado and a GMC cube van. The Toyota was almost a hazzard in the yard without the weught distribution/sway control. The Chevy might have been ok for a short trip, but I never tried it. Even the mighty GMC (12,000 lb GVW, 17,000 lb GCWR) is a little hairy without (yeah, I tried that one once running across town). With the system in place, the baby tows beautifully. The Toyota was still not quite up for Turnpike speed, but good otherwise, the Chevy was fine and the GMC almost forgets the trailer's there.
     
  7. Johnny-O

    Johnny-O New Member

    equalizing hitch?

    riverhunter, With any large trailer an equalizer hitch is definitly recomended. The purpose of this hitch is to help distribute some of the tounge weight to the front wheels of the tow vehicle. Otherwise the rear end of the truck would squat and the front end would slightly elevate , causing the truck to wander all over the road. When installed and set up right, the truck should set level. LOL and happy towing. The Boz
     

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