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Old 12-20-2015, 03:59 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
I find that this number changes, dependent upon what you carry in the tug as well as how the trailer is packed and if you have liquids in the tanks. I have had to switch stingers after hooking up and realizing BlackJack was too high or too low. Ideally an adjustable mount would be recommended.
The actual value changes with loading of the tug, but the correct or ideal value doesn't.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jubal View Post
When you use the term "stinger" are you referring to the ball mount ?
stinger
= ball mount (the term the manufacturers use)
= drawbar (although this is not a proper use of this term)

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Originally Posted by fudge_brownie View Post
The proper method to determine ball height is to connect the tow and trailer and then measure four corners of the trailer. The proper height is obtained when all four corners are equal, in other words level. The difficulty coming up with a number is the variables each combination will have. Beside the items mentioned there will also be sag on the rear of the tow, length of the stinger, weight of the WDH (if present) and loading of tow and vehicle.

My point is, the coupler height is irrelevant, what is desired is the height of the ball when the combination of tow and trailer are level.
But the top of the coupler is the top of the ball. If what you're saying is that you need the trailer connected to the tug because the WD system applies a lot of force to the trailer... then okay, there is a tiny effect there, but none for someone not using a WDH. Even with a WDH, the 100 pounds or so that the WDH adds to the trailer axles won't change their height enough to reliably measure.

What the tug does when loaded will determine how much drop (or rise) you need in the ball mount, but it doesn't change the right height for the trailer tongue/coupler. That's strictly a matter of the attitude which compresses the two suspensions (leading and trailing axles) equally.

Once you have the right height for the coupler/ball, you do need to consider loading on the tug - and action of the WDH if used - to get the right ball mount or WD hitch head setting. This is certainly more straightforward without WDH: just get the ball mount with the drop (or rise) needed for the ball to hit that desired height with the weight of the trailer tongue on it. Until you have the trailer, you need to guess how far it will push the ball down, or put that much load on the hitch (have to people stand on the hitch or bumper?) and see for yourself.

By far the easiest approach is to measure for the right coupler height is to have the trailer unhitched on level ground and just use the tongue jack to adjust the trailer's frame to level. Remember that every Escape has a step up in the frame so you can't just compare the frame at the four corners; either measure to the forward and rearward ends of the main frame section (the part to which the axles mount), or measure the corners and shoot for 4 inches higher (for models and years with a 2"x4" main frame) at the rear.
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Old 12-20-2015, 05:40 PM   #42
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Well, then, I guess that nails it down to getting a 2016 Tundra! I did not realize the differences. We test drove a 2016 TRD end of October, as well as the regular Tundras (2015 models). I really like the feel of the TRD much better. And I drove it on the highway, as well as side roads and bumpy roads and sharp corners and all that. Our 2000 Tacoma is a TRD and I'm driving a FJ, so maybe that's why I liked the TRD better. But heck if I know if that's why - I just know I liked it better, as did the hubby.

Thanks for the info!
Check the sticker for the 38 gal fuel tank and brake controller if you decide to go with a SR or SR5. Basically if it has front bucket seats it should have the upgrade but the bench seat models may not. All the upper level models and upgraded SR5 should include them.

600 mile range with the 38 gal. when not towing.
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Old 12-20-2015, 06:10 PM   #43
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I find my fill up range is more accurately determined by my body, as I age gracefully. I doubt I could go 10 hours without stopping, particularly after consuming coffee. Sometimes I look forward to that 350-400 mile range in my Ram while towing.
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Old 12-20-2015, 06:38 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by Jubal View Post
When you use the term "stinger" are you referring to the ball mount ?
Cute terms abound. Just like using frig for fridge instead of a soft swear word.

I have always referred to it as a ball mount, and I bet almost exclusively any manufacturer will too.
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Old 02-05-2016, 09:26 AM   #45
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One factor that I did not see mentioned here, is that some TV manufacturers REQUIRE that a WD hitch be used when the tongue weight exceeds 500 lbs. I don't expect most Escapes would exceed that, but it could happen depending on loading ...especially with the optional cargo box. In addition, hitch manufacturers point out that weight carried in the TV behind the rear wheels affects the TV like tongue weight. I never used a WD hitch with my Casita or a 19 ft. Keystone, but am looking for one now as my Bigfoot 21 is heavy like a tank and causes 200 pounds to transfer from the TV front axle to its rear axle in addition to 700 lbs. tongue weight. And that on an F150 with heavy payload package and 11,000 plus lb. towing capacity.
PS That's why I am considering an Escape.
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Old 02-05-2016, 10:39 AM   #46
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Would definitely have one with that kind of Footprint
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Old 02-05-2016, 12:54 PM   #47
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We sold our 2008 Tacoma on which Reace set up the WDH for us when we picked up our 17B. I just went out to start adjusting the WDH on the new 2016 Highlander. The potential problem I see is that the hitch is sticking out far further than it did on the Tacoma. The receiver on the Tacoma was recessed below the bumper whereas with the Highlander it is out past the bumper.

I’m attaching a couple of pictures. One shows the hitch pushed in to the farthest possible with existing holes and the second shows where I’d like to get it into. I’m thinking of drilling another hole there in the hitch shaft and it shouldn’t effect strength because the existing holes will be inside the receiver.

Anyone foresee any problems with doing that? After drilling and attaching then I'll go through the WDH adjustments to get it correct for the new setup.
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File Type: jpg IMG_0836.jpg (365.1 KB, 6 views)
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Old 02-05-2016, 02:00 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by thoer View Post
I just went out to start adjusting the WDH on the new 2016 Highlander. The potential problem I see is that the hitch is sticking out far further than it did on the Tacoma. The receiver on the Tacoma was recessed below the bumper whereas with the Highlander it is out past the bumper.
... I’m thinking of drilling another hole there in the hitch shaft and it shouldn’t effect strength because the existing holes will be inside the receiver.

Anyone foresee any problems with doing that?
I noticed that with the factory Highlander receiver when a friend of mine was buying one. The receiver is nicely integrated, but I'm not a fan of the sticking-out position. Some of the aftermarket receivers are further down and forward.

I don't see any problem at all with drilling a better-placed pin hole - this is commonly done with ball mounts. The shank is probably not heat-treated, but in case it is be prepared to go slowly and lubricate the bit to make drilling easier and to avoid heating.

In many cases the limitation is that the forward end of the ball mount or WDH shank either bottoms out in the receiver or protrudes though and runs into the spare tire. Since you are able to push it in now, obviously this isn't a problem in this case, due to the receiver placement.

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Originally Posted by thoer View Post
After drilling and attaching then I'll go through the WDH adjustments to get it correct for the new setup.
Good catch - the change in ball position will change the WD setting required, although I don't know how much.
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Old 02-05-2016, 02:06 PM   #49
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I do not have a Weight distribution thing but I did that (drilled holes) to extend the stinger farther out. Did not like the feel of it when towing and went back to the snug-up position.
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Old 02-05-2016, 02:35 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shotgun View Post
One factor that I did not see mentioned here, is that some TV manufacturers REQUIRE that a WD hitch be used when the tongue weight exceeds 500 lbs. I don't expect most Escapes would exceed that, but it could happen depending on loading ...especially with the optional cargo box.
My Toyota Sienna is an example of that: it requires WD over 350 pounds of hitch weight. This can be due to structural limitations in the hitch, structural limitations in the tow vehicle structure, or (much more likely) a concern by the tow vehicle manufacturer that rear axle load will be excessive.

In many cases the hitch manufacturer also has a similar requirement, due to the structure of the hitch.

Quote:
Originally Posted by shotgun View Post
I never used a WD hitch with my Casita or a 19 ft. Keystone, but am looking for one now as my Bigfoot 21 is heavy like a tank and causes 200 pounds to transfer from the TV front axle to its rear axle in addition to 700 lbs. tongue weight.
That suggests that this F-150 has a ratio of hitch overhang (from the rear axle) to wheelbase of 200/700, or 29%, which sounds about right (the overhang is the same for all variations of the truck, but there are at least three wheelbases available). Since this is just a leverage issue, you can always anticipate the load transfer from front axle to rear this way: just multiply the hitch weight by the overhang to wheelbase ratio.

Quote:
Originally Posted by shotgun View Post
In addition, hitch manufacturers point out that weight carried in the TV behind the rear wheels affects the TV like tongue weight.
The hitch is not affected by load in the vehicle, and hitch manufacturers don't even test their products installed on the tow vehicle. I would completely ignore anything a hitch manufacturer says about tow vehicle capacities or dynamics.

There is a legitimate issue here, but it is not as simple as cargo=hitch weight. The potential issue is rear axle load, since both cargo in the back (and to a lesser extent passengers or cargo further forward) contribute to rear axle load. Some manufacturers - particularly of vans and SUVs - provide a table in the owner's manual showing various numbers of passengers and the remaining trailer weight and tongue weight capacity. To to this, they assume specific weight of passengers, a specific seating arrangement, and a specific placing of cargo... none of which will be quite right for any real situation.

A more accurate approach is to simply check the rear axle load, and stay within the hitch weight rating of the vehicle (which does not depend on cargo or passengers in the tug) and the (rear) Gross Axle Weight Rating of the tug.
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