Problem and solution for 5th wheel owners - hitch - Escape Trailer Owners Community

Go Back   Escape Trailer Owners Community > Escape Tech > Towing and Hitching
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 02-23-2015, 10:46 PM   #1
Site Team
 
Donna D.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Portland, Oregon
Trailer: 2014 Escape 5.0 TA
Posts: 6,824
Problem and solution for 5th wheel owners - hitch

Just spent four days camping. Hooked up easy/peasy... got to the park. Chaulked, level, landing gear down, ready to disconnect.

Pulled on the handle of the hitch, half of it came off in my hand! The jaws were sorta locked open. Not really safely hitched (can't tow!) and jammed to the point I couldn't unhitch.

I have an ETI-outsourced hitch in the bed of my truck. Happy with it (works as designed), however it didn't come with any users manual. I don't really know about the maintenance issues... guess I'd better find out.

Fortunately, my buds Dave&Kathie were also camping in the site next to me. Dave came over to help. The cotter pin holding the two pieces together were laying in the bed of the truck. Nothing wrong with it really, a bit rusty... jammed it back in to get both pieces back together, but the hitch was still jammed. Dave brought over a new (right size) cotter pin and WD-40. Both pieces back together and the handle working smoothly.

I didn't bother to find out if I could unhitch. Ten Forward was level, to me that's all that mattered.

When I got home, the handle moved as smooth as butter. Unhitched without any problems.

BUT, if you have a 5th wheel hitch of any brand, look it over. If yours is like mine, have extra cotter pins in your tool box and a lubricate, whether WD-40 or a silicone spray. I'm buying both before I hook up again. Thank goodness I wasn't boondocking by myself, I don't know what I would have done.

Lessons learned.

Thanks Dave!
__________________

__________________
Donna D.
Ten Forward
2014 Escape 5.0TA
Donna D. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 02:29 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
padlin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Southwick, Massachusetts
Trailer: 5.0 TA #6, 2012 F150 EB
Posts: 3,823
Don't have cotter pins on the B&W but adding a couple spare nuts and bolts in with the tools is a good idea, hadn't thought of a small can of penetrating oil, thanks for the heads up.

This is what I was told as far as maintenance...

Long time fifth wheelers, "Put grease on the jaws and penetrating oil on the jaw pins (the vertical pins on the top of the head)in the spring".

Per the manual.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg hitch.jpg (41.0 KB, 53 views)
__________________

__________________
Happy Motoring
Bob
padlin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 08:18 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Rochester, Massachusetts
Trailer: 2014 Escape 5.0TA
Posts: 112
Just bought 2014 TA and having hitch installed soon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
Just spent four days camping. Hooked up easy/peasy... got to the park. Chaulked, level, landing gear down, ready to disconnect.

Pulled on the handle of the hitch, half of it came off in my hand! The jaws were sorta locked open. Not really safely hitched (can't tow!) and jammed to the point I couldn't unhitch.

I have an ETI-outsourced hitch in the bed of my truck. Happy with it (works as designed), however it didn't come with any users manual. I don't really know about the maintenance issues... guess I'd better find out.

Fortunately, my buds Dave&Kathie were also camping in the site next to me. Dave came over to help. The cotter pin holding the two pieces together were laying in the bed of the truck. Nothing wrong with it really, a bit rusty... jammed it back in to get both pieces back together, but the hitch was still jammed. Dave brought over a new (right size) cotter pin and WD-40. Both pieces back together and the handle working smoothly.

I didn't bother to find out if I could unhitch. Ten Forward was level, to me that's all that mattered.

When I got home, the handle moved as smooth as butter. Unhitched without any problems.

BUT, if you have a 5th wheel hitch of any brand, look it over. If yours is like mine, have extra cotter pins in your tool box and a lubricate, whether WD-40 or a silicone spray. I'm buying both before I hook up again. Thank goodness I wasn't boondocking by myself, I don't know what I would have done.

Lessons learned.

Thanks Dave!

Glad all worked out well.

We just bought a 2014 5.0 TA and are about to have the same hitch installed in FL, as soon as we drop off our soon to be former Scamp 19. Attended Scamp Camp in Sebring and left yesterday, on our way to sell our Scamp. Had no intention of selling when we arrived, but saw the TA on the forum and the rest is becoming history.

Donna, do you have any other tips for new TA owners?

Thanks,

David
D&R_MA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 09:30 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Trailer: 2015 5.0TA
Posts: 241
Here is one tip. Buy a small lock to lock the handle in place on your fifth wheel hitch. Stops the possibility of it popping out. Also have heard stories about kids pulling it out and then watching ur predicament develope as u start to drive away.

ken
__________________
2015 5.0TA, 2015 Silverado 5.3
TRAILER NAME: " SUNBIRDS EGSK8P "
16 to 18 MPG CDN Towing
KEN AND DIANA, CALGARY
kvermeulen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 09:40 AM   #5
Site Team
 
Donna D.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Portland, Oregon
Trailer: 2014 Escape 5.0 TA
Posts: 6,824
Ken is right, you need a lock for the hitch. Buy a good one. When Dennis helped me hook up in Sumas he told me to not use the supplied lock from the company that put the hitch in the truck. It is a cheapy and could very possibly not unlock. He recommended a Master lock or other equal brand. Just need to make certain it fits in the holes. However that cheap lock is all I had, so I used it. Didn't lock it down though. Just twisted it around so it appeared locked. Worked.
__________________
Donna D.
Ten Forward
2014 Escape 5.0TA
Donna D. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 10:31 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 1979 Boler B1700
Posts: 9,041
From a previous discussion:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
I checked the instructions for the Reese 16K Fifth Wheel, and this is what it says about lubrication each trip:
Quote:
1. Lubricate skid plate surface of the hitch (see figure on cover of Manual) with automotive type chassis grease or use a plastic lube plate to provide a lubricated surface. Use engine oil to lubricate pivot points of moving parts within the hitch.
2. Plastic lube plates (Reese No. 74295) can be used to avoid messy grease. The plastic lube plate must not exceed 3/16 of an inch in thickness to ensure hitch will operate properly. Lube plates must be 10 inches in diameter or larger to properly distribute king pin weight.
I didn't find any reference to greasing the pin or jaw surfaces, so I guess it isn't needed.
The link still works, so if I have picked the right model, now you have the manual... which must have been misplaced or discarded during installation. It shows only one cotter pin, but there are lots of bolts.

It would make sense to me to lubricate sliding parts, but taking care not to get them gummed up with dirt-filled grease.

If a cotter pin came out, it was either broken (perhaps due to rust) or had never been installed correctly. I think either case calls for a complete examination of the mechanism for the condition of pins and fasteners.
Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 11:23 AM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Trailer: 2012 Escape 5.0
Posts: 55
I definitely recommend getting a nylon hitch plate. We towed a while without one and the hitch was very noisy. The plate made a huge difference.
shrncnddck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 11:48 AM   #8
Site Team
 
cpaharley2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: York, Pennsylvania
Trailer: 2016 2ndGen Escape 19' PRAIRIE SCHOONER pulled by 2014 Ram Hemi/8sp
Posts: 13,661
Welcome David, to our Escape world, you got a nice unit there, it was viewed here in Pennsylvania at the mini Escape rally in September, real nice set up.
__________________
Jim
The two most important days in your life are the day you were born and the day you find out why………..Mark Twain
cpaharley2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 11:51 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
Dave&Kathie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Portland, OR, Oregon
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 #8
Posts: 388
Quote:
Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post

Lessons learned.

Thanks Dave!
Your welcome Donna. Glad Dave could figure it out and had the parts. Although, we might have been able to find them at the Cannon Beach Hardware and Public House affectionately know by locals as the 'Screw and Brew'. Fun camp out. And thanks to Brian if that's the right manual, that should be helpful!
Kathie
Attached Images
File Type: jpg CBRV.JPG (164.7 KB, 46 views)
Dave&Kathie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 12:28 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Jim Bennett's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Trailer: 2017 Escape 5.0 TA
Posts: 11,933
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave&Kathie View Post
.... the Cannon Beach Hardware and Public House affectionately know by locals as the 'Screw and Brew'.
It would be interesting if they reversed the order of the locals name.
__________________

__________________
2017 Escape 5.0 TA
2015 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5L EcoBoost
2009 Escape 19 (previous)
“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” — Abraham Lincoln
Jim Bennett is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off






» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:59 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.