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Old 04-01-2016, 08:09 PM   #1
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Towing Concerns

We ordered our 19' trailer today--so excited! I had asked in an earlier thread about towing with a Honda Pilot and should have specified a 2013 Pilot AWD rated at 4500 lbs. The manual says not to use a weight distribution hitch. We currently tow a 17' Casita with a sway bar. We have never had any trouble. Is not having a weight distribution hitch a real concern with a larger trailer? Should we think about getting a vehicle that is rated for 5000 lbs? What are some tips for keeping the weight down besides packing less? Thanks. These posts are really helpful.
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Old 04-01-2016, 08:18 PM   #2
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Get yourself a Sherline tongue weight scale to accurately measure the weight on your tow vehicle.
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Old 04-01-2016, 08:45 PM   #3
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Towing Concerns

Lots of folks have towed a 19 with a Honda Pilot - Jim Bennett for one. You'll be fine. Just do as suggested and watch your tongue weight. And I mean, better to be slightly heavy on the tongue than slightly light.
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Old 05-19-2016, 11:56 AM   #4
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Do you know if Mr. Bennett uses a WDH, sway bar, or anything with the Pilot? We towed 17' Casita with 2011 Pilot with the sway bar. It worked great. Now we have the 19' Escape.
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Old 05-19-2016, 12:14 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seawolf42 View Post
Do you know if Mr. Bennett uses a WDH, sway bar, or anything with the Pilot? We towed 17' Casita with 2011 Pilot with the sway bar. It worked great. Now we have the 19' Escape.
I went the first 4 years towing with no WDH and had no troubles. Sure, there were certain towing nuances that did not bother me with regards to rough roads mostly.

For the last couple years, I started using the Andersen WDH, mostly for comfort for the sake of getting my wife driving more. What it did was smooth out the ride, and as many describe, made the tow/trailer together seem more like a single long unit.

If you have not towed much, I would recommend a WDH.
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Old 05-19-2016, 12:22 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
Get yourself a Sherline tongue weight scale to accurately measure the weight on your tow vehicle.
Jim, do you know if a pin weight scale exist for 5th wheel? I searched Amazon, didn't come up with anything.
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Old 05-19-2016, 12:29 PM   #7
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Jim, do you know if a pin weight scale exist for 5th wheel? I searched Amazon, didn't come up with anything.
The Sherline will work for that too. You just place the scale in the back of your pickup, and lower the pin onto it.

See page 12
https://docs.google.com/viewer?url=h...2Flm_book2.pdf
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Old 05-19-2016, 02:42 PM   #8
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Should we think about getting a vehicle that is rated for 5000 lbs?
The rating says little if anything about stability. A higher rating might just mean a stronger transmission or better engine cooling, in a vehicle which might be the same size and no more stable.

For an example, the first-generation Jeep Liberty is rated for 5000 pounds, but has shorter wheelbase and much less track width than the Pilot, and would be a very marginal tow vehicle for 5,000 pounds of trailer.
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Old 05-19-2016, 02:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scuba55 View Post
Jim, do you know if a pin weight scale exist for 5th wheel?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Bennett View Post
The Sherline will work for that too. You just place the scale in the back of your pickup, and lower the pin onto it.
Yes, the Sherline will work... and in the same way, any scheme for weighing a conventional tongue will work for a fifth-wheel, using the truck as a raised platform if needed (depending on the method).

A more direct link for the Sherline manual is lm_book2.pdf
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Old 05-19-2016, 07:35 PM   #10
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could you use a heavy weight bathroom scale for a bumper pull by putting it under the jack then raising it off the ball until the full weight was on the scale?
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Old 05-19-2016, 07:55 PM   #11
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If you're going to try that, put a piece of 2 x 10 between the jack post and bathroom scale. I crushed one and then bought the Sherline.
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Old 05-19-2016, 08:17 PM   #12
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Towing Concerns

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fox hunt View Post
could you use a heavy weight bathroom scale for a bumper pull by putting it under the jack then raising it off the ball until the full weight was on the scale?
Yes you can use a bathroom scale, but not directly - at least if you want it accurate. This guy shows how he did it:

Measuring trailer tongue weight with a bathroom scale
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Old 05-20-2016, 10:00 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Bennett View Post
The Sherline will work for that too. You just place the scale in the back of your pickup, and lower the pin onto it.

See page 12
https://docs.google.com/viewer?url=h...2Flm_book2.pdf
Thanks, Jim
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Old 05-20-2016, 02:36 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Fox hunt View Post
could you use a heavy weight bathroom scale for a bumper pull by putting it under the jack then raising it off the ball until the full weight was on the scale?
Yes and no.

This approach can work, but you will only get the right value if you measure with the tongue at the same height as when towing... which means pulling the tug out of the way and lowering back down. With a single-axle trailer such as the Escape 17', by the time you have raised the coupler enough to that the tug's suspension rises and the coupler just comes off the ball, the extra height will make the measured weight lower than it would be at towing height. Tandem-axle trailers behave in the opposite way.

Also, the reading at the jack will be higher than at the coupler (ball), so it needs to be adjusted (reduced about 10%) to get the right value.
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Old 05-20-2016, 06:46 PM   #15
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Here is my solution for using a bathroom scale.
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