wdh hitch and backing up - Page 2 - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 03-25-2016, 04:02 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iowa Dave View Post
If you have a Pro series hitch and you fail to take your wife's advice telling you not to take a curvy road along the side of a West Virginia mountain, and it ends in a dead end against a gate with no turnaround, you will not worry about the hitch as you back up a quarter of a mile with your wife walking along the side of the tow rig in the gathering darkness. Your worry priorities will be crystal clear at that time. And it ain't the hitch.
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Old 03-25-2016, 05:25 PM   #12
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The weight-distributing (WD) hitch doesn't care which way you are moving. The only relevance of backing up is the angle from straight of the coupling between tug and trailer that you might reach. When driving forward the angle depends on the steering angle of the tug, the tug's wheelbase, and the length of the trailer (from coupler to axle)... and this should never be so acute that is would cause a problem. When backing up, you can "jackknife" the rig until something hits.

That much sharper angle which can be reached when backing can be far enough to cause problems with both WD hitches and those cheap friction devices that some people use to reduce sway... which is why the friction devices always seem to come with a warning to disconnect (and remove) them before backing up.

This is Jon's example of what can happen when you get to an angle which is to sharp (which you can only do in reverse):
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vermilye View Post
The only time I had a problem with it was when I did an extremely sharp turn (repeatedly back & forward) to get out of a tight situation. The bar turned far enough that it fell out of the receiver.
If you're an an angle this sharp, you can't keep going back without it jackknifing even more, so you wouldn't often deliberately do that.
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Old 03-25-2016, 05:31 PM   #13
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[QUOTE=gocamp;134074]The escape options list the equalizer and e2 as wdh options. Anyone know if you are able to back up and manuver as you are backing without taking off the wdh bars? I didn't know how forgiving they were without binding and putting unwanted stress on the trailer frame over time from backing up. Didn't the Anderson chain model stress the escape frame.....and escape dropped this option? I would rather go without than having to disconnect the bars before every backup and gas station manuver. Thanks in advance. I've never owned a wdh before.
What does escape recommend for those that have asked?[/QUOTE

The "equalizer" you refer to that Escape sells is actually a Pro series, I believe, not the brand that has a similar name. It is bars and chains and ours works fine including for backing.
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Old 03-25-2016, 06:09 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gocamp View Post
The escape options list the equalizer and e2 as wdh options.
Quote:
Originally Posted by float5 View Post
The "equalizer" you refer to that Escape sells is actually a Pro series, I believe, not the brand that has a similar name. It is bars and chains and ours works fine including for backing.
Good point - Escape has always referred to the weight-distributing hitch that they offer as an option as an "equalizer", but it has never been an Equal-i-zerŪ product. This is the current photo from the Escape options web pages:

It is a conventional style of WDH, currently a Pro Series. The photo shows the round-bar style, but as of last fall Escape was specifying the Pro Series 600 Trunnion (conventional WD hitches are either "round bar" or "trunnion", depending on how the bars go into the head).

The second WDH offered as an option actually is a product of Progress Mfg. Inc., the maker of the Equal-izerŪ. The Fastway E2 is basically the frame brackets of an Equal-izerŪ, but with a conventional WD head (round-bar or trunnion available).


The angle of turn is too sharp for a hanging-chain WDH such as the Pro Series when the chain angles get too far from vertical. The angle is too sharp for the E2 when the bar on the outside of the turn comes right out of the frame bracket, or when the bar on the inside jams because the thicker part of the bar binds in the frame bracket's retainer.


The "Sway Control Bar" offered as an add-on to the base WDH (for an additional $125) is presumably a typical friction-type bar-and-clamp device (Pro Series 83660). The angle of turn is too sharp for this type of device when either the bar pulls right out of the clamp (on the outside of the turn) or the bar jams (or "bottoms out") because there's not enough room for it in the device (on the inside of the turn).
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Old 03-29-2016, 04:24 PM   #15
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If you go to a web site that sells many WD and sway control hitches like etrailer.com, you will see that one cannot back up with many of them. I think the problem is with the sway control part that is a separate device from the bars. I read horror stories of people bending things. Best to check the manufactuters web site.
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Old 03-29-2016, 04:31 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shotgun View Post
I think the problem is with the sway control part that is a separate device from the bars.
Yes, this part:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
The "Sway Control Bar" offered as an add-on to the base WDH (for an additional $125) is presumably a typical friction-type bar-and-clamp device (Pro Series 83660). The angle of turn is too sharp for this type of device when either the bar pulls right out of the clamp (on the outside of the turn) or the bar jams (or "bottoms out") because there's not enough room for it in the device (on the inside of the turn).
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