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Old 07-19-2018, 12:58 PM   #1
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Wdh trick

Yesterday I saw an experienced camper unhitch his trailer by pulling the pin to disconnect the hitch from the receiver. Then he drove his truck forward, leaving the sway bars, etc all still hooked up and the hitch ball still in the coupler. He first raised the tongue using the electric tongue jack until tongue weight was neutral and the hitch pin was free to pull out. Took less than 30 seconds.

I asked about hitching up and he said it isn't any more difficult to back the receiver onto the hitch than the usual task of backing to align the ball under the coupler. And he doesn't have to mess around with the tension arms.

Maybe an old trick, but the first time I saw it.
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Old 07-19-2018, 01:05 PM   #2
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Maybe an old trick, but the first time I saw it.
First time I've heard of it also. Sounds interesting and I'll try it. Could be really handy.

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Old 07-19-2018, 01:13 PM   #3
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Given the trouble I have manually lining up the holes in the receiver and the WDH so I can insert the pin, I can't imagine this working for me.
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Old 07-19-2018, 01:18 PM   #4
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Given the trouble I have manually lining up the holes in the receiver and the WDH so I can insert the pin, I can't imagine this working for me.

I bet he has a dot or mark on the trailer frame or hitch that he lines up to with his backup camera.
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Old 07-19-2018, 01:30 PM   #5
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If I'm 1/8th of an inch out, I can't insert the pin. Not sure how one can be that accurate from the driver seat, even with a camera.
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Old 07-19-2018, 01:32 PM   #6
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Yes, stick around when he leaves and time him to verify the 30 seconds.....to hitch up and leave.
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Old 07-19-2018, 01:41 PM   #7
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I’ve done it. It works. You still have to disconnect the safety chains, breakaway brake cable and electrical apparatus. I would just as soon take the coupler off the ball using the power tongue jack to get to the neutral positiion, unlock and flip the coupler and raise a little more to drive away. Once you get in practice and a process becomes intuitive, nothing takes all that long. This includes, putting stabilizers down, hooking up to utilities, deploying the manual awning, etc. Go camping more, you’ll get better and better.
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Old 07-19-2018, 02:16 PM   #8
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Yes, stick around when he leaves and time him to verify the 30 seconds.....to hitch up and leave.
I wouldn't do it for that reason, I can disconnect pretty quickly. If it works easily I'd do it so that the massive hitch and greasy ball stayed with the trailer and not on the back of the tug if I run into town.

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Old 07-19-2018, 04:07 PM   #9
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I've done it in the past with mixed results, sometimes there's too much torque on the receiver and it wants to pull the whole trailer. I never really found hookup the normal way any problem so I gave up on this shortcut.
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Old 07-19-2018, 07:26 PM   #10
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I agree with Glenn. I've tried both ways, and it's easier to stick the coupler on the ball (you just have to be close) than line the 5/8" holes up enough to get a pin with a 1/32" shoulder in. I guess you could get a bigger hammer!
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Old 07-19-2018, 09:39 PM   #11
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I agree with Glenn. I've tried both ways, and it's easier to stick the coupler on the ball (you just have to be close) than line the 5/8" holes up enough to get a pin with a 1/32" shoulder in. I guess you could get a bigger hammer!
Agreed. Can't see how you'd align a square tube with a square post precisely or more easily than just using the coupler, unless you never moved the tow vehicle at all after unhitching.
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Old 07-19-2018, 10:23 PM   #12
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And, once the WDH was clear of the receiver, what's to stop it dropping some? So, you don't just have to worry about side to side, but elevation.
And then when you level the trailer front to back, it's even more unlikely to line up.
I just don't get it. Video please.
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Old 07-20-2018, 12:15 AM   #13
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We use an anti-rattle tightening doodad to take all the play out of our receiver-drawbar connection. It bolts on. The added complexity of removing it would make the hitch trick impractical for me. But I’d love to see someone else thread the needle
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Old 07-20-2018, 10:37 AM   #14
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I usually do the hitch ups by myself and doubt that would be something one could accomplish very easily without a helper guiding.
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Old 07-20-2018, 11:58 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gbaglo View Post
I just don't get it. Video please.
I'm not totally visualizing how it would work either. I searched quite a bit looking for videos but couldn't find any.

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Originally Posted by sclifrickson View Post
. But I’d love to see someone else thread the needle
I'm curious how it would work and I'll be trying it at some point.
When I do I'll have a small lining bar handy to get the holes totally lined up before trying to insert the pin.


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Old 07-21-2018, 09:57 PM   #16
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No video, but more info. The old camper laughed when I told him about the sceptics, "those people think too much! I suppose you can't do something new if you've never done it."

There is a lot of play in the end of the hitch that goes into the receiver. The Camper put his foot on the hitch and moved it inches. The hitch is being held up mainly by the ball in the coupler, which allows it to move left and right under hand or foot pressure. Once the hitch is started into the receiver it becomes somewhat self aligning.

It is done best as a two person job. He said it takes about five trips back to check if done alone.

A little safety trick he uses when unhitching is to leave the electric cord attached and activate the trailer brakes with the manual lever on the brake controller. Then he eases forward a foot to unhitch. Even though he chocks the wheels this gives added stability to the trailer in case it hangs up during separation.

The benefits are saving time, not messing with the tension arms or the greasy hitch ball, or removing the heavy hitch from the receiver.

The proof is in trying it.
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Old 07-21-2018, 10:37 PM   #17
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. The old camper laughed when I told him about the sceptics, "those people think too much! I suppose you can't do something new if you've never done it."

.
I think that situation is very common about a lot of things, "analysis paralysis". I think that I've even seen a bit of that on this forum.

I have a friend who's famous for over thinking what to do. Sometimes I get exasperated and say, "I could have it done in the time we've been discussing it."

I'm not planning on using my trailer in the next few weeks but now I'm curious about how it would work.

Ron
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