19' Trailer Weight Clarification - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 07-25-2011, 11:03 PM   #1
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19' Trailer Weight Clarification

Hello to all of the 19' or potential 19' owners.

After another great weekend in Bandon at the Oregon Fiberglass Trailer Rally, I have been bombarded with weight concerns on the 19'. I feel it is necessary to post this note to clear up some of the continuous issues.

One of the trailer owner's (and some extra helpers) at the rally generously volunteered their time to weigh trailers as they came into the park to help people understand the true weight of the trailer they are towing. As you drive into the park, the trailer axle is weighed (eq hitch bars removed if necessary) while still hooked to the tow vehicle, with the hitch weighed at your site when you unhook.

This method works great for all single axle trailers....not so great for a tandem axle with tortion axles...such as the Escape 19.

The proper way to get an accurate axle weight is use a truck scale that will accomodate both axles on the scale at the same time. Be sure to unhook equalizer bars. (if necessary)

In order to obtain a proper hitch weight, the trailer must be sitting parallel with the ground...not necessarily level. It is important to understand that each axle is independant of the other...they are not connected as an axle with springs are. When the height of the hitch is lower than parallel, some of the hitch weight is carried by the front axle. If the height of the hitch is higher than parallel, some of the front axle weight is carried by the hitch.

As an example, I weighed an owner's 19' in our new hook-up bay which is completely level. The trailer was loaded as they were just heading out on a week long trip. Nothing in holding tanks, a 1/4 tank of fresh water. They have 2 6V batteries located inside the front storage box and 2 full propane tanks. When sitting parallel to the ground, the hitch weighed 425 lbs. As an example to the customer, I raised the hitch with the front jack 1"....the weight went up by 35 lbs. I lowered it 1" below parallel and the weight went down by 35 lbs.

It is very important to have the 19' hitched to the tow vehicle at a height where the trailer will run parallel with the ground. If not parallel, at least a bit higher on the front rather than lower. A lower hitch height will result in a lighter hitch weight on the vehicle.

The average hitch weight for all of the Escape tow-behind trailers should be between 300-500 lbs.

I hope that all makes sense...

Escape safely,

Reace

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Old 07-25-2011, 11:42 PM   #2
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Re: 19' Trailer Weight Clarification

Great info, thanks for sharing, Reace. Makes sense on how to properly weigh the dual axles.
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Old 07-26-2011, 09:29 AM   #3
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Re: 19' Trailer Weight Clarification

Reace,
What was the weight of that trailer? In the post under "Adding solar and 2X 6 volts...." Some 19' owners have posted weights 3300-3800# which is approaching capacity. With a dry weight of 2500# what should the average 19" wet weight be out your door with all the options included? would it be close to 3000#?
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Old 07-26-2011, 11:28 AM   #4
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Re: 19' Trailer Weight Clarification

Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008
Reace,
What was the weight of that trailer? In the post under "Adding solar and 2X 6 volts...." Some 19' owners have posted weights 3300-3800# which is approaching capacity. With a dry weight of 2500# what should the average 19" wet weight be out your door with all the options included? would it be close to 3000#?
cpaharley2008, we have a nineteen foot Escape with most of the options added. We weighed ours several times and were quite surprised at how heavy we were finding it. We thought we travelled fairly light but our trailer was always over 3700#. Curious, we emptied out the trailer (everything except seat cushions and mattress) to find out what the weight of the trailer is empty (this was exactly how the trailer was when we picked it up from the factory). Our empty weight is 3130#. This did include the 2 propane tanks and 2 6V batteries on the tongue.

We usually measure the tongue weight before we leave home and generally find it between 410# and 460#. For this I use a Sherline tongue weight scale. The axle weight I obtain at the highway truck scales. I have found that disconnecting the equalizer bars makes a difference of about 30 kg on the axle weight. One thing I haven't found out yet is how much difference there is in the weight between the right side and left side.

Hope this helps.
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Old 07-26-2011, 02:06 PM   #5
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Re: 19' Trailer Weight Clarification

Yes, it does, thanks. It appears that the 19' Escape gains about 500 lbs during gestation, between inception and birth and is really closer to 3000#. Maybe I should look at the 17' model?
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Old 07-26-2011, 03:14 PM   #6
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Re: 19' Trailer Weight Clarification

Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008
Reace,
What was the weight of that trailer? In the post under "Adding solar and 2X 6 volts...." Some 19' owners have posted weights 3300-3800# which is approaching capacity. With a dry weight of 2500# what should the average 19" wet weight be out your door with all the options included? would it be close to 3000#?
I did not have an axle weight on that particular trailer...we were only trying to find an accurate hitch weight.

When you add options, you add weight. Adding a 12v outlet is not going to make a difference but adding things such as the A/C, thermal windows and extra insulation, additional window, solar panel, microwave, dual 6V batteries, storage box, cot, screen room, oven, etc...they can all add up. I would expect a 'wet' loaded trailer with all the popular options would add up to the 3000 lb mark.

This is one reason why we don't like to see vehicles with a tow capacity of only 3500 lbs tow the 19'. There are some however, they usually don't opt for any heavy upgrades.

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Old 07-26-2011, 04:03 PM   #7
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Re: 19' Trailer Weight Clarification

Of the options Reace mentions, we opted for A/C, thermal windows, extra insulation, extra window and dual 6V batteries and that put us over 3100#. If I was to do it over, I'd rethink the options.
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Old 07-26-2011, 08:06 PM   #8
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Re: 19' Trailer Weight Clarification

Something else to consider weight wise, is all they extra luxuries that we often bring along that are not really needed. Extra dishware, cooking stuff, extra chairs, etc.

This is one reason I hesitate to go to the front hitch box, as I can already carry everything I need in the trailer, and a few things in the tow, and still have room left for more. Organizing under the bed, combined with the larger access panel I put in have really helped access to this huge amount of space.

I, like a few others, come from a backpacking and canoeing background, and have learned to live quite comfortably with minimal gear.
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Old 07-27-2011, 02:00 AM   #9
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Re: 19' Trailer Weight Clarification

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Bennett
Something else to consider weight wise, is all they extra luxuries that we often bring along that are not really needed. Extra dishware, cooking stuff, extra chairs, etc.

This is one reason I hesitate to go to the front hitch box, as I can already carry everything I need in the trailer, and a few things in the tow, and still have room left for more. Organizing under the bed, combined with the larger access panel I put in have really helped access to this huge amount of space.

I, like a few others, come from a backpacking and canoeing background, and have learned to live quite comfortably with minimal gear.
I agree. Once we did our "empty weight" check, we were real picky about the stuff we put back into the trailer. We left out about 200#'s of that nice to have but don't really need stuff. We actually have quite a bit of empty storage space in the trailer. We won't go with the front hitch box either. With 410# - 460# of hitch weight, we don't want to add any more to the tongue.
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Old 07-27-2011, 11:36 AM   #10
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Re: 19' Trailer Weight Clarification

In Bandon I went to a truck scale on Hwy 101 south of town to weigh our 19ft. The trailer on the scale with all our gear weighed 3450. We had almost all the options offered including the front box.
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