Is this trailer coupling missing parts or is it as-designed? - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 12-07-2018, 06:56 AM   #1
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Location: London UK, Labrador
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Is this trailer coupling missing parts or is it as-designed?

Hi all, hope this is the right place to post this but there seems to be some knowledgeable people on this forum that could possibly shed some light on a coupling that's come with my trailer. Even unladen it causes a loud knock as it slides backwards and forwards when accelerating/braking, but after dismantling I can't see how it would ever have not knocked...

The images can be found at this link, but please post replies in this thread:

Thanks in advance!

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Old 12-07-2018, 09:03 AM   #2
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Location: Benton County, Iowa
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 Classic Number 6, pulled by 2018 Toyota Highlander
Posts: 5,151
I’ve never had one like that but it would be my opinion that when you have age, a large
spring, seals and the action of piston surge there is a lifespan on the parts. Your spring may be “tired” and not meeting the original compression strength needed to keep it from “bottoming out” and depending on clearances on the steel piston and grease seals , she might just be worn out. If there’s adjustment with the center bolt, it might just be “all used up”. Next question is do they still make them, are parts available and finally can it be rebuilt? I doubt you’re missing parts but probably can’t be determined without some sort of exploded drawing on the assembly and it would be helpful to have the operation and maintenance instructions as well. If a person could find a hitch and frame shop with a couple old guys still there or someone who knows where they went when they retired, you might have a chance for a first hand knowledge conversation. Sorry that’s all I got.
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Old 12-07-2018, 10:43 AM   #3
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Location: Hillsboro, Oregon
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That looks like the coupler type that is used in Europe for a 50mm ball. Does it have any EC/EU markings on it? That would date it from 1998 or later; kinda doubt parts would be easy to find.

I'd just replace it.

A 50mm ball measures 1-31/32 inch compared to the 2-inch ball used in the USA.
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Old 12-07-2018, 11:42 AM   #4
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Yes, it's certainly a Euro-style overrun coupler. There shouldn't be any free play, and when pushed back it shouldn't stroke without pulling on the brake rod. I agree that the coupling head (the actual coupler, rather than the brake assembly) shouldn't be able to move back far enough to hit the body of the brake assembly.

This is definitely a case where original manufacturer's documentation is required - I would just read the markings on the coupler and search the manufacturer's website for a service manual.

Tom, in case you haven't realized this yet... this forum is for people interested specifically in the Escape brand of travel trailers, built in Canada. That style of overrun coupler is very rarely used in North America (only on a few Euro-designed trailers sold here, such as an early T@B), and completely unlike the couplers used on an Escape or other typical North American trailers. Very few people in this forum will have ever seen an overrun coupler system disassembled... I haven't.
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Old 12-08-2018, 03:53 PM   #5
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Many thanks all for the input, much appreciated. Brian - actually I hadn't realised Escape was a brand of trailer, thought the name was a play on escapism

Iowa Dave - the old shop guys are exactly who I was after by posting on the net appreciate the pointers.

This is indeed a Euro-style trailer - I'm in London (and not the one in Canada!). I've had some similar input from elsewhere, apparently this coupling is likely to be off of a small British caravan from the 70s It's in the bin now and a new one is on order...

P.S. Kudos on the cross-continental trailer knowledge!
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