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Old 10-02-2016, 11:01 AM   #1
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Snow chains

My Aliner is not designed to handle snow chains - damage to wheel wells. Since I have read of many folks winter camping, am I right in thinking the 17B is designed to use snow chains?
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Old 10-02-2016, 11:19 AM   #2
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To what purpose? Snow chains on drive wheels make sense because they drive the vehicle forward. If the trailer begins to fishtail in the snow it usually means you're driving too fast.
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Old 10-02-2016, 11:25 AM   #3
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In California (don't know about other states) if you are using a braking system for your trailer you are required to install snow chains if necessary.
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Old 10-02-2016, 11:55 AM   #4
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Wow, that's draconian. Guessing the "where posted" part is the controlling key.
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Old 10-02-2016, 12:03 PM   #5
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When I saw that my Aliner (Ranger 12' model) stated NO CHAINS I went to the local highway patrol and asked if I had to have chains for my trailer when required - told yes if you have brakes on the trailer or turn around and go home. With that in mind, I want to know if there are any restrictions for snow chains with the 17' Escape model (don't know if the model length makes any difference, but just to be clear, I am ordering a 17B).

Anyone using chains?? If so, recommendations for chain manufacturer, type, etc?
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Old 10-02-2016, 01:18 PM   #6
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Trailer Tire Chains????

Take a look at tractor trailers....when required to chain up they put them on the tractor drive wheels and nowhere else. Even the Ice Road Truckers only do the drive wheels. Here in VT you will occasionally see a plow truck or grader with chains on the front to help with steering if it is particularly icy but i never see people putting them on trailers...overkill in my book.
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Old 10-02-2016, 01:35 PM   #7
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I agree... it seems like overkill to me too.... BUT California requires chains on your travel trailer if it is equipped with brakes. I would really like to know if I will encounter the same situation as I have with my Aliner - manufacturer says NO CHAINS but California law requires it. Guess I will have to avoid potential chains required areas until I find out if chains can be used on the 17B. Anyone??
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Old 10-02-2016, 01:50 PM   #8
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There are chains, and there are "chain straps." To me, chains wrap around the entire tire and cross the tread at every number on the clock whereas a chain strap is a single chain length with a belt attached so it loops somehow through a gap in the wheel and around the tire at one spot. Had this back in the 50's-60's. Wonder if they are still made. Of course, see no way our Escape wheels would allow it. Regardless, still overkill.
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Old 10-02-2016, 01:51 PM   #9
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Anywhere that requires chains won't be seventy degrees, not a problem we'll be encountering.
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Old 10-02-2016, 01:58 PM   #10
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If the situation requires chains, I'm waiting it out or staying home.
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Old 10-02-2016, 02:06 PM   #11
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Do tractor trailers put chains on their trailers? They have brakes.
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Old 10-02-2016, 02:21 PM   #12
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If the situation requires chains, I'm waiting it out or staying home.
Agreed! Park yourself somewhere and sit it out inside your cozy trailer that you've turned the propane furnace on so it's toasty warm. And you have a bathroom to use and a propane stove to cook warm food on. While everyone else is fighting the roads and risking sliding off the road. And getting killed by the idiots in trucks that feel if they're in 4 wheel drive they can conquer any road conditions and drive way too fast and tailgate you and flash their lights at you and all that crud.

Yeah, I'll wait it out, thank you very much.

And if you can't and you really feel you need chains, I'd ask ETI about it. They know their trailers inside and out and can give you the best information about it.
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Old 10-02-2016, 02:27 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by parfsten View Post
In California (don't know about other states) if you are using a braking system for your trailer you are required to install snow chains if necessary.
The California law, like many laws, is unclear. But, a little research shows that when snow chains are required, you must have one axle chained if the trailer is equipped with brakes. This supposedly is to increase traction while braking.
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Old 10-02-2016, 03:23 PM   #14
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Kind of like the snow tires on front wheel drive vehicles, supposed to have them on all 4 so the back doesn't become the front.
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Old 10-02-2016, 04:21 PM   #15
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You're trying to relate common sense with California law. It just will not work. Motorcycles can split lanes but a trailer cannot exceed 55 mph? My daughter lives there and after one trip to see her, she now visits us.
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Old 10-02-2016, 04:42 PM   #16
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I have a lot of experience with chains in California and agree that they are required. Yes, I've towed trailers on snow covered roads. When you have to get somewhere and there is snow it's nice to have chains if you need them.

I did a search on here and I found a couple of 17B owners that carry chains. Any cable chain should work. I would just get the $25 Wal-mart specials.

The reason you WOULDN'T want to actually put them on unless you have to is obvious to anyone who has used chains though. They often come loose and slap against the tire well. On an Escape that would destroy the fiberglass pretty quickly.

I will carry chains and put them on if there is an inspector, and take them off as soon as possible.
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Old 10-02-2016, 04:52 PM   #17
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Agree CA is a major "nanny" state, however appreciate some of the rules in regards to safety and they don't allow a Semi-truck to tow 3 trailers like some states do.

This from CA DOT regarding Chain Requirements for semis:

What chains are required for an 18-wheeler?

An 18-wheeler (typically a combination consisting of a 3-axle tractor and 2-axle semitrailer, but including other combinations and axle counts) is required to have chains on:

All four tires on the main (usually front) drive axle
The two outside tires on the other (usually rear) drive axle
One tire on each side of the trailer (front or rear axle, or staggered OK)
No chains are required on the steering axle
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Old 10-02-2016, 05:58 PM   #18
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Parfsten, I suggest you choose cable chains that are S class rated for your Escape. They might also work fine on your A-liner.....and your tow vehicle. They are made for vehicles with limited wheel well clearance.
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Old 10-02-2016, 07:50 PM   #19
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Thanks!
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Old 11-06-2016, 10:54 AM   #20
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I am planning a trip to Sequoia NP in the next few weeks, so I've been researching and buying chains.

If you (might) need the chains for a single trip in the near future, buy a set from Amazon or Wal-mart (walmart has a bigger selection online than in stores; buy online and ship-to-store). Both places will accept returns within 30 days (perhaps longer for wal-mart). If you trip finishes within 30 days, and you didn't need to use the chains, just return them.

Take a look on craigslist or letgo; people are selling chains for cheap (even in snow-free Las Vegas).

I am not keen on being caught in Cali's 'chain control' check stations without chains to display. Buying some $20 chains off craigslist is cheap insurance.
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