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Old 04-20-2019, 10:26 AM   #161
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stratos175 View Post
I think you will really like the 21' and all the extra room you get and not climbing over each other to get out of bed.
I've been a State Farm customer for 38 years and most of those with no claims, last year we had a flood in a rental condo we own and just a couple of weeks ago I was rear ended and in both cases dealing with them has not been pleasant. No telling how much money I have paid them over 38 years, most times had a minimum of 4 policy's right now I have 6 through them and after I get this done with my car I'm done with them.
Glad your experience with them has been better then mine. Enjoy the new home on wheels.

Enjoy the journey.

Steve
Also being a long time State Farm customer , now only vehicles , the saying around our home is "you are not in good hands with State Farm " Pat
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Old 04-26-2019, 07:43 AM   #162
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Glad you both are ok, that’s the main thing.

I’ve always wondered about towing trailers with SUV’s.
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Old 05-19-2019, 05:12 PM   #163
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Tried a Hensley Cub Hitch

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
There have been a few discussions of the Hensley: see the results of a Google search in EscapeForum.org for "Hensley".
Although it appears that no one is towing an Escape with a Hensley hitch, the discussions are probably worth reading for anyone interested in the Jim Hensley design (Hensley Arrow, or ProPride 3P).
One Escape 21' owner (Art M.) did try a Hensley, but later went to no WD hitch at all, and "couldn't tell the difference in towing with or without the Hensley".
Our trial of a Hensley Cub hitch was brief for two reasons (that no longer seem sufficient):
1. They irritated me by not including both pins needed to secure the WD bars. It was embarrassing, when re-entering Canada for an excellent trailer-towing class, to have one bar fall off, going over a speed bump, when we were next in line for the border agent. I quickly got it bungy-corded on again, the agent was understanding and let us through.
2. My wife was unhappy with the complicated and large hitch hanging off the front of our 21'.

As had been suggested on the forum, I tried towing for about 150 miles with a simple ball, no anti-sway or WD, and had no problems with sway when passed by or passing truck-trailers on the freeway, or meeting them on two lane roads. I was then able to return the Hensley for a refund, just before the guaranteed return period ended.

I wanted WD and some sway protection so I then got a Reese Strait-Line hitch (I trust the name Reese, even if misspelled; it was what a nearby, highly-rated RV dealer carried and recommended; and its ball and its trunnion-WD-bars install separately, so the maximum weight for me to lift is less than with some other brands.) I still needed to have someone else do the lifting last summer when I had severe sciatica, which is now under control. I never figured out a reliable way to rank the anti-sway abilities of the hitches from the several available manufactures.

We're very pleased with the WD, once I cranked in sufficient weight distribution. The Jeep and trailer then seemed like a single unit; whereas, with insufficient or no WD, they fought each other when going over bumps. In retrospect, I never used sufficient WD with the Hensley hitch.

I think I gave up on the Hensley Cub too soon, and for insufficient reasons. It was quite convenient to use. Having watched Hensley videos, I found hitching up to be straight-forward, even as a newbie; although the crew at Escape found it very challenging. With a backup camera on our Jeep Grand Cherokee, it was easier to insert a tapered square rod into its receptacle on the Hensley than to place our current ball directly under the coupler.

Most important, we have since had sway issues twice:

First when I was driving two years ago and made too quick a steering correction back into my lane when I had started drifting out. After a few endless-seeming tense seconds, I got it back under control.
Second, on the current trip to Osoyoos, Kathy was driving on I-5 though the Siskiyou Pass area, following a truck whose speed varied significantly and annoyingly. She had decided to pass, but just before reaching the truck, our trailer started swaying. She had no choice but to brake to avoid hitting the truck, fortunately she did this gently which still made the sway worse. Her then steady-speed brought the trailer back under control barely short of losing it completely! [I've seen videos teaching that the professional way to handle trailer sway is to gradually accelerate until the sway ends, then slow down, and keep driving slower after that. Acceleration was not an option for us, with the truck just ahead and curves not far beyond!]

This second sway experience was much too close for comfort. We didn't realize how severe it was until we stopped and entered the trailer. We found all four drawers out on the floor upside down, the wardrobe open and our clothes spread around the floor, the heavy cookware from under the sink was at the front of the trailer, and some of the lowest cabinet doors had opened and dumped much of their contents. The only breakage of contents was a hard-plastic box full of sugar. Some cans were heavily dented. Miraculously, two bottles of wine and a glass jar of jam were rolling around on the floor without breaking. We re-stowed only breakable items and kept going, postponing the rest of the stowing and sweeping of the floor until we stopped for the night.

Damage to the trailer seems to be only to the drawers, whose keep-closed detents are now broken. We currently have to remove them and lay them on the bed when we travel.

I don't think we would have had these exciting experiences if I had kept the Hensley! We prefer that our excitement in camping comes from spectacular views, rather than whlle driving! We are very thankful that our experience was no worse, and no where near as bad as a few others report in this thread.
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Old 05-19-2019, 05:17 PM   #164
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Art M. View Post
Our trial of a Hensley Cub hitch was brief for two reasons (that no longer seem sufficient):

1. They irritated me by not including both pins needed to secure the WD bars. It was embarrassing, when re-entering Canada for an excellent trailer-towing class, to have one bar fall off, going over a speed bump, when we were next in line for the border agent. I quickly got it bungy-corded on again, the agent was understanding and let us through.

2. My wife was unhappy with the complicated and large hitch hanging off the front of our 21'.



As had been suggested on the forum, I tried towing for about 150 miles with a simple ball, no anti-sway or WD, and had no problems with sway when passed by or passing truck-trailers on the freeway, or meeting them on two lane roads. I was then able to return the Hensley for a refund, just before the guaranteed return period ended.



I wanted WD and some sway protection so I then got a Reese Strait-Line hitch (I trust the name Reese, even if misspelled; it was what a nearby, highly-rated RV dealer carried and recommended; and its ball and its trunnion-WD-bars install separately, so the maximum weight for me to lift is less than with some other brands.) I still needed to have someone else do the lifting last summer when I had severe sciatica, which is now under control. I never figured out a reliable way to rank the anti-sway abilities of the hitches from the several available manufactures.



We're very pleased with the WD, once I cranked in sufficient weight distribution. The Jeep and trailer then seemed like a single unit; whereas, with insufficient or no WD, they fought each other when going over bumps. In retrospect, I never used sufficient WD with the Hensley hitch.



I think I gave up on the Hensley Cub too soon, and for insufficient reasons. It was quite convenient to use. Having watched Hensley videos, I found hitching up to be straight-forward, even as a newbie; although the crew at Escape found it very challenging. With a backup camera on our Jeep Grand Cherokee, it was easier to insert a tapered square rod into its receptacle on the Hensley than to place our current ball directly under the coupler.



Most important, we have since had sway issues twice:



First when I was driving two years ago and made too quick a steering correction back into my lane when I had started drifting out. After a few endless-seeming tense seconds, I got it back under control.

Second, on the current trip to Osoyoos, Kathy was driving on I-5 though the Siskiyou Pass area, following a truck whose speed varied significantly and annoyingly. She had decided to pass, but just before reaching the truck, our trailer started swaying. She had no choice but to brake to avoid hitting the truck, fortunately she did this gently which still made the sway worse. Her then steady-speed brought the trailer back under control barely short of losing it completely! [I've seen videos teaching that the professional way to handle trailer sway is to gradually accelerate until the sway ends, then slow down, and keep driving slower after that. Acceleration was not an option for us, with the truck just ahead and curves not far beyond!]



This second sway experience was much too close for comfort. We didn't realize how severe it was until we stopped and entered the trailer. We found all four drawers out on the floor upside down, the wardrobe open and our clothes spread around the floor, the heavy cookware from under the sink was at the front of the trailer, and some of the lowest cabinet doors had opened and dumped much of their contents. The only breakage of contents was a hard-plastic box full of sugar. Some cans were heavily dented. Miraculously, two bottles of wine and a glass jar of jam were rolling around on the floor without breaking. We re-stowed only breakable items and kept going, postponing the rest of the stowing and sweeping of the floor until we stopped for the night.



Damage to the trailer seems to be only to the drawers, whose keep-closed detents are now broken. We currently have to remove them and lay them on the bed when we travel.



I don't think we would have had these exciting experiences if I had kept the Hensley! We prefer that our excitement in camping comes from spectacular views, rather than whlle driving! We are very thankful that our experience was no worse, and no where near as bad as a few others report in this thread.


Very sorry to hear that you had this experience, and very glad that you survived unscathed. One question: Do you know what your tongue weight was at the time of that incident?
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Old 05-19-2019, 07:07 PM   #165
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Originally Posted by Art M. View Post
I don't think we would have had these exciting experiences if I had kept the Hensley!
But you have no way to know, since you haven't duplicated the same move under the same conditions with and without the Hensley Arrow, right?
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Old 05-19-2019, 07:41 PM   #166
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“One question: Do you know what your tongue weight was at the time of that incident?”

Second question. How fast were you driving?
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Old 05-19-2019, 07:47 PM   #167
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Starting to get intense in here the main thing the OP are ok
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Old 05-19-2019, 07:53 PM   #168
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Starting to get intense in here the main thing the OP are ok


Agreed. However, the idea that a WDH is a magic bullet is dangerous, and is appropriate to question. My question as to whether he knows what his tongue weight was is an honest and genuine question, not blame or badgering.
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Old 05-19-2019, 07:58 PM   #169
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sclifrickson View Post
Agreed. However, the idea that a WDH is a magic bullet is dangerous, and is appropriate to question. My question as to whether he knows what his tongue weight was is an honest and genuine question, not blame or badgering.
Agreed.
When ever there is a towing incident, there is always a cause and a lesson for the rest of us.
Good teaching moments.
A time to pause and review our own towing practices.
Ed
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Old 05-19-2019, 08:23 PM   #170
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sclifrickson View Post
Very sorry to hear that you had this experience, and very glad that you survived unscathed. One question: Do you know what your tongue weight was at the time of that incident?
No. In the past it has been in the 500+ lb range, which is fine.

You did inspire me to go out and weigh it now, rather than waiting a few more days until I needed to unhitch. However, my Sherline Tongue Weight scale remained at zero – I noticed that the plunger was against the base, so the hydraulic fluid had apparently leaked out.

I hate when the first task in a Job is to fix the tool!
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Old 05-19-2019, 09:08 PM   #171
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sclifrickson View Post
Very sorry to hear that you had this experience, and very glad that you survived unscathed. One question: Do you know what your tongue weight was at the time of that incident?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
But you have no way to know, since you haven't duplicated the same move under the same conditions with and without the Hensley Arrow, right?
Right.

I do have confidence in the Hensley hitches for three reasons:
1. Their videos of a tow vehicle driving sort of a slalom course with a well-behaved trailer, but likely at a speed closer to 20-30 mph than 50-60 mph.
2. I simulated their trapezoidal array of hinges, nearly to scale, using Legos. I verified that the hitch did not bend when the trailer tried to change angle, but it did when the tow vehicle turned. If I were a good mechanical engineer, I might have been able to look at the design and understand that; but as a physicist, I had to try the experiment.
3. They have a good reputation with Airstream owners, particularly those towing trailers near 30' or longer.

One reason I was willing to give up the Hensley was because I could find no evidence of sway issues with Escapes, when I searched this forum several years ago. I wish that were still the case.
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Old 05-20-2019, 07:57 AM   #172
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Ironic to this conversation, my SIL is purchasing a Airliner Ranger 12 and last night called to ask if she really needed brakes and a WDH. I said that any trailer in Minnesota over 1500#'s has to have brakes (OK, it might be 2,000#'s, but it's about safety). She said the dealer claimed no brakes were needed because it only weighs 1,450#'s. We looked it up and sure enough the dry weight is 1,450#'s.

I asked her what does she think her options of dual LP tanks, air conditioner, lp grill, heat pump, water heater with 6 gallons of water, and furnace will weigh? Then I asked her to weigh her clothes, bedding, and food. We figured she'll be closer to 2,000#'s, perhaps more.

Her Kia can pull up to 5,000#'s, and 500# tongue weight, but the Airliner factory tongue weight is only 150#'s. She'll have a too light tongue weight unless she loads her camper properly. I told her it's imperative to load the camper properly! I have a Shureline Scale and will be finding her tongue weight.

Today she's calling her camper dealer to give him my phone # to call me. At a minimum she will be putting on a friction sway controller (it's not if the trailer will sway, but when). I've driven enough trailers in my life to know sway happens when you least expect it. Plus, she already has talked to Kia and they will be installing a 7-pin outlet plus a brake controller.

She will be taking the Airliner home (7 miles) and loading her Kia/camper up for camping. Depending on how much her hitch drops will determine if she needs a WDH. At a minimum she'll get a friction sway controller.

My SIL is Terry's best friend and I love her dearly. She also trusts me and did not hesitate when I explained to her why she needs to load the trailer properly and spend the money on brakes and sway control. Too often dealers send people down the road with accidents waiting to happen because they were afraid they would otherwise lose the sale.

Enjoy,

Perry
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