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Old 08-10-2011, 09:55 AM   #1
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Towing - ball height ?

I'm going to be towing a TandemTow trailer for my Spyder and car. The way the trailer is built, they recommend a 22" center of ball height. In order to get that, with a 2" drop drawbar, I will have to stack washers between the base of the ball and the drawbar. (Reversing the bar will be too high.)
The container the new ball came in only says that there must be threads showing when the nut and lock washer are tightened on the bottom of the draw bar. And the shank is long enough for me to stack washers above the bar.
For you experienced folks out there, is stacking washers beneath the ball OK to do??
Thanks.
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Old 08-10-2011, 10:09 AM   #2
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I would say no based on the fact that it sounds like the trailer will be relatively heavy.

I don't think you can get it tight enough to stop any play in the shank under load. It becomes much easier to shear metal when there is movement.

It sounds like you're pretty close as is. Wouldn't and inch or so be close enough?
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Old 08-10-2011, 10:11 AM   #3
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The small difference you would achieve with washers, is not worth chance of ball getting loose from the leverage that will occur by moving the ball base away from the mounting surface.

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Old 08-10-2011, 11:06 AM   #4
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Instead of a 2" Drop adapter, can you use a STRAIGHT adapter? I mean, they make them no drop at all.
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Old 08-10-2011, 11:21 AM   #5
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Ok, I understand, no washers.
As to the straight adapter (drawbar), if someone knows where to find them, please let me know. I've looked all over the net and the only ones like that are the forged 12000# ones.
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Old 08-10-2011, 05:29 PM   #6
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Try a U-Haul hitch store, but they are very common. Unless weight is a major issue.
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Old 08-10-2011, 05:40 PM   #7
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dshogman,

Try a Tractor Supply Company (TSC) store. They have heavy duty hitch ball mounts and hitch balls that you can't find at the normal places like: Walmart, U-Haul, Home Depot, or Lowes. Or, if you don't have a TSC store near you, try some other farm implement supply store.
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Old 08-10-2011, 08:52 PM   #8
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Definitely a no-no on the washers. If washers will get you close enough then I'm assuming your are no more than 1 inch away from their "optimal" height recommendation, in which case you are fine to trailer as is. If you are more than an inch away and you want to be exactly at the recommended height, then get a different drop as was stated in earlier replies. It is fine if it is a heavier duty piece as having over capacity load rating won't hurt a thing, as compared to having to light of a rating which again is a no-no.
Hope this helps.
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Old 08-10-2011, 11:42 PM   #9
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And if all that advice doesn't work for you, call Tork-Lift in Kent, WA at 253-854-1832 and ask for Karen or Matt. They will make you a receiver insert that holds a ball with no washers, towing whatever load weight you want, at whatever finished height you want. They have been doing it for many years with no issues, and they do all my towing/hitch work on all my toads/trailers. They will build it and ship it to you.
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Old 08-12-2011, 12:08 PM   #10
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There is a trailer supply store on I-5 south at exit 88, on the east side of the road. Brazals in Chehalis, WA also might be able to help. Give me a call if all the other suggestions don't work, and I will see what I can find locally, you could stop buy and pick it up, but my suggestion is to find a truck supply house/dealer up your way, they should have something you can use. Get one rated at at least 10K for safety, you will have a cumbersome load situation.
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Old 08-13-2011, 12:54 AM   #11
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In what I've read in several towing guides, the goal is to be within 2" or 3" of level. Sounds like you're fine.
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