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Old 02-17-2016, 07:46 AM   #15
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I have a good 1/2" vertical play using a lube plate.
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Old 02-17-2016, 08:33 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOldMan76 View Post
OK, it's a B&W hitch. Don't know any more than that, it came with the fifth wheel, and was pretty scuzzy, so I disassembled it, sandblasted it and painted, so brand name, model etc. is not discernable. It does side tilt. I am having a brake problem, trying to get the new brakes to work properly. Chasing low voltage right at the moment, still looking for a corroded or loose connection.
The banging occurred before installing the new brakes. I'll know more when I get this problem solved. I'm still concerned about the vertical1/2" between the
jaws and the plate at the bottom of the pin when latched. Will someone look at theirs and tell me if this is normal?
That is completely normal. It's provides the space needed to allow the hitch to properly dehitch. Sometimes if the tow vehicle and the pin are at an angel when hitching, you need that extra space for the jaws to close around it.
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Old 02-17-2016, 12:48 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Old-Biscuit View Post
Per OPs 1st post

I have a good 1/2" between the round plate on the bottom of the hitch pin and the hitch jaws.

That sounds like a problem to me.
Exactly what problem would that create??

Having no clearance is a problem as already suggested "#5, it is normal for the bottom of the pin to be below the bottom of the jaws. On older hitches that don't have side tilt capability (like my antique one), this gap is the only way for hitch to have some give when the truck and trailer are out of level. Without this gap it would be impossible to properly latch the hitch when hooking up on uneven terrain."
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Old 02-17-2016, 12:55 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by TheOldMan76 View Post
I'm still concerned about the vertical1/2" between the
jaws and the plate at the bottom of the pin when latched. Will someone look at theirs and tell me if this is normal?
Just measured mine, I have just over 2-1/2 inches from the underside of the lube plate to the larger diameter shoulder. Meanwhile, the bottom of the jaws on my hitch are just 2 inches below the top of the hitch plate. So, I also have just over 1/2 inch vertical spacing. Since I don't have a side tilt hitch I can tell you there have been a few times on uneven ground that even that much clearance wasn't enough for me to unhitch. But in that case, I just pull the two retaining pins and leave the hitch head attached to the king pin.
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Old 02-17-2016, 01:05 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by dayle1 View Post
Exactly what problem would that create??

Having no clearance is a problem as already suggested "#5, it is normal for the bottom of the pin to be below the bottom of the jaws. On older hitches that don't have side tilt capability (like my antique one), this gap is the only way for hitch to have some give when the truck and trailer are out of level. Without this gap it would be impossible to properly latch the hitch when hooking up on uneven terrain."

Reason for the questioning was an attempt to get OP to describe issue better.
It was NOT clear in earlier statements just where this 1/2" clearance was

NOW that OP has responded it appears that HE really doesn't have an issue with actual hitch but more of an issue with brakes.
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Old 02-17-2016, 01:55 PM   #20
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I agree. But I can't see my pin raising up completely off of the hitch, even during a fast backup and then hitting the brakes hard. The pin weight is massive. But I'm sure different set-ups vary a lot. My "clunk" jolt is from play forward and backward only. Never have seen my pin lift up in the extra vertical space it has.
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Old 02-17-2016, 03:23 PM   #21
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The more we read the more we learn. We read the pin dose not have wear grooves, we know that the vertical free play is normal. We know that there is excessive (?) play fore and aft. Is this an accurate assessment ? is the next step to reduce the fore and aft play. This condition is what causes chucking , but the OP didn't complain about that.

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Old 02-17-2016, 06:39 PM   #22
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Since it is B&W--their basic design has been the same for the hitch head for years--very stout and simple to hitch up. I am confused as to exactly what he is describing. The slide plates come in two thicknesses, and there should never be a need to double them up.

My B&W unhitching process--lift fiver until I see weight of trailer completely off hitch, open jaws, then pull out. Hitching up--have the fiver low enough to ride up the ramp into the jaws and back into the pin, which closes the jaws, pin the jaws closed. Very simple.

I would be surprised if the hitch head is worn out, but then, everything will at some point of use. Sure would like a picture of what the clearance looks like.

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Old 02-17-2016, 06:47 PM   #23
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There is no way there can be slop in a B&W hitch. They are tight that is the way it is.

I use a 1/8" slip plate on mine just so I can see some space between the kingpin plate and the hitch plate to know when I can release the handle. A 1/4" slip plate makes it pretty darn tight.
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Old 02-18-2016, 11:06 PM   #24
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I have been reading this and i am lost about hooking up with a closed hitch. if the jaws are closed i cannot see how you can get the kingpin to get past the closed jaw.
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Old 02-18-2016, 11:45 PM   #25
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I have been reading this and i am lost about hooking up with a closed hitch. if the jaws are closed i cannot see how you can get the kingpin to get past the closed jaw.

If hitch is a slide bar type then you HAVE to open/hold open the bar in order to allow king pin to go into hitch.

JAW type hitch
With handle 'unpinned/unlatched' so handle can move freely then when backing in the king pin can force the jaws open which will then slam shut around king pin when fully seated.
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Old 02-19-2016, 08:33 AM   #26
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shovelhead86,
I was wondering about that also--since my B&W has to be open to hitch, guess there are some that open when pushed by the king pin, as Old-Biscuit has said. I surely don't like that method but since I have never had one like that, don't know how well it would work.
Also, if slide-bar type, does that require 2 people to do the hitchup routine?
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Old 02-19-2016, 09:33 AM   #27
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Question Still got brake problems! I'M STUMPED

I had good bakes on the old fifth wheel, but pulled the hubs to check seals and bearings. Found 2 bad bearings, so good thing I did. Read about the forward adjusting brakes from Dexter, and we're planning a trip to Yellowstone in the spring, decided that although the brakes all looked good, it would be nice to have the self adjusting option for mountain travel. Bought all new backing plate assys from Etrailer and installed. Manually adjusted and went out for a test spin to "burnish" new brake shoes. No Brakes!! Conversing with the tech @ E brakes, I tested for voltage @ the magnets with the Tekonsha Prodigy fully applied - 6 volts. Aha, wiring problem!! Tech said first thing to do was ground each brake at the axle - did that, now 9 volts. Tech said I still had a wiring problem. Re-did every connection, removing wire nuts, applied solderless connectors and sealed with shrink tubing. No help. Controller puts out 12v when trailer not connected, assumed must be a high resistance connection somewhere. Truck has factory tow package, so 7 pin at bumper. P/O had installed an additional 7 pin in the inside left fender well. opened up both connector and cleaned attachment points, restriped wires and re-attached. No help. Crawled under the truck and found where the additional 7 pin had been tied in, and sure enough it was done with the bayonet type quick connects. Removed them all, used step down butt connectors to add the extra wires, and heat shrunk all splices.
I now have 10.5 volts at the trailer with the plug connected. Haven't tested back at the brakes, I don't really want to open up one of the splices I just did up so nicely. I believe I have redone every splice, and added several grounds.
Question now is: is 10.4 volts sufficient output to the trailer, or is the controller bad? Tech says 8 volts will not lock up the brakes. Also said that Dexter recommends doing 20 - 25 40mph to 20mph stops to "burnish" or set new brakes. Does this sound reasonable? How do they break the brakes on a new unit? I'M STUMPED
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Old 02-19-2016, 11:16 AM   #28
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Why would anybody subject their brake system to such abuse. Test the brakes for proper function and then drive normally. Never heard of such...
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