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Old 10-17-2013, 12:22 AM   #1
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Without Wgt Distrb Bars

Towing with 2500hd Duramax with airbags. Tongue weight of trailer is a shade of 850 lbs loaded. Do I need weight distributing bars? Just curious because I always use them
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Old 10-17-2013, 05:45 AM   #2
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You should not need them but they certainly do help
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Old 10-17-2013, 06:48 AM   #3
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What is the attitude of your truck when hooked up? If the front goes up significantly, then you need a WDH as the rise unloads your front tires. They are a pain, huh?
Measure the distance of the top of the wheel well to the ground, both front and rear without the trailer. Repeat with the trailer. I would say if the combined difference of the front and rear is more than one inch, a WDH is needed, but only by checking axle weights will you know for sure.
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:07 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by fvstringpicker View Post
Towing with 2500hd Duramax with airbags. Tongue weight of trailer is a shade of 850 lbs loaded. Do I need weight distributing bars? Just curious because I always use them
Do you have a hitch that will support an 850 pound tongue weight? My Wdh will support 600# w/o bars, 1200# w/bars
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Old 10-17-2013, 09:13 AM   #5
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A 2500 should have a Weight Carrying (non distribution type) hitch of 1,000 -1,200 lbs. So, yes you CAN choose not to use it. Airbags you have will keep the back from dropping, but will NOT keep the front from lifting (rear axles become the fulcrum and weight of trailer is leverage to lift front). The Duramax is heavier than a gasser, and should keep the front down. Your rear axle will be supporting ALL 850 lbs PLUS whatever is in the bed. Whatever you have inside the cab will be distributed to both axles, SO you can get real close to your RAGWR easy.

Since you have a WDH and know how to use it, you can distribute weight evenly to both axles (or just enough forward to meet your needs) and carry extra in the bed or cab of the truck without fear of going over the rear axle gross weight rating (RAGWR).

I have a Dodge 2500 and use my WDH because my tounge weight is at 1,000 lbs or better depending what I have in the toyhauler garage. I do however, have a load CARRYING hitch good for the 1,000 lbs that I use to move the trailer in the yard for when I am needing to get something from behind it and do not want to hook up the WDH.
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Old 10-17-2013, 11:44 AM   #6
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I don't/can't use WD hitch on my VW because the computer that controls the ride hight on the 4 airbags doesn't play well with it.

I get no nose lift or sag in the back with my 26'TT. My empty weight distribution is something like 65/35 front/rear empty, so hooking up a trailer get's me closer to 50/50. And anything inside the vehicle doesn't effect that much since it's between the axles. That's the advantage of an iron block V10 diesel over the front wheels.
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Old 10-17-2013, 01:05 PM   #7
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I think I may be over tentioning the bars. I can't explain it, but it feels I've shifted too much weight to the front.
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Old 10-17-2013, 02:46 PM   #8
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You need to weight it then to know exactly what is going on.
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Old 10-17-2013, 02:50 PM   #9
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You don't NEED brakes either, but they are good to have. Same with WD bars. I wouldn't tow my trailer across a parking lot without them.
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:21 PM   #10
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You need to weight it then to know exactly what is going on.
After I post this thread I did weigh it and with the propane tanks full its 873 lbs. I need to get on level ground and see how much the front end rises.
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Old 10-18-2013, 07:11 AM   #11
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Do you have a hitch that will support an 850 pound tongue weight? My Wdh will support 600# w/o bars, 1200# w/bars
Let me rephrase my question, while the vehicle's hitch may support more weight, does the ball mount you are using support it? In my limited experience, all the ball mounts i have seen max out at 600lbs (w/o bars)
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:15 AM   #12
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Let me rephrase my question, while the vehicle's hitch may support more weight, does the ball mount you are using support it? In my limited experience, all the ball mounts i have seen max out at 600lbs (w/o bars)
I do not know what the OP has, but my B&W adjustable tri-ball states - for the 2 & 5/8" ball, it has an allowable tongue weight of 1,000 lbs. So do SOME of those aluminum adjustable drop hitches that cost so much at truck acessory stores, hitch shops, and farm supply places.

Most auto part stores sell only class 2 & 3 ball mounts. Class 4 and 5 ball mounts are required for heavier tounge weights (class 4 - up to 1,000 lbs / class 5 up to 1,500lbs - depending on individual hitch - not all). They cost considerably more and most auto part stores (and big box stores) do not carry them because most customers do not know the difference except the price and they do not sell well beside the lesser priced class 2 and 3 ball mounts which max out at that 600 lb or so mark (I just saw class 2 max out at 300 lbs and class 3 max out at 750 lbs on a particular hitch sales web site). Class 4 & 5 shanks are made of thicker, hardened steel or alloys, or may be a solid shank instead of a hollow tube. You can't buy them as cheap as lesser class hitches.

Yesterday in Daytona at Biketoberfest, I saw a 3500 Dodge with a class 2 drop hitch (one Wally World sells - I've seen it there) that was bent from use. He had a 20' 2 axle bike trailer - TOO MUCH for that hitch! It is a hollow tube with a hollow drop that is adjustable with a pin. It WILL fail, and I do not want to be around it when it does.

My step son had one on his mud truck and I made him remove it before it broke and hurt someone he pulls out or someone pulling him out. People do not realize weight limits and ratings are there for a reason.
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:53 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by NFlcamper View Post

I do not know what the OP has, but my B&W adjustable tri-ball states - for the 2 & 5/8" ball, it has an allowable tongue weight of 1,000 lbs. So do SOME of those aluminum adjustable drop hitches that cost so much at truck acessory stores, hitch shops, and farm supply places.

Most auto part stores sell only class 2 & 3 ball mounts. Class 4 and 5 ball mounts are required for heavier tounge weights (class 4 - up to 1,000 lbs / class 5 up to 1,500lbs - depending on individual hitch - not all). They cost considerably more and most auto part stores (and big box stores) do not carry them because most customers do not know the difference except the price and they do not sell well beside the lesser priced class 2 and 3 ball mounts which max out at that 600 lb or so mark (I just saw class 2 max out at 300 lbs and class 3 max out at 750 lbs on a particular hitch sales web site). Class 4 & 5 shanks are made of thicker, hardened steel or alloys, or may be a solid shank instead of a hollow tube. You can't buy them as cheap as lesser class hitches.

Yesterday in Daytona at Biketoberfest, I saw a 3500 Dodge with a class 2 drop hitch (one Wally World sells - I've seen it there) that was bent from use. He had a 20' 2 axle bike trailer - TOO MUCH for that hitch! It is a hollow tube with a hollow drop that is adjustable with a pin. It WILL fail, and I do not want to be around it when it does.

My step son had one on his mud truck and I made him remove it before it broke and hurt someone he pulls out or someone pulling him out. People do not realize weight limits and ratings are there for a reason.
Excellent discussion on the difference in ball mounts
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Old 10-18-2013, 09:24 AM   #14
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I'm going to keep using the tension bars. I feel its better to have um and not need um than to need um and not have um. And it seem there is more downside to not having them than upside. I don't need 9,000 lbs behind me at 60+ mph with a potential problem. I'm going through the test that BigBaron mentioned above.
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