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Old 04-05-2015, 08:00 PM   #1
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Trailer tongue length

Looking for some info on selecting a trailer to pull behind my 40' DP.
I have read that it is better to have a trailer with 5' tongue ?
I have found a nice trailer but it has a 4' tongue, is there an easy remedy for this?
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Old 04-05-2015, 08:23 PM   #2
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I'll try and share some info on this. I pull a 28ft trailer with a 4 ft tongue. It is a true 48". Some trailers have shorter than actual 48" tongues. I have had no problems. Now I have friends that have damaged the corners of their D.P. by backing them up too sharp (tight). I would suggest hooking the trailer to your coach and having someone watch and let you back it up by looking in your mirrors and see how the trailer and coach fit. If you know going in that it's too tight then I'd pass on the 4ft tongue. You didn't say how long trailer your looking at but starting with a 40ft coach you will be limited in size due to length laws unless you live and travel in states that have the 75 plus length limits. City's and states are cracking down on over length combos and some time even make people park the rigs untill they can meet the legal length which some time imvolves renting a pick up and then after paying the fine will allow you to move the trailer. I do know alot of us violate the over all length but it's getting more . troublesome. Good luck. Hope this helped and didn't confuse. Rob
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Old 04-05-2015, 08:28 PM   #3
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Well after posting this I searched the topic on this site and read several options.
My idea for a fix, I have a motorcycle lift hitch with three receivers installed on my MH. My idea is to use all three receivers and weld an extension. What's your thoughts?
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Old 04-06-2015, 03:49 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hondalee View Post
Well after posting this I searched the topic on this site and read several options.
My idea for a fix, I have a motorcycle lift hitch with three receivers installed on my MH. My idea is to use all three receivers and weld an extension. What's your thoughts?

Wouldn't you be putting to much stress on the hitch with the added length. What is the tongue weight of the trailer? Personally, I'd add a foot to the trailer tongue (well that's what I had done on a 24 foot enclosed car hauler) and then not worry about added stress on the three receivers.
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Old 04-06-2015, 07:31 PM   #5
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Do not do it!

Not a ME but tinker a bit.

Try this exercise.

Look around where you are at right now and pick up something like a phone book or gallon of milk or six pack of beer.

Hold it next to your chest and you feel you can hold it there for a long time.

Now stand up and hold it out at arms length...

How long do you think you can hold it?

The distance from sholder to hand is "moment" if I recall.

Your trailer hitch was designed for carrying a certian amount of tongue weight and a certian amount of mass with the connectiin real close to tge hitch or with a short moment.

Extend it out and things can get real wonky.

Make a hard turn and hit the brakes and bad things happen.
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Old 04-06-2015, 07:37 PM   #6
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Hard to understand or explain, But, extending the hitch from the back of the motor home acts like a lever, and in my opinion not a good thing, But extending the trailer tongue would be a much better way to approach. I will caution though, make sure your using a reputable person, It's more than just adding length to the tongue, Most trailers frames are built in a jig fixture and is squared and everything is trangulated to a spec. So just adding length to the center and not considering the angled pcs from the outside perimeter will cause tracking of the trailer to be altered and it's not good. My trailer manufacture (although now out of business) was a leading cargo/car hauling trailer manufacture. (Owens Classic) would not even discuss altering my tongue length.
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Old 04-13-2015, 05:34 PM   #7
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Thanks for your thoughts, the reason I thought extending the hitch would be doable is the hitch is desined to haul a motorcycle that weighs 1,000lb. The points that were made are good ones. I have not bought the trailer in question yet, but I think I will let the seller of the trailer decide, if he excepts my offer then I will take it and still have the money to extend the tounge if he dose not except the offer than problem still solved!
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Old 04-14-2015, 09:46 AM   #8
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We picked up a 13 1/4" Brophy tongue and it seems to make up the difference needed to keep our car hauler (8.5' wide) off the back of the bus .... added 4-5 inches in length ... still had a 1000lb max tongue weight ... and was a 2 1/2 shaft to the receiver ...
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Old 04-14-2015, 10:04 AM   #9
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If you ever pull the trailer with a pickup, extending the tongue can also keep the tailgate from hitting the screw jack when you drop the tailgate.
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