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Old 10-01-2012, 06:51 AM   #15
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If a trailer or toad is 100 lbs over weight, the hitch is not going to self-destruct. Just like tires, they go over sidewall PSI when air temp and speed change.

If a hitch is rated for 5000 lbs, and the trailer weighs 5000 lbs, what does that go to when you take off or stop?

People need to get over the "sky is falling" syndrome about weights and PSI and a lot of other things.
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Old 10-01-2012, 01:11 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunner View Post
If a trailer or toad is 100 lbs over weight, the hitch is not going to self-destruct. Just like tires, they go over sidewall PSI when air temp and speed change.

If a hitch is rated for 5000 lbs, and the trailer weighs 5000 lbs, what does that go to when you take off or stop?

People need to get over the "sky is falling" syndrome about weights and PSI and a lot of other things.
Thanks for all the replies.

The trailers I'm looking at all have a 7000gvwr with empty weights ranging from 2700lbs to 3400lbs giving a load capacity of 3600 to 4300lbs. I'm looking to load about 3200lbs of motorcycles and gear. This already puts me about 1000lbs over the hitch rating of 5000lbs. This is not my major concern. Tongue weight is. With about 1600lbs of motorcycles up front I fear the tongue weight will be way over the hitch limit of 500lbs. And no I can not move the axles on the trailer. None of the enclosed trailers I have looked at have the ability to move the axles to adjust tongue weight. I guess I'll have to decide on a trailer, load it up with what I want to carry and actually measure the tongue weight. If it is way over 500lbs I'll have to go for a trailer toad or look into having the frame/hitch beefed up.

Looks like I may not make it to Biketoberfest this year... bummer
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Old 10-01-2012, 01:20 PM   #17
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Get the tongue weight with it fully loaded before you
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Old 10-01-2012, 04:42 PM   #18
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Don't forget that the weight of the two bikes behind the axles will cantilever their weight to somewhat compensate for the bikes in front of the axles. In a perfect world, each pair of bikes would balance the other, the weight would all be on the trailer axles, and the tongue weight would not be affected. Of course, that's not gonna happen. However, there will be some affect. The entire weight of the two forward bikes will not be seen at the tongue; there's a ratio and proportion affect and the farther the hitch point is from the weight, the less the tongue weight will be.

Continuing with the "balancing" process. I suggest mounting the bikes as far back as possible, and getting as much of the additional gear as possible between the rearmost pair of bikes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by offdutyRV View Post
Thanks for all the replies.

The trailers I'm looking at all have a 7000gvwr with empty weights ranging from 2700lbs to 3400lbs giving a load capacity of 3600 to 4300lbs. I'm looking to load about 3200lbs of motorcycles and gear. This already puts me about 1000lbs over the hitch rating of 5000lbs. This is not my major concern. Tongue weight is. With about 1600lbs of motorcycles up front I fear the tongue weight will be way over the hitch limit of 500lbs. And no I can not move the axles on the trailer. None of the enclosed trailers I have looked at have the ability to move the axles to adjust tongue weight. I guess I'll have to decide on a trailer, load it up with what I want to carry and actually measure the tongue weight. If it is way over 500lbs I'll have to go for a trailer toad or look into having the frame/hitch beefed up.

Looks like I may not make it to Biketoberfest this year... bummer
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Old 10-01-2012, 05:53 PM   #19
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sliding trailer axles

was under the impression that you already had the trailer. you might try contacting the manufaturers we have several here in the los angeles area. talk to them explaining your need for sliding axles and see what they say. being here at the port we have lots of semis, and lots of them have sliding axles , lots of the tractor units also have sliding 5th wheels. depending if the fenders are on the outside it should be no big deal to have a welding shop fabricate a set of slides, just bring $
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:34 PM   #20
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Have you tried backing the bikes into the trailer so the the heaviest part is toward the axles on the front two and the rear two would have the weight hanging over the rear of the axles which would help lighten tongue weight.
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:47 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by offdutyRV View Post
Thanks for all the replies.

The trailers I'm looking at all have a 7000gvwr with empty weights ranging from 2700lbs to 3400lbs giving a load capacity of 3600 to 4300lbs. I'm looking to load about 3200lbs of motorcycles and gear. This already puts me about 1000lbs over the hitch rating of 5000lbs. This is not my major concern. Tongue weight is. With about 1600lbs of motorcycles up front I fear the tongue weight will be way over the hitch limit of 500lbs. And no I can not move the axles on the trailer. None of the enclosed trailers I have looked at have the ability to move the axles to adjust tongue weight. I guess I'll have to decide on a trailer, load it up with what I want to carry and actually measure the tongue weight. If it is way over 500lbs I'll have to go for a trailer toad or look into having the frame/hitch beefed up.

Looks like I may not make it to Biketoberfest this year... bummer
I would suggest looking at an all aluminum trailer. There are several manufacturers that fit the bill. No sense buying the wrong trailer in the first place and then going to all the trouble of trying to fix it after the fact.

I have an 7'X18' with a 5' v nose that weighs 1850 pounds and can haul 4150. Triton Aluminum Enclosed Trailer Series
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Old 10-02-2012, 01:10 AM   #22
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I've seen a lot of comments on how to lighten the tongue weight, but nobody has addressed a major sticking point: the tongue weight should be between 12% and 15% of the total trailer weight, with 15% being the desired target. The reason: lighten up the tongue weight and you will eventually find yourself in an unrecoverable sway condition. Change lanes too quickly at speed, hit a pothole on one side at speed, any number of incidents will cause the trailer to start swaying, and it will soon oscillate out of control.

If the trailer and its load are tipping the scales at 6K lbs the tongue weight should be between 720 lbs and 900 lbs to be safe - that's a lot of extra weight being put on the receiver and rear frame assembly of your RV. Is the frame up to being loaded to almost twice its manufacturer's rating?
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Old 10-02-2012, 01:25 AM   #23
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The easy and cheap solution is to replace the hitch. That frame is bigger than light duty pickups that pull a lot more of a load.

There should also be no problem with a weight distributing hitch - it's a spring chassis, not a bagger.
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Old 10-02-2012, 04:27 AM   #24
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I had a similar issue with my trailer. It is a custom built tandem axle tow dolly, 17ft. long with a 8x8 platform in front of the axles. I tow a Road King and a Road Star on the platform and tow a Jeep off the rear dolly section. With both bikes in front of the axles, I have a tongue weight well over 1000 lbs.

I have a DP and the frame extension is pretty short and quite stout with thicker metal than the frame itself. I bought a new receiver hitch from Etrailer.com. It's a utility truck receiver rated at 16,000lbs/2500lbs TW and comes as a weld together kit with a choice of 2 mounting brackets. Cost about $225. I chose the bigger of the two brackets and took it to a welder/fabricator to be installed. He charged $150 to weld it all up and wire in a new 7-wire plug and brake controller. I also had him add two braces similar to Dunners (but welded to the receiver and frame, not the ball assy.) to stop any possible side to side movement of the assembly since the receiver hangs about a foot below the frame. I also puchased a adjustable aluminum drop hitch w/ 2500lbTW capacity for $140 from my local U-Haul dealer. Oddly, it was cheaper at U-Haul than from Etrailer.com.

I have been very happy with the results and have towed nearly 10.000 miles without an issue. It is rock solid and has had it's share of abuse. I believe towing across Indianas horrible, pot hole filled roads was the best test of all! It has also endured many steep driveways and the pavement was always the loser.

I suggest checking out Etrailer.com and taking your coach to a welder for advice. At first, my welder was apprehensive, but once he saw the beefy receiver/hitch and my idea about the cross bracing, he was more than happy to do it. I think you will be pleasently suprised at the solution, I am now a happy camper who can bring along all his toys.

I hope this may help a little in your search for a solution, keep us posted on your progress. We will be at Biketoberfest and hope to see you there. Drop me a line and maybe we can meet up for a ride and a few too many cocktails!!
Jason
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Old 10-02-2012, 05:31 AM   #25
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I braced mine for more support for that 11" drop hitch I needed to level my trailer and used rod ends so I could remove it by pulling the two bolts and the pin. I didn't think it was strong enough with 500/5000+ sitting on the ball and hanging down that far. My buddy with the `04 LX Breeze, pulling a 28" enclosed, had his strengthened with two length of 2" receiver material welded to the cross bar and side plates of his receiver and used a WD hitch. Cliffs Welding, Trailer Hitches & Truck Accessories | Mesa Arizona guesstimates it's good for 10K. I think a good, experienced, hitch welder would be the cheapest and easiest way for offdutyRV to go if he can't balance his weight correctly.
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Old 10-11-2012, 05:23 PM   #26
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"Roll Under" Prevention Device.

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Old 10-12-2012, 08:48 AM   #27
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Thx. I don't care if it is gusseted, I didn't like that 11" drop hitch hanging down there like that. I had the chromoly tubes, rod ends and other metal laying around, so fabbed it up one day, and even used existing holes in the frame.

The front of the engine in my mid-engine LS1 sand rail sits over the trailer rear tire and there is a couple hundred pounds of transmission hanging off the back of it. I moved most of the rarely used items to my MH, so I'm pretty sure I am under the max for the tongue wt. Will get it weighed next trip. I do know the trailer weighed right at 5k with gas and the extra stuff in it.
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Old 10-12-2012, 09:33 AM   #28
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After giving it a lot of thought, having the frame looked at by two different welders and towing the trailer empty (BTW I picked up an enclosed trailer 20'x8' inside dimensions) at highway speeds to see how it handled I decide I need a trailer toad and will be picking one up this weekend. I like my coach and bikes too much to take a chance on being over the tongue weight rating. I wonder if the toad will make sharp turns easier or harder???
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