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Old 10-02-2016, 03:48 PM   #1
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F150 and Trailer "Bucking"

I recently hauled my 92' Jayco Cardinal from my grandmother's place we are cleaning out to my house. It was a 20 mile or so trip and I never drove over 55 mph.

The original 92' brochure shows a dry hitch weight of 225 lbs and a dry weight of 2200 lbs. Since this was just a move from one place to another and not a trip I was moving totally empty. There isn't even a battery in the box on the front right now.

My TV is a 2012 F150 4x4 with the Max Tow package.

During the 20 mile trip there were times I guess I hit a dips in the road or something, but it starting bucking a lot in the middle where the trailer sits on the ball. I didn't feel I was in any danger, but it was a noticeable oscillation up and down. Today I used my 12 ft utility trailer to haul a load of stuff from her workshop (work bench, saw, cabinets) and it was a heavy load. On the way down empty I could feel the bucking again, but on the way home that was pretty much gone. I am guess not enough tongue weight was causing the bucking feeling.

When I get everything repaired and ready for camping on the trailer I am kinda worried I am going to have problems on a long trip. The Jayco has a GVWR of 3300 lbs I think.

What I am wondering is, I am going to have enough tongue weight even with the battery, full propane, and a full water tank (20 gallon between the front of the trailer and ahead of the front axle) and stuff in the back of the truck to pull that heavy duty suspension down enough to stop the bucking.

I obviously have more truck than I need for this trailer, but that is better than not enough.

Is a WDH the answer just to stiffen things up a bit?

Previously we pulled this trailer with an 88 Suburban. No WDH or sway control. In fact my uncle was pulling right after it was bought and intentionally swerved to try to get it to sway and it won't. It doesn't to do anything but pull straight.

This picture shows what I have... I had already lifted the trailer off the ball, but you get an idea.

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Old 10-02-2016, 05:37 PM   #2
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Well when the tongue is light it will buck when on a concrete road. My car hauler has quite a bit of tongue weight and when I get on concrete if I don't have a car in it it gets really bucky at time. Could maybe look at an air ride hitch ... I was going to get one but wouldn't work with wdh bars... I don't think wdh should be nescessary
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Old 10-03-2016, 07:09 AM   #3
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Time for new shocks...
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Old 10-03-2016, 07:32 AM   #4
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I have the same truck, how many miles are on yours? Like the poster above me commented, you may need new shocks, I'm still on my originals with no issues, but only have 30K miles on mine. Does it look to you like you are 'level' when hooked up? Shouldn't need a WDH for something that light.
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Old 10-03-2016, 05:58 PM   #5
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I have about 76,000 on it. They outta last longer than that, and they are the shocks that are part of the Max Tow pkg. Should have been stiffer than normal shocks to begin with.
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Old 10-03-2016, 05:59 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by bansai View Post
I have the same truck, how many miles are on yours? Like the poster above me commented, you may need new shocks, I'm still on my originals with no issues, but only have 30K miles on mine. Does it look to you like you are 'level' when hooked up? Shouldn't need a WDH for something that light.

The trailer was just about dead level hooked up.
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Old 10-03-2016, 06:08 PM   #7
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Is a WDH the answer just to stiffen things up a bit?
My guess is yes. I use an Equal-i-zer WDH, and that thing makes the TT and TV feel like one unit. When I hit a bump you get any bounce. I think by using a WHD you'd find towing a much more pleasurable and safer experience, IMHO.
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Old 10-03-2016, 08:26 PM   #8
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My guess is yes. I use an Equal-i-zer WDH, and that thing makes the TT and TV feel like one unit. When I hit a bump you get any bounce. I think by using a WHD you'd find towing a much more pleasurable and safer experience, IMHO.
It couldn't hurt, I'm just struggling a bit understanding how something that light would really need one. Their lightest duty hitch which they just added recently is rated for a 500 lb tongue weight. I had a similar popup for our first camper and it towed fine with a 2002 Ford Explorer. I was new to towing campers then and I'm not going to say I didn't notice the difference when towing, but that TV was up to the task. I run an equalizer hitch now and am mostly a big fan of it, but frankly, you should be able to tow that with a much less capable truck, SUV, etc. It could be your shocks are shot, Tow package or not, that's enough miles where people start replacing things like shocks, etc..

Edit - their newest hitch will go down to 400 lb tongue weight. I had 500lbs stuck on the brain for some reason. Anyway, I'd say why bother unless your TV is a bicycle.
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Old 10-03-2016, 08:57 PM   #9
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It couldn't hurt, I'm just struggling a bit understanding how something that light would really need one. Their lightest duty hitch which they just added recently is rated for a 500 lb tongue weight. I had a similar popup for our first camper and it towed fine with a 2002 Ford Explorer. I was new to towing campers then and I'm not going to say I didn't notice the difference when towing, but that TV was up to the task. I run an equalizer hitch now and am mostly a big fan of it, but frankly, you should be able to tow that with a much less capable truck, SUV, etc. It could be your shocks are shot, Tow package or not, that's enough miles where people start replacing things like shocks, etc..
Yeah, after thinking about it I think I will go with a shock change first and see what that does. It will be next year though. I am not taking the trailer anywhere anyway, there is too much work I need to go to get it ready again. Its been just sitting since 1998.

Bilstein 4600? As far as I can tell the 5100s are for lifted trucks and are painted different.
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Old 10-03-2016, 09:19 PM   #10
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Yeah, after thinking about it I think I will go with a shock change first and see what that does. It will be next year though. I am not taking the trailer anywhere anyway, there is too much work I need to go to get it ready again. Its been just sitting since 1998.



Bilstein 4600? As far as I can tell the 5100s are for lifted trucks and are painted different.


Just load the camper with heavy stuff in the front. Carry a loaded cooler in the trailer. Shocks would be nice I'm sure, but the problem you're describing is an empty trailer.

Worst case scenario is water damage towards the rear of the camper has added more weight behind the tandems than the factory intended.


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