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Old 07-24-2016, 11:19 AM   #1
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Shims: Draw Bar/Ball Mount Assembly

WDH assembly in most cases is fairly straight forward, but it's wise to check the 'fit-up' between the draw bar and ball mount. Ideally there should be a smooth 'slip-fit' between the two components prior to applying the WDH manufacture's torque requirements to the provided assembly bolts/nuts (common range of 200ft/lbs to 300ft/lbs).

I recently had to up-grade my draw bar size from a 2" to 2 1/2" due to my new 2500HD's increased receiver's pin box size of 2 1/2", and I was going to re-use my existing WDH ball mount.

Shims may be required..................

Upon assembling my new 2 1/2" draw bar to my existing ball mount (both spec'd as compatible) and after applying approx. 200ft/lbs torque to the 3/4 nuts..., I noticed daylight (ever so slight) between the draw bar and ball mount joint near the top 3/4 bolt.

Upon loosening the two 3/4 bolts I found that I had to use a .020 shim with the top 3/4 bolt and a .010 shim with the bottom 3/4 bolt to create a snug "slip-fit" between the two components. I used an old spark plug feeler gauge to determine the amount of gap (daylight).

Since my WDH is 10 plus-years old I didn't have any shims on hand (my old 2" draw bar didn't require any shims), so I purchased some new stainless steel slotted shims. I noticed recently that some WDH manufacture's (Reese, etc.) do supply shims with the WDH for this very purpose.



Shim source, McMaster-Carr: McMaster-Carr

I ordered a couple each of the following: #9722K42, #9722K46, #9722K56

After incorporating the shims to the draw bar/ball mount assembly, the final assembly/torque fit-up was perfect.

Just food for thought.

Bob
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Old 07-24-2016, 01:16 PM   #2
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Excellent post!!! When adjusting my hitch once the correct draw bar arrived (dealer didn't get correct one, 2-1/2" Reese Titan ordered, or it didn't arrive on time- not sure which) I noticed a little bit of space between the ball mount and new shank. Called Reese and they sent a shim out asap.

Definitely something to keep in mind!!!
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WDH SET UP. HOW A WDH WORKS. CAT SCALE HOW TO.
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Old 07-24-2016, 04:17 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Rustic Eagle View Post
After incorporating the shims to the draw bar/ball mount assembly, the final assembly/torque fit-up was perfect. Just food for thought.Bob
Bob, how important is this? My original setup was a Reese 1500lb WDH with a 2" shank. I have since purchased a Reese Titan shank to fit the 2.5" receiver on my F-250. I switched out the hitch head from the old 2" shank and mounted it to the Titan and still using the 1500lb spring bars. Your post made me go and look at mine and yes, there's a barely perceptible gap between hitch head and shank but seems to be only the top bolt. Been using this setup for about 3.5 years. What are the consequences of not putting in shims as I haven't noticed any ill effects? My hitch head also has the square, grooved washers for locking in hitch head angle. Thanks, Terry
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Old 07-24-2016, 07:52 PM   #4
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Terry,

Sounds like we have a similar WDH set-up, I also utilized my existing Reese ball mount and 1,500lb spring bars with the new 2 1/2" draw bar.

IMO it's very important......., a visible gap either prior to, or especially after properly torquing (Reese WDH 300ft/lbs) the 3/4 bolts may compromise the integrity of the WDH assembly......, just to many multi-directional forces taking place at the WDH while in tow.

In respect to any gap, Reese states the following in their WDH Installation Instructions:

"OPTIONAL SHIM KIT

Use the shim provided when needed to fill any gap between the Weight Distributing Head shown below and the hitch bar used in the particular application.

It is easier to install the shim from the top down as shown on the following page. In doing so, you will encounter one of three scenarios:

1. Shim will go all the way down to line up with the bottom hole. If this is the case, use the entire shim in the gap.

2. Shim will not begin to fit between the head and hitch bar. If this is the case, discard shim and continue installation. The existing gap is acceptable

3. Shim will not go in far enough to reach bottom hole. If this is the case, cut shim in half and use only the top half for the top bolt. Discard bottom half of shim.

Note: It is conceivable that in some rare combinations, two shims could be used. In these cases, contact Customer Service at 800-632-3290 or 800-428-7303 for a free additional shim service kit #58207."


Source (w/pics): http://www.reeseprod.com/support/ins...ion/N66075.pdf

I spent my working career in the design/build/installation of machine tool machines/automation/robotics........., so past experience told me to correct the issue before it became part of a "root cause" discussion with a fractured ball mount.

Bob
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Old 07-26-2016, 01:00 PM   #5
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Bob, is this the recommended shim kit? https://www.amazon.com/Reese-58207-W.../dp/B00GB1CUMS
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Old 07-26-2016, 01:29 PM   #6
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Bob, is this the recommended shim kit? https://www.amazon.com/Reese-58207-W.../dp/B00GB1CUMS
TC,

That's the kit. But try calling Reese. Tell them you just bought a Titan shank for a new truck and noticed a little bit of a gap between the hitch head and new shank. Ask if this is ok, and I bet they will send you a shim for free.

I asked if there was still a little space left should I call back for another shim, and was told that the hitch head should draw in just a little so if it's just a small gap (before tightening), good to go.

Good luck!
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WDH SET UP. HOW A WDH WORKS. CAT SCALE HOW TO.
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Old 07-26-2016, 03:03 PM   #7
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need-a-vacation, just got off the phone with Reese and he told me that kit #58207 was for round bar applications only, not my particular trunnion style hitch. He recommended that I buy a couple of stainless steel washers [3/4" hole] and use them as shims which is probably what I'm going to do. Really appreciate the info as it was worth a try. Weird thing is the kit on Amazon mentions "high performance" trunnion style hitches. I guess mine's not. Thanks again, Terry
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Old 07-26-2016, 03:44 PM   #8
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TC,

Interesting info as I have the HP Trunnion system, 1500lbs bars, Titan shank. When I called Reese last year, what they sent me looks identical to what you posted..... So no idea!!! Lol

I don't see how a washer will fit, let alone be strong enough to not flatten at all.... Could be wrong though!

Do you know who you talked to? Maybe they rushed you off the phone as I believe they close at 5 (ET), and from your post it looks like that is about the time you called. I talked to Craig last week, then had another question today and talked to Bill I think it was....

Good luck!!!
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'16 Jay Flight 32 BHDS ELITE 32 BHDS MODS Reese DC HP

WDH SET UP. HOW A WDH WORKS. CAT SCALE HOW TO.
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Old 07-26-2016, 08:38 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by TCNASHVILLE View Post
need-a-vacation, just got off the phone with Reese and he told me that kit #58207 was for round bar applications only,.......snip
Terry,

The Reese representative is incorrect.

Here is an example of a Reese Trunnion style WDH where the Reese installation instructions reference shim kit #58207:

http://www.reeseprod.com/support/ins...ion/N66006.pdf

..... and another trunnion,

http://www.reeseprod.com/support/ins...ion/N66022.pdf

I looked into using some 3/4 Grade 8 washers at my local Fastenal store but they were to thick for my 'gap', so I ended up going with the shims I referenced in my earlier post.

Bob
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Old 07-30-2016, 08:50 AM   #10
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I received my shim from Reese yesterday. Talked to someone named Derrick [I think]. Great customer service at Reese. Upon installation, I had to cut the shim in half [per Reese instructions] to use on the top because the bottom wouldn't go in. Thanks n-a-v & Bob for all the info.
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