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Old 05-03-2015, 07:47 PM   #21
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On my hitch, I pull out the arm to open the jaws. When I back in, the jaws snap shut and pull the arm back in with a loud " click".

I guess I thought that meant locked.

Am I missing something and have just been really lucky so far?
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Old 05-03-2015, 09:15 PM   #22
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Well I can now report some good news ... this damage didn't lower my MPG ratings. Nearly 200 miles each way yielded about 9.6 MPG, typical stuff for me.

New thought:
We stayed at a very old/ former KOA - Styx River, in Robertsdale, AL; now owned/marketed by Ocean Canyon Properties. Narrow lots, and in my particular case - no shade, but otherwise a real nice place. Lots of extra amenities and we did enjoy it. Unfortunately they don't allow outsiders to call ahead and/or just drop in.

To become a full nationwide member is nearly $14,000, lowest membership was nearly $5800; PLUS nearly $600/year in maintenance fees. I just can't justify that when I typically spend less than $600/year on the campground of my choice fees.

Full-timers - traveling nationwide - might find that community beneficial.
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Old 05-04-2015, 07:27 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jmooney View Post
On my hitch, I pull out the arm to open the jaws. When I back in, the jaws snap shut and pull the arm back in with a loud " click".

I guess I thought that meant locked.

Am I missing something and have just been really lucky so far?
It depends on which hitch you have, either way you are "lucky"
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Old 05-04-2015, 05:30 PM   #24
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That stinks - sorry it happened. One of the best add-on items I've bought is the 5er safety latch from Butch's.

Made in the USA
Easy install
VERY well built

http://www.5thwheellatchkit.com

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Old 05-06-2015, 07:17 PM   #25
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Its about routine and not deviating at all for any reason; rain, bugs or DW anxious to get going. part of that routine is checking the connections
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Old 05-06-2015, 09:34 PM   #26
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Big oops. I did it myself back when I had a 5er as well. Another time, I had my Makita 5500 generator loaded in the bed perpendicular up against the front of the bad by the window on the passenger side. Figured I was being smart since the generator had to loaded there because it was to tall. Pulled in for gas and had to make a very sharp turn pulling out. A nice crunch sound, the back of the truck shattering and all was done. I learned from that day forward to load the generator center directly in front of the hitch.
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Old 05-10-2015, 07:30 PM   #27
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I think semi 5th wheel hitches are superior to all of the rv hitches I have seen. I can't fathom why they don't auto lock closed. Having to install a pin or some other thing is lame. Back in hear feel it click give a tug test look to verify hitch pin is correctly located your done. Nope rv industry hitches make you pin bars, latches etc. Something you could forget which I suspect is the cause of most dropped damage.
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:57 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by imjustdave View Post
I think semi 5th wheel hitches are superior to all of the rv hitches I have seen. I can't fathom why they don't auto lock closed. Having to install a pin or some other thing is lame. Back in hear feel it click give a tug test look to verify hitch pin is correctly located your done. Nope rv industry hitches make you pin bars, latches etc. Something you could forget which I suspect is the cause of most dropped damage.
I'm not trying to make assumptions... but just based on your statement above, you may have some misconceptions about semi hitches.

Semi hitches are prone to the same failure that RV 5th wheel hitches are. In most cases, it's not a design flaw of the hitch - it's user error. In my OTR days, I've seen plenty of semi trailers dropped on their nose because they were too high when lashed up... or the driver failed to do a visual inspection to be sure of the hookup.

All the safety bar does (as posted in my earlier reply) - or an Ox BedSaver - is provide a means of mechanical insurance.

We all make mistakes. That's why you have insurance to begin with. If we were all perfect in all of our execution of activities - there would be no "opps" stories. However... we're all human... prone to distraction, error, forgetfullness, you name it...

As far as saying, "you shouldn't have to check it visually"... fair point and an excellent goal. However, mechanical things fail. Failures induced by user error or by mechanical fatigue and/or breakdown.... both end in the same result.
For those that choose to do so... installing a device like being discussed here is simply a way to prevent potential mistakes from being more costly.


Now if you can find a way to eliminate any and all potential for mechanical failure... outside of installing extra equipment... I'm all ears.
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Old 05-11-2015, 12:16 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by J.Lockhart View Post
Semi hitches are prone to the same failure that RV 5th wheel hitches are. In most cases, it's not a design flaw of the hitch - it's user error. In my OTR days, I've seen plenty of semi trailers dropped on their nose because they were too high when lashed up... or the driver failed to do a visual inspection to be sure of the hookup.
I dropped a loaded Army flat bed off the back of an M915 tractor (AM General semi made for the military) in Korea due to lack of experience. Luckily, it didn't damage the landing legs but I got a bit of a butt chewing for it.
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Old 05-11-2015, 04:06 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J.Lockhart View Post
I'm not trying to make assumptions... but just based on your statement above, you may have some misconceptions about semi hitches.

Semi hitches are prone to the same failure that RV 5th wheel hitches are. In most cases, it's not a design flaw of the hitch - it's user error. In my OTR days, I've seen plenty of semi trailers dropped on their nose because they were too high when lashed up... or the driver failed to do a visual inspection to be sure of the hookup.

All the safety bar does (as posted in my earlier reply) - or an Ox BedSaver - is provide a means of mechanical insurance.

We all make mistakes. That's why you have insurance to begin with. If we were all perfect in all of our execution of activities - there would be no "opps" stories. However... we're all human... prone to distraction, error, forgetfullness, you name it...

As far as saying, "you shouldn't have to check it visually"... fair point and an excellent goal. However, mechanical things fail. Failures induced by user error or by mechanical fatigue and/or breakdown.... both end in the same result.
For those that choose to do so... installing a device like being discussed here is simply a way to prevent potential mistakes from being more costly.


Now if you can find a way to eliminate any and all potential for mechanical failure... outside of installing extra equipment... I'm all ears.

Let me add some clarifications. I have a B&W companion which is highly praised and very much recommend by every owner of one. I like mine but I have a love hate relationship with it as well.

If I hitch correctly AKA not a high hitch like you are referring to. I can still drop the trailer if I forget to pin the handle closed. I can look from the tail gate and see the king pin in front of the clam locks, I can see everything is perfect, I can even see the handle all the way back... but I have to pin it closed for it to stay closed. This is my worry and issue, and I suspect a large % of dropped trailers.

Every time I hitch up I follow the same steps and I have been good to go thus far but every so often I Question myself did I pin that lever, and thus I stop and look. guess its my OCD kicking in.

My experience with semi trucks is it locks closed when it's closed, no manual step required. You open it, back under, it locks. you look to verify and your good.

High pin = pin sitting on top of the 5th wheel plate or sitting on top of the jaws, "This may cause it to lock but the jaws are not around the pin." or up and over the plate and in front of it. I suspect on a pickup these would be easy to see but on a semi you could miss it fairly easily. But these would also pass a tug test.
Only way I know of to not do this is to have the truck lift the trailer a little when loading and to VISUALLY CHECK from the tailgate. look is the pin in front of the jaws, are the jaws closed?

Basically it is idiot proof a lot better then the RV industry
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