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Old 06-30-2013, 02:10 PM   #11
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At one time, the general consensus was that the TV should be level. A lot of people signed onto that and it has carried up to the present. That said, the current trend of thought is to transfer the correct amount of weight back to the front axle, and just let the rear take care of itself. I assume that to be accurate because I haven't read in any manuals or instructions anything about getting the TV level or raising the back.
The trailer can be leveled by raising or lowering the hitch accordingly, so that eliminates the need to try to do it with WD. The rear of the TV can be raised, if necessary, with bags, helper springs, etc, but that does not alter either the payload capacity or the axle rating of the TV. It does affect the WD adjustment, as raising the rear of the TV changes the angle of the hitch head, and would therefor change the tension on the WD bars, requiring readjustment of the WD and also the anti-swy if you are using a dual cam setup.

I'm with you, I haven't seen first hand the wear effects of too much weight transfer, but I've read from several sources and from people a lot sharper than me about this stuff say it can and does happen, and I accept that.
One thing that you do run into by trying to raise the rear of the TV with the WD is that to transfer weight to one point, some other place has to give up that weight. The only place that could be would be the rear axle, and by removing weight you would run the risk of a traction loss and depending on the driving conditions, that may not be the best thing to have happen.

There are a couple of really good stickies on RV.net, as well as numerous threads about this that everyone who tows needs to read. One explains how WD works and is done with mathematical explanations that are far beyond my bandwidth. The other explains how to properly set it up. Those guys should be given an honorary PhD in towing because the stickies are that good. Ron Gratz and John Barca have this stuff down to a science.
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Old 01-20-2014, 05:34 PM   #12
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Gabriel Highjackers (air shocks) are another option. They are very easy to install as they just replace the existing shocks. Most repair shops can do it.
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Old 01-20-2014, 07:18 PM   #13
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Does the Roadmaster Active Suspension actually help on a heavy duty truck like my F350?
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Old 01-21-2014, 07:34 AM   #14
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I have the RAS on my Excursion, the shop who installed it for me has installed them on a fleet of ambulances, they are on 1 ton frames, to help the handling. I really like the improved handling, in the turns, the RAS provides. If you go to their website you can see a video as well as get a more detailed explanation of how it works.
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Old 01-21-2014, 08:08 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tinlizzie23 View Post
Perhaps I didn't state it properly. I was always under the impression that you were indeed returning weight to the front TV axle by leveling the the TV. In other words, by leveling, you were returning the TV's configuration to approximately what it would be without anything on the hitch. I am certainly not an expert, but after 40 years of towing, it seems to me that if you have sagging at the rear, you are NOT distributing enough weight to the front axle. And I have never in all my years of towing in this manner seen the type of tire and suspension wear you refer to.

I may not be saying this just right, but the reason I posted to begin with is that proper use of the WD hitch should eliminate need for air bags or other suspension mods. Am I wrong about this, too ?
Have to agree with you. Let me state it this way, the truck is level when the TT is not hooked up. The truck sags when it is. Wow! I wonder why? Could it be all the tongue weight that was added? Yup!!

The WDH is designed when properly set up, to distribute the weight off the rear to the front axle of the TV. In doing so it tends to level out the TV. The purpose of the hitch may not be to level the TV but that is the practical effect. Air bags or what ever are not necessary when the hitch is properly set up.
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Old 01-24-2014, 01:19 PM   #16
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Guess I'll put my two cents in here from a mechanics perspective. I totally agree with the comments about correctly setting up the WD hitch.

If however after properly setting up the hitch, the TV does not return to somewhat level, the geometry of the TV has changed. Most of the time if the angle from front to rear is not too excessive - no problem. BUT sometimes the angles can make a difference.

If the front to rear changes too much the caster angle of the front may be affected. Caster is not a wear angle but it is used to control wandering and that change can make being passed by an 18 wheeler a true adventure.

The rear being loaded will also cause a change in the driveshaft angle and may cause a vibration only noticed when pulling the TT. It can also cause premature wear of the universal joints and eventually may cause failure of the driveshaft.

I added a set of air-adjustable shocks to my 96' Tahoe even though the ride height did not change much when it was loaded. The complete kit from justsuspensions.com cost me about $60.00 - cheap insurance in my book. I keep them at about 30 psi without the TT and increase the psi to about 90 for towing.

Like I said . . . my 2 cents worth
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Old 01-24-2014, 01:55 PM   #17
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I've been considering the Roadmaster Active Suspension and am curious to hear what more you guys have to say. Other than "it's great".

Specifically, my WD hitch is setup almost perfectly; verified on CAT scale that I'm 100 lbs short of getting the front axle back to unloaded weight, tongue weight is nearly perfect at 12.8% of loaded trailer weight. I'm near the top of my truck's capacity, but still under. My problem is that it seems like the rear of the truck still bounces quite a bit. Almost like porpoising, but not quite. A lot of the roads we travel are pretty rough thanks to oil tankers and gravel trucks. After we go over a good sized bump, the rear bounces one or two times too many for my comfort before it calms down.

My dad (ASE mechanic for forever and now runs commercial trucks) says suspension add-ons won't help that, but everything I read about RAS says it will. My rear end doesn't sag all that much more than it's supposed to now, so I'm really just looking for something to calm the back of the truck down on rough roads with a full load. I don't want to do airbags because if I do it the way I want, it's going to cost A LOT, and I don't want to have to worry about them.

Thoughts?
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Old 01-24-2014, 02:09 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Camper_bob View Post
My problem is that it seems lAfter we go over a good sized bump, the rear bounces one or two times too many for my comfort before it calms down.
Controlling the oscillation is all about shocks.

The stock shocks on the Titan are marginal at best, and wear out very quickly(I should know since I have a 2010). Check out the Titan forums. Most people got to the Bilstein 5100 or HDs.
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Old 01-24-2014, 03:19 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by NewBlackDak View Post
Controlling the oscillation is all about shocks.

The stock shocks on the Titan are marginal at best, and wear out very quickly(I should know since I have a 2010). Check out the Titan forums. Most people got to the Bilstein 5100 or HDs.
You are correct. Also, I see this often going down the road and I want to yell out the window, "you need shocks"! This is true on all makes, stock shocks are not designed for constant heavy loading.
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Old 01-24-2014, 03:24 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by eldermike View Post
You are correct. Also, I see this often going down the road and I want to yell out the window, "you need shocks"! This is true on all makes, stock shocks are not designed for constant heavy loading.
So then, getting into the springs will do nothing for me? I was leaning this way (no pun intended) because of the loaded and unloaded benefits many claim from the RAS. (less axle wrap, less body roll, better handling characteristics under load, less wheel hop on washboard roads...) And I don't really want to stiffen the unloaded ride if I don't have to.
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