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Old 03-10-2009, 04:25 PM
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Trailer problem

Hi Folks,
I usually answer questions ,but this time I have a question . I don't know if I'm in the right place ,but here goes . I have a car trailer that my son and and I built it is a little on the heavy side . It is made with 4" channel side rails with 6 ,3" channel cross rails and 2 , 6" X 10' in a V shape to the couping the tongue about 42" past the front of the trailer is under the trailer and is fasten to the side rails . It has 14.5 " wheels and and I goofed on the springs and ordered 3500 lb thinking that was for a pair not each.
Now here is my problem ,when we tow this with my son's 96 1500 short bed Z71 pickup it tows smooth and tracks as straight as an arrow empty or loaded .
But when I tow it with 06 1500 2wd it will oscillate so bad that you have to tow at 70mph or better 35 mph , but it tracks fine .
I have the same Reese hitch as the 96 truck and trailer is at the same tongue height it also will buck when loaded but within reason
Any help would be great . thanks Justold

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Old 03-10-2009, 05:02 PM
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I'd bet that the tires on your Son's truck have stiffer sidewalls than your tires do.


Last edited by Joe G; 03-10-2009 at 05:13 PM.
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:22 PM
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I agree with Joe G tire sidewalls [try pumping rears to about 40 or 45 lbs]. Had the same problem years ago with mine. Tires were stiff but not enough tounge weight, need about 10%. I had to only move my car about 2 inches foreward to go from very bad to great.
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Old 03-10-2009, 09:44 PM
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trailer sway

Your son's is a 4 X 4, yours is a 2 wd, right? So your son's has a different suspension and different weight balance in the tow vehicle itself than yours does.

If bare hitch height is the same for both tow vehicles , what about hitch height when the trailer is hooked on? As you describe it, the trailer seems to act differently between two different tow vehicles, yet both are 1/2 tons. What about the suspension setups and tires on the two trucks? How much weight is on the tongue? Get out the ol' bathroom scales and check the tongue weight of the unloaded trailer? What is the weight of the whole trailer? You need at LEAST 10% of total trailer weight to be on the hitch itself. I'm guessing that you need a bit more tongue weight, both empty and loaded to make it "happy" behind your p/u.

Does it "sag" more behind your son's truck? If it sits a tiny bit more "nose down" behind one than the other, that may make a world of difference.

The cure (this means work!) may involve moving the trailer axle rearward about 2 inches or so, to shift weight balance forward. Extending the tongue may mask the problem, but this is NOT the preferred solution for many other safety-related reasons
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