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Old 11-19-2009, 06:47 PM   #1
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Count your blessings Stan...

I've been trying to help Stan locate his Suburban and found it online. After seeing the pictures and knowing what condition the T-299SR ended up in, I honestly am amazed they survived.

Stan.... Get well! There's a reason you are still with us....

Gary













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Old 11-19-2009, 06:52 PM   #2
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After looking at the pictures again, I found something interesting...

Notice how the hitch head ended up..

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Old 11-19-2009, 08:14 PM   #3
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Gary

Boy you are a good internet hunterÖ These things are upsetting to say the least.

To Sunline Club Members

If any Sunline owner needs helps setting up your WD hitch, sway control, has issues with sway or towing please create a post in the Towing section here on Sunline club asking for help. This is the forum to ask for help with no put downs and we try to be a factual as we can. There are no dumb questions when it comes to towing. There are many of us willing to help you sort out your system the best we can or point your where to go and get help.

Stan and Peggy, we wish you the best and a speedy recovery. If you ever want to sort out in your head what may have gone wrong, let us know, we are hear to listen and learn from your very unfortunate accident.

John
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Old 11-20-2009, 06:54 AM   #4
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OMG, since we are newbies here, we can only offer our prayers for your quick recovery - whatever happened.

John - for us newbies, what did happen, so that we can avoid the same thing. Was this a trailer accident?
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Old 11-20-2009, 07:01 AM   #5
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Stan and Peggy, we are wishing you a very speedy recovery,,,,seeing the damage to the Surburban and trailer and being an EMT - you are very lucky.

Gary ~ John - I showed Leo the pics and his first comment was about the hitch - is it possible that this is one of the hitches with two balls???? Perhpas the top ball snapped off???? If this was a one ball hitch and the pin snapped I think it would be more likely to come OUT rather than spin in the receiver end......
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Old 11-20-2009, 04:19 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron & Alice
OMG, since we are newbies here, we can only offer our prayers for your quick recovery - whatever happened.

John - for us newbies, what did happen, so that we can avoid the same thing. Was this a trailer accident?
Ron and Alice,
Stan was driving westbound on I-70 and had just climbed South Mountain, near Hagerstown, MD. Just after cresting the hill, his Sunline started to sway badly. He tried accelerating out of it, but there was traffic ahead of him. He thought to try using the brake controller's lever, but let off the gas pedal as he was reaching for it. Once he let off the gas, the whole rig swayed uncontrollably. It was then, that the Sunline flipped onto it's right (Door) side. The rotational force of the TT, pulled the Suburban along with it. When they came to a stop, the Suburban was on it's roof and Stan and Peggy were trapped. All of the windows in the Suburban were shattered and both of their dogs got out. Only one of their dogs was able to be recovered by animal control.

From looking at the picture of the hitch and seeing the coupler on the TT, it is a true testament to the quality parts Sunline used for their frames. I will try to remember to take a picture of the coupler tomorrow. There really isn't much damage to it and we were able to tow it here.

Gary
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Old 11-20-2009, 04:24 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poppy & Nana
Gary ~ John - I showed Leo the pics and his first comment was about the hitch - is it possible that this is one of the hitches with two balls???? Perhpas the top ball snapped off???? If this was a one ball hitch and the pin snapped I think it would be more likely to come OUT rather than spin in the receiver end......

Stan knew better, than to use friction sway control. What he had, was an old style Reese dual cam setup. Where we believe the trouble started, was that he was sold a set of new style trunnion bars and told it was fine to use with the old style cams. I am trying to retrieve those bars, but not having much luck.

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Old 11-20-2009, 04:35 PM   #8
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This is a subject of high interest to me.

Does anyone know what initiated the sway? the speed at wich they were traveling?

Thank you
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Old 11-20-2009, 05:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Honda03842
This is a subject of high interest to me.

Does anyone know what initiated the sway? the speed at wich they were traveling?

Thank you
We believe that the sway was allowed to happen, because of the combination of cams/WD bars he was using. He had the new style WD bars and the old style cams on the TT. The sway occured just after he crested a mountain.
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Old 11-20-2009, 07:55 PM   #10
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Stan knew better, than to use friction sway control. What he had, was an old style Reese dual cam setup. Where we believe the trouble started, was that he was sold a set of new style trunnion bars and told it was fine to use with the old style cams. I am trying to retrieve those bars, but not having much luck.

Gary[/quote]

What is wrong with friction sway bars? I know they "damper" sway not prevent it. I've read that the Cam Lock style prevents it.
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:05 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peety_Sunliner
What is wrong with friction sway bars? I know they "damper" sway not prevent it. I've read that the Cam Lock style prevents it.
From what I've heard quite a few times, friction sway controls become basically useless for any trailer over about 26', and pretty much any slide trailer. The size of the sidewalls of the larger trailers give a larger surface area for wind to push on, and the leverage is just too much for a friction sway control. It just can't be tightened enough to keep the trailer in control. I personally wouldn't use them on much more than a 24' if I had the choice.

Jon
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:20 PM   #12
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We use the friction sway bar and it works well on our little trailer. The tightening level is important. I've seen another camper over tighten and all it did was bend the mounting plate on the hitch because it couldn't or barely moved on turns.

Hill cresting can be an issue I assume because there can be an angular change between trailer and tow vehicle and a speed change. It's more complex the more I think about it.
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:47 PM   #13
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I think mine works pretty good right now. my 98 is only 26' and i never had any real problems with sway except when the 18 wheelers pass me on I95. I try to tighten it up alittle more when i get on interstates and i never exceed 60mph. I'm planning on making a 6000 mile trip next summer going west to Carlsbad Caverns, yellowstone and, back to Ga. Has anyone made such a long trip to the windy west? do yall think my fricton bar set up is good for this kind of trip or should i plan on upgrading to the equi-l-zer set-up?
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:49 PM   #14
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after reading about Stan's accident and possible hitch issue it makes me alittle nervous.
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Old 11-20-2009, 10:02 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peety_Sunliner
I think mine works pretty good right now. my 98 is only 26' and i never had any real problems with sway except when the 18 wheelers pass me on I95. I try to tighten it up alittle more when i get on interstates and i never exceed 60mph. I'm planning on making a 6000 mile trip next summer going west to Carlsbad Caverns, yellowstone and, back to Ga. Has anyone made such a long trip to the windy west? do yall think my fricton bar set up is good for this kind of trip or should i plan on upgrading to the equi-l-zer set-up?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Peety_Sunliner
I think mine works pretty good right now. my 98 is only 26' and i never had any real problems with sway except when the 18 wheelers pass me on I95. I try to tighten it up alittle more when i get on interstates and i never exceed 60mph. I'm planning on making a 6000 mile trip next summer going west to Carlsbad Caverns, yellowstone and, back to Ga. Has anyone made such a long trip to the windy west? do yall think my fricton bar set up is good for this kind of trip or should i plan on upgrading to the equi-l-zer set-up?
Hi Petty

Your comment on when semiís pass you have some issues, pending what the issues are may be the early onset of a bigger problem, or just the physics of a very large object passing you. If you are doing a fair level of steering corrections when a semi passes, that is not a good thing and may indicate a towing setup issue to close to the edge.

To make a stable towing rig the TV, the Hitch and the balance of the TT are all important. Only addressing one will not fix all.

If you feel you would like a TV/TT/hitch review to see where you stand, take out a post in the Towing section here and we will be very glad to review what you have and see if anything can be more optimized.

Needs are:

TV, make, year, model, cab style
TV tire brand, what size air and pressure they are at front and rear when you tow.
TT, year and model
Present hitch and what size WD bars
Any TV fender height measurements unhitched and hitched if you already have them. If not we can help you get them.
TT stance when hitched. How far from level is it? Nose up, down or true level and by how much?
Ideally loaded scaled axle weights of the TT and the TV.

This will get us started to see what you have and if anything big jumps out. If you have never been thru this before, most setups can be optimized by adjustments if what you have and understanding what affects what.

Glad to help if you so choose to.

John
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Old 11-20-2009, 10:04 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peety_Sunliner
I think mine works pretty good right now. my 98 is only 26' and i never had any real problems with sway except when the 18 wheelers pass me on I95. I try to tighten it up alittle more when i get on interstates and i never exceed 60mph. I'm planning on making a 6000 mile trip next summer going west to Carlsbad Caverns, yellowstone and, back to Ga. Has anyone made such a long trip to the windy west? do yall think my fricton bar set up is good for this kind of trip or should i plan on upgrading to the equi-l-zer set-up?
Hi Petty

Your comment on when semiís pass you have some issues, pending what the issues are may be the early onset of a bigger problem, or just the physics of a very large object passing you. If you are doing a fair level of steering corrections when a semi passes, that is not a good thing and may indicate a towing setup issue to close to the edge.

To make a stable towing rig the TV, the Hitch and the balance of the TT are all important. Only addressing one will not fix all.

If you feel you would like a TV/TT/hitch review to see where you stand, take out a post in the Towing section here and we will be very glad to review what you have and see if anything can be more optimized.

Needs are:

TV, make, year, model, cab style
TV tire brand, what size air and pressure they are at front and rear when you tow.
TT, year and model
Present hitch and what size WD bars
Any TV fender height measurements unhitched and hitched if you already have them. If not we can help you get them.
TT stance when hitched. How far from level is it? Nose up, down or true level and by how much?
Ideally loaded scaled axle weights of the TT and the TV.

This will get us started to see what you have and if anything big jumps out. If you have never been thru this before, most setups can be optimized by adjustments with what you already have and understanding what affects what.

Glad to help if you so choose to.

John
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Old 11-21-2009, 04:42 AM   #17
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We have done the trip west many times and love driving in the west compared to the east. Though people drive a little faster, there are a lot fewer of them. One additional thing we do to reduce the effects of passing vehicles is to stay a little more to the right.

There can be high winds in some areas, but they've never been a real problem for us. If it's too windy we simply stop. We watch the weather forecasts and are willing to adjust our schedule, just stay somewhere an extra day if its going to be windy.

I think the lower traffic density is a big, I know whenever we're returning home I dread driving in the northeast or near any rush hour city.

We were once in Halifax Nova Scotia and a radio station was mentioning there was a traffic jam at some toll booth or bridge, a back up of eight cars..... everything is relative.
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Old 11-21-2009, 07:55 AM   #18
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I personally would NOT tow a 26 footer with just a friction bar, but that's me. My life and everyone elses depends on me having the safest set-up that I can.



I HAVE towed MANY thousands of miles out west, and I would not tow a 26 footer out there with just a friction bar.

Yep, sure lots of folks do it, BUT, when my life "might" depend on controlling my rig, I want all the advantages I can get on my side. Plus with the dual cam or equalizer, once your initial install is tuned in, you don't have to guess "IS it tight enuff, or geesh is it TOO tight"

I'm all for towing with the best safety equipment that I can use.

Kitty



To clarify my post, MOST of all my travels out west were done with a 99 Chevy Blazer towing a 1986 T-1661 and for this combo I "DID" use a friction sway control, but once I stepped up to the T-1950 & larger Sunlines, I felt I would have a MUCH more stable combo with the dual cam setup. I did not intend to imply that "anyone" recommended towing a 26' trailer with a friction sway control. My MAIN concern is safety. Sorry for the confusion.
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Old 11-21-2009, 08:14 AM   #19
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Ok folks, now I am really nervous with all this talk and us being newbies. (Gary, thanks for accident info). We bought a truck with the hitch already on it, and trailer package installed (he used to haul a 5th wheel). Our trailer is a 264SR, which is about the size all of you are talking about. But how do we know if our hitch/hitch weight/ or whatever is good enough??? Ron assures me ( ) that the trailer dealer did everything properly, and the anti-sway bars are good, but you now have me concerned after seeing these photos. (and you guys are talking mechanic-ease, not plain English, lol).

Is there any way we can be certain what we have is good enough?? After all, it is our life we are talking about...

BTW, Ron is not the computer guy, I am - that is why it is ME doing all the talking, questionning, etc.

TKX,
Alice
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Old 11-21-2009, 08:23 AM   #20
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John, I just reread everything, and I printed off your list of questions regarding hitches, etc. Now...I will see how many of them Ron & I can figure out, so that you can try to assess our situation - thanks!
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