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Old 08-19-2018, 06:05 PM   #1
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A-Frame & Leveling Jacks

OK.. went to take off from the campsite this afternoon and the A-Frame Tongue jack decided to fail, had to place the tongue/hitch very low due to the grade of the site and when I started to jack it up something popped and the handle just spins now! OK...so I started trying to use the front leveling jack to help lift the trailer and ...yeah you guessed it the C-style failed. OK..dug in the back of the Cherokee got out the unused scissor jack bundled to the spare tire and lifted the tongue up just barely enough to get the hitch to mate up! Whew!!!....
NOW...we are heading out again on Friday and I need to quickly replace this A-frame hitch jack. I have an Advancer and I think the rating of that jack was pretty low and I know the PO had replaced it (a poor job the bolts were a bit loose) not sure if he used the right rating jack? How high of a weight rating should it have? 1000lbs? 2000lbs? More?? The Advancer is only about 3500 lbs dry and not over 4000 lbs when we are towing it.. right now it is sitting on jack stand at my buddies garage.
The other question is about the leveling jacks. I am thinking of replacing at least 2 of the leveling jacks with scissor type as they seem more durable? Are they in fact stronger? I have two of the C type that are damaged (one from the PO backing it up too steep an incline) the other is a BAL that I believe may have been a light duty replacement as it does not match the back jacks at all. Have to go back through my old pictures when I was working underneath it last year.
Any ideas/opinions on jack types and sizes etc?
Thanks gang! I know I can count on all of you!
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Old 08-19-2018, 06:34 PM   #2
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Adding a photo of the back showing the BAL may be the original.
The one at the front folded up like a house of cards however...hmmm....
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Old 08-19-2018, 07:19 PM   #3
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For some reason pictures are easier on my phone than on the computer!IMG_20180819_165945.jpgIMG_20170702_141952~01.jpegIMG_20180819_170032.jpgIMG_20180819_170029.jpg
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Old 08-20-2018, 09:14 AM   #4
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Hmm, that does look like a light duty jack. The weight rating of a jack doesn't line up with the weight of the trailer though. The jack needs to lift the weight of the trailer's tongue (300-1200 lbs for an average Sunline), plus the weight of the rear end of your vehicle when hitching up with a WD hitch.

With your trailer, the 1500 lb jack was probably at capacity. A 2500 lb jack should be sufficient for a replacement, although there's no harm in going with more.

Just a heads up with replacement. The 1500 lb jack has a smaller shaft than the heavier ones. The top hole in the coupler, which is actually stamped/cast with the coupler, is a standard larger size. The lower support plate, which was welded on when the frame was assembled, is often that smaller size. You may need to enlarge this hole to fit a larger jack.

If the original jack was a 2000/2500 lb unit (which it may have been), this jack would have a lot of play in the lower hole, and adding a heavier duty jack should mean it'll slide right in.

Your BAL stabilizing jacks do look original, these were often factory. I actually saw a lot of Sunlines didn't come with jacks from the factory, because many dealers/owners opted to install scissor style jacks on the four corners instead. The stabilizing jacks you have are just that, stabilizing. They are not designed to hold much weight at all or lift the trailer, and they will fail easily if you try. On the contrary, scissor style leveling jacks can lift the trailer slightly, although not recommended, and are much stronger. They're like your car's jack, but bolted to the trailer frame. You can replace with these too- they are generally sold in pairs and about the same cost as the stabilizing jacks. As you probably saw, the stabilizing unit is one piece all the way across, so you'll have to replace the whole thing if you stuck with that kind anyway.
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Old 08-20-2018, 10:03 AM   #5
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Thanks!
I actually didn't notice the one piece nature of these!
I am going to order a pair of scissors and I have two old scissor jacks I am going to add to the 'stuff' in the trailer so I have extra lifting power if needed!
Just heading out to pick up the a frame jack so this info hit just in time! Was a bit worried as a 5000 lb heavy duty jack is just slightly more expensive at this retailer than a 2000 lb jack! $8 is worth the 2.5 times capacity!
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Old 08-20-2018, 11:22 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Draughty View Post
Thanks!
I actually didn't notice the one piece nature of these!
I am going to order a pair of scissors and I have two old scissor jacks I am going to add to the 'stuff' in the trailer so I have extra lifting power if needed!
Just heading out to pick up the a frame jack so this info hit just in time! Was a bit worried as a 5000 lb heavy duty jack is just slightly more expensive at this retailer than a 2000 lb jack! $8 is worth the 2.5 times capacity!
The only thing about going with a really heavy duty one, make sure it's still side wind. Sometimes heavier ones and cheaper ones are top wind/top crank. That's fine for a cargo type trailer, but when you have propane and batteries in the way on an RV, these can be really hard to use. Also, I think when you get more weight on it, the top wind can be harder to crank. It looks like you have a little more room on the Advancer tongue with the special LP tank cover, more than traditional Sunlines, but it could still hit depending on the handle.
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Past Sunlines: '97 T-2653 #5089, '94 T-2251, '86 T-1550, '94 T-2363, '98 T-270SR
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Old 08-20-2018, 12:04 PM   #7
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Yeah it's a top wind and I will check clearance when I start to install. My back is bad enough now that the top wind should allow to use my upper body more than pulling the side wind through the upswing. That was hurting!
I seriously considered an electric but needed it faster than the electric could be delivered at this point.
Old injury that is getting worse...have a pending neurosurgeon appointment later this year.
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Old 08-26-2018, 11:32 AM   #8
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New Bulldog in place and working great!
Also replaced the front stabilizer assembly with PeakTow scissor jacks...what an amazing difference!
Will be changing the rear soon!IMG_20180822_204543.jpg
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Old 08-26-2018, 12:35 PM   #9
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We love our electric jack. Back concerns here too. Could you post pics of your replacement of the stabilizer? We want to do that too. Financially thinking to start with back.
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Old 08-26-2018, 01:02 PM   #10
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Sure can...and a shot of the new tongue Jack in use this week as we camp on the shores of Lake Mindemoya, Manitoulin Island, Ontario, CanadaIMG_20180826_145604~01.jpgIMG_20180826_145617.jpgIMG_20180826_145649.jpgIMG_20180818_210659.jpgIMG_20180826_144217.jpg
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Old 08-26-2018, 02:12 PM   #11
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Thanks! Looking good and love your light! Waiting til after axles changed to decide which size/height for new stabilizer solution.
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Old 08-26-2018, 02:21 PM   #12
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Thanks..I made the leaf and am still working on getting the LED'S all working correctly...
I oversized a bit after the originals collapsed on us....the pair was $85 Canadian on Amazon...best deal I found as well on something strong enough for what I wanted... occasionally we are on a site that requires lifting a corner or end right off the ground to level the trailer. Great sites just more technical setup.
Curious if anyone has any insights as to best practice when that is necessary?
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Old 08-26-2018, 03:16 PM   #13
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Recently saw a long double axle TT that had so much stuff under One axle I could hardly believe it. Very level site too?
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Old 08-26-2018, 03:49 PM   #14
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I have a problem with stairs due to the back injury and I don't lift it any higher than necessary! Too high to climb!
I didn't get any pictures but last week the tongue was nearly on the ground and the back was almost fully extended. Door side tires were off the ground!
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