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Old 07-22-2009, 08:03 AM   #1
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Reese WD question

Hello! Being a newer member to the forums, I have been reading a lot lately about the WD setups. My 2670 came with (I believe) and older Reese setup. Many of the setups I see have the cam setup and mine does not..my spring bars are completely straight and end with the chain links (not the round bars and are rated at 1000#). I followed the Reese instructions for the closest setup I could find and my measurements seem really close. The TT sat fairly level and the TV was a little lower in the rear (I do not have my exact numbers any more). I did not have a chance to weigh out all the axels. During towing, my TV seemed to drive well but I had some (forward/backward) surging...is there something I should look at adjusting for this? Is there a bigger issue I should be looking at?
Are the instructions for setting up my Reese WD hitch basically the same as other Reese WD hitches? or are there differences?
Thanks for any help.
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Old 07-22-2009, 11:14 AM   #2
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Re: Reese WD question

Hi Brick

Good for you researching this and learning about your setup. There are a number of us here on SOC willing to help the best we can.

I’ll try and ask and address some of your questions here.

Pictures, do you have any pictures of the hitch setup? We can see exactly what you have and that then makes the answers fit better.

See comments in blue

Quote:
Originally Posted by brickric
Hello! Being a newer member to the forums, I have been reading a lot lately about the WD setups. GREAT, good for you

My 2670 came with (I believe) and older Reese setup. Pictures here wil help tell us what you exactly have and which style.

Many of the setups I see have the cam setup and mine does not..my spring bars are completely straight and end with the chain links (not the round bars and are rated at 1000#). If needed/wanted there is still available a conversion kit to bolt on DC adapters to the ends of the bars and create a DC system. Need to know more about your propane tanks but this kit “might” work. http://www.etrailer.com/pc-SC~26000.htm

What are you using as an anti sway control system now?


I followed the Reese instructions for the closest setup I could find and my measurements seem really close. The TT sat fairly level and the TV was a little lower in the rear (I do not have my exact numbers any more). If we get into this more, may need you to get us some numbers when you are hitched up again so we can see where you are at.

I did not have a chance to weigh out all the axels. During towing, my TV seemed to drive well but I had some (forward/backward) surging...is there something I should look at adjusting for this? Is there a bigger issue I should be looking at?
Here we need you to explain the surging you are referring to. Do you mean the truck bobs up and down many cycles when a road bump comes along? This is straight ahead movement, not left to right wiggle. If so, we call this purposing. Like a Dolphin going up and down in the water. Which can be caused by a few things, some of which are WD settings, bad shocks on the TV. If you have left to right wiggle, that may be something else. Help explain what it feels like inside the truck and what in the road set this off.

Once we know what you are experiencing we can see if there is something that can be done about it.




Are the instructions for setting up my Reese WD hitch basically the same as other Reese WD hitches? or are there differences?
Thanks for any help.

The concept/theory of WD on a TV is about the same on any brand WD hitch. Now how each hitch adjusts to get the end result differs between brands and even style within the brand. And some barnds are confusing with the 1 size fits all adjustments for your specific TV. And Reese has changed there recommended one size fits all instructions over the years. Do you have a web link on which instructions you are looking at?
Give us some more details and we will see where we can help.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 07-24-2009, 08:20 PM   #3
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Here are some pictures I took today...hope they help.












The ball says 6000# on the top





not sure if the kit will work with my propane tanks. I should have pulled the cover...duh.

The surging mostly feels like my TV is going forward and backward...like I am gently tapping the gas pedal...
I also learned that my brake controller was installed upside down. When I purchased my TV, the brake controller was already installed (Curt Navigator 1) and when I got a new manual and studied it, I found that it was installed upside down which would affect the leveling. Maybe this was my issue...won't really know until I go on a trip again.
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Old 07-25-2009, 06:34 AM   #4
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Ric,

A couple of comments....

First, the porpoising (or hobby-horsing) you experienced may well have been due to the upside down brake controller. I am not familiar with that particular one, but many of them use a intertia system of some kind to control the amount of braking. A common one is a mercury switch which is really dependent on being upright and positioned properly. Another is a mechanical pendulum which again needs to be upright. However, if the brake controller was causing the problem, and you were only hobby-horsing, that suggests that the brakes aren't adjusted properly. If the brake controller is the cause, it should have been a more "jerky" feeling as the brakes would have grabbed stronger. It also would affect gas mileage greatly.

But this is easy to check now that you've fixed the problem with the controller install. Hook up and go for a ride.

Second, the DC conversion kit that John referenced is designed specifically for 4" or 5" A-frames. Yours looks to be a 5" frame but you will have to measure it to be sure.

Third, if the kit will fit your frame, the propane holder will have to be removed and then re-installed on top of the u-bolts. Some spacers and longer screws will take care of that. It's really not an issue.

Fourth, the friction sway controller that you currently have can be ok, but... Reese specifies that you need two of them for trailers longer than 26'. Friction sway controls are tricky, and can be reasonably effective or useless, depending upon how they are adjusted. Since they are adjusted each time you hook up for a trip, there's a margin for error.

The shank, trunnion head, ball, and trunnion bars you have are all just fine, IMHO. You have adjustment for both height and tilt angle of the trunnion head which is as good as it gets. If you adjust your rig per John's instructions, depending on the heights of your TT and TV, you may end up needing a deep drop shank and/or a high rise ball.

It is also possible that the porpoising is caused by a combination of trailer loading and adjustment of the WD system. John is going to walk you through that, I suspect, and he can put it in words much better than I.

Some other questions come to mind: First, are you experiencing sway now?

Does a passing 18 wheeler on the interstate cause the rig to move around on the road more than you think it should? (Pull me in, push me out sensation - if strong enough can cause sway that continues after the truck has passed you.)

One other small comment.. if possible, for future posts can you resize your pictures down to 640x480? The larger pic sizes make it difficult to read because everything scrolls off the screen. If you need help with that, drop me a PM. It is an very easy fix.
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Old 07-26-2009, 09:05 PM   #5
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Hi Brickric

I have not forgot you. Will type more yet to come. The pics really help. Now we know what you have. There are some options I think for your DC once we get everything sorted out.

Have you ever weighed the camper tongue?

What I'm seeing is 1,200# bars and an older Durango. My son in-law has the new body style Durango and the rear suspension is different I believe (I think) so I can't crawl under his to see what yours looks like.

Can you look up in the owners manual or on a sticker on the receiver and see what the receiver is rated for in weight distributing mode? I'm suspecting it might be in the 700# area. But you tell us. It might be more.

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Old 07-27-2009, 10:22 AM   #6
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Hi John -

Thanks for the reply. My 04 Durango was the first year for the new design. The receiver rate (with WD) is at 1000#.
I have not weighed the trailer tongue.

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Old 07-27-2009, 10:59 AM   #7
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Rich

Oh so it is the new body style. Good. Son in law will be over this week I'm sure and I can crawl under and look up...

I had envisions of the older Durango with the really really really long leaf springs in the back that might create a level of harmonics with a real light tongue and heavy WD bars.

I saw you had an older camper and then some how I connected it with an older Durango.. Why, have no idea.... Actually my son in-law’s may be a 04 as well or a 05.

Be back with later.

John
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Old 07-27-2009, 09:07 PM   #8
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Hi Rich

The son in law was over tonight to pick up the Grandkids from kid sitting when I came home from work. His is a 2005, but after reading up on line, do believe it is the same underneath as yours. He has the Hemi too.

What I saw was, torsion bar front end suspension and a solid rear axle which was surprising in a mid sized SUV. It has coil rear springs and a linkage connected to the rear axle differential to helps with stability. The receiver torque tube was part of the rear bumper but was solid to the truck frame. The 2” pin box was attached underneath in a well, different way then usual.

Does yours look like this?

Torsion bar front end


Solid rear axle with coil springs.




Receiver torque tube


2” pin box attached on the lower part of the torque tube


So now we know some about your truck. I looked up your camper. http://www.sunlineclub.com/docs/97.pdf

A 97 T2670, 26 feet 11”. 3970# dry weight and 485# dry tongue. (12.2% dry tongue) It is a center kitchen over the axle, rear bath, front bed room. Nice layout. Actually Sunline had a lot of nice layouts. It is only the last year or so they cut out some many of there layouts. Looking at the 90’s and early 2000’s they had a lot of options. Many unique.

Now we have a basic idea of the TV and the TT combo. Your comments.

Quote:
Originally Posted by brickric
snip… During towing, my TV seemed to drive well but I had some (forward/backward) surging...is there something I should look at adjusting for this? Is there a bigger issue I should be looking at?

Snip 2…

The surging mostly feels like my TV is going forward and backward...like I am gently tapping the gas pedal...
A few questions to drill down deeper.

1. Did this happen when you where just plain driving down the road on a nice level smooth road?

2. Does this occurs from a dead stop when you are accelerating?

3. Does this occur after you go over some type of bump in the road, large or small. Worse on larger bumps, less on smaller bumps?

4. When you stop hard or even easy, does it start this surging feeling you are talking about?

5. You talked about passing semi’s, do you notice yourself doing any level of steering correction when a semi passes you? You may do it automatically but just trying to get a handle on the feel inside the truck.

6. What do you have in the back of the Durango when you go camping? About how many pounds is behind the rear seat?

7. Tire pressure, what psi is the door sticker, what psi do you tow at, what is the max cold side wall pressure both front and rear tires? and what size/brand are they?

8. Anything else you can tell us about what goes on inside the truck as far as a feel to it?

I’ll hold off what I “think” is going on until you fill in those blanks.

The TT weights and the truck weights. Some where along the way if you want to totally sort this out, a trip the scale will tell all. But only after some setup things are confirmed and tweaked so you can get the most out of the scale trip. If you have any of those fender height measurements before hitching up and then after hitching up would help tell us how the WD on the truck is set.

On the DC, I’ll dig up some more pics of that and what that it might entail and some options.

The brake controller mounting. Good find and for sure needs to have been mounted correctly but I have a hunch that was not all of your issue.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 07-28-2009, 07:17 PM   #9
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Hi John - thanks for the reply. I really appreciate your help and insight into this....

Quote:
A 97 T2670, 26 feet 11”. 3970# dry weight and 485# dry tongue. (12.2% dry tongue) It is a center kitchen over the axle, rear bath, front bed room. Nice layout. Actually Sunline had a lot of nice layouts. It is only the last year or so they cut out some many of there layouts. Looking at the 90’s and early 2000’s they had a lot of options. Many unique.
My dad is a retired truck driver and hauled many Sunlines from the Denver factory to many dealers on the east coast. He remembers John Zimmerman (a part owner of Sunline - and even knew him when he was at Shasta before he came to Sunline). He was telling me how John Zimmerman helped Sunline to become the powerhouse in RV's that they were - and most of that is attributed to their quality and floorplans. He was also telling me of some of the demise of Sunline in the last years

Quote:
A few questions to drill down deeper.

1. Did this happen when you where just plain driving down the road on a nice level smooth road?
Mostly on smooth, level road. I remember it most going on interstate, but it also happens on some "regular" road too.

Quote:
2. Does this occurs from a dead stop when you are accelerating?
no...not acceleration.

Quote:
3. Does this occur after you go over some type of bump in the road, large or small. Worse on larger bumps, less on smaller bumps?
Did not notice on the bumps, it was too bumpy

Quote:
4. When you stop hard or even easy, does it start this surging feeling you are talking about?
not on braking..I'm pretty sure this is not a braking issue.

Quote:
5. You talked about passing semi’s, do you notice yourself doing any level of steering correction when a semi passes you? You may do it automatically but just trying to get a handle on the feel inside the truck.
no...but I was only on interstate for a few minutes...but did not notice any issue then

Quote:
6. What do you have in the back of the Durango when you go camping? About how many pounds is behind the rear seat?
well...I'm not a good judge of pounds...but when I first brought the coach home, there really wasn't much at all...but when I came home from my first camping trip, I did have some gear, but not much...I hate to really even guess...maybe 200 lbs?

Quote:
7. Tire pressure, what psi is the door sticker, what psi do you tow at, what is the max cold side wall pressure both front and rear tires? and what size/brand are they?
Door sticker - 33 front, 33 rear
Current psi (cold) both rear - 42,44
max cold psi - 44 psi
Goodyear Wrangler RT/S Standard Load P265/70 R17

Quote:
8. Anything else you can tell us about what goes on inside the truck as far as a feel to it?
Personally, I feel this is an issue with WD setup...I do not feel comfortable that I have the right settings. I followed Reese instructions for their current 1200 lbs. Adj. High-Performance Trunnion Style w/#54970 Shank but wasn't sure if the instructions were different or changed since mine is a little different.

I have not really looked under my Durango at the suspension system, but I cannot imagine it would be much different. From the few times I have been under my truck, I do remember seeing many of those parts.

Hope this helps.

--Rich
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Old 07-28-2009, 10:17 PM   #10
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Hi Rich

Wish you where closer, I would come over and we could go for a tow together and sort out your hitch.

Yes, I do believe that you suffer from not having an optimum WD setup. I know you followed the Reese instructions the best you could, but they are really not the best and can be interrupted several different ways.

The first thing to rule out is, is the WD on the truck setup up optimum? The ultimate way is a truck scale, however a tape measure will help get us started. When all said and done, we need to end up at the scales.

When you have time, load the camper and the truck with the stuff in it and where to load it, the way you go camping. Find a level spot with a hard flat surface. Blacktop or concrete. Air the tires like you have for towing

This post may be of help, http://www.sunlineclub.com/forums/ph...pic.php?t=3151 Here TheSteigers was mounting an entire hitch from the word go. That post is tailored to his situation. One of the days I will do a generic WD setup post that fits the Reese and other most brands. Maybe you will help fuel that effort...

Before hitching up, go around and document all 4 fenders. I do it this way thru the center of the wheel and I put a small piece of ele tape on so you go back to the same spot all the time. Do not be surprised if the left and right side have different heights. It is common.


Then hitch up with WD engaged and get another round of fender heights and record.

Also when hooked up, check the TT for being level, nose high or nose low and by how much. Write it down.

Let us know what you have.

You may be experiencing this:

1. WD not setup optimized.

a. Front end is too low or too high from unhitched weight.

b. If the front has too much weight over unhitched, the rear may not have enough and your axle loads are very high front forward making the truck nose dive.

c. If the front does not have enough weight on , too light, then the back may be overloaded and the front is bobbing up.

d. Ideally to start with, the front end is just returned to unhitched height and weight. The rear will be lower then unhitched and should be. Pending your tongue weight and WD setting, if the front has just returned to unhitched height/weight the back being 1” or 1 ˝” lower on a SUV is common. Pending the suspension the truck may or may not be level. If all you are going for is level, that can be a problem some times and not result in proper WD settings. Again, pending the TV suspension and the tongue weights. Being TV level is great, but it is more important to have the front end at the correct weight when WD is engaged. That may or may not yield a level truck.

2. We need to know your loaded tongue weight. We know you have 1,200# WD bars and a 485# dry tongue. Pending your loaded tongue weight, you could have a very heavy WD bar to the size of the loaded tongue. If you added 300# loaded tongue weight to the 485 dry, that is 785# loaded tongue using 1,200# WD bars. Pending the truck suspension and how the WD was set, that extra heavy bar may be making the back of the truck extra spring’y. It is so stiff, it is not flexing and putting a jolt back in the truck. It is not beyond imagine given the right nice cushy SUV ride that you “might” create a dynamic there.

3. Your TV shocks may be shot or close to it. If the TV shocks are gone, the combo of stiff WD bars and non optimized WD settings may end up creating a jerky suspension ride. The shocks dampen out how fast the up and down surging the truck is doing comes to a rest and or prevents it from building up.

4. If your rear axle is over it's capacity, that may set up a dynamic in the truck. Once WD is setup correct, need to get to a truck scale and do some weighing.

From the other end of a computer screen and what you have told us so far, and the little I know about the Durango, I believe yours issues are in 1 or all of the 3 maybe 4 above. I myself have not personally set up WD on a Durango, but I have on similar suspension of other brands. At this point I do not think you yet have a Durango specific problem.

Doing items 1 and 2 will go a long way to sorting this out. And getting your shocks checked will help rule that out or in as a problem. And number 4 needs to hapen too.

If you need me to explain more on how to do any of this let me know. Glad to explain more.

The DC. Once we know number 2 above, a WD bar change may be in your future. And if so, then getting new WD bars with the V notched ends make the new HP DC an easy fit for your truck. If we find you need above 800# WD bars, then we can go the older std DC and ubolts. I have some pics of my T2499 A frame that sure look like yours. Give me a night or so I will get them up so you can see what you are contending with going to the U bolt version.

Hope this helps.

John

PS Your Dad hauled campers for Sunline. Very nice! I never realized Dave Z came from Shasta. Learn something new here on SOC every day!
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Old 08-03-2009, 05:17 PM   #11
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Hi John -

Had the chance to go out today with the 2670 and do some setup...here are some of my results.

Durango measurements -

No hitch at all-
LF 35 9/16
RF 35 4/16
LR 36 11/16
RR 36 5/16

With coach - no WD
LF 36 6/16
RF 36
LR 34 4/16
RR 33 11/16


Level trailer - to bottom of frame 12 1/2"
level trailer - top of hitch 18"
level TV - top of ball 23 3/4"

Coach on TV (no WD) - bottom of frame - 14"
Coach on TV (no WD) - top of hitch - 19 1/4"

with 8 links in my WD -
LF - 36 3/16 (+10/16)
RF - 35 12/16 (+8/16)
LR - 34 11/16 (-2)
RR - 34 4/16 (-2 1/16)

I have my shank as low as it will go and I believe as tilted as I can. Wondering if I need another shank to put my 2670 lower. Even without a WD hitch, the TT is not level on my Durango.

it is 20" from the ground to the bottom of my shank at the receiver without the TT on...and 23 3/4" to the top of the ball.
Wondering if my Durango has a higher receiver than some others.
Towing home with 8 links, the TT is still nose up. I really need to keep my low-rider 2670 level...I am already hitting my skid wheels on just minor unlevel ground...I am heading to Michigan this weekend and hope to get this closer by then.

--Thanks again for your help!!

--Rich
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Old 08-03-2009, 08:52 PM   #12
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Rich

Good hunting.

You have 2 things not in your favor.

1. Not enough weight transferred to the front axle. Aggravates porpoising. Your 5/8" and 1/2" high shows this

How many chains links are you at? You can go down to 5 links under tension, don't go less or you can bind in a turn in the snap ups.

2. TT nose high. Not great. Aggravates sway in many cases, loads rear axle on TT heavier then it should.

If you can transfer more weight it will help the truck, however it will also raise up the to ball even more making a nose high TT even worse.

A new lower drop shank may be in your future soon. That is the only way to get out of this. They make them in 6" drop

The hitch head tilt, yes that older square washer head can only tilt so far.

Next time hooked up, pop some pics of the side view of the hitch and entire rig. I might see something that can help.

YOU are on the right track. Keep at it. Doing good.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 08-03-2009, 09:11 PM   #13
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Rich

Drop shanks.

Confirm this.

TT level. ground to top of ball coupler.

TV unhitched. Bottom of 2" pin box to ground. ( bottom of shank to ground)

It sounds like you need a 6" drop shank. This one I really like as it has a lot of fine adjustment to level out the TT Reese 54917



http://www.etrailer.com/p-54917.htm

Here is one 5 3/4" cost a little more.
http://www.etrailer.com/pc-WDS~63971.htm

If you can get the Reese 54917 that would be the one I would get. The cast one will work too but prefer the all steel.

It would look like this.



That is a 18 1/2" ground to top of ball coupler Sunline. And the truck was in the ~ (sorry I can't remember) Have to dig for it. But tell me the numbers above and we can make sure a 6" drop will work.

PS I think KayonKitty has one of those shanks for sale if it is not already sold to Medbill
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Old 08-04-2009, 12:05 PM   #14
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John,

Maybe you can help me out as well?

From ground to top of level TT coupler = 15 1/2"

From ground to bottom of shank on TV = 19 1/4"

I currently have a Reese 63970 and its as far down as it will go making my TT ride nose high and ripping the heck out of my skid bars. One is broken already.

I installed "supersprings" after getting the camper home and seeing how much it was sagging the suspension. Now with the springs installed it works out great but it lifted up the rear end under load. Springs only engage under a heavy load. Pretty cool upgrade but of course with it comes the need for a new shank.

I do plan on getting another TV asap either and F150 or a Dodge 1500 5.7 hemi. So I figure between the old and a new shank I should be alright.

Thanks for any help.

Billy
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