Towing car on trailer 1st time querie

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by bigbaz, Aug 18, 2009.

  1. bigbaz

    bigbaz Funster

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    Bought a Trailer to put my Car on ( 05-C3 Auto )as I was told I couldn't tow it on an
    A-frame because of the Auto gearlever was libel to jump out while travelling.
    So I decided to try the trailer out with the help of my mate bob ( funster 1476),
    Firstly we had to put some chocs under the trailer ramps because the front spoiler on the
    C3 was catching on the ramps.
    Took a few go's to get up the ramps (not level) but eventually we got it on,tied it down
    & tightened everything up on the trailer & we got into the motorhome to go & take it for
    a ride to see if everything was O.K.
    Now my m/home is the Fiat 3.0 Auto weither this makes any difference or not,but it was
    like pulling a boat which was on water as the van felt like it was jerking to & fro as we
    were driving along.
    Could this be because of the Weight or is it to do with it being Automatic.
    If anyone has any answers they would be very much appreciated as I will not be taking
    it out again till I can solve the problem?
     
  2. highwayman

    highwayman Funster Life Member

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    Hi Baz
    It's probably just the trailer 'nodding', After the campers gone over a bump you're feeling the trailer go over-it.
    Did you go for a long ride? We notice this effect when we take our boat to the harbour to launch (ie 1 mile ) but not when we tow to dorset as i think we get used to-it.
    Someone more knowledgeable will be along shortly to advise you but personally i don't think you've anything to worry about. :thumb:
    ps we tow with an auto as-well as a manual, it's not the gearbox :thumb:
    pps check the nose-weight of the trailer once you've got the car loaded, you may be putting too much weight on the tow-bar/ rear axle.

    regards...nige
     
  3. old-mo

    old-mo Funster Extra Special Life Member

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    First check the trailer brakes and second was it banging you up the back when you braked and thumping you when you pulled away ? if so I should check the hydraulic damper on the trailer.
     
  4. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    Hi

    Couple of things to check ..

    Is the trailer level when hitched up ?

    Slightly nose down is acceptable but NOT nose up

    As previously mentioned, Nose weight ..

    too light and it will bob about .. check using bathroom scales with a short piece of 2x2 timber in the tow ball .. from what I can remember from my tugging days should be between 50 - 80lbs .. but don't take my word, check with trailer manufacturer ..

    hth

    jim
     
  5. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    could very well be the nose weight.

    if i tow my 3500kg ifor williams when empty i dont really know its there.

    if i tow my little 6ft garden trailer i feel every jerk and bump.

    the williams is slightly nose heavy (50/60kg) while the garden trailer is very nearly perfect balance at the axle which is causing the jerking.....no nose weight.

    jims suggestion is the easiest way to check noseweight but....
    do you have prop stands on the trailer?
    if not you will need something propped under the back when you unhitch to check the noseweight or you'll never get it back on if it flips down at the back.
     
  6. takeaflight

    takeaflight Read Only Funster

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    Hi Big baz

    Do you know the towing weight for your Swift ?

    I reckon that you are probably towing close to 1500kgs.

    Roy
     
  7. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    ducato chassis kontiki's generally have a train weight of 5500kg so you could be right.

    3850/4000kg motorhome and 1500kg car and trailer.
     
  8. takeaflight

    takeaflight Read Only Funster

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    Hi Baz

    Out of interest is the trailer new or second hand and what make ?

    If second hand as well as checking brakes I would also invest in a grease gun you should find grease nipples on the Hydraulic Coupling (Hitch), also I would replenish the wheel bearing grease, while you are at it check the tyres for signs of cracking on the side walls.

    Before departing for France in June I did the above and found small cracks in the tyres due to the trailer standing in a barn since last September, the tread was like new so painful to have replace them but IMHO not worth taking the risk.

    Have a look here might help The Caravan Channel

    cheers roy
     
  9. bigbaz

    bigbaz Funster

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    Thank you all for your advice,but in the end I took the m/home back to were I had the
    Tow-bar fitted & got them to put some packing in so the ball didn't rock about in the
    shaft.
    Me & the missus are now down Newport with the m/home & car aswell seems to have
    done the trick had a very smooth journey down .
     
  10. slickmouse

    slickmouse Read Only Funster

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    Thats a new one, "they put some packing in the ball" sounds like you either have the wrong size hitch or balls
     
  11. davejen

    davejen Funster

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    ?????????????
    Dave:Eek!:
     
  12. Larrynwin

    Larrynwin Funster

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    PARDON :Rofl1::Rofl1:
     
  13. Snowbird

    Snowbird Funster Life Member

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    :Eeek::Eeek::Eeek:Can you keep us posted on your travel dates and times,preferably with the route.:Eeek::Eeek::Eeek:
     
  14. old-mo

    old-mo Funster Extra Special Life Member

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    I would like to know a bit more re the packing :Sad:

    Sounds strange and possibly a disaster waiting to happen,, (Heaven Forbid) I dont know really what to say "But" If it is the ball or coupling that is worn ,,, you cannot pack them,, if they are that worn they have had a lot of use over many, many years.. :Eek!:

    And should be scrapped/changed..

    I am thinking it more likely to be a bit of flex on your tow bar configuration,, and that is what they have beefed up, done properly not a problem..
     
  15. takeaflight

    takeaflight Read Only Funster

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    Hi Baz there is Newport Trailer center 22A Mill Parade
    Newport, NP20 2JQ, United Kingdom

    01633 221273

    If it was me I would probably swing by and just double check.
     
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