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Old 26 June 2011, 03:23   #1
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Anti snake?

A friend of mine has a 10m rib with 600HP on the back which apparently is a handful to tow, as it snakes badly, particularly down hill.

Has anyone advice on how to tame this setup. I've seen caravans with a thing like a big shock absorber fitted, would this be suitable.

Any advice welcome.
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Old 26 June 2011, 03:25   #2
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Has he measured the weight on the tow hitch?
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Old 26 June 2011, 04:34   #3
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As Martini implied, likely not enough tongue weight. Tongue weight should be about 7% (5% minimum, up to about 10% max) of the total trailer rig weight. Too much may lighten the load on the tow vehicle's front wheels, causing steering problems. Too little causes trailer sway.

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Old 26 June 2011, 04:40   #4
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As Martini implied, likely not enough tongue weight. Tongue weight should be about 7% (5% minimum, up to about 10% max) of the total trailer rig weight. Too much may lighten the load on the tow vehicle's front wheels, causing steering problems. Too little causes trailer sway.

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I would ask your friend to look at his car handbook as it should state a recommended Tongue weight for the model he drives.
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Old 26 June 2011, 05:00   #5
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With 10m & 600hp I'd hazard a guess he's well over the max towing capacity of the car
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Old 26 June 2011, 06:23   #6
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With 10m & 600hp I'd hazard a guess he's well over the max towing capacity of the car
It might be one of those useless landrovers currently being slagged elsewhere They'll pull 3500kg Not sure what an L200 will pull, probably the skin off a rice pudding...not
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Old 26 June 2011, 12:48   #7
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So how heavy would a 10m with 600hp all up with a full tank of Go Go juice be then?
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Old 26 June 2011, 13:08   #8
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So how heavy would a 10m with 600hp all up with a full tank of Go Go juice be then?
About 2500kg I reckon. Legal on a trailer behind a LR.
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Old 26 June 2011, 13:28   #9
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Thanks for your comments, car is a ...... Disco3

I think he said the nose could do with being heavier, but with a boat that heavy, it would mean a massive weight on the front to make a worthwhile difference and I'm not sure how to achieve that.

Boat and trailer are new from a good manufacturer, so would hope that the trailer design was generally OK.
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Old 26 June 2011, 13:42   #10
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I think he said the nose could do with being heavier, but with a boat that heavy, it would mean a massive weight on the front to make a worthwhile difference and I'm not sure how to achieve that.
Move the axles back on the frame to add weight to the hitch. Try a couple of inches and go from there.
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Old 26 June 2011, 16:10   #11
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I'm with Martini ! Even if the rig is legal , there is also a rule of thumb about not letting the rig exceed 85% of the vehicles weight . It doesn't take much to get a snake going ( speaking from several years experience with caravans ). Even mild ruts in the road from HGVs can set them off . I think there is a big clue in that it worse " going down hills " . Stick the load on a weighbridge complete with fuel and all the tut we usually end up carrying . Better safe than sorry
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Old 26 June 2011, 16:44   #12
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About 2500kg I reckon. Legal on a trailer behind a LR.
I'd go a fair bit higher than that, I know my boat is heavily built but at 8.5m with a pair of 225's it weighs 2500kg dry. Add 750kg's of fuel and 1500kg's of trailer...

then add 1.5m and another 150hp...soon mounts up

I don't have any issues towing mine but then I don't go over 30mph
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Old 26 June 2011, 16:46   #13
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Move the axles back on the frame to add weight to the hitch. Try a couple of inches and go from there.
Or move the boat forward. Moving the wheels back can make cornering "interesting"
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Old 26 June 2011, 16:51   #14
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the big LR's will tow virtually anything my RR towed a 7 1/2 tonner laden to 5 1/2 tonne up a steep local hill in the snow - with no issues - it is able to physically tow up to c. 7 tonne, and certainly cattle trailers on the back laden to its rating of 3 1/2 tonne are no issue... indeed it can take nearly a tonne in the boot at the same time! however pulling capability is not necessarily a guide to safe driving - I would def. look at the balance on the trailer as that is far more likely to be the issue... You can get stabilisers, as per the caravans, but I would want to start with a neutral handling rig and then go from there...

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Old 26 June 2011, 17:34   #15
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I would ask your friend to look at his car handbook as it should state a recommended Tongue weight for the model he drives.
Problem is that would be for the tow vehicle alone, and would be assuming the trailer is properly balanced (and the spec given so you can tell if it is within the tongue weight limit), which sounds like is not the case.

Exceeding the hitch weight for the vehicle results in the front wheel lifting (or undue rear compression) as described above, which is why it's listed as a safety factor.

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Old 26 June 2011, 23:52   #16
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Thanks for your comments, car is a ...... Disco3

Boat and trailer are new from a good manufacturer, so would hope that the trailer design was generally OK.
Why not ask them about the weight etc or do you already know?
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Old 28 June 2011, 17:08   #17
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Pump up the rear tyres on the disco, made a huge difference on mine. Also if he thinks its light on the hitch then thats asking for trouble.
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Old 28 June 2011, 17:17   #18
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Also - not sure about the suspension on the Discos - I think that it is air suspension like the rangies - if so, make sure that it is locked in normal mode - otherwise it will drop the car still at speed - unless of course they are now intelligent enough to spot a trailer plugged in!!!

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Old 28 June 2011, 17:35   #19
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I agree with Chris, first make sure the tyres inflated up near there maximum for the load rating. If that doesn't solve your problem, then the next step is balance.

With big trailers, a weigh bridge is the only way I know to check tongue weights. Have the vehicle off the weigh bridge and weigh the trailer while attached to the vehicle and weighed again while disconnected from the vehicle.

As Jyasaki said, aim for 5%-10%. On trailers this heavy, I would personally go closer to 5% as 400kg-500kg is a lot on jockey wheels and a lot of tongue weight for a single rear axle vehicle.
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Old 29 June 2011, 06:21   #20
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downhill is always the killer situation, where all the caravan accidents happen. Get rid of the speed before the descent starts before its too late. With the caravan I can pass lorries easily going uphill with a nice stable unit but get in at the brow of the hill and be prepared to be passed by them on the descent. Snaking on the downhill leg is a ***** to correct.
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