Hitch hints and wagon masters

A VW or a PT Cruiser to tow your Airstream? RV Lifestyle has a number of articles about this and other interesting ideas. Andy at Can Am RV in Ontario is a source of much practical experience behind the hitch hints. The Wagon Masters articles are by M.B. & Karen Wilson. These articles are often selections from a full article in the magazine. The focus is for Canadians but the information is useful for any RV enthusiast.

Four Cylinder Towing starts out with the observation that

Trailers in Europe are very light, with good suspensions. European RV manufacturers neither understand nor use equalizing hitches, and believe it or not, they still use mechanical brakes. The four cylinder cars were cruising without difficulty at highway speeds, and they seemed to be handling the aerodynamic drag of their trailers without a problem. Even more interesting was the observation that the RV enthusiasts we encountered were towing on roads that were generally more challenging than ours. …

in Europe … the Jetta has a 3000 lb. towing recommendation. In North America it is rated at only 1000 lbs., likely because they don’t see the towing capability as a marketing advantage. We were able to install a very solid hitch platform on the Jetta that reaches forward of the rear wheels – we use a 550lb. Eaz-Lift hitch with a welded ball mount.

Eliminating Trailer Sway has an interesting definition of trailer sway:

In theory what causes a swaying action to build is that the trailer is actually traveling faster than the tow vehicle so it has to take a longer route down the road and if nothing absorbs the extra energy built up the sway will continue. If something gives the trailer more speed the sway will increase.

In testing a ‘disposable’ rig, they found that it was very difficult to get a rig with a properly adjusted hitch to an uncontrollable sway. When something was off, the natural tendency to correct by steering often made things worse.

Eventually we discovered that resisting the temptation to steer it out and just holding the wheel straight would allow one or two more swings of the trailer and then it would settle down.

Types Of RV Rallies gets into the different ways that RV enthusiasts group together and the benefits of different types of clubs.

we learned what RV clubs and chapters are all about. Not only that, we discovered that people can mean the difference between a successful or unsuccessful club. We’ve seen some RV clubs do great work for charities and the community, while everyone had a great time. However, club meetings can be the toughest part of the weekend rally. Believe it or not, we’ve witnessed grown adults arguing over who’ll get to bring the beans, and who’ll bring the corn for a potluck dinner. The key to a successful club is a good leader, one who is liked by the members and who is willing to work hard for the club’s interests.

As always, back up a bit and check the home page. In this case, you can find out about the RV scene in the northern part of North America. You’ll find a link to Garth’s article on Carbon Monoxide detectors for your RV. Magazine subscriptions are for 1 year (7 issues) at $19.99 CDN or $30 US. RV Life has been at it since 1971.

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