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Unread 05-10-2014, 08:57 PM   #1
orangejeep
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Towing Advice

I just bought a 2009 Livin Lite Quicksilver 10.0 pop-up camper (1050 lbs) to tow behind my 2006 TJ 4.0. When I bought it a few months back the trailer was perfectly level when connected. I added a Swagman Towing Bike Rack http://www.amazon.com/Swagman-Standa...an+4+bike+rack. Because of the length of the rack it puts the ball about 3 or 4 inches lower than level. Is this something I should be concerned about/ how should I fix it? Yes my first thought was to lift my Jeep, but I also just bought a trailer.

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Unread 05-11-2014, 06:28 PM   #2
MPond
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orangejeep
I just bought a 2009 Livin Lite Quicksilver 10.0 pop-up camper (1050 lbs) to tow behind my 2006 TJ 4.0. When I bought it a few months back the trailer was perfectly level when connected. I added a Swagman Towing Bike Rack http://www.amazon.com/Swagman-Standa...an+4+bike+rack. Because of the length of the rack it puts the ball about 3 or 4 inches lower than level. Is this something I should be concerned about/ how should I fix it? Yes my first thought was to lift my Jeep, but I also just bought a trailer.
The problem with a rack like that is that is lengthens your hitch by 2-3 times the length of a normal receiver hitch, which gives the tongue weight a lot more leverage on your TJ.

You'd be better off with a different kind of bike rack that doesn't put the trailer further back like that.
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Unread 05-11-2014, 09:29 PM   #3
orangejeep
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I agree, but I should be ok and reasonably safe with my current setup. Right?
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Unread 05-11-2014, 09:38 PM   #4
thantos858
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Put a bike rack on the camper you could also install a hitch mount to the back of it. Moving the leverage point like that makes it easy to change your steering ability. Not a lot of fun when you overload a vehicle and tip it backwards to lift the front off the ground and loose control.
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Unread 05-11-2014, 10:56 PM   #5
MPond
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orangejeep
I agree, but I should be ok and reasonably safe with my current setup. Right?
I wouldn't drive it that way. I'd do the same as the last post suggested - put the bike rack on the trailer.

If you get the Jeep rocked back like that and then have to stop quickly, it's going to get real squirrelly.
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Unread 05-12-2014, 05:19 AM   #6
smccollamjr
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I would either get a spare tire mount bike rack if it will fit or one that goes on top of the pop-up. Preferably one for the pop-up because TJ springs are pretty weak to begin with.
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Unread 05-12-2014, 08:13 AM   #7
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I agree that does't sound good, as it sounds like your tongue weight is too much. My understanding is that ideally you want 10 to 15%. To check it, get the tongue level and the trailer loaded, and you can even use a bathroom scale to roughly estimate of the weight. My trailer's is right at 10% when loaded, and it drops my hitch down by about a half inch or so, which is acceptable.

Anyway, I really like the Quicksilver trailers. I was almost considering the "off-road" 6.0. Does your trailer have brakes, as I think they had the option of surge brakes? My trailer has electric brakes and I installed a brake controller in my TJ. Also, about towing with a TJ, I find that mine feels a bit more stable on the road with the added weight behind it.

Enjoy the trailer!
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Unread 05-13-2014, 03:41 AM   #8
orangejeep
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I'm sorry but I may have miss explained things. The tongue weight is 175 lbs. because of the length of the rack it hangs down a little without the trailer. My Jeep doesn't appear to be overloaded with the trailer. It just seems like the trailer should be level.

Thantos858 - because of the way the trailer is designed you can't put bikes on the roof. Also, the bumper is way to thin to add a rack to the back.
Grogie - it doesn't have brakes. Stopping hasn't been an issue. I do love the trailer. What trailer did you go with?

Someone suggested a ball (1 7/8") with a 2" riser, but my hitch requires a 3/4" shaft and I have only found ones with a 1" shaft. I'm wondering if I took one to a machine shop to reduce the shaft? Do you think they could do that and test the strength?

I appreciate all of the advice.
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Unread 05-13-2014, 12:39 PM   #9
MPond
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orangejeep View Post
I'm sorry but I may have miss explained things. The tongue weight is 175 lbs. because of the length of the rack it hangs down a little without the trailer. My Jeep doesn't appear to be overloaded with the trailer. It just seems like the trailer should be level.

Thantos858 - because of the way the trailer is designed you can't put bikes on the roof. Also, the bumper is way to thin to add a rack to the back.
Grogie - it doesn't have brakes. Stopping hasn't been an issue. I do love the trailer. What trailer did you go with?

Someone suggested a ball (1 7/8") with a 2" riser, but my hitch requires a 3/4" shaft and I have only found ones with a 1" shaft. I'm wondering if I took one to a machine shop to reduce the shaft? Do you think they could do that and test the strength?

I appreciate all of the advice.
If it's hanging down without the trailer, then either your Jeep isn't level, or your hitch receiver isn't level. If it's the hitch receiver, I'd be concerned.
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Unread 05-14-2014, 03:53 PM   #10
thantos858
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orangejeep View Post
I'm sorry but I may have miss explained things. The tongue weight is 175 lbs. because of the length of the rack it hangs down a little without the trailer. My Jeep doesn't appear to be overloaded with the trailer. It just seems like the trailer should be level.

Thantos858 - because of the way the trailer is designed you can't put bikes on the roof. Also, the bumper is way to thin to add a rack to the back.
Grogie - it doesn't have brakes. Stopping hasn't been an issue. I do love the trailer. What trailer did you go with?

Someone suggested a ball (1 7/8") with a 2" riser, but my hitch requires a 3/4" shaft and I have only found ones with a 1" shaft. I'm wondering if I took one to a machine shop to reduce the shaft? Do you think they could do that and test the strength?

I appreciate all of the advice.
Seems like your trailer tongue weight is in range for the bike rack and vehicle.

Like said check for level of the jeep and hitch.

When you load the trailer and connect it with a normal ball hitch is it low or fairly level? If its fine I would get a known straight edge on that bike rack since its probably warped. A possible fix is removable tow blocks not the best ride in the world but if your not being super aggressive they work.

For the hitch I would run a tube from the bumper to the next cross member and either bolt or weld this will give more strength and more than enough for a few bikes.

I don't know of a machine shop that will test the strength on a shaft like that. A better option would be to slap a tube over the smaller one weld it then drill the larger hole.
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Unread 05-14-2014, 06:20 PM   #11
orangejeep
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So the bike rack is completely straight/ brand new. I know this sounds odd, but whenever you put a hitch into a receiver there is a little play. I've never really thought about it. But because of the length of the rack a slight drop down is amplified. I'm starting to think it is less of an issue. I'm going to put in my normal receiver and measure the distance between the ground and my hitch and compare that to measurements when I am using the bike rack. If there is much of a difference (which I am not anticipating) I am going to swap out the coupler on the trailer with and adjustable height coupler like this http://www.etrailer.com/Trailer-Coup...2563C0317.html.

I do appreciate all of the thoughts/ advice. Cheers!
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Unread 06-02-2014, 01:55 PM   #12
nate_053
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You could put the bike rack on the camper instead - there are some nice hitch mounted bike racks for the job at Reese.
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