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Unread 04-13-2011, 11:05 PM   #1
porrsher
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So who's towing out there?

Hey guys,
Small dilemma here, I just bought a small size (18ft) Hybrid Travel Trailer for camping trips. When I hooked it up to the ZJ I quickly discovered that it almost popped a wheelie. So long story short, I am now aware that I'll be needing a Weight Distribution Hitch. The trailer weights in at 3100 empty, I would guestimate it at 3600 +/- with all gear. Tongue seems to be about 400.

I'd like to get some feed back from anyone towing similar loads with their ZJ. I am wondering if the 5.2L would be fine and I'm concerned about the short wheel base.
Feed back really appreciated. I really do not want to be unsafe while towing.


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Unread 04-13-2011, 11:40 PM   #2
BrandonLong
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How are the springs?
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Unread 04-13-2011, 11:55 PM   #3
biebs53
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Is it all stock suspension? I only flat tow the TJ or baja bug with my ZJ. Use the f150 with air bag suspension to tow the boat.
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Unread 04-14-2011, 01:02 AM   #4
HeavyArms
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the previous owner of my zj towed a camper about the same size. not sure about the weight but i know the lenght was close. he told me it did okay.

well when i got the jeep it had a rebuilt trans, whole new cooling system, and E load range tires. didnt think much of it at the time.

turns out that the "frame" was cracked on each side right after the reese hitch. twards the front of the jeep right after the shock mounts. so be carefull towing a heavy load and check for cracks afterwords.
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Unread 04-14-2011, 01:07 AM   #5
RobsCrawlin7
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you should be fine with the weight distro hitch. I LOVE having my 350, i never worry about towing.
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Unread 04-14-2011, 01:08 AM   #6
Technohead
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You will be fine. Weight distributing hitch will make a WORLD of difference. If you tow regularly then change tranny fluid alot more often.
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Unread 04-14-2011, 01:10 AM   #7
ZJ5point2GCL
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should be fine with with the weight distributing hitch, ive towed allot of weight, when the trucks are in the shop or just to see what it'll do, i mean they are not the best tow rig, but still pretty capable.
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Unread 04-14-2011, 01:11 AM   #8
NW-XJ
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You will have plenty of power, the front end will be a little bit lighter, But your brakes will suck. Electric brakes are a must (witch should be standard on any newer 18ft trailer) your tow rating should be 6500lbs, so a weight Dist hitch will make the job a breeze. Just becareful of that "breeze" on the highway!
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Unread 04-14-2011, 06:53 AM   #9
porrsher
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Thanks for the replies guys. The springs i feel are a littlr weak. After all it is a 17 yr old zj. it's bone stock. Heavy arms, with the zj's unibody, when you say cracked frame was that literally a crack under the Jeep? And yes NW your right about the brakes, luckily the camper has surge brakes.
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Unread 04-14-2011, 08:48 AM   #10
mrfister11
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my 95 zj with 5.5 inches of lift i hauled a 16ft flatbed trailer that weighed 2500lbs and put a huge tractor with a brush hog that hung off the end about 6-7ft.. almost too much for the trailer.. and the jeep drove fine. i drove down highway at 65 and alot of it was twisty hilly roads. .that jeep had 320k miles, 5.2l and never had the tranny out.. it bottomed out the rear springs which made for a nicer ride honestly.. brakes were ok just be prepared to stop with the weight i had.. your weight should be fine.. also my 96 5.2 that was bone stock i pulled about 5k and it also bottomed springs out and it drove really nice.. had my 6ft tall toolbox full of tools on the front of a flatbed trailer.. had no problem with it.. both these jeeps came with factory tow package.. make sure your trans shifts fine under that kind of load.. if it doesnt then dont pull anything.. ha
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Unread 04-14-2011, 09:34 AM   #11
Technohead
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Quote:
Originally Posted by porrsher View Post
Thanks for the replies guys. The springs i feel are a littlr weak. After all it is a 17 yr old zj. it's bone stock. Heavy arms, with the zj's unibody, when you say cracked frame was that literally a crack under the Jeep? And yes NW your right about the brakes, luckily the camper has surge brakes.
note that surge brakes are not compatible with most weight distributing systems. I think reese might make one that is.
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Unread 04-14-2011, 12:52 PM   #12
NW-XJ
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My flatbed trailer has surge brakes, keep in mind that style of trailer brakes can be extremely inadequate in alot of situations.. I highly suggest upgrading to E-brake axles.. If its a tandem axle, any trailer shop should be able to set you up.
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Unread 04-14-2011, 02:03 PM   #13
KingtheZJ
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i towed a suabru on a uhaul flat bed once with mine. the car was 3200 and the trailer was 1900. it had surge brakes and i barely knew it was there. it definitely weighed the back down thought. i would look at the towing air bags that go inside the coils if i was going to do it a lot.
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