Side to Side Weight Balancing of a Caravan

Submitted: Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 12:26
ThreadID: 101730 Views:1592 Replies:2 FollowUps:9
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Hi all

Calling all people knowledgeable in caravan design.

I assume when a caravan is designed the aim is to balance the weights of all the fixed items both fore and aft of the wheels but also from side to side such that the caravan is not heavy on one side.

In adding some equipment to the van I keep coming back to the most ideal location would be on one front side of the van but this will add around 90Kg to one side. I could centre it at the back of the van but experimenting with that reduces ball weight to about 80Kg.

My concern is whether this is too much side to side imbalance and what the consequences might be in towing like that ?? Maybe that is better than towing with a lighter ball weight ??
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Reply By: olcoolone - Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 12:39

Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 12:39
Adding 90kg to one side is not going to make much difference overall..... if you were adding 3-500kg then that may be a big different.

The ideal way of designing is to place weight evenly over the van with a slight front bias to help tracking and stability.

The other thing is the vibration and shock load generated after the axle is greatly increased and will shake things more..... it's better the place items that can not handle shock and vibration forward of the axle.
AnswerID: 509125

Follow Up By: KenInPerth - Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 14:36

Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 14:36
Thanks as always.

With a bit of consideration to how I pack any other payload I can probably balance it out as well on the other side.
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Follow Up By: Flighty ( WA ) - Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 16:41

Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 16:41
Keninperth
Agree totally with olcoolone, but consideration should also be given to road "camber" when loading as well.
You will also have the odd instance of dropping of the road edge into the rough stuff when on the blacktop.
Cheers
Paul

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Follow Up By: KenInPerth - Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 16:51

Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 16:51
So I guess if the added weight is on the Right Front side then that would be the better side for it ??
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Follow Up By: Tim K3 - Wednesday, Apr 17, 2013 at 15:26

Wednesday, Apr 17, 2013 at 15:26
Hello olcoolone, I am wondering to know that 90kg at one side will not effect caravan. Is it okay to put 100Kg load on right side and left side remains 10 Kg?
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Wednesday, Apr 17, 2013 at 22:48

Wednesday, Apr 17, 2013 at 22:48
Tim if you're going to put 100kg load on the right side of the van everyone knows whatever weight you put on the right side of the van has to have a multiplication of 3.141599999999999 but you could get away with multiplying the load by 22 and then dividing it by 7....

Hopefully that has helped you out.
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Wednesday, Apr 17, 2013 at 22:54

Wednesday, Apr 17, 2013 at 22:54
Opps sorry I made a mistake....... should of been 3.14285714286...... it would of put it out by 0.00273%.
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Reply By: The Bantam - Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 18:01

Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 18:01
How heavy is this van?

Now consider that every time you drive your car, you dump about 90Kg into one side of it.

If you got too and weighed your van you may be shocked at how poorly balanced it is.

Its almost unknown for people to get a side to side split from a weigh bridge.

cheers
AnswerID: 509149

Follow Up By: KenInPerth - Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 18:35

Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013 at 18:35
It is only a light van - 1487GTM or thereabouts form memory.

I realise the 90Kg is somewhat significant to this particular van.

I am still looking at some options to perhaps centralise the extra weight somehow in the front half of the van.
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Follow Up By: ozjohn0 - Thursday, Apr 18, 2013 at 13:12

Thursday, Apr 18, 2013 at 13:12
Have a look at the layout of your van.
What side are the other heavy items. Especially the fridge and any battery.
Place your load on the opposite side, but not at the rear of the van.
You'll also need to consider the fact that any weight you add has to be included in the vans payload allowance. There are not to many vans that could take and extra 90Kg along with the water, LPG and everything else and still be under the ATM (GTM).
Ozjohn.
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Follow Up By: KenInPerth - Thursday, Apr 18, 2013 at 15:26

Thursday, Apr 18, 2013 at 15:26
ozjohn0

Thanks for this extra info. Ultimately I will do a weigh in to check.

Ken


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