anti sway load sharing bars for short draw bars

Submitted: Friday, Aug 08, 2014 at 20:32
ThreadID: 109074 Views:2289 Replies:5 FollowUps:1
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I have what I percieve to be a maximum distance of 690mm between tow hitch area and cross member on caravan draw bar. Just wondering if there are anti sway bar set ups made that short, and if so any idea of average cost??? Can't go any further back due to front mounted locker box. Any help appreciated.

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Reply By: wholehog- Friday, Aug 08, 2014 at 22:50

Friday, Aug 08, 2014 at 22:50
What mass is in the drawbar lockerbox..?
What is the standard/weak vehicle springs for the task..?
AnswerID: 537407

Follow Up By: kevmac....(WA) - Saturday, Aug 09, 2014 at 09:16

Saturday, Aug 09, 2014 at 09:16
sway is probably major problem, wholehog. Mass in locker box would be 30-40kg at any given time & I only tow with a Commodore wagon which has heavy duty rear springs fitted. Is a 16ft single axle poptop I tow.
Is more of lack of room to mount the holding brackets on van drawbar due to cross member. Plenty of room underneath for sway bars themselves!
FollowupID: 821689

Reply By: gbc - Saturday, Aug 09, 2014 at 08:20

Saturday, Aug 09, 2014 at 08:20
You wouldn't be the first to 'trim' a couple of inches off the standard bars to make them fit - just saying ;)
AnswerID: 537413

Reply By: noggins - Saturday, Aug 09, 2014 at 10:22

Saturday, Aug 09, 2014 at 10:22
Depends on which one you actually want
Sway bars or Weight Distributing Hitch ( WDH )?

Both attach to the tow hitch and do totally different things.

If we knew which one you wanted the advise would be given for that particular purpose

A WDH is to restore some of the towball load back to the front/ steering of the vehicle.
They vary from a lightweight system , small 19mm(?) bar to one capable of lifting a towball weight of 300Kg

A Sway Bar is to stop / reduce the effect of side winds etc and to keep everything in alignment.
This can be a restrictive devise that either fits to the heavier systems that heavily restrict movement of the WDH to a heavy metal sliding plate with brake arrangement

Both types are made by Hayman Reece and for Real Advise I'd be going to the Van Sales in Albany and asking a few questions from the ones that deal in this stuff all the time.

Surprising how many think they're the same thing when in actual fact they do different things
AnswerID: 537416

Reply By: Bobjl - Saturday, Aug 09, 2014 at 17:07

Saturday, Aug 09, 2014 at 17:07
It is firstly imperative that you establish exactly what is causing/contributing to the sway issue. This may be not limited to the weight on the tow ball of course. Have you established the tow ball mass - the download onto the ball? there is no point trying to redistribute [excessive] weight, if there is none, it may be possible that there is a lack of weight on the tow ball and it is contributing to the issue. Obviously if the back end of your station wagon drops a fair amount when van is attached, then there is possibly a weight issue and WDH will get weight back to vehicle front wheels as well as the caravan wheels. In some cases the manufacturers compliance plate that contains the various weights [including tow ball mass], differ greatly due [as I expect you will know] to the payload and it's location in the van. Based on my experiences towing medium and large vans I am influenced that a WDH plays a critical role in achieving and maintaining a safe rig, obviously the longer and heavier the van the more important it is to redistribute the weight to ensure steering and vehicle dynamics are maintained [unless of course you are using a long wheel based truck].

I am unaware of any shorter length WDH - there are the shepherds crook like spring bars that may fit - search the web and I expect you will find them.

If you still have an issue then I am aware that it may be possible to safely extend the draw bar [thus allowing for standard bars to attach, but some careful research and expert advise would of course be required before proceeding.

You will likely benefit from reading the article "The Dynamics of Caravan Stability" written by the respected expert of many engineering subjects, Collyn Rivers.

If you cannot locate Collyns document let me know and I can email it too you.
Good Luck Bob
AnswerID: 537438

Reply By: kevmac....(WA) - Tuesday, Aug 12, 2014 at 23:19

Tuesday, Aug 12, 2014 at 23:19
Well had day off today so went to local caravan dealer today to discuss my problem. To suit my set up I can get sway bars(whatever) for $195. I even mentioned the discussion on here, but he still often referred to them as load sharing too. I appreciate the help that made me seek out my local expert. Thank you.
AnswerID: 537600

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