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How do you decide how high to mount the hitch?


remoandiris

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Most of the pics I see of RV haulers shows the hitch at the rear kind of recessed into a dovetail. They don't look very high. How do you determine how high to build up the hitch mounting location?

 

Do you level the coach and subtract a few inches so it is just a little nose down when towing? Is it trial and error and just takes a bit of fitting prior to final welding/install?

 

Standing next to my dually p/u, my Airsafe hitch looks much higher than the hitch on any of the HDTs.

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The trailer should be level in tow. Anything else puts extra load on the leading axle (nose low) or the trailing axle (nose high).

 

The pin on the trailer should allow an adjustment of the pin extension, usually in increments of 2".

 

The high of the hitch plate needs to be in the area of 45"-47" but your trailer and the pin extension will be the actual number.

 

Perfectly level with increments of 2" will be impossible but you get as close as possible.

 

The reason for the inset is the typical frame height of an HDT is 40". The necessary air hitch (to protect the trailer) is in the 11"-15" height so needs to be recessed to get in the 45"-47" range.

 

See Air Hitch

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There is a standard height for the semi trucks pulling the commercial trailers. I want to say its 42"??? or there abouts.

The ET hitch has been designed to be installed so the hitch head rides at the correct height using a leveling valve. I believe most rv manufacturers that build 5th wheels try to stay near this measurement. But the LGT trucks have grown progressively taller over the last 10 years.

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Rick W and I were just having this discussion the other day. I agree with what has been said, and want to direct you back to Mark's comments. It really all depends on what the level height is of your trailer as if you were towing it.

There can be differences in your trailer that makes it not conform to others and the suggested hitch height. Example would be if your axle system / suspension system had been flipped allowing more clearance from the ground. Also a big one would be if your trailer has air suspension. So find some level cement put the front legs of your trailer down and then get it as close to tow level as possible. Plus if you have air suspension - air it up to find the right pin height (mainly listed for others who may be reading this).

My level height is at 49 3/4 inches. I know of another that was at over 50 inches.

Note: This method may stop you from being able to tow someone else's trailer if needed (most of our insurance companies wont allow that anyway) , or for your trailer to be towed by another truck. It could also make it difficult it you change trailers (or trucks) in the future. Also check your pin box and see if you are able to extend it lower (if you require a higher hitch point) and by that I mean do all the bolts in your pin box still get utilized if you lower the pin box. I was going to be without 4 of my 10 bolts if I did it that way. Not a good plan.

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