Has anyone tried replacing stabilizing jacks with leveling jacks?

Discussion in 'A-Frame PopUps' started by cindy_k, Sep 3, 2021.

  1. cindy_k

    cindy_k Member

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    The camper is so light we are wondering if it would work to replace the stabilizing jacks with leveling jacks to use to level the camper. Instead of trying to drive it up on blocks etc.

    Thanks in advance!
    Cindy
     
  2. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

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    Very bad idea... unless you want to twist and damage the frame..
     
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  3. eoleson1

    eoleson1 Well-Known Member

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    I don't know about your A-frame, but many pop up manufacturers specifically state that frame damage can occur if you try to level with the stabilizers.
     
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  4. BikeNFish

    BikeNFish Well-Known Member

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    Absolutely not.

    There is a reason that NO manufactures have you level a camper from the corners with leveling jacks. Your frame WILL bend, possibly permanently. Bending the frame will possibly make it so your door does not line up and could damage the hinges. Also, your walls may not line up, raise properly and you could damage those hinges.
     
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  5. DiamondGirl

    DiamondGirl Adventures with KODI in AZ

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    I agree with those posting before me. The manufacturer doesn’t have them installed for a reason. I don’t recommend it either. To confirm whether it’s a good idea or not, try calling your trailer manufacturer. I had an Aliner and was able to call Kevin at Columbia Northwest before making those types of decisions. He provided lots of guidance throughout the years. You can contact Midwest Aframe Repair and service via Facebook or Google them. John has lots of years of experience with Aframes of all different brands.

    It is a known fact among most Aframe owners that the trailer frame isn’t very strong and can be damaged easily.

    Good luck.;)

    Happy Camping…[put&hy]
     
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  6. MEGEDH

    MEGEDH New Member Gold Supporting Member

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    A BAL Leveler makes it so much easier to level the trailer than using blocks in my opinion. https://www.campingworld.com/bal-leveler---light-trailer-21017.html
     
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  7. DiamondGirl

    DiamondGirl Adventures with KODI in AZ

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    If you’re looking for a leveler then an Andersen curved leveler works very well with a Aframe. That’s what we used on the Aliner and now on KODI. They’re very easy to use. Andersen levelers can be used for Aframes, PopUp’s, Hybrid trailers and regular travel trailers. We like the fact that we didn’t have to buy another leveler when we went to the Darkside this year. BAL levelers are good too but they can only be used for some PopUp’s and Aframes. Not for heavy high wall PopUp’s, Hybrid trailers or Travel Trailers. BAL levelers have a weight limit. Camco has their version of a curved leveler for around $25 dollars on Amazon which is cheaper than my Andersen. A new Andersen costs $40. I got my Andersen on Craigslist years ago for $20.

    https://www.amazon.com/s?k=camco+cu...R&sprefix=camco+cur&ref=nb_sb_ss_ts-doa-p_2_9

    https://andersenhitches.com/products/camper-leveler

    Happy Camping…[put&hy]
     
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  8. Dnodoz

    Dnodoz Member

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    We had all sorts of blocks and drive on levelers over the years but now use the Bal Leveler.
    Park, slide it under low side tire, drill or ratchet until side to side is level then crank jack until front to back is level.

    we carry ours in a pizza case and always slide a piece of pvc pipe over the greasy threads except when ratcheting up or down.

    Easy and very secure when done.
     
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  9. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

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    For a single axle trailer the bal leveler is the cats butt, super easy to use.. For multi axle trailers Lynx Levelers are great (the best in my opinion) not only can you use them to level the trailer, but you can use them under the tongue jack, stabs, build extra steps when needed, level a table or chair.. so versatile..
     
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  10. Sjm9911

    Sjm9911 Well-Known Member

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    Pleanty of easy ways to do it. Just take your time. Step chocks work also. I mad theose when i had the pup. Now have the curved type ones. Its easy when you get used to it.
     
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  11. Ed Llorca

    Ed Llorca Member

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    Absolutely you can. I am looking at doing exactly that myself. The good news is that you only need two leveling jacks placed as close to the axle as possible or on the axle itself. Level the pup with 1 jack then drop your stabilizers as usual. Cheaper and lighter than buying four. I will do it as soon as I find an affordable one.
     
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  12. BikeNFish

    BikeNFish Well-Known Member

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    Just because you can, doesn't mean you should.
     
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  13. Econ

    Econ Well-Known Member

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  14. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member Platinum Supporting Member

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    As others have said, that would risk twisting your frame.
    Full disclosure: we have used Lynx leveling blocks since our first, tiny popup. It was too small to use the BAL leveler, and the Anderson hadn't come out yet, at least that I ever saw. So, we gt very familiar with the blocks, and didn't bother to switch when we bought our second popup. I've seen the BAL leveler in action, and it would not be something my bad back would cope with using. The Anderson and its ilk sort of scare me, and seem like more work than the blocks.
    With practice, there is no driving on and off the blocks, as Econ says, it isn't difficult once you've had some practice. We use a small t-level at a specified spot on the a-frame, near the jack handle, which, for each camper, has been compared with inside level with a longer level. (We also confirm each new t-level,t urns out they aren't all accurate). We know how many blocks to use by the looks of the bubble, it's correct well over 90% of the time the first time. There is a sneaky dip or rise in a campsite every now and again. We use the tow vehicle to to drive onto the Lynx levelers, snugging the tire against the Lynx chock most of the time. (Depends on how many blocks we're using.) We use the BAL chock on the other wheel.
    Some install levels on the side of the camper, but in our climate, we've seen so many dried up and broken remains of them that we stick with an easy to replace t-level.
     
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  15. theseus

    theseus Living the Darkside... Silver Supporting Member

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    I second what @DiamondGirl says about curved levelers. I have the Camco knock offs of the Andersen version. They are fabulous and easy. Personally i think they would take less time to do than a BAL or even a leveling jack system. It is literally just pull forward until you are level and chock.

    The only downfall is that if you need more than 4 inches of lift, you have to break out the lynx levelers. I use the lynx levelers for my tongue jack and stabilizers mostly, but have had to make a nice tall lift out of them for a site that was horribly unlevel.
     
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  16. Sjm9911

    Sjm9911 Well-Known Member

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    Driving up on an bock or up a curved leveler sounds so much easier then putting down blocks anyway and cranking a leveler. But do what makes you happy.
     
  17. Ed Llorca

    Ed Llorca Member

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    Please explain why one shouldn't.
     
  18. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member Platinum Supporting Member

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    I think BikeNFish's point is that it is possible to do it, but not recommended for the reasons others have stated, such as the fact this type of camper is not meant to be leveled that way and you can twist the frame.
     
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  19. Ed Llorca

    Ed Llorca Member

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    The frame is designed and supported by the axle and suspension attach points. Lifting it there is the same effect as level blocks. There is no engineering reason to not do that.
     
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  20. BikeNFish

    BikeNFish Well-Known Member

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    As kitphantom states, it is not recommended for campers to be leveled from the corners. Doing so will twist the frame. When you twist the frame, everything above the frame will also twists, including the walls that are not meant to twist.

    Kind of like what used to happen to cell phones before they reinforced them. If you sat on it and only one corner bent, the entire phone shattered. I'm not saying the camper will shatter, but it will create stress where it is not meant to be. Eventually, something will have to give...or snap, or crack, or bend, or break.
     
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