Scissor Jacks

Discussion in 'Stabilizing Your Camper' started by Dave Brick, Nov 5, 2014.

  1. Dave Brick

    Dave Brick El Cheapo Family Camper

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    So, I read the initial caution, regarding first leveling the trailer, and then putting down the stabilizers.

    My old PUP had 2 swing-down stabilizers in the back. I used to use a bottle jack and jack stands for leveling.

    My NTU PUP had 4 scissor jack stabilizers, one in each corner, and I have used them for leveling. Why is this wrong? I have made up pretty big height differences, and have had no trouble. Why am I doing it wrong?

    I'm sure this has been covered here before, so please accept my apologies for my ignorance.

    DB
     
  2. speckhunter80

    speckhunter80 Well-Known Member

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    The frame is not designed to have those kinds of forces on it. You should level with blocks under your low tire and then the scissor jacks are lowered after you have leveled from front to back with the tongue jack. Most manufacturers also now recommend that you lower the stabilizers after raising the roof.
     
  3. davido

    davido Active Member

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    A 1500 pound test rope is probably not going to snap until you reach 2500 pounds if it's in good condition and you don't shock it by dropping a heavy weight while it's loaded. But if it's not in excellent condition, and not treated well, all bets are off.

    Your stabilizing jacks are for stabilizing, not for load bearing. They have a design capacity that isn't adequate for lifting half the trailer off the ground. Their design capacity is adequate for keeping the thing from tipping backward while you move about the cabin or lay in the aft bed.

    Furthermore, the trailer's frame is probably not strong enough to be suspended from the corners. The frame will flex, and the trailer's box will be weakened by this.

    The failure may not be today, tomorrow... it may never come. But for the lack of a couple chocks and some 2x6's why risk the trailer?

    For want of a nail, the shoe was lost. For want of a shoe, the horse was lost. For want of a horse, the rider was lost. For want of a rider, the battle was lost. For want of a battle, the kingdom was lost. ...and all for the lack of a horseshoe nail. ;)
     
  4. JungleJim

    JungleJim New Member

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    You said it...they are stabilizers, not levelers.
     
  5. jnc

    jnc Welcome from New Hampshire

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    I was wondering how much pressure or weight do you put on the stabilizers?
     
  6. speckhunter80

    speckhunter80 Well-Known Member

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    Until snug on the ground
     
  7. adrianpglover

    adrianpglover Active Member

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    I haven't done it many times, but I've been doing just shy of 1/3 turn after it makes contact with the hard pavement. Haven't put the pup on anything soft yet.
     
  8. Dave Brick

    Dave Brick El Cheapo Family Camper

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    Thank you, that was helpful.

    DB
     
  9. RhinoDave

    RhinoDave Active Member

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    Some people tend to overtighten the stabilizers to stop the trailer from moving around or jiggling a little after setup. You really need to make sure the trailer is chocked tightly to stop the movement. If you just place the chocks loosely in front and back of the tires and don't force them in tight, the trailer will shift around a little, even with the stabilizers down. It's one reason people like the BAL levelers and chocks so much, they really lock in the tire and prevent any movement. I usually use a rubber mallet to drive the chocks in tight and use them front and back of both sides of the trailer.
     
  10. bropaul

    bropaul New Member

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    X2 Paul
     
  11. gruss

    gruss Active Member

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    X3, well, except I use a dead blow instead of a rubber mallet.
     
  12. efehser

    efehser New Member

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    X4, with the deadblow.
     
  13. 3hooligans

    3hooligans Member

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    I use a mallet to get them in tight and cinch them in tight with a ratcheting strap. No movement at all.


    Me the missus and three hooligans!
    2014 Rockwood Premier 2317g
    2012 Ford F150 super crew ecoboost
    2011 Honda Pilot
     
  14. Customer

    Customer Well-Known Member

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    The trailer frame is designed to support the weight on the suspension. When you remove the weight from the suspension and relocate it to the corners you can bend the frame.

    At the worst you will taco the frame, at the least you will distort the frame causing cabinets to pull loose and doors not to function correctly.
     
  15. Dave Brick

    Dave Brick El Cheapo Family Camper

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    Thank you. That is really the best answer I received here. I appreciate everyone giving me feedback.
     
  16. ghri49

    ghri49 Member

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    X5 with the mallet and just ordered a BAL Leveler for the new camper a few days ago.
     
  17. mpotapa

    mpotapa Member

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    Yeah, I bought a BAL leveler and like it a lot, I also just bought the BAL wheel chocks. I haven't used them at a campsite yet but feel it's really going to help the camper from moving.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
     
  18. adrianpglover

    adrianpglover Active Member

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    I love the BAL leveler. Had to spread mine to fit my tires, but once greased it works great. Still using plastic wheel chocks, but now using the rubber mallet since reading other responses on this thread.
     

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