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Old 10-23-2014, 02:30 PM   #1
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State: Ohio
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Angry So disappointed Chateau 22E

Just returned from a week long 1k mile trip with Chateau 22e. I knew we had a sway or tail wag problem prior to trip so I upgraded the steering stab, sway bar and installed a tiger trak. Which were a great improvement while towing our toad. But it is like handling a wild bull while on the interstate, you get blown by trucks, steering isn't stable, lots of steering wheel side to side movement and very difficult to stay in your own lane. All I can see at this point is an expensive mistake and what do I do next!
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Old 10-23-2014, 04:12 PM   #2
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Alignment? (Should have had it checked before installing stabilizer.) Tire pressure?
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Old 10-23-2014, 06:11 PM   #3
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The list goes on and on as to what was done prior to trip. Back to dealer once, alignment good, 3 different tire pressures and settled on 65, 4 corner weigh in, 4 inch drop hitch, this was all prior to parts buying. After each change there was a road test with toad, last item replaced was sway bar which showed the most improvement.
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Old 10-23-2014, 06:42 PM   #4
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Which chassis do you have, Ford or Chevy?
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Old 10-23-2014, 11:00 PM   #5
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Ford E-350 SD DRW 158" Chassis w/6.8L V10
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Old 10-23-2014, 11:33 PM   #6
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How fast were you crusing on the Interstate and was there a crosswind? I could see 70 mph and a 15 mph crosswind causing all sorts of problems....
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Old 10-23-2014, 11:44 PM   #7
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What are you towing? Are all the weights within the limits?
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Old 10-24-2014, 12:24 AM   #8
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Towing a GMC terrain at 3800 lbs and rv is rated at 5k. All well within spec.
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Old 10-24-2014, 12:48 AM   #9
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Light wind at about 55-60 mph
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Old 10-24-2014, 12:48 AM   #10
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Do not take that unit to a RV dealer for the alignment. Find a truck place or a Ford Dealer that sell a lot of 450's and 550's those foks at thrv dealers are nice folks but are not up on how to align a heavey duty truck. Also the RV deal is not a place to purchase tires
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Old 10-24-2014, 01:29 AM   #11
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Your right. I went to a truck tire garage here in town. Its the only place around that can do an rv.
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Old 10-24-2014, 03:04 AM   #12
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How does it drive without the towed vehicle?

I have noticed even with my rig, that going around corners I can feel the towed vehicle a bit.

I am still thinking your issue is primarily due to the short wheelbase of your RV, coupled with the high profile/short wheelbase of your towed vehicle, especially since you are (or were) having "tail wag" issues with the towed vehicle.

About the only other thing I can think of is weight bias (front vs. rear weight). If there is too much weight in the rear, the vehicle can feel like driving on ice.

Of course, there is no easy fix to this, and it might end up costing even more money fix. The only way I know of to do this is to modify the rear springs (air bags, helper springs, spring stiffeners, etc), which could move the center-of-gravity forward.

The ability for these items to move the center-of-gravity is limited, so don't expect miracles (hopefully though, the cumulative changes will improve the result). And you could make it worse too.

First though, weigh the front of the rig vs. the rear to find out if you have this problem to begin with.

Next, depending on where things are located, either travel with the water tank empty (if in the rear) or perhaps full (if in the front), try shifting cargo, and so on.
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Old 10-24-2014, 02:00 PM   #13
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I agree with the weight issue. The most rear tank is the fuel tank, clear at the rear of the chasse. It drives much better full then half or empty. The water tank is the most forward and I've never traveled with it full, just empty. Black & gray are left of fuel, but are usually empty. When cornering it seems that the toad is pushing the mh around and outward. You really haft to hang onto it in cornering.
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Old 10-24-2014, 03:43 PM   #14
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Normally adding weight to the rear should make the front less responsive to steering, but as you say a full gas tank improves handling, it might be that just adding weight is helping your situation.

Try filling the water tank and see if that helps. I know the conventional wisdom is to travel light with empty tanks, but with your rig, you should have a lot of safety margin in your GVWR, and it might help balance the load.

Since your water tank is just about as large as your fuel tank, it might help if you fill it... depending of course where it is located on your chassis.

I know what that feels like when cornering. I used to tow a boat that weighed more than the pickup. When I went around corners I had to really slow down as the boat would want to push the rear of the truck forward.

It's just a matter of vehicle weight vs. trailer weight.
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Old 11-05-2014, 02:12 PM   #15
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One more step in this TOAD sway. how much effect will the alignment of the toad have on the towing? Had four wheel alignment done yesterday and found rear wheels out of tolerence. I wish I knew how to read their spec sheet.
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Old 11-05-2014, 05:32 PM   #16
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I would think it would make a difference after all those wheels were fighting going down the road straight
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Old 11-06-2014, 03:09 AM   #17
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Again, I am thinking your rig is going to be more sensitive than most due to the shorter wheelbase of your RV, coupled with the SUV characteristics of your toad.

So I think anything like this you find will help.

Am interested to see if it helps.
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Old 11-07-2014, 02:05 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dgantz View Post
Towing a GMC terrain at 3800 lbs and rv is rated at 5k. All well within spec.

How does it drive without the towed vehicle?
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Old 11-07-2014, 02:26 AM   #19
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Dgantz,
I think you've gotten a lot of good suggestions regarding alignment of both vehicles, weight distribution due to filled water and gas tanks, size (length and height and weight of towed), level of tow bar, speed, cross winds, etc. But how about tires? I'm not sure what you are running but I know they can make a difference. I don't know if you want to go with stiffer or softer sidewalls, but that is one factor along with profile and tread pattern. It is an expensive proposition, but I'll be that there are people on this forum who have experiences to share. Of course you may also need to reduce the size of your towed vehicle, if it exceeds the recommended weight.
Finally, I think the "big boat vs. small boat" (long length versus short length) theory is interesting and may be true. However something with a big surface area and relatively light weight will blow around more than something with a small surface area and high weight. Wind profile is important. My apologies to any boaters if the laws of the seas say this ain't so!
John
Athens, GA
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