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Unacceptable caravan sway forces towbar change on GoSeeAustralia Ford Ranger

July 01, 2016
Unacceptable caravan sway forces towbar change on GoSeeAustralia Ford Ranger

GoSee Australia has found that fitting a Hayman Reese shank to a Ford towbar can produce unacceptable sway in the caravan being towed.

In the initial set-up of our new GSA Ford Ranger XLT Super, P/U HR 3.2 diesel to tow our 21ft Blue Sky travelling office caravan GSA used a Classic Series Heavy Duty 78003F Hayman Reese part package option.

This is rated 800lb/365kg, with a ball weight of 275 to 365kg. It is a cast shank with a welded Weight Distribution Head. The Classic WDH has 30in trunnion spring bars with cams and snap up brackets.

The same 78003F Weight Distribution Hitch package has been used successfully by GSA mated to a Jeep provided Heavy Duty towbar on our Grand Cherokee GSA1 diesel to tow the same 21ft Blue Sky caravan.

But when GSA pushed the Hayman Reese cast shank into the Ford Heavy Duty towbar receiver which came fitted to the new Ranger 4x2 GSA noted more than usual movement.

Despite a series of trials and adjustment attempts the Hayman Reese 78003F cast shank and the Ford towbar receiver are an unhappy sloppy fit. At normal towing speeds the result is unacceptable sway, as the shank neck moves in the towbar receiver. This can be unnerving.

We were advised by an industry source that the solution is to replace the Ford fitting with a genuine Hayman Reese Heavy Duty towbar.

This has been done and the result is steady as she goes towing.

Adjustments with the Ranger included an area GSA explored when hooking a Grand Cherokee to a Jayco 21ft Stirling.

This required customized mountings and fitting points to accommodate a break-away braking mounting point and to provide enough room between the towhead and the drawbar to comfortably plug in the electrics.

With the Ranger snag GSA removed the 12 pin electric plug cover.

The plug cover does not fit when a shackle is used to anchor the caravan’s safety chain.

With the cover gone the shackle pin can be threaded home working from inside the hitch.

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