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Old 10-19-2019, 08:51 AM   #21
Baldicon
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Originally Posted by Hhaywoodjr View Post
I called Reese yesterday and explained my situation. They said if the king pin pulled out of the hitch it would cause major damage to the hitch and my trailer. I had neither. I took the truck and hitch to a local hitch doctor and he could find no problem with the hitch. He's believes it was high hitched. I did the pull test after hooking up in Tennessee. I don't understand how I could drive over 500 miles high hitched and only have a problem on my property. That could have ended very badly!!! Are there any illustrations out there of a high hitch situation? Very puzzling to me!!!
When you did the pull test, was it against a set of chocks? The way the brakes (drum) operate was explained at the Rally (or at least the way I understood) was that at a standstill they apply very little braking pressure to the shoes. It takes the rotation of the wheel to apply full braking pressure on the shoes. But, I may have misunderstood, I do a lot of that. I do my pull test against chocks for what its worth. I would tend to agree with Reese that if the pin pulled through the hitch jaws, you would clearly see damage.
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Old 10-19-2019, 09:23 AM   #22
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head hurts

Don`t know about you but if this situation had happened to me I would not want to jeopardize my family or the driving public around me with maybe`s or advice from people that weren`t there or joe the hitch doctor or some kid on the other end of a phone. Hitches are not that expensive especially Reese, buy a new one and go on about your life in safety. Cause nothing has been proven as to cause up till now and likely won`t. Like you said how could have I high hitched for 500 miles and not have the camper fall off, think about it, with today`s roads, not a chance. Most if not all people that high hitched drop their camper on the bed just pulling out of the camping spot or at the first turn. Buy an Andersen you won`t have to question yourself ever again, it`s either on or off no in-between. Are you going to trust the hitch at this point?
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Old 10-19-2019, 09:24 AM   #23
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I also do my pull test before I ever remove the chocks and with the jacks still down so no danger of a fall.

And looking at my Reese with the wrap around jaw, I don't see any way for the pin to be pulled out without very obvious damage to the jaw. And I would expect to see some damage or scrape marks on the pin itself. And the jaw is geared to the pull handle and would be very unlikely to be able to rotate the jaw due to any force in any direction. And if the locking pin is installed in the pull handle then virtually impossible.

Seems that if there is no damage, then high hitching is the most likely cause.
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Old 10-19-2019, 10:06 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by Hhaywoodjr View Post
I called Reese yesterday and explained my situation. They said if the king pin pulled out of the hitch it would cause major damage to the hitch and my trailer. I had neither. I took the truck and hitch to a local hitch doctor and he could find no problem with the hitch. He's believes it was high hitched. I did the pull test after hooking up in Tennessee. I don't understand how I could drive over 500 miles high hitched and only have a problem on my property. That could have ended very badly!!! Are there any illustrations out there of a high hitch situation? Very puzzling to me!!!
I drove trucks for around 45 years and hooked and unhooked multiple times each day, sometimes as many as 20 or 30 a day. I high hitched once early in my career and drove about 50 miles to my destination where I discovered it.
If you look at your hitch you will notice that the jaws are a half inch or better below the top plate. Even on a RV trailer you will have 2,3 or more thousand pounds of pin weight. It takes a major bump to cause that much weight to lift the front of your trailer off the hitch. A sharp incline or decline however, will cause your hitch head to rotate fore and aft allowing a high hitched pin to simply slip off. That is why the kingpin has a recessed area where the jaws wrap around it.
As mentioned previously, you always want to see your pinbox rise slightly when you slide your hitch under it. An half inch is plenty. Then ALWAYS DO A VISUAL INSPECTION to make sure the jaws are fully around the pin and the release lever is fully locked in the travel position. Bet you never high hitch again
PS. Saw multiple instances of dropped trailers where the driver blamed it on the hitch, however mechanics always found the hitch to be operating correctly. Truck put back into service with no further issues.
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Old 10-19-2019, 10:49 AM   #25
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As stated above, you should ALWAYS visually look at the pin from the back and insure that the hitch jaws are wrapped around the pin.

Also as mentioned, you should hitch up with the pin box head slightly lower than the hitch head. You want the trailer to make the truck squat a little while backing into the hitch, but not so much that the trailers landing gear is raised off the ground.
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Old 10-19-2019, 11:02 AM   #26
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Just a thought, did you stop anywhere on the trip home? Is there a chance someone might have messed with the hitch while you were away from the rig?
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Old 10-19-2019, 11:42 AM   #27
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My Reese hitch wrap around jaw has three levels on the inner surface of the jaw. At the top the diameter of the jaw is large enough to circle the largest upper part of the pin. The next level is smaller diameter to circle the smaller part of the pin. And the lower part is again larger to circle the larger part of the lower portion of the pin. Thus the jaw matches the contours of the pin and basically traps the pin in the jaw. But that contour does create something of a cup on top of the jaw that the pin could sit down in if high hitched. With 3,000 lbs of weight on that pin sitting in the cup, it could ride for long distances and never come out if there were no extreme bumps or distorted movements. And even a normal pull test would not indicate a problem.


Again that is why I always have the pin box slightly lower than the hitch so that it rides up on the hitch and ensures no high hitching.
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Old 10-19-2019, 03:11 PM   #28
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I think BB-TX has it. That's what I thought from first reading.
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Old 10-20-2019, 10:58 PM   #29
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As stated in post number 26, is there a chance that someone pulled your handle so when you backed up the trailer separated from the hitch. i always lock my handle after hitching. i have read about pranksters pulling the lever.
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Old 10-21-2019, 06:33 AM   #30
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Not likely. I drove 200 miles from my last stop. No one could have tampered with it during that time. . Like I said to post 27. I'm going to be extremely diligent when hooking up from this day forward. I pray this does not happen again. I hope my incident makes everyone reading this a little more observant when hooking up. I it prevents one incident my ordeal would have been worth while!!
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Old 10-21-2019, 09:47 AM   #31
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I think this will make us all a little more cautious.
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Old 10-21-2019, 04:54 PM   #32
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I know I will be looking at the pin to make sure it extends below the jaws.
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Old 10-21-2019, 07:48 PM   #33
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Theunz is 100% correct! Used to be a driver trainer.
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Old 10-23-2019, 02:22 PM   #34
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I'm in the high hitch camp on this one. I've seen a high hitch up, it's not pretty, and I AWLAYS look at the hitch and king pin after hitch up. Some times I forget to put the locking pin in the hitch release handle, but I always check the hitch jaw is wrapped around the kingpin.

Expensive lesson and most body shops report the damage to Carfax which lower the value of the truck. :/
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Old 10-23-2019, 02:35 PM   #35
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I just looked at my B&W hitch to see if it could he "high hitched". Yes - but the latch handle flops with no resistance. While properly hitched it has a pretty heavy pull that becomes nearly impossible with full pin weight on the hitch
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Old 10-23-2019, 03:08 PM   #36
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I would have the insurance replace the hitch as well.
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Old 10-23-2019, 06:03 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by PeteandJoan View Post
The lever that opens the jaws before you hookup has a way to lock that lever after you hookup. If that lever is not locked would that allow the pin to just slip out when a lot of lifting pressure is applied? Probably so, I guess that is why they put a locking device (pin) on that lever. I'm just thinking out loud. I did drop my trailer onto the bedrails once!
Boy do I agree with this one......in fact my truck is right now in the shop getting repaired. $8,838.74 damage to the truck rails. 3725 was not damage. Hitching up on labor day, got out to do my check looked around the back of the hitch and looked fine. Remembered something in the camper, and took care of that. Came out jumped in the truck and bang!!!!! Dropped on the rails. I knew exactly what I did......My story is that my wife is now disabled and she no longer can prepare the inside of our camper. So i do it all and do not mind. I am just happy to have her with me. Well I was mentally overloaded and forgot to check the indicator at the front of the hitch. I have always done this in the past, but forgot this one time and it happened.

I have been towing fifth wheels since 2000 and have logged just over 100,000 miles with campers in tow. My return trip home, and one mental mistake was an expensive one.

Check your hitch both front and back, take your time and for me now use a check list. My pride is hurt but insurance covered it and Amica considered it a comprehensive claim not collision. I was happy about that.

So it does happen and in my opinion it was not hitched correctly and the additional pressure caused the hitch to release. If the hitch shows some kind of damage from the pin being pulled from the hitch it will be easily seen. I doubt you will find anything.

Good luck and I know how you feel.
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Old 10-23-2019, 06:44 PM   #38
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Lots of very good advice here. Everyone sound pay the upmost attention while hitching up and not let anything distract you from doing it correctly.

$8838 worth of bed damage. WOW. I have seen many take off new beds for sale for 2-3k. May be difficult to find the right color though.
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Old 11-03-2019, 11:31 AM   #39
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Kingpin pulled out of hitch

We had our kingpin pull out of the reese hitch. We did a u-turn at a turn around that had a slight slope. The 5th wheel pulled out of the hitch on the highway and the only thing keeping the 5th wheel attached was the tail gate that was completely ruined and had to come off. We would never get another reese hitch. We had more problems with it than I can count. We had a lot of problems with it not connecting properly to the 5th wheel and when we would pull away the 5th wheel would fall on our truck.
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Old 11-03-2019, 04:20 PM   #40
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We had our kingpin pull out of the reese hitch. We did a u-turn at a turn around that had a slight slope. The 5th wheel pulled out of the hitch on the highway and the only thing keeping the 5th wheel attached was the tail gate that was completely ruined and had to come off. We would never get another reese hitch. We had more problems with it than I can count. We had a lot of problems with it not connecting properly to the 5th wheel and when we would pull away the 5th wheel would fall on our truck.
What model Reese hitch did you have? Wrap around jaw or clam shell type?
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