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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just bought a new vehicle and will self install a new (yet to be purchased) class lll trailer hitch and have 2 questions, please....

1. Has anyone used a "J-pin lock" to help reduce / prevent receiver rattle?

http://www.etrailer.com/Hitch-Accessories/Tow-Ready/63201.html

2. Is there any advantage / disadvantage in using a longer than needed receiver? I've been using a 7" length and am thinking of increasing to 12".

Thanks in advance for all replies and suggestions.
 

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1. I use a standard pin. The J pin looks like it would take some time to install and remove the receiver. I take my receiver off and on all the time and the regular pin is fast. I also use gorilla tape (slightly thicker than duct tape) and make one wrap before and after the pin hole around the receiver to take up the slack between the receiver and hitch. I've found this to eliminate about 90% of squeeking.

2. I would think the longer one would cause more of a moment on the hitch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks SeaNic, appreciate your input. I leave my receiver in most all year so I'm not too worried about the extra time required to install / remove the J-pin lock. I'm looking for something other than wedges of wood, duct tape, etc (been there done that) to help quite the rattle. Don't want to increase the TW as everything balances real well. Some type of anti rattle device seems like my only real option but I am open to suggestions.
 

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J-pin is a waste of time and money. There are other things on a boat trailer that rattle and shake more! The farther the ball "pivot point" is from your truck axle the more the front of the vehicle has to swing to make corrections when backing up, and you are also taking weight off of the front axle.
 

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Mike,
To reduce rattle you could eliminate the standard type pin and use a 5/8" grade 8 bolt, nut & lock washer since you do not remove the ball insert. I would also advise greasing the insert to prevent rust from collecting and seizing the insert inside the receiver.
You should not notice any significant difference in handling using an insert that is 5" longer, however, purchase the strongest available with the highest rated ball, just for ease of mind.
 

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Mike, Just came from a friends boat shop, He trailers too many antique boat shows around the country. He solved his hitch rattle problem by brushing on two coats of "BED LINER" paint on the insert, said he gets two years out of the process before a touchup is required. Think I will give it a try on one of my hitch inserts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks guys...very interesting suggestions :thumbup: Darn shame that the mfgs don't have closer tolerances. I just measured two of my 2" ball mounts. One measures 2" wide and 1 3/4" deep, the other one is 1 7/8" wide and 1 3/4" deep....kinda like 2 x 4 lumber if you know what I mean. Both ball mounts were quite loose when inserted into my old 2" hitch receiver opening. I'll make sure to check with etrailer on the two class lll hitches I'm considering to see which is the tightest and which ball mount will fit the best...Hopefully my new set up will not be quite as sloppy as my last one was. Thanks again for your input.

Mike
 

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While you're at it be careful in your selection of the ball hitch. I have run across reports, with pictures, showing that the welds which secure the ball to the hitch are defective.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Flycatcher...maybe I should have been a little clearer but my balls have a 1" dia shank. I know this may sound like a personal problem but I can assure you that this is trailer hitch related :D
 

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Gotcha MWOLFE- since you mentioned it was a new vehicle, I wasn't sure if you were getting a new ball hitch as well. Since other readers may use info found on this forum for their personal situations, I wanted to make sure this base was covered.
Your question about extending the receiver by 5" is very interesting. I've found concerns about longer receivers reducing tongue weight and towed weight capacities due to extra load on the rear suspension and lateral forces on the hitch itself - but I cannot find any information about how long the extension needs to be before these factors become significant. I've found extenders that add 34" to the tongue, and I'm sure that such concerns are significant in such applications. No doubt there's a mathematical approach for precisely calculating individual applications, but I haven't been able to find anything definitive. Until your post, I'd never have given a second thought to a 5" extension. In my bliss (ignorance) I would doubt the added 5 inches would change things that much for the average trailered boat application, but would be interested in learning more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
flycatcher, thanks for the follow up. Just for the record, I'll be towing with a 2016 Santa Fe AWD, V6 - 290HP with a max tow capacity of 5000 lbs. My 16.5' rig weighs in at around 2500 lbs with trailer, all gear and a full tank of gas. The reason I am considering increasing the bar length is to create a little more distance between my trailer and my bumper. With the 7" bar I'd only have about 2" clearance, same as the 2011 Santa Fe I traded in, which had tons of nics & scuffs on the bumper fascia from backing up just a bit to far when hooking up to the trailer. Hopefully, with the rear view camera on the 2016 and 5 extra inches I will eliminate marring my bumper and make it easier to lift the rear hatch to gain entry to the rear storage area. I may have to move my boat a tad forward on the trailer in order to obtain proper TW?? I was at 8% with the 7" bar and everything was good. I'll just have to experiment some.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
Hey Mike,
When you've finally broken in your new Santa Fe I'd like to know what your MPGs are at highway speeds, non towing.
Down the road a piece I may be getting one for my better half if the fuel economy is in the range I want.
Jerry, I took it on a 90 mile road trip (last Tues) the day after I got it. Would you believe 27.2 mpg...I kid you not. I ran between 60 - 80 mph but never mashed it down. I am REALLY happy with this vehicle. Right now I have 260 miles on it. I've owned a 2008, a 2011 & now this 2016. They have all been very good vehicles with no issues whatsoever. If you are thinking of a full size 2016 (not the sport) you better act quick as Hyundai is no longer making any. The 2017's are now on the assembly line and should be available in April at an up-charge (of course). Not sure where you are exactly located but Annapolis Hyundai had 1 on their lot as of last week. My local dealer (Mechanicsburg, PA) got me the one I wanted from a lot somewhere around Phila. Cars.com is a great site for doing a new vehicle search. Good luck...hope your knees are doing better and you are getting ready to C & R a few big fat cows :fishing2:
 

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Hi again. I believe that the tongue weight if a trailer is ideally said to be 10 - 15% ot the total weight of the trailer and its contents. So a loaded trailer with a weight of 3000# should have a tongue weight of 300 - 450#. If your boat is loaded on the trailer properly, then the position of the boat should not be changed. But the hitch does act as a lever on the rear suspension. So a 300# weight just behind the bumper would not put near as much load on the truck as a 300# load stuck on a ball 3 feet behind the trailer (I used a long extension to help paint the picture). A weight distributing hitch can compensate for heavier tongue weights as well. But I really don't think 5 more inches will have any adverse effects in the situation you describe. The new Santa Fe sounds great.
One other thing to check with a new vehicle is whether the rear hatch (door) will clear the trailer and boat when it is raised.
 

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To stop the rattling, I drilled & tapped a 3/8" threaded hole in the side of the receiver about 2" back.
I put a stainless drive bolt with a locking nut to steady the draw bar . It is quiet

Yrs ago I had a drawbar rust from the inside and break off,in my driveway,thank goodness. It looked perfectly normal on the outside.
The new one got packed with grease to avoid the rust.
They do make solid drawbars.I found that out 2 weeks after the new one was in place.
BW
 

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Last summer I replaced my 2003 Honda Odyssey with a 2015 Toyota Sienna. Both minivans had 6-cyl engines, perfect for towing my 16' Scout center console. The hitch position on Toyota sits 1/2" to 1" lower than the Honda. My driveway goes up, is flat across the sidewalk, then drops down the curb to the street. With low ground clearance, the frame of the trailer can scrape as I go over the hump.

I added a hitch on the new Toyota last August. My old draw bar put the ball too close to the bumper and made the frame scrape. I bought a new longer draw bar that changed the angle of the hitch connection just enough so the frame no longer scrapes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thanks again guys...got some really good food for thought. One of the two hitches I'm looking at gives 3/4" more ground clearance and has a 600 lb TW. The other one is 1/2" longer, has 2 pre drilled pin holes and a 500 lb TW. I'm thinkin hitch #1 with a 5" longer solid tow bar is gonna be the ticket. I will deal with any rattle after the install.
 

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Just pack it full of Grease, never heard a squeak. I use three different sizes so I am swapping it out all the time.

Capt. Ted
 
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