Author Topic: VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low  (Read 1469 times)

spadedace

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« on: December 12, 2016, 07:52:04 PM »
Hi All,

New member and finding this site to be a blessing.  Love all the input from other LL owners.  

I have a new Livin' Lite VRV 6x15 toy hauler that I bought in March.  I've used it a few times but using a friends WD hitch.  I just purchased my own, same kind as his, an "Equilizer" hitch.  http://www.equalizerhitch.com.  I'm in the process of getting it setup for my vehicle and now that I'm digging into the measurements needed to level it, I'm finding a lot of concerning issues with the way this trailer was produced and wondering if 1.) I got an "oddball" or if this trailer was purposely made this way, and, 2.) now what to do about it?

I pull it with a Nissan Pathfinder LE.  I pull boats, dirt bike trailers, utility trailers etc without issue with this vehicle which has 270hp, V6 and a max tow of 5500lbs.  For the VRV6x15 at max of 3500lbs, it's plenty and pulls nicely at 70mph on the interstate and gets 12+mpg unless in the mountains.  I live in central Florida (Tampa) so it's mainly flat around here anyway.  That's the vehicle and WD/AS hitch.  

The main issue #1 is that this trailer when completely level is REALLY low to the ground.  They sell is as made for towing with cars (ultralight) but from the coupler height, it seems like that's it!  When completely level and empty the coupler height (ground to top of where ball would sit inside the coupler) is 16.5 inches.  My hitch receiver sits at 22inches from the ground.  I'm finding I now need to order an extended length shank just to get the ball low enough to keep the trailer level when connected without any WD hitch bars connected.  This height means I've got VERY little clearance under the camper for waste lines, the front leveling arms are only about 6 inches off the ground and it just doesn't seem right.  I took some pictures today when I was doing my measurements and had the trailer on flat ground and used a speed level on 3-4 spots of the camper and trailer frame to assure it was level.  

Am I crazy thinking this is extremely low to the ground?  I haven't ordered the extended shank which is 14' long and will probably only sit about 5 inches off the ground which is not much at all.  It's also about $150 for the shank.  I've also included pics with the normal supplied shank so you can see what that setup looks like.  

Anyone know if this little amount of clearance is worrying?  Should I bother with the extended shank which will make it ride a little high but gives a little more clearance at the front of the trailer where the valving/pipes are as well as the leveling legs.  Not sure what to do here but trying to use this trailer when level seems dangerous as one of those big rounded speed "humps" might take out my leveling legs and/or black water piping.  

Thanks in advance!
Scott 




[img style="" style="max-width:100%;" src="http://i79.photobucket.com/albums/j152/spadedace/PublicAlbum/IMG_7781_zpsublu1qn7.jpg"]






davidb

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2016, 08:41:32 PM »
That tongue looks extremely lower than my 6x15, I was concerned about knocking off my plumbing discharge manifold and installed a lift kit from Perfect Casitas that gave me an additional 3".

The Dexter axles come with different angles and they may have got a batch with a different angle, I contacted Dexter axle and gave them the serial number of the axles and they e-mailed me a build sheet for my axles that lists all data about them for future reference, my arm angle is 00NT.


http://livinlite-owners.com/post/295/thread


david

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2016, 08:45:25 PM »
Yes, that looks awfully low. Dexter, the manufacturer of the axles, makes a lift kit that adds 3-4" to the trailer height. I would sure look at adding that kit. Others have added them and their was a recent thread on it. Here is a link to that thread- https://livinlite.forums.net/thread/2507/dexter-axle-lift

The other thing, is that you are pushing it. The GVWR of the 6x15 is 5546 lbs and the dry weight is 3118 lbs (without options). Toy haulers need the large difference in the two to handle the weight of your toys. So depending on how you load it, you may be pushing the maximum tow rating of your TV.

One last thing- the dry hitch weight is 546 lbs. That is a lot, but it should drop with the addition of toys in the back. But with an expected loaded trailer weight of 5000 lbs, you will need to watch your load distribution to keep the tongue weight at 10%.

David
David M

16TBS towed with a 2013 Nissan Pathfinder

spadedace

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2016, 08:56:18 PM »
Thanks, guys.  I'm afraid a lift kit is definitely in my future.  Why on earth would LL even produce a product in current configuration?  Just seems backwards to me that for the price these toys fetch that you'd then have to immediately spend more money to have it lifted so that it can be safely towed, even around the block as most neighborhood have those silly speed humps, not to mention taking it out into the wild west of campgrounds and offroad race properties etc.  

David (not B). I couldn't put anything close to 1800 lbs in my hauler, most I think I've loaded was about 350 which is dirt bike and Honda EU3000 generator plus a cooler and gas.  Thanks for the tip on tongue weight and loading etc.  Any nifty tools/products out there for guestimating tongue weight?  The Weight Distribution hitch should help in that respect in that it disperses the load across more of trailer and vehicle, no?  

Thx.

jerrybeaird

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2016, 09:16:16 PM »
Hi Scott,  I bought one of these to measure my tongue weight.  I have the 1,000 lb gauge on mine.  They work great.  I hope this helps.


https://www.sherlinedirect.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=product.display&Product_ID=169

billmoore

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #5 on: December 12, 2016, 09:34:11 PM »
What size wheels/tires are on it? The fender wells have an awful lot of empty space in them compared to our BC7X20. Wondering if it had the wrong size installed at the factory...

spadedace

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2016, 09:48:22 PM »
Quote from: @billmoore" source="/post/26387/thread" timestamp="1481592851
What size wheels/tires are on it? The fender wells have an awful lot of empty space in them compared to our BC7X20. Wondering if it had the wrong size installed at the factory...



They are 15 inch tires on aluminum rims.  Just verified as once you said that it scared me, lol.

Thx.

billmoore

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #7 on: December 12, 2016, 10:09:02 PM »
Cool, I was worried they put the Camplite 14" rims on it.

I'll see if I can find a picture for comparison later tonight, but on our BC7x20 (which basically is just a VRV 7x20 with the off-road package and different decals and color scheme) the trailer frame is  pretty much level with the receiver. Our F150 is 4wd, so the receiver probably is pretty close to the same height as yours.

The off-road package lifts the trailer 2", but I wouldn't think you would need more than 2-3 inches of drop in the draw bar.

billmoore

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2016, 11:27:00 PM »
This is the only picture I have of ours hitched up:



It is a little hard to make out, but you can see that the bottom of the trailer coupler is actually slightly higher than the bottom of the draw bar coming out of the receiver. Trailer is perfectly level when hitched up on level ground with the WD bars in place.

That picture is with full water and propane tanks, and two motorcycles loaded up (Suzuki DR650SE and Kawasaki KLX250S).

franks97224

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #9 on: December 13, 2016, 12:43:30 AM »
I have a 2013 VRV 8518 and if I remember correctly my coupler height as you measured it is just over 17 inches. I wanted a low profile trailer as I tow a small race car (Austin Healy Sprite) in mine. I needed the angle of the load ramp to be as flat as possible. I have a drop hitch with weight distributing on my GMC Sierra 1500. I have used the trailer for four years now with no problems.

http://livinlite-owners.com/attachment/download/1219



spadedace

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #10 on: December 13, 2016, 12:45:44 PM »
Quote from: @franks97224" source="/post/26396/thread" timestamp="1481604210
I have a 2013 VRV 8518 and if I remember correctly my coupler height as you measured it is just over 17 inches. I wanted a low profile trailer as I tow a small race car (Austin Healy Sprite) in mine. I needed the angle of the load ramp to be as flat as possible. I have a drop hitch with weight distributing on my GMC Sierra 1500. I have used the trailer for four years now with no problems.

http://livinlite-owners.com/attachment/download/1219


Very cool little car!  Dig that Pearl sticker!

Thanks for the insight.  I pull dirtbikes in mine to off-road races and getting onto some of the properties is sketchy at best with old peanut fields that are like driving over 1000 yards of speed bumps from plows, or roots and rocks and old jeep trails for a mile etc.  If I don't drag the drawbar, the plumbing is gonna be ripped off along with whatever else under there.  Pretty sure at this point that a lift for me is the only thing that will give more clearance and make towing safe.  So odd that a normal height tow vehicle is too high for this trailer to remain level.  

david

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VRV 6x15 Coupler/Hitch Too Low
« Reply #11 on: December 13, 2016, 01:51:50 PM »
Another thought, but a long shot. Your trailer has Dexter torsion arm axles. Is it possible that Dexter assembled these wrong and got the torsion arm off a spline or so and that is why your trailer sits so low? I would do some further investigation with your dealer and LL before I installed the lift kit. That trailer came from the factory too low.

I have the same TV as yours and with a short drop hitch of 1-2" about half of what yours shows in the first pic, my 16TBS rides perfectly level.

David
David M

16TBS towed with a 2013 Nissan Pathfinder