Reese Weight Distribution System with Shank Review

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Review of the Reese Weight Distribution System with Shank

Today we're going to be taking a look at the Reese Weight Distribution System with Shank. Rated at fifteen thousand pounds. Part number RP66541. Weight distribution helps to create a stable ride for your tow vehicle and trailer. Adding spring bars to your towing system applies leverage, which transfers the load that is pushing down on the rear of your vehicle to all the axles on both your tow vehicle and your trailer, resulting in an even distribution of weight throughout. The result is a smooth level ride as well as the ability to tow the maximum capacity of your hitch. As you can see while we're out on the highway and wind builds up, and vehicles pass, we're not seeing any addition sway.

We've got our camper hooked up to a regular ball mount and as you can see, the rear of my truck is squatting and the front is tilted upward. This is a typical problem you're going to have when not using a weight distribution. We're dealing with a lot of tongue weight here and even though our truck can handle it, we're still going to have problems with handling, steering, and breaking. Let's go ahead and take some measurements now, that way we have something to compare it to when we hook up our weight distribution. Here in the back we've got about thirty-seven and five-eighths, and here on the front we've got about thirty-seven and seven-eighths to the underside of the wheel well. I've gone ahead and disconnected the truck.

Let's go ahead and take the same measurements that we did before. Those are the measurements that we want to get back to when we hook up our weight distribution. Here at the rear, we're looking at about thirty-nine and a quarter inches to the underside of the wheel well, and here at the front we're looking at about thirty-eight and three quarters under the wheel well. As you can see, I've gone ahead and engaged my weight distribution system, let's see how it measures up. With our weight distribution our measurement here at the rear is about thirty-eight and a half underneath the wheel well, and here at the front, we've got about thirty-eight and three-eighths underneath the wheel well. These two measurements work out great because in the rear, we want to be within two inches from stock and in the front we want to be no more than one inch above stock.

Please keep in mind, these measurements should be taken only when your trailer is fully loaded and ready to go. With our weight distribution connected and our ride height back to stock as close as we can get it, it's going to give us better traction, steering, breaking, and handling than if we we're to use a standard ball mount. Here at the front we're going to have better steering, handling, breaking, and traction because the front of our truck is no longer tilted upward. Here in the back without all that extra squat, we're going to save our tire wear. Let's take a closer look at the weight distribution itself. The trunnion spring bars are built to flex over uneven terrain for a smooth controlled ride.

Their hot inaudible 00:02:32 construction allows for superior strength and flexibility. The chain allows you to fine tune the tension in your trunnion bar based on your load. The snap up brackets, with the included tool, allow us to easily engage and disengage our spring trunnion bar. As you can see, when we engage our weight distribution system, it takes the weight off the rear axle, and distributes it between all the axles. The snap up brackets connect to our trailer's A Frame in a no drill application. There's a hole provided in the snap up bracket for a more permanent installation, or for use with a higher load application. With our system disengaged, we can get a better look at the head assembly. It has easy in and out connections for our trunnion bars, the raised platform eliminates the need for a raised hitch ball. You will have to provide your own ball, it accepts an inch and a quarter shank, or if you have an inch shank, you can use the included bushing. The head assembly has fifteen degrees of adjustability with the included hardware. This allows for proper spring bar adjustment. For example, the heavier the tongue weight of the trailer, the more tilt we need to distribute that weight. The kit includes a weight distribution shank with a fifteen thousand pound trailer weight and an eight hundred pound gross tongue weight. It has a six and a half inch rise, and an inch and a quarter drop. This will work for most applications. However, in some circumstances, you may require a longer drop, as you see here. All of the components are made out of a solid steel and are powder coated to resist rust and corrosion, now that we've got all the features, I'll go ahead and show you how to get it setup. First thing we need to do is make sure our truck and trailer are in line, straight ahead with one another. We need to make sure our trailer, or in this case our camper, is level. The way we're going to do that is we're going to measure the rear and the front, and hope we get the same number. We've got about nineteen here. Looks like we've got it. The next thing we need to do is measure the distance from the ground to the top of our coupler. We need to record that measurement, and that's going to help us find our ball height. We're about eighteen inches. Let's go ahead and grab our shank and put it into the receiver. As previously mentioned, we're using a different shank than the one that came with the kit because we need a lower drop. We're going to slide it in to line up our pinholes. We'll grab our included pin and clip, and then we've got it. We've already got the head loosely installed in the vertical position and the way we determine it's proper location is, we need to make sure that the ball is great than three quarters to an inch taller than the coupler height. This is to compensate for vehicle squat. Let's grab one of our trunnion bars and we're going to insert the bottom socket in first, and rotate it in place. We're going to rotate it around to point towards our trailer. At this point we need to determine what kind of coupler we have. We have a top knot coupler with a five inch frame. We need to take that information and reference it to the diagram in our instructions. From before we know that the distance to the top of our coupler from the ground is eighteen inches, so we need to put that in our diagram and that's going to give us the proper distance from the ground to our spring bar. With our spring bar, at the proper height, we can lock in the tilt angle of our head. Let's go ahead and snug down our bolts just enough to hold it's shape. We're almost ready to hook up, at this point in time we need to take some measurements. As you recall from earlier, we're going to use those measurements. Let's lower our coupler onto the ball. With our coupler locked and engaged, let's go ahead and raise our jack back up, and this is going to make it easier to engage our weight distribution in our spring bars because it's taking the load off the rear of the vehicle. Let's go ahead and put our trunnion bar back in place. Let's grab our snap up bracket, and we're going to want to place this in a position so that when our chain is hooked up, it's in a vertical position like this. You may have to move your propane tanks, or even your battery box to get this in a proper location. Looks like right here we're pretty good, we're going to go ahead and tighten that down. What that's going to do is just going to squeeze the snap bracket around the frame and help hold it in place. We're not going to tighten this up all the way. We'll tighten it up until it makes contact with the frame and give it another good quarter inch turn and that's all. We've just about got it there, give it one good turn, and we've got it. We just repeat that same process for the other side. We've already got our chains installed on our spring bar, we'll need to make sure that our snap up bracket is parallel with the ground as you see here, and we're going to try and put as many links on this hook here, as we can. It looks like we're going to get about six. We'll just hook it on. If you find that it's less than five links, you'll need to readjust your ball head rearward. Once we've got that, grab our included tool. It's going to help us raise it up in place. If you find that it's too difficult to raise it up in place, then you can raise your trailer jack some more. It'll help relieve some of the weight. Once it's in position, we'll grab our safety pin and then we've got it. We can just repeat that same process on the other side and we've got it. We can lower the jack and remeasure our wheel wells. As we showed you before, our wheel well measurements are well within range. The only thing left to do is to torque it down to manufacturer specifications and we're good to go. That's going to complete our look at the Reese Weight Distribution System, part number RP66541.

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Video Edited:
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Installed by:
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