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  Is a tongue weight of 190lbs ok - 20 Outrage?

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Author Topic:   Is a tongue weight of 190lbs ok - 20 Outrage?
ewalsh posted 06-18-2002 11:38 PM ET (US)   Profile for ewalsh   Send Email to ewalsh  
Hi all,

I just moved the axel on my trailer towards the bow of the 1988 20' outrage by 10.5".

This decreased the tongue weight from 350lbs to 190lbs. Assuming the boat package weighs 3,000lbs (w/o trailer weight), am I on track for a proper setup?

Thank you, Ed

Jerry Townsend posted 06-19-2002 12:31 AM ET (US)     Profile for Jerry Townsend  Send Email to Jerry Townsend     
Ed - assuming a trailer weight of 800 lbs (simply a wag) gives a total weight of 3800 lbs so that your 190 lb tongue weight is 5% of the total weight. As such, this is on the light side of the recognized 5 to 10% range. Try it and see if the trailer is stable. ------- Jerry/Idaho
ewalsh posted 06-19-2002 11:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for ewalsh  Send Email to ewalsh     
Jerry, thanks!

I thought, when calculating the tongue weight, you would NOT factor in the weight of the trailer?

Thanks, Ed

Bigshot posted 06-19-2002 12:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
That weight is also factored at like 17" or something from the ground to the tongue. If you run too light of a tongue weight, she will sway on the highway. If she does not sway.....you're ok!
ShrimpBurrito posted 06-19-2002 01:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for ShrimpBurrito  Send Email to ShrimpBurrito     
Why would you not consider the weight of the trailer in calculating tongue weight? As far as the tow vehicle is concerned, it wouldn't care if you had a 3000 lb boat/1000 lb trailer or a 3000 lb trailer/1000 lb boat. What matters is that 4000 lbs is being towed.
ewalsh posted 06-19-2002 03:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for ewalsh  Send Email to ewalsh     
Great info, thanks everyone!
tuna1 posted 06-19-2002 08:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for tuna1  Send Email to tuna1     
Weigh the outfit on a set of scales,then set the tonque weight@10%. Don't seat of the pants it's and end up with the boat in the ROAD.
jameso posted 06-19-2002 11:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for jameso  Send Email to jameso     
'Tongue weight' is a term that relates to the weight of the trailer tongue on the hitch receiver ball,,,this may or may not be an indicator of how your rig will tow. 200 lbs on the hitch of a full size dualie isn't crap, the same weight on a midsized pickup is substansial. You need to look at the entire rig and see how it tows, hook it up, get up to highway speed and do a couple of manuevers,i.e. passing with lane changes ect. Seat of the pants??? 10% is this a tamdem?? It is standard test procedures to start at a certain point and work up to the max. If the rig is unstable at 60 MPH trying to maintain straight and level, it aint right.
If this is the case put more weight on the hitch.
OK, if you have 200 lbs on your hitch now you and have XX" distance between your hitch ball and the receiver and you change vehicles or hitch hardware where the distance is 2XX you have effectively increased the hitch weight by 100%. Weight/Lever math.
I don't think you can go to this or any any other source and get the 'MAGIC' weight for your rig. Too many variables,,,hell this is not even a technical source just opinions as is mine. Free and you got what you paid for.
Jim Armstrong
Tom W Clark posted 06-20-2002 01:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     
ewalsh,

Like Jerry Townsend said, you are at the low end of acceptable tongue weight range and it may be fine. Try it and if it seems less than perfectly stable then make more adjustments so the tongue weight increases to the point where it is perfectly stable.

As a general statement, higher tongue weight will increase the whole rig’s stability. Obviously you do not want to overwhelm the towing vehicle, it has weight limits of its own. Too much tongue weight will be a problem too.

Every tow vehicle and trailer combo will have its own optimal tongue weight but the rule of thumb that tongue weight should be 5% to 10% of gross trailer weight is a good one. 5% and 10% are not magical numbers. Nothing suddenly happens the moment you exceed one or the other.

Try your rig the way it is now and decide for yourself it its right. You'll know.

ewalsh posted 06-20-2002 08:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for ewalsh  Send Email to ewalsh     
Thanks again, everyone.

The tow vehicle is a 01 Suburban with tow package. The max tongue weight on the vehicle is 700lbs.

I really wasn't worried about "damaging" the truck, I just wanted to reduce the weight so as to limit the stress on the truck's suspension and the trailer's "tongue assembly" (the long piece of steel that runs from the hitch to the area where the trailer starts the Y)

I have not yet towed with the boat, but I'll post the results. BTW, the trailer is a single axle,

Thanks, Ed

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