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Compatibility of Weight Distribution with a C-Channel Frame on Pop-Up Camper  


My popup camper has a 4 inch tubular main frame but a c-channel on the tongue portion of the frame. Can I use a light-duty weight distribution hitch on the camper? I have read it is not recommended to use a WDH on a c-channel frame but wasnt sure if this is true for the light-duty weight distribution hitches like the Reese 66557 or 66558. My camper manual makes no reference to WDHs. Thanks.


Expert Reply:

In general, if C-channel frame members face inward - meaning that the two open parts of the Cs face each other - then bolt-on chain hangers like # RP58305 can allow installation of a WD system. Standard clamp-on hangers like those in Reese system # 66557 will not work since they need a front and rear surface to clamp onto. Clamps like this could potentially damage the c-channel.

It is sometimes necessary in order to use a WD system on a c-channel frame to have some new material welded to the trailer frame for reinforcement. This is a question best answered by the trailer manufacturer. If you know the maker of your camper and can find its model and/or VIN you can contact the manufacturer for their take on this.

When it comes to use of a weight distribution hitch (WDH) on a pop-up or other trailer the manufacturer of the trailer should be consulted. In addition to the type of frame on the trailer its actual material can mean the difference between being able to use a WD system or not. Aluminum trailers are often not considered suitable due to the risk of deformation; this can occur because all WD systems are made of far stronger steel that could over time distort an aluminum trailer frame.

expert reply by:
Adam R

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