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UK Caravanning (uk.rec.caravanning) A forum for the discussion of caravanning undertaken by residents of the United Kingdom, whether in the UK or abroad. It encourages the interchange of views on the merits of models of caravan, makes of tow car, accessories, caravan sites, caravan clubs, and other related topics. The term caravan is to include trailer vans, motor caravans and trailer tents.

Alko stabiliser hitch



 
 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old October 12th 04, 05:10 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Richard Brookman
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 467
Default Alko stabiliser hitch

When we got our van in 2002 we had an Alko stabiliser hitch fitted (maroon
colour with integral lock). We've always had a problem unhitching from the
car, when the hitch refuses to let go of the towball, despite shunting the
car to and fro, playing with van handbrake, pushing and pulling etc. At
its worst, it can lift the back of the Range Rover about 4" and still not
let go. It has happened from our first trip with the van and is a problem
every time we arrive anywhere (or even when I'm moving the thing around at
home). Eventually it will release, but I never know what I have done to make
it let go.

I've always assumed it was my fault (poor technique, first caravan and all),
even though I have had no problems with any other trailer, even my car
transporter, which is probably double the weight of the van when it's fully
loaded. However, I took the van into the supplying dealer for some warranty
work today and (thank goodness) the hitch wouldn't unhitch, so he saw the
problem. He's advised me that he's had lots of similar complaints from
other owners, and that this failure to release is a known problem. Friction
pads won't pull back, or something. A new improved model is now on sale for
about 280. I don't feel inclined to pay this.

Has anyone else heard of this? Is it a "known problem"? He's going to try
to fix it, but if this doesn't work I think I'll just reinstall the original
hitch as supplied with the van. We've had no problems with stability,
whether the stabiliser pads have been engaged or not. Any thoughts?

TIA

--

Rich

Series 2a
RR 4.6
V8 trialler
dog, wife, kids, whatever


Ads
  #2 (permalink)  
Old October 12th 04, 05:51 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Nigel Crompton
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 91
Default Alko stabiliser hitch

On Tue, 12 Oct 2004 17:10:54 +0000 (UTC), "Richard Brookman"
wrote:

When we got our van in 2002 we had an Alko stabiliser hitch fitted (maroon
colour with integral lock). We've always had a problem unhitching from the
car, when the hitch refuses to let go of the towball, despite shunting the


A problem I had. Try unhitching with the overrun compressed. Mine
drops off easily in this position. Mind the car bodywork tho, as once
unhitched the overrun will return to its normal extension....
  #3 (permalink)  
Old October 12th 04, 05:51 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Nigel Crompton
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 91
Default Alko stabiliser hitch

On Tue, 12 Oct 2004 17:10:54 +0000 (UTC), "Richard Brookman"
wrote:

When we got our van in 2002 we had an Alko stabiliser hitch fitted (maroon
colour with integral lock). We've always had a problem unhitching from the
car, when the hitch refuses to let go of the towball, despite shunting the


A problem I had. Try unhitching with the overrun compressed. Mine
drops off easily in this position. Mind the car bodywork tho, as once
unhitched the overrun will return to its normal extension....
  #4 (permalink)  
Old October 12th 04, 07:15 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Richard Brookman
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 467
Default Alko stabiliser hitch

So Nigel Crompton was, like

On Tue, 12 Oct 2004 17:10:54 +0000 (UTC), "Richard Brookman"
wrote:

When we got our van in 2002 we had an Alko stabiliser hitch fitted
(maroon colour with integral lock). We've always had a problem
unhitching from the car, when the hitch refuses to let go of the
towball, despite shunting the


A problem I had. Try unhitching with the overrun compressed. Mine
drops off easily in this position. Mind the car bodywork tho, as once
unhitched the overrun will return to its normal extension....


You may just be right. It always lets go in the end, and compressing the
overrun may be the thing that does it.

Hardly easy or satisfactory, though, is it - for an expensive product?
Assuming a level pitch, reverse caravan to position, stop car, get out, set
van brake, return to car, reverse 3 inches, set car handbrake, return to
van, wind down jockey wheel, release coupling handle, lift coupling, return
to car to move out of way of slowly-extending coupling head...

Brian James car trailer with no fancy coupling, loaded with 2 tonnes of
competition Land Rover: stop car, set trailer brake, lift coupling handle,
wind down jockey wheel, drive car away, have cup of tea.

Simple is best.


--

Rich

Series 2a
RR 4.6
V8 trialler
dog, wife, kids, whatever


  #5 (permalink)  
Old October 12th 04, 07:15 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Richard Brookman
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 467
Default Alko stabiliser hitch

So Nigel Crompton was, like

On Tue, 12 Oct 2004 17:10:54 +0000 (UTC), "Richard Brookman"
wrote:

When we got our van in 2002 we had an Alko stabiliser hitch fitted
(maroon colour with integral lock). We've always had a problem
unhitching from the car, when the hitch refuses to let go of the
towball, despite shunting the


A problem I had. Try unhitching with the overrun compressed. Mine
drops off easily in this position. Mind the car bodywork tho, as once
unhitched the overrun will return to its normal extension....


You may just be right. It always lets go in the end, and compressing the
overrun may be the thing that does it.

Hardly easy or satisfactory, though, is it - for an expensive product?
Assuming a level pitch, reverse caravan to position, stop car, get out, set
van brake, return to car, reverse 3 inches, set car handbrake, return to
van, wind down jockey wheel, release coupling handle, lift coupling, return
to car to move out of way of slowly-extending coupling head...

Brian James car trailer with no fancy coupling, loaded with 2 tonnes of
competition Land Rover: stop car, set trailer brake, lift coupling handle,
wind down jockey wheel, drive car away, have cup of tea.

Simple is best.


--

Rich

Series 2a
RR 4.6
V8 trialler
dog, wife, kids, whatever


  #6 (permalink)  
Old October 12th 04, 09:38 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Hitch Lock
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 692
Default Alko stabiliser hitch

In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
Richard Brookman wrote:


Hardly easy or satisfactory, though, is it - for an expensive product?
Assuming a level pitch, reverse caravan to position, stop car, get
out, set van brake, return to car, reverse 3 inches, set car
handbrake, return to van, wind down jockey wheel, release coupling
handle, lift coupling, return to car to move out of way of
slowly-extending coupling head...

No, it's not satisfactory. But you have to be careful with *any* hitch (not
just the stabiliser type) if you unhitch with the over-run brake mechanism
compressed. I have a bumper protection plate which extends a few inches
above the towball. When I unhitch my (bog standard) hitch, I only wind the
caravan up far enough to be just clear of the ball - and then move the car
out of the way. In the meantime, if the hitch does move forward, it doesn't
do any damage because it is constrained by the plate.
--
Cheers,
Hitch Lock
______
Please reply to newsgroup. Reply address is invalid.


  #7 (permalink)  
Old October 12th 04, 09:38 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Hitch Lock
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 692
Default Alko stabiliser hitch

In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
Richard Brookman wrote:


Hardly easy or satisfactory, though, is it - for an expensive product?
Assuming a level pitch, reverse caravan to position, stop car, get
out, set van brake, return to car, reverse 3 inches, set car
handbrake, return to van, wind down jockey wheel, release coupling
handle, lift coupling, return to car to move out of way of
slowly-extending coupling head...

No, it's not satisfactory. But you have to be careful with *any* hitch (not
just the stabiliser type) if you unhitch with the over-run brake mechanism
compressed. I have a bumper protection plate which extends a few inches
above the towball. When I unhitch my (bog standard) hitch, I only wind the
caravan up far enough to be just clear of the ball - and then move the car
out of the way. In the meantime, if the hitch does move forward, it doesn't
do any damage because it is constrained by the plate.
--
Cheers,
Hitch Lock
______
Please reply to newsgroup. Reply address is invalid.


  #8 (permalink)  
Old October 13th 04, 02:44 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
David Halley
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 24
Default Alko stabiliser hitch




"Richard Brookman" wrote in message
...
When we got our van in 2002 we had an Alko stabiliser hitch fitted (maroon
colour with integral lock). We've always had a problem unhitching from

the
car, when the hitch refuses to let go of the towball, despite shunting the
car to and fro, playing with van handbrake, pushing and pulling etc. At
its worst, it can lift the back of the Range Rover about 4" and still not
let go. It has happened from our first trip with the van and is a problem
every time we arrive anywhere (or even when I'm moving the thing around at
home). Eventually it will release, but I never know what I have done to

make
it let go.

I've always assumed it was my fault (poor technique, first caravan and

all),
even though I have had no problems with any other trailer, even my car
transporter, which is probably double the weight of the van when it's

fully
loaded. However, I took the van into the supplying dealer for some

warranty
work today and (thank goodness) the hitch wouldn't unhitch, so he saw the
problem. He's advised me that he's had lots of similar complaints from
other owners, and that this failure to release is a known problem.

Friction
pads won't pull back, or something. A new improved model is now on sale

for
about 280. I don't feel inclined to pay this.

Has anyone else heard of this? Is it a "known problem"? He's going to

try
to fix it, but if this doesn't work I think I'll just reinstall the

original
hitch as supplied with the van. We've had no problems with stability,
whether the stabiliser pads have been engaged or not. Any thoughts?

TIA

--

Rich

Series 2a
RR 4.6
V8 trialler
dog, wife, kids, whatever


We have seen this once with the 2004 style head and it was caused by putting
the caravan onto the ball withut the handle in the fully upright position.
This compromised the alignment of the pads stopping them retracting
properly.

If you replace the pads it should relieve the problem.

When hitching or unhitching the stabiliser handle must be fully upright, it
locks in that position.

When unhitching, lift the inner handle first before raising the jockey
wheel.

Hope this helps

Cheers

David


www.halleycaravans.co.uk
www.halleysgarage.co.uk

Please note and read these warnings and requirements:

Confidentiality: This e-mail transmission is strictly confidential and
intended solely for the addressee. It may contain privileged and
confidential information and if you are not the intended recipient, you
must not copy or distribute it. If you have received this e-mail in
error, please notify the sender and delete the e-mail transmission
immediately.


  #9 (permalink)  
Old October 13th 04, 02:44 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
David Halley
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 24
Default Alko stabiliser hitch




"Richard Brookman" wrote in message
...
When we got our van in 2002 we had an Alko stabiliser hitch fitted (maroon
colour with integral lock). We've always had a problem unhitching from

the
car, when the hitch refuses to let go of the towball, despite shunting the
car to and fro, playing with van handbrake, pushing and pulling etc. At
its worst, it can lift the back of the Range Rover about 4" and still not
let go. It has happened from our first trip with the van and is a problem
every time we arrive anywhere (or even when I'm moving the thing around at
home). Eventually it will release, but I never know what I have done to

make
it let go.

I've always assumed it was my fault (poor technique, first caravan and

all),
even though I have had no problems with any other trailer, even my car
transporter, which is probably double the weight of the van when it's

fully
loaded. However, I took the van into the supplying dealer for some

warranty
work today and (thank goodness) the hitch wouldn't unhitch, so he saw the
problem. He's advised me that he's had lots of similar complaints from
other owners, and that this failure to release is a known problem.

Friction
pads won't pull back, or something. A new improved model is now on sale

for
about 280. I don't feel inclined to pay this.

Has anyone else heard of this? Is it a "known problem"? He's going to

try
to fix it, but if this doesn't work I think I'll just reinstall the

original
hitch as supplied with the van. We've had no problems with stability,
whether the stabiliser pads have been engaged or not. Any thoughts?

TIA

--

Rich

Series 2a
RR 4.6
V8 trialler
dog, wife, kids, whatever


We have seen this once with the 2004 style head and it was caused by putting
the caravan onto the ball withut the handle in the fully upright position.
This compromised the alignment of the pads stopping them retracting
properly.

If you replace the pads it should relieve the problem.

When hitching or unhitching the stabiliser handle must be fully upright, it
locks in that position.

When unhitching, lift the inner handle first before raising the jockey
wheel.

Hope this helps

Cheers

David


www.halleycaravans.co.uk
www.halleysgarage.co.uk

Please note and read these warnings and requirements:

Confidentiality: This e-mail transmission is strictly confidential and
intended solely for the addressee. It may contain privileged and
confidential information and if you are not the intended recipient, you
must not copy or distribute it. If you have received this e-mail in
error, please notify the sender and delete the e-mail transmission
immediately.


  #10 (permalink)  
Old October 13th 04, 04:39 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Richard Brookman
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 467
Default Alko stabiliser hitch

So Hitch Lock was, like

No, it's not satisfactory. But you have to be careful with *any*
hitch (not just the stabiliser type) if you unhitch with the over-run
brake mechanism compressed. I have a bumper protection plate which
extends a few inches above the towball. When I unhitch my (bog
standard) hitch, I only wind the caravan up far enough to be just
clear of the ball - and then move the car out of the way. In the
meantime, if the hitch does move forward, it doesn't do any damage
because it is constrained by the plate.


With all trailers, I always pull forward slightly before trying to unhitch.
I also have a plate as you describe. However, with the Al-ko stabiliser,
whether the overrun is compressed or not makes no difference. It releases
when it chooses to, no matter how much I have shunted the car and van back
and forth. When it's ready, it's ready. :-)

--

Rich

Series 2a
RR 4.6
V8 trialler
dog, wife, kids, whatever


 



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