Stabilizer Jacks... I need to make a quick decision

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Stabilizer Jacks... I need to make a quick decision

Postby Guest » Fri Jun 03, 2005 10:57 pm

Can someone that's using the BAL Standard T-type stabilizer jacks tell me what the height is of this unit when it's in the stowed or collapsed position?
I see that they need to mount to the underside of a cross member or use a special channel.
I'm looking at putting them on all four corners and I'll need to slide my front and rear crossmember towards the center of the trailer a bit to get coverage on my side wall skirt, so as to miss going beyond my ellipses.
My other option is going with the Atwood drop downs, which will stow tucked up inside on the side of the front and rear crossmember.
I've never used either one, but I like the idea of having an access hole in my skirt for the adjustment wrench on the BAL type so that I don't have to reach up under the trailer to deploy the Atwoods.
Come hell or high water, I want to get my frame cut and welded this weekend and I'll need to know how far I need to move the front and rear crossmembers so that the BAL type hide under the skirt.

http://www.dyersonline.com/pc-1487-246-bal-tent-trailer-stabilizing-jacks-17.aspx
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Postby madjack » Fri Jun 03, 2005 11:36 pm

...I can't answer your specific question BUT I have the atwoods and will not use them again in the future because the adjustment mechanism just plain stinks(sometimes really simple is not the best way to go), in fact while the atwoods are better than nothing(debatable) that is all they are
madjack 8)

p.s. I believe that Mike has the BAL jacks on his l'il diner

p.p.s. the jc whitney site has a small amt. more nfo than the site you listed http://tinyurl.com/dxcuy they are also a little cheaper...dunno about shipping though
Last edited by madjack on Sat Jun 04, 2005 12:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Guest » Fri Jun 03, 2005 11:57 pm

Madjack,
Thanks for the heads up on those Atwoods...
I've contacted Mike on this, but he must be busy or out of town...
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Postby madjack » Sat Jun 04, 2005 12:06 am

...Dean, Fulton make a similar jack to the atwoods, I havent used them but in looking at them they have a more positive racheting mechanism than the atwoods
here is a link on the BAL jacks thru jc whitney...a little more info and a cheaper price http://tinyurl.com/dxcuy
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Postby Guest » Sat Jun 04, 2005 12:34 am

Madjack,
Thanks Again...
Hmmm... From 3 1/2"... I hope that's not fully stowed because my skirt only is only 3" below the crossmember to hide the dropped footwell and tounge.
(Gonna head out to the shop and take a look at my template, see how far I need to move those crossmembers...)
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Postby Michael W » Sat Jun 04, 2005 8:21 am

It's true, the Atwoods are only stabalizers and not jacks. On our teardrop, we use two, one at each rear corner. Here is how we use them that works well for us. At the campsite, after unhooking from the tow vehicle, we use the tounge jack to lower the front end as low as possible. We then lower the sabalizers and extend the legs until the touch the ground. Finally, we use the tounge jack to raise the front end back up until the trailer is level, using a bubble level attached to the coupler as a guide. This give a nice, staple three point attachment. I mounted them by bolting them to plates welded into the corners that double as frame corner gussets.
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Postby Guest » Sat Jun 04, 2005 1:06 pm

Micheal,
Thanks... That's a pretty clean looking setup.
I believe I've found good info on the stowed height of the BAL T-Type. (2")
I wasn't happy with how far I had to move my front and rear crossmembers so that the stowed jacks would hide under the skirt, so I'm leaving the crossmembers as is.
I'm looking at mounting these jacks on the siderails, which will put the adjustment points at the front and rear ends of the trailer.

I'm tired of pondering over little issues like this for parts that I don't have in my hands yet.
I've already far exceeded my quota of head scratchin' on this project in the design stage alone... :lol:
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Postby ralaco » Sat Jun 04, 2005 1:42 pm

I think this is the best way to go:

BAL Scissor Jack
https://www.rvsurplussalvage.com/catalo ... uct_id=195
:thumbsup:

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Postby GeorgeT » Sat Jun 04, 2005 1:46 pm

I have those BAL T-type on my camper. The height at the end where the little mounting tab is is 2 inches. The other end where there is no tab is 1 7/8 inches. Don't know if that little eighth inch difference would be important but just in case. ;)
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Postby purplepickup » Sat Jun 04, 2005 3:09 pm

Michael W wrote:... the Atwoods are only stabilizers

Michael, do they work similar to a camera tripod?....the inner part slides out to any level you want, then you lock it in place?

That might be what I'm looking for. I want to level the trailer using the tongue jack also. I could use some for my utility trailer too.
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Postby Chris C » Sat Jun 04, 2005 9:35 pm

The scissor jacks ralaco suggested are typical of the jacks on lightweitht automobiles. Should be available at junkyards for around $8 apiece.
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Postby ralaco » Sun Jun 05, 2005 6:29 pm

Chris:

I don’t know if an automotive jack could work, as BAL scissor jacks are double in size and heavier.
:thinking:

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Postby Chris C » Sun Jun 05, 2005 6:45 pm

ralaco, it stands to reason to me that if it will pick up a mini-van, it should pick up a teardrop trailer. The only "if" I see is the amount of elevation. But a block cut from a 4x4 timber should make up the difference. Just mount the scissor jack upside down and put a 1/4" pin in the block. Hey, if it'll save a buck and still do the job, I'm all for it.
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Postby asianflava » Sun Jun 05, 2005 11:12 pm

I think Steve put automotive jacks on the Stripper. I happen to have 2 Hondas that aren't working (for now), I was going to use those in the meantime. I even saw some 12V jacks at PepBoys that have a motor on them. Just hook them up to power and hit the button. I think they all are limited to about a 16inch lift.
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Postby cracker39 » Mon Jul 25, 2005 7:52 pm

For the thrifty, a cheap way to go is to use stacking stabilizer jacks. Set of 4 is only 33.95. I used them with a pop up years ago. They aren't for lifting, just stabilizing. I made wood "chocks" out of a series of 1x8, in different lengths to make a "ramp", using as many as needed to lift one side by driving the camper's low wheel up on to them. Once it was pretty level, I chocked from the other side to keep it from rolling off, then leveled with the tongue jack, and finally put the stabilizers under the 4 corners. I did lift a little with them to fine tune the levels.


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