Gavin, welcome to the forums.
When your van and tow vehicle are perfectly in a straight line, very important, then the bracket should be about 30% from the end of the arm.
In other words, there should be 30% of the total length of the stearing arm still behind the bracket, this is to allow from turning to still hold the arm in the bracket. (Free movement should always be allowedfor in the bracket).
Best way to achieve a straight line if you have s p ace, would be to tow the caravan for some 20 + meters with stearing wheel straight forward.
You should also get some assistance from members by tomorrow when they start returning from oliday breaks.
Hope you get sorted out soon.
Not sure why you have two brackets, but I would use the one with te sure clip to prevent the stearing arm from "popping" out when going over speed humps etc.
Also, donot put your safety chain over thetrapezium's ball, underneath it, these should be a hook specially for the chain or cable.
Search on Geerd's topic, "Teleurgesteld in Trapezium" if you understand Afrikaans, there is some good info there.
I have the installation guide if you want a copy.
e-mail me at dgreen @ webafrica dot gov dot za
Mail with attachment has been sent.
Here is an extract from the document received with the Trapezium:
Servicing And Adjustment
The sealed bearing Trapezium needs no servicing except the occassional check that everything is in place and all nuts/bolts are tight. It is recommended that after 5 years the unit be stripped, cleaned internally and regreased.
It is not forseen that bearing bushes will ever need replacement unless damage has occurred. Apart from the initial alignment no adjustments are ever required.
Some forum members have also reported problems with the Trapezium becoming loose, but none have said how it was repaired. For your info, here is the manufacturers address:
Roodepoort , 1724
Hope this is of some help.
Fred the trapezium does not work like yellowblade does with friction. What it does is, it displace the hitch-up point closer to the rear axle of the tow vehicle. This is what gives you the beter towing stability.
As long as there is no excesive play on any of the bushes a easy moving trapezium is 100% serviceable.
Ek het hulle los te koop gesien by die Campworld in Waterkloof. Soos jy teen die bult uitry oppad na Waterkloof Hoerskool aan jou linker kant. Ou Hans Strydom laan.
Just a note of caution when using Trapezium Stabiliser.
I use a trapezium and found that the bolts on the control bar came loose on a trip to the Cederbergs this past few days. I found the trapezium quite out of alignment when driving straight so the caravan would have been crabbing. Would not like to have found out what would have happened if the control bar bolts came completely loose....
I have re-aligned, used loctite and made sure extra tight.
I suggest checking these bolts before and during any trip.
Chris, it is true what you say - IT CAN go out of alignment.
Many moons ago I added other bolts in the open space after alignment was done. I do get MANY people contacting me fot the instructions, which I offered on this forum a few years back. Still get up to 4 enquiries per month, and ususally I add the photos of my solution to that problem.
I also hed contact with Len, the manufacturer, many years ago concerning this problem. He quite agreed to my solution, and even suggested spot-welding the nuts, AFTER PROPER alignment was done, on your specific vehicle. That is by attaching the Trapezium, with nuts slightly loosened, and driving about 20 to 25 meters STRAIGHT forward, and then STOP, and tighten nuts.
THEN you can take it off, and spot-weld. Remember, the position of the plastic block on the a-frame MUST be correct!! The main action of the Trapezium is to bring the van and vehicle IN LINE.
Thank you, I could spot weld the nuts but I think I will get longer HT bolts and use additional locknuts.
Some time ago I queried whether Trapeziums ever need tightening after mine became quite loose. Concensus was that it should not be necessary. My latest is that the O-rings in the pivot points have now popped out and broken. Contacted the manufacturers a couple of months ago and was advised that they no longer service the units but you can bring in the old one and exchange it for a "new" presumably serviced unit. The exchange cost was R800 if my memory serves me well.
I decided against the repair and am now towing perfectly well without a stabilizer. Seems the secret is to get the balance right.
Tow safe and well
Each persons decision for him self and I for one respect that. The reason why I prefer to tow with one is mainly for future insurance atitude.
If a combination (caravan and tow vehicle) is writen off any insurance will try anything to preven paying such claim as it is a lot of money.
Haven't used the stabilizer as an excuse yet but I do not want to be the first one.
I also tow at respectable speeds and keep the road conditions in mind but theres always that OTHER DRIVER that you can not always be prepared for.
Im new to the forum and new to the trapezium. I have bought a second hand caravan and I got a trapezium with it. I have a question about the bracket on the A Frame, the Plactic U cup which the bar sits in on my bracket swizels (its not tight) and I was wondering does this need to be tight so there is no movement, and should the bar move freely up and down the bracket?
Hope someone can help me
Gary the plastic U-Cup can rotate it does not need to be tight. While the vehicle is turning the bar should move forward and rearward in the U-Cup. If you look in the first picture of this topic right at the beginning you will see two types of U-cups.
One without a wire retaining clip on the left and one with the wire retaining clip. The correct one for the Trapezium is the one with the wire retaining clip.
The other one looks similar but is actually for a Tando stabilizer.
You see on the Trapezium there is no downward force other than gravity to hold the stabilizer arm in the U-cup. Thus the need of the wire retaining clip. It is purely just there to prevent the arm comming out of the U-cup.
On the Tando stabilizer you have to lift the arm up against the force of the rubber in the bracket before you place it in the U-cup thus it will never come out by itself.
If you don't have the wire retaining clip just take a small thin cable tie and strap it loose around the arm and U-cup. This will prevent accidental slipping out of the arm and it is small enough that you break the cable tie when you unhitch the caravan.
Worked perfectly when I used a Trapezium. I had the Tando U-cup.
Thanls Leon, I have one with the retaining clip, I was just worried that the cup might have worked loose.