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peterpam
28th January 2008, 05:57 PM
Can anyone tell me whether weight distibution bars can be fitted to a Discovery 3 SE. I seem to be getting mixed messages. We tow a 20ft 3 tonne caravan.

djhampson
28th January 2008, 06:50 PM
We were discussing this on our trip yesterday with WhiteD3.

We do use them on Dad's SE D3 when towing the boat but as to wether we should or need to I don't know?

Be interested to hear what others think.

Bushwanderer
28th January 2008, 07:03 PM
Hi Peterpam,
It's best to not start the same thread in two difference parts of AULRO.

Moderators, I suggest that this thread be merged with that on the Series 3 SIG and moved to the D3 Zone.

Thanks All,

RonMcGr
28th January 2008, 08:12 PM
Can anyone tell me whether weight distibution bars can be fitted to a Discovery 3 SE. I seem to be getting mixed messages. We tow a 20ft 3 tonne caravan.

With a Caravan of that weight, I'd suggest a Hayman Reece towing hitch. It will lift the dead weight off the rear of the vehicle and help put more weight forward to the steering wheels.
They also help a little to stabilize the whole rig.

Bushwanderer
28th January 2008, 08:30 PM
With a Caravan of that weight, I'd suggest a Hayman Reece towing hitch. It will lift the dead weight off the rear of the vehicle and help put more weight forward to the steering wheels.
They also help a little to stabilize the whole rig.

Hi Ron,
It looks like you & I are going to "lock horns" on this one. :(

You make your statement without any reference to towball load. With SLS if the load exceeds that permitted by LR, the load distribution should be adjusted - not a "patch" attempted.

If the towball load is within spec. no load levellers necessary (or recommended).

Best Wishes,

RonMcGr
29th January 2008, 09:47 AM
Hi Ron,
It looks like you & I are going to "lock horns" on this one. :(

You make your statement without any reference to towball load. With SLS if the load exceeds that permitted by LR, the load distribution should be adjusted - not a "patch" attempted.

If the towball load is within spec. no load levellers necessary (or recommended).

Best Wishes,

Peter,
"Locking Horns" is not exactly a term I would use.

However, seeing that you have made this statement: "If the towball load is within spec. no load levellers necessary (or recommended)."

How big is the Caravan you tow behind your vehicle?

My Caravan is only just over a tonne and I use them as the **** of the Disco drops when the van is connected.
The WDH keeps the whole rig, LEVEL.

Peterpams van is 3 TONNE!! That would be far worse than mine. I realise Land Rovers are almost perfect, however every other large 4WD you see on the road towing a large caravan, has WDH fitted.

I look forward to your reply :confused:

harlie
29th January 2008, 10:31 AM
I'm with Ron on this one.
Our (now ex) boat was 2.8t (~240kg ball) and it was plain dangerous at highway speeds with out the LDH. Yes I know I only have a D2 but the SLS rear end works the same. It’s when you take weight off the front axle that the steering geometries change. The D3 has SLS front so the height will remain the same (by reducing preasure) but the spring & shock rate will be vastly different. LDH also takes any “bucking” out of the rig at speed over poor highway foundations.

I think the concern is SLS would allow you to overload the LDH and cause undue stress to the towbar. I first set mine up with the car battery disconnected (to disable SLS) – took measurements front and rear (wheel centre to top of wheel arch) with no trailer – hitched trailer and adjusted LDH so both front and rear dropped the same distance. Marked LDH chains with paint to ensure the same adjustment each time. It would be possible to over stress LDH if the SLS is not disabled as the SLS will continue to adjust and the weight will not be able to be measured (if that makes sence)

Shocks on the trailer/van also make a huge difference.

Ednic
29th January 2008, 10:43 AM
There is some conjecture over whether or not weight distributing equipment is required or even necessary on a Discovery with SLS when towing.

I own a TD5 with SLS and tow a 17 ft. caravan with an all up weight in excess of 1600 kg. and use a Hayman Reece device.

The difference with and without the load levelling equipment is considerable.

Even though Land Rover do not recommend the use of this equipment on vehicles with SLS, I never the less use it and would not consider towing the van without it.

I realise that this is not answering the question regarding the Disco 3 but I guess the same principles apply..

Cheers

BigJon
29th January 2008, 10:47 AM
A bulletin from Land Rover Australia states do not use load levelling devices on Discovery 3 fitted with air suspension.

RonMcGr
29th January 2008, 11:21 AM
A bulletin from Land Rover Australia states do not use load levelling devices on Discovery 3 fitted with air suspension.

I wonder what LRA would do, if you presented that to your insurance company, after loosing it and crashing with a 3 tonne van behind it, all due to far too light steering? :D

Pedro_The_Swift
29th January 2008, 11:57 AM
I wonder what LRA would do, if you presented that to your insurance company, after loosing it and crashing with a 3 tonne van behind it, all due to far too light steering? :D


or conversely if the rear SLS, fooled by the WDH, was only running at min pressure??

thats what the SLS does.
if your D3 (or any SLS equiped LR ) is not level, when within loaded specs, then there is a problem,,

Jamo
29th January 2008, 01:51 PM
Dudes, some of you are making statements based on your knowledge of D2's with SLS.

The vehicle in question is a D3 with air. Different kettle of fish.

As BigJon pointed out, the manual actually states not to use WDH with a D3 with air suspension. As to warranty and insurance, that to me would infer use of WDH may have negative implications therewith.

The D3 doesn't have SLS as you know it. It has levelling, but involves the ecu adjusting each corner. It's a lot more sophisticated than a simple SLS system, which is why it's called 'Dynamic' Air Suspension. As Pedro says, a WDH may confuse the system and may create a dangerous handling problem.



(If Australian van manufacturers designed the weight distribution of their vans better, no one would need WDH)

gghaggis
30th January 2008, 12:08 PM
Dudes, some of you are making statements based on your knowledge of D2's with SLS.

The vehicle in question is a D3 with air. Different kettle of fish.

As BigJon pointed out, the manual actually states not to use WDH with a D3 with air suspension. As to warranty and insurance, that to me would infer use of WDH may have negative implications therewith.

The D3 doesn't have SLS as you know it. It has levelling, but involves the ecu adjusting each corner. It's a lot more sophisticated than a simple SLS system, which is why it's called 'Dynamic' Air Suspension. As Pedro says, a WDH may confuse the system and may create a dangerous handling problem.


What he said .........

Cheers,

Gordon

RonMcGr
30th January 2008, 01:14 PM
Peterpam,

You appear to be getting some advice that I would totally ignore :mad:

WDH and anti sway bars are VERY important when it comes to Caravans. Those who say "DON'T" have probably never towed a Caravan in their life!

This is an article I posted in another section, written by a man who KNOWS about towing :D

Caravan & Motorhome :: Travel : Touring : RV : Camping : Tips : Reviews : News : Forum (http://www.candm.com.au/archive_tom/current.php)

He states:

MAXIMISING STABILITY

Tom Olthoff looks at how you can maximise your rig’s stability with the rig equipment.

Words and photography by Tom Olthoff (For pics see article)

Some caravanners are of the opinion that caravan or trailer sway is akin to a fait accompli, in other words, they are going to do it whether you like it or not. Of course, nothing is further from the truth yet many caravanners are making hard work of towing.

In Tom’s Workshop last year we explained why it is necessary to design and load a caravan so as to provide the correct balance. This generally means that about 10 percent of the total caravan weight is sitting on the towball.

But having the right balance is only the starting point. It is also necessary to add the right towing equipment and adjust this to provide the correct attitude of the car and van. I often liken the equipment that joins the trailer to the tow vehicle to insurance. And when it comes to towing equipment many caravanners are under-insured.

Lack of proper towing equipment can be result of poor advice, lack of appreciation as to what the benefits are or a sales person saying to the customer “see how it goes and if you have any problems come back and we’ll fit a hitch”.


There is no substitute when it comes to having the right towing equipment.

No one is going to take a new car or caravan out on the road without insurance, hoping that they won’t have an accident. We take out insurance for a ‘just in case’ situation. We insure our home in case it catches fire due to an electrical problem or if it is trashed after a break-in.

Similarly we insure the car so that when someone drives in to it or we run off the road during a lapse in concentration and cause some damage. The same applies to the van. When it comes to the towbar, load distributing equipment and perhaps an anti-sway device we should work on the premise that not all driving or towing conditions are perfect.

One day it may be blowing a gale, a road-train overtakes under less than ideal conditions, some cattle may amble across the road or a kangaroo carcass is lying in your path. Any of these and other conditions may need you to take swift evasive action. This is when you find out if you have the rig set up to offer maximum safety and stability.


THE TOWBAR

It should go without saying that the towbar must be suitable for the load being pulled. More importantly it must be the right design so as to allow the use of the appropriate load distributing equipment. Basically there are two types of the towbars, a standard towbar that has a bolt-on lug, tongue or ballmount and a ‘hitch receiver’ where the ballmount is held in place with a strong pin. The latter is also known as a square-hole towbar, Hayman Reese towbar (there are about six manufacturers of this type of towbar) and a heavy-duty towbar.
Standard Towbar
It is important to suit the right type of towbar to suit the load being towed.

Irrespective of the name given to it, it is the rating or towing capacity of the towbar that is important. For light trailers or any that have a ball load that is less than 130kg, a towbar with a bolt on lug is fine, the reason being that there is no load distributing equipment available with a higher capacity than 130kg that can be attached to a simple flat tongue.


This type of ball mount can handle ball loads up to about 130kg with the right levelling equipment.

For trailers with higher ball loads, a hitch receiver is required so that the required levelling equipment can be fitted. It should be noted that some car manufacturers recommend that a hitch receiver is used for lower ball loads. For example, some Subaru products requires a 50mm square hitch receiver to be fitted when the ball load exceeds 90kg to enable a load distributing hitch to be used.


While some may consider that a weight distribution hitch on a rig such as this is overkill, it certainly adds to the towing safety when the ball load is 110kg which is enough to affect the attitude of a car.
On the other end of the scale some manufacturers suggest that a ‘standard towbar is suitable up to a towing load of 1600kg although there is no way of adequately coping with a ball load of 160kg or thereabouts.


WEIGHT DISTRIBUTING OR LOAD LEVELLING HITCH

A weight distributing hitch (we’ll refer to it as a WDH) is generally a misunderstood piece of equipment. To understand its function we need to appreciate what happen to a tow vehicle when a vertical load is placed on a towball. Most will agree that the back of a car goes down when ever a trailer is hitched on. What is not always appreciated is that as the back goes down, the front rises. Just think of a seesaw but instead of the pivot point being in the centre, imaging it being off to one end.


A WDH is often the key to safe towing


A car is like a seesaw when a load is applied to the towball.

We now have two problems. Not only is the rear axle carrying an excessive amount of load, there is less contact between the front tyres and the road. This is a most undesirable situation as the amount of tyre contact of the front wheels affects the steering and braking. And if it is a front wheel drive car, also the traction.


With the van hitched to the car there is an extra 200kg on the rear axle. This is made up of the 150kg ball load plus 50kg transferred from the front axle.

Some people, often 4WD owners, believe that the fix consists of simply fitting stronger springs or air bags to the rear suspension. All this does is raise the rear and leaves the front of the vehicle higher than before the trailer was hitched on. Similarly some that own cars with self-levelling suspension mistakenly believe that takes care of the load on the towball. Self-levelling suspension is designed to maintain a set vehicle height with occupants and luggage on board. Not when there is a vertical load a considerable distance behind the rear axle.

Relying on self-levelling suspension to take care of the load on the towball can result in expensive repairs to the air compressor and/or airbags.


ANTI-SWAY EQUIPMENT

This is unfortunately another misunderstood piece of equipment. Anti-sway equipment has nothing to do with a weight distributing hitch (WDH) although some believe that a WDH cures sway or instability. This could be true if sway was caused by the tow vehicle going along with a nose-up attitude. But when a trailer wags its tail when being passed by a large truck or a strong gust of wind then something other than a WDH may be required.

It should be stressed that anti-sway equipment should not be added to a rig that behaves in an unstable manner most of the time or when going a bit faster than normal. The first step in these situations is to find the basic cause. This could be incorrect loading, wrong type of towing equipment, incompatible outfit or adopting the wrong towing skills.

Special anti-sway equipment should be considered as additional safety or insurance. There are three general types. There is a coupling with spring loaded pads that clamp on to the towball, a sliding friction device that bolts on to the side of the drawbar and attaches to the ball mount and a ‘dual-cam’ anti-sway unit that is used in conjunction with a Hayman Reese weight distributing hitch. The latter has a useful self-centring function which not only prevents sideways movement, it also brings the trailer back to a straight ahead position.
The Alko 3000 stabilisers have a mechanism that allows the coupling to tightly grip the towball and reduce swaying tendencies.
A friction sway control can be added to most outfits
A dual cam sway control has a self-centering action that helps stability.


SUMMARY

There is really no substitute for having the right towing equipment. Apart from making sure that the car and van stay together, it also reduces the stresses that can be associated with towing. Any well set-up car-trailer combination will tow in a stable manner without causing any concerns. But sadly there are many excellent caravans being towed by equally excellent towing vehicles that are an accident waiting to happen due to the lack of the right towing equipment.

Having the right towbar, weight distributing hitch and, if towing a large van, an anti-sway device should be seen as being just as important as settling for a car and van that has appeal. Don’t wait until something goes wrong to make the investment. Do it all to start with and you will be able to handle any situation that may arise and be ready, just-in-case there is something unexpected.


Even a 4WD with a single axle pop-top can become difficult to handle without a weight distributing hitch.


A small van with a high ball load due to the axle being located towards the rear also needs a weight distributing hitch
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Mate,

I hope that clears the matter up for you :D

Cheers

BigJon
30th January 2008, 01:30 PM
I am pretty sure that LR would have done towing tests. I would think that a D3 with air suspension would not require a load distribution system provided that the ball weight does not exceed the manufacturers spec.

If you have a higher ball weight and you need a distribution hitch, I think you are using the wrong tow vehicle.

djhampson
30th January 2008, 01:31 PM
I'm still not convinced Ron. LR have stated twice (in the manual and the bulletin that BigJon mentioned) not to use WDH.

Next time we take the boat out I'm going to leave the springs off.

Bushwanderer
30th January 2008, 04:53 PM
Hi Ron,
You've obviously put a lot of work into this but still appears to be relevant for older technology vehicles. IIRC, the D3 has a towing capacity of 3500kg & a max towball load of 150kg. Therefore, an airbag suspended D3 towing a vehicle within these parameters, should NOT need WDHs.

I'll qualify your post, below, to fit my beliefs. Let me say, that my towing experience, to date, has been with a D1, with coils, and, FOR THAT VEHICLE, I wouldn't be without a WDH.

My D3, also has coils & I will use a WDH, as appropriate.

However, we are talking about a D3 here with ACTIVE suspension, which neither your, nor I, have driven under the proposed conditions. (BTW thanks to those who corrected me for using the misleading term SLS.)


Peterpam,

You appear to be getting some advice that I would (will?) totally ignore :mad:

WDH and anti sway bars are VERY important when it comes to Caravans (when being towed by vehicles with "old" technology suspension). Those who say "DON'T" have probably never towed a Caravan in their life! (It's counterproductive to generalise, and in my case, this is incorrect.)

This is an article I posted in another section, written by a man who KNOWS about towing :D

Caravan & Motorhome :: Travel : Touring : RV : Camping : Tips : Reviews : News : Forum (http://www.candm.com.au/archive_tom/current.php)

He states:

MAXIMISING STABILITY

Tom Olthoff looks at how you can maximise your rig’s stability with the rig equipment.

Words and photography by Tom Olthoff (For pics see article)

Some caravanners are of the opinion that caravan or trailer sway is akin to a fait accompli, in other words, they are going to do it whether you like it or not. Of course, nothing is further from the truth yet many caravanners are making hard work of towing. (Agreed)

In Tom’s Workshop last year we explained why it is necessary to design and load a caravan so as to provide the correct balance. This generally means that about 10 percent of the total caravan weight is sitting on the towball.
(Agreed, with the proviso that it not exceed the towball max load)

But having the right balance is only the starting point. It is also necessary to add the right towing equipment and adjust this to provide the correct attitude of the car and van. I often liken the equipment that joins the trailer to the tow vehicle to insurance. And when it comes to towing equipment many caravanners are under-insured. (Agreed)

Lack of proper towing equipment can be result of poor advice, lack of appreciation as to what the benefits are or a sales person saying to the customer “see how it goes and if you have any problems come back and we’ll fit a hitch”. (Agreed)


There is no substitute when it comes to having the right towing equipment. (Agreed)

No one is going to take a new car or caravan out on the road without insurance, hoping that they won’t have an accident. We take out insurance for a ‘just in case’ situation. We insure our home in case it catches fire due to an electrical problem or if it is trashed after a break-in. (Agreed)

Similarly we insure the car so that when someone drives in to it or we run off the road during a lapse in concentration and cause some damage. The same applies to the van. When it comes to the towbar, load distributing equipment and perhaps an anti-sway device we should work on the premise that not all driving or towing conditions are perfect. (Agreed)

One day it may be blowing a gale, a road-train overtakes under less than ideal conditions, some cattle may amble across the road or a kangaroo carcass is lying in your path. Any of these and other conditions may need you to take swift evasive action. This is when you find out if you have the rig set up to offer maximum safety and stability. (Agreed)


THE TOWBAR

It should go without saying that the towbar must be suitable for the load being pulled. More importantly it must be the right design so as to allow the use of the appropriate (my emphasis) load distributing equipment. Basically there are two types of the towbars, a standard towbar that has a bolt-on lug, tongue or ballmount and a ‘hitch receiver’ where the ballmount is held in place with a strong pin. The latter is also known as a square-hole towbar, Hayman Reese towbar (there are about six manufacturers of this type of towbar) and a heavy-duty towbar. (Accepted)
Standard Towbar
It is important to suit the right type of towbar to suit the load being towed.

Irrespective of the name given to it, it is the rating or towing capacity of the towbar that is important. For light trailers or any that have a ball load that is less than 130kg, a towbar with a bolt on lug is fine, the reason being that there is no load distributing equipment available with a higher capacity than 130kg that can be attached to a simple flat tongue.


This type of ball mount can handle ball loads up to about 130kg with the right levelling equipment (including DAS)

For trailers with higher ball loads, a hitch receiver (often) is required so that the required levelling equipment can be fitted. It should be noted that some car manufacturers recommend that a hitch receiver is used for lower ball loads. For example, some Subaru products requires a 50mm square hitch receiver to be fitted when the ball load exceeds 90kg to enable a load distributing hitch to be used. (Accepted)


While some may consider that a weight distribution hitch on a rig such as this is overkill, it certainly adds to the towing safety when the ball load is 110kg which is (may be) enough to affect the attitude of a car.
On the other end of the scale some manufacturers suggest that a ‘standard towbar is suitable up to a towing load of 1600kg although there is no way of adequately coping with a ball load of 160kg or thereabouts. (IIRC the recommended max towball load for a D3, is 150kg)


WEIGHT DISTRIBUTING OR LOAD LEVELLING HITCH

A weight distributing hitch (we’ll refer to it as a WDH) is generally a misunderstood piece of equipment. To understand its function we need to appreciate what happen to a tow vehicle when a vertical load is placed on a towball. Most will agree that the back of a car goes down when ever a trailer is hitched on (in older technology suspensions). What is not always appreciated is that as the back goes down, the front rises. Just think of a seesaw but instead of the pivot point being in the centre, imaging it being off to one end. (Agreed, unless the DAS corrects for this)


A WDH is often (my emphasis) the key to safe towing


A car is like a seesaw when a load is applied to the towball (in older technology suspension vehicles).

We now have two problems. Not only is the rear axle carrying an excessive amount of load, there is less contact between the front tyres and the road (in older technology suspension vehicles). This is a most undesirable situation as the amount of tyre contact of the front wheels affects the steering and braking. And if it is a front wheel drive car, also the traction. (Agreed)


With the van hitched to the car there is an extra 200kg on the rear axle. This is made up of the 150kg ball load plus 50kg transferred from the front axle. (in older technology suspension vehicles)

Some people, often 4WD owners, believe that the fix consists of simply fitting stronger springs or air bags to the rear suspension. All this does is raise the rear and leaves the front of the vehicle higher than before the trailer was hitched on. Similarly some that own cars with self-levelling suspension mistakenly believe that takes care of the load on the towball. Self-levelling suspension is designed to maintain a set vehicle height with occupants and luggage on board. Not when there is a vertical load a considerable distance behind the rear axle.(This, in my opinion, (if I read the D3 manual correctly) does NOT apply to D3s with DAS.)

Relying on self-levelling suspension to take care of the load on the towball can result in expensive repairs to the air compressor and/or airbags. (in older technology suspension vehicles)


ANTI-SWAY EQUIPMENT (I have no comment, generally, on this section, as I have not researched these.)

This is unfortunately another misunderstood piece of equipment. Anti-sway equipment has nothing to do with a weight distributing hitch (WDH) although some believe that a WDH cures sway or instability. This could be true if sway was caused by the tow vehicle going along with a nose-up attitude. But when a trailer wags its tail when being passed by a large truck or a strong gust of wind then something other than a WDH may be required.

It should be stressed that anti-sway equipment should not be added to a rig that behaves in an unstable manner most of the time or when going a bit faster than normal. The first step in these situations is to find the basic cause. This could be incorrect loading, wrong type of towing equipment, incompatible outfit or adopting the wrong towing skills.

Special anti-sway equipment should be considered as additional safety or insurance. There are three general types. There is a coupling with spring loaded pads that clamp on to the towball, a sliding friction device that bolts on to the side of the drawbar and attaches to the ball mount and a ‘dual-cam’ anti-sway unit that is used in conjunction with a Hayman Reese weight distributing hitch. The latter has a useful self-centring function which not only prevents sideways movement, it also brings the trailer back to a straight ahead position.
The Alko 3000 stabilisers have a mechanism that allows the coupling to tightly grip the towball and reduce swaying tendencies.
A friction sway control can be added to most outfits
A dual cam sway control has a self-centering action that helps stability.


SUMMARY

There is really no substitute for having the right towing equipment. Apart from making sure that the car and van stay together, it also reduces the stresses that can be associated with towing. Any well set-up car-trailer combination will tow in a stable manner without causing any concerns. But sadly there are many excellent caravans being towed by equally excellent towing vehicles that are an accident waiting to happen due to the lack of the right towing equipment. (Agreed)

Having the right towbar, weight distributing hitch (if appropriate) and, if towing a large van, an anti-sway device should be seen as being just as important as settling for a car and van that has appeal. Don’t wait until something goes wrong to make the investment. Do it all to start with and you will be able to handle any situation that may arise and be ready, just-in-case there is something unexpected. (Disagree)


Even a 4WD with a single axle pop-top can become difficult to handle without a weight distributing hitch (if necessary. Likewise a WDH can reduce the stability & longevity of vehicles fitted with DAS).


A small van with a high ball load due to the axle being located towards the rear also needs a weight distributing hitch (only if the load exceeds the max towball load with vehicles fitted with DAS).
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Mate,

I hope that clears the matter up for you :D (me, likewise) :D

Cheers

Best Wishes,

Pedro_The_Swift
30th January 2008, 05:36 PM
"The Alko 3000 stabilisers have a mechanism that allows the coupling to tightly grip the towball and reduce swaying tendencies."

why not just have a square towball??

RonMcGr
30th January 2008, 06:14 PM
I am pretty sure that LR would have done towing tests. I would think that a D3 with air suspension would not require a load distribution system provided that the ball weight does not exceed the manufacturers spec.

If you have a higher ball weight and you need a distribution hitch, I think you are using the wrong tow vehicle.

BigJon,

A Landcruiser with "Air Suspension" USES a WDH!

I have stated the facts and have nothing more so say!
Believe what you like and IF you ever tow a large Van with a D3, let me know so I can stay away :)

RonMcGr
30th January 2008, 06:16 PM
I'm still not convinced Ron. LR have stated twice (in the manual and the bulletin that BigJon mentioned) not to use WDH.

Next time we take the boat out I'm going to leave the springs off.

Mate,

With a Freelander, you will never have to worry about towing a Caravan :D:D:D:D:D

BigJon
30th January 2008, 06:23 PM
BigJon,

A Landcruiser with "Air Suspension" USES a WDH!

I have stated the facts and have nothing more so say!
Believe what you like and IF you ever tow a large Van with a D3, let me know so I can stay away :)

I am not sure how a Land Cruiser comparison has any bearing whatsoever on a question regarding Land Rovers. In case you haven't noticed, the two vehicles are made by different companies, in different countries, using different suspension systems on different chassis... Incidentally, what Land Cruiser has air suspension?

I too have stated facts. LR state not to use WDH with air suspended Disco 3. I believe that because it is a FACT.

Don't worry about me towing any caravan at all, I am nowhere near old enough for that malarkey :p:p. I do tow my 8x5 tandem trailer without a WDH behind my Classic RR and it tows beautifully - I also have the trailer / hitch height set up so it is all level.

BigJon
30th January 2008, 06:24 PM
Next time we take the boat out I'm going to leave the springs off.

Must be a flash boat if it has springs :D:p oh.. you mean for the trailer :angel:.

RonMcGr
30th January 2008, 06:28 PM
OOPS! I forgot a very important factor.

Was this bulletin issued by Land Rover in the UK?
If so, caravans over there are very light on the tow bar!
Not to mention the light weight of the Vans themselves.

Those vans fall to bits on our horrid roads.

If the bulletin came from Land Rover AU, they are stark raving mad and have never trialled a D3 with an AUSSIE Caravan..

BigJon
30th January 2008, 07:22 PM
I believe it was Australian in origin, but I will have to find out so don't quote me on that.

sniegy
30th January 2008, 07:45 PM
Hi Jon,
It was an Australian release, not sure if it was SSM or a bulletin but was definately for Aus.

Will agree the D3 does NOT nessitate the use of a WDH, If the trailer is what is recommended & adheres to all the loads & specs, then dont use it as it it not required. Its also stated in the handbook as someone has mentioned.

Just before X-mas i drove a friends D3 with a 3T van behind it (TDV6 HSE) & it was remarkable, The van was there but the vehicle did not no it.
Admittedly, not my vehicle & i dont normally tow a 3T van, my camper is lighter than that & i still own my D2.

RonMcGr
30th January 2008, 08:01 PM
I do tow my 8x5 tandem trailer without a WDH behind my Classic RR and it tows beautifully - I also have the trailer / hitch height set up so it is all level.

I rest my case!

RonMcGr
30th January 2008, 08:02 PM
Admittedly, not my vehicle & i dont normally tow a 3T van, my camper is lighter than that & i still own my D2.

Another one.... sheesh!!!

Bushwanderer
30th January 2008, 08:04 PM
BigJon,

A Landcruiser with "Air Suspension" USES a WDH!

SNIP:)

Hi Ron,
I'm sorry, but all I can say is "So what!"

Best Wishes,

Bushwanderer
30th January 2008, 08:06 PM
I rest my case!

Hi Ron, I'm glad, because your case fails! :D

Best Wishes,

Bushwanderer
30th January 2008, 08:09 PM
OOPS! I forgot a very important factor.

Was this bulletin issued by Land Rover in the UK?
If so, caravans over there are very light on the tow bar!
Not to mention the light weight of the Vans themselves.

Those vans fall to bits on our horrid roads.

If the bulletin came from Land Rover AU, they are stark raving mad and have never trialled a D3 with an AUSSIE Caravan..

Hi Ron, Where did your expertise with this combination come from?

Best Wishes,

Bushwanderer
30th January 2008, 08:17 PM
Mate,

With a Freelander, you will never have to worry about towing a Caravan :D:D:D:D:D


Hi Ron, Don't be superior. If you have some FACTS, state them.

Best Wishes,

peterpam
30th January 2008, 08:28 PM
Hi guys,

I 'm the preson resposible for this most interesting discussion and I thank you all for your input and hope it continues. I tend to agree with the article by the "Man who knows about towing" from my own extensive previous experience in towing with other vehicles. I have been towing my 3 tonne caravan with a Haymen Reese WDH over the short time I've owned my new Discovery 3 without realising Landrover say no to doing that. I have since contacted the dealer in Wodonga who in turn contacted LR and their position is not to use a WDH because of their towbar (ie the bit that initially attaches to the car) but that they are working on it. So they do recognise a problem. When I broached the issue of safety and insurance there was no satisfactory answer so I have been given a number to phone at LR Australia which I will do tomorrow. I will report the outcome on this forum but expect the same answer from LR as is in their manual, which ofcourse does not fix the safety issue of having a vehicle that is quite unsafe due to the weight being mainly on the rear wheels and not distributed evenly over the whole car. This may be fine until something goes wrong.

Tote
30th January 2008, 09:53 PM
My 2c comes from a different perspective, the 3 point linkage system on a tractor and more specifically the draft control.
Massey Ferguson invented this system and it basically consists of two lower arms which act as a tow and pivot point and a top arm which is attached to the tractor to allow it to lift an implement.
When you are ploughing there is a ram which can move the top link in and out to allow changes in weight transfer between the plough and the tractor and exert maximum control over the depth of the implement.
A weight distribution hitch works in much the same way, it uses the towbar as a pivot point and moves the centre of weight distribution forward from the towball towards the centre of the vehicle. This means that the load centre behaves more like a 5th wheel trailer where the weight of the trailer is evenly distributed across the wheels on the towing vehicle as well as the trailer.
A D3's air suspension would compensate for the weight on the towball by increasing the pressure in the rear suspension and would make the trailer level. This would not transfer any of that weight forward on to the front wheels however and would not be as effective in making the rig stable as a weight distributing hitch.
Are some large caravans designed to have a load distributing hitch fitted and hence have higher towball weights than say a car trailer of the same size?

Regards,
Tote

Graeme
30th January 2008, 10:38 PM
Whilst my experiences are not with a D3 nor any other air-suspensioned vehicle, I can certainly vouch for the stability advantage of using a WDH whilst towing a horse float that could rock the back of the vehicle and change the effective weight on the tow-ball and rear suspension. Without the WDH the rear-end would rise and fall on undulating roads, whereas with the WDH the car and float drove as a single unit, without feeling like an articulated vehicle at all. It made for a much more stable combination when travelling at faster speeds, even on smooth roads without undulations.

Jamo
31st January 2008, 12:45 AM
What gets me is that only those who have first hand knowledge of Defenders, Series vehicles, D1's & D2's tend to post technical things about those vehicles.

But everyone who doesn't own one (LR techs aside) is an expert on the D3.:confused: What gives?

djhampson
31st January 2008, 12:58 AM
Mate,

With a Freelander, you will never have to worry about towing a Caravan :D:D:D:D:D

400nM of torque, 2t towing capacity. She'll tow just fine when I get around to putting a towbar on it. Besides I'm a bit young for a caravan.

RonMcGr
31st January 2008, 07:58 AM
Hi guys,

I 'm the preson resposible for this most interesting discussion and I thank you all for your input and hope it continues. I tend to agree with the article by the "Man who knows about towing" from my own extensive previous experience in towing with other vehicles. I have been towing my 3 tonne caravan with a Haymen Reese WDH over the short time I've owned my new Discovery 3 without realising Landrover say no to doing that. I have since contacted the dealer in Wodonga who in turn contacted LR and their position is not to use a WDH because of their towbar (ie the bit that initially attaches to the car) but that they are working on it. So they do recognise a problem. When I broached the issue of safety and insurance there was no satisfactory answer so I have been given a number to phone at LR Australia which I will do tomorrow. I will report the outcome on this forum but expect the same answer from LR as is in their manual, which ofcourse does not fix the safety issue of having a vehicle that is quite unsafe due to the weight being mainly on the rear wheels and not distributed evenly over the whole car. This may be fine until something goes wrong.

I think I know the reason.
BMW AWD have the same problem.
The spare wheel on a BMW is in the centre, underneath the vehicle. The tow bar has no lateral support, i.e. A steel support running under the vehicle to stop up and down movement.

This is from my Caravan Forum:
(From a Caravan Park Owner)
Tonight we have a customer who is very concerned about his BMW X3 and the HR tow bar. He is driving a 2006 BMW X3 that has been fitted (by BMW) a HR tow bar. He is towing a 16 ft Regal single axle caravan that weighs 1650 Kg and has a ball weight of 148 Kg.
He was on his maiden trip from Victoria to Queensland and when up in the sunny place noticed that the towbar was squeaking as it rubbed against the bumper. Closer investigation showed that the twobar had failed and the mounting had cracked on both sides. The towbar was replaced under warrenty. On the return he was not sure if the new one would be any better so for some of the trip removed the WDH bars. At Moree today he decided to fit the WDH bars so the handling would improve, however when fitting them noticed just how much the new tow bar flexes when the WDH is connected.

Before purchasing the car he had the saleman come to his house and showed him the van and its weights so that he could be assured that he had a tug that was fit for the purpose. Needless to say he is currently NOT HAPPY.

My own observations are

That based on other towbar mounting systems the two bolts on either side that attach the bar to the ends of the chassie rails seem to be way under engineered.

The cracks that have appeared in the first tow bar have been caused by the twisting from the WDH as they are on the bottom of the mount.

The second bar that is now fitted has started to bend at the bottom just like the first bar after only about 500 Km.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The easiest solution is to put the spare back on the door and fit a decent tow bar.

Cheers

RonMcGr
31st January 2008, 08:05 AM
Hi Ron, Don't be superior. If you have some FACTS, state them.

Best Wishes,

Nothing "Superior" about it at all, Peter.
FWIW, here are the facts on the entry level Freelander.

Freelander, 1,951cc, 82 kW (4000 rpm), 260 Nm (1750 rpm), weight 1555kg, towing weight 2 Tonne!!!!

In your dreams! Maybe down hill with a tail wind :D

More suited to a 6x4 trailer, in Australia!

RonMcGr
31st January 2008, 08:07 AM
400nM of torque, 2t towing capacity. She'll tow just fine when I get around to putting a towbar on it. Besides I'm a bit young for a caravan.

400nM of torque????

What did you put in it?
A V8?

djhampson
31st January 2008, 09:07 AM
400nM of torque????

What did you put in it?
A V8?

Nothing - Land Rover AU - Engines and Performance (http://www.landrover.com.au/au/en/Vehicles/Freelander2_new/Specifications/Freelander_performance.htm)


Nothing "Superior" about it at all, Peter.
FWIW, here are the facts on the entry level Freelander.

Freelander, 1,951cc, 82 kW (4000 rpm), 260 Nm (1750 rpm), weight 1555kg, towing weight 2 Tonne!!!!

In your dreams! Maybe down hill with a tail wind :D

More suited to a 6x4 trailer, in Australia!

Thats the old Freelander 1 and I might add the smallest engine you could get in it. There was a Td4 and a V6 Petrol available with better power than the 1.8L Petrol.

RonMcGr
31st January 2008, 10:03 AM
Nothing - Land Rover AU - Engines and Performance (http://www.landrover.com.au/au/en/Vehicles/Freelander2_new/Specifications/Freelander_performance.htm)



Thats the old Freelander 1 and I might add the smallest engine you could get in it. There was a Td4 and a V6 Petrol available with better power than the 1.8L Petrol.

Obviously you have the diesel.
There is no mention of Hi - Low range!
I guess that is why it has 6 gears?

I read an article that says it was build on the Ford Mondeo platform, that would explain the east west motor.

Jaguar built the X-Type from the same thing, it is also 4WD, 60/40 % front to rear power loading.

Obviously LR built the Freelander to compete with, Rav4, CRV, etc.

Cheers

gghaggis
31st January 2008, 10:35 AM
Ron,

Well I have a D3 air, and tow a caravan. The manual, LRA (I rang them) and the dealers ALL state NOT to use WDH with this vehicle. The Electronic Suspension Module re-programs itself when it detects a trailer/caravan attached. The WDH would work against the ECM in attempting to control the vehicle combination. As long as you keep within the weight/ball limits of the car, you should never need WDH.

I pulled 1.5 tonnes across the Docker River Rd, at speeds up to 110 kph (we were in a hurry - Laverton to Ayers Rock in 15 hrs!) over some pretty hard, corrugated dirt roads. The ECM controlled the van, even to the point of cutting power and redistributing drive to stop yawing, when I temporarily lost control around a bend. You cannot compare any other "air" system to that used in the D3/RRS, and unless you've actually driven one in these conditions, you have no idea what they do.

And personally, I've never had a problem with the tow hitch - it hangs a little low, but other than that?

Cheers,

Gordon

BigJon
31st January 2008, 10:49 AM
I rest my case!

I am not sure what that is in reference to. Could you please expand?

BigJon
31st January 2008, 10:54 AM
What gets me is that only those who have first hand knowledge of Defenders, Series vehicles, D1's & D2's tend to post technical things about those vehicles.

But everyone who doesn't own one (LR techs aside) is an expert on the D3.:confused: What gives?

I hope I count as an LR tech. :p

RonMcGr
31st January 2008, 11:48 AM
Ron,

Well I have a D3 air, and tow a caravan. The manual, LRA (I rang them) and the dealers ALL state NOT to use WDH with this vehicle. The Electronic Suspension Module re-programs itself when it detects a trailer/caravan attached. The WDH would work against the ECM in attempting to control the vehicle combination. As long as you keep within the weight/ball limits of the car, you should never need WDH.

I pulled 1.5 tonnes across the Docker River Rd, at speeds up to 110 kph (we were in a hurry - Laverton to Ayers Rock in 15 hrs!) over some pretty hard, corrugated dirt roads. The ECM controlled the van, even to the point of cutting power and redistributing drive to stop yawing, when I temporarily lost control around a bend. You cannot compare any other "air" system to that used in the D3/RRS, and unless you've actually driven one in these conditions, you have no idea what they do.

And personally, I've never had a problem with the tow hitch - it hangs a little low, but other than that?

Cheers,

Gordon

Gordon,

Good to hear from some one who has one and towed a Caravan.
If it hangs a little low, that just goes to show the system was designed for UK and Euro vans.:)

Good luck and I hope you don't have problems with it.

gghaggis
31st January 2008, 12:00 PM
Gordon,

Good to hear from some one who has one and towed a Caravan.
If it hangs a little low, that just goes to show the system was designed for UK and Euro vans.:)

Good luck and I hope you don't have problems with it.

Sorry, should have been more specific. The van (and the actual tregg hitch) don't hang low. It's just the lowest point of the attached arm that's a little close to the ground for real off-road work. But seems to be fine for gravel roads and above.

Cheers,

Gordon

BigJon
31st January 2008, 12:05 PM
.
If it hangs a little low, that just goes to show the system was designed for UK and Euro vans.:)
.

The Australian spec tow hitch is different to the UK / Europe one and is, I believe, unique to our country.

It complies with the ADRs pertaining to tow hitch height.

RonMcGr
31st January 2008, 12:07 PM
Here is an interesting article.
Tow Test: Part 1 - Large Wagons - Vehicle Tests - Overlander 4WD Magazine - Australia's leading four wheel drive magazine (http://www.overlander.com.au/vehicle_tests/index/2/289/Tow-Test:-Part-1---Large-Wagons)

The team at Jayco Sydney weighed in with two 'tow masses'. For the larger 4WDs, a 2050kg dual-axle Jayco Sterling (and a Hayman Reece hitch) came our way.

<snip>

The Hayman Reece hitch used for this test required a few minutes work with a grinder to fit the Disco, something to remember with new or borrowed hardware. The rear parking sensors seemed smart enough to work around the hitch and the mirrors dip when in reverse gear; a pain in the **** with a van or boat. Like the Patrol, the mirrors aren't quite large enough to allow complete vision of the van without craning your neck.

The performance
The diesel Disco was the first tested and immediately scored a big gold star due to the electric handbrake's ability to be 'driven over', eliminating any chance of rollback on steep starts. Typically diesel it was lazy out of the hole but after maybe one car length and 6kph the Disco oiler really gets on with the task at hand.

Evident within the first few kilometres was a quiet, cushion-soft ride and steering that offers the usually conflicting qualities of light control and plenty of feel. Unfortunately, also evident was a nervous gait that had me dropping the nose of the van just six kays up the road. With the hitch dropped two holes, it still wagged during another dozen kilometres of freeway; I lifted the chains one link each side.

Whoa, it made a hell of a difference. No more wiggle. It seems the Disco - due, no doubt, to its auto-levelling suspension - is very sensitive to ride height and load-distributing chain tension. Sorted, 100kph cruising was a doddle and it was difficult not to creep up to 110 where the Disco diesel, in fact, felt happier.

<snip>

The verdict
From the intelligence of its removable tow bar to its relaxed freeway cruising to exemplary rough-road behaviour - once the rig is set up right - both Discos stood hat, head, shoulders and chest above any other vehicle on test. The 4.4-litre petrol V8 was quicker than the two Japanese biggies and would possibly use less fuel when driven more gently. But the Disco diesel almost matched the Toyota and Nissan petrols for grunt - and their diesels for frugality - with far better towing ability. Combine that with a cavernous and versatile interior and the diesel Disco - here we go again - stacks up as the best on the planet.

BigJon
31st January 2008, 12:08 PM
I guess that is why it has 6 gears?


Obviously LR built the Freelander to compete with, Rav4, CRV, etc.



The Disco 3 has six forward gears in either auto or manual form and that has a transfer case with low range.

In Australia, the Freelander does not compete with Rav4, CRV, Xtrail, etc. It is at a much higher price point and is much better equipped. Not to mention vastly superior off road and available with a diesel.

Perhaps in Europe they are closer to being competitors.

peterpam
31st January 2008, 05:23 PM
I read this article online and it's the reason I first looked at the Discovery 3 and eventually bought one. I spoke to LR today and as expected they don't recommend a WDH to be used. They could not give me a reason why which is quite dissapointing. I will try towing without the hitch but suspect I will be using pretty soon after that again.
Peter

Pedro_The_Swift
31st January 2008, 05:33 PM
from a different angle Peterpam--

The makers of 3tonne vans are more interested in the interior rather than the front/rear weights overs the axels,, thats YOUR problem.

Jamo
31st January 2008, 06:45 PM
What Pedro said!
If the van has a weight distribution problem, then I'd get rid of it.

(Sorry BigJon, I should have said LR dudes ;).)

Ron, every post you make reveals just how much you know about the D3. :Thump:

RonMcGr
31st January 2008, 07:27 PM
Ron, every post you make reveals just how much you know about the D3. :Thump:

No worries, Peter has decided what to do, so all you "experts" can now rest...:mad:

Redback
1st February 2008, 09:23 AM
Personally i'd be listening to the owners of a D3 with air/active suspension, my experience is only with a D2 no air, so i won't comment on how mine tows to try and compare it to a D3.

We have 2 D3s non air models here at work, that tow sweepers on tandum axle trailers, all up there weight is around 2.5t with 4 men in the car, so about 2.9t, they both have the standard LR tow hitch, the guys have never mentioned anything negitive about them, the 3rd vehicle that tows a sweeper, the Patrol, is, and i quote the driver "***king frightening"

Trying it first without the WDH is a good idea, may save you un-nessesary $ if it's OK.

As for the articals on the benifits of using WDHs, all good info, but i suspect written for the older suspensioned vehicles.

OH and i too would like to know what Landcruiser has air suspension:confused:

Baz.

RonMcGr
1st February 2008, 09:58 AM
OH and i too would like to know what Landcruiser has air suspension:confused:

Baz.

They don't, I remembered a mate who used to tow a heavy car trailer with vintage Jaguar on the back. The vehicle used to rise when he started it, and last seen he had a LC Sahara TD. However, the first one (that rose) was a then new, Range Rover and he flogged it for the Sahara. It was apparently a thirsty, unreliable POS!

stevo68
1st February 2008, 11:09 AM
They don't, I remembered a mate who used to tow a heavy car trailer with vintage Jaguar on the back. The vehicle used to rise when he started it, and last seen he had a LC Sahara TD. However, the first one (that rose) was a then new, Range Rover and he flogged it for the Sahara. It was apparently a thirsty, unreliable POS! Man, I have to bite now. I have read through this thread and found it interesting as I know nothing about caravans etc. Ron, mate, you have littered the thread with many :mad:, a few there ya go "in ya face" type comments and on every occasion you have been wrong. Page 2 of the thread you made comment about a Land Cruiser with Air Suspension....Page 6, it seems it may have been a RR. You say a FL can't tow to save its life, wouldnt have the power, then knocked for six at the torque of the new ones. The experts who own D3's or service them/ techo's are saying one doesnt use a WDH ( learnt something there), yet you are battling these people the whole way through...cause you MUST BE RIGHT. :angel:

You seem like nice enough fella but know when to let go and move along, especially when it comes to technical issues in relation to my vehicle, I want to hear from people who know.....not think they know,

Regards

Stevo

PCH
1st February 2008, 01:09 PM
Heh I tow a 2t van which has a load distribution with 10% nose weight and the air suspension does a beautiful job in keeping all things level and under control.

I'll never be going against what LR state with WDH's on a D3.

Chris

djhampson
1st February 2008, 01:35 PM
I was doing some reading at lunchtime and came across this statement on the Driving Technology (http://www.landrover.com.au/au/en/Vehicles/Discovery/Discovery_driving_technology.htm) page for the D3 - click on the words air suspension and this pops up.


Four-corner, electronic air suspension ensures a smooth, constant ride height irrespective of load, number of passengers or weight of luggage. The air springs are computer controlled, giving automatically softer or firmer springing depending on road or track conditions. And because they are cross-linked, they allow extreme axle articulation over rocks or deep ruts.

A further bonus is that the ride height can also be manually selected – offering, for instance, the ability to lower the vehicle by 55mm to make it easier to get in and out of and to load.


It says that the suspension is cross-linked, does this mean that if the right rear wheel is pushed up, the air is forced into the front left airbag forcing it down?

So if you put a trailer on the back of the D3 the rear wheels will be forced up and the front wheels forced downwards - effectively doing what the WDH \ springs do?

Is my logic right?

Alternatively is the suspension only electronically cross linked i.e the computer detects a change in the level of the car and compensates accordingly?

RonMcGr
1st February 2008, 02:37 PM
Man, I have to bite now. I have read through this thread and found it interesting as I know nothing about caravans etc. Ron, mate, you have littered the thread with many :mad:, a few there ya go "in ya face" type comments and on every occasion you have been wrong. Page 2 of the thread you made comment about a Land Cruiser with Air Suspension....Page 6, it seems it may have been a RR. You say a FL can't tow to save its life, wouldnt have the power, then knocked for six at the torque of the new ones. The experts who own D3's or service them/ techo's are saying one doesnt use a WDH ( learnt something there), yet you are battling these people the whole way through...cause you MUST BE RIGHT. :angel:

You seem like nice enough fella but know when to let go and move along, especially when it comes to technical issues in relation to my vehicle, I want to hear from people who know.....not think they know,

Regards

Stevo

Stevo,

Don't worry too much :)
Caravanning and towing I do know about. D3's no.
Freelanders, only the older ones and have not followed the newer ones, so No. It was a surprise!!
Air bag LC, yes, it was an Airbag RR. Confussing, yes.
PTSD, anti-drepessants and Forums can be a bit much at times, but I'm happy and I'll unreservedly "Let Go" of everything, D3 :D

The Towing test was done with a WDH.

I have communicated with Peter, off line. He is happy and therefore, so am I.

I bought a Discovery to tow a caravan, I'm still improving on it, to do it better. In the mean time, I do NOT want to see people have accidents towing a caravan from advice that maybe true from a Land Rover angle, but outright dangerous from a towing angle.

Cheers,

Bushwanderer
1st February 2008, 03:16 PM
Stevo,

Don't worry too much :)
Caravanning and towing I do know about. D3's no.
Freelanders, only the older ones and have not followed the newer ones, so No. It was a surprise!!
Air bag LC, yes, it was an Airbag RR. Confussing, yes.
PTSD, anti-drepessants and Forums can be a bit much at times, but I'm happy and I'll unreservedly "Let Go" of everything, D3 :D

The Towing test was done with a WDH.

I have communicated with Peter, off line. He is happy and therefore, so am I.

I bought a Discovery to tow a caravan, I'm still improving on it, to do it better. In the mean time, I do NOT want to see people have accidents towing a caravan from advice that maybe true from a Land Rover angle, but outright dangerous from a towing angle.

Cheers,

Nice work Stevo & RonMcG.

Best Wishes,

gghaggis
1st February 2008, 03:32 PM
I bought a Discovery to tow a caravan, I'm still improving on it, to do it better. In the mean time, I do NOT want to see people have accidents towing a caravan from advice that maybe true from a Land Rover angle, but outright dangerous from a towing angle.
Without trying to inflame the situation any further .......... :angel:

I appreciate that you're trying to share the knowledge you've gathered via your D2. But you do know that this is an area for comment on D3s, right? Providing what might well be sanguine advice on how to tow caravans with 'Cruisers, D2s, Freelanders, Rangies is just not applicable in this case.

Unfortunately, I just cannot see how anything you've posted is even relevant to an air-equipped D3, let alone showing it "... outright dangerous from a towing angle." - which smacks of scare-mongering.

The specifics of towing a caravan behind these cars are quite different (as we who have done it are trying to point out to you). Using WDH attachments will only confuse the car's control module, possibly leading to exactly what you are trying to avoid - an unsafe towing environment.

Like off-roading in these things, it's a whole new ball-game. You'd be surprised how many 'old tricks' old-hand 4WDers have to unlearn when taking the D3/RRS cars offroad. In some ways, this is similar.

Cheers,

Gordon

BigJon
1st February 2008, 03:53 PM
It says that the suspension is cross-linked, does this mean that if the right rear wheel is pushed up, the air is forced into the front left airbag forcing it down?

The crosslinking occurs when in low range only.

It allows air to travel from the rear air bags side to side and the front air bags side to side.

There is no fore / aft linking.

What this emulates is the action of a live axle when articulating, ie as one wheel is forced upwards the other one in the axle set is forced downwards. This gives better suspension articulation.

In high range there is no cross linking, so full independent suspension is retained (aside from swaybar action).

I hope this clears it up :p.

RonMcGr
1st February 2008, 03:54 PM
Gordon,

I give up!
I am no longer going to reply to anything on this thread.

This is far too confusing, because everyone said "It's a D3" and they are different.

Sorry, I don't care whether the suspension is solid rubber, leaf springs, coil spring, hydraulic or air sprung. It is TOTALLY irellevent..

If anyone is genuinely interested in the weight and balance required for towing, please PM me.

I'll try to draw up a diagram of the weight/balance issue and how to compensate.

Goodbye, Weight Distribtution Bars on Disco 3, thread.

Steve Jillett
1st February 2008, 04:14 PM
Good afternoon all,

I would like to add my experience with towing with a D3. Whilst I don't tow a caravan, I do tow a 1900kg boat. It is a tandem trailer so does tow better than a single axle. Our TDV6 D3 just towed the boat from Sale in Vic to Kangaroo Island and back again. We did approx 4000 km over Chrissy. I don't have a WDH and the boat towed beautifully. We towed over a variety of terrains and speeds up to 110 kmh and never had any issues. I used to tow the boat with a Prado, which was vastly different. I should have used a WDH system with the Prado but I knew I was getting the D3 so didn't bother. Again I am not sure if boats and caravans tow similarly but our boat is rather large I would assume has similar dimensions to your larger style caravan.
Cheers
Steve

djhampson
1st February 2008, 10:31 PM
The crosslinking occurs when in low range only.

It allows air to travel from the rear air bags side to side and the front air bags side to side.

There is no fore / aft linking.

What this emulates is the action of a live axle when articulating, ie as one wheel is forced upwards the other one in the axle set is forced downwards. This gives better suspension articulation.

In high range there is no cross linking, so full independent suspension is retained (aside from swaybar action).

I hope this clears it up :p.

Cool Thanks! Looks like I got it all wrong :) Nice to know another reason for putting the D3 in low range too.

gghaggis
2nd February 2008, 02:58 AM
Oops - see next post

gghaggis
2nd February 2008, 02:59 AM
Sorry, I don't care whether the suspension is solid rubber, leaf springs, coil spring, hydraulic or air sprung. It is TOTALLY irellevent..

If anyone is genuinely interested in the weight and balance required for towing, please PM me.

:mad: And if anyone is interested in knowing why Ron is only partially right, and how it affects a vehicle with an active suspension system, then just PM me and I'll try not to bore you with diagrams and such.

Cheers,

Gordon

Pedro_The_Swift
2nd February 2008, 08:20 AM
:lol2::lol2:

feral
2nd February 2008, 09:32 AM
Oh dear and another WDH thread turns ugly :o:o:o

As a owner of a smallish van and a member of various caravan forums I have read and contributed to heaps of WDH discussions and eventually all of these end in tears:BigCry:

Why?

I find it amazing that the pro WDH give the impression that it is the be all and end all of towing problems. It's not. I have seen many a picture of upside down vans and vehicles WITH WDH so that suggests to me that there are other forces at play. And the logical reality is that there are too many variables like how the rig is packed, tyre pressures, wind speed, contour of road, weather..ect, all of which contribute to the safe towing of vans and boats.

As for towing with a D3....new technology, new thought processess, new way of doing things. I would wait until more evidence was presented before I make a decision on a WDH.

discomaniac
16th February 2008, 03:48 PM
Hi All,
Seems that most comments here come from people that don't even drive a D3. I drive a D3 SE TDV6 and tow a caravan without WDH. Tows beautifully, Level, no swaying, all good. First hand experience.
WDH - don't need them on a D3 :cool:

Discomaniac

peterpam
17th February 2008, 05:48 PM
Hi guys,

I started this discussion some time ago and my advice from Land Rover was definitely no WDH. This went against all I had been taught over the years but I decided to try towing the 3 tonne caravan with no WDH. Like the previous writer it towed beautifully and handled exceptionally well. The car and van was level when connected and engine running. We did freeway as well as country roads and hills etc. So my final word on this is take the advice of Land Rover and don't use the WDH. However, I think it would be a different story if you have the S model as I understand they have springs where as the SE and HSE have the air suspension. No matter what, these vehicles are the best towing vehicles I've ever driven. I feel very safe in them.

Peter

MarknDeb
3rd June 2009, 09:22 PM
Gday Peterpam, in regard to the discussion RE the WDH on a D3, i do know of 2 people that towed heavey offroad caravans with D3's and used the WDH, it resulted in the locking pin snappings while driving and the caravans parted company with the cars, it was found the upward force generated from the WDH was the cause for this pin to snap. one car was a coil sprung and the other is air system, the coil one i do know they had the Hayman Reece bar fitted and use the WDH comfortably, the air system car i can not answer as we have not seen them for some time at any gatherings

rmp
3rd June 2009, 10:05 PM
Rather than repeat everything -- BigJon and GG Haggis are spot on.

As I think GG said the D3 is different. It is not just a case of physics, in which case Ron would be quite correct and a WDH would be fine.

It's all about working with rather than against the computer.

Many rules for cars like the D3 have to be rewritten. This is just one of them. Another is running significantly larger tyres which is dangerous on any vehicle with ESC.

BTW the D4 will have anti-sway control which is a variant of ESC designed to stop trailer sway, working on the front wheels only. Not unique to LR.

Aside from hanging too low the standard towbar also prevents the spare wheel being removed, thereby forcing you to first remove the tongue when changing a wheel. Not great, and another reason everyone is rather keen on the MB hitch.

The crosslink is a superb feature and gives the air D3 a lot, and I mean a lot more travel than the coil D3. It is not linked front/rear like the LC200's KDSS.

CaverD3
4th June 2009, 05:12 AM
When I spoke to head of LR technical he said that the D3 had not been tested with the WDH for compatability with the DSC and other electonics. The D3 detects you have a trailer and changes a lot of the parameters and these settings are for towing without a WDH. There also concerns for long term stress causing failure of the hitch and frame.

Will
4th June 2009, 07:22 AM
Have been away from the laptop for a while and just caught-up with this thread.
We tow a 21' Golf Outback behind our D3 and use the Mitchell Bros tow hitch and do not use WDH. Our van usually come in around 2650kg plus, depending on where we are going and for how long.
At no stage have we had any problems with the D3 or the van with towing. No movement, no swaying even when the biggest B-Doubles pass us. Usually travel at around 95 to 100kmh on good roads.
Last trip, just finished two weeks ago was for two months away, around 5000km.

harlie
4th June 2009, 08:07 AM
Using a WDH on the D3 or RRS will snap the the locking ping OR crack the hitch casting. You will loose the trailer sooner or later if using the factory tow bar & WDH - there are dozens of cases now... If you really want to use WDH then fit one of Reese's tow bars.

Diego Luego
7th June 2009, 09:45 PM
So much heat and so little light! I have patiently waded through all the information and misinformation above and couldn't stand it any more.

There is absolutely no point in WDH for a D3 (with active air) or a RRS, in fact it will probably distort the information sent by the sensors to the management system and make the handling worse.

Despite anything you read about towing heavy weights or with big 4WDs it does not apply to the above. They are different! The vehicle knows when you have a trailer and compensates for it. Keep below 3.5T and 150kg and you will be ok. If you don't, you risk both your vehicle and voiding your warranty.

I have driven the same rig with both a TD5 Defender and a RRS and they really are different! The RRS (and presumably the D3) really does try to stop you getting into trouble.

What applies to a Defender, D2, Landcruiser or a Paj does not apply to a RRS or D3, just remember they are different.

(all this rather reminds me of a guy, years ago, who wanted to put free wheeling hubs on his new Range Rover because everyone said they improved fuel economy)

MarknDeb
7th June 2009, 09:59 PM
What applies to a Defender, D2, Landcruiser or a Paj does not apply to a RRS or D3, just remember they are different.



We have the D2 and when we had the SLS we didnt use the WDH and she towed beautifully, it never felt unsafe at any stage but now we have the coils fitted we use the WDH, the ride towing feals about the same as before.

Desert Traveller
7th June 2009, 11:13 PM
After all these years many people can't understand that LR really changed the 4WD as an offroad vehicle and as a tow vehicle. You cannot compare an air suspended D3 or RRS with anything that has gone previously or any other 4WD on the market.

Pedro_The_Swift
7th June 2009, 11:28 PM
Mate,,
you sound like a happy camper:D

rmp
8th June 2009, 08:43 AM
It's more the electronics than the air suspension. Sophisticated electronics are rewriting what you can, and cannot do with 4WDs.

TDV6
8th June 2009, 07:38 PM
Having previously had a 93LSE (My Baby) with air suspension and a D3 with Air, I defiantly don’t want to go down the path of air is bad lets forgo all its benefits and go to coils.

Air suspension has been around for 15-20years, embrace it; its what makes the D3 great, etc.

Understand what air suspension is, its just another rubber air bag just the same as your tyres, no one wants to go back to solid rubber 1920 style. So air suspension is the next step.

There are ways around air spring problems, just do your homework and find a solution that fits you.

Now to the topic at hand, WDH, do Not, DO NOT, fit a wdt to your D3 or RRS. Your insurance Co will love you if you do, they can wipe any claim you may make, and yes I have made a claim of grater than $100K.

Further I have towed a 3ton van round Oz for 7 months and plan to do so again in the near future without a WDH. The van is a three-ton Kedron ATV tandem axle.

As has been said the D3 /RRS is a different beast to any other LR, and deserves to be treated as such.

This is not to say an anti-sway coupling would not go astray for your particular application, however it was not needed in my case and an anti sway device is not a WDH.

The latest Cvan and Motorhome issue has an article on WDH and ordinary vehicles and, also a D3. The conclusions were a towball weight of from memory 140kg resulted in a 60kg lighter load on the front wheels which still left a weight of grater than 1100kg on the front tyres of a D3, If I remember their conclusion correctly, the D3 SLS took care of everything and a downforce of 1ton plus on each front wheel maintained directional control.

Ryall