Level - level - I want my BT level!

Submitted: Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:14
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Now the proud owner of a Maytow B - which end is up? Where is the lifiting point on each side of the BT? At the Melbourne caravan show yesterday when discussion levelling with Tracy he indicated that instead of raising up one side, he simply eyeballs the situation, moves his BT a few feet, and uses a shovel to move a few inches of topsoil and rolls back into the hole! Seems simple enough - thoughts? tgintl/jay
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Reply By: Bogger John - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:25

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:25
A Maytow jack is useful for determining the towball
weight. It can also be used to measure the weight of each side of the
caravan. These three weights can be added together to get the total weight
of the van. I also use the side weights to guide the stowing of compact
heavy items to help to some extent in equalising the weight on each side of
the van.
To lift one side of the van off the ground to get its weight, put the jack
under the bolt sticking out of the underside of the chassis between the two
wheels. It will be necessary to put a boss or cover over this bolt - I use
one of the metal caps that fits on the top of steel cyclone fence posts.

John
AnswerID: 561850

Reply By: Luvntravln - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:26

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:26
Hi John The cover that you put over the bolt - not being very mechanical, where do you buy it? Hardward store? Setting the Maytow on a block of wood and jacking up that bolt point - that would be the way to level as well!? tgintl/jay
AnswerID: 561851

Reply By: Bogger John - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:27

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:27
Hi Jay,

You should be able to buy these caps at Bunnings. Actually
a stronger cap would be the galvanised cap that screws on to the end of a
galvanised pipe to block it off, again obtainable at Bunnings. Whatever
you get, measure the length of the bolt sticking out and then measure the inside
of the cap to make sure there is clearance and that the weight is taken by the
cap edges on the chassis and not by the bolt. Lifting the van this way to
put levelling blocks under the wheels should not be a problem.

regards,
John
AnswerID: 561852

Reply By: Noosa Fox - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:28

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:28
For those who use the power wheel to move van onto the vehicles tow hitch, if you dig in the wheels on one side then the power wheel WILL NOT be able to move the van out of the hole. Jay, I thought that you were a sailor, how many "level , level I want my van Level" sites did you find on the high seas. Brian
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AnswerID: 561853

Reply By: Deleted User - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:29

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:29
Ah yes, but then his bunk was gimbal mounted! Griff Maties!
AnswerID: 561854

Reply By: Luvntravln - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:30

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:30
Brian, I love your dry sense of humor. I only wish we already had our BT so we could tag a long with you and the Swifts. Also, what does it mean "use the power wheel to move van onto the vehicles tow hitch"? Are you referring to the Jockey Wheel? That 's right Griff, just like having the ultimate coffee maker. It's just another toy to pray that nothing goes wrong with before your replace it with yet another toy ! The bed wasn't gimbled; the whole cabin was!! Cheers, tgintl/jay
AnswerID: 561855

Reply By: Noosa Fox - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:31

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:31
A jockey wheel just holds up the front of the van and will move if you are strong enough to push the van along. A jockey wheel with a lever attachment to it is often called a power wheel and that allows you to move the van by sort of jacking it along. BTi will show you that if the van is parked a short distance behind the tow vehicle, then it is a simple matter to use this power wheel to move the van into the tow hitch and then slip the pin in. Brian
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AnswerID: 561856

Reply By: Deleted User - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:32

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:32
Griff, Apparently even Jay's body was mounted on gimbals when at the helm !!! As gimlet and gimcrack are in the Macquarie I'll leave it to you to fathom (pun intended) which one installs the gimbals .... the other is where the gimbals are mounted. Anthony (Rower 67 on Cleopatra's ship) Explore this Great Land ...Do it Easy ...Tow a Bushtracker
AnswerID: 561857

Reply By: Deleted User - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:33

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:33
Jay/John, I too have a Maytow jack (the larger capacity unit) and the tow ball weight gauge will be handy I'm sure. As has already been said the main place to jack the van is from the location between the wheels however the issue of the protruding centre bolt has to be managed. I achieved this as follows. Create a template of the curvature of the spring on paper or cardboard.; Inscribe this shape on a piece of hard wood.( Size I used is 160mm L x 70mm W x 70mm H , make sure to use timber with no flaws or splits) On 70mm face to be shaped drill a 20mm hole in the centre about 15-20mm deep (to accommodate centre bolt) On opposite face drill a 30mm hole about 6mm deep to accommodate head of jack( I glued a steel washer to bottom of this hole so that head is bearing on a steel surface. Not sure whether this is necessary but it works for me) Using planer/belt sander create shape to inscribed outline; Finish block in oil to help prevent cracking. I made 2 and keep one as a spare just in case. As an aside the first block I made I deliberately offset the centre bolt hole to one side of centre, this made the block sit at an angle to the hrozontal. When jacking using this block the wheel closest to the lower end of the block always lifted from the ground first. By rotating the block180 degrees the other wheel lifted first. The only odd thing with this was I was jacking with the block at a slight angle to start with and I was not sure whether this would place unnecessary strain on the timber block so I discarded that idea. This may be of some use to those who are experiencing the same problems. When I get my digital camera fixed I will post some photos if anyone is interested. regards, Bill.
AnswerID: 561858

Reply By: Luvntravln - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:34

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:34
Just so that someone can say "no way, Jose" , is there any reason why, if you set the Maytow B on a 6, 9, or 12" square block of wood, or perhaps a rectangle that is sufficiently wide and slips between the two wheels, you can't put the head of the jack next to the center bolt against the leaf springs? Do you have to hit it spot on? As I understand it, if you are lifting only one wheel to change a wheel or some other work, you put the head of the jack forward of or the the rear of the wheel you want to lift. Of course, chocking the opposite side. I have now hijacked my own thread from level level to jack up jack up . tgintl/jay
AnswerID: 561859

Reply By: Deleted User - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:35

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:35
Jay, You can lift beside the spring pack bolt but it can be dangerous. If the jack is not absolutely perpendicular to the spring surface it will slide out with obvious consequences. The metal to metal contact makes it lose grip easily. Placing a piece of hard rubber will help but it is not ideal ... 3000 odd kgs even falling 4 inches suddenly, will severe fingers, cause head lumps etc !!! The adapter stops the jack from sliding as well as protect the bolt and keeps the lift perfectly central. I'll fabricate you an adapter as an early x-mas present .... can you measure the distance across the jack pad on top of the jack. Regards Anthony Explore this Great Land ...Do it Easy ...Tow a Bushtracker
AnswerID: 561860

Reply By: Noosa Fox - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:36

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:36
What I cannot understand about all this talk about jacking up the wheels using a "Maytow", is how is this jack any better than the jack that Landcruisers come with, or the even heavier duty jack that comes with the F250. The only thing that I see that the Maytow can do that the vehicle jacks cannot, is give a weight reading. Am I correct or not? My F250 jack is capable of lifting either or both wheels at once depending on where it is placed. Brian
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AnswerID: 561861

Reply By: Deleted User - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:37

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:37
Your spot on there Brian but ....... there is always a but ....[wink] The jacks are used for levelling van (not changing wheels per se) and as such I didnt want to leave the F250 jack out exposed to the elements (shaft corrosion kills seals) for a week or so .... I bought a cheapy from AutoStore for $50 and use that to save F250 for real jacking !!! [smile] It gives a spare as well !! Jay (I imagine) bought the Maytow to give a spare to level BT and to do ballweight at the same time whilst keeping the F250 one for changing wheels etc. Anthony Explore this Great Land ... Do it Easy ... Tow a Bushtracker
AnswerID: 561862

Reply By: Luvntravln - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:38

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:38
Correct! The Maytow does both the lifting and the weighing. Since I know I am going to be close to max, I want to know my limits and the only way to insure that I do not go over the magic 3500kg and that my ball weight is at 350kg is to have a jack that does the weighing. Anthony, thanx - the jack pad diameter is 3mm. Cheers, tgintl/jay
AnswerID: 561863

Reply By: Deleted User - Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:39

Thursday, Apr 01, 2004 at 19:39
Ah yes !! An American and a metric tape is a dangerous thing !!! [wink] Jay, 3mm ..... is that supposed to be 3cm, 30mm, 30,000 Microns, .00003 kilometres, .03 Metres, 30,000,000 NanoMetres [smile] Anthony Explore this Great Land ...Do it Easy ...Tow a Bushtracker
AnswerID: 561864

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