How to stabilise a glider trailer

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Glider trailers are generally easy to tow. But, they are long and it doesn't take much faulty loading to make them unstable. Here is a short how-to avoid a bad handling trailer.

Trailer loading scheme
Where to put heavy weight

Weight is your enemy

When loading a trailer weight is your enemy and needs careful attention especially on long trailers. When the trailer starts to swing/oscilate while driving it's the weight that keeps it swinging. More specifically it's the trailers rotational inertia(around the axel) that keeps it swinging and it's the rotation inertia that we need to minimise.

General advice

Apart from the glider itself don't load heavy items in the trailer, especially in the trailers extrem ends: Front and rear. Loading items here will greatly increase the rotational inertia. A common misconception is that loading weight in the front of the trailer will stabilise it, it will do the opposite! make it more unstable.

Stabilise a bad trailer

If your trailer is already unstable on the road start by taking out everything except the glider, bare minimum. The nose weight of the trailer (pressure on the cars hook) should be the lowest of:

1. 5% of the trailers maximum weight
2. The maximum of your cars allowable tow hook weight

Make sure to not deviate too much from this. If your far off this when the trailer only contains the glider, the whole glider inside needs to be moved forward or aft. Do not add weight in the extreme ends of the trailer to achieve correct nose weight. The same can also be achieved by moving the trailer's axel forward or aft on the chassi.
Trailer nose weight
How to measure nose weight with bathroom scale

Make your car tow better

There are a few things you can do to make your car handle towing better.

Increased tire pressure will make the car stiffer and it will withstand swinging forces from the trailer better. Low profile tires (big rims) do the same thing.

Place heavy load between your cars axels. In estate cars the trunk protrudes behind the rear axel and this is generally a bad place to load heavy stuff. Heavy stuff goes in the foot well in the back seat or in the back seats them self. If you tow with a light/small car it's advisable to load some extra weight in the back seat's foot well.

Other resources

Youtube video
Caravan loading

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