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Post Info TOPIC: Automated Safety Hitch System Review

RV-Dreams Family Member

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Posts: 29
Automated Safety Hitch System Review

Here is the link for my review on the ASHS:

The Potential of Integrated Trailer Safety
With the Automated Safety Hitch System


Dave and Amy ~ Owners of a Heartland Cyclone 4012 Toy Hauler 

RV-Dreams Family Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 5048

Let me duplicate my comments from your posting of the review at the "Hauler Bed" thread in the "Tow Vehicles" category of the forums.


I've read your article, and I must say that for the most part, it was well written.  However, I now have questions that still leave me hesitant to endorse such a product as the ASHS.

Regardless of what the ASHS is supposed to do, it is still going to be additional weight that the tow vehicle is going to have to pull.  While your article listed the "capacities" of the ASHS, it didn't specify what the ASHS system, including the hitch system that goes on the truck, is going to weigh.  Without knowing more of how the hitch system attaches and the dynamics of that "hook-up," I wonder about how the tow vehicle is going to handle the extra weight.

When I went to look at a brochure for my truck, it has a "towing weight" for conventional towing of 16,000 lbs.  By comparison, the "towing weight" for fifth wheel towing is 24,600 lbs for my 2008 Ford F450.  That is a bit over 8,000 lbs difference between conventional versus fifth wheel towing, and one would be adding the extra weight of the ASHS, so the actual "towing weight" of conventional towing would be even less..  Plus,  I'm concerned that adding extra weight to a smaller truck might be a bit much to feel safe with.

Your article also stated that the towing capacity and braking capacity would both be increased by 50% with the use of the ASHS device.  I'm really curious as to how the addition of only two extra wheels and their brakes can increase the braking capacity by that much.  Plus, since I firmly believe in NOT going by a manufacturer's "published" towing weights instead of GAWR and GCVW, adding 50% to towing weight almost just sounds like hype from the manufacturer.

Then in my estimation, the idea of spending $10,000 to $11,000 to the cost of one's RV rig doesn't seem logical, especially when one could apply that money to buying a better and safer handling truck or a trailer with much better brakes of its own.



Terry and Jo

2010 Mobile Suites 38TKSB3
2008 Ford F450
2014 Ford Expedition 4X4 as Tag-along or Scout

Two minor works in progess....pictures taken over the years and a webblog:

Our photos on Smugmug

Ignoring the Barking Dogs  -  Terry's Blog

RV-Dreams Family Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 29

Likewise, I post part of my PM comment to you here:

"As far as the 50% issue, I recommend you call Joe. He has a very good explanation. I heard it and with his educational and work experience, I have no doubt he is correct. I just don’t know how to adequately put it into understandable words. However, from what I’ve learned, the two most limiting factors in a tow vehicle are the axle springs and the brakes. The Automated Safety Hitch System overcomes that limitation. Reading my article 'A Lesson on Gross Combined Weight Rating' may help."

Beyond what I stated above, the next limiting factor one would consider is the rear end gear ratio. I did say in the article:

"I do think one would have to use some common sense and consider the capability of the tow vehicle’s powertrain, especially when considering the number of times an RVer may be towing up steep inclines. Typically, when towing any fifth wheel or heavy gooseneck trailer, a diesel engine vehicle with a towing package is first choice for towing. On the other hand, the Toyota Tundra towed the Space Shuttle! RV consultant Bob Zagami said it well, "It is not how much you can tow, it is how much you can control and stop that is important!"

Conventional towing weight would not be considered with the ASHS. It virtually places no weight on a hitch as it would for conventional towing. The ASHS includes a modified Class 5 receiver assembly certified for 30K pounds. When the ASHS is attached, it literally becomes an extension to the vehicle's frame and with no additional stress. The tow vehicle's frame just became longer, therefore, towing stability has greatly increased. You're not going to overweight the tow vehicle springs and now you have two additional brakes stronger than on most 3/4 and 1 ton tow vehicles. If I recall correctly, the story is that the certifying company called Joe after they reached 45K pounds and wanted to know how high he wanted it certified.

FYI: The ASHS weighs about 1,600 pounds. Obviously, that weight is included with the 50% increased towing capacity.

-- Edited by Cyclone Dave on Friday 23rd of August 2013 03:33:28 PM


Dave and Amy ~ Owners of a Heartland Cyclone 4012 Toy Hauler 

RV-Dreams Community Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 15

I see you are on several RV forums and touting the Automated Safety Hitch. You say you are being impartial and have no vested interest in this device. I have inquired several times now to this company and did at first get e-mail replies. Now however, asking several times for pricing I am getting no response. Can you possibly answer me as to what the problem might be? TIA Rod

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