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Again!!! ATTN Fulton swing tongue owners

jason p

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Well it happened again. Some of you may remember a few months ago that I had the bolt snap that that the swing tongue pivots on. Well yesterday I got back to the house and noticed this. I don't know if its just my trailer or the dirt road I live on exerting excessive forces on the tongue of the trailer. I don't think I've ever heard of anyone else having this problem, needless to say it's pretty scary stuff. I tried to contact Fulton when the bolt broke awhile ago but got no response from them. Needless to say there are now two grade 8 bolts in the tongue.




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I feel this is pretty important so I'll break-down the reply to answer each question.

-Forum member justdriftin brought to my attention, and correctly so, that a grade 5 bolt would be a better solution than a grade 8 due to grade 8 bolt's hardness making it more bridle in an application that definitely sees some flexing an twisting forces.

-The boat is positioned correctly on the trailer, I confirmed this when I stopped by the Ameratrail factory last year. The transom is even with the rear-end of the bunk.

-The "swivel bolt" broke last July-ish (pictured below) this is when I first reached out to Fulton. The response I got from them was that I should be inspecting the swing tongue hardware prior to hitting the road. As you can see from the picture of the pin is has had a crack in it for some time due to the discoloration of the pin and the fact you can clearly see the bright spot where the final failure of the pin occurred on Sunday.  I'm guilty of not inspecting the hardware, that's a fact. But I doubt I would have seen the crack in the pin or the boly prior to failure.


The only thing I can think of is that my boat sits kinda "nose high" due to the height of my truck (Silverado 2500) This may be causing some extra stress on the swing tongue, there is some up-and-down movement in the tongue with the pin installed. Besides that I have no idea. I just wanted to put this out there for other swing tongue users to keep in mind and add to their mental check-list before hitting the road. This is on a relatively light HPX, the forces on a Pathfinder would be much greater, obviously.


Fortunately my boat fits in the garage without the tongue folded so I switched to a regular solid tongue yesterday. Be careful fellas.



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Brittleness shouldn't really be a factor.  For an interesting read on the subject hit this link.  http://tinelok.com/grade-5-vs-grade-8-fasteners/

It looks like you might of had a defective bolt to begin with.  Be sure to read the whole article and also look at breaking strength chart at the end for both grade 5 and grade 8 bolts relative to their dimensions.  Of course, a 1000lb boat on a bumpy road exerts more than 1000lbs of force.  F=MA

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Funny this topic came up. I was looking at my Fulton swing away and it was gettin kinda jiggly lookin... I switched the whole tounge assembly to Magictilt's  welded model... I think I like it better. Seems more solid...


By the way, the height of your truck can be compensated for by the proper height adjustment of the trailer ball... Too high may cause not enough tongue weight, which could cause bouncing, putting stress on those pins...






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