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post #11 of 32 Old 3 Weeks Ago
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Interesting project. Can your PLC control all 4 corners (I assume you are programming it yourself)?


Also why is WD hitch a no go for you?
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The PLC I'm using could control all 4 corners, but I would need to buy additional IO cards (2 analog inputs, 2 digital outputs). I would probably just buy a second PLC ($130) and connect them with ethernet. The networking seems pretty seamless:

Yep, I'm programming it myself, it's the fun part for me. Nice thing is the programming software is available for Mac if you're a Mac user. Demo version of the software is free, I had my program written and simulated before I bought the PLC. Full version of the software is $69.

The Touareg manual states a WD hitch must not be used. There have been several threads on the topic, from my research the only way I see this done safely is to weld an additional support to resist the bending moment acting on the hitch.
https://www.clubtouareg.com/forums/f...-287509-4.html

We also have a steep driveway leading to our side yard where we park our trailer. The standard ball hitch gives us less than an inch of clearance, a WD hitch would hang about 3 inches lower, so we would have to layout a path of wood blocks or something. I also just don't want to deal with a WD setup. My previous SUV had air suspension and it towed beautifully. It's nice to be able to raise and lower the hitch to tilt the trailer over obstacles, or level the trailer out when camping. I'll have full manual control over height, not just limited presets.

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Originally Posted by NTDI View Post
Interesting project. Can your PLC control all 4 corners (I assume you are programming it yourself)?


Also why is WD hitch a no go for you?

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post #13 of 32 Old 3 Weeks Ago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by etischer View Post
Yep, I'm programming it myself, it's the fun part for me. Nice thing is the programming software is available for Mac if you're a Mac user. Demo version of the software is free, I had my program written and simulated before I bought the PLC. Full version of the software is $69.

The Touareg manual states a WD hitch must not be used. There have been several threads on the topic, from my research the only way I see this done safely is to weld an additional support to resist the bending moment acting on the hitch.

What programming language?

I had considered doing the air suspension upgrade, however remember reading that the factory system doesn't play well with a WD hitch (I have no idea why). My trailer has @ 400 lb tongue weight and it makes the rear end squat way more than I think it should. I have no idea how VW rates it up to 616 lbs. The only thing I can figure is IF you use their short ball mount it reduces the aft moment vs an aftermarket cheap mount.


I'd like to upgrade to air springs but wasn't sure what was involved and whether it would prevent me from towing my trailer with the factory control.

If you've found a way to control the system independently of VWs electronics I'm tempted to reconsider doing all 4 axles. Can you change ride height if you wanted to with the PLC?
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The Siemens Logo PLC uses Ladder or Function Block Diagram (FBD).

Yep, you change the ride height setpoint (all constants) in the PLC using the built in LCD screen and keypad, or you could program analog / digital inputs to select different presets.

With 500 lbs on the ball, my rear sags 1.25" and the front raises 0.5". I'm using the shortest after market ball mount I could find.

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post #15 of 32 Old 2 Weeks Ago Thread Starter
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Here's a schematic of my air suspension if any one is interested.
http://etischer.com/touareg/airsuspension/TAS.pdf

Got my constant current power supply installed today.

Still waiting to install the compressor, but so far it's working well running off an air tank. Nice to finally have control over the shock dampening.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by etischer View Post

The Touareg manual states a WD hitch must not be used. There have been several threads on the topic, from my research the only way I see this done safely is to weld an additional support to resist the bending moment acting on the hitch.
https://www.clubtouareg.com/forums/f...-287509-4.html
I'm convinced that whoever wrote the manuals for VW were lazy and were never proofread. It's so easy for them to just write one manual and only change a few lines than to write specific vehicle manuals.
I looked for the statement about not using a WD hitch for my 2013 Touareg and found it. That got me wondering though and looked up the manual for a Jetta and Passat, and guess what? The warnings and Tech requirements for the Touareg, Jetta and Passat were word for word identical.
If a WD system isn't allowed per the manual, then why does the sticker on the factory installed hitch show a tongue weight rating with a WD system?
Looking at your electric Passat build I see you like to tinker, but also think you are overthinking this just because of a general statement written in the manual.

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This is pretty bad ass and kudos to you sir. I was looking for an AirRide set up for my particular set up and might start reading up on your thread more often. My buddy specializes in bagging vehicles but I'd like the OEM type lift rather than the chassis dragging on the floor, my car is currently lowered but it does go off road once in a blue moon.
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post #18 of 32 Old 2 Weeks Ago Thread Starter
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I wouldn't think a Jetta or Passat would be rated to handle a WD hitch, just like I don't think the Touareg is either, they are all sheet metal unibody designs. VW even made a Touareg specific stubby ball mount to reduce the torque applied to the hitch. I don't think your theory holds water.

There are many other reasons I've already stated why a WD hitch won't work for me, my last vehicle had air suspension, and this seems to be the best solution.


Quote:
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I'm convinced that whoever wrote the manuals for VW were lazy and were never proofread. It's so easy for them to just write one manual and only change a few lines than to write specific vehicle manuals.
I looked for the statement about not using a WD hitch for my 2013 Touareg and found it. That got me wondering though and looked up the manual for a Jetta and Passat, and guess what? The warnings and Tech requirements for the Touareg, Jetta and Passat were word for word identical.
If a WD system isn't allowed per the manual, then why does the sticker on the factory installed hitch show a tongue weight rating with a WD system?
Looking at your electric Passat build I see you like to tinker, but also think you are overthinking this just because of a general statement written in the manual.

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post #19 of 32 Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by etischer View Post
I wouldn't think a Jetta or Passat would be rated to handle a WD hitch, just like I don't think the Touareg is either, they are all sheet metal unibody designs. VW even made a Touareg specific stubby ball mount to reduce the torque applied to the hitch. I don't think your theory holds water.
Spending $1600 on a lifting air bag system just so you don't have to place a few blocks of wood on your driveway or have the rear end sag a little seems a bit excessive to me.
How often do you tow your trailer?
People have been towing trailers with their Touaregs since 2003. I've been on the forums since 2006 and never saw a post of a unibody failure at the hitch attachment.
This is the sticker on my 2006 Touareg's hitch. My 2013's sticker shows the lower 616 lb weight, but the hitches look identical and I'd be willing to bet that the unibody hasn't changed either.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VWRalf View Post
...If a WD system isn't allowed per the manual, then why does the sticker on the factory installed hitch show a tongue weight rating with a WD system?
I’m not sure which model year is directly being discussed.... but when I was shopping for a hitch to add to my ‘13 I found that VW/Audi/Porsche each have their own part number for the Touareg/Q7Cayenne (all appear identical). I almost bought a hitch from a ‘11 Touareg which would have bolted up. I ended up ordering the correct ‘13 specific part number. When I compare pictures of the ‘11 and my ‘13 they appear physically identical except the decals.

The ‘11 and ‘12 decal have weight distributing hitch placards where tongue weight and max tow for both Wd and non WD appear. The ‘13 hitch makes no mention of WD, yet the hitch and bolts appear to remain the same.

As someone else posted, I doubt they went through the hassle and cost to make a design change and all the paperwork required to cheapen up the hitch mount. In reality they probably kept making the same chassis and simply changed the placard to reduce liability and risk exposure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by etischer View Post
...just like I don't think the Touareg is either, they are all sheet metal unibody designs. VW even made a Touareg specific stubby ball mount to reduce the torque applied to the hitch. I don't think your theory holds water.
Why is a sheet metal unibody a bad thing? It’s just engineering.

If I were betting, I’d bet that VW engineers over designed the hitch and receivers (like they do everything else). Why does a 10,000 lb hitch off a GM 2500HD weigh the same or less than the hitch on my ‘13?

As to weight distributing hitch placarding. It costs VW almost nothing to downgrade the tow rating, and at the same time reduce their liability exposure by a lot. Heck some companies don’t even offer hitches and the owner has an aftermarket installed and assumes the liability.

Also if you are going to sell a $250 hitch for $1200 (or more), it better look the part and appear to be top quality...
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