Tow vehicle advice

Discussion in 'Going to the DARK SIDE' started by saler, Aug 3, 2015.

  1. saler

    saler New Member

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    I'm starting to look around at trucks, and want to get something that we can comfortably tow a travel trailer in the 7-8k weight. I don't have any loyalty to a specific brand, but have been looking at the f150s. Would like to find something 2 or 3 years old, 4wd, and 4 door cab.

    I'm just curious as to what people are driving to tow there travel trailers in that range.
     
  2. 96Rockwood

    96Rockwood Member

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    That weight range, I would pass on any 1/2 ton and be looking at 3/4 ton and up. Mostly for the frame, suspension and brakes strength. Not to mention the larger powertrain cooling system, and generally larger transmission and stronger rear axle.

    So start shopping for 2500's and F-250's

    The GM 2500's with the 6.0L gas engine is a hard petrol package to beat. Very proven driveline.
     
  3. speckhunter80

    speckhunter80 Well-Known Member

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    That much weight you are gong to need a 250/2500 class truck
     
  4. Old_Geezer

    Old_Geezer Well-Known Member

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    X3^^^^^

    You can get a 1500 / 1/2 ton with some sort of enhanced / max towing package, along with an engine be it diesel, turbocharged, or gas that will get you better than an 8K "tow rating".

    What it won't get you is enhanced payload / cargo carrying capacity while your towing, and all the heavy duty benefits 96 Rockwood points out.
     
  5. adrianpglover

    adrianpglover Active Member

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    Remember that the "tow ratings" are typically based on an empty truck with just a driver. Once you add your family and luggage, then the tow rating goes down as the effective TW goes up.
     
  6. Ductape

    Ductape Well-Known Member

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    I would certainly agree that is 3/4 ton territory, regardless of what your RV dealer tells you.
     
  7. saler

    saler New Member

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    Thanks for the replies. The f150s with the max towing package and Ecoboost claim 17k max gcwr and 11k towing? Would that not be sufficient?

    I may have to talk my wife down from these large trailers. I am not sure with the extra cost and size of the larger trucks it is worth it for my needs outside of being able to tow the larger campers.
     
  8. 96Rockwood

    96Rockwood Member

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    Ok, we are missing one piece of information GVW Gross Vehicle Weight, this is what the vehicle can be at max on it's own two axles. Your trailer tonque weight will be into this. At that weight trailer you are looking at tonque weights in the 800 to 1400 lbs range.
     
  9. saler

    saler New Member

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    I can't find the gvw, but really I've yet to find any 150s used that list over 7800 gvcr. I'm thinking regardless to take your advice and start looking at the 3/4 ton trucks.

    I might be jumping in a little headfirst as we currently have a 1987 Starcraft pop up. As we've looked at some of the travel trailers my wife has gone from a modest 26 foot jay flight to wanting their 32 series which are 35 feet long.
     
  10. Old_Geezer

    Old_Geezer Well-Known Member

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    I dont know where you like to camp but if its PA state parks once you get 30' and larger you'll be very limited on site selection at most.
     
  11. sgip2000

    sgip2000 Member

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    My last trip out I saw an F150 towing a fifth wheel. The trailer was not "compact" by any means either. Surprisingly, there was little rear end sag.
     
  12. silverfz

    silverfz Active Member

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    I think first i would start with getting an idea of what you will tow. That will give you an idea of the dry weight. Add 1000 lbs for a typical packer. We camp but travel light and also never boondock . If you plan then u need a 3/4 tonne to get the payload to carry Generators ,wood and extra supplies.

    We have a 28 footer ,length wise 31 feet. Its a double bunk and queen model.dry 6333 .so I think we are around 7300 max loaded . We never carry firewood, no water in the tanks .just propane , clothes ,food in the fridge and some board games and bedding.
    The truck carries our bikes .

    My payload is 1400 or so. I am right at my payload max. But my truck is our school going,grocery getter in the winter .so we needed a 1/2 tonne . It fits in the garage.typical run cycle is 10 minutes in sub zero temps and even cooler days.

    8k you will be okay if u get max tow package in f150. Decide which model first . If you stick to close to 6k dry a 1/2 tonne is great. 7-8 you need the payload packaged f150 or the Nissan xd
     
  13. saler

    saler New Member

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    I'm currently looking at a 2012 F150 with the max towing package. The max payload is 1,930, GVWR or 7,650 and max trailer weight of 11,300. I'd like to be in something like the JayFlight 26BHS which has a dry weight of 5920 and 800 pound dry hitch. I'd definitely be buying a weight distribution hitch. I've talked my wife down to something under 30 feet and closer to 6000 pounds dry weight.

    Does this sound more inline? I've used a few online calculators and I seem to be in spec.
     
  14. Keith Hawkins

    Keith Hawkins Active Member

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    Most current description of your "wanted" setup sounds pretty good and doable. Good luck with everything.
     
  15. Old_Geezer

    Old_Geezer Well-Known Member

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    The truck you mention will handle it but look at it from a "payload" standpoint.

    Your 800lb dry hitch weight will end up @ 1000 lbs or better which leaves you 930 lbs. What does Ford figure included in their capacity? Fuel and driver?
    930 lbs is not a lot of room unless you travel light.
     
  16. saler

    saler New Member

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    From my understanding just a full tank of gas is included in the payload rating. With me, my wife, 2 dogs, and 1 year old we'd be about 400 pounds. We are used to packing everybody and everything into a tiny jeep liberty, so I think if we continued to pack similarly we'll be ok. I will say matching up the vehicle you want and your expectations of what you'll tow is pretty exhausting. Thanks for all the input.
     
  17. Old_Geezer

    Old_Geezer Well-Known Member

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    You won't be ok.

    1930 lbs less the anticipated hitch weight of 1000 lbs and less your family 400lbs = 530 lbs remaining payload.

    Out of that 530 lbs you need to subtract the weight of any other thing in the trucks cab or bed, and a percentage of the weight of anything you put in the trailer ahead of the axle. The 530 is not going to be enough. I know that from experience.

    You have to be realistic, stop using dry weights and use GVWR of the trailer. At 6000 lbs dry weight you end up at what GVWR on a trailer? 7500? 8000?

    All's good if you can travel that light. I don't think it's realistic. My HTT is 6000 GVW, 4160 dry and I tow with a 3/4 ton for the payload alone.
     
  18. JeepMama

    JeepMama New Member

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    We went with a used Chevrolet Avalanche 2500 to pull our 25 foot bunk house TT.

    John don't forget to tell him about the surface thing. LOL!
     
  19. saler

    saler New Member

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    Apologies for my ignorance, and I'm not trying to argue with you. The Jayco 26BHS (which i haven't bought, this was just theoretical) is 5920 dry and 7750 gross. I understand that everything in the truck counts towards payload, but don't see where i would eat up another 400-500 pounds in the truck after my family. I could see this changing as my son grows and we start lugging bikes and other things.

    What do you think would be reasonable something 6000lb GVWR, 500 dry hitch? In your opinion what is a safe buffer for payload after the trailer and family?
     
  20. Old_Geezer

    Old_Geezer Well-Known Member

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    No apology needed and it's not an argument.

    The 400 to 500 lbs can be used up quick. What you do not want to is end up investing in a tow vehicle to find out its not going to do what you need it to do. To me having about 2300 lbs or so of additional payload is what's required but we don't travel light.
     

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