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 > Your search for posts made by 'Hemling' found 21 matches.

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  Subject Author Date Posted Forum
Ultimate payload monster?

What do you think is the top payload rating among new one-ton trucks? All the advertising goes toward horsepower/torque and towing capacity, but what configuration is king of payload?
Hemling 07/27/21 07:27pm Tow Vehicles
RE: Newby questions

Currently, we have a 32' floorplan (about 38' tongue to spare) TT being towed behind an Excursion. We have had this setup for a little over four years now, and are beginning to reassess needs as our family grows and interests change. We have used the camper essentially as a base of operations because we have held Disney / Legoland / Universal passes over the time we have lived in Southern FL. Two children, 10 and 8. We take a 'big' trip to visit family in the Midwest each summer (about 4000 mile round trip). My feeling is either go big (FW) or go 'nomad' with a Class C that will get our family more mobile as we grow and age. Obvious problem to getting a nice FW is having to get a truck, and then the FW. That is two very large investments. If we went Class C, it would just be one large investment, which probably is close to equaling the cost of truck and FW (if we go new). Living in urban Miami, I do not relish the idea of trying to drive a one ton (possibly DRW) anywhere. If we went Class C, it would have to be stored somewhere (not ideal), but I would not have a gigantic truck in my driveway that can't be driven anywhere but towing the camper. We are comfortable in our current TT. Having full access to bathroom, beds, entertainment while driving, however, would be HUGE. I am comfortable driving / backing / maneuvering the 55+ feet of TV and TT we currently drive, so I do not think a Class C would be a problem (even with a toad), but I am concerned that space would be a problem when set up. We need to take the next step of actually walking through different FW and Class C units. We did this a number of years ago, and at that time a TT made sense because we already had the Excursion to tow it with. A truck that can handle a 12-14K FW reliably I'm thinking is going to go $50-$60K, and then a FW is at least that again (conservatively). So we are either $120K into a VERY large setup, or possibly $70-$90K into a really nice 32-35' Class C. Any input is appreciated, or if it seems my figures are way off.
Hemling 07/25/21 08:50pm Class C Motorhomes
Newby questions

Do the new Class C motorhomes with the Ford chassis come with the 10 speed transmission? I understand the engines are detuned, but what other main differences are there in the driveline compared to a F350 or F450? From those with experience with TT and Class C, what are the big differences between a '32 foot' Class C compared to a '32' foot TT for instance? Is there a noticeable difference in usable space? I mean, 32 feet is 32 feet, right? Is it measured differently? What is the hardest thing to get used to driving a Class C in the 30-35 foot range as opposed to towing a 35 or so foot TT?
Hemling 07/25/21 03:10pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: New truck pricing

Related Question: is this why the used market is so crazy right now? Seems like you don't save as much as you used to buying a 3 or so year old truck compared to new. Maybe I'm just old, but I seem to remember buying a 3 year old truck was a pretty huge savings over new. Now, you are almost better off special ordering and waiting for better warranty, maybe better financing. . . I know you aren't talking used, but maybe another symptom of the market right now.
Hemling 07/24/21 06:18am Tow Vehicles
RE: 6.8 3-valve towing FW

That's really interesting - I always wondered how equal the 6.8 would be had it gotten the 6 speed transmission. I suppose a 6.2 with the 6 speed would feel just as strong as the v-10 with the 4 or 5 speed trans. Or for that matter a base model 6.2 F350 that's new enough to get the 10 speed. Although if I'm looking that new there isn't that much of a price differential between going for the 7.3 I suppose.
Hemling 07/22/21 10:41am Tow Vehicles
6.8 3-valve towing FW

Been doing a lot of research on Ford gas HD trucks these past few weeks and here are my observations. I've been poring over towing guides and brochures, and it seems like the 3-valve v-10s were a real bright spot (2005-2010), and then the HD gas engine market died when diesels started really making serious power in the 2010s. Then, the 7.3 came out when lots of people didn't know if they needed 1000 ft. lbs. to pull a 10K camper. On paper, the 6.2 that held the fort down in the 2010s doesn't look much worse than the 6.8 it replaced, but I wonder if it really pulled as well or was torque deficient. What I'm getting at here is that I'd like to know what people's real-world impressions are towing a 12-13K FW with a 3-valve 6.8. Seems like they only came SRW. I'm not cheap, but I'm not made of money either. Do I need a $55K new truck with the 7.3? No, I mean, I COULD get one, and I know it would do everything I need and then some. There is always the voice in the back of my head that says to pick up a $15-$20K 3-valve 6.8, stick $5K into it with tune and gears and whatnot, and make more power than a stock 7.3. Now, I know the transmission is a HUGE deciding factor. Also, a 15-ish year old truck compared to new. I feel like it's kind of like the hot rod mentality. There were guys who just bought a new Mustang or Camaro, but then there were the gearheads who bought old stuff and built it to what they wanted. I know it's not a perfect analogy, but if the 7.3 came stock with 550 hp and 600+ ft. lbs., I don't know that it would be a decision. 10 years between the 3-valve and 7.3, and the output just doesn't seem to justify the massive premium in price. Am I writing off the 6.2 throughout the 2010s too easily? Towing guides still give the old 6.8 better FW capacity than the 6.2 throughout.
Hemling 07/19/21 09:14pm Tow Vehicles
RE: Dometic AC Issues

Our is a Coleman unit, but does the same thing. Mine is a little over 4 years old and the first two years or so everything was fine, but then the A/C would cut out, and sometimes the thermostat itself would go blank too. Sometimes you could just reset the temp and it would kick right back on, other times the thermostat was dead. It is hard wired so not a battery issue. I pulled the unit off the wall and the wires going into the thermostat were all corroded, so I cut them back to clean wire and reinstalled. It still did the same thing. I have a new thermostat on order. I'm thinking in my case the corrosion on the wires leads to shorting connections within the thermostat itself. It has done this at numerous different sites over the past two years, so I rules out low voltage. Also, sometimes I can get it back to life by wiggling the thermostat around, tapping it, generally abusing it. . . so that's where mine is if that helps.
Hemling 07/19/21 06:12am Tech Issues
RE: Trade-in sweet spot

Thanks for all your input. The situation we are in is that we will be transitioning to a FW but first need to get the truck. Right now I am towing with a Ford Excursion. The plan is to get the right truck in 2-3 years, continue towing my current TT with the new(er) truck for a few years, then get a FW. We may well have our current TT for five more years, making it about 10 years old I'm thinking when we make the changeover to FW. So this is all really advance planning. By then, I won't owe much at all on the unit.
Hemling 07/18/21 11:37am Travel Trailers
Trade-in sweet spot

Is there a rule of thumb for when it is considered 'best' to trade in your TT for a new one? A certain age range, percentage paid off. . . etc? We have a 4 1/2 year old unit (bought new) and will be going FW *sometime in the future, just wondering if there are any do's and dont's that can get us the best value when the time is right.
Hemling 07/17/21 07:55pm Travel Trailers
Little fans in skylight

Where can I source the little fans in the skylight assemblies? This is for a Keystone Sprinter. I have one in each skylight, and one just went out of balance and self-destructed. All I can find are the complete skylight assemblies, but it would be ideal to just wire in a new fan.
Hemling 07/16/21 04:37pm Tech Issues
RE: Thermostat woes

Sorry - correction - there are actually six wires going into the back of the unit. Also, there is a brown wire that comes out of the wire packet from the wall, but has been snipped off and does not go into the thermostat at all. The diagram on the back of the unit seems to indicate that there is a blank spot corresponding to this wire's location. Maybe an unused wire for other models? I am sitting in the camper right now and it kicked off a few minutes ago, so I took it off the wall, manhandled it a bit, and it's back to working now, but the digital display is off. Jumped 5 degrees when I took it off the wall. Any help in getting a programmable unit installed is appreciated. I'm fine with electrical work and wiring, just don't want to go on a hunting expedition through harnesses. If I can get something that will work with the wires I have great, if not, I guess I'll wire in a toggle switch or something to bypass the thermostat.
Hemling 07/15/21 08:21pm Tech Issues
Thermostat woes

We have the Coleman 'Airxcel' thermostat in our Keystone Sprinter. It is the basic unit, one long rectangular button on the bottom for mode, and then two triangular buttons to go up or down on temperature. Long story short, it is cutting out randomly on us, which is really frustrating. Sometimes it will blank out completely, in which case tapping on or messing with the unit will usually get it to 'power' back on, and sometimes it just kicks off before reaching the set temperature, but the display still functions so you can just restart it. When we are all in the camper for a while it will sometimes run flawlessly all day, other times it will glitch out 2-3 times within a half hour. If we are gone all day, we always come back to a 100+ degree camper. I have very little confidence in the cheapness of this unit, so I would much rather replace it with a wired, programmable one. What options are there that will still utilize the stock wiring? It's got red blue green white and yellow wires going into it.
Hemling 07/15/21 07:49pm Tech Issues
RE: Basic Maintenance

That's about what I figured - thanks. When we moved to Miami three years ago, the camper had to go to a storage facility (field) when not in use, and this is two hours away, so the only real time I have to do any of this work is when we are actually at a campsite. Just no room for it, and storing it in Miami would be very, very expensive. We are planning a major trip next summer, so I will have time to get around to all the maintenance items before then. Been super fortunate, biggest issues are minor items (doorknobs, loose trim. . .), and my spare tire cover blew off somewhere in Iowa four years ago.
Hemling 07/15/21 05:48am Travel Trailers
Basic Maintenance

Our Travel Trailer just turned 5 years old. I am beginning to keep a close eye on things like tires and brakes. I have 'Trail King' (original) tires and have not looked at brakes or bearings or anything like that at all. I've put about 10,000 miles on the unit total. From what I've read, 6-10 years is a good interval for tires, no matter what. Mine are about half worn down, but will probably dry rot and age out before wearing out. How often do you guys repack bearings? I've poked around underneath a little, and the stock drum-style electric brakes don't look too daunting to tackle. The campground that we frequent that is kind of near to home for us allows 'light' camper work/repair, and I'm no stranger to packing a standard wheel bearing or servicing a drum brake unit, but I have to admit this is new to me. I'm used to maintaining cars that are driven regularly, not ones that sit for months and months. Should I be more on top of this type of thing?
Hemling 07/14/21 07:08pm Travel Trailers
RE: How critical is axle ratio?

It does concern me a bit, and I'm thankful for this discussion, because in the near future I hope to be a 2022/2023 (whenever I get around to it) super duty owner. Right now towing a 9K TT, and probably something like a 12-13K fifth wheel in the future. for me, I've made the decision that a 7.3 F-350 makes the most sense. I don't want a truck that turns too many RPMs unloaded on the highway, but I also don't want it to lug while towing. Anything will seem like a huge improvement over my 4r100/3.73 combo right now. I guess it's first world problems when you get down to it. Anybody running 4.30s with a newer 7.3/10 speed, what are your RPMs on the interstate? Does it feel like it's too high? Anyone running 3.55 or so gears? Do you even use 10th?!? Have the 7.3 with 3.55 gears and while towing a 30ft 7600# trailer at 65mph on the interstate, I always lock-out 9-10. Truck runs at 2100 RPMS and rarely downshifts. Empty getting 17.5 mpg highway. Towing-10.5 highway. So, when you are not towing, does it use 9th and 10th? What RPMs and MPHs do you see then?
Hemling 06/16/21 09:54am Tow Vehicles
RE: How critical is axle ratio?

It does concern me a bit, and I'm thankful for this discussion, because in the near future I hope to be a 2022/2023 (whenever I get around to it) super duty owner. Right now towing a 9K TT, and probably something like a 12-13K fifth wheel in the future. for me, I've made the decision that a 7.3 F-350 makes the most sense. I don't want a truck that turns too many RPMs unloaded on the highway, but I also don't want it to lug while towing. Anything will seem like a huge improvement over my 4r100/3.73 combo right now. I guess it's first world problems when you get down to it. Anybody running 4.30s with a newer 7.3/10 speed, what are your RPMs on the interstate? Does it feel like it's too high? Anyone running 3.55 or so gears? Do you even use 10th?!?
Hemling 06/15/21 10:09am Tow Vehicles
RE: How critical is axle ratio?

It's like what happened in the 80's when 4 speed overdrive automatic transmissions came out. Before that, you needed a 2.56-3.08 rear to cruise on the highway because of no overdrive, but then automakers started using deeper axle ratios as overdrives became more popular. You could accomplish the same thing with a 2.73 rear and wide ratio 4-speed, but saying 'it's got a 4.10 rear' sounds like it must be much faster. The new automatics have such ungodly low first gears I can't imagine needing a 4.xx anything axle ratio. You must be in first gear for all of half a second (especially when unloaded). I suppose it's all about perspective. Twenty years ago having 500 ft lbs was king, nowadays minivans have 300 horsepower.
Hemling 06/15/21 06:44am Tow Vehicles
How critical is axle ratio?

In the modern day of 10 speed automatics, how necessary are 'towing' gears? By 'towing' I mean anything over 4.xx. These new transmissions have such low first gears compared to just a decade ago, is it really necessary to get deep gears anymore? I understand it makes getting going easier on all the moving parts, if you have a 4.30 compared to say a 3.55 or something, but doesn't it all come out in the wash? What I mean is, a truck with lower numeric gears will just tow in a lower gear, while a truck with deeper gears will allow the transmission to hold a higher gear. Is there a tradeoff or 'sweet spot' that anyone can speak to? I am still towing with an Excursion, so everything is a trade off. I could install 4.56 gears, but only have 4 gears. I could keep 3.73 gears, but know I'll always be in 3rd or 2nd to pull. I know that the towing guides always list bigger weights the deeper the gears get, but with a modern 10 speed automatic, I'm just not seeing the big deal anymore.
Hemling 06/14/21 09:46am Tow Vehicles
Best leveling jacks/blocks

What do you guys use to stabilize your camper? Mine has the automatic stabilizers, but even on a concrete level pad we get a lot of bounce when walking through the camper. I feel like I need to get the load off the tires/suspension a bit.
Hemling 06/12/21 04:18pm Travel Trailers
RE: A/C randomly quits

I did have a mobile tech come out and check it out. He took off the thermostat, inspected the wires that go into the thermostat, and noted that the wires had bare wire showing for about 1/2 inch before going into the unit. There were 7 wires, I think. Several of them had burn marks. He cut the wires back, stripped them and reinstalled so that there is no bare wire showing (the insulation goes right up to where the wire connects now). That was two days ago. Yesterday we were gone all day and sure enough it cut out while we were gone again. I can get a replacement thermostat for like $30. I think I will just replace it. He thought that maybe moisture got on the wires, but I'm thinking if moisture got on the wires, it got inside the unit too, so there's got to be something still shorting out or not right within.
Hemling 06/11/21 06:36pm Travel Trailers
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