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 > Maneuverability of toy hauler vs class A DP

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msturtz

Washington

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Posted: 02/08/18 06:13pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have experience with towable units as well as multiple motorhomes. I also have a CDL so I have truck experience as well. In general a class A DP rig will be more maneuverable vs other types of rigs. Let me explain why. There are two factors that determine how sharp you can turn:
Wheelbase
Wheel cut
Rear overhang

On DP units you typically have the wheels in the center of the rig. This means they have a front overhang and a rear overhang. The net effect of this is for a given length they have a much smaller wheelbase than other types of rig. For example: I had a 31' Class C rig which was actually 33.5' bumper to bumper. It had a 228" wheelbase and a 45 degree wheel cut my new coach is a Class A 33' but is actually 34.5" with a 208" wheelbase and a 55 degree wheel cut. This means that my "larger" Class A rig can actually turn sharper than my smaller Class C. I have been able to make some pretty remarkable turns without backing with my Class A DP. The lack of a 10’ rear overhang helps as well.

As to towable units, there are many factors however in general the wheel cut and wheelbase of the tow rig come in. You mention that you have a F450 which would likely have a 45 degree or 50 degree wheel cut. The problem with tight turns and I have done a lot of them is swing out room for the tow vehicle. I could literally spin my towable unit nearly in its own length however to stop turning requires swinging the truck around the other way. I have had to put a 36’ towable unit into a 15’ wide spot where the access was barely 10’ wide. It took me over ½ hour to get it parked but I did it. It was extremely difficult. Literally inch by inch back turn pull forward turn back turn and so on till I got it parked. It also required getting out an looking to ensure I didn’t hit anything. Another time I was late getting into a very cramped state campground and it was very tight. It took me forever in the middle of the night to get parked because people had parked across from and next to my site and it required a 90 degree turn. Extremely difficult to get parked and then in most towable units everything is manual, leveling jacks etc. I always had to at least ensure the rig was leveled and blocked before I could even disconnect from the tow vehicle.


Bottom line it is vastly more difficult to maneuver around with a towable unit. I can do it and I have been towing for years. I would much rather handle a longer straight vehicle than ever deal with a towable unit. With a DP having a shorter front and rear overhang is much easier. With my DP I can drop the toad in the street pull past the site back in hit the jacks auto-level button, jump out plug in power and all done.

* This post was edited 02/08/18 06:20pm by msturtz *


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Lexx

California

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Posted: 02/08/18 07:50pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for all the thoughtful replies. Now my wife has more ammo lol. And I'm now going to have to do more research on class A's.

So I guess the take home message is even with a relatively short 36 ft toy hauler, a 41 to 43 ft DP would be more maueverable in tight quarters.


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Mile High

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Posted: 02/08/18 10:58pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

And who wants a short toy hauler? [emoticon]

The only ones I've seen I would consider were enormous!


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ArchHoagland

Clovis, CA, USA

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Posted: 02/09/18 12:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Class A is easier to park and has a much better view out the front window when traveling! Not to mention you can go potty without leaving the RV.


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dubdub07

Colorado Springs

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Posted: 02/09/18 10:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My 36ft FW was not as easy to manage as my 42ft DP.


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J-Rooster

Port Orchard, Wa. / Lake Havasu City, Az.

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Posted: 02/09/18 10:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lexx, if you have lots of toys to take with you on your camping trips the Toy Hauler would be better and you will take less a hit on depreciation, IMHO. A heads up in my experience National Parks and Forest Service seem to have smaller RV sites, State and Private campgrounds usually provide you with more room to maneuver! I’ve seen more Toy Haulers this year in Arizona then ever. And more Polaris Razors! Have fun the joy of life is what it’s all about!

cbigham

orange , CA

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Posted: 02/10/18 07:36am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've had a 31 ft Tahoe toy hauler I hauled with a Chevy 4x4 drama for a number of years and I've had a 40ft fun mover diesel 39c for 12 years. (Just sold) Both were in and out of national park campgrounds. The fun mover was the most limited. There are roads you simply cannot access at 40 ft plus jeep rubicon. Now your 5er is even bigger! I'd ask:
-what kind of toys are you brining? 40ft diesel gives you a jeep and make dirt bike off back
-how many toys? How you want to transoort, recover those toys if broken? A 4x4 pick up with the 5er hitch removed is pretty handy to move the toys (bikes or at I assume?) From the current location to various trail heads without requiring you to break camp and set up elsewhere.
- how serious is your jeeping? If you're interested in tuff roads getting way out there there's no substitute. Your f450 will not be comfortable nor as capable. If it is, then it's not going to be a comfortable tow vehicle.
In days gone by I have recovered a buddy's broken dirt bike from a canyon with the jeep and a motorcycle rack..also pulled a broken rzr back to camp.

Bruce Brown

Northern NY

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Posted: 02/10/18 02:43pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We currently own a 40' DP, until a few months ago we also owned a 33' TT. While not a 5th wheel, a trailer nonetheless.

For my money, I'll take the DP every time. It is sooo much easier to maneuver, park, place, move - everything, than the TT was.

Modern DPs have a 55 or 60 degree wheel cut. They will almost move sideways. Many times we've pulled into a place that looked tight and parked with no issues at all. More than once we've opened the door to neighbors clapping - Gods honest truth. I'm not that good - it's that easy.


There are 24 hours in every day - it all depends on how you choose to use them.
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msturtz

Washington

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Posted: 02/11/18 01:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lexx wrote:

Thanks for all the thoughtful replies. Now my wife has more ammo lol. And I'm now going to have to do more research on class A's.

So I guess the take home message is even with a relatively short 36 ft toy hauler, a 41 to 43 ft DP would be more maueverable in tight quarters.


I don’t know if this is an issue for you but we have 3 kids 2 four year olds and a 12 year old. That means 3 females in my household. It seems like someone needs to use the restroom nearly constantly. With a DP (any motor home really) I don’t need to stop. With our DP they don’t get tossed around as much as our gas rig. This is vastly easier! BTW all this is from a person that swore I would never buy a Class A DP. I’m glad I got over my initial resistance!

Ivylog

Blairsville, GA and WPB, FL.

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Posted: 02/11/18 03:55pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I. I would rate a 5er the worst for maneuverability and a TT better and a MH the best. The problem with a 5er is it does not track as well as a TT...it cuts the corner while the rear overhang of a TV makes a TT follow the TV better.

Occasionally with a MH I've had to do a two point turn... you star the turn too late requiring you to back up a little before finishing the turn. This lets you make a turn even a TT could not make.


This post is my opinion (free advice). It is not intended to influence anyone's judgment nor do I advocate anyone do what I propose.

08 HR Navigator 45'
Sold 04 Dynasty after 14 great years.
How I tow.
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How I spend the winter.

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