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 > What to look for in purchasing a tow vehicle for my TT

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bsiemens

Hellen GA

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Posted: 07/21/18 05:58pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Okay, I got a great deal on an older TT in really good shape but need a truck to tow it. The Dry weight of the trailer is 4,624lbs and the GVWR is 6500lbs. I think a half ton pickup will be okay but could use some guidance on engine and gear ratios. Hope to find something used, 2016 or newer. We are not planning on towing great distances but the Smokey Mountains are close and one of our favorite places. Any help would be greatly appreiated. I only want to do this once.

donn0128

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Posted: 07/21/18 09:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Welcome. Please do yourself a favor and forget terms,like dry or shipping. Neither has anything to do with the real world.
So, if you look for a tv to handle the gross weight of 6500 pounds, most any of the more modern 1500/150s will do you. Personally for a 3 or 4 year old teuck I would go with a Chevrolet 1500 5.3L V8. 4x4/4x2 is your choice as is cab configuration. If your planning to haul lots of passangers a 2500 might be a better choice for you. Better resale, so plan to spend a bit more. But for that you get better brakes, stronger axles, tires, wheels, frame, and a bot harsher ride. But you also get a 6.0L gas motor that is a real work horse. Fords are also good, but usually cost more. Search out in your area for what is the niggest dealer and buy that brand. There is likely going to be more of that brand on the market.
Dont get me wrong a properly equipped 1500 would do just fine in the flats and will work harder in the mountains, but do fine.





owenssailor

Ontario

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Posted: 07/21/18 09:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I only have experience with Chevs for towing. One of the GM twins will tow that trailer fine in my opinion.

You will need to get:
5.3 l engine
3.42 rear end
transmission cooler
integrated brake controller

You will also need a weight distribution hitch. I suggest getting a good on. I am very happy with our Equal-i-Zer.

On long steep grades the engine will rev. That is where the power is. Let it rip. 3000 and above is no problem.

e have towed our trailer which weighs about 6500 lb loaded coast to cost with a 2012 and a 2017 Chev Silverado 1500. Lat year we went about 9000 miles including across to San Diego.

Good luck


2011 Jayco 28U
2012 Chev Silverado Crew Cab 5.3 6 spd 3.42 (sold)
2017 Chev Silverado Crew Cab 5.3 8 spd 3.42
Equal-i-Zer 1400/14000
RotoChocks


2edgesword

New York

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Posted: 07/21/18 10:43pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The tongue weight of the trailer is going to be around 1,000 lbs (15% of 6,500 lbs) Add the weight of passengers and the gear that will be in the truck and that will give you some idea of the payload capacity you’re going to need. If payload for the truck isn’t clearly stated you can calculate it by deducting the curb weight of the vehicle from the maximum gross weight shown on the driver’s door sticker.

SoundGuy

S Ontario

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Posted: 07/22/18 04:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

bsiemens wrote:

Okay, I got a great deal on an older TT in really good shape but need a truck to tow it. The Dry weight of the trailer is 4,624lbs and the GVWR is 6500lbs. I think a half ton pickup will be okay but could use some guidance on engine and gear ratios. Hope to find something used, 2016 or newer. We are not planning on towing great distances but the Smokey Mountains are close and one of our favorite places.


With such a specific dry weight number, along with the fact this is an "older" trailer, I'd suspect that's a number you pulled out of a brochure or off the internet and is not it's actual dry weight as it sits there in your driveway. Accounting for any accessories & options this trailer may have over a base model, a battery (or two), propane in the tanks, and enough water in the water heater tank and fresh water holding tank to make this trailer operational I wouldn't be surprised to see this trailer's actual dry weight pushing close to 5000 lbs. Especially if this is a family trailer I could see you loading enough junk into it so it's GVW loaded & ready to camp might come awfully close to the trailer's GVWR. In a worse case scenario where it does you'd be running about 850 lbs gross tongue weight @ 13%, in which case a 1/2 ton's limited payload capacity that usually hovers around 1400 to 1500 lbs can be awfully limiting. For just two adults it might be acceptable but if you're also hauling along a gaggle of kids that only get bigger & heavier as they grow you may find a 1/2 ton's payload capacity insufficient.

I've been towing for a dozen years with GMs ubiquitous 5.3L coupled to a 3.42 axle, both with the older wide ratio 4-spd and currently with the newer narrow ratio 6-spd, and while the latter is certainly more flexible when it comes to towing that 3.42 in itself is pretty limiting when you're negotiating serious upgrades. For that I'd much rather have a 3.73 which will allow the engine to rev a bit higher in any given gear.

Our previous K-Z Spree averaged ~ 5500 lbs loaded & ready to camp with a gross tongue weight of ~ 750 lbs, the Coachmen Freedom Express ~ 4800 lb & ~ 625 lbs. While our GM 1/2 ton trucks towed the Spree OK I certainly knew there was nearly 3 tons behind me and feel that "less is more". Personally I wouldn't want to tow any trailer averaging more that ~ 6000 lbs fully loaded with any typical 1/2 ton, more than that is I think 3/4 ton territory with a larger engine, both for grunt under the hood and much better payload capacity. This trailer you've chosen is IMO certainly at or beyond the limit of what I'd be comfortable towing with a 1/2 ton.


2012 Silverado 1500 Crew Cab
2014 Coachmen Freedom Express 192RBS
2003 Fleetwood Yuma * 2008 K-Z Spree 240BH-LX
2007 TrailCruiser C21RBH * 2000 Fleetwood Santa Fe
1998 Jayco 10UD * 1969 Coleman CT380

valhalla360

No paticular place.

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Posted: 07/22/18 05:22am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Any of the big three 1/2ton trucks should work...key word "should".

Check:
- Tow Rating
- Hitch weight (take 12-15% of the GVWR of the trailer)
- Cargo capacity (don't forget to add the weight of passengers, gear in the truck and any after market items like running boards)

Most 1/2 ton trucks will be fine but there are a few built for very light duty.

Get a Weight Distributing Hitch if it didn't come with one and figure out how to use it.


Tammy & Mike
Ford F250 V10
2008 Copper Canyon 5er
Catalac Catamaran 34'
Full Time spliting time between boat and 5er


deltabravo

Spokane, WA

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Posted: 07/22/18 07:22am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'd rather have 3.73s for towing as well.


2009 Silverado 3500HD Dually, D/A, CCLB 4x4 (bought new 8/30/09)
2009 Arctic Fox 811 (bought new 11/9/09)
2015 Nash 17k (bought pre-owned 5/23/18)
2008 Haulmark 8.5x20 toy box trailer

Mr Biggles

Calgary, AB, Canada

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Posted: 07/22/18 12:46pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You don’t mention what/who else will be in the truck. If it’s just you and the wife, or five kids, the dog and kitchen sink. Just you and the wife, a 1/2 ton will be fine, but if you have a family, a 3/4 ton truck might be needed.


2011 F-150 FX4 5.0 3.73 Tow package
2013 Evergreen i-Go G239BH

rbpru

North Central Indiana

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Posted: 07/22/18 01:19pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Here are some real CAT scale numbers. they are similar to what you may see.

As mentioned dry weight means little. My 2010 TT has a dry weight of 5004 lbs. When loaded for the road it weighs 6200 lbs. across the scales, with 750 lbs. of that on the tongue. My 2011 F-150 E-Boost 4x4 will pull 9500 lbs. "BUT" it has a max cargo of 1411 lbs. according to the door jamb sticker. Once I subtract the tongue weight I have 661 lbs. for two adults, a big dog, tools and camping gear in the bed.

The end result is my F-150 is at its max cargo capacity. This has never been an issue and the combo works very well. However, if you haul a lot stuff, do a lot of hill climbing, or expect to get a bigger trailer; you might want to look at 3/4 ton truck.

We have averaged about 8000 mile a year towing across country for the last four years and our truck is a daily driver. It has done well in the Rockies, desert and the flat plains. But we have to live with the fact that it is at its max cargo limit and the wear and tear will accumulate accordingly.

Good luck


Twenty six foot 2010 Dutchmen Lite pulled with a 2011 EcoBoost F-150 4x4.

Just right for Grandpa, Grandma and the dog.


73guna

Omaha, Ne.

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Posted: 07/22/18 01:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Are you new to rving?
How many people in your family?
Newer 1/2 tons will do the job, but I always have the mindset of overkill when it comes to tow vehicles.
You wont go wrong getting a 3/4 ton truck and you'll already have the heavy duty truck when/if you upgrade to a larger trailer.


2007 Chevy Silverado Crewcab Duramax.
2016 Wildwood 31qbts.

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