Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Looking at Grand Design Reflection 287RLTS and gmc 2500
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 > Looking at Grand Design Reflection 287RLTS and gmc 2500

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Firetraveler

oregon

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Posted: 08/08/19 10:18am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I am looking at a either a travel trailer or small 5th wheel for my camping and traveling needs. The TT gives me a level floor front to back, full truck bed since no 5th wheel hitch and this one gives me the option of a splendide washer and dryer. I have full timed for a few years and am wanting smaller to get me into some smaller camp sites.
My concerns on the TT are mainly the handling difference from the 5th wheel.
My question to anyone that has a similar set up of a 32 ft 9000lb TT towed with a 3/4 ton 2200 lb payload capacity truck, how does it handle. Do you need a WD hitch with sway controll, is the $2700 Hensley hitch needed or will one like the blu ox work if one is needed? I really like the Reflection 287RLTS but don’t want a hitch up hassle or a bad driving experience.

Thanks for any help on this tough choice

librty02

Western Pa

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Posted: 08/08/19 10:33am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

In my opinion when going the TT route with anything in that 32 to 37ft range I would get the Hensley or ProPride Hitch right off the bat and be done with it and let that TT tow behind you just like the 5th wheel does. Yes they are around $3000 but a good 5th hitch will set you back 1500 and that 5th wheel hitch company will not purchase it back when you are finished with it like Hensley will. The resale value on the Hensley and PP hitches are at least half so 1500 is what you could get back from it 10 years from now. So in the long run the investment of the $3000 hitch is near the same of a good 5th wheel hitch and you still have your bed to utilize.

I hear people say no its not necessary with a 350 dually or heavy duty truck and that may be true under normal towing conditions until those heavy crosswinds hit the side of that 32 foot and up trailer. I've seen many videos of Duallys being turned around towing a TT so it does happen and it does happen to 5th wheels also. There is just no getting around wind.

I personally do not own one of those hitches (YET) but will purchase one the next time around as I have towed another trailer with one and they honestly do work very well.


2011 FORD F-150 FX4 CREW CAB ECO...
2018 Ford F-150 Max Tow Crew 6.5 3.5 Eco...
2013 Keystone Passport 2650BH, EQUAL-I-ZER 1K/10K

DutchmenSport

Indiana

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Posted: 08/08/19 01:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We went from a 35 foot TT pulled with a 1 ton diesel dualy and we used the Equal-i-zer 14,000 - 1400 weight distribution hitch. The trailer weighed in at 11,000 loaded. We had the trailer for 5 years and it handled flawlessly.

I strongly, strongly suggest getting a WD hitch system, even with your 3/4 ton truck, but in reality ... if you really want to part with your money, a Hensley is not "essential" and the only one. For your combination you are anticipating, the Equa-l-izer, ProRide, and Reese Dual Cam will work great for you and cost a LOT less.

About towing. We went from a 35 foot TT to a 41 foot 5er. We've had the 5er for nearly a year now and the difference between the two is now mute. In a lot of ways, the TT was easier. It didn't have automatic leveling systems and near the height the 5er has. The 5er has more sophisticated electronics and, in a lot of ways even after almost a year, I'm still learning how to tow it. Believe it or not, I can back into any campsite with no problem now. But backing into my own driveway freeks me out! The biggest difference between the two is the trailer tail end swing when making turns, especially sharp turns.

Given a comparison between towing TT and 5er, because my truck was the right one for both trailers, and because I had a good WD hitch with the TT, both tow equally as nice.

I strongly advise getting the WD hitch. But definitely get one that has built in sway control and don't go with one that requires you to use a separate friction sway control bar. FYI, Equal-I-zer 4 point systems are very easy to hitch with. Very easy.

Good luck with your decisions. I can only share from my own experiences. Yours may be completely different. Still, the right truck makes all the difference in the world.

Walaby

Georgia

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Posted: 08/08/19 05:09pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Before I got my 5er, I had a TT that was 34 foot and about 9000 lbs loaded (slightly higher probably). Towed it with a Ram 2500.

Yes, I beileve a WD is required at that point.

Yes, I am in agreement with Dutchmen Sport... there are multiple options. I used the Blue Ox Sway Pro, and was perfectly happy with it. If I remember correctly it was about $650 from eTrailer.com

Mike


Im Mike Willoughby, and I approve this message.
2017 Ram 3500 CTD (aka FRAM)
2019 GrandDesign Reflection 367BHS


Firetraveler

oregon

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Posted: 08/08/19 05:25pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Great information. Thanks for the help. I’ve been hearing a lot about the blu ox

bartlettj

Forest Grove, OR

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Posted: 08/08/19 05:35pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a 2012 2500HD diesel and I wouldn't hesitate to tow that with my truck, but I would use a good WDH for ride comfort, and replace the factory shocks with Bilstein if they are over 3 years old. The factory GM shocks last about as long as a set of tires.

I tow a 6k trailer with mine and it really doesn't break a sweat, but I do use a wdh to keep it from porpoising over rough roads.

I thought I wanted a 5th wheel but with 2 kids and 2 dogs the bed space on the truck gets used up.

Factory tow rating for bumper pull on a crew cab 2500HD with a Duramax is around 13500 lbs.

Sandia Man

Rio Rancho, NM

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Posted: 08/09/19 08:59am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Should be a decent towing combination, definitely need to have a high quality WDH with integrated sway control such as an Equalizer or similar variation from Reese or Husky. It would have to be a pretty small 5er if you were to go that route since pin weight is over 20% of rig weight consuming most if not all your 2200# payload capacity loaded for travel. Grand Design Reflection TTs are higher scale and have fifth wheel floor plans just on a single flat deck anyway, less storage and a longer towing profile are some negatives. Have a great time in your new TT!!!

badercubed

Canandaigua, NY

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Posted: 08/09/19 11:04am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I pulled a Hideout 30BHDS loaded to 9,500lbs give or take with a 2015 F-250 gasser. If I was staying local (within an hour and a half) and not going on a highway, I would just hook up and go with my 2-5/16" ball on my work pintle hitch. If I was going longer or on the highway with crosswinds, I used a Blue Ox Sway Pro.

I enjoyed everything about the combination.


2019 Apex Nano 208BHS
2018 GMC Canyon Crew Cab SLE

Been camping for 36 of my 37 years!

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