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Open Roads Forum  >  Tow Vehicles

 > Need advise on which new truck - 1/2 ton or 3/4 ton?

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Snowwolfe

East Tennessee

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Posted: 09/03/20 09:18am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As far as entering the truck, if you stay with the higher trim options you can add "automatic" running boards. These will extend and retract when you open the doors. In my experience they will drop lower than the fixed style of running boards making it easier to enter.
Its a lot cheaper to order the truck with these than to add them later. Usually costs about $1K as factory option or pay $1500 plus install after the fact. The ones from the factory will have a 3 year warranty as well.

jodiwer

AZ

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Posted: 09/03/20 10:01am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lot's of advice to consider - this has been very helpful. Since we won't be traveling until spring, we're going to take our time making this decision. We have never bought a new vehicle - we always buy used so that will give us time to find a good one. My husband says that if we get a 3/4 ton, we will get the electric running board that drops down lower than the other ones - thanks Me Again for that tip.

To those who suggested using the Tundra to tow - we looked up the towing capacity of our specific truck by VIN and it is 6800 so way too low for this rig. From what we have read, one should never tow more that 80% of the tow capacity of a vehicle for safety. So we would need at minimum a rating of 8750 and would prefer much more. We will also watch the payload as suggested if we decide on a 1/2 ton.

And a note to Lwiddis - I may not be the primary driver but I will drive it a lot and thankfully, my husband sees me as a partner in decisions such as this. And he is the voice behind me in this discussion.


2019 F150 XLT Ecoboost, 3.5L V6 4x4, Max Towing package
2021 Rockwood Roo 23IKSS hybrid trailer
DH & I are boondockers thanks to our solar panels. Summer with our bicycles & kayak; winter with our skis & snowboards.

Sjm9911

New Jersey

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Posted: 09/03/20 10:16am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Nice thing woth the new trucks, no matter if you get a 1/2 or 3/4 is to get the back up hitch camara. I think on the chevys its standerd on the 2500s. I would never again buy anthing that does not have this. It so easy to line up the trailer and hook up. It has the back up camra that lines up the hitch, then you can switch to an o erhead hitch veiw to put the ball exactly where you want it. Addtionally it automatically hits the e break for you so you dont rock. It also cycles through the lights so you can check them by yourself on the TT. Check out the new rigs , and see whats good for you guys. Have fun!


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patperry2766

Saginaw Texas

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Posted: 09/03/20 11:07am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Since you're getting a hybrid, here are a couple of suggestions to be able to keep it cooler during the summer months, plus block out the light if your late sleepers.

Company called pop us gizmos makes bunk end covers to help shield the bunks from the summer heat and we cut and put reflectix in the bunk end windows, again for the same reasons.

Those two things alone will keep you about 10-15 deg cooler in the summer. We have a pop-up and it has made a world of difference for us


Courage is the feeling you have right before you fully understand the situation

Sjm9911

New Jersey

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Posted: 09/03/20 12:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

patperry2766 wrote:

Since you're getting a hybrid, here are a couple of suggestions to be able to keep it cooler during the summer months, plus block out the light if your late sleepers.

Company called pop us gizmos makes bunk end covers to help shield the bunks from the summer heat and we cut and put reflectix in the bunk end windows, again for the same reasons.

Those two things alone will keep you about 10-15 deg cooler in the summer. We have a pop-up and it has made a world of difference for us

+ 1 for the gizmos and reflectix. Thay also work to keep the tent ends warmer in the winter. So its a win win. Bear with them if ordering though, the covid has everyone getting them and they are a bit backed up. But worth waiting for.

gmckenzie

BC

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Posted: 09/03/20 12:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

jodiwer wrote:

Lot's of advice to consider - this has been very helpful. Since we won't be traveling until spring, we're going to take our time making this decision. We have never bought a new vehicle - we always buy used so that will give us time to find a good one. My husband says that if we get a 3/4 ton, we will get the electric running board that drops down lower than the other ones - thanks Me Again for that tip.

To those who suggested using the Tundra to tow - we looked up the towing capacity of our specific truck by VIN and it is 6800 so way too low for this rig. From what we have read, one should never tow more that 80% of the tow capacity of a vehicle for safety. So we would need at minimum a rating of 8750 and would prefer much more. We will also watch the payload as suggested if we decide on a 1/2 ton.



Payload matters more than the brochure tow rating, but both Ford and GM have 1/2 ton trucks with more than 2000 lbs payload and well over 10K rated towing. Just need them optioned right.

As far as a 3/4 ton, don't dismiss a single rear wheel one ton when looking. For the last few years, they are pretty mush the same except the one ton has one more big rear leaf and has more payload. But ride is similar (at least for Ford and GM, not sure about Ram). But yeah, running boards needed (my wife needs them on our 1/2 ton). You don't need a one ton for what you have, but hey. That may change too [emoticon]


2015 GMC Sierra 4x4 CC SB Max Trailer
2010 Cougar 30RKS

parker.rowe

Delaware

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Posted: 09/03/20 01:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We pulled our similar weight hybrid for about 4 years with a 255hp 1996 Suburban half ton.

We have since moved to our "new" 97 3/4 ton Suburban, 290hp big block. Huge improvement, but the old 1500 mostly only struggled on hills.

My FIL towed a version of the Roo 235 with his 04 Tahoe 5.3 for years, now they have a similar size/weight hard side with the same truck.

Honestly, I think any of the modern half tons properly equipped would do the job. The are vastly superior to our old 1500 Suburban.


2015 Starcraft TravelStar 239TBS 6500 GVWR
1997 GMC Suburban K2500 7.4 Vortec/4.10
1977 Kawasaki KZ1000


spoon059

Just north of D.C.

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Posted: 09/04/20 09:02am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

OP, lots of good advice here.

Most half tons will easily pull a hybrid trailer and stuff for 2 people.

You said you guys will be pulling 12 months out of the year. A half ton is designed for occasional light towing. A 3/4 or 1 ton is designed to be worked to the max capabilities every day of the year. If I was planning on towing 12 months out of the year, I would get a bigger truck even though you don't necessarily "need" the payload or tow ratings of the bigger truck (at least not right now!) For the minimal price difference, you are getting substantially more truck. Heavier frame, brakes, wheels/tires, cooling system, etc. Your towing experience will be much more comfortable in a heavier truck as well. You'll get less push/pull in a heavier truck then a lighter truck.

Higher end trucks with the telescoping running boards are very nice. One of the guys in our camping group has a higher end F350 dually with the automatic running boards, they make it super easy to climb in. The ride comfort of these newer trucks is spectacular too. My coil suspension Ram is very smooth, especially towing. That F350 dually I mentioned earlier is almost unbelievable how smooth it rides.

A half ton might work, but a 3/4 or 1 ton will do it so much better in every facet you can imagine. Good luck, drive safe and enjoy camping!


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2015 Jayco 29QBS

Cummins12V98

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Posted: 09/04/20 09:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You will spend $$$ upgrading the 1/2 ton to do the job SAFELY like "D" or "E" tires and then there are air springs to consider.......

People 99% of the time go to a larger RV so be prepared for that.


2015 RAM LongHorn 3500 Dually CrewCab 4X4 CUMMINS/AISIN RearAir 385HP/865TQ 4:10's
37,800# GCVWR "Towing Beast"

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Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 09/04/20 10:02am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Y’all have probably succeeded in confusing yet another new member.
Given especially statements like it’s unsafe without D or E tires!


"Yes Sir, Oct 10 1888, Those poor school children froze to death in their tracks. They did not even find them until Spring. Especially hard hit were the ones who had to trek uphill to school both ways, with no shoes." -Bert A.

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