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Old 04-21-2013, 08:19 AM   #43
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I see that you too are a follower of the evil genius....
Yes. Also the 80/20 rule. One must be practical.
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Old 04-21-2013, 08:42 AM   #44
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I see a tow vehicle as an engine and drive train. I picked mine because it could handle towing loads with plenty of room to spare. It does the job with plenty of margin. I am happy with what I have. I don't think I will find a better tow vehicle for what I have in mine. I don't think it could be replaced with a smaller vehicle. I would not tow a 7000lb trailer with a tow vehicle rated for 3500lb. I plan on keeping mine for at least another 10 yrs maybe another 20 yrs. I don't think a min-van is going to last that long towing twice what it is designed to tow. In fact, you probably won't see any of them in 20 yrs. I bet there will still be plenty of Excursions on the road in 20yrs.

Perry
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Old 04-21-2013, 09:07 AM   #45
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Rumor has it AndyT will have an Airstream/small tow vehicle set up and possibly available for test drives at Alumapalooza this year. Maybe some people that are on the fence as to whether they want a car or minivan to tow their Airstream can take a couple of spins around the block.
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Old 04-21-2013, 09:14 AM   #46
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I see a tow vehicle as an engine and drive train. I picked mine because it could handle towing loads with plenty of room to spare. It does the job with plenty of margin. I am happy with what I have. I don't think I will find a better tow vehicle for what I have in mine. I don't think it could be replaced with a smaller vehicle. I would not tow a 7000lb trailer with a tow vehicle rated for 3500lb. I plan on keeping mine for at least another 10 yrs maybe another 20 yrs. I don't think a min-van is going to last that long towing twice what it is designed to tow. In fact, you probably won't see any of them in 20 yrs. I bet there will still be plenty of Excursions on the road in 20yrs.

Perry
We all have our reasons for choosing the TV that we use. I think it's excellent that you have a long term plan for yours and I don't doubt that you'll achieve your aim.

I'm fairly certain that my 2011 Sienna wouldn't last twenty years even if it had never towed at all; modern cars are just not built to last and there are sound industrial and economic reasons for that. There's no doubt that towing will put extra pressure on parts of my TV and that I may end up replacing things sooner than a non-towing owner, but that's all part of my long term plan. We only get a six month season up here in the Great White North and even then we don't travel all the time because we're not yet retired. I reckon about one third of my total mileage is towing but for that other two thirds I get a comfortable car that will return 28 mpg (US); over the life of the car I reckon I can afford to replace things should they wear out.

I don't concern myself too much about the fabled 3,500lb tow rating, I mean, how can you express what a TV is capable of in a simple measurement of weight? Towing is about so much more than weight. The proof, if it's needed, is in the real world experience of my TV and many others. We're not upside down in ditches, transmissions are not dropping out and hitches are not falling off. We all seem to stop our rigs quite successfully and we travel thousands of trouble-free miles every year. Nope, I'm content with my choice of TV, it suits my needs at the moment and it clearly works.

Now, if you want my essay on the fantasy of tow ratings I can post that later
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Old 04-21-2013, 09:38 PM   #47
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Have we left out those those who are using an Escape on their Odyssey?

Hi Matt

We have set up a lot of the old generation 3.0 Litre Escapes on smaller Airstreams and other Lite trailers. They are dramatically better if you change to a lower profile tire.

The 2.0 Litre Turbo intriques me but I have not towed with one. Your Airstream is very easy to tow so I don't see it haveing any performance issues but fuel mileage towing may not be as good as say an Edge with a 3.5 Litre. On the other hand it may be dramatically better I just don't know yet. We towed quite a lot with a 2005 PT Cruiser convertable with a 2.4 Litre Turbo, it was a lot of fun but it was never a fuel mizer. Engine technology has progressed a great deal since then.

In Europe they have been towing extensively with 2.0 Litre Turbo's for many years now, their trailers have more air drag than an Airstream, espessially yours.

We set up a Mercedes GLk last week which has a 2.14 Litre 4 cylinder deisel. 369 torque and 200 Horse power. Her in Canada it is not much more expensive than a 2.0 turbo Escape. Not as good looking though.

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Old 04-21-2013, 10:11 PM   #48
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Uh. Half of my attorney clients are personal injury lawyers and I can just see them salivating over this thread when Andy T's customers kill or disfigure someone.

Towing liability for overweight loads:


If you are involved in an accident while towing an oversized load where people were injured, you have exposed yourself to liability for negligence for towing beyond your vehicle’s maximum capacity. From;

http://www.randolphwolf.com/blog/tow...rweight-loads/

As to an earlier comment re; commercial vehicles
It's VERY illegal (state and federal law prohibits) commercial vehicles from being overweight. A PI attorneys DREAM.
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Old 04-22-2013, 07:33 AM   #49
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Since these folks are in Canada, how do the laws differ there? They may not have as many sue happy lawyers. What is legal in Canada may not be legal here in the states. I am sure Andrew T knows how these laws affect his business. So maybe the differences in laws have alot to do with this trend of small tow vehicles and large trailers in Canada. There may also be some serious tax benefits to having a smaller vehicle. I expect larger vehicles are taxed differently than consumer vehicles. The taxes in Canada may make it harder to have more than one vehicle. I have 4 and that does not even include my motorcycles.

Perry
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Old 04-22-2013, 08:22 AM   #50
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I wish someone could produce a documented case establishing precedent where someone was found liable for exceeding a manufacturer's recommended towing capacity. But, since they can't, I'll stay with the belief that a properly modified vehicle can be made to do work it wasn't designed for, like any piece of machinery.
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Old 04-22-2013, 08:55 AM   #51
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Since these folks are in Canada, how do the laws differ there? They may not have as many sue happy lawyers. What is legal in Canada may not be legal here in the states. I am sure Andrew T knows how these laws affect his business. So maybe the differences in laws have alot to do with this trend of small tow vehicles and large trailers in Canada. There may also be some serious tax benefits to having a smaller vehicle. I expect larger vehicles are taxed differently than consumer vehicles. The taxes in Canada may make it harder to have more than one vehicle. I have 4 and that does not even include my motorcycles.

Perry
Hi Perry,

For what it's worth, driving and tax laws don't differ greatly between the US States and Canadian Provinces. Anyway, it's not a legal issue as tow ratings, by their nebulous nature, are not legally enforceable - have a look at State or Provincial towing regulations and you'll find that no mention is made of the tow rating. Overloading of a vehicle is illegal, of course, but that is measured using the more accurately defined axle, tire and Gross Vehicle Weight ratings.

I'm not sure why RV people in the US seem resistant to exploring the wider options available when selecting a tow vehicle; it's a complex issue I think.
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Old 04-22-2013, 09:04 AM   #52
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I wish someone could produce a documented case establishing precedent where someone was found liable for exceeding a manufacturer's recommended towing capacity. But, since they can't, I'll stay with the belief that a properly modified vehicle can be made to do work it wasn't designed for, like any piece of machinery.
To prove any liability you would first have to show that the tow rating on the which the claim was based was properly defined and measurable, that it was exceeded and that said excess had some bearing on the issue at hand. The law makers know that tow ratings can't be measured and I think the liability lawyers know it, too.
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Old 04-22-2013, 09:55 AM   #53
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Hi Perry,

For what it's worth, driving and tax laws don't differ greatly between the US States and Canadian Provinces. Anyway, it's not a legal issue as tow ratings, by their nebulous nature, are not legally enforceable - have a look at State or Provincial towing regulations and you'll find that no mention is made of the tow rating. Overloading of a vehicle is illegal, of course, but that is measured using the more accurately defined axle, tire and Gross Vehicle Weight ratings.

I'm not sure why RV people in the US seem resistant to exploring the wider options available when selecting a tow vehicle; it's a complex issue I think.
Steve,

A question back to you...

Are there any weight tickets proving that a loaded for camping Odyssey, say towing a 25' AS is not exceeding the factory stated ratings?

From published Odyssey specs.

Max Trailer Weight
3500lbs.(TV Empty with one 150lb driver)

2,833 lbs. front GAWR
Front Gross Axle Weight Rating

3,197 lbs. rear GAWR
Rear Gross Axle Weight Rating

5,952 lbs. GVWR
Gross Vehicle Weight Rating *

I know from tickets that with the WD set our 25'r adds 1080lbs to the rear axle.

Bob
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Old 04-22-2013, 11:18 AM   #54
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I wish many RV dealers would their towing rigs out the door as well prepared as Andy Thomson. Take a look at some of the stuff going down the road, their weight distribution/sway control systems (if they even have any), unreinforced hitches, inadequate tires.

Someone asks about a light tow vehicle, Andrew Thomson comes up, and the thread immediately becomes cluttered with warnings and goofy legal opinions. He has been doing hundreds of these things for years with no evidence of the predicted tragedy or arrest as a result, that any of us have seen here (and there has been plenty of googling going on trying to find it, you can bet).

I don't agree with everything Andrew T. does but so what? I still want to learn from his experience, rather than this endless legal crap tossed carelessly about.

doug k
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Old 04-22-2013, 12:15 PM   #55
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Uh. Half of my attorney clients are personal injury lawyers and I can just see them salivating over this thread when Andy T's customers kill or disfigure someone.

Towing liability for overweight loads:

If you are involved in an accident while towing an oversized load where people were injured, you have exposed yourself to liability for negligence for towing beyond your vehicle’s maximum capacity. From;

http://www.randolphwolf.com/blog/tow...rweight-loads/

As to an earlier comment re; commercial vehicles
It's VERY illegal (state and federal law prohibits) commercial vehicles from being overweight. A PI attorneys DREAM.
Either your TV setup is safe, or it is not. If you made your lifestyle decisions based on the threat of being sued, you would never leave your home. And you would never have a home because someone might hurt themselves upon your property, and there you are again. If you tow with a setup you know, or should know, is unsafe then you should be held liable, and may God have mercy on your wretched soul.

Andrew T is an internationally recognized expert on towing safety. There are probably others, but none are as well published or well known (excluding all the experts in this forum, of course). It is Andrew's business and he has been successful at it for many years. Following his advice decreases any questions of liability rather than increases them. PI attorneys know that there is settlement value in any lawsuit so there will always be lawsuits until we get smarter with tort reform. But that won't happen because we have the greatest legal system in the world, don't we?

Andrew doesn't need me to explain all of the advantages of a properly configured van or SUV over a 3/4 ton pickup as a TV; he does does very well on his own. But let's try to give the legal liability scare tactics arrest for a while, can we? Towing with a small TV is kind of like gay marriage; if you oppose it, then don't do it.
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Old 04-22-2013, 12:24 PM   #56
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google,googling,googled

no proof.

Bob
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