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Old 04-09-2013, 06:25 PM   #15
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1972 23' Safari
1956 16' Bubble
1947 22' Liner
Hillpoint , Wisconsin
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 287
I will chim in for a Duramax as well I have a 2007 2500 hd with just under 100K on it and its been a great truck. I pull a 24 ft enclosed car hauler with a 1969 Firebird in it and it has been a dream . I pulled it from WI to Vegas and back in 2010 with no problems and I also use it as my snow plow rig. I plan to run it to 250K. Its over kill for my 23 ft Avion but I am building a 1958 Apache with a 6.0 and auto overdrive to pull it.

2 Liners
2 Safaris
2 Flying Clouds
1 Bubble
and a partridge in a pear tree
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Old 04-09-2013, 07:27 PM   #16
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1998 34' Excella 1000
Arlington , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 41
I will also chim in for the 2500HD Duramax. We have a 2011 Chevy and a 1997 34' Classic and use the propride hitch and could not be happier with it's ability. From Texas to Idaho and back no problems with power what so ever. As someone else posted, driving a dulley on as a daily driver will be stiff and parking spaces are harder to find. I think you would do just fine with the 2500 in my opinion.

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Old 04-09-2013, 07:55 PM   #17
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2015 25' FB Flying Cloud
2012 23' FB Flying Cloud
2005 25' Safari
Santa Rosa Beach , Florida
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,002
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We now tow our 2005 25FB with a 2011 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 Duramax single rear wheel. We are also hauling a 3000# truck camper in the bed of the truck while towing the Airstream. We now have 50,000 miles on the Dmax. It works great,

SuEllyn & Brian McCabe
WBCCI #3628 -- AIR #14872 -- TAC #FL-7
2015 FC 25' FB (Lucy) with HAHA
2005 Suburban 2500 Quadrasteer (Olivia) & 2018 Silverado 2500 (Lillian)
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Old 04-09-2013, 07:58 PM   #18
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Fort Worth , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2006
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A pickup with IFS + rack & pinion steering as well as 4-whl disc brakes is the best choice when it comes to towing performance. Aftermarket changes such as best quality shock absorbers (such as KONI FSD); and inexpensive poly bushings on anti-roll bars, etc., all add up.

Live axle and dead steering (recirc ball) is no friend to knowing what is going on either due to the road surface or the forces acting on the TT. The words of many: "I didn't know it was back there" (yeah, no kidding). The TT can be pretty far off mark before the driver is aware of it. Seen this plenty of times (and hardly restricted to TT's; high winds acting on any long, tall trailer). Deadened isolation is not ones friend.

I'd go with a 3500 SRW truck. Or, at least compare the ride to the 2500. A DRW is overkill for any Airstream. Any number of penalties if it isn't needed to do the work for which it was designed. There is no "upside" otherwise.

Get the WD hitch dialled in on the scale (perfect the TV tire pressures) and a pickup is a fair TV.

And giiven the risk driving a pickup entails, then TT disc brakes and a VPP or PULLRITE hitch would be a help. 16" tires and LT tires on the TT as well. The TT is great . . it is the proposed TV type that needs all the help it can get.

As well, commercial tires from BRIDGESTONE such as the r250 for the TT, and something from the Duravis series for the TV would be my default comparison in researching. This is one place that deserves time and attention. There are tread designs that would work with 4WD, yet have quite good on-road traction. Commercial truck users are giving these very high marks (even over MICHELIN).

Good luck

1990 35' Silver Streak Sterling; 9k GVWR.
2004 DODGE Cummins 305/555; 6-manual; 9k GVWR.
Hensley Arrow. 12-cpm solo, 19-cpm towing (fuel)
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Old 04-09-2013, 08:39 PM   #19
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2012 27' Flying Cloud
W , New England
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 5,749
Originally Posted by slowmover View Post
...And giiven the risk driving a pickup entails, then TT disc brakes and a VPP or PULLRITE hitch would be a help.

You know, when I was researching hitch options, Pullrite was actually my first choice because a) it was the easiest for me to understand and b) its ACTUAL pivot point is the rear axle (upside down 5th wheel). Unfortunately, they don't make them for my 2013 Duramax - and I even asked them what it would take to let me be the guinea pig for this model year at a premium and they just weren't interested. Andersen seemed compelling for low cost and low weight - I've talked about my (mis-?)understanding of WD being optional for this truck and the 27FB so the sway control seemed the more important factor. But at the end of the day I went with the ProPride VPP because the idea of eliminating sway (vs reacting to it) was my ultimate goal. I think both the Pullrite and PP/Hensley achieve that goal.
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Old 04-10-2013, 04:25 PM   #20
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2007 25' Safari FB SE
Sugar Land , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 35
Well I don't have a GMC or Chevy but I do have many , many miles using a '02 Ford Excursion and now a '11 F350 SRW pulling my 25 Safari. Both are diesels and both worked well with my Reese Dual Cam hitch.

Your 31 Classic is a heavier TT but if you use a Hensley or ProPride hitch (once set up properly), I think a 3/4 ton will do fine.

Plan on spending some time at the scale and make room in your budget for a few of the "aftermarket" add-ons you will want.

Safe Travels, D
Dwight & Ellen + (the Beagles)
2011 F350 SRW King Ranch, 6.7L, 3.55 ELD, Ranchos, Hellwig w/ Reese Dual Cam & 1200# bars. 2007 Safari 25 FB SE (stock)
For Sale:2002 Excursion Ltd 4WD 7.3L; 3.73 LS; fully mod'ed
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Old 04-11-2013, 06:04 AM   #21
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2007 25' Classic
SW Florida , Florida
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 68
The 2011 3500 without any weight in the bed rides hard. Hooked up to the Airstream it rides a lot smoother. Trucks are a personal thing...I want to lower this truck with air ride. The Duramax combined with the Allison is a great combination. The individuals that I talked to with a 2500 series GM gasser loved their truck. One thing for sure the advantage economically for the diesel is quickly disappearing .... but on the other hand on a steep long grade the diesel will no doubt make you smile....

In the diesel like you stole it....
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Old 04-12-2013, 07:17 AM   #22
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2014 31' Classic
2015 23' International
2013 25' FB International
Apache Junction , Arizona
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 5,063
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The Kelderman front and rear airbag conversion I did lowered the pickup bed over 3" so the truck sits level. I can hit a dump switch and the rear air bag deflates lowering the tailgate another 3". As a short older person, I can load the generators more easily.

When loaded with stuff in the bed and cab and hitched up to the Airstream with the Hensley, the entire rig is level. I did install a Curt #15409 hitch rated 2,550 pounds to replace the stock unit rated 1,200 pounds as the Airstream tongue weight is 1,175 pounds not completely loaded. I also installed a front hitch, just in case.

The ride is much improved both empty and loaded. The front tires are inflated to 60 psi and the rear can be set to 70 psi per the door labels. These tire pressure settings are equal to the axle ratings. The ride is firmer when the rear tires are set to 70. The unladen rear tire setting can be 45 psi per the door label plate.

This airbag system is shown on their web site for all three major truck brands.

WBCCI Life Member 5123, AIR 70341, 4CU, WD9EMC

TV - 2012 Dodge 2500 4x4 Cummins HO, automatic, Centramatics, Kelderman level ride airbag suspension, bed shell

2014 31' Classic model 30 twin beds, 50 amp service, 900 watt solar system, Centramatics, Dill TPMS, disc brakes, 16" tires & wheels
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Old 04-13-2013, 05:26 AM   #23
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2007 25' Classic
SW Florida , Florida
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 68
Thank you on that info on the air bag system.
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Old 04-13-2013, 06:02 AM   #24
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2017 28' Tommy Bahama
Hot Springs Village , Arkansas
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 251
I am curious about your hitch system with the Duramax. I have one ordered, it is a 3/4 ton, and wondered if it will be too stiff for our 25 ft. Eddie Bauer. We currently have an Equalizer hitch with 1000 lb. bars.
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Old 04-14-2013, 06:42 AM   #25
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2007 25' Classic
SW Florida , Florida
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 68
Rick, I have a blue ox sway pro I think it is 1,000 lb bars. My 3500 is a lot stiffer than a 2500 and the trailer seems to ride very well and the truck with the trailer rides excellent. You are going to be impressed with the Duramax and Allison. Air ride is better in almost every way is the reason for possible upgrade.

I am going to add a boost gauge if possible to monitor actually how hard the Duramsax is working pulling the A/S.

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Old 04-14-2013, 11:27 AM   #26
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2014 25' FB International
2007 20' Safari SE
2005 19' Safari
Qualicum Beach , British Columbia
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 871
I'm not sure if you have to have a diesel to reply to this thread. I have been pulling our 2008 20 ft Safari SE since 2007 with our 2008 GMC HD1500 and the MAX tow Pkg. ( 6.2 gas).
It it a great package and will actually tow on the flat in 4 cyl. mode.
When not towing the mileage is better than I used to get with a V6 Sonoma, and towing power is more than satisfactory with the V.V.T engine.
We have just ordered a 2014 25FB CCD and I think we will have ample power to pull with the 4.10 gears.The only thing I'm going to do is upgrade the external trans
cooler for a heavier one.
We use a 10,000 Lb Equal-I-zer which may have been a bit heavy for the 20ft but should be fine for the 25.

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