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Old 06-16-2018, 09:38 AM   #15
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We are somewhat experienced Airstreamers (12 years/1,900 nights/180,000 miles of towing). We have had four tow vehicles, two gas and two Diesel. Two were 3/4 ton Suburbans and two pick-up trucks. One of these was a one ton long bed Silverado, and the other a 3/4 ton standard bed Silverado.

We are not full timers, but have been out in the Airstream 43% of our time over the last twelve years. We have been gone from home for as long as 109 days straight. We are currently writing this post from Arizona.

Here, in a nut shell is our tow vehicle experience. Because of our heavy travel schedule, we have always maintained two two vehicles at a time. Originally, we used two Suburban 2500s. Both had the 6.0 liter gasoline engine. These always did an adequate job of towing the Airstream in all situations. We have been towing a 25FB weighing 7,400# with a 900# tongue weight. In 2011 we added a one ton Silverado Diesel crew cab long bed. This move was mandated by the addition of an Outfitter truck camper that weighed 3,000#. We continued to tow the Airstream with the truck camper rig. The Diesel was not an option as we grossed about 19,000# going down the road. We were beyond the reasonable capabilities of any gas engine truck out there. We kept one of the Suburbans for our winter towing needs.

We kept this set-up until 2017 when we decided to go in a different direction. We sold the truck camper and towed with the 2011 Silverado for a while. We had never owned a Diesel before, and found its towing capabilities amazing. In October of last year, we decided to trade the 2011 Silverado (140,000 miles) on a new truck. After much consideration and soul searching, we traded for a 2018 Silverado 2500 crew cab standard bed with the Diesel engine. I had become spoiled by the Diesel's capabilities. Plus, we found the eight foot bed cumbersome.

The new truck is fitted with an aluminum topper that has a side tool box and access doors to make it very usable. It can store all of our stuff plus our Honda 3000 generator. I have included a few pictures of our topper rig on the new truck.

The bottom line on tow vehicles is that the engines last forever. It's the other stuff that starts breaking. We have been sidelined with all kinds of truck problems such as alternators, fan clutches, power steering motors, brake lines, computer control modules, power window switches, air conditioners, and other issues. Our poor old 2005 Suburban is closing in on 200,000 miles, and seems to have repair issues on a regular basis. Most recently I had to replace two of the door catches.

I hope that this information will help you in your tow vehicle decision making process. Good luck in your quest.

Brian
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Old 06-16-2018, 10:54 AM   #16
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For your limited mileage, the gasser will work. Certainly less expensive in the used market. The diesel will pull better. Remember to check the payload sticker on the drivers door jamb.
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Old 06-16-2018, 01:42 PM   #17
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That’s really my dilemma. If Toyota offered a 3/4 or 1 ton we wouldn’t be having this conversation. They never need repairs in my experience. I own 2 with close to 400k miles between them. So I’m looking for reliability issues on the big 3. I don’t need a diesel for what I’m planning, although down the road who knows. I want to keep 15% or more headroom in my TVs tow capacity and my payload thus the same on my TVs gcwr.
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Old 06-16-2018, 03:48 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by moosetags View Post
...The new truck is fitted with an aluminum topper that has a side tool box and access doors to make it very usable. It can store all of our stuff plus our Honda 3000 generator...

Your truck is one of the most well though-out tvís Iíve ever seen.
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Old 06-16-2018, 03:58 PM   #19
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We have just traded in our Classic 30 and 2500HD diesel for a Pleasure-Way Class B. At oir age, time to downsize!

But for my Money that truck was just a perfect match - we had a crew cab version that was great for carrying more valuable stuff we wanted to keep inside, and we had a Leer cap on the regular length bed to protect stuff that wasn't so important. That combination worked very well for us for ten years use!

Even this truck was a bit of a chore sometimes to park, and I don't think I would have wanted anything any longer as it was also our daily driver!

That was about the only down side! (of course now we will have a van that is even longer - but at least better forcamping in state parks! And we have s small car to drive every day!)

Best of luck with whatever you decide!

Brian
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Old 06-16-2018, 05:20 PM   #20
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I saw a F250 Ford gas on the gauntlet test. It did very very well. You might want to check that out. The only difference between and F250 and 350 from what I understand are the springs. I have a friend who has an F350 and he says he would never want it for a daily driver. Way too stiff. He uses it for towing his work equipment. I think an F250 is a much more smooth ride from what I’ve been told. Something to think about. My next truck will be an F250. I have an F150 right now. It does fine for towing my 28’. But the F250 is better on payload, and when I retire in a few years want to do more traveling and that means more stuff to pack.
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Old 06-16-2018, 06:33 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daquenzer View Post
I saw a F250 Ford gas on the gauntlet test. It did very very well. You might want to check that out. The only difference between and F250 and 350 from what I understand are the springs. I have a friend who has an F350 and he says he would never want it for a daily driver. Way too stiff. He uses it for towing his work equipment. I think an F250 is a much more smooth ride from what I’ve been told. Something to think about. My next truck will be an F250. I have an F150 right now. It does fine for towing my 28’. But the F250 is better on payload, and when I retire in a few years want to do more traveling and that means more stuff to pack.
I have seen the Tfl truck video and have test drove one that had everything I would want but hadn’t decided yet. Still gathering info. Thanks.
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Old 06-17-2018, 01:21 PM   #22
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GMC 1500, w/ 6.2, Max tow pac, for 27FB?

Has anyone towed a 27FB with GMC 6.2 max tow, 4x4 Crew Cab short wheel base? What is your experience? West of Miss. river and into Rocky Mountains. I like softer ride, lower profile, shorter turning and maneuvering.
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