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Old 08-23-2015, 12:48 PM   #141
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One of the things I learned when racing motorcycles was it's difficult to know exactly "where the edge is", until you step over it.
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Staying with manufacturer stated weight and towing limits is one example of something we "can" exercise some control over. By deferring to the judgement of educated and professionally certified engineers, we likely improve our odds of success.
When you raced motorcycles, were they production bikes, or based on production bikes? Were they modified in any way?

If so, I was trying to reconcile what the manufacturer of those bikes said about racing, or modifying their product, and your position of staying within manufacturer's recommendations.

I suspect that perhaps you trusted your own judgement and made judgement calls, exactly like many here do with towing setups. I rode motorcycles for years, sometimes quickly, but never raced them. I don't have the skill set. But that doesn't mean that others don't have that skill set.

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Old 08-23-2015, 01:31 PM   #142
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There's no consensus in these arguments no matter what is presented. There are people posting strong opinions here, telling us how to do it, who have never towed an Airstream, never towed anything, or have very limited or no experience. Some come to boast and mock.

Many come here to discuss Airstreams, to learn something new. Anybody can read a label but that doesn't tell us an Airstream handles superior to a box trailer on solid axles. It doesn't tell us a Touareg handles better and is therefore safer than my Ram with similar dimensions and ratings. It doesn't tell us heavy pickup trucks have a history of crushed passenger cabs when rolling over, that independent suspension, stiff unibody Touaregs are less likely to roll over, and less likely to harm the occupants if they do. It doesn't tell us a Hensley hitch will stabilize any sway forces imposed on my Airstream before they happen.

There's more to safe Airstream towing than the label, and the label alone can lead to a very unsafe, properly rated combination. We can learn something here but there is a lot opposition to it.
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Old 08-23-2015, 01:37 PM   #143
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^^^^ I nominate Switz's above post as "highly recommended reading for those new to towing and choosing".

Well thought out, clearly articulated. A good example of a guy that has decided to be on the side of "I'm going to stay within stated limits".

You geniuses can't even read, can you? Find us those who go over axle/wheel/tire ratings. You've made no attempt to understand how things can work.

I use to hook up 23,000-lb trailers to trucks with GCWR of 20k. Means my gross was above 32,000-lbs. Think I got I was ever cited by DOT? Pulled off the road the many times I crossed state scales? Think the truck didn't make 300k miles down roads you can't imagine?

Or that we used cars decades back no where near as well built as today's, but that had custom hitch receivers to pull big TTs and did so reliably for 200k miles. All of it over "ratings".

Or can you geniuses explain why tow ratings on a number of vehicles dropped to nothing a few years back, and that whole classes aren't even tested? Why is that? Think they can't be set to tow reasonable loads?

Or maybe it's easier and more profitable to push Americans towards one class of TVs. Gee, we all know the profit motive never skews results. Especially when contradictory data is just ignored. A half century's worth. But that's ignored by not testing travel trailers. Easy, huh?

What experience do you have to offer? What testing have you done?

Why don't you nanny boys go back to minding your own business instead of drooling in public?
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Old 08-23-2015, 02:00 PM   #144
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JCL, all of our ( my son's and mine ) racing motorcycles were "production" bikes. Honda CBR600 and 929 for roadrace, Honda XR's for hare scrambles and enduro, Kawasaki KX for motocross.
To your point, yes, I would have run them modified, had we wanted to compete in "modified" classes. We chose to remain in "stock production" classes due to it being less expensive and more focussed on rider skill.

Slowmover......LOL .... "nanny boys and drooling in public".....ha ha ! I love it !!! Good ones.. I'll have to remember those lines ! Thanks, I always enjoy your posts !
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Old 08-23-2015, 03:32 PM   #145
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....snip....

I use to hook up 23,000-lb trailers to trucks with GCWR of 20k. Means my gross was above 32,000-lbs. Think I got I was ever cited by DOT? Pulled off the road the many times I crossed state scales? Think the truck didn't make 300k miles down roads you can't imagine?

....snip....
You're neglecting to mention a very important point here: you are a super hero...a god among truckers....while the rest of us mere mortals must struggle along with limited intelligence and meager physical abilities.

Big difference there....
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Old 08-23-2015, 05:20 PM   #146
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Opps, I went back and found what the owner posted , it was 7500# for their '84 34' AS International loaded for travel.

So make that 5000# Honda, 7500# AS = 12,500 # combined that's 4390 # over the Honda's GCVWR or basically adding another empty Honda to the weight of the rig. BTW his tongue weight is 880 #.

Now for the sake of the newbe who reads this stuff the new AS weigh about 2000# more empty.

This is the rig we're talking about.

So keep with in the T.V. manufactures specs and enjoy the ride.
It's really as simple and easy as that. Unless you're compelled to go to extremes, making things more difficult and complicated.

I don't see anyone recommending a 1 ton truck to pull a smaller Airstream.

In fact, to pull the largest and heaviest Airstream made, a 3/4 ton will likely do just fine and be well within manufacturer specification limits for cargo capacity and GCVWR - depending on the unique cargo needs of the individual owner. That's actually a great pairing of truck and trailer.

The only need to go with a 1 ton is if the individual had extra weight capacity needs (that the average Airstreamer doesn't have)... like hauling a few thousand rounds of ammunition in the bed of the truck for use at shooting events and such. Or hauling hundreds of pounds of specialized tools, or whatever... then the 1 ton would likely be a well-matched choice. Remember, too, that if a retracting metal bed cover or a full topper is put over the bed of the truck, that will eat into cargo carrying capacity as well, by up to a couple of hundred pounds.

The problem is that peoples' cargo requirements are different, as are the weights of their particular trailers. One Airstreamer may be a solo traveler with very little in the way of extra cargo to be transported... his needs with a 30' AS would likely be easily met with the 1/2 ton. Or, if his trailer was a 19' to 25', or so, his needs might be well met with a Toureg or Cayenne.

Not all 30' Airstreams weigh the same. A stripped down model has weights shown in factory literature. But if you opt for a second AC unit, full awnings all around, solar system, yada yada... that adds a good bit of weight that can cut deeply into a lighter tow vehicle's minimal range of payload capacity.

On the other hand, take the case of an Airstreamer who is a super-sized guy (say, 300#), with a suitably sized wife (say 210#), two kids at 80# each, a dog of 100#, wanting to take along a couple of inflatable rafts, an air compressor, large BBQ, four camp chairs, a pair of Honda i2000 generators, fuel for generators, a few firearms with ammunition to spare, fishing gear, an ample tool chest, camp tent for the kids. And this fellow has a new 30' International when loaded has a tongue weight of 1150#. To suggest that this family's towing needs could be safely met with a Toureg, Cayenne, or even a 1/2 ton truck is ludicrous! Such a family with a smaller 25' Airstream would still not be adequately served with a 1/2 ton truck. This family would be best served with at least a 3/4, more likely a 1 ton truck. Why does this cause so much angst and writhing among the people who insist that small SUVs are the perfect choice for towing Airstreams?

It's the Tow Vehicle generalities that people on this forum loosely toss around as if it were "sage-advice" that is absurd. Each family's needs are significantly different from other people's needs, that's why adherence to manufacturer's towing and cargo capacity weight ratings, and GCVWR is far more important than blindly doing what some other person says "works for them" on an internet forum.

A Toureg or Cayenne to pull a 25' or smaller Airstream may well fall within manufacturer recommended limits and not cause anyone any concerns - totally depending on the unique cargo weight requirements of the individual, of course.

A Toureg or Cayenne to pull a 30'+ Airstream, including a family group and a fair amount of stuff? That combination is marginal, at best, and could be a bad choice, especially if the individual has a large family and would like to bring along a moderate degree of cargo.

What's to argue about here?
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Old 08-23-2015, 05:28 PM   #147
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2015 Toureg Diesel Trailering Specs

Wt Distributing Hitch - Max Trailer Wt. (lbs)
7716

Dead Weight Hitch - Max Trailer Wt. (lbs)
7716

Wt Distributing Hitch - Max Tongue Wt. (lbs)
1157

Dead Weight Hitch - Max Tongue Wt. (lbs)
772

Maximum Trailering Capacity (lbs)
7716

MAXIMUM PAYLOAD**
1287 lbs.

So.... looking at these numbers... it looks like the 30' Airstream would come in very close to maxing out at the spec limits... with just the driver in the VW. Add in a few other family members, dog, and their attendant stuff, perhaps some tools, etc. and it looks like the Toureg is beyond, possibly well beyond capacity. Of course, one could still tow that way, but it wouldn't inspire any safety confidence in me to do so.
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Old 08-23-2015, 05:56 PM   #148
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Staying within the limits on the car or truck and camper is the safest way to go.I care about my family and the others on the road. Don't forget about all the weight of all the camping gear and water in the tank and the weight of yourself and family it adds up quickly. Good camping Rand
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Old 08-23-2015, 06:09 PM   #149
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"Many come here to discuss Airstreams, to learn something new. Anybody can read a label but that doesn't tell us an Airstream handles superior to a box trailer on solid axles. It doesn't tell us a Touareg handles better and is therefore safer than my Ram with similar dimensions and ratings. It doesn't tell us heavy pickup trucks have a history of crushed passenger cabs when rolling over, that independent suspension, stiff unibody Touaregs are less likely to roll over, and less likely to harm the occupants if they do. It doesn't tell us a Hensley hitch will stabilize any sway forces imposed on my Airstream before they happen."


Just as a data point (not an opinion), I responded to a wreck last week on the Interstate (I'm on a fire dept), and the Honda CRV rolled multiple times. Driver trapped and taken out on a backboard, passenger killed. (Probable cause was distracted driving).

Two days later at night, I responded to a wreck where a newer Dodge pickup rolled multiple times in almost the same place. The driver was out and walking around when I got there. No injuries. (Probable cause was distracted driving).

So there is some data.
My conclusion is that distracted driving is a big factor, but then so is the vehicle. Both vehicle and driver could be at fault in Airstream crashes.
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Old 08-23-2015, 06:17 PM   #150
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"Many come here to discuss Airstreams, to learn something new. Anybody can read a label but that doesn't tell us an Airstream handles superior to a box trailer on solid axles. It doesn't tell us a Touareg handles better and is therefore safer than my Ram with similar dimensions and ratings. It doesn't tell us heavy pickup trucks have a history of crushed passenger cabs when rolling over, that independent suspension, stiff unibody Touaregs are less likely to roll over, and less likely to harm the occupants if they do. It doesn't tell us a Hensley hitch will stabilize any sway forces imposed on my Airstream before they happen."


Just as a data point (not an opinion), I responded to a wreck last week on the Interstate (I'm on a fire dept), and the Honda CRV rolled multiple times. Driver trapped and taken out on a backboard, passenger killed. (Probable cause was distracted driving).

Two days later at night, I responded to a wreck where a newer Dodge pickup rolled multiple times in almost the same place. The driver was out and walking around when I got there. No injuries. (Probable cause was distracted driving).

So there is some data.
My conclusion is that distracted driving is a big factor, but then so is the vehicle. Both vehicle and driver could be at fault in Airstream crashes.
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Old 08-23-2015, 07:24 PM   #151
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What were they towing?
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Old 08-23-2015, 07:43 PM   #152
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Hey Doug I read my wife your ending to all your posts and she said "you can't handle the truth" A joke.This thread needs a little lighter tone.
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Old 08-23-2015, 08:37 PM   #153
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2015 Toyota Tundra, Towing capacity 6,400 to 10,500# in case anyone is curious.
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Old 08-23-2015, 09:04 PM   #154
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Hank, I was a fireman as well, but I never thought it made me an accident investigator. Your two selected accidents don't represent data, just opinion.
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