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Old 10-30-2012, 09:50 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Alumaholic View Post
Condoluminium and AirHeadsRus make valid and instructive observations. Condo says, "we can hold 55 which seems a very reasonable option."
For me, being able to hold 55 is not a reasonable option, it's dangerously under-powered.
For others, being under-powered is smugly self-righteous.
So, a great deal will depend on you and what you consider a safe and effective towing capacity.
Ken,

I'm one of the smugly self-righteous people, although it's not because I feel my TV is underpowered. Quite the contrary, actually, as I think my TV's 263 HP is more than adequate. I can tow comfortably at 60-65 mph and don't mind a bit if I lose some of that speed on a hill. I guess that's me being smugly self-righteous, eh?

Seriously though, I don't see the correlation between going faster and staying safer, especially when towing a few tons of trailer around. The faster you go, the more momentum you have; get a problem and everything is magnified with speed, including the dreaded trailer sway. Have a mishap at 55 mph and you're far more likely to walk away than you are if it happens at 75 mph.

I'm aware that there is a school of thought that says you should be able to maintain the speed of those around you on the road; that way, people don't get stuck behind you, have to slow down and therefore get frustrated. Indeed, there are sections of highway that have posted minimum speeds, and that's fine, but I don't know that anyone should feel pressured to drive faster than they are comfortable with (given the posted minimum), especially when towing; towing imposes, or should impose, a greater margin of required safety on you and therefore should require a lower speed than the unencumbered vehicles around you.

If that's being smugly self-righteous then I'm happy to be so because to me, it's safer.

Not safety related, but keeping the speed down also keeps your gas mileage down, ever important at today's gas prices.

So in assessing trailer/TV combos, I'd always suggest to the OP (as others have) that he shouldn't be too concerned about weight, power and speed.
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Old 10-30-2012, 10:03 PM   #16
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There is some comment about tongue weight as though it all is added to truck payload. It's not, the weight distribution hitch will transfer roughly 1/3 of tongue weight to the trailer axles.

Payload in the truck bed is often optional stuff, you can adjust it as needed.

Bottom line is the bottom line. You have the truck and it has plenty of capacity for your 25'; a larger truck is a waste of money and a smaller trailer will make little difference. Your truck is a good match for a 25' Airstream.

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Old 10-30-2012, 10:42 PM   #17
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After stressing over TV/TT combination myself, and reading posts by others who did the same, I can certainly relate to your perceived dilemma. After towing my 22' AS over 800 miles (including several Rocky Mountain passes) with a mid-size SUV, however, I found that I was unnecessarily concerned. Granted my SUV does have 450hp/450lb ft, but I found that I never used all that power and easily maintained highway speeds. I would not hesitate to tow a 25 or 27 foot AS with my SUV. The aerodynamics, light weight and even distribution of the weight makes the AS worth the extra money over other TT's--they are easy to tow!

FWIW, I believe the handling of your TV is more important than its power, especially the stability of the rear suspension. I do agree with the previous comments about having stiff sidewall tires and WD hitch. If you go with those recommendations, I'd say you have more than enough TV to tow the 25-footer of your choice.
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Old 10-31-2012, 12:41 AM   #18
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Hi, slightly mentioned, but newer trucks don't need the 3:73 gears because of the gearing in the six speed automatics. [four speeds definately need 3:73's]
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Old 10-31-2012, 02:02 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Condoluminum View Post
Bottom line is you should look at Chevrolet documentation of YOUR truck version and their calculation of tow capacity
This is the best advice you will get! IMHO
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Old 11-03-2012, 10:47 PM   #20
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Don't really feel smug or self-righteous, so can't be me..

Probably should clarify that our typical towing speed is 60-65... Slowing to 55 is typical for climbing 6% to 8% grades, like the Grapevine southbound... Hard to imagine dropping to posted towing speed limit up a hill that steep is unsafe...

As for handling, good tires and correct pressures in tow vehicle are critical as well as suspension and mass..
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Old 11-04-2012, 01:25 AM   #21
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We tow a 2011 27' FC with a 10+ year old Suburban 1500 powered with a 5.3 ltr engine. Our last three-week excursion included cresting passes on Hwy 70 that exceeded 7,000 ft. We took the highest--7,900 ft--at 50 mph with the engine running 2700 rpm. I've found the grade to be more important than the altitude.

Don't exchange your TV until you've tried it in some steep mountain passes. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised. I've been.
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Old 11-04-2012, 01:37 AM   #22
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Gotta add a couple comments to my last post ....

We put vented rotors on the front wheels and we've never had brake fade. It's an inexpensive safety upgrade.

We've found in the Southwest that high altitude, mountain, two lane roads very often have passing lanes every couple miles. So when we're cruising up a long, steep grade at 40 mph, the passing lanes let the faster travelers get by before long lines build up behind us.

We have a good WD hitch, properly set up; it's takes a lot of stress out of towing. The AS tracks like it's on rails.
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Old 11-08-2012, 08:49 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by dkottum View Post
There is some comment about tongue weight as though it all is added to truck payload. It's not, the weight distribution hitch will transfer roughly 1/3 of tongue weight to the trailer axles.

Payload in the truck bed is often optional stuff, you can adjust it as needed.

Bottom line is the bottom line. You have the truck and it has plenty of capacity for your 25'; a larger truck is a waste of money and a smaller trailer will make little difference. Your truck is a good match for a 25' Airstream.

doug k
Setting it up correctly (hitch, tires, weights) is all that is wanted to make that good match.

Frontal area means more than weight for highway performance (low aerodynamic resistance, the A/S advantage).

Weight comes into play in acceleration & deceleration. 0-60 times of 20-seconds are an ancient measure of "adequate". And it would never concern me to climb a grade at a slow speed (relative to solo cars) at a higher engine rpm (under redline) as that is what it is designed to do. And for many thousands of miles without concern.

So long as the vehicle is a good match for non-towing duties it can otherwise be a good tow vehicle with attention to details in setting up the rig.

FWIW, an A/S trailer can get through a slalom course behind the best-handling tow vehicles faster than can a pickup truck solo. Not to mention stop faster. Anti-lock brakes, roll control, etc, all make pickups better than they used to be. And the changes in the drivetrain certainly make this better yet.



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Old 11-15-2012, 09:19 AM   #24
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Not to over simplify this, but ... Mass of the travel trailer does make a difference in emergency maneuvering - it is not just the exposed frontal area; ask any pilot.The importance of TV mass vs TT mass is underestimated when mostly operating on the straight and level ... even excluding considerations for tires, brakes, WDH, hp/torque, gearing, and suspension. There are some great vids of a relativly lightweight SUV pulling an AS through a slalom course ... but it is on level ground. Compound the forces acting on the TV and TT when descending a hill and the picture changes. Few SUVs have brakes ready for the job. Our Wrangler SUV is great for occassional pulling of the AS, but is not up to the job of hauling a tandem axle loaded sailboat trailer. The AS falls somewhere in between. YMMV.
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:39 AM   #25
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Ken,

I'm one of the smugly self-righteous people, although it's not because I feel my TV is underpowered. Quite the contrary, actually, as I think my TV's 263 HP is more than adequate. I can tow comfortably at 60-65 mph and don't mind a bit if I lose some of that speed on a hill. I guess that's me being smugly self-righteous, eh?
Not sure I understand your point, Mr. Toad.
If you can tow comfortably at at 65 mph, that puts you out of the "holding at 55 mph" class and right where I advocate all Airstreamers be able to tow. It is very important to be able to keep up with the flow of traffic.
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Old 11-15-2012, 01:41 PM   #26
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So does that mean if the traffic is moving at 80mph, you should drive 80?
I don't think so. As far as I'm concerned 60 to 65 is as fast as you can safely drive. Even slower if the TV is not a good match for the trailer. For example; If the brakes fail to operate on the trailer (perhaps you forgot to plug it in) or due to an electrical or mechanical problem. The TV must be capable of stopping the rig. You may be able to tow the Space Shuttle, but try stopping it going down hill. An extreme example; but to the point.
To me it's like people who drive too fast in slippery conditions. Everything is fine, until they have to stop or maneuver suddenly.
I'm sure the is some physicist out there the can do the " object in motion" thing and tell us how much more energy is stored in a 5,000 to 10,000 trailer moving at 80mph as opposed to 60mph. Not to mention the weight of the TV.
I'll drive at 60mph max and let the meatheads go on by.
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Old 11-15-2012, 01:57 PM   #27
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Thanks Twinkie

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So does that mean if the traffic is moving at 80mph, you should drive 80?
No I don't advocate driving 80.
Read any of my numerous posts on the topic, and you will see that I advocate being able to maintain 65 mph.
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Old 11-15-2012, 04:51 PM   #28
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I have yet to drive on a freeway where I would be keeping up with traffic driving 60 or 65. Slow vehicles stay in the right lane for a reason.
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