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Old 07-25-2013, 02:36 PM   #1
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Hello from Newbie

Hi Everyone,
Very new here,
I posted this in another part of the forum which may have been the wrong place.
So anyway we purchased a 2006 23ft Safari which we hope to pick up on Saturday. We are coming from a small TT, a T@B which our 2000 Toyota Tacoma towed easily. Our Tacoma is rated for 5000 lbs. This is a temporary TV, we are looking to buy something bigger.
In reading everything it looks like we need the electric brake controller. Can we tow her home for about 50 miles on mostly flat terrain? Will it ruin our TV? The previous owner towed with a Honda Ridgeline which is also rated at 5000lb.
Are there other factors which I should know about before we try to tow her home?
Thanks for any insight you can give me.

Hope to attend lots of rallies and gatherings. We are social campers as the T@B group is a very social group and we like to meet new people in addition to just the two of us camping.
Beth (and Pete)
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Old 07-25-2013, 04:07 PM   #2
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Towing 50 miles is not the issue here--the problem is getting everything stopped in a safe manner if you need to stop in a hurry because of traffic, etc.

My attitude is that if I'm going to move more than 5 FEET I hook up everything including the brake controller. Have a look at the eTrailer (www.etrailer.com--as I remember) site for brake controllers and wiring harness adapters for your vehicle.

Way better to be safe than sorry...
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Old 07-25-2013, 04:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonkitty View Post
So anyway we purchased a 2006 23ft Safari which we hope to pick up on Saturday. We are coming from a small TT, a T@B which our 2000 Toyota Tacoma towed easily. Our Tacoma is rated for 5000 lbs. This is a temporary TV, we are looking to buy something bigger.
In reading everything it looks like we need the electric brake controller. Can we tow her home for about 50 miles on mostly flat terrain? Will it ruin our TV? The previous owner towed with a Honda Ridgeline which is also rated at 5000lb.
Are there other factors which I should know about before we try to tow her home?
Four things actually govern your effective towing capacity.
1 - Receiver rated capacity. You've got that covered, at 5000 pounds.
2 - Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR) minus your tow vehicle's actual weight— or if you don't know its actual weight, be conservative and use the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR).
3 - The laws of your state.
4 - Your vehicle's owner's manual requirements.

Using my own case as an example, I have an Airstream Interstate motorhome. Receiver rated capacity is 7,500 pounds. So far, so good.
GCWR is 15,250 pounds. I haven't weighed my Interstate fully loaded, so I don't know its actual weight, but GVWR is a whopping 11,030 pounds. So based on these numbers, I can tow at least 4,220 pounds, even if the Interstate is fully loaded. In Louisiana where I live, any trailer over 3000 pounds requires brakes on every trailer tire. But, my Interstate owner's manual says that every trailer over 1000 pounds requires its own brakes, because the vehicle brakes aren't designed to stop the full GCWR by themselves.

So, in my case, I can tow anything less than 4,220 pounds with no worries, over that, I need to weigh my Interstate first to find the actual towing capacity, but not to exceed 7,500 pounds no matter what. I need to have brakes on any trailer over 1,000 pounds, even though the state only requires them on trailers over 3,000 pounds.

Makes sense? Your numbers will work out differently, of course, but for your own safety, you need to go through a similar analysis.
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Old 07-25-2013, 05:09 PM   #4
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The Tekonsha Prodigy RF brake controller works without any brake control wires between the vehicles. I used one in my Mercedes when towing our 25FB trailer home from the dealership.
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Old 07-26-2013, 06:37 AM   #5
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Thank you all for your replies. I wasn't thinking right since I am so excited about taking our trailer home. I just kept thinking its only 50
miles, not too much traffic and all flat but we just wouldn't have the braking capability and its too dangerous.
My brother in law will tow her home for us with his big truck.
So hope to meet some of you AFTER we get a new to us TV and have it outfiitted with everything we need.
Beth
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Old 07-26-2013, 08:02 AM   #6
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Greetings from the Florida Panhandle

Welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us. We would love to see pictures of your new baby when you get her home.
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Old 07-26-2013, 10:22 AM   #7
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Brake controller might be easy to install

Check to see if your present tow vehicle has the wiring for a brake controller installed from the factory. Many of the newer ones do these days.

If the wiring is there, installing a brake controller is little more than "plug and play."

While I agree that you need the trailer brakes working, I'd hate to see you delay enjoying your new airstream because of this detail.

BTW, the second time I towed our Airstream a motorcycle wrecked out in front of a school bus that was in front of me. Very glad all the brakes worked that day.
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