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Old 02-28-2015, 02:35 PM   #1
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Such a novice here...

Kids are grown and soon my wife and I will hit the road in a new (or used) AS. With the help of all you lovely AS owning folks on this Forum, we will make the correct purchasing decisions! Thanks in advance for any and all input. I JUST bought a 2015 Nissan Frontier Pro 4x so thats my tow vehicle (love the truck, don't want to hear about trading up to a Ford half ton or one ton or diesel). I am a TOTAL novice with trailers other than my lightweight boat so first off, the new hitch label says 7,500 lbs max tow weight and 750lbs max tongue weight. Does this restrict my purchase to a particular size AS? Can anyone tell me why the single axle AS trailers are SO MUCH lighter than the next one up? i.e.: sport vs flying cloud. Big price difference too. Already got some GREAT advice by reading other newbie threads and we WILL visit the dealer and spend some time inside the various models to purchase the best size. Retirement is 2 years away but we plan to purchase sooner and do some weekend trips and have it on our property as extra space/guest room so the intelligent buying process starts now. Thanks.
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Old 02-28-2015, 03:49 PM   #2
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Welcome aboard! So, the journey begins...

Tell us about your camping trailer experiences? SOB? (some other brand)... or tent only? or... never camped?

Thanks for sharing with us! Hope we can help!
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Old 02-28-2015, 03:53 PM   #3
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Greeting from the Florida Panhandle

Welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us.

Your tow vehicle selection will limit your Airstream possibilities to a certain extent. A small tow vehicle like that may limit you to the smaller single axle Airstreams.

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Old 02-28-2015, 04:26 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forums and into and AS in the near future.

Your vehicle has a door sticker on the drivers side that will give you a very clear picture as to how much Gross Vehicle Weight you can tow. This is determined by a multitude of factors based on what the vehicle manufacturer put into your particular vehicle. Not all F150 pick up trucks can tow the same amount. A critical factor in my mind has always been tires on both the tow vehicle as well as the trailer. My suggestion would be to check to see what "LOAD" rating on are your tow vehicle. One the basic is E rated, my guess is you will have D, which will work and if so is one of the reasons for the GVW number on your door sticker.

Once you determine how much actual weight your tow vehicle can tow, you can then back into the size AS trailer you can tow. I always opt for more tow vehicle than is required to tow whatever it is I am towing. My guess is you will be in the 20-23 foot range, probably not up to a 25' as the hitch weight and overall weight of the trailer will probably be too much for your tow vehicle.

Again welcome and best of luck. Take what you read on the forums, then do what many do and have done call the manufacturers. They will always be on the safe side of any answer and you can then judge from there.

Enjoy
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Old 02-28-2015, 04:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by astroboy18 View Post
.....the new hitch label says 7,500 lbs max tow weight and 750lbs max tongue weight. Does this restrict my purchase to a particular size AS?

The spec sheets tell me that the max trailer (towing) weight of a Nissan Frontier is 6300 lbs. You should find in your vehicles paperwork a number more specific for your vehicle. To determine your max tongue weight, weigh your vehicle at a truck weigh scale with the vehicle loaded with the people, gas, and gear you plan to take along with you on your travels. Subtract your weight indicated on the rear axle from the maximum allowable axle found on the drivers side C pillar and that is the max tongue weight for your vehicle. Remember that you will probably be in the range requiring a weight distribution hitch, so allow at least 100 lbs for the hitch.

Bear in mind that the sales people you may talk to will not be there to support any outrageous claims in court should the unexpected occur, so take any salespeak assurances with a grain of salt.
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Old 02-28-2015, 04:46 PM   #6
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Is your new truck equipped with a tow package?
You will find the older A$'s are lighter and have less tongue weight than the new units.
I have a '74 Argosy 26' with a dry weight of 3,900#'s and the GVW is 6,200#'s. tongue weight is 700#'s.
You should check to see what the receiver hitch itself is rated for. It should be a Class III or higher.


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Old 02-28-2015, 06:58 PM   #7
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Welcome aboard! So, the journey begins...

Tell us about your camping trailer experiences? SOB? (some other brand)... or tent only? or... never camped?

Thanks for sharing with us! Hope we can help!
Zero Camping trailer experiences but years and years of tent camping. Getting to old for that tent camping scene, LOL. We already "live in the woods" on some acreage (small house, not a tiny house) with huge oaks and pines all around us.
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Old 02-28-2015, 07:18 PM   #8
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Zero Camping trailer experiences but years and years of tent camping. Getting to old for that tent camping scene, LOL. We already "live in the woods" on some acreage (small house, not a tiny house) with huge oaks and pines all around us.
Are the "woods" in Seminole County or elsewhere? Will the Airstream be part of your living arrangement?

Brian
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Old 03-01-2015, 06:55 AM   #9
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Are the "woods" in Seminole County or elsewhere? Will the Airstream be part of your living arrangement?

Brian
My woods are in Seminole county, backs up to the incredible WEKIVA nature preserve! Part of our living arrangements no, maybe for visiting guests or as an "extra room" on the property.
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Old 03-01-2015, 08:28 AM   #10
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My woods are in Seminole county, backs up to the incredible WEKIVA nature preserve! Part of our living arrangements no, maybe for visiting guests or as an "extra room" on the property.
That's a beautiful area. We have camped at Wekiwa Springs State on several occasions as recently as last December.

Brian
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Old 03-01-2015, 08:42 AM   #11
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Welcome to the forum. You got some good advice above. Since you chose your tow vehicle before your trailer, you have limited yourself as to what you can tow. Remember that sales people will quote empty weight, while you should be looking at gross weight. Tongue weight is usually 10-15% of coach weight, so use 12% of gross weight as a rough number. That, plus the hitch, is what the truck will be expected to carry from the Airstream load. The weight of people, fuel, tools, etc. will also be part of the truck's load.
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Old 03-01-2015, 10:03 AM   #12
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Wish you the best in making your decision. I have a 2013 Honda Ridgeline with 5,000 lb tow. I have a 16 ft sport airstream approximately 3000 lbs dry weight. That number came from the shipping weight. I felt like by the time I added cargo, fuel, people, etc. I wanted to be careful not to overload the truck so my decision was to stay with the 16 ft. This was the decision that works for my wife and I. I'm sure taking all things in consideration you'll make the right decision for you.
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Old 03-01-2015, 10:28 AM   #13
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So.. roughly.. yes, you 'can' tow on level ground and bumpy ground... a 7000# load with a TV which has 7000# load rating... but... if you then tow same load with a TV with a 9000# rating, you will be impressed at the improvement.
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Old 03-01-2015, 01:26 PM   #14
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"Can" and "should" are not the same thing. Think about the film of Wally Byam towing an Airstream with a bicycle. Yes, he did it - on level ground and for a short distance. I suspect that any hill would have been the end of the demonstration.

I'd rather have more truck than I need than not enough.
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