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Old 02-21-2012, 07:27 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by moosetags View Post
Jim, You might want to consider double checking your weight figures. A late model 28' international is probably going to tip the scales well over 6,500#. In the real world, a similar rig will go closer to 8,000# ready to camp. It is likely that a loaded 28 footer will exceed the Durango's 7,400# towing capacity on a real scale. Our 2005 Safari 25FB weighs 7,400# ready to camp with an 860# tongue weight.

Brian
Brian's rite....can't go by "published" weights...

Bob
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Old 02-21-2012, 07:28 AM   #16
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Depending on what you plan to take with you, a half ton may or may not be adequate.

I tow with a 1/2 ton Chevy without problems, though I have to pay very close attention to how I load the truck. With just my wife and I and a minimal amount of gear in the truck bed, it is very easy to exceed the gross vehicle weight of the tow vehicle. We have to be very careful.

An approximation from my experiences for example; the tongue weight of the loaded trailer (1,000 lbs), two people (300 lbs), a small generator and fuel (75 lbs), and a toolbox (50 lbs) comes close to the payload of most half ton trucks.

If there is going to be more than two of you and/or you take along many "toys", pets, or children, I suggest a 3/4 ton TV.
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Old 02-21-2012, 07:42 AM   #17
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DH,


This is the one time the old adage may not apply.....

Decide on the cart first, then choose the horse, a Clydesdale may not be necessary, and Shetland may be dangerous. Bob
Bob, a Thoroughbred would be ideal.
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Old 02-21-2012, 08:25 AM   #18
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Good points on the "real world" weight of the 28'! We may be in danger again of wandering into the great eternal tow vehicle rating debate here, but ...

.. Let the fun commence!

So I did a lot of research on tow vehicle ratings and appropriate rigs. Step one was definitely to review the stated tow ratings of vehicles, as determined by whatever car/truck manufacturing authoritative body determines these numbers (more on this in a second).

But, step two, I also started reading Andy Thomson's super-informative "Hitch Hints," and Andy was kind enough to also exchange some e-mails and take a couple of calls on the topic. Yes, I know - here's where the eye-rolling starts from some on Andy and the Canada/Europe vs. USA divide on towing with small vs. big cars.

Andy actually suggested simply modifying my 3.6L V6 MDX with a better custom hitch - apparently modern factory hitches are crappy compared to those made on American cars forty years ago. Such as, you know, the big old V8 Oldsmobile monsters that you see pulling 31' Sovereigns in the AS ads of yesteryear. Andy has compelling research showing that factors such as independent suspension and overhang are key in determining a hitch setup, and not just the published tow ratings. Some might even argue that a 3/4 pickup truck is a WORSE tower than a decently configured SUV (even a V6!) because the pickup truck lacks fully independent rear suspension, critical to good towing.

And as it turns out, many suspect the "official" ratings are tarnished by good ole' capitalism; manufacturers apparently undersell the towing capability of SUVs and even wagons and sedans so as to steer you to buying a truck. Which are (I'm shocked! Shocked!) much larger profit makers for the manufacturers than SUVs, minivans, and wagons. Notice that in marketing and ads, the manufacturers put up images of the big tough guy truck hauling gear or loads of gravel; the SUV or minivan is full of happy kids in soccer uniforms and groceries.

Long story short, while the published 2011 Durango might appear slightly under spec'd, the unibody construction and fully independent suspension make it plenty big enough (the V6 might even be enough, but I liked that extra margin plus a fast family SUV the rest of the time) to tow even a fully loaded 8,000 lb trailer. One caveat - I'm on the east coast and won't be spending much time climbing mountain passes at 80 mph like you do out west.

Let the debate begin!

- Jim
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Old 02-21-2012, 09:00 AM   #19
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Dave, you didn't tell us enough about "how" you plan to camp. Your discussion basically said you wanted a 4 wheel unit but not a diesel.

I have a newer Tundra with the 5.7 and it has plenty of power to pull my 25FB. You need to address some other issues. SUV or PU? Do you plan to carry gasoline and a generator? Would you want to put the gas inside your SUV? What other stuff are you planning on taking? Do you pack light or heavy?

I really like my PU but it is only a half ton and all half tons will limit you to carrying capacities. Do not be fooled when they say it can tow this or tow that. While this is important, what good is a towing capacity if you can't take anyone with you?

If I were looking today, I might take a peek at the Ford Eco Boost for the gas saving part of things. I would want to wait a bit until this new engine gets some experience under its belt though.
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Old 02-21-2012, 09:16 AM   #20
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POI.....

No one ever mention's the cost of the necessary up-grades done to the small et all. TV's. Blank minds want to know?


Bob
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Old 02-21-2012, 09:48 AM   #21
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Yes, a properly equipped 1/2 ton isn't cheap....(especially at the higher trim levels). And there's another cost that's not so obvious: the decrement to the available payload....check the sticker on the driver's door to be sure, because it may be a couple of hundred pounds less than advertised.
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:25 AM   #22
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Jim

Sounds like the 2011 Durango will be fine for you although it may need a little bit of tweaking. Every TV is going to be a bit of a compromise; there is no free lunch. I have an 08 Tundra and it is everything that I want in a TV, but it is only a half ton, so it is load limited. I may be at or over the gross weight of the vehicle or the rear axle on occasion, but as long as I am towing on smooth roads and driving gently, I think that I will be fine.

Dave

Lots of good information in this thread. Just filter through it and make your own best decision on what is the correct TV for you.

Dan
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:35 AM   #23
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Quote:
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POI.....

No one ever mention's the cost of the necessary up-grades done to the small et all. TV's. Blank minds want to know?


Bob
We bought our Airstream from Can-Am RV where the cost of the hitch, its modification, weight distribution and sway control systems, brake controller, mirrors and installation of everything was included in the cost of the trailer. Others in the Forum have trekked to Ontario to have work done on their vehicles without buying a trailer so they would be able to give you a fair idea. I suspect the answer will be "it depends"!
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:54 AM   #24
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Aftermath

I too would look at the Ford ecoboost. However, I don't know if an extra 2-4 mpg would be worth the additional cost of the EB and the repair cost that may be needed for the motor or the turbocharger before I hit 300,000 miles. I have confidence that my 5.7L Tundra will make it to 300k just fine.

Dave

You can buy a well equiped 2wd Tundra for about 30k. I paid 25k for mine (5k rebate) in 08. No difference between the 2012 and the 2008 models. So I would also look at any well cared for used 5.7L Tundras or Sequoias. If you go for the Tundra get the floor shift.

Dan
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Old 02-21-2012, 11:03 AM   #25
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No one ever mention's the cost of the necessary up-grades done to the small et all. TV's. Blank minds want to know?
The hitch reinforcement is approximately $500, IIRC. (At least it was about that for my minivan.) You need to buy mirrors, anti-sway, and the various other hitch parts anyway, regardless of the vehicle. Andy advocates some tire changes sometimes to help improve gearing, but that brings other handling benefits. (I didn't change tires on my van, but it dramatically aids stability of some trucks.)

The real benefit of the Ecoboost is the torque curve and the power. It's a lot more easy-towing than the Ford 5.0-liter V8. That Tundra/Sequoia 5.7-liter V8 is a brute though....

Tom
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Old 02-21-2012, 11:06 AM   #26
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Quote:
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We bought our Airstream from Can-Am RV where the cost of the hitch, its modification, weight distribution and sway control systems, brake controller, mirrors and installation of everything was included in the cost of the trailer. Others in the Forum have trekked to Ontario to have work done on their vehicles without buying a trailer so they would be able to give you a fair idea. I suspect the answer will be "it depends"!

Free is Alwaze good.....

Bob
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Old 02-21-2012, 11:18 AM   #27
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Free is Alwaze good.....

Bob
Well, it's not free, but bundled up in the overall cost it doesn't seem so bad
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Old 03-10-2012, 11:43 AM   #28
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Ford F150 4x4 with ecoboost option ! Great pulling power and good mileage so far. Love this truck.
Gotta agree with Airnutt on the Ford F150 4x4 Ecoboost since I have one. I get great gas mileage but Im only towing around 2 1/2 tons when fully loaded with stuff, people and dogs. The new Ford trucks have great new technology for towing and the Ecoboost can tow up to 11,300 lbs with the right package. Someone else mentioned long wheel base and that is a plus factor as well. My truck is about 20 foot long and has the off road package as well so you can unhitch and explore. If I was getting close to pulling 5 tons, I'd definitely start looking at 250s and 350s. Something about towing close to your TV's capacity is not as enjoyable.
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