Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 05-27-2006, 06:03 PM   #1
New Member
 
Currently Looking...
Anthem , Arizona
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 1
Towing Capacity

We have a SUV with the trailer pkg including oil cooler that is rated for 4500#. If we add an Equalizer Hitch, can we safely pull a 19' Safari Bambi rated at 4500 GVW?
__________________

__________________
hwpeddie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2006, 06:12 PM   #2
4 Rivet Member
 
Steve Heywood's Avatar
 
1997 30' Excella
Waddell , Arizona
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 313
Images: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by hwpeddie
We have a SUV with the trailer pkg including oil cooler that is rated for 4500#. If we add an Equalizer Hitch, can we safely pull a 19' Safari Bambi rated at 4500 GVW?
Maybe!!

Depends on the SUV and whether the manufacturer is optomistic or realistic about thier tow ratings. Since you live in AZ that means HOT weather and lots of climbing. I nearly fried my 89 Jeep Cherokee headed north on I-17 while towing a 2,000 lb utility trailer in August. On the otherhand my F250 will drag my 30' Excella up any hill in the western US regardless of temperature without a wimper.
__________________

__________________
Steve Heywood
Waddell, AZ
1999 19' Bambi (SOLD)
1997 30' Excella (SOLD)
Steve Heywood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2006, 08:06 PM   #3
Rivet Master
 
Alumaholic's Avatar

 
1966 24' Tradewind
Albuquerque , New Mexico
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 1,751
Images: 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by hwpeddie
We have a SUV with the trailer pkg including oil cooler that is rated for 4500#. If we add an Equalizer Hitch, can we safely pull a 19' Safari Bambi rated at 4500 GVW?
SUV has become a very ambiguous and ill defined term. As STeve Heywood says, it depends on the SUV, but generally a tow vehicle rated for 4500# will be too whimpy to tow a trailer rated 4500 GVW. There are some very comprehensive threads that discuss the desired ratio between tow vehicle rating and the trailer's GVW, but 4500/4500 will be frustrating especially in the mountains.
__________________
Ken L
1966 Tradewind 24
2007Chevy Silverado 2500 HD Duramax/Allison
Four Corners Unit WBCCI #8654
Alumaholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2006, 09:04 AM   #4
Rivet Master<br><img src="/ugala/forums/images/5rivet.gif">
 
CanoeStream's Avatar

 
2006 25' Safari FB SE
St. Cloud , Minnesota
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 13,279
Images: 19
Blog Entries: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by hwpeddie
We have a SUV with the trailer pkg including oil cooler that is rated for 4500#. If we add an Equalizer Hitch, can we safely pull a 19' Safari Bambi rated at 4500 GVW?
The 4500# figure for your SUV is commonly called tow capacity -- it is generally calculated with only one person on board and the most favorable hitch weight possible for that load (eg, around 10% of gross trailer weight, when 12-15% is more real world). And if you happen to run across ratings for a prospective tow vehicle (TV) GCWR, these seemingly supportive numbers still won't get you safely on the highway.

You will certainly travel with full LP tanks and occasionally with the water tank full. Weighing the hitch is ideal but I would suggest getting in the ballpark by estimating 12-15% of gross trailer weight. What you need to do with this figure is go back to your TV info and find its load capacity.

I am now addressing only the TV, without consideration of any trailer for a moment. Sources for TV load capacity are either in the manual or manufacturer's website (for recent models). The difference between the tow vehicle's empty weight and its GVWR is the load capacity. For reasons of safety, maneuverability, emergency avoidance and durability, this number becomes the most stringent measure of what is a safe load. You must keep passenger weight, luggage, pets and tongue weight within this load capacity. Now .... I will bet you dollars to donuts that at full load capacity the TV figures for tow capacity and GCWR begin to look like a pipe dream.

The other issue dogging SUVs is short wheel base; eg, even the Toyota Highlander is build on a Camry chassis! You will be able to control a long, heavy Airstream load with more wheelbase. Full-size SUVs (Suburban, Sequoia, Armada) and 1/2-ton trucks would do a good job -- except even they should be avoided if a person gets stars in their eyes and lusts after a new (heavier than the old days) 25 footer.
__________________
Bob

5 meter Langford Nahanni

CanoeStream is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2006, 10:01 AM   #5
Rivet Master<br><img src="/ugala/forums/images/5rivet.gif">
 
CanoeStream's Avatar

 
2006 25' Safari FB SE
St. Cloud , Minnesota
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 13,279
Images: 19
Blog Entries: 3
Second verse, same as the first...

I couldn't find anything at the Acura site or at Edmunds. It took some doing but I found relevant numbers on www.kbb.com for the Acura MDX. It says the curb weight is 4515# and the GVWR is 5798#, leaving a load capacity of 1283#. By the standards of my initial argument that actually does have fair capacity for passengers and hitch weight. But I do think you will get a broad consensus on the Forums saying, "Don't do it."

106" wheelbase and 6 cylinders is just too puny. I do have a friend with a Highlander and it is a respectable sized vehicle when you stand next to it. He tows a large Coleman (now Fleetwood) pop-up camper and absolutely feels at the edge of what that vehicle can do.

Please don't fall into the abyss of "a dealer says so" if you get that from an RV salesman. Making a sale might be too tempting, though knowledgeable sales people that I have met wouldn't let this get by them.
__________________
Bob

5 meter Langford Nahanni

CanoeStream is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2006, 10:08 AM   #6
Site Team
 
Janet H's Avatar

 
1964 26' Overlander
1964 19' Globetrotter
Eastern , Washington
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 12,445
Images: 90
Personal experience....

I occasionally have to tow my Argosy Minuet with a Ford exploder. The minuet is 19.6. feet long and weighs 2400 lbs dry. The ford is rated to tow 3700 lbs. It has a small engine and a manual transmission. We stiffened up the suspension and put truck tires on the ford and have a weight distributing hitch.

We tow with no stuff (extra weight) in the ford. And as little as possible in the Argosy and it ROTS! The trailer is in charge. It's really hard on the Ford and I figure this towing is going to shorten the life of the vehicle. We only do this twice a year when we have to use our truck to tow a heavy equipment trailer to the same event (Music festivals). The next vehicle will have a towing capacity of 6000 lbs!

So - just to recap.... in theory with my tow vehicle and trailer combo I have 1300 lbs of head space. In reality I am maxed out and seriously under powered. It doesn't feel good.

You are proposing and even worse scenario. Yes - you can probably move the trailer down the road but you'll probably wear your tow rig harshly, get rotten fuel mileage and substantially increase the rate of gray hair production on the heads of anyone in the vehicle.
__________________
1964 Overlander | '08 Touareg V6
Current Project: 1964 Globetrotter

.
Let's have a polishing party: I'll supply the trailer and buffing supplies. BYOB (bring your own buffer)

AirForums Custom Search
Janet H is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2006, 10:19 AM   #7
Aluminut
 
Silvertwinkie's Avatar
 
2004 25' Safari
. , Illinois
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 10,334
There is a difference between moving and towing. If you were to use an SUV with passengers, fuel and any cargo at all (even a single pencil), you will exceed the rated tow capacity of that SUV. That said, it will move it, but not tow it. Could you get by? Perhaps. In hilly and mountainous areas? Most likely not. Should you have a TV that has at least a 5500-6000 lbs capacity? Wouldn't hurt.

Looking at your profile, it looks like you may be talking about an Acura MDX. I can tell you first hand that has darn near the same engine as the Honda Accord V6. Both are FWD V6. They are not built to do heavy towing. There isn't enough cooling (trans, rad, etc) and the trans in general on the V6 Hondas has been problematic. Our 2001 and 2004 V6 Accords though better as time has gone on, has been an issue for Honda. I would NOT suggest towing a 19' Bambi with an MDX. Having towed a 19' Bambi with a Chevy V8 w/ a 5k tow rating, I can tell you, I could feel it was back there. I wouldn't even thing of towing that with our 2004 V6 Accord given what I felt with a big Chevy sedan. I would say that if you plan on towing a newer Airstream, a 16' would be as big as I'd try to tow.
__________________
Computers manufactured by companies such as IBM, Compaq and millions of others are by far the most popular with about 70 million machines in use worldwide. Macintosh fans note that cockroaches are far more numerous than humans and that numbers alone do not denote a higher life form. -NY Times 11/91
Silvertwinkie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2006, 10:54 AM   #8
Site Team
 
Janet H's Avatar

 
1964 26' Overlander
1964 19' Globetrotter
Eastern , Washington
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 12,445
Images: 90
A Couple more thoughts... if you haven't purchased yet.

Do not compromise on trailer size. It's a mistake to downsize to fit your current tow vehicle. Your trailer is going to last decades, how long will the vehicle be around? The cost of changing vehichles isn't that high - it is a hassle though.... The cost of buying a trailer and then swapping it for something larger is far higher.
__________________
1964 Overlander | '08 Touareg V6
Current Project: 1964 Globetrotter

.
Let's have a polishing party: I'll supply the trailer and buffing supplies. BYOB (bring your own buffer)

AirForums Custom Search
Janet H is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2006, 12:59 PM   #9
Rivet Master
 
RangerJay's Avatar
 
2002 19' Bambi
Northwestern Ontario , - on the backside of the map and just above the big green spot
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 818
Images: 44
We've towed a 19' Bambi behind our 03 Pathfinder for 24,000 KM (as of last weekend) - the vehicle is rated for 5,000 lbs.

When we first bought the trailer I said (and said often) that I was thrilled with the towing performance of the Pathfinder. As time and kilometres have marched on my enthusiasm has tempered. There is no problem with power (240 HP) - towing with OD off I have yet to meet a situation where I felt the vehicle was underpowered (no major mountain driving but a lot of Canadian Shield country). But, as my relationship with the vehicle and the trailer has matured - so has my understanding of the dynamics between them. The short wheel-base, high centre of gravity and modest weight of any mid-sized SUV are not positive factors when seeking a good match to a trailer that weighs as much as the vehicle does - regardless what your "rating" says.

Early on I had some concerns when being passed by large trucks driving at a high rate of speed (why does Detroit come to mind) - nothing scary but the impact was more than noticeable. After discussing this with our dealer we did some changes to improve the Pathfinders towing characteristics - changed tires from P245/70R16 to LT225/75R16 (stiffer sidewall and no "ballooning" in the tire). We also purchased a shorter, welded hitch head (reduced the overhang by almost 5 inches). The improvements in towing characteristics were immediate - there is now no noticeable impact from most passing trucks and a dramatically reduced impact on the few trucks that we can feel.

I would say today that our tow combination is "OK" - but I definitely wouldn't want to tow our trailer with anything smaller - and when the vehicle is ready to be traded - we will be getting a larger one.

Good Luck.



Jay
__________________
Bambi - 2002 (The Toaster)
Pathfinder - 2009 (The Buggy)

"I'm not young enough to know everything ....."
(Oscar Wilde)
RangerJay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2006, 01:44 PM   #10
Rivet Master
 
53flyingcloud's Avatar
 
1984 29' Sovereign
Savannah , Missouri
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 3,457
Images: 17
Blog Entries: 1
Just so you know..

Refernces: TrailerLife's 2006 TOWING GUIDE..Page 20, Acura MDX 3.5L/V6
TOW Limit 4500/3500...Now, the manufacturer breaks those rating figures down further to delineate a clearer meaning and, the limitation of his responsibilities..
4500 lbs towing a BOAT..!!
3500 lbs towing a trailer~
Having said that, you'd be wise to reconsider just how this could play out in a court of law..should you ever find yourself involved in a accident.
Now it so happens that the 19' Bambi is rated 4500 GVW but, the actual dry weight is approx 1400 lbs less..Still with this fact, it just doesn't give you alot of room for errors.
Errors in this case, can mean the differences between life and death..
ciao
53FC
__________________
WBCCI 5292 AIR 807
NEU #64
New England Unit
53flyingcloud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2006, 02:11 PM   #11
Rivet Master<br><img src="/ugala/forums/images/5rivet.gif">
 
CanoeStream's Avatar

 
2006 25' Safari FB SE
St. Cloud , Minnesota
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 13,279
Images: 19
Blog Entries: 3
Excellent points Janet, RangerJay and 53FC.

Scanning for the numbers doesn't tell the whole story. It opens my eyes each time I read the towing section in the manual for my 3/4 ton GMC Duramax. Anybody reading this should review their own TV's towing section. You should demand to read the manual fine print if considering purchase of a tow vehicle, especially of the mid-sized anything variety.

I have had a trusting relationships with RV sales staff but I went into the experience fully informed. I will never, never, never suggest that you should take an auto sales person's advice on holding down the size of a tow vehicle -- greater than 90% have no practical experience in full sized RVs.

There's no secret Airstream handshake and no insider's club -- --yeah, right! But Airstream users do live longer if they read the Forums!
__________________
Bob

5 meter Langford Nahanni

CanoeStream is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2006, 06:19 PM   #12
Site Team
 
, Minnesota
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 6,940
Images: 59
Happened Friday May 28, 2006

I would NOT like to be the RV dealer that told a family from Minnesota that they could tow a 28 ft SOB with a Chevy Tahoe (116" wb).

They lost control of the trailer, it flipped over a 4ft high divider, and killed a father and daughter in a Suburban (no trailer) going the opposite direction.

The six passengers (??) in the Tahoe were not seriously injured.

The highway patrol is doing a CRIMINAL investigation.
__________________

__________________
markdoane is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Towing capacity of 345 chopperbob General Motorhome Topics 11 09-06-2017 02:24 PM
Towing Capacity of 1995 30' Land Yacht Motorhome autoist General Motorhome Topics 4 07-23-2004 01:51 PM
Towing Experience app Tow Vehicles 9 04-19-2004 10:51 PM
Towing Regulations by State InsideOut Towing, Tow Vehicles & Hitches 2 09-16-2002 08:35 AM
Towing cars CBBOB Airstream Motorhome Forums 13 07-24-2002 09:15 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:27 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.