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Old 04-13-2009, 10:37 PM   #43
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Tundras are domestic, built in Princeton Indiana and San Antonio Texas!
(most of my Harley parts are foreign)
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When I bought my 08 Tundra from a FORD/TOYOTA dealership, they talked about a previous technology exchange between Ford and Toyota (much like the one between Mercury outboards and Yamaha), that involved Ford pickup technology being exchanged for something else. Look closely (including underneath); I think it really happened. I've had a lot of Fords, including diesels, and I think those that choose to bash the Toyota maybe haven't asked the 2nd generation Tundra to go do some real work. It was an eye opening experience for me.
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Old 04-13-2009, 10:51 PM   #44
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Old 04-14-2009, 12:53 AM   #45
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Hi, not all half tons are the same and not all 25'ers are the same. My Lincoln gets its torque at a very low 2,750 RPM. [rare for a gas engine] And my 2005 Safari 25-B has a GVWR of 6,300 lbs. [1,000 lbs less than most newer models] With my Lincoln rated to tow 8,900 lbs, I have well over a 20% safety margin. But at the time we purchased our trailer, a 25' Classic had a GVWR of 7,300 lbs and I personally determined that that was more than I wanted to tow with my half ton Lincoln, even though still well within the specs. Too many combinations to generalize that half tons aren't good to tow a 25'er. But in my opinion the breaking point does seem to appear in the 25' range. [lower rated half ton with a higher GVWR 25' trailer is the deal breaker]
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Old 04-14-2009, 08:26 AM   #46
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Silvertwinkie, you are correct in taking into account the effect of the WD hitch on Brian's TV + trailer combination. When I was calculating the effect of a WD hitch on my Tundra's payload, I took that into account too and decided I was within safety margins.

The 80% rule sounds good, but I have not seen any indication that anyone has actually figured out that it is true. It may be an assumption rather than a scientific explanation that has become a rule that everyone accepts as true because it has been said over and over. I'm not saying we shouldn't take it into account, and I have said it myself, but what proof is there that it is absolutely correct?

Bill, I know I'm not going to change your mind very easily. We've been over this again and again. What Toyota did you lease—Tacoma or Tundra? Which year—they both have changed a lot over the years. Most of us who have driven Toyota trucks have very positive experiences, but with any product (GM, Ford, Dodge, Toyota, etc.) there are a few bad ones. Having had a 2002 and a 2007 Tundra I can tell you from my experience there is no comparison between the trucks. Crawl underneath a 2nd gen. Tundra and look it the suspension. It looks more like a 3/4 ton than a 1/2 ton. The 1st gen. Tundra looks puny compared to the 2007. I didn't want to tow a Safari with my 2002, I sold it, bought the 2007.

And, it is very hard to say any truck is American or foreign. Parts come from all over the world. The local Toyota dealer tells me the problems they have with American built Toyotas mostly come from parts made in the US—that is depressing news. I had one switch replaced on the Tundra—it was American made.

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Old 04-14-2009, 08:47 AM   #47
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Hey Bob. The 7300lb rating vs the 6300lb rating doesn't mean that the trailer will actually weight 7300lbs, it just means that after mid 2005 Airstream upgraded the axle capacities to accept more NCC because what they found out, as most of us here knew, that the 6300lb max weight was an easy target to hit and in most cases exceed...heck a case of bee...I mean soda can weigh in a 18lbs alone (diet or light could reduce 1lb ). IIRC, the NCC for our units that have the 6000lb axles, which were a 6300GVWR was about 400 or 500lbs until they upped the axles. Then NCC went up by 1000lbs. Will you fill it? Hard to say, but as Brian shows, it isn't hard to exceed the orig 6300 on a 25er with ample the storage and accessories these offer.

As for the American issue that's been brought up, folks here are right on, there are no fully domestic or foreign autos anymore in this global economy, however, the profits for said vehicles do go to the respected companies in their country of origin. It's like Microsoft, they own nearly 8-9 out of every computer on the planet with their software. Love 'em or hate 'em, they're an American company and the profits stay here in the US. That is not to say that your Toyota purchase is not supporting Americans, it is, but as Gene pointed out, it is a sad state of reality that things produced domesticically, regardless of brand tend to have lower overall QC. Look at our RV industry....it's plagued with QC issues...even Airstream is not immune. Honda, Toyota, BMW, Mercedes....similar issues. I can tell you that of the Hondas we've owned, the ones made in Japan that were imported had nearly zero problems. Both Honda produced in Ohio were very problematic compared to the first Honda we had that was imported from Japan.

My whole contention however is not with any of this, it's with the product. Being a GM fan, in the linked tests, it didn't to so hot either. The Toyota's results were disappointing. Some folks may say the tests were rigged, but deep down I know it's only a 1/2 truck. I by no means mean to beat the chest for the big 2.5, but they do have some distinct differences between their 1/2 and 3/4. I don't see that in the "foreign" offerings....yet. When they do however, my whole problem with them will evaporate. That is not to say they are bad trucks, they aren't, I just don't personally feel they are enough to deal with a 25er or larger. I also don't believe a Dodge Intrepid should be towing a 34' Airstream with or without it's rear wheels on.
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Old 04-14-2009, 08:59 AM   #48
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Where the OP is now.

I had my walk through on the AS yesterday, and went looking for comparisons on a new tow vehicle. My Tundra has a capacity of 6600 pounds, and the build sheet says the AS is 5060 dry, but it didn't include upgrades like the awnings all around, the audio visual package a 23" flat screen tv, and all liquids, food, and cargo. The water and holding tanks on the 25B are located in front of the axle too. I was/am most concerned about rear axle ratings on the Tundra, and the AS has a relatively heavy 860 pound hitch weight. The Tundra's owners's manual warns of not exceeding more than 10% of the GVWR(660 pounds) tongue weight.

I've camped in different rigs for over thirty years, motorhomes, 5th wheels, TT's, and even a 13' Scamp, and I know from those experiences that while we try to travel as light as we can, we have at least 1200 pounds of gear, food, us, and the dogs(three of em) with us on any lengthy trip.

I believe the previous poster's weight from actually weighing his AS. The manufacturer's weight estimates can even vary from AS to AS model.

My two TV's of choice this week are the 2003 GMC 3/4 ton 4WD, 77k miles and now I'm looking at a 2005 Chevy 1 ton dually duramax 2WD with 39,000 miles. The 2005 is in much better shape from what I can tell, and is priced 5K more than the 2003. It also looks cool, like a real workhorse TV, with running light and nerf bars:-)

I had just about made my mind up to purchase the 2005 when I read the post about a one ton causing problems with the AS. I realize the one ton is probably overkill, but I want to make this my last tow vehicle purchase.

Beautiful wife is being patient now, but I've been married mostly happily for 40 years, and I know she won't be happy long if we go through this again in a few months or maybe even decades. So I'm trying not have to second guess this purchase. I'm preferring the diesel choice now, just because when I tow I don't want to have to worry about whether I'll make it up the next hill.

The attraction to the one ton now(seriously) is the low miles, almost half those of the 2003. I've also been reading the Duramax diesel forums where many are experiencing problems with injectors on their 2001-2004 Duramax diesels. The late 2004 and on models apparently have been redesigned amd therefore "fixed". The one ton is also quite a bit quieter when idling and when under load.

When all is said and done I also realize that 39K for the AS, and 23K for a new TV can buy a lot of tropical exotic vacations, but that's not me. I'd rather be with a great group of AS'ers at a rally, or camped by a babbling brook all by ourselves. RV ownership gives one a lot of freedom, while also causing lots of grief and expense at times too. At least it's not a boat, but don't get me started on that one!

Thanks so much for all the input. I have much food for thought.
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Old 04-14-2009, 09:03 AM   #49
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Tundra's are domestic, thanks for the clarification.

If you want to drive foreign that's your choice. If it works for you great. As long as it's safe why should I care?

I choose not, and that works for ME. I feel no compulsation to explain why or try to change others opinions.

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Old 04-14-2009, 10:07 AM   #50
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Steve, you are looking at this in the right way—checking out everything, weighing all the information, and trying to make decisions in an imperfect world. We all go through the same things and hope for the best decision. I'm sure you will make the best decision for you and your beautiful wife.

Meanwhile some of us will continue to argue the same things for all time, but Bill has made the right decision for him and his beautiful wife and so have I, and so has everyone else (mostly). For the most part we don't take it personally, though we do get a little excited, and why not? Fortunately we don't debate who's wife is more beautiful (I do know the answer to that one). All will agree all Airsteams are beautiful.

Enjoy your new Airstream and take your time deciding on the right TV for you.

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Old 04-14-2009, 10:31 AM   #51
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Just to inject a bit of levity to this thread:
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Old 04-14-2009, 11:49 AM   #52
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I have drawn this analogy before, but the tow vehicle discussion is like campfire rifle banter. Some guys will argue that you can't shoot a whitetail deer with anything less than a .300 Win Mag. Others (like me) hunt deer with a much smaller rifle.

Gene's comment is spot on, Steve. You are wise to take the time to read the actual manufacturer's data from Airstream and truck manufacturers. Educate yourself on concepts like GWR, GVWR, GCWR, etc. For reasons of safety and liability, I think it is good advice to stay within all of the legal ratings for vehicle, coach and "combo." Within the legal limits, towing is a matter of preference and driving style rather than science. What works for you may not work for the next guy. Gene has towed his late model Safari successfully with his Tundra... the next guy might have "white knuckles."

While tow vehicle selection generates heat (and smoke), things like proper selection and installation of a WD hitch are important. I recommend having a professional set up the hitch. While there is a fixation on vehicle frames, I have yet to see evidence of an Airstream-related accident caused by vehicle frame failure. I have seen reports of crumpled aluminum (and people) due to brake failures. Things like properly maintained brakes (on both TV and trailer) and a quality controller (I use Prodigy) are critical.

As our local volunteer fire department likes to say, the most important part of your car is the nut behind the wheel. The best tow rig in the world is not an adequate substitute for a driver's judgment. Have fun with your Airstream and be safe out there.
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Old 04-14-2009, 12:35 PM   #53
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Steve, you are looking at this in the right wayóchecking out everything, weighing all the information, and trying to make decisions in an imperfect world. We all go through the same things and hope for the best decision. I'm sure you will make the best decision for you and your beautiful wife.

Meanwhile some of us will continue to argue the same things for all time, but Bill has made the right decision for him and his beautiful wife and so have I, and so has everyone else (mostly). For the most part we don't take it personally, though we do get a little excited, and why not? Fortunately we don't debate who's wife is more beautiful (I do know the answer to that one). All will agree all Airsteams are beautiful.

Enjoy your new Airstream and take your time deciding on the right TV for you.

Gene
Amen...
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Old 04-19-2009, 08:13 PM   #54
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I saw a newer Toyota Tundra ( 08 ) pulling a landscape trailer, with 2 skids of sod on it. I had a skid of sod in my bed, and 3 on a trailer a few weeks ago. I will say that guy driving his Toyota wasnt feeling very comfortable, he was tying up the middle lane of 271 Northbound. maybe 50 mph. But he had a heck of a nice veiw of the clouds. He was lookin up right at'em.

I guess some of us expect a little more for our money. (some of us)

I can say when my SuperDuty is loaded up, I get a grin on my face, it is always a pleasure to tow with.

But you gotta go with what excites you, cuz at the end of the day its in your garage.
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Old 04-19-2009, 08:57 PM   #55
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We tow with different vehicles in Canada because we always have tail winds and there are no hills here.
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Old 04-19-2009, 09:08 PM   #56
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Towed my 72 23' all over with my 2005 Tundra. no issues, Bought new 5.7 Tundra in 2007 for tow mirrrors and the built in navigation and its great. The tow vehicle before 2005 was an F 250 and I greatly prefer the Tundra. Going from San Diego east gives me grades and no problems. Look at the old caravan photos and see all the cars towing
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