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Old 01-08-2017, 05:24 PM   #1
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Aubrey , Texas
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2015 gmc 1500

I have been looking for info from guys that have a GMC 1500 (looks like most tow with Ford or Dodge)
I can not trade or upgrade at this time but I also don't want to buy an airstream and in two years wish I had bought the AS I wanted.

Now I have a 1500 4 wheel drive 1/2 ton that the specs show that I can tow a me trailer weight of 9200 pounds (truck has 3.42 axle and has the trailer towing package) I really would like to get the classic 30 as we plan to retire with.in the next two years
I alway try to empty the black and grey tanks before traveling and only have about 1/4-1/2 tank of fresh
In the specs the classics shows GVWR 7,365 GVWR 10,000
If loaded to GVWR I will be over weight but with just two of us on our two pups (50 lbs each)

I know a 3/4 would be best but am I making a mistake now with the classic or should I wait two more years before getting an airstream
Thank you for any opinions given
Stuart
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Old 01-08-2017, 05:35 PM   #2
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You can make it do for the 2 years, if you are careful. Buying the wrong AS is a bigger mistake from a .long term standpoint. My 07 Classic 30. Weighs in at 8500 pounds and I don't have it on a diet. Just watch your truck rear axle load and gcwr. You will have to keep the truck bed on a diet and watch the trailer loading. Drive conservatively, and get the truck you really need after you determine your lifestyle loads.
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Old 01-08-2017, 05:48 PM   #3
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I am in the same situation with my Suburban 1500 2000 model. At a maximum towing capability of 9000 lbs, I believe the 25 or 26 models should be fine? I'm excited that the Airstreams are as light as they are!
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Old 01-08-2017, 06:30 PM   #4
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It isn't just the weight that matters with Airstream, it is also the low profile streamlined shape and independent suspension that makes them tow so nicely.

If you want the Classic, but don't need it for two years, take your time. They are making improvements on these each year, recently went from a forced air to liquid convection heating system. There's a completely new Classic 33 floor plan on the Airstream website now.

As for tow vehicles, it's not just ratings either. Vehicle suspension, power train, hitch setup and weight distribution, loading of the combination, and driver expectations make the difference between a great tow vehicle and owner dissatisfaction. What makes me happy is either overkill or inadequate to someone else. Do your own research, if you can put a hitch on what you have there is not a better starting point.
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Old 01-11-2017, 02:23 PM   #5
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I'm assuming you don't have the max trailer tow package (NHT option) which adds 400 lbs. to payload and gives a tow rating of, IIRC, 11,000 lbs. I have a GMC 1500 crew with the max trailer tow and the 6.2 engine, pulling an FC 27. Last summer, we completed about 30k miles of traveling, literally all over the country with this combination, which worked very well for my wife, me and our 100 lb. dog. You will probably have a rated payload of about 1500 lbs., which is your limiting factor. I don't think the 30s have any more tongue weight than the 27s--in fact it may be less. With a good w/d hitch and plans not to spend lots of time in the western mountains, you should be ok if you watch your weight in both the trailer and the truck. However, if you plan on full timing and going out west, you'll probably want more truck. Not necessarily a 3/4 ton, but at least a half ton with around 2,000 lbs. cargo and more power than the Chevy 5.3 engine--also the extra cooling for the engine and transmission. Both Chevy/GMC and Ford make trucks that will do this, especially if your dogs will be happy with the smaller "double cab" that will give you payload of more than 2,000 lbs. The Ford 3.5 liter Ecoboost and GM 6.2 liter engines are good towing engines, with the 6.2 probably giving you better engine braking. Unfortunately, the 6.2 engine and the max trailer tow package are available in only one trim level -- SLT for the GMC and LTZ for the Chevy, which are fairly loaded and therefore expensive. I think the Ford 3.5 Ecoboost is available in XLT trim level as well as higher, so the Ford truck that meets your needs might be cheaper. The GMC also comes with the 8-speed transmission, which in my nearly 50,000 miles of experience has been reliable and very effective in matching the engine to the load, much better than the 6-speed in the 2015 trucks equipped with the 5.3 engine. Now let's wait for the big diesel fanboys to show up and insist that nothing less than a 3/4 ton with a 6.6 liter diesel will do!
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Old 01-12-2017, 11:03 AM   #6
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thanks fo rthe info will look forward to more comments. We looked at the pictures of the 33' classic but we want the back windows for the bedroom area (looking at the twins to give a little more space and a place for our two dogs to sleep) right now we are taking m multiply trips a year from weekend to 2 weeks Our daughter lives in COlorado Springs and we really love camping at Cheyenne Mountain and Mueller State park We have a 33' class a gas motor home and we take it very easy in the mountains. My wife does not feel comfortable in the class a as she thinks we are going to fall off the road (haven't fell off the roda yet but she is very nervous) This year she told me that she would consider an airstream ( I have been wanting one for a verylong time but happy wife ....) so I really want to get one this year so we can take the trips that we enjoy and see how everything works out. I am not know in my family as a spped demon so keeping it under 65 mph is no problem
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Old 01-12-2017, 11:07 AM   #7
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With your situation, you will be just fine. Enjoy!
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Old 01-12-2017, 01:10 PM   #8
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Your truck is not the ideal for towing a heavy 30 Classic. It will do it but it will work hard on a grade and take a lot of fuel. Biggest thing is as what Doug spoke of ie using a WDH and working with it at a scale to make sure you are not over axle in the rear and that you within reason get the best weight distribution you can.
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Old 01-13-2017, 09:12 AM   #9
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I didn't get finish that post.
Because without good weight distribution it will likely not be a safe enjoyable tow.
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