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Old 01-17-2006, 02:09 PM   #1
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Question 76 Caravanner with 1995 Isuzu 3.2 Liter

My husband and I just purchased a 1976 Caravanner. We are preparing to pull it with a 1995 Isuzu Trooper 3.2 V6 with a square receiver and a 2" ball.
We have never pulled anything before, what do we need to know. Do we need a transmission cooler...someone suggested this, why? The trailer weighs 4250 ?? and the owners manual says the Trooper is rated for 5000 lbs. The trailer comes with a Reese equalizer hitch. Do we need anything else? THANKS! Dianne
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Old 01-17-2006, 02:16 PM   #2
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Hi Dianne,

Most folks recommend not going over 80% of your vehicle's recommended towing capacity. You might want to watch how much stuff you load into it.

On the tranny cooler, the #1 cause of killing automatic transmissions is overheating them. Pulling your trailer will put a lot more load on your tranny than just your truck alone. That causes the fluid in it to get hotter more quickly.

If you don't want to put a transmission cooler on it, you might put a transmission temperature gauge on there so you can keep an eye on it. If it starts getting too hot, pull off the road and let it cool down. Personally, I think it's a good idea to have a gauge even if you do have a cooler.

Best of luck with your new camper!

Jim
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Old 01-17-2006, 02:25 PM   #3
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Dianne,
Congradulations on the new trailer. I think you are going to find out that your TV may be undersized for this size trailer. The trailer weight you stated is the dry weight. It does not include anything you might add for your trip. My 75 tradewind is the same size and weight as your Caravanner. I estimate my towing weight to be 5000 pounds. If I fill the water tank (45 gallons) thats 360 pounds right there. Then add pots and pans, food and fly rods, it adds up in a hurry. You must also consider the hitsh weight when you look at your TV. You most likely have a 500 pound limit with your TV, your trailer is that and more. You also have a short wheel base on your TV. I tow my trailer with a 2003 Toyota Tundra V8, 4.7 liter engine. My tow limit is 7200 pounds. I would not want less. Sometimes I want more. Many forum members use the 80% rule for safety. That is, take your max tow weight and multiply it times 80% and use that number as your max. In your case 5000 x 80% = 4000.
As far as the cooler, I turn off overdrive when I tow. This helps the transmission from overheating. It also makes the gas mileage bad!
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Old 01-17-2006, 03:52 PM   #4
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I tow my 1977 Caravanner with a 99 Chevy 2500 with a 350 motor,It tows real well ,The Izuzu would be a little to light duty for me,I would not feel very comfortable with anything smaller than full sized TV ,
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Old 01-17-2006, 04:10 PM   #5
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Thumbs down Tow troubles ahead

A Caravanner behind an Isuzu is not a pretty site.
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Old 01-17-2006, 04:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blucloud
My husband and I just purchased a 1976 Caravanner. We are preparing to pull it with a 1995 Isuzu Trooper 3.2 V6 with a square receiver and a 2" ball.
Congrats on the new trailer .... If my memory serves me correct it should be a 2 5/16" ball for towing.
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Old 01-17-2006, 05:55 PM   #7
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Congratulations on your new coach.
About your Isuzu, you can probably tow with it, but I don't think you will be very pleased with the result. It is right on the ragged edge of what it is capable of, and you will not get a smooth, relaxing trip (which is what we want when going camping, relaxation). Think "white knuckles".
I also agree your trailer ball size should be 2 5/16", 10,000 lb rating.
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Old 01-17-2006, 06:13 PM   #8
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Its always a good rule if it is your first time towing to have someone that has towed a TT to "Show ya the way " kinda hands on ,,,,, There is a lot to remember on the first tow,and after a few tows it becomes so easy,,, its like it is FUN !!!
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Old 01-18-2006, 12:08 AM   #9
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I'm right with you regarding the excitement of your new AS--congratulations! I saw the picture of the early AS being towed by a bicycle and I was on for the hunt. I had wanted an AS but wasn't really willing to give up my Toyota Land Cruiser. I was getting kind of tired of really camping and I figured if a bike could tow an AS surely I could tow one with my 17 year old Toyota Land Cruiser. Sooo... I bought a 2001 19' Bambi and viola!!! My Cruiser is pretty modified and I'm about a thousand pounds lighter than you are, However, I only travel locally in Southern Calfornia. Also, I'm pretty sure I'm not making any friends on the way home coming up Hwy 330 to Running Springs, where I live.

Happy Trails!!!
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Old 03-07-2006, 09:23 PM   #10
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Conrats on your new AS , I have the same year and model .Look on the front and you should find a tag that gives the GVWR which is 5800# . I have weighed mine at the local Sand & Gravel and it comes pretty close to that loaded to travel with full water tank. The 4250# you stated is the factory dry weight without options , very deceptive . Your tow vehicle will probably handle some local camping but not much more , at least safely. If there is a chance that you can borrow a buddies vehicle , like a 3/4 ton , and compare the two towing , it will be very apparent what the difference is.In any case definately use the WD hitch.Good luck and have fun.
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