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Old 02-21-2011, 10:40 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by moosetags View Post
I need the 8 foot bed as I plan to tow Lucy with this unit.
I don't really understand why you think that you'd need an 8 foot bed to tow the 25 AS.

I have a extended cab 6 foot bed towing a 28 and she does just fine. Maybe it's the Hensley, I dunno. But I also towed an older 25 with a Toyota 4Runner that did okay too.

Consider that the long bed regular cab is probably somewhere near the same length as a extended cab short bed. If it's just wheelbase that you're looking for to make you comfortable with specs on paper, either could get you there.

That being said, crew cab is quite nice convenience wise. No having to open the front doors to get to the back doors and stuff or people in/out. But if you aren't going to use them all that much it may not be an issue for you. We use ours almost all the time as the mutts ride in the back and we're full timing. Yeah, we have to open our doors first but then again it's not that big of a deal. Nice to have 4 real doors but not a must have in my book. I can live with it. You might hate it. YMMV.

How are you going to use the truck? Daily driver plus occasional camping trips? Full timing? Might make a difference. What make are you going to get? Price range and what model year? Older trucks didn't have the extra cab doors, some started earlier than others, and newer Dodge trucks have 4 full doors but a small rear seat in nearly the same length as say a similar year and wheelbase Chevy.

Also consider what kind of setup you want for the bed. Canopy? Topper? Nothing? Most of those (except for the super popular "nothing" option) cost a bit more for longer beds. Is budget a concern?

What are you going to haul in the back? My truck is quite full, and the ladder in the back is at an angle because it doesn't like being cooped up in only 6 feet of length and I didn't get one of those telescoping fancy ladders. 8 foot bed would have been nice.

Where you going to drive? Visiting Key West mostly? Then get the shorty. Wide open road and nowhere near metro areas ever? Get the long bed quad cab, and may as well throw some duals into the mix too.
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:22 PM   #16
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I absolutely have to have an 8 foot bed pick-up in order to tow Lucy as I am planning on putting an 8 foot truck camper in the bed of the truck. People do put 8 foot campers in 6 1/2 foot bed trucks, but you can't tow a heavy trailer this way as you would need to use a 2 foot hitch extension for the ball to reach the trailer. The 8 foot truck camper that I am looking at will weigh 2500# + ready to camp. A short bed truck just can not handle this job.

This new truck will be used for camping and towing. We probably will not take the truck camper out of the bed very often.

We don't visit Key West very often. Where we live in the Florida Panhandle, we are closer to Cincinnati, Ohio than we are to Key West.

Brian
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:29 PM   #17
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Brian, I'm rethinking my earlier recommendation for the dually as you do alot of moose viewing in remote areas. My parents had a crew cab dually with a pop up camper and a 31' trailer and my dad swore by the stability of the dual rear wheels. Based on your past trips that you have documented so well on these forums, you probably would be better off with a crew cab SRW 4x4.
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:35 PM   #18
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I'm leaning crew cab SRW. Many of the places that we go Moosing in the back country have put some scrapes on the Suburban. A dually would have a real problem on some of the roads that we have been on.

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Old 02-21-2011, 11:41 PM   #19
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You may want to consider the 4x4 just for the extra few inches of ground clearance...although that could make getting in the camper more challenging.
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:46 PM   #20
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I'll take 4 doors if I can't get 6

Moosetags, here's my choice.
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Old 02-22-2011, 12:15 AM   #21
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We are definitely going with the 4x4. Many of the places that we go Moosing require 4 wheel drive. We use it in the Suburban all the time. We are even considering a winch for the front of the new truck.

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Old 02-22-2011, 02:00 AM   #22
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Brian -

Thumbs up on the winch. We're thinking of adding one. You just never know when it might come in handy - hopefully never.

We have a Ford F350 XLT 7.3 PSD crew cab AND a long bed. It can be a bit of a bear when trying to squeeze the Airstream into the small campsites/driveways in Yosemite. When faced with the very short driveway with a huge berm opposite it, we had to unhitch the trailer from the truck, reposition the truck and hook up again and then shift back and forth several more times in order to get the trailer into the twenty five foot driveway.

Admittedly, when towing the Airstream there will be some roads, such as those with no outlets, that we will either not be exploring or we'll be employing the use of the reverse gear quite a bit. Added up, the truck and trailer are over 50 feet long.

We need the long bed as we usually haul quite a bit of stuff with us when we go to Burning Man. We chose the crew cab so that we could bring friends and family, and now our dog, Raymond, with us when we tow the Airstream.

We've never had a crew crab before, but boy howdy, it sure is roomy. We've often remarked that we could sleep in the cab if we had to and would probably be rather comfortable.

Good luck with your decision. We're sure you'll find the perfect solution to your needs.

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Old 02-22-2011, 06:35 AM   #23
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Tight spaces or not, I'd go with the dually. Camper AND trailer make for a heckuva load on the tires. I'm no fan of this type, overall, but for this combination it's a natural. I think it's asking too much from an SRW out on the highway.
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Old 02-22-2011, 07:21 AM   #24
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Also + 1 for the crew cab long bed.
We have had 3 configurations, '00 long bed ex cab gasser, '03 long bed quad cab diesel, '06 long bed crew cab diesel. The most useful is the '06 CC LB. Fold up the seats for protected and accessable storage, and down for conventional use, the grand kids baby seats etc. Recomend a bed cap, the extra space is great! My next one will be the same setup. The long wheelbase makes it very stable. Parking lots take some tecnique adjustment
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Old 02-22-2011, 07:31 AM   #25
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How you're going to use it I would for sure go for the crew cab. Some of the truck campers can make good use of the extra space above for a larger bed area. Also sounds like you might have more than 2 people frequently and the traveling comfort for people in the back will thank you for it.

Love the Florida panhandle! We just drove through and spent some time in Mexico beach. Indian pass, cape san blas and st George island are incredible. Need a house sitter while you are gone?
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:49 AM   #26
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by all means - go crew cab. we looked at the extd cab with the 'flap' doors and we would have regretted getting it.

the extd cab w/the full doors gives you room for extra people, bikes, stuff, etc.

also more roof top length for other items.

sure - parking it takes some effort but i usually try to find a pull through spot in the parking lot. or even park further away and walk a bit.

the crew cab length, plus tow-haul option, makes pulling our 22' AS a breeze.

i don't think there is any more gas use on the crew vs the extd.

at the dealer, let them steer you to the extd, show a lot of interest, then flip them to the crew for the same price

good luck on your search.
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Old 02-22-2011, 12:50 PM   #27
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Hey Brian, I think you have probably heard enough by now?! But az-streamer makes a good point; IIRC roof rack systems are made only for CC configurations at min…when we set up our truck, neither Thu or Yak made systems for Ext cab trucks (too short). Now this may have changed…but the laws of physics have not.
I know you Guys always carry your kayaks, so this may be a deal breaker for you.

I suspect there will be times you will be using the truck + AS sans TC and would want to carry your yaks up top…

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Old 02-22-2011, 02:03 PM   #28
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I don't know anything about the GM trucks, but our experience with Toyotas is:

1. Rear doors hinged at the rear are a real pain in a parking lot if the rear door cannot be opened without the front door opened first. With both side doors open, the doors are in the way when there's a car next to you. Unloading a shopping cart is not simple. Since they are called "suicide doors" maybe they are dangerous, though I've never seen anyone commit suicide by falling out of them (actually I think it would be easier with front hinged doors).

2. A really long truck can be difficult to park in towns (not just along the curb), so I'd opt for the less long cab, but not the "standard" one without a back seat. Some downtown parking lots are really hard to drive around and a longer truck sticks way out into the driving lane asking for someone to hit it. I usually park away from other vehicles to avoid problems and door dings, but that's not always possible. A 10" difference just makes it harder.

3. 4WD drive roads may be hard to travel with a long truck, especially if there are switchbacks. Any full size pickup is too big for many of these roads here in Colorado and working around very tight curves isn't easy and sometimes dangerous with steep drops and severe grades, so I'd rather have as short a truck as I can reasonably get away with.

4. I'm sure you have checked this out but I'll ask anyway—aren't there 6 1/2' truck campers? I'm sure they are cramped compared to an 8' or an Airstream and may not have much in the way of a bathroom, but it would make it simpler.

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