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Old 11-16-2009, 07:05 PM   #1
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Ford F150 with 7300 Max. Trailer Wt. ?'s

I'm an absolute (retired) newbie planning on taking the plunge into the camping world of travel and excitement. I am considering buying a 2009/2010 Ford 150 Lariat/Kings Ranch with maximum towing package, camera etc. for towing an A/S 25', 27' or 28' ft trailer. I'm planning on an out West, East, Canada etc. voyages and may want to take the A/S on the beach (from Austin, TX.)

Questions:

1. Most come with a 3.55 slip axle but must purchase the 3.73 for the maximum tow package right?

2. Considering a 4x4 but would it be more practical to just go 4x2? Pros and cons.

2. 18" or 20" tires? Pros and cons.

3. Navigation included with vehicle or purchase one after-market?

4. Colors? Dark/Light? Black looks great but White/Silver etc. may seem more practical for showing less dirt. Any recommendations pros/cons?

5. Hitch recommendations?

6. Any other recommendations for Ford 150/towing options, needs or nice(ities)?

Thanks
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Old 11-16-2009, 07:12 PM   #2
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Welcome! The new model F150 with tow package is over 11k, and includes built in brake controller.

When you go to the 20's, it lowers the tow capacity, and I the 355 rear end is what you want for capacity (thats what you will find with the tow package).

I'vebeen looking at them myself here lately. Here's a link to the F150 homepage....

2010 Ford F-150 Features | Official Site of the Ford F-150 | FordVehicles.com

Good Luck!

Heres another chart....

http://www.trailerboats.com/images/e...RatingsPDF.pdf

Al
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Old 11-16-2009, 07:37 PM   #3
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Greetings from the Florida Panhandle

First off, welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us.

We pull a 2005 25FB, named Lucy. We have pulled Lucy over 50,000 miles and have spent over 500 nights in her in the last three years. We pull Lucy with 3/4 ton Suburbans. Lucy weight 7400# ready to camp.

If you plan to pull heavier than Lucy, you may want to consider a 3/4 ton tow vehicle. We pulled Lucy with our 1/2 ton Tahoe, and found the towing experience less than satisfying.

Do as you will, but a 1/2 truck of any brand may not be up to the job of towing heavy.

Remember that an insufficient tow vehicle is the number one cause of a perfectly good Airstream becoming a very expensive piece of yard art.

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Old 11-16-2009, 07:43 PM   #4
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RavenDog,
I just got a 2010 F150 on Nov. 5. It has the tow pkg w/3.73 axles, 5.4 gas engine, supercrew, and a lot of other goodies. My previous TV was an '06 F250SD/6.0 PSD. It pulled my 8400 # '02 31' classic w/slide easily. The ride was a little rough. We took the F150 to Omaha today for our 2nd outing in it. The ride is smooth !!! It has the 6.5' box and 18" wheels. The 6 speed tranny feels absolutely seamless when it shifts. We haven't pulled the AS yet, but I pulled a 31' Holiday Rambler weighing about the same as the AS with an '03 F150. The 5.4 had the power but needed more gears than that tranny had. I have had two 5.4s before this one and know they have the power to do the job. We got the Ingot Silver color to best match the AS. We will head for Bonita Springs, FL on Jan. 1. Can't wait to be on the road !!!!

Dan
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Old 11-16-2009, 07:54 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RavenDog View Post

1. Most come with a 3.55 slip axle but must purchase the 3.73 for the maximum tow package right?

2. Considering a 4x4 but would it be more practical to just go 4x2? Pros and cons.

2. 18" or 20" tires? Pros and cons.

3. Navigation included with vehicle or purchase one after-market?

4. Colors? Dark/Light? Black looks great but White/Silver etc. may seem more practical for showing less dirt. Any recommendations pros/cons?

5. Hitch recommendations?

6. Any other recommendations for Ford 150/towing options, needs or nice(ities)?

Thanks
yo dog!!!

1. either is fine, the new engine LIKES revin'

2. 4x4= LESS towing capacity. ever plan on being STUCK just ONCE on wet grass, mud, sand or HIGH when it snows ???

2. 18s, more tire options. (and you got 2 questions with #2....) details here...http://www.airforums.com/forums/f463...-tv-28331.html

3. got a MAP? seldom are oem navs the MOST recent technology, go garmin.

4. ya want US 2 pick a color? white/silver 2 tone. (or red and blue my school colors!)

5. here...http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...ide-57179.html

6. get the INTEGRATED brake controller ford offers, it is AWESOME...

6. camper SHELL or toneau cover depending on GEAR to be hauled (bikes, gensets, canoes, tiki lights)

6. and i like oem sun roofs on trucks too...
_____________

IF u opt for a 28ft stream, OR ever go larger a 250 is a better towing choice.


cheers
2air'
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Old 11-16-2009, 07:54 PM   #6
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RavenDog
I forgot to answer all your questions. We got the Navigation system - its part of a $2400 pkg. (A little pricey).The nav system is really impressive.I have seen Garmins, etc. Ours is a 4x4. We didn't want to be caught in Iowa in a snow storm. We got the camera / backup alarm system and the tailgate step among several other really nice packages.

Dan
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Old 11-16-2009, 08:55 PM   #7
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Ravendog,

you need to make sure whatever you do do not get a tow vehicle with too much suspension to carry the load, a distribution hitch with too much capacity to keep the front end down so you can maintain control and most of all that you do not ask technical questions of Airstream cause they don't have the answers on how these factors can supposedly mess up your new trailer.

Please take the time to research this site for all of the issues that comes with owning one of these trailers so that you can be better informed than either the dealer or the guys behind the brand name. They only want your money and do not publish the intricate details of how to avoid damage to their product due to its lack of robustness to handle traveling over the paved road.

As far as the vehicle goes the 3.73 rear will give you the muscle you will need to make the passes in your travels. A GPS navigator off the shelf from Best buy is far more flexible than the in dash unit. That is about a $1200 savings on the price tag of the truck right there. Make sure you get the correct wheel and tire combo. Too little sidewall can't carry the load. The 20's look cool but will heat up really quickly when loaded. If you could get 17" or 18" wheels that are forged that would be the ticket. You may also want to go with better brakes on the front (larger cross drilled and slotted from Baer or SSBC) if you plan to tow one of the larger trailers. A set of airbags for the rear end could help keep you off of the bumpstops and out of the overload leaf to help cushion the ride.
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Old 11-16-2009, 11:41 PM   #8
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Thanks for all your experiences and opinions!

1. I too like the looks of the 20 inch tires but if the 18 inches are better suited for towing etc. I will go with them. Any other experiences or recommendations on the 20 or 18 inch tires?

2. Not completely sure on the rear axle 3.55 or 3.73. Any more experiences or recommendations on this subject. Finding 3.73 has not been easy but if it makes the needed difference I'll go with it. None of the Ford salespeople I've talked with had a clue about the above when I brought up the towing capacities and the axle numbers......amazing!

3. Any more recommendations or advice on the navigation system? If a Garmin from Best Buy etc. will do the same thing, I could definitely use the savings for other needs.

4. I'll definitely get the Trailer Brake Control option.

5. Your right, the Ford people and the A/S salespersons both seem to know less than me about most of these items. I have done a great deal of research on this forum and at other sources - Great Help!!!

RavenDog
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Old 11-17-2009, 12:29 AM   #9
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I test drove the F250 6.4 Power Stroke Diesel. There's no question about it's pulling power and torque - lots of power! The size of the 250 definitely takes command.

The F150 drives great and is extremely quiet and smooth. Of course, the 250 has a more harsh ride and it lets you know it's a truck. Hard to make yourself want to make the move up to the 250 but I could definitely feel the difference......

Still not fully comprehensive on 3.55 and 3.73 rear ends.......

Definitely going with the 4X4.
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Old 11-17-2009, 01:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RavenDog View Post
... Of course, the 250 has a more harsh ride and it lets you know it's a truck...
this is true UNhitched.

but while towing the 250 actually gets smoother, less harsh and so on.

designed for the PURPOSE of towing, the 250s settles into it's intended use with a load.

again the 150 is fine for a 25, SOME use it 4 towing a 28...

but IF u ever opt for a larger stream,

and many total noobs want a bigger trailer (2 foot itis)

the 250 is THEN a better choice.

the 3.55 rear end has been PROMOTED more these last 2 years

AFTER the fuel price spike 2 years back.

it provides a TINY bit better mileage (especially not towing) but the differences are SMALL in real world use.
___________

so find the trailer size/floorplan/style u LIKE and make sure the tv is uP2 that task, and the next size larger.
___________

here is the tire/wheel size thread i actually intended to link earlier...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f438...ize-25739.html

it's NOT exactly on point (18 vs 20) but much of the info and debate applies here too.

20s are generally MORE expensive tires and while common on city trucks for the looks...

on the roads and out in the wilds towing, a 17 or 18 with MORE sidewall and MORE air volume is a better choice.

20s are about bling rather than bang.

cheers
2air'
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Old 11-17-2009, 06:49 AM   #11
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My thoughts.......

Quote:
Originally Posted by RavenDog View Post
Questions:

1. Most come with a 3.55 slip axle but must purchase the 3.73 for the maximum tow package right?

2. Considering a 4x4 but would it be more practical to just go 4x2? Pros and cons.

2. 18" or 20" tires? Pros and cons.

3. Navigation included with vehicle or purchase one after-market?

4. Colors? Dark/Light? Black looks great but White/Silver etc. may seem more practical for showing less dirt. Any recommendations pros/cons?

5. Hitch recommendations?

6. Any other recommendations for Ford 150/towing options, needs or nice(ities)?

Thanks
1. With the 5.4 and even a 25', you will eventually want the 3.73, or even lower, so get it now.

2. Do you intend to go off road? What does the 4X4 cost in initial price, fuel mileage, and maintenance, and what does a tow truck cost in the event you do get stuck? (I've been towing for many, many years with a 2 wheel drive, and never been stuck, but don't go off road)

2 again. I've got 20's now and wish I had 18's. You cannot buy LT tires or even load range C 20's...only XL's, and the 20's cost lots more. But, if looks are the thing for you, then..........

3. Lots of GPS systems available, I'd get the aftermarket that I really wanted.

4. What colors do you like? I like blue or Red, but what does that matter?

5. Not a doubt in my mind, ProPride.

6. As others have said, you will want either a cover or a camper shell. I like the shell because it give you lots more storage/hauling room.

And last, welcome to the forums. Do some surfing here, and you will learn lots.
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Old 11-17-2009, 07:38 AM   #12
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I sold Fords for a bit (I sold myself mine). They can locate the vehicle you want anywhere, and if you want you can order the truck you want. Second, ask for a salesperson that is master certified. They have all the specs available, they just need to know where to look for it, usually in large black binders or the can call Ford directly.

I'm not promoting Ford, just happen to know about them. I went through a lot of trouble to get my master certification, but it was well worth it. I left that job in 06 or I could be more help with the new models.

Al
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Old 11-17-2009, 08:04 AM   #13
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Ravendog,

Just a little info on the diferences you will be buying into between the 150 and the 250.

Standard ring and pinon on the 250 is 3.73. The diesel is about an 8-9K option and is definately up to the task of pulling what ever you want to hook it to. The frame is much heavier and rigid. The 20" wheels are trouble for towing. There is simply not enough sidewall structure there to support the load. Aside from the powerplant in the 250 and ring and pinion selection availability the brakes are much bigger (thickness and diameter). I have owned mine for 10 years in March and have not had a single issue with it other than oil changes and brakes at 100K miles. The 250 comes with a tranny cooler.

The 150 is a nice ride if you are going to pull a ski boat or bass boat around or a small stream (25' and under). It weighs roughly about 1500 lbs less. The brakes are smaller. It is extremely smooth ride wise and power wise too. The standard axle ratio of 3.55 is for mileage. You can have the 3.73 installed by any 4x4 shop for $250-$300 per axle plus parts. If you go that route and you plan on towing on the beach opt for one of the selectable locking differentials out there for the extra traction in those situations for either vehicle. You do not want a locked diff in the slick stuff. Again stay away from the "bling" if you are going to tow. 17"-18" wheel and tire combos offer the best performance unless you have a med duty Sterling/IH, Frieghtliner, F-550, or something of the like.

On either of these vehicle choices ask for a Sunbelt Torque converter to be installed right out of the gate. This will save your transmission or change your trans fluid every 30K. I have had great success changing my trans fluid when it starts to turn from pink to the slightest tinge of brown and use the good stuff (quality synthetics). I own the 2 wd F-250 diesel and have stuck it on wet grass. These trucks are heavy and develop torque very early in the power curve. Once the tires slip you are going nowhere.
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Old 11-17-2009, 08:15 AM   #14
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I bought my truck used and it came with two items I wouldn't have bought: the factory slip-in plastic bedliner, and a LEER topper. Now I wouldn't be without either. The liner allows me to slide heavy items easily the length of this 8' bed, and the topper gives me a great deal of capacity. I use load-locks to secure cargo (Save-A-Load : World's Best Load Bars : Cargo Bars for Heavy Duty, Commercial & Private Vehicles)and recommend that other devices be used to keep things contained. With an 8' bed I could have gone with a tonneau cover, and have admired this one:

DiamondBack :: Covers as Tough as Your Truck

As well, CENTRAMATIC Balancers for TV & TT:

Centramatic

The next trailer I buy will be converted to disc brakes, and you'll find threads aplenty around here. At this point I'll go with KODIAK brakes and a CARLISLE actuator (and BRAKESMART control).

I could not recommend any more highly getting a Pro-Pride or Hensley Arrow hitch. It's cheap for what it does.

As to the truck, new or used, I'd convert the anti-roll bar bushings to polyurethane (polygraphite), and install KONI or BILSTEIN shocks the day after purchase.

For a man traveling, say, 5,000-miles annually, the 1/2-ton is an okay choice on a trailer of 7,000-lbs GVWR. To travel for several months at a time (10,000-miles or more), then the 3/4T is an easy choice. As FORD offers an extended cab (not a crewcab, in this instance) that would be my choice along with the 8' bed.

The best diesel is undoubtedly CUMMINS, and my choice is for the manual transmission. True that few are willing to row gears, but the rig control is unmatched by a slushbox. I find 4WD more trouble than it is worth (maintenance, repairs, weight, handling), but having factory tow hooks installed makes for a quick yank onto dry land. I believe that it is MANDATORY to have an anti-spin rear axle (Positraction, Sure Grip, whatever the name for the factory piece) and that that fluid should be changed 12-15,000 miles or annually). I get outstanding fuel mileage solo and towing with the Cummins Turbo Diesel.

Do you remember the old ads touting high compression, big V8 engines of long ago? How they "flattened out the hills"? This is what a turbodiesel will do. If I set my cruise control to exactly match a gas pickemup ahead of me, I'll eventually have to pull out and pass him. Trailer towing is easier as a result, as is solo driving. It isn't about the fear some exude because they have to downshift and maintain higher rpms for a long grade with a gasser, it is about being able to maintain a constant speed more easily. An exhaust brake is recommended (standard on DODGE).

There is a big difference in choosing powertrains, etc, from driving solo to driving loaded and towing. The "best" demo drive would be with a 5,000-lb trailer in tow. Maybe you know someone?
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