Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 12-08-2014, 02:04 PM   #1
3 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
Currently Looking...
Mineral Bluff , Georgia
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 130
Ford Flex Receiver Mod (CanAm)

As a review, we purchased a 2011 Ford Flex AWD w/EcoBoost to tow our CampLite 21BHS. Tow limits are 4,500 lb total (with weight distribution) and 450 lb tongue weight.

Our CampLite 21BHS advertised 3,499 lbs empty and 440 lbs tongue weight - the basis on which we thought the Flex would make a good tow vehicle.

Andy at CanAm RV, helped me select the EAZLift hitch and Husky sway control.



Had the rig out on several long trips and it tows very well. The EcoBoost V6 has 365 hp, so power's not a problem.

Got everything tweaked just so for a pretty level setup and smooth ride:



When we finally got around to weighing our trailer loaded, the trailer was at 4,480 lbs (whew!).

But the tongue weight was 624 lbs, way over the 450 limit.

I contacted Andy and he said the Flex could easily handle that if the receiver was reinforced - the limit was due to the receiver just attaching to the unit construction rear with insufficient support. Here's what it looked like "before":



That's the Class III Ford hitch. Even to the untrained eye, there sure does not seem to be a lot of support for it.

Anyway, Andy said they've done hundreds of Flex's, and we were headed to Indiana anyway (sans trailer), and we like to road trip, so scheduled for last Tuesday.

Anyway, here's the "after":



Hard to see, but the forward end attaches to a thick plate that itself attaches to suspension attach points.

Have not tried it out yet. Don't really expect any discernible difference in handling, though I guess there could be a subtle difference with the weight more solidly being transferred towards the front wheel and the whole contraption a bit more rigid. Regardless, we'll still try to minimize the tongue weight as much as possible via loading.

Next trip is planned to FL in January. I'll report back on how it goes.
__________________

__________________
FastEddieB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-08-2014, 03:44 PM   #2
Rivet Master
 
Road Ruler's Avatar
 
Currently Looking...
St. Catharines , South Western Ontario
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 2,364
Images: 39
Ed, your rig and set up look real nice. The power from the Ecoboost must be amazing. The hitch mod looks good too. Similar to what was done to our G35.

It is easy to see why Ford put such a low tongue weight rating on the vehicle with their lame receiver.
__________________

__________________
Airstreams..... The best towing trailers on the planet!
Road Ruler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2014, 10:17 AM   #3
Rivet Master
 
Vintage Kin Owner
N/A , N/A
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 995
Images: 1
Nice looking rig

By any chance, do u have CAT scale measurements before/after the third leg was added? I'm curious on the effect of the third leg in weight distribution.
Thanks


Sent from my iPhone using Airstream Forums
__________________
rostam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2014, 11:49 AM   #4
3 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
Currently Looking...
Mineral Bluff , Georgia
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by rostam View Post
Nice looking rig
Thanks. Perfect for us for now. Still considering an AirStream in the future.

Quote:
By any chance, do u have CAT scale measurements before/after the third leg was added? I'm curious on the effect of the third leg in weight distribution.
Thanks
Sorry, no.

Got the loaded trailer weight at the local recycling place, weighing everything together (10,000 lbs - to the nearest 20 lbs) and then just the Flex. That's where we got the 4,480 lb loaded trailer weight (1/2 fresh water, no grey or black).

For the tongue weight, just borrowed a digital scale set purchased by EAA (Experimental Aircraft Ass'n) members:



Results:

Loaded, with hitch as in photo: 625 lbs
Loaded, w/o hitch: 586 lbs
Loaded, but empty pass-through storage: 516 lbs

BTW. fresh water is right over the axles, so should not make a difference. Black and grey are behind the axle, so they should reduce tongue weight.

Our plan is just to try to keep tongue weight down. Some of the heavier tools from the pass-through storage can go on one of the bunks, placing it behind the axle, that sort of thing.

And someday we really should get the whole thing weighed properly, I suppose.
__________________
FastEddieB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2014, 12:05 PM   #5
Rivet Master
 
Vintage Kin Owner
N/A , N/A
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 995
Images: 1
Quote:
Originally Posted by FastEddieB View Post
Thanks. Perfect for us for now. Still considering an AirStream in the future.







Sorry, no.



Got the loaded trailer weight at the local recycling place, weighing everything together (10,000 lbs - to the nearest 20 lbs) and then just the Flex. That's where we got the 4,480 lb loaded trailer weight (1/2 fresh water, no grey or black).



For the tongue weight, just borrowed a digital scale set purchased by EAA (Experimental Aircraft Ass'n) members:







Results:



Loaded, with hitch as in photo: 625 lbs

Loaded, w/o hitch: 586 lbs

Loaded, but empty pass-through storage: 516 lbs



BTW. fresh water is right over the axles, so should not make a difference. Black and grey are behind the axle, so they should reduce tongue weight.



Our plan is just to try to keep tongue weight down. Some of the heavier tools from the pass-through storage can go on one of the bunks, placing it behind the axle, that sort of thing.



And someday we really should get the whole thing weighed properly, I suppose.

I must admit, your trailer is one the nicest looking SOBs I have ever seen. I just googled it and realized it's an ALL aluminum trailer! No frame rust and no floor rot (I wish Airstream would follow suit). The floor plan is very nice and it has a slide out. Excellent pick


Sent from my iPhone using Airstream Forums
__________________
rostam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2014, 12:34 PM   #6
3 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
Currently Looking...
Mineral Bluff , Georgia
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by rostam View Post
I must admit, your trailer is one the nicest looking SOBs I have ever seen. I just googled it and realized it's an ALL aluminum trailer! No frame rust and no floor rot (I wish Airstream would follow suit). The floor plan is very nice and it has a slide out. Excellent pick
Thanks!

One of the turnoffs regarding the AirStreams were the problems I was reading about leaks and floor rot on AirStreams just over 5 years old.

Since THOR is now the common parent to AirStream and LivinLite, it seems like an aluminum-floored AirStream would be feasible. It would certainly help push us in that direction.

It can't be THAT expensive, since an aluminum-framed and -floored CampLite comes in at roughly half the price of an equivalently-sized AirStream.

Still, no denying there's a certain something about AirStreams, and we can easily picture ourselves in one somewhere down the road!
__________________
FastEddieB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2014, 12:39 PM   #7
Rivet Monster
 
wahoonc's Avatar

 
1975 31' Sovereign
1980 31' Excella II
Sprung Leak , North Carolina
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 7,174
Images: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by FastEddieB View Post
Thanks!

One of the turnoffs regarding the AirStreams were the problems I was reading about leaks and floor rot on AirStreams just over 5 years old.

Since THOR is now the common parent to AirStream and LivinLite, it seems like an aluminum-floored AirStream would be feasible. It would certainly help push us in that direction.

It can't be THAT expensive, since an aluminum-framed and -floored CampLite comes in at roughly half the price of an equivalently-sized AirStream.

Still, no denying there's a certain something about AirStreams, and we can easily picture ourselves in one somewhere down the road!
Some of the Argosys made by Airstream had aluminum composite floors.

Aaron
__________________
....so many Airstreams....so little time...
WBCCI #XXXX AIR #2495
Why are we in this basket...and where are we going
wahoonc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2014, 07:44 AM   #8
Rivet Master
 
MrUKToad's Avatar

 
2011 28' International
Chatham , Ontario
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 1,372
Images: 17
Blog Entries: 13
That's a nice, neat modification to the Flex hitch receiver. It'll help resist the torque that the weight distribution system will apply to the receiver, and will allow better transfer of some of that tongue weight forward to the front of the tow vehicle. As Road Ruler said, that Ford receiver looked a little lightweight before the mod.
__________________
Steve; also known as Mr UK Toad

"You can't tow that with that!"

http://toadsoftowedhaul.com
MrUKToad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2014, 09:44 AM   #9
Rivet Master
 
andreasduess's Avatar
 
1984 34' International
Toronto , Ontario
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 1,496
Images: 5
Blog Entries: 1
Nice job. I've seen a bunch of Ford Flex with the Ecoboost engine used as a TV now, people seem to be very happy with them.
__________________
andreasduess is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2014, 12:02 PM   #10
Rivet Master
 
Road Ruler's Avatar
 
Currently Looking...
St. Catharines , South Western Ontario
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 2,364
Images: 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by FastEddieB View Post
As a review, we purchased a 2011 Ford Flex AWD w/EcoBoost to tow our CampLite 21BHS. Tow limits are 4,500 lb total (with weight distribution) and 450 lb tongue weight.


Ed, that really is a good looking trailer. I see they have the heavy battery at the very front. That adds a lot to the tongue weight. In our vintage 23 they installed the battery just behind the rear wheels in a special compartment. wondering if there is an option for you to move it back somewhere too???

__________________
Airstreams..... The best towing trailers on the planet!
Road Ruler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2014, 04:32 PM   #11
Tom T
 
Tom_T's Avatar
 
Vintage Kin Owner
Orange , California
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 553
Nice post & pix Eddy, Flex+TT combo look great too!

This would be a good place to remind folks to remind CanAm about the work order, as per our emails.

Happy Holidays!
Tom
///////
__________________
Tom T (janabanana48's other half )
Orange CA
1960 Avion T20, #2 made, Hensley Cub, TV tbd- looking for 08-14 Cayenne S
1988 VW Vanagon Westfalia CamperGL (Orig Owner)
Tom_T is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2014, 05:10 PM   #12
3 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
Currently Looking...
Mineral Bluff , Georgia
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom_T View Post
Nice post & pix Eddy, Flex+TT combo look great too!

This would be a good place to remind folks to remind CanAm about the work order, as per our emails.

Happy Holidays!
Tom
///////
Thanks!

To avoid running afoul of the mods here, yet still to not leave people hanging as to what happened at CanAm last week...

...I saved an account of what happened as a pdf file in DropBox.

If anyone is curious, it's here:

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/...Experience.pdf

A copy of what I sent Tom. I think it speaks for itself. For those who don't want to click, let me say our experience was, on the whole, positive.

The head's up is simply that when you drop off your vehicle, don't assume anything!

Oh, and Happy Holidays!
__________________
FastEddieB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2014, 12:37 AM   #13
Tom T
 
Tom_T's Avatar
 
Vintage Kin Owner
Orange , California
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 553
Yeah - Eddie's advice to me was essentially, just remind them of what the expected work is on tap, as they can forget - people being fallible humans & all.

I've been going to the same mechanic for my cars almost 40 years now, since Summer 1975, & he teases me about the lists I always make of what needs done - but they're as much for my memory as anything!
.... what with my half-zymers & wut-not ... you know, where I only remember half the s**t half the time!
__________________
Tom T (janabanana48's other half )
Orange CA
1960 Avion T20, #2 made, Hensley Cub, TV tbd- looking for 08-14 Cayenne S
1988 VW Vanagon Westfalia CamperGL (Orig Owner)
Tom_T is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2014, 10:31 AM   #14
Rivet Master
 
andreasduess's Avatar
 
1984 34' International
Toronto , Ontario
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 1,496
Images: 5
Blog Entries: 1
Quote:
Originally Posted by FastEddieB View Post
Thanks!

To avoid running afoul of the mods here, yet still to not leave people hanging as to what happened at CanAm last week...

...I saved an account of what happened as a pdf file in DropBox.

If anyone is curious, it's here:

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/...Experience.pdf

A copy of what I sent Tom. I think it speaks for itself. For those who don't want to click, let me say our experience was, on the whole, positive.

The head's up is simply that when you drop off your vehicle, don't assume anything!

Oh, and Happy Holidays!
Your experience with Can Am's service appointments mirrors ours. The work, when performed, has always been impeccable, but the booking process is difficult and frequently frustrating.

I ordered the installation of a dishwasher last fall, when we dropped our trailer off for winter storage. I then followed up once a month. First the response was that they would get to it later, then that the trailer was snowed in and could not be accessed.

Spring arrived and I started calling every two weeks. Nothing happened. I then set a pick-up date and got a promise that all work was to be ready and the trailer waiting. I did not hear back. I then called a week ahead of pick-up to double check that the work had been done - it had not and the service rep had the nerve to suggest that they would order the dishwasher (it had not even been ordered yet) and install at some future date, which would of course involve a trip to London.

At this point I did blow my top and threatened to call Andy directly to express my opinion about the competency of his staff. This led to a dishwasher being purchased and shipped express (on their dime) and installed ready for us to pick up our trailer at the agreed date.

So far, I am having a 50% success rate with my trailer being ready when they say it will be ready. I am putting up with this because the work is excellent and the people are genuinely nice and helpful, but they can be disorganized.
__________________

__________________
andreasduess is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Ford Flex anyone? dlb435 Tow Vehicles 56 07-11-2014 06:02 PM
Can a Ford Flex tow an Airstream Nigel Tow Vehicles 204 12-01-2013 07:47 PM
Preowned 2008 International CCD 16 from CanAm RV rjd111 2005 and newer - Bambi all models 2 11-09-2013 01:39 PM
Ford Flex as a TV - input, please? Dia Tow Vehicles 4 09-01-2013 02:53 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:09 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.