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Old 06-24-2002, 10:53 PM   #1
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Ford Windstar

I'm looking for input on using a Ford Windstar Van to tow my 31 foot Airstream.

I have a fairly heavy stabilizer hitch.

I tow on the Prairies, so there isn't many hills over six feet high.
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Old 06-24-2002, 11:28 PM   #2
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Windstar for a puller

According to the 2002 Ford towing guide the maximum loaded trailer weight for the Windstar is 3,500 lbs., the empty weight of your trailer is at least 4,800 lbs.

John
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Old 06-25-2002, 07:48 AM   #3
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Was this a troll?

Towing a 31' with a Windstar is so far from reason that I have a hard time deciding whether Gordon was serious or whether this was a troll.

If anyone does tow a 31' with a Windstar, I hope I'm not on the same highway.
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Old 06-25-2002, 09:09 AM   #4
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Windstar

Thanks for your reply. Sheesh, I only asked.
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Old 06-25-2002, 07:43 PM   #5
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Gordon,
This is the second post I have seen in the last 6-8 months asking about the Windstar. I have a '95 Astrovan with 4.3 and towing package. I would not consider towing my '77 31' Excella 500 because I think the vehicle is too light and in an emergency situation I do not think the Astro could control it. If wind blows me to the side sometimes, what would a semi do to the trailer and the van. Ditto for the Windstar. The seating capacity would be nice to have but the rest of the drivetrain would not be matched to the size of the trailer.
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Old 06-26-2002, 09:43 AM   #6
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Quote:
I'm looking for input on using a Ford Windstar Van to tow my 31 foot Airstream.
Quote:
Thanks for your reply. Sheesh, I only asked.
Gordon;

You did ask for input, and in my opinion you received it, and very good input at that. It might not be what you wanted to hear, but you did request it.

Having a stabilizer hitch or towing on the planes or even down the street does not make overloading an underrated vehicle any safer to begin with. You might be able to pull it and get it up to speed, but that is only part of the towing equation.

•High speed control or lack of.
•The brakes will fail from overheating.
•The transmission will fade and fail.
•Maneuverability in a panic situation will result in loss of control.
•The frame of the tow vehicle can seperate.
•Overheating of the engine.
•Legal Liability to your self and others.

Please be Safe and reconsider what you are doing.

Best Regards;
-BobbyWright
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Old 06-28-2002, 06:24 AM   #7
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Gordon,
All these replies come from people who most likely do not have actual experience of towing a large Airstream with a Ford Windstar.
You need to call Can-Am RV in Ontario at 1-866-226-2678 and ask for Andrew. They are the Airstream dealer here and one of the best anywhere. Andrew has extensive knowledge of tow vehicles of all kinds and will explain what to do to set up your Windstar. Perhaps he will give you the phone numbers of some of the many happy Windstar/Airstream owners so you can talk to people with actual experience of this combination.
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Old 06-28-2002, 07:15 AM   #8
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I stand by my Post.

Fords rating of 3500 lbs cannot be changed by simply putting an expensive hitch system on the vehicle.

I have heard of Can-Am RV and there practice of outfitting vehicles that are not Factory rated. It still does not make it right.

As I stated, there are many things that go into the equation of proper and SAFE towing. Safe towing is not just a matter of getting a vehicle up to speed and moving down the road.

Quote:
All these replies come from people who most likely do not have actual experience of towing a large Airstream with a Ford Windstar.
As for this, I can tell you upfront that I will never get experience towing a large trailer with an improper tow rig. Also, as a Moderator on this site I have a certain responsibilty to assure that SAFE and ACCURATE information is posted. A Ford Windstar is a MINI Van. Its intended use is for hauling kids, pets and groceries, not 2.5 tons of steel, wood, water, propane, aluminum AND kids,pets and groceries down a highway at 65mph. The people who have replied to this Post know how to properly configure a vehicle for Safe towing.

Best Regards;
-BobbyWright
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Old 06-28-2002, 12:59 PM   #9
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My input is......

Don't.

>>>>>>>>>>>>Action

Could a given you lots of data however.....
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Old 06-28-2002, 10:27 PM   #10
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Windstar towing 31 footer?

Ditto what BobbyW wrote, There is good reason you dont see any "real practical experience" people towing a large trailer with a Windstar, it cant be done!! the figures speak for themselves it wouldnt matter if he had a hensley hitch pulling it the windstar cant pull it without ruining the engine, transmission, suspension, etc. that doesnt include the complete lack of safety not only for your own life and family but us that you share the road with you. So its not just an experienced thing its a safety thing, and safety is no accident it must be planned!.

John
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Old 06-29-2002, 02:24 AM   #11
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Exclamation Windstar..

Just read in the paper, whereas FORD is recalling over 250k Windstars? For, of all things, defective brakes system.
Might wanta check into this..
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Old 06-29-2002, 06:14 AM   #12
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This is a controversial subject to say the least, however I also stand by my post.

Manufacturer's tow ratings are BULL!

Try driving a Ford Expedition, rated to tow approximately 8000lbs, and you'll want to sue the Ford Motor Company for producing the most unstable tow vehicle out there.Short wheelbase, long rear overhang, high centre of gravity and sloppy suspension do not make a safe tow vehicle.

I will continue to trust my own judgement based on actual experience from the driver's seat, not an engineer's office chair!
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Old 06-29-2002, 07:20 AM   #13
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Good discussion of tow ratings

Found this link on a newsgroup. I believe the 75% rule of thumb is a pretty good rule to follow. I am towing, at present, about 54% of my truuck's tow rating with the trailer loaded to maximum weight(never) and I am satisfied with the performance.

http://www.popuptimes.com/articles/a...eofthumb_1.asp

Netscape users may have trouble with this link since Netscape doesn't handle .asp links very well
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Old 06-29-2002, 07:29 AM   #14
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Link doesn't work

I had some trouble getting the link in the last message to work. It works OK for me now. You might get some errors while loading that page... just ignore them. Some programmer's fat finger error, no doubt. The info is worth the trouble.
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