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Old 09-09-2014, 06:52 AM   #15
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Old 09-09-2014, 06:57 AM   #16
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When it comes to towing gas mileage, I have towed our trailer with both a F150 5.4 V8 3:55 rear end, and a F250 6.8 V10 4:10 rear end. Believe it or not I get about 1/2 mile better with the F250. I use an Andersen hitch that takes a lot of the shock out of the ride. I know that a lot of people may disagree about the hitch, but that's life on the highway.
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Old 09-09-2014, 07:21 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by msmcv51 View Post
When it comes to towing gas mileage, I have towed our trailer with both a F150 5.4 V8 3:55 rear end, and a F250 6.8 V10 4:10 rear end. Believe it or not I get about 1/2 mile better with the F250. I use an Andersen hitch that takes a lot of the shock out of the ride. I know that a lot of people may disagree about the hitch, but that's life on the highway.
Hard to believe a larger, heavier truck with a larger engine gets better gas mileage than a smaller one, both being gas modern engines.

And yes, I used the Andersen hitch. Those two little plastic bushings when compressed for weight distribution are taking up very little shock. One of the many reasons we no longer use it.
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Old 09-09-2014, 07:34 AM   #18
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3.55

3.55 rear end has to be the worst gear you you would want for towing. It is just set for fuel mileage outside of town and running down the 'Super-slab' empty. I had that rear in a half ton truck. Bought my first travel trailer, not a large one 21' 3500-4000 pounds. It was ok in flat land, or the tidewater region.
If you are headed to any hills or mountains, get ready for high rpm in second or third gear, and hanging out in the truck lane on the interstate.
A 3.73 rear seems to be very popular with good power and decent fuel mileage when not pulling. 3.90 or 4.10 are also good for pulling and not being super-extreme in gearing.
I have 4.10 now, and it provides excellent fuel mileage, even when you have a 28' International behind you. (provided you can keep your foot from going deep on the accelerator)
Heck if you can find a Dodge Power Wagon, they come with 4.56 from the factory. (PW may not be optimal for towing as it has High ground clearence) That maybe to extreme, not made for running down the hard road, I digress.
You really don't want 3.55 unless you are just getting groceries ( or want a uni-body vehicle) IMHO
Have a good one !
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Old 09-09-2014, 08:44 AM   #19
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As a different viewpoint on the 3.55 topic, we towed our 23FB with an '11 F150 Ecoboost (3.55 rear) about 7,500 miles this summer. We experienced hills through SD, WY, MT; as well as I-64, I-81 and I-40 through WV, VA and TN. Never once did we have trouble maintaining speed either up or down the hills.

Our feeling, given our towing combo, is that we were very comfortable with our speed and stability the whole way.
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Old 09-09-2014, 09:03 AM   #20
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We have used the 3.55 rear end in our 2012 Ram 5.7 for the last two years coast-to-coast and border-to-border several times without problems. I use tow/haul mode and put the transmission in the gear we need for the task, as we should.

That said, if we had a larger trailer or carrying more stuff I would certainly consider a 3.92 rear end if buying a new truck.
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Old 09-09-2014, 09:33 AM   #21
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According to all my reading on this forum, you can't tow with anything less than a International Frieghtliner. Anything less is suicide.




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Old 09-09-2014, 10:16 AM   #22
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According to all my reading on this forum, you can't tow with anything less than a International Frieghtliner. Anything less is suicide.
<<heavy sarcasm>>
That's a no-brainer, otherwise there are lots of choices.
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Old 09-09-2014, 10:41 AM   #23
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As a different viewpoint on the 3.55 topic, we towed our 23FB with an '11 F150 Ecoboost (3.55 rear) about 7,500 miles this summer. We experienced hills through SD, WY, MT; as well as I-64, I-81 and I-40 through WV, VA and TN. Never once did we have trouble maintaining speed either up or down the hills.

Our feeling, given our towing combo, is that we were very comfortable with our speed and stability the whole way.
Yep, its all about what you feel is safe and comfortable with. I didn't say 3.55 wouldn't pull it.
Have a good one !
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Old 09-09-2014, 11:17 AM   #24
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IF you travel heavy, then as Airrogent said, a 3/4 ton would be a better option.

The good thing about a 3/4 ton Suburban is that it can tow pretty much any Airstream. So if you decide to move to a bigger trailer you do not need to change your TV.
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Old 09-09-2014, 11:32 AM   #25
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IF you travel heavy, then as Airrogent said, a 3/4 ton would be a better option.

The good thing about a 3/4 ton Suburban is that it can tow pretty much any Airstream. So if you decide to move to a bigger trailer you do not need to change your TV.
The only thing about a 3/4 ton hooked to a 16' Airstream it may beat the heck out of it, as Airrogent may decide after reattaching his fallen upper cabinet.
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Old 09-09-2014, 11:55 AM   #26
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Payload is nice, but seriously our E150 van had a 6600 capacity, so even with 2500# of trailer behind it, that's still room for a few thousand pounds of gear. The tongue weight is about 250lb, which is no worse than carrying my uncle (even if he sits on the bumper it's not going to effect the truck much). I seriously cannot see any reason to go bigger than a half ton for a Caravel, and in fact we went down to the Flex, which is a v6. That significantly improved our gas milage over the old 5.7L We do travel light however. I guess if you really like to pack on lots of heavy gear you might eventually exceed capacity, but I know I'm not worried about that.

If you have some other reason for wanting a big truck, then it will do the job, or if you're expecting to upgrade to something bigger, then that's a reason. But if you're looking to use the Caravel as an excuse for going 3/4, I can't see any justification there.
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Old 09-09-2014, 12:00 PM   #27
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IF you travel heavy, then as Airrogent said, a 3/4 ton would be a better option.

The good thing about a 3/4 ton Suburban is that it can tow pretty much any Airstream. So if you decide to move to a bigger trailer you do not need to change your TV.
A 3/4 ton truck, properly equipped, does not pull an Airstream, any better than a properly equipped 1/2 ton truck.

Sure it can carry more weight, but that has nothing to do with towing an Airstream.

History shows that the heavier the tow vehicle, the rougher the ride for the trailer and the truck passengers, and more long term damage to the trailer.

Bigger sometimes, is worse than smaller.

Brute force, is not a good tow vehicle for an Airstream trailer, plus being a waste of money.

Andy
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Old 09-09-2014, 02:38 PM   #28
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Well I guess I have to much. Please do not use International in the same line as Freightliner. I have a 3.85 rear end and get 10 mpg with my truck. Get an Airsafe hitch and that will stop the beating up of the TT. Right now my truck alone only weighs in at 15000 lbs.
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