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Old 12-08-2012, 10:01 PM   #71
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Interesting thread here because I was looking at some larger TVs recently...Suburban and Sequoia, but they are just too dang big for me. My wife will also most likely be driving this vehicle a little bit, so we started looking at the exact same Tahoe as the OP...5.3L V8 for a 19' Bambi (GVWR 4500#), and I was going to ask if anyone had any input on this. Looked like the Tahoe would be plenty powerful, but really wanted to ask people's opinion on this setup, as most of our traveling will be out west in and around the Rockies.

Thanks!
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:05 PM   #72
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For a 19'er, it is fine. I would still not skimp on a good no-compromises WD hitch setup.

My old SOB weighed in at 5500 loaded and I towed it all over the Rockies and Smokies with 4.3 liters, 5.7s and 5.3s. The 4.3 was WEAK. 5.7 and 5.3 were fine. Plus the new ones have 6 speeds, making them even better.
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:16 PM   #73
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After advise from Andy Thomson of Can-Am RV, we just bought a new 2012, 27' FB international signature and a Hensley hitch. Our TV is a Ford Expedition. Andy's team "fine tuned" our Hensley and it is amazing! We drove 1830 miles on our maiden voyage and most of the time on major highways at 65-75 mph with semi's whipping past us. Had one hand on the wheel and it was smooth sailing. Didn't even feel like we had a huge trailer behind us. I would highly recommend a new hitch first and advise from Andy before buying a big truck. If I (a Newbie woman) felt that safe on this long journey, so can you!!
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:40 AM   #74
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Zeppelin,
My rig is similar to yours. I have an '07 Burb with the 5.3, and I have a 25 foot Flying Cloud. Between them is the Equalizer hitch. We live in California and tow mountain passes on virtually every trip. We've logged about 10,000 miles towing this past year. The rig tows effortlessly and is as stable as a rock. We climb grades at the speed limit with no problem. BUT, it does require high revs, which the 5.3 is designed to do. I only have a 4 speed trans. If you are new to towing with the 5.3, you might be concerned about the high revs. I was at first. It is not a problem.

I think the Tahoe is a good TV and is common. And, we know the AS is the best towing TT there is. So, that brings us to the "thing in the middle" which is your hitch and your setup as being potentially the problem. Of course if money is no object a new TV might be the right answer. But if you like the Tahoe and want to keep it, I would think that a properly setup hitch is the first step to try. Whether it is a common one like EQ or Reese, or an exotic one like ProPride, it needs to be carefully setup. My money would be bet that your rig will suddenly behave very well.

One other difference we might have is that my Burb has the 20" 50 profile tires and they provide excellent resistance to sidewall flex. Even with my simple EQ hitch, I have no sway at all. I attribute part of that to my tires.

Best of luck to you getting it sorted out. My fairly simple rig tows like a dream, and is not in any way a "white knuckle" affair. My wife can drive it while I sleep.
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Old 12-09-2012, 09:28 PM   #75
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Thanks for the great post. As others have mentioned, forums have robust search functionality, but it's the anecdotal posts such as this that to me make posting a new thread worthwhile.

I'm feeling more comfortable with the idea that my Tahoe is sufficient to pull my Airstream. I think part of my problem is that I was alarmed at the high revs, but after hearing so many people say "that is normal," I'm going to treat it as such.

Regarding the hitch, a) I'm not convinced mine is properly set up and based on your story below, I could probably calibrate it to work properly. Alas, there is a certain vanity aspect to this, though, and I can't stand how this hitch sounds as I'm lugging around a campground looking for a spot. All the loud popping sounds and creaking and rubbing just doesn't sit well with me. If it was the best hitch out there, I'd live with it, but knowing that there is something better for towing that will also eliminate all this noise makes me want to upgrade.

Along with the hitch either being adjusted or upgraded (and that one accordingly adjusted), I'm finding more and more that tires are likely a big culprit here. Andy Thompson actually emailed me twice today and he spent about 10% of his emails on the hitch and about 90% on the tires. The ones I'm running have absolutely too much flex in the sidewall, and he made a few recommendations for me that I intend to utilize. I'm not sure how fast I will move on this as I'm not looking to go camping in the coming weeks, but I will certainly be doing it in the coming months and will keep those here posted as to the results.

-Zep

Quote:
Originally Posted by mstephens View Post
Zeppelin,
My rig is similar to yours. I have an '07 Burb with the 5.3, and I have a 25 foot Flying Cloud. Between them is the Equalizer hitch. We live in California and tow mountain passes on virtually every trip. We've logged about 10,000 miles towing this past year. The rig tows effortlessly and is as stable as a rock. We climb grades at the speed limit with no problem. BUT, it does require high revs, which the 5.3 is designed to do. I only have a 4 speed trans. If you are new to towing with the 5.3, you might be concerned about the high revs. I was at first. It is not a problem.

I think the Tahoe is a good TV and is common. And, we know the AS is the best towing TT there is. So, that brings us to the "thing in the middle" which is your hitch and your setup as being potentially the problem. Of course if money is no object a new TV might be the right answer. But if you like the Tahoe and want to keep it, I would think that a properly setup hitch is the first step to try. Whether it is a common one like EQ or Reese, or an exotic one like ProPride, it needs to be carefully setup. My money would be bet that your rig will suddenly behave very well.

One other difference we might have is that my Burb has the 20" 50 profile tires and they provide excellent resistance to sidewall flex. Even with my simple EQ hitch, I have no sway at all. I attribute part of that to my tires.

Best of luck to you getting it sorted out. My fairly simple rig tows like a dream, and is not in any way a "white knuckle" affair. My wife can drive it while I sleep.
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Old 12-09-2012, 09:31 PM   #76
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This is my exact dilemma, too. If necessary, I could buy a Suburban or F-250, but the reality is that I have a young family -- two toddlers -- and a very busy job. As a result, we're going to be blessed to get out 6-10 weekends a year to camp. So, do I really need to be buying some oversized powerhouse to pull my trailer when 90% of the time it's going to be doing mom duty? It would be nice to be able to compromise on that a bit, which is why I'm excited to see if working with hitch and tires might afford me the ability to stick with the Tahoe, which is just right for Momma and has the added bonus of being paid for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by muskypicker View Post
Interesting thread here because I was looking at some larger TVs recently...Suburban and Sequoia, but they are just too dang big for me. My wife will also most likely be driving this vehicle a little bit, so we started looking at the exact same Tahoe as the OP...5.3L V8 for a 19' Bambi (GVWR 4500#), and I was going to ask if anyone had any input on this. Looked like the Tahoe would be plenty powerful, but really wanted to ask people's opinion on this setup, as most of our traveling will be out west in and around the Rockies.

Thanks!
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Old 12-09-2012, 09:49 PM   #77
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So glad you spoke to Andy. Can-Am installed new tires on our brand new AS and I have his recommendation for new tires on our Expedition. You are in good hands!
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:10 PM   #78
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Quote:
I'm feeling more comfortable with the idea that my Tahoe is sufficient to pull my Airstream. I think part of my problem is that I was alarmed at the high revs, but after hearing so many people say "that is normal," I'm going to treat it as such.

Regarding the hitch, a) I'm not convinced mine is properly set up and based on your story below, I could probably calibrate it to work properly. Alas, there is a certain vanity aspect to this, though, and I can't stand how this hitch sounds as I'm lugging around a campground looking for a spot. All the loud popping sounds and creaking and rubbing just doesn't sit well with me. If it was the best hitch out there, I'd live with it, but knowing that there is something better for towing that will also eliminate all this noise makes me want to upgrade.

Along with the hitch either being adjusted or upgraded (and that one accordingly adjusted), I'm finding more and more that tires are likely a big culprit here. Andy Thompson actually emailed me twice today and he spent about 10% of his emails on the hitch and about 90% on the tires. The ones I'm running have absolutely too much flex in the sidewall, and he made a few recommendations for me that I intend to utilize.
-Zep
I'm glad you're getting good advice. Everything Andy has told me turned out to be very accurate.

You need to lubricate the bars where they go into the sockets on the ball mount. That will get rid of the popping and groaning. I've kept an old tub of wheel bearing grease handy for that purpose, but I've just learned from someone else on this forum that lithium grease (white lube) works well and doesn't attract dirt in the same way. Plus, you can simply spray it on.

WDHs don't need to be complicated to work well, just properly adjusted. I'm completely happy with my Eaz-Lift with a pair of friction sway controls.

If you can comfortably tow at 65-70 mph on the interstate (and there's no reason why you shouldn't be able to) and learn to enjoy the sound of that small block spinning at 4000 rpm in the hills, the time saved with a more powerful tow vehicle will be nothing compared to money saved.
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:37 AM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlbertF View Post
I'm glad you're getting good advice. Everything Andy has told me turned out to be very accurate.

You need to lubricate the bars where they go into the sockets on the ball mount. That will get rid of the popping and groaning. I've kept an old tub of wheel bearing grease handy for that purpose, but I've just learned from someone else on this forum that lithium grease (white lube) works well and doesn't attract dirt in the same way. Plus, you can simply spray it on.

WDHs don't need to be complicated to work well, just properly adjusted. I'm completely happy with my Eaz-Lift with a pair of friction sway controls.

If you can comfortably tow at 65-70 mph on the interstate (and there's no reason why you shouldn't be able to) and learn to enjoy the sound of that small block spinning at 4000 rpm in the hills, the time saved with a more powerful tow vehicle will be nothing compared to money saved.
Thanks for the note. It sounds like regardless, I need to switch tires out. Then, maybe I'll give this ol' Equalizer hitch a chance lubricated as you suggest before plopping down $2500 on the PPP. Appreciate the info.
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:53 AM   #80
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Zeppelin,

Here is my take on the EQ from a road test I did a couple years ago. I have since gone to a Hensley that I found used. A PPP is now my preferred setup. FWIW, I discuss lubrication and setup.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...est-76068.html
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Old 12-10-2012, 09:04 AM   #81
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Zeppelin,
One last thing about the hitch. The Equalizer is a popular, big selling hitch. So when it comes to noise in the campground - you are going to hear a lot of them! I don't give it too much thought. You can buy a Teflon (or something) pad for them which apparently works well to quite them down. I consider this noise a very minor drawback to an otherwise excellent hitch.
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Old 12-12-2012, 11:14 AM   #82
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EQ brand Bracket Jackets are pads that fit over the L-brackets and will reduce the grinding noise - and friction. Some say that the reduced friction impacts the sway control feature of the hitch but I have not found significant difference in sway control with the bracket jackets.

You can do a search for my previous detailed positive experiences with the EQ brand hitch over the years.

Progressmfg.com will give you detailed instructions on just how to adjust your EQ hitch; there is also a video.
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Old 12-12-2012, 12:41 PM   #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
that our 03 Classic has a listed GVWR of 7300lbs, (actual 7640lb), with a
Bob
I'm a little confused by this part of your statement, GVWR is a the mfg stated gross weight, you can't increase that figure. You can overload the trailer however. Is that what you are saying, loaded and ready to go your rig weighs 7640? This would certainly help to explain why the tongue weight is higher too.

Just asking for explaination of the statement.
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Old 12-13-2012, 08:40 AM   #84
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[QUOTE=crisen;1237402]I'm a little confused by this part of your statement, GVWR is a the mfg stated gross weight, you can't increase that figure. You can overload the trailer however. Is that what you are saying, loaded and ready to go your rig weighs 7640? This would certainly help to explain why the tongue weight is higher too.

Just asking for explaination of the statement.[/QUOTE

Yes, kind'a...the maximum hitched, loaded weight on the axles of our Classic is 640lbs over what the axles are rated for.
The trailer came equipped from the Factory with 2 3500lb axles, 300lbs LESS than the GVWR.

The Classic's are heavy buggers, but still deserve a decent CCC. 640lbs ain't much.

POI....this concern has been addressed on some of the later model trailers. Check your build sheet and weight sticker.

In my experience, tongue weight has always been a factory guess-ta-mate. I think you'll find that it's light across the board no matter how your loaded.

Bob
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