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Old 08-23-2015, 04:47 PM   #1
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My Tundra Takes on the Ike Gauntlet

In June I traveled out to Utah and on the way back towed over I-70 through Denver. Camped at Heaton campground on Dillon Lake the night before. This video shows the ascent to the tunnel after gassing up in Frisco, CO.

I normally keep the transmission in S drive in 5th gear and shift manually down when my speed drops on grades. If I find I'm letting up on the accelerator to maintain my 55mph to 60mph I shift up. In this ascent I never had the accelerator floored. My goal was to try to keep the speed between 55 and 60mph.

I filled up my next tank gas in Burlington, CO and hand calculated was 13.4mpg driving 60mph.

https://youtu.be/xMslHcUFfEo

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Old 08-23-2015, 08:18 PM   #2
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Looks good. Wife and I just checked it out.

Why did you buy the Ram?

We still love the Tundra 1794 we saw. Payload was only 1300-1400 though.

Curious what your cliff notes comparison of Tundra and Ram 2500 is.



Dan
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Old 08-23-2015, 11:40 PM   #3
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We plan to do some extensive traveling in about 3 years with our Airstream and being out on the road for months at a time.

Ther were two deficiencies with our Tundra; no 4x4 and enough payload to install a fiberglass cab high cap.

Th Tundra had a tonneau cover and I felt it wasn't going to offer the flexibily to carry the extra items we might need. With a cap I could slide in edgewise our reclining chairs and portable solar panel. With the tonneau I had to lay these items flat on the bed and they too up a lot of space.

A fiberglass cab weighs about 200-230lbs which would eat up more payload.

Minor issues with the Tundra was the 26g fuel tank and lack of rear view camera.

I also experienced some brake issues coming down the other side of the Ike tunnel. Under heavy braking to slow for some of the 40mph curves the brakes vibrated. I have a feeling I didn't have the gain set high enough for the trailer brakes. Since the Tundra doesn't have an ITBC the only place I could mount my Tekonsha P2 was under the dash below my right knell. It was very difficult to reach down while driving to use the manual brake lever.

I started researching almost a year ago for a replacement beginning with 1/2T trucks. Chevy 1500 was ou due to the 26g fuel tank and the 5.3L engine, Ram 1500 was out to slim payload. Ford was in the running but 2014 models had only 300lbs more payload than the Tundra. I waited foe the 2015 F150 but Ford reduced the GVWR ratings so the expected increase in payload didn't materialize for the mid trim level models and we didn't want a Superbab with suicide doors. The majority of dealer stock seemed to be Supercrews with the 5 1/2' bed and I wanted a 6' bed. None had trailer tow mirrors.

The Ram 1500 Ecodiesel seemed promising but they have less payload than my Tundra.

So I started looking at 3/4T trucks. I didn't feel a 3/4T truck with a gas engine would be the best purchase since the 3/4T chassis is 1000-1500 lbs heavier. I wasn't keen on diesel at first but decided the power, fuel economy and the exhaust braking features were worth taking a chance on.

Thr Ford F250 was taken off the list due to the 26g fuel tank. I didn't want a long bed. Also we didn't like the interior.

The GM Duramax Cew Cac was test driven but the LT cloth seats didn't pass the wife's butt test. There were a few minor items I didn't like; the radio didn't sound good, the steering felt a little heavy and I felt I had to step on the acellerator too much just to get going.

Next we drove the Ram 2500 Big Horn and it drove more like a 1/2T to us. The steering felt lighter and the Ram was a more responsive to starting from a stop and the cloth seats passed the wife's butt test. While not quite as quiet at idle as the Duramax it was quiet at cruising speeds. We were also able to choose from more colors and decided on silver. We liked the audio system in the Ram better and the UConnect 8.4A system can be upgraded via software to include navigation at a later time. The payload of our Ram is 2089lbs. I was hoping a little more but we feel it's sufficient for our needs.

Since I will be still working for the next 3 years we decided to buy now and knock off 3 years of payments then pay the balance off upon retirement. We felt it was the best time to buy with low interest rates too.

Maybe one of these days I can take another video of the Ram towing tup the Ike Gauntlet.

Kelvin
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Old 08-23-2015, 11:54 PM   #4
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We bought a 2014 4x4 Tundra last year when we decided we wanted a V-8 engine for Bambi the Second-- nice crew cab: probably the most comfortable vehicle we've ever owned. It comes with a rear-view camera. We have a canopy/topper on the back, because we tend to travel with a lot of camping gear, like canoe paddles, life jackets, generator, gas can, folding side tables, picnic cooler, jerry cans for water, emergency portable waste water tank (biffy box,) and so on.

Living in a mountainous area, and frequently visiting other mountainous areas, we're happy with our towing capacity over the passes.
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Old 08-24-2015, 07:33 AM   #5
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I mounted my brake control in the dash under the climate control.Click image for larger version

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Old 08-24-2015, 07:38 AM   #6
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With all that camping gear I'm curious how close you are to your payload capacity. The Toyota seems to be a good truck.
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Old 08-24-2015, 02:30 PM   #7
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I enjoyed that.
Beautiful scenery.
Maybe one day I will tow my Airstream up the Ike Gauntlet with my Tundra.
How about that first generation Tundra with a dent in the bed that passed you?
What's up with Ford Fusion guy going less than 60 in the middle lane?
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Old 08-24-2015, 02:50 PM   #8
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13.4mpg you claim to average was probably not going up the Ike.
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Old 08-24-2015, 04:16 PM   #9
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No, it was the leg from Frisco, CO to Burlington, CO, There is a long downhill from the Ike tunnel to Denver. Hit the brakes more than the accelerator pedal. Once in Denver it were no traffic jams and east was flat.

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Old 08-24-2015, 04:31 PM   #10
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We have a 2015 Sequoia...tow package...same engine as the Tundra I believe. We towed our FC 27 with it for 8300 miles last spring....out to Utah and back through Colorado. Overall trip got about 11mpg, but used the S setting to go up and down. It did a great job....and the SUV has lots of inside room for dogs and stuff.
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Old 08-24-2015, 10:02 PM   #11
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How timely, we will be going that way in a month and i wondered about that grade and how my Sequoia would handle it. Given we have an equivalent Engine/Drivetrain combo and same size trailer, I have a good idea of what to expect.

Why is it you always keep your gear in 5th rather than Drive (and 6th) and let the Tow Haul handle the shifting? I understand on the grades but why also on the flats? I've seen this discussed on the Tundra forums but have not gotten a good understanding of the rationale.


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Old 08-24-2015, 11:19 PM   #12
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I found the transmission would shift down from 6 to 5 when towing when ever a slight hill was encountered. I discovered the mileage wasn't affected in 5 because you aren't pressing down on the accelerator as much in 5. I use 6 on flat roads unless there is a stiff breeze. If you monitor the instantaneous mileage every time you depress your accelerator, even a little bit, the mileage goes down. I found in 6 I was pressing the acellerator down more in 6 than 5 to maintain my speed. I did have the Tundra in tow haul mode any time I was towing.

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Old 08-24-2015, 11:26 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1965 mustang View Post
I mounted my brake control in the dash under the climate control.Attachment 246207


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That looks to be an excellent location. Did you have to remove that area to mount the controller? Did you have to lengthen the harness that connects the controller to the plug under the dash by the driver's door?

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Old 08-24-2015, 11:33 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1965 mustang View Post
I mounted my brake control in the dash under the climate control.Attachment 246207


Sent from my iPhone using Airstream Forums
That looks to be an excellent location. Did you have to remove that area to mount the controller? Did you have to lengthen the harness that connects the controller to the plug under the dash by the driver's door?

Kelvin
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