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Old 12-08-2004, 09:47 PM   #15
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Toll Vehicle overheating

I feel that if your tow vehical tranny or engine overheats pulling a small 23 ft. Airstream, even if uphill, it is not up to the job. It is not simply tongue weight, but tranny and other gear boxes, brakes, springs, axles, tire flexability and last but not least, power, that makes a proper tow vehicle. IMHO, any Airstream other than a Bambi should be towed with a 3/4 ton vehicle..............minimum! Further, towing trailers 30 feet or longer, safety and handling are GREATLY inhanced with a one-ton vehicle.


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Old 12-08-2004, 09:58 PM   #16
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Hensley Hitch

As an afterthought, I don't understand why a person would be willing to pay big bucks for a Hensley Hitch in order to obtain "safety and peace of mind" would be willing to 'skimp' on their choice of tow vehicles.


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Old 12-08-2004, 10:05 PM   #17
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While it is useless to get into agruments with the weight police, an Armada or a Titan is hardly skimping. With over 20 years experience towing and nearly 4 of those with a 27 foot Safari, I can say, without any doubt, that the Armada will handle a 7000 to 7500 lb trailer rather easily.

There is a lot about the Armada and the Titan on the trailerlife website.

Go to On the pull down menu select tow vehicles and look for the Armada and Titan threads. There are a lot of recent posts. For those of you who do not access the trailer life website, it is comprehensive and , quite frankly, overwhelms this Airstream site. It has a lot of good stuff that applies to Airstream towers as well as those who tow SOBs.
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Old 12-09-2004, 09:16 AM   #18
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Way to break it in....

Thanks for the Break in reminder. I'd read through Nissan's information previously, and was going to re-read the break in.

Fortunately, or unfortunately, I have an opportunity to get some of the towing break in done pre-trip. Our Safari is part of the 04' recall. I have to head to Berkley MA next Tuesday to address the recall and several small warranty items. The round trip for us is about 300 miles. Hope the folks on Route 495 don't get too mad at me for doing the 50 mph!

Looking forward to when the Nashua NH dealership's service department is up and running. It would make a much shorter trip!

Originally Posted by 71_safari
Make sure you follow the break-in procedure for towing!!!

One of the recent truck publications, it may have been Truck Trend, burned up the rear end gears in the test Titan because they didn't follow Nissan's recommended break-in procedure, which they fully admitted. They were towing a Jeep to Moab and had to have new gears installed somewhere in Utah. Apparently the Titan rear end gears, which are a Dana 44, need to be "tempered" by towing at 50mph or less for the first 500 miles of towing, and allowed to cool properly, whereupon they are good to go. This correlates with anecdotal info off of the forum, which also had some rear-end incidents described.

Other than that one concern, the Titan has been highly rated. If I can find the copy I will post it.
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Old 12-09-2004, 11:56 AM   #19
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break-in clarification

The truck does not just need 500 miles on it BEFORE towing. It has to have a special break-in for the rear gears WHILE TOWING UNDER LOAD. According to the article in Four Wheeler magazine (Jan 05) the gears have to be "tempered" by towing at 50 mph, for the first 500 miles of TOWING. In other words, they need to see a load on them to break-in properly. What they apparently did with their long-term test truck was break it in normally, then later towed with it at normal highway speeds, and this is apparently what caused the problem.
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Old 12-09-2004, 02:20 PM   #20
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In your case Larry, I think you'd be fine. I wouldn't take that 9k limit as law either as some have suggested. My gut tells me based on the weaker rear axle that I wouldn't push much more than 6000lbs (though I know some folks will clearly do it and have done it-- but there are also folks that tow 34' Classics with Dodge Intrepids too!).

As for break in periods. Though some manufacs don't mention it, I agree that a proper break in period for anything is good practice, followed by fluid changes to get most of the metal shavings that the magnets didn't grab out of the mix.
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Old 12-09-2004, 10:01 PM   #21
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Sorry Big Dee -- gotta say this. I've pitched in often enough that I'm sure gadgetat has seen the reminders -- It's not about tow capacity (9000# -- Wow!). The tow vehicle GVWR of the Titan is modest. Heck, GVWR doesn't become limitless until you go up to 1-ton. You've got to calculate what you're putting in the truck and then add the tow weight. Sorry to say a Hensley doesn't leave much leeway for gas. I don't believe many folks with any tow vehicle want to consistently tow above GVWR.

That being said, my Titan is a very comfortable strong towing machine. It doesn't feel like it would have any problem towing right up to the 9000# limits. I have some qualms and practical experience about the drive train (smaller diameter rear end + some surprise under what conditions the tranny temp gauge starts to redline). I still feel good about the Titan for an older (read: lighter) trailer. Gadgetat, the southeast US is mighty far from big mountains but stay the heck off back roads in West Virginny...



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