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Old 01-20-2003, 08:33 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jan 2003
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I have really been helped by everyones comments on tow vehicles but now would like to ask if anyone is towing with a 1500 2wd standard 5.3 liter with a 3.73 gear ratio. Let me know also do you need a special kind of hitch when pulling an airstream. Thanks so much. WE are really novices.

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Old 01-20-2003, 08:46 AM   #2
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2014 Interstate Ext. Coach
Hays County , Texas
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 6,037
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You don't say what vintage and what size Airstream you want to tow. It makes a huge difference. Your Suburban is probably good for up to about 22' of trailer in most terrain. The standard transmission is a drawback. Automatics usually will tow more because of the torque multiplication. Towing is hard on clutches.

For Airstream sizes and weights 22' and less, you will want an equalizing hitch with either a 2" or 2 5/16" ball depending on the Airstream size and vintage. Any of the common equalizing hitches (DrawTite, Reese, etc.) are accceptable. You will probably need an anti-sway device.

John W. Irwin
2014.5 Touring Coach, "Sabre-Dog IV"
WBCCI #9632
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Old 01-20-2003, 09:12 AM   #3
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2001 30' Excella
Bedford , New Hampshire
Join Date: May 2002
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We are towing a 31 AS with a Yukon XL 1500 2wd with 3.73 rear end. We also use the Hensley hitch. I have found the rig very adequate in the east and south. However, on several occasions last summer to and from Arizona, I would have liked a little more horse power or pulling power in a lower rear end. Several of the passes we made (up to 11,0000 feet) ended in a 25mph crawl in first gear. We made sure we were in first coming down.

Another time I would have liked a 4.10 was going west out of Texas into New Mexico. I40 is a constant upgrade and with a strong head wind, the unit would only go 55 with the rest of the traffic at 75. That was one hard hot day. Most of the time we time we tow with little effort between 60 and 65. In Ga and Fl on I95 we have a hard time keeping it under 70.

With the Hensley, we have no problem controlling the rig. There is absolutely no wag or hint of movement in the tow vehicle. That hitch is worth every dime.

Good luck
-Life is a journey, not a destination.
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