Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 04-21-2009, 05:26 PM   #15
Rivet Master
 
RangerJay's Avatar
 
2002 19' Bambi
Northwestern Ontario , - on the backside of the map and just above the big green spot
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 818
Images: 44
I have written about our tow vehicle a few times over the years - Nissan Pathfinders aren't known as shining stars in the tow vehicle department. Regardless I started out our Pathfinder towing adventures with phrases like “Great!” - eventually gravitating to “OK” - 6 towing seasons into it and well over 50,000 towing kilometres later that is where it still stands today - OK.

What have I learned? - to start off with:

· I have been unimpressed with those who “have it all” and lord it over the rest of us with their sanctimonious judgments on the inadequacies of set-ups that don’t meet the standard of an ego that is as big as all outdoors (whew - I sweated my brain cells coming up with that)

· I have been just as unimpressed with those who “risk it all” and ridicule those who go to considerable length and expense to make and keep their rigs roadworthy and safe.

I guess I am comfortably nested in the middle - but often abused by both sides.

Yes - we have a marginal tow vehicle - centre of gravity is too high, wheelbase is too short, weight of the TV is little more than the weight of the trailer, power isn’t going to win any uphill races anywhere.

But;

I tow within the vehicle specs, the hitch is a Hensley, the brake controller a Tekonsha P3, the tires are LT and sized to eliminate the “balloon” sidewalls, the safety aspects of both truck and trailer are exceptionally well maintained, and driving habits are conservative.

The name of the game in the beginning (at least for me) was to get as much trailer as I could for the truck we owned. My big issue was lack of towing knowledge and experience - though I wouldn’t have admitted that at the time - heck - we’d towed the utility trailer, the pop-up and the boat trailer since the beginning of time - what else was there to know?

Today that game hasn’t really changed a lot - the trailer is around for the long haul (we hope) - the next truck isn’t going to be a heck of a lot bigger than the one we have (well - maybe a little) - but we’ll still be a one vehicle family that asks far too much of that vehicle (formal dinners to dump hauls). What has really changed is my understanding of the towing dynamics between the truck and the trailer - and the importance of paying attention to those dynamics.

The bottom line is: know your vehicle - maximize on its strengths, mitigate its weaknesses and don’t exceed whatever limitations remain.

And: for the record - I want to thank Can Am RV for their frank and professional advice on making our own rig comfortable and safer to tow.


Jay
__________________

__________________
Bambi - 2002 (The Toaster)
Pathfinder - 2009 (The Buggy)

"I'm not young enough to know everything ....."
(Oscar Wilde)
RangerJay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-2009, 05:30 PM   #16
CLOUDSPLITTER "Tahawas"
 
ROBERT CROSS's Avatar

 
2003 25' Classic
Zanadude Nebula , WNY
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 11,153
Images: 1
Thumbs up

Quote:
Originally Posted by RangerJay View Post
I have written about our tow vehicle a few times over the years - Nissan Pathfinders aren't known as shining stars in the tow vehicle department. Regardless I started out our Pathfinder towing adventures with phrases like “Great!” - eventually gravitating to “OK” - 6 towing seasons into it and well over 50,000 towing kilometres later that is where it still stands today - OK.

What have I learned? - to start off with:

· I have been unimpressed with those who “have it all” and lord it over the rest of us with their sanctimonious judgments on the inadequacies of set-ups that don’t meet the standard of an ego that is as big as all outdoors (whew - I sweated my brain cells coming up with that)

· I have been just as unimpressed with those who “risk it all” and ridicule those who go to considerable length and expense to make and keep their rigs roadworthy and safe.

I guess I am comfortably nested in the middle - but often abused by both sides.

Yes - we have a marginal tow vehicle - centre of gravity is too high, wheelbase is too short, weight of the TV is little more than the weight of the trailer, power isn’t going to win any uphill races anywhere.

But;

I tow within the vehicle specs, the hitch is a Hensley, the brake controller a Tekonsha P3, the tires are LT and sized to eliminate the “balloon” sidewalls, the safety aspects of both truck and trailer are exceptionally well maintained, and driving habits are conservative.

The name of the game in the beginning (at least for me) was to get as much trailer as I could for the truck we owned. My big issue was lack of towing knowledge and experience - though I wouldn’t have admitted that at the time - heck - we’d towed the utility trailer, the pop-up and the boat trailer since the beginning of time - what else was there to know?

Today that game hasn’t really changed a lot - the trailer is around for the long haul (we hope) - the next truck isn’t going to be a heck of a lot bigger than the one we have (well - maybe a little) - but we’ll still be a one vehicle family that asks far too much of that vehicle (formal dinners to dump hauls). What has really changed is my understanding of the towing dynamics between the truck and the trailer - and the importance of paying attention to those dynamics.

The bottom line is: know your vehicle - maximize on its strengths, mitigate its weaknesses and don’t exceed whatever limitations remain.

And: for the record - I want to thank Can Am RV for their frank and professional advice on making our own rig comfortable and safer to tow.


Jay

Sounds good to us...
__________________

__________________
PFC.....

“After all these years the reason I continue to love Thanksgiving.....I still sit at the kids table.”
RLC

Sandra wanted to go to Cleveland on vacation,
but I’m the Husband, so we went to Cleveland.
RLC
ROBERT CROSS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-2009, 08:30 PM   #17
4 Rivet Member
 
63Silver's Avatar
 
1963 28' Ambassador
Smiths Grove , Kentucky
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 406
Images: 43
I bought an F150 4.6 liter crew cab a few years ago never expecting to actually own an Airstream. I would have expected this small V8 could handle our 1963 Ambassador, which we NEVER over load. While I like the truck and will continue to be a Ford man, the 4.6 is just not powerful enough especially on the hills. Getting down to 40 miles an hour on the Interstate is freightening, the other guys are already going WAY to fast. I believe the 5.4 liter would be enough but if I am going to up grade I think I'll just get a diesel. Who knows in a few years the wife may let me buy a bigger trailer.

63silver
__________________
63Silver is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-2009, 08:49 PM   #18
Rivet Master
 
Road Ruler's Avatar
 
Currently Looking...
St. Catharines , South Western Ontario
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 2,364
Images: 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by 63Silver View Post
While I like the truck and will continue to be a Ford man, the 4.6 is just not powerful enough especially on the hills.
The new F150 is a whole different story....

__________________
Airstreams..... The best towing trailers on the planet!
Road Ruler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-2009, 09:43 PM   #19
4 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
holland , Michigan
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 436
Images: 1
I am convinced, and with more experience than most on this forum towing a 28 nationwide in all conditions the following: Our 08 f150 will do the job for anything airstream makes. The popular notion on this forum of a 3/4 ton diesel IS good for chiropractors to adjust for whiplash from railroad tracks and potholes. It also is in the best interest for rv repair dealers to fix your appliances and loose rivets. Otherwise, get a properly set up half ton, gasser, and simplify your life big time. Trust me on this, bigger is not better when towing an airstream, in fact, it is worse.
__________________
safari 28 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-2009, 09:43 PM   #20
Rivet Master
 
Gene's Avatar
 
2008 25' Safari FB SE
Grand Junction , Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 10,840
Didn't we learn that Canadians tow with lighter vehicles on another thread? Perhaps because the magnetic north pole is in Canada, it pulls them along and they don't need big engines? Or is it because it's downhill to the Arctic Ocean? Just look at a globe of the planet and you can see that driving north is all downhill. When we're in Canada next month I'm going to see if we can coast north.

Gene
__________________
Gene is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-2009, 10:12 PM   #21
Site Team
 
Aage's Avatar
 
1974 31' Sovereign
Ottawa , ON
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 11,204
Images: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene View Post
When we're in Canada next month I'm going to see if we can coast north.

Gene
Gene, if you'e going to New Brunswick, be sure to go and visit the Magnetic Hill. You will be amazed!

Although, not sure if it works on and AS, perhaps too much aluminum!
__________________
“Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.”
...John Wayne...........................
Aage is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-2009, 10:13 PM   #22
Rivet Master
 
Mexray's Avatar
 
1978 28' Ambassador
Morada , California
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,583
I don't like the 'tail' wagging the 'dog'...hence our Ford Excursion 4x4 with the 6.8 ltr V-10 to haul our 28 ft AS around - can you spell STABLE on the road...

I weighed the whole rig a few months ago with full fuel (42 gals!) and 1/2 fresh water tank...

Excursion - 8,480 lbs
Airstream - 5,560 lbs

Total.........14,040 lbs

Towing experience - Priceless...!

Passing Semi's don't even give us a 'wiggle'....
__________________
Ray & Pat; Morada, CA
Mexray is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2009, 05:02 AM   #23
CLOUDSPLITTER "Tahawas"
 
ROBERT CROSS's Avatar

 
2003 25' Classic
Zanadude Nebula , WNY
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 11,153
Images: 1
Wink Stragedy

Come on guy's fess-up, if you WANT a new TV, 'yer gonn'a be very creative in your reasoning, It's all about stragedy and guy think.
__________________
PFC.....

“After all these years the reason I continue to love Thanksgiving.....I still sit at the kids table.”
RLC

Sandra wanted to go to Cleveland on vacation,
but I’m the Husband, so we went to Cleveland.
RLC
ROBERT CROSS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2009, 05:34 AM   #24
Rivet Master
 
Wayne&Sam's Avatar
 
2014 25' Flying Cloud
Cuddebackville , New York
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 3,099
Images: 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene View Post
Perhaps because the magnetic north pole is in Canada, it pulls them along and they don't need big engines?
Gene
Sorry Gene, That doesn't work with aluminum!
__________________
Wayne&Sam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2009, 06:49 AM   #25
Site Team
 
Aage's Avatar
 
1974 31' Sovereign
Ottawa , ON
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 11,204
Images: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mexray View Post
Passing Semi's don't even give us a 'wiggle'....
And, as has been noted in several other threads, it's always interesting to remember that those very semi rigs are made up of tractors pulling one (or two) 40' trailers, usually weighing several times what the tractor weighs.

Jeepers! How -do- they do it?
__________________
“Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.”
...John Wayne...........................
Aage is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2009, 07:05 AM   #26
Rivet Master
 
Lothlorian's Avatar
 
1973 27' Overlander
Loganville , Georgia
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,733
Whether I am pulling my airstream (73 Overlander) or not I usually never go over 65 on the interstate. With my airstream I usually stay at 55. I use the 4.6L 2006 Dodge Ram and it pulls nicely. I stay far behind people in front of me and I let other people pass. I stay within the tow package specs and only take what I need to camp ( around 500 Lbs). The only time my truck feels stressed is when I have to go through the Tennesse Mountains north of Chattanooga. I have to give it some acceleration and top end is 45 miles an hour. That is the only time is when the truck is climbing. It is about a 30 minute climb.

That climb concerned me and I had a service manager at Dodge look at my truck and the specs and he told me not to worry. He claims the Dodge 4.6L engine is a tough engine and the transmission can handle it. This service manager was working at a chrysler dealer where I did not buy my truck.

The new 5.7 2009 Dodge trucks are nice and WOW!! the prices are awesome.

Brian
__________________
Brian & Adrienne
Lothlorian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2009, 05:49 PM   #27
Rivet Master
 
mustang's Avatar
 
1986 31' Sovereign
Kent , Ohio
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 803
1987 Crown Vic, towing a 27 foot overlander. A family of 6. Dog. hahaha

I went all over with that setup. Never a problem. 302, AOD, 3:08 gears.

Engine/Tranny made it over 365000 miles Odometer broke, sold it a year later. I see it every once in a while
__________________
mustang is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2009, 06:25 PM   #28
3 Rivet Member
 
tinsltootsie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 126
Images: 29
Thumbs up hmmmmmm

Our tow vehicle is nothing to remark about, but my husband, the driver,(important) feels it is safer. Since he is a service station owner/operator/mechanic/trailer insp person, I listen. I loved those short bed pickups with extended cabs. They look pretty long!! Lots of people room!! And why a heavy duty 3500??? Many smaller models have enough power!! His reasoning is the stopping power in those "hairy" situations. So far, we've never had to use it, and we even avoid those worse hills, and curves when possible. And believe me, there are many. After all! We live in PA!!! So, those who get by with a smaller vehicle, good luck, and I'd advise to stay out of PA. We're only the Appies, but around here, those hills are tough on a TV with trailer!

BTW, ours is a 1997 Dodge Ram 4X4 3500 Needs some bodywork, and polish, but it does its tow job!


Post Icons
__________________

__________________
It's the rivets!!!!!
tinsltootsie is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
New Tow Vehicle romap Tow Vehicles 28 10-25-2008 12:00 PM
Too Much Tow Vehicle!!! DEITZ645 Tow Vehicles 2 06-14-2008 11:34 AM
new tow vehicle frederic.c01 Tow Vehicles 2 06-18-2006 01:56 AM
which tow vehicle? wayne.yl Tow Vehicles 4 01-17-2006 01:06 AM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:27 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.