Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 12-19-2004, 12:16 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 45
Tow Rating 1985 Suburban

I'm trying to find a website for tow ratings on old Suburbans. Specifically a 1985 C2500 2WD 454. Want to run the numbers to see if it would handle a 2004 30" Classic. Dry weight 7300# GTWR 8700#. What do you think?
__________________

__________________
Daryl

"If the women don’t find you handsome, they better find you handy.” Red Green.
TheLuvShack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-19-2004, 02:57 PM   #2
Rivet Master
 
Condoluminum's Avatar
 
1988 25' Excella
Sunnyvale , California
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,858
Images: 13
Send a message via AIM to Condoluminum
It depends...

Tow Rating even then depended on whether built with tow package and hig ratio rear differential, but it's safe to assume minimum was 10,500# (about same as current 3/4 ton with 350 Engine..) and up to 12,000 for tow-pkg equipped models. Assumes equalizing hitch, etc etc, but using ratio of 75 to 80% of rated capacity for gross trailer weight, sounds like your combo could work.. A number of members pull 34's with 3/4 ton Suburbans and big engine combo, whether large diesel or 454's...

John McG
__________________

__________________
Condoluminum

In Theory, there's no difference between Theory and Practice, but in Practice, there is usually a difference...
Condoluminum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-19-2004, 05:36 PM   #3
Aluminut
 
Silvertwinkie's Avatar
 
2004 25' Safari
. , Illinois
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 10,334
We had one of these exact beasts and it towed 5500 lbs like it wasn't even there with 6-7 people hauled in the burb at the same time. We even towed that load through mountains and at good grade. Never did that truck run out of power (gas maybe, power, never) I think an '85 could easily handle a 30' Classic tipping 9k without any problems. The 1985 454 was the last year before major emission control devices such as cata converters, etc were installed. We special ordered our 1985 Burb and waited an extra 3 months while GM and the EPA haggled over the 454s emissions.

The computer was known to have few issues (check engin light would come on freq, not serious though), but other than that, the engine and trans were real tough. The body here in the rust belt, even with rustproofing after 7 years, really went south fast. Also brakes....our 1985 3/4 ton 454 powered burb really had bad brakes. Don't get me wrong, on dry ground, it was fine. When the road got wet however, any emerg braking would lock all four tires very easily and loss of control of the truck as it would always go in a straight line. The truck desperately needed ABS. I believe it got it a few years later....but by then, emissions control was all over the truck and performance was slightly diminished.

Based on our exp with our 1985, we decided to go with a 2004 and I gotta say, the 3/4 ton Burb doesn't disappoint when it comes to towing...then or now. It's a solid platform!
__________________
Computers manufactured by companies such as IBM, Compaq and millions of others are by far the most popular with about 70 million machines in use worldwide. Macintosh fans note that cockroaches are far more numerous than humans and that numbers alone do not denote a higher life form. -NY Times 11/91
Silvertwinkie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-19-2004, 11:42 PM   #4
2 Rivet Member
 
Exeter , Rhode Island
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLuvShack
I'm trying to find a website for tow ratings on old Suburbans. Specifically a 1985 C2500 2WD 454. Want to run the numbers to see if it would handle a 2004 30" Classic. Dry weight 7300# GTWR 8700#. What do you think?
I tow a 1989 32' Excella with a 1986 C20 454 Chevy Suburban. No problems.

Ben
__________________
Rob30044 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2004, 07:56 PM   #5
Rivet Master
 
59toaster's Avatar
 
1959 22' Caravanner
Atlanta , Georgia
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,197
Images: 22
The question I have is what gear ratio rear axle?

I have a 88 454 3/4 ton with 3.73 rear end. 5500 lb is no problem for it. set the cruise at 65 and it will go all day long. I have pulled 7k with it and its near its limit of what it feels ok with the 3.73. Now the truck was not running great when I did that so it might not be as bad now (bad plug wires). 4.10 gear and I would say no problem with the weight but the speed is another story.

I'm a gadget freak and I have temp gage on coolant, transmission fluid AND engine oil. the 454 does not like running 3000+RPM for extended time. I find that I am at the limit of its cooling capacity if I try to run the A/C and pull any sort of weight faster then 65mph. Once I get going faster then that I see my engine oil temp come up to around 300 degrees and thin way out. Tranny starts running hotter then 220 (and I have not only the factory in radiator cooler but a 19,000 aux cooler) and the engine starts running about 220 as well. At 65 It will maintain about 250 on the oil 190 on tranny and 200 on the coolant.

It simply cant get rid of the heat fast enough. I removed all the splash shields out of the fenders to get some air flow. The problem is that motor sits tight to the radiator and it just cant get the heat out. To make the problem worse I have an AUX transmission cooler and oil cooler in front of the radiators. I will probably relocate my AUX tranny cooler and my AUX oil cooler (factory) out of in front of the radiators and A/C condenser and duct the air to them with fans this year. Probably also go to electric cooling fans so I can get the shroud out of the way to lessen the restriction of air flow. The shod is only 4 inches off the front of the engine.

Other then the that I love my Suburban. Its a tank! It loves long stretches of road and 5 adults (I don't have third row) can sit in it quite comfortably. We have made a couple long hauls in it and nobody has complained about lack of room or being able to move around enough to handle extended runs EVEN with my youngest's car seat sitting middle of the back seat.

__________________
1959 22' Caravanner
1988 R20 454 Suburban.
Atlanta, GA
59toaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2004, 08:23 PM   #6
Aluminut
 
Silvertwinkie's Avatar
 
2004 25' Safari
. , Illinois
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 10,334
Toaster, that pic has the familiar 350 exhaust on it. Please don't tell me by 1988 they took the factory duals of the 454!
__________________
Computers manufactured by companies such as IBM, Compaq and millions of others are by far the most popular with about 70 million machines in use worldwide. Macintosh fans note that cockroaches are far more numerous than humans and that numbers alone do not denote a higher life form. -NY Times 11/91
Silvertwinkie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2004, 11:40 PM   #7
Rivet Master
 
59toaster's Avatar
 
1959 22' Caravanner
Atlanta , Georgia
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,197
Images: 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Silvertwinkie
Toaster, that pic has the familiar 350 exhaust on it. Please don't tell me by 1988 they took the factory duals of the 454!
Its single BUT its 2.25 down pipes to the Y and 3 inch all the way to the Y at the tail pipes. Its masive compaired to the 350.

I wouldn't want true duals without a H or X pipe set up. With the Odd fire cylinder GM does, what I have probably flows better then the true duals they had before it. The muffler is hurting a little. Looking at headers and proably a new 2.5 inch X set up guy I know off another forum sells.
http://www.73-87chevytrucks.com/merc...ode=73-87UHood
__________________
1959 22' Caravanner
1988 R20 454 Suburban.
Atlanta, GA
59toaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2004, 09:40 AM   #8
2 Rivet Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 45
Toaster,

That's a great looking '85! As you can see by my signature, I'm currently looking. I have an leased '04 Mountaineer that won't tow much and was looking at a '04 Safari Classic 30'. I have a friend that has this '85 Suburban with 104K on it and thought I might buy it and use it until the lease expires on the Mountaineer. '85 has 410 rear end. I backed off the '04 Safari Classic because it has a salvage or rebuilt title and I couldn't get financing because of the title. Thought about a home equity loan but this is my first TT and really don't know what I'm getting into with a salvage title. Here's the story on the 30' classic. Current owner tells me that he purchased it in Maryland at a salvage auction. Apparrently it was stolen and the insurance company paid off and then the AS was recovered. Current owner tells me it's spotless and wants $22,000 for it. It's located in Indiana if it's still available.
__________________
Daryl

"If the women don’t find you handsome, they better find you handy.” Red Green.
TheLuvShack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2004, 10:02 AM   #9
Just a member
 
thenewkid64's Avatar
 
1978 28' Argosy 28
Tampa Bay , Florida
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 4,539
Images: 21
Send a message via AIM to thenewkid64 Send a message via Yahoo to thenewkid64 Send a message via Skype™ to thenewkid64
Daryl,

That salvage unit may have belonged to a forum member. We had a member get theirs stolen, they replaced it and then the Police found it. Run a search on stolen ans safari and the threads may come up.

One thing to note is that the first one you buy is normally not the one you end up in for the long haul. Many a story abounds about upgrade-itis.

If you have a way to save some money on the initial purchase I would suggest you do so. Let someone else take the deprecation. If you do go new, be sure it is the "right one" before signing those papers. You don't want to take the hit in 18 months because you found something better, IMHO.
__________________
Brett G
WBCCI #5501 AIR # 49
-------------------------
1978 Argosy 28 foot Motorhome

Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something. -- Plato


thenewkid64 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2004, 10:39 AM   #10
Rivet Master
 
59toaster's Avatar
 
1959 22' Caravanner
Atlanta , Georgia
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,197
Images: 22
The Sub is a 88 so second year with Fuel Injection. Still has the TH400 though so other the the FI it would be identical to a 85. 86 is a Odd year and I would not recommend buying one. The 350 motor was a one year only deal then they went FI for the 350 powered ones. I think the 454 was the same as 85 so it would probably be ok.

For most of the use we get out of the truck and the weight of the Caravanner we have the 3.73 is great gear for us BUT I intend to pull a truck on a trailer from time to time and might want to swap to a 4.10 if that becomes more regular. I may still get a Gear vendors Overdrive for it either way. The 454 really likes lower RPM's for steady cruise. Mine rates its peak Torque at 385 lbft at 1600 RPM and holds it pretty flat till about 2700 RPM. Its sweet spot is about 2200 RPM for best economy when running empty.

I bought the truck off another Forum member, Ira Iberg, almost 2 years ago. He took wonderful care of it and I was very fortunate that he was ready to sell when I was ready to buy. It truly was the best in town that I could find.

Its been pulling Airstreams most of its life. The PO had a Safari and then a Excella he pulled with it. When it wasn't pulling it was tucked in a car port. Its in great shape and just rolled 84,000. Had 72k when I bought it. Only had some minor problems when I bought it. One was just age was catching up and had to replace all the heater hoses it had some bad vacuum lines (those plastic lines they were using back then become very brittle and crack so watch that on the 85),bad gasket on the TBI base and the rims had all warped from brake heat. I replaced the rims with the mags you see in the picture. Now it runs down the road pretty smooth for a 3/4 ton. Actually rides really nice with 5 people and luggage.

I have been setting it up as the ultimate tow vehicle. We want to get a Honda 2000eu generator and we want to bring our bikes so I put that roof rack on it. It has bike racks in it and it will easily handle the generator and a 5 gallon gas can (don't want anything with fuel in either the truck or the camper). Put the halo lights up so we can light dark campsites from any side for late night set up.

The 4 headlight systems are just junk. Cant find decent bulbs for them at all. The H4 selection is non existent for that style. I did some horse trading for the AUX lights. The big ones are Hella Ralley 1000 Euro beams. They are the lights you would see on Desert race vehicles and Rally race cars. They will honestly throw a beam nearly 3/4 of a mile as rated. They are tied into the high beams and automatically come on. The amount of light they put out is astounding!

The lower lights I am not happy with. They will probably be removed. They are wired to be on with low beam and go off with the high beams. They are suppose to be driving lights but the beam is unfocused and you can not have them on for normal driving like you are suppose to. They blind oncoming drivers. Probably replace them with some Fogs and use them on the rear of my other truck for utility lights.

Some other doo dads: We are setting up a Laptop that will be tied into our Garmin GPS for Navigation duties. It will also be tied into the Trucks computer so I can real time monitor the motor. Then also play DVD's to keep the kids entertained. I'll be hooking it up to a Cingular Data set up for internet access while on the road.

Thats awful on the title issue. You will find one though. Check south. FL is the place to buy used Airstreams. People will often travel for a few years right after retiring and then buy a house there and sell the campers. Buy the 85 plan a couple weeks n Orlando to shop and go to Disney and drag one home.

Here is a site you might find interesting. One of my internet friends maintains this. He collects sales brochures for GM trucks and has been kind enough to make them available on-line. Whats really funny is how often GM used Airstreams in Suburban ads.

http://brochures.slosh.com/
See if he has remote linking allowed.

OK, enough of my hijack of your thread.
__________________

__________________
1959 22' Caravanner
1988 R20 454 Suburban.
Atlanta, GA
59toaster 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
Which is best tow vehicle Van or Sedan? Mr Jody Hudson Tow Vehicles 10 10-06-2016 10:14 PM
What's your tow vehicle's rating? John Community Polls 112 01-12-2009 12:13 PM
Chevy Express vs Suburban alan Tow Vehicles 8 07-27-2003 04:38 PM
1975 Cadillac Eldorado as Tow Vehicle overlander64 Tow Vehicles 9 11-04-2002 08:04 AM
gross combined vehicle rating for 1985 - 325 rdm Mechanics Corner - Engines, Transmission & More... 1 10-16-2002 08:01 AM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:05 PM.


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.