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Old 02-12-2019, 07:53 PM   #1
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Tow Vehicle and Off-Roader Combination

There's been a renewed interest in back country exploring in the last decade. The overlanding and off-roading interests have really been taking off.

Classically, a good tow vehicle and good off-roader have required different types of vehicles as they are somewhat diametric qualities. It's the difference between a vehicle who's suspension has good load bearing qualities (stiff), versus an off-roader that has good articulation (soft).

Technology has enabled some of these qualities to be had in a single vehicle.

Which enables interests to be combined: Airstreaming and technical off-roading at destinations.

This thread is to highlight those setups that enable this type of travel and interests. Please share your setup, preferably with pics and media of your interesting journeys.

Just for clarification, what this is NOT is bone stock standard pickups with 4x4. While part time 4WD is great for getting out of sticky low traction situations (i.e. wet grass, some mud on fire roads), technical off-roading it is not. The type that requires off-road oriented tires, suspension, and articulation performance. If you have a Raptor, TRD Pro, Rebel, etc, and/or you've modified your truck or SUV, then please share!
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Old 02-12-2019, 08:09 PM   #2
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I'll go first.

I've been an avid off-roader. My original interest pre-airstream was to enable reaching destinations that are off the beaten path for photography! As it progressed, I was looking for an RV to enable boondocking and to reach even more interesting destinations.

My vehicle of choice. Land Cruisers. Full size 8 person SUV's, with capacity to tow larger airstreams, yet with real off-road capability.

In Lexus guise.

Previously an '06 LX 470 (100-series), and now an '09 LX 570 (200-series) to tow a heavier and larger 27FB. Both have been serious off-road chops to tackle "difficult" rated jeep trails. Yet make very competent tow vehicles. Understated in mainstream understanding of their competencies. Yet legendary in off-road and overlanding circles for their capability and durability

I have 33" AT tires on mine which is just about the only relavent modification. Stock, these vehicles have AHC (active height control) hydraulic suspensions which enable fully computer controlled dampening, height, and spring rate control. Yet reliable and durable (unlike many air suspension).

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On a recent trip towing to the desert and going on a side excursion with some more seriously modified off-roaders. The first is a x-terra with suspension on 32s. 3rd is a Nissan Titan, lots of suspension and lift work, with huge 35s. Last is a Raptor with 37s, and everything top shelf thrown at it.



My last LX470 paired with a 23D
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Boondocking option package:
'07 27FB Ocean Breeze "See Turtle", 3" lift
'09 Lexus LX570, on 33's
Tongue Mount Honda eu2200i - Rear Hitch - Underbelly Storage - Blizzard NXT w/ EasyStart - 3" Lift - 6" Fan Controller
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Old 02-12-2019, 09:09 PM   #3
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I do Offroad really hard and found the best of both worlds for me. I have a 2010 Range Rover Sport Supercharged, 510hp and 461lbs torque. 2.5" lift on 32s. I have a Curt receiver, Hayes sway master and P3 controller. The Sport is an absolute beast offroad and a dream on road. Towing the 23fb Airstream is no chore for her. Full air suspension and AWD I dont need load leveling at all and the trailer is well under all the weight capacities. Just got back from Joshua Tree and next trip is to Tierra Del Sol with a bunch of Rovers. I was an Offroad driving instructor for Land Rover for 11 years so Im kinda spoiled and would not consider anything else to wheel in.

Next upgrade on the trailer is the lift for a little more ground clearance.

Here are a couple pix.
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Old 02-13-2019, 06:00 AM   #4
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Off Road With A Jeep (JKU)

One criteria we used when looking for an Airstream was the ability to lash up safely with our Jeep. Can-Am RV were able to strengthen the receiver and as a result we have been coast to coast. We love to drive on the beach and dunes with the top down.

OBX NC
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Silver Lake MI
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Coulee City WA
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Pacific City OR
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Old 02-13-2019, 07:18 AM   #5
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I have done lots of four wheeling in the Panamint valley and the ca desert in general, I have a 78 cj5 with lockers on both ends, fuel injected, winch, on board air, etc and it goes anywhere your brave enough to take it. That said I have gone with groups and have seen STOCK Tacoma 4x4's goes places I thought not possible, no need for a rock crawler to explore the backcountry.
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Old 02-13-2019, 09:18 AM   #6
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I agree with AlinCal above - "Off Road" do not mean simply the ability to be a "Rock Crawler" We have a F-150 with 4x4 capability, the BF KO2 tires and 2" front Lift that will take us just about anywhere. 90% of our camping is "Off Grid" on logging roads and trails in British Columbia Canada.
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Old 02-13-2019, 09:35 AM   #7
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Some great examples above. Just what I was hoping for!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlinCal View Post
I have done lots of four wheeling in the Panamint valley and the ca desert in general, I have a 78 cj5 with lockers on both ends, fuel injected, winch, on board air, etc and it goes anywhere your brave enough to take it. That said I have gone with groups and have seen STOCK Tacoma 4x4's goes places I thought not possible, no need for a rock crawler to explore the backcountry.
No question CJ's are a definitive off-roader. The distinction here is that we want to talk about tow vehicles in combination with off-road capability. So while awesome, a 78 CJ is better suited as a towed/toad behind a motorhome.

Tacoma's would qualify here. They do have pretty great off-road capability bone stock. On account of compact size and articulation capabilities. Along with A-Trac that enables pseudo locker functionality. Some years have locking rear diffs stock, so bonus there. Of course, an individuals driving capability can make up a lot of difference as well.

What I meant in regards to bone stock 4x4 pickups, is the 4x4 truck contingent, especially the HD ones that have zero articulation (we all know them), declaring "off-road" competency. There's a spectrum. I'm hoping to talk about ones that can do more than your average fire road, and tow an Airstream!

Quote:
Originally Posted by drbrick View Post
I agree with AlinCal above - "Off Road" do not mean simply the ability to be a "Rock Crawler" We have a F-150 with 4x4 capability, the BF KO2 tires and 2" front Lift that will take us just about anywhere. 90% of our camping is "Off Grid" on logging roads and trails in British Columbia Canada.
That sounds awesome! These forums generally focus on towing payload, and mods associated with more towing stability (i.e. sway bar, stiffness)... And would frown on AT tires, lift, slinkier suspension, etc. Please share pics!
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Old 02-13-2019, 09:45 AM   #8
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I was only trying to qualify my opinion of the 4x4 Tacoma, Your right the cj5 IS NOT a good tv.
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Old 02-13-2019, 10:42 AM   #9
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hey pteck -

I've got a Toyota Tundra doublecab TRD that I've updated with Bilstein 5160 and 6112 shocks (2.5" front shock diameter up front, with reservoir shocks in the rear) which provide ~2" lift in front. Plus Firestone airbags. Am running forged alloy 17" rims with load range E BFG KO2s at about 34" diameter. Also have a camper shell with burly roof rack where I stow aux fuel and recovery boards.

The upgrades I've got essentially turn my Tundra into something similar to the Tundra TRD Pro, but with much better wheels, and rebuildable shocks.

Tows my 2003 25' Classic (6,000 pounds empty) very well, and the truck does great offroad.
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Old 02-13-2019, 04:23 PM   #10
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Off Road TV

Thank you for starting this thread
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Old 02-14-2019, 01:21 PM   #11
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Just to clarify, in Arizona where I live it is illegal to travel off road. I believe when most people refer to traveling off road what they really mean is to travel on unmaintained or primitive roads. Some of which required a 4x4 vehicle. I believe that is what most people on this forum are referring to.
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Old 02-14-2019, 04:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Special-Ed View Post
I do Offroad really hard and found the best of both worlds for me. I have a 2010 Range Rover Sport Supercharged, 510hp and 461lbs torque. 2.5" lift on 32s. I have a Curt receiver, Hayes sway master and P3 controller. The Sport is an absolute beast offroad and a dream on road. Towing the 23fb Airstream is no chore for her. Full air suspension and AWD I dont need load leveling at all and the trailer is well under all the weight capacities. Just got back from Joshua Tree and next trip is to Tierra Del Sol with a bunch of Rovers. I was an Offroad driving instructor for Land Rover for 11 years so Im kinda spoiled and would not consider anything else to wheel in.

Next upgrade on the trailer is the lift for a little more ground clearance.

Here are a couple pix.
Attachment 333496



Attachment 333497

You have our vote. Hands down nothing beats a Land Rover.



Best regards and safe travels
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Old 02-14-2019, 05:09 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AIRTRVL View Post
-- snip -- most people refer to traveling off road what they really mean is to travel on unmaintained or primitive roads. -- snip --
I would think they were talking about something more like

http://www.rubicon-trail.com/

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Old 02-14-2019, 06:20 PM   #14
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Great thread!
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