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Old 07-28-2005, 09:37 AM   #1
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Post Tow vehicle question re: Suburban

Do I have to have a 2500 Suburban to pull a 68 Overlander dry weight 4170 or would a 1500 Suburban do. Used 1500's are easier to find. Thanks.
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Old 07-28-2005, 10:03 AM   #2
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I used a 1994, 5.7L (pre-Vortec) 1500 Silverado pickup the first two years I pulled my Limited (scale weight, 8400#). It did OK, although it had to work real hard to do it. I had 3.73 gears and before I started to use it I had an auxiliary transmission cooler installed. If you have the 3.73 gears you ought to be OK with the Vortec engine. Definitely have an auxiliary transmission oil cooler installed before you pull.
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Old 07-28-2005, 10:34 AM   #3
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Our 1999 Suburban 1500 does fine pulling our 1964 Overlander.
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Old 07-28-2005, 10:43 AM   #4
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New(er) 1/2 ton Suburbans are rated:

1/2-ton 2WD (lbs.) 7400 3.42
1/2-ton 2WD (lbs.) 8400 4.10
1/2-ton 4x4 (lbs.) 7200 3.42
1/2-ton 4x4 (lbs.) 8200 4.10

All have the 5.3L engine.

So the answer is yes a 1/2 would do and I would suspect that the older models pre 2000 would also have similar ratings. I would make sure that there was also a trans cooler on it or add one.

My feeling is that once you start to pass somewhere between the 6,000 to 7,000lb wet range the 3/4 ton does provide additional support items not found in the 1/2 tons.
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Old 07-28-2005, 10:53 AM   #5
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The other part of the equation is that apart from the engine many 3/4 ton trucks are better equipped, frame, brakes, shocks, heavy duty transmission, to deal with the riggors of heavy towing. My own experience with towing my previous '01 27' Safari with a 1/2 ton van and and 3/4 ton van showed a remarkable difference in suspension. Most noticable was dealing with dips in the road. You know those nasty dips where the trailer goes nose down then pitches back up pulling the back end of the tow vehicle up, then back down again. Nasty stuff.

White knuckle when I pulled with the 1/2 ton, just a small dip and then back in control with the 3/4 ton. Difference? Bigger springs and shocks. Now you can get into a case of overkill and too big a vehicle carries its own issues like transmitting road shock back to the trailer which is no good either. So while bigger is sometimes better, its all relative to what you are towning.

Interestingly enough, it wasn't that I was unhappy with the performace of my half ton van. I just didn't realize how much better a 3/4 ton vehicle would make it.

Jack
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Old 07-28-2005, 01:00 PM   #6
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Hola


Have you thought of a vintage tow vehicle to tow the vintage trailer ????
I just got though contacting http://hotaugustnights.net/ since I want to pull our vintage 1970 AS in the 2006's Grand Finalle Parade*. After I assured them I was going to use the event vehicle ( a 1 of 1,010 produced '62 Imperial Crown Coupe ) the Parade Gods said OK.

Rodger & Gabby
Colo Spgs

* I want to go through the parade and then hit the hwy for home. To go through the parade and then hook up the AS would put me in the middle of the night ( & Nev ).
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Old 07-28-2005, 02:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bdogz
Do I have to have a 2500 Suburban to pull a 68 Overlander dry weight 4170 or would a 1500 Suburban do. Used 1500's are easier to find. Thanks.
We pull our's with a 2001 1500 Suburban with no concerns.
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Old 07-28-2005, 03:05 PM   #8
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We towed a 31ft excella 1984 vintage with a 1500 5.7 and even a standard read-end ratio.


No problems with 40,000 miles from coast to coast.


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