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Old 04-08-2015, 02:38 AM   #1
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1971 25' Tradewind
1993 34' Excella
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Estancia , New Mexico
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Towing a 34' Triple

I am looking at a 99 34' Excella triple axle. I am thinking of buying it for extra living space but also want to occasionally tow it. When I tow, I am planning on taking it to places I will be staying for a while, like a week or more.

I have a 99 F250 gasser with a 350 Triton engine that is in good shape and I am overall very happy with. When towing my 1971 25' Tradewind (which I am keeping) I can do a little bit better than the semis in the passing lane up grades but the engine is working pretty hard.

How do you think my F250 will work at towing the Excella triple? Would a 3/4 ton work at all or do I need a one ton? Would a 3/4 ton with a big block V8 be the way to go? Would a diesel pull better than a gasser?

Thanks for the advice,

Sail on silver girl. Sail on by. Your time has come to shine.
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Old 04-08-2015, 03:38 AM   #2
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2011 34' Classic
Westchester Cty.NY , / Miami FL
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what is the gear ratio in the rear end?

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Old 04-08-2015, 03:40 AM   #3
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1999 34' Excella
NE Central , Kansas
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Welcome to the world of '34!

Your F250 should be fine on the plains. It will struggle a bit harder on the long grades in the mountains than with your tradewind. I've pulled mine with a 3/4 ton Suburban between Alamogordo and Roswell with no issues, but I remember the longer grades in Arizona as a slow ride. You will like the power a diesel gives, but it isn't a 'must have' (for me). Your driving style will determine what TV works best for you.
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Old 04-08-2015, 05:46 AM   #4
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1971 25' Tradewind
1993 34' Excella
Currently Looking...
Estancia , New Mexico
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Images: 16
I misstated the year of the 34 in my initial post,. It's a 93 not a 99. It's in the forums classifieds for 22,900. Any thoughts on the price?

Richinny- I don't remember exactly the rear end ratio. I do remember it's in the middle somewhere. Not a the torquey stump puller and not a total highway cruiser. If I find out I will repost.
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Old 04-08-2015, 06:03 AM   #5
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1993 34' Excella
, Maryland
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I went from a 31' to a 34' and did not notice any difference in the towing. I think it's more the air displacement of the trailer than the extra weight. Once it is moving that is.

Yes, a diesel will pull better but you have to think about how often you are going to be towing to determine if it is worth it.

I can't say if the price of the one you are looking at is good or not. I can tell you that I bought ours a couple of years ago and paid 15k for it. The dealer said it was 80% there mechanically. What that meant was one major roof leak, replacement of the TV antenna, bathroom fan, inverter, propane regulator, shock absorbers, and repairing the black water drain valve. All of which probably cost $1600 - 1700 because I did all of the work except for the shocks.

1993 34' Excella 1000
2005 Dodge Ram 3500 Diesel
(No it doesn't have a HEMI in it)
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Old 04-08-2015, 07:20 AM   #6
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Common Sense , Texas
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You do not need a 1 ton to tow a 34' Airstream. It will be heavier than the 25' you are currently towing, and will be a noticeable change, but I would suggest you tow it for a while before making any tow vehicle changes.

More power is always good IMHO, and there's none better than a Diesel because of the massive amount of torque.

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Old 04-08-2015, 07:48 AM   #7
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1976 31' Sovereign
Oswego , Illinois
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A gasser with rear end ratio of 411 should pull good. Why pur. noisy stinky diesel at much greater cost than gasser when gasser properly geared will pull very well. Diesel owners like them I do not except for big trucks.
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Old 04-08-2015, 07:50 AM   #8
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1994 34' Excella
Warren , Manitoba
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I went from a 1976 31' to the 1994 34' trailer. I think (just my mind maybe) that the 34' pulls easier. Our TV is a Chev diesel and would not pull with a gas, but that is my choice. Have driven diesels since they first came out, and have been very happy with both the old 6.5 and the new Duramax. The original 6.2 was not good for pulling. Hav a friend with the same truck in gas and he gets 1/2 the mileage I do. It is all personal preference, but diesel for me!!! You will enjoy the 34' for the room. Chris
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1976 31' Gone but fondly remembered
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Old 04-08-2015, 08:00 AM   #9
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1993 34' Excella
York , South Carolina
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Not debating here, just stating the facts as they pertain to my experience:

I have towed with gassers over 20 years, 200,00 miles.

I towed our 34' with a Chevy van, 454 w/ 410 gears for about a year, probably 10,000 miles.

Last 4 years I have towed w/ Dodge 6.7 diesel, about 40,000 miles.

I will never go back to a gasser for towing.

Just my 2 cents.

PS: love the 34's.
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Old 04-08-2015, 10:50 AM   #10
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1999 34' Excella
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34' rule!!!

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Load up and smile.

Your Ford should do fine!
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Old 04-08-2015, 11:55 AM   #11
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I have pulled my 30ft. 94 Excella with my 99 long bed GMC 3/4 6.0L 300HP since 2000 here in Arizona and the West. If I had it to do over, I would get a diesel for the few times I pull in the Rockies or on the one or long grades (one over 9 miles long) on I-8 going over to San Diego. The trailer weighs over 9,000lbs loaded. It does fine on the flat freeways. I cruise at about 62-63 with the TOW/Haul on... I get 12-13 MPG when not towing and 9-10MPG when towing. Going up the grades, I drop it into second...making sure the TOW/Haul is engaged and the AC is OFF and grind it out at 20-30 miles an hour till we read the top watching the temp and transmission gauges all the way up each hill.... they both rise... but never into the red ranges. I would have bought a diesel way back then, but they were in a model/engine change and I needed a truck THEN... so this is what I got. It tows rock solid with the Hensley Hitch and my truck's long wheel base... never ever have had any trailer sway issues... but I have seen some on the road in front of me more than once... anyway, I would say you would be fine with a gasser unless you are towing in the West alot where you go up and down the larger grades... I like the fact that both my trailer and truck have both been paid for years and insurances costs are lower too... I would hate to be buying a new diesel today... but hey... pay your money ...make your choice...
94 30 Ft. Front Kitchen Excella
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Old 04-08-2015, 12:09 PM   #12
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The rear ratio is the only question and if you are not going to tow often that becomes less of a question.
2004 Excursion 4x4
1991 34 ft. Excella +220,000 miles, new laminated flooring, new upholstery, new 3200 lbs axles

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Old 04-08-2015, 12:13 PM   #13
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1995 30' Excella
Bowie , Maryland
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An F-250 is plenty to tow pretty much any and all Airstream trailers ever made, including the 34'. And, even if you have a 'bad' gear ratio for towing, that at most means you'll be slower on the hills. That's it.

1995 Airstream Classic 30' Excella 1000
2014 Ram 2500 Crew Cab with Cummins 6.7L Diesel

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Old 04-08-2015, 01:08 PM   #14
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2012 28' International
2009 34' Panamerica
Poplarville , Mississippi
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 163
I have a 28' Signature and a 34' Pan America (very heavy).

I have a 2013 3/4-ton Suburban with tow package and a 2014 3/4-ton 2500HD Duramax.

The diesel is a more comfortable pull, has grunt when needed and cheaper on fuel but if I weren't planning on going long distances, the Suburban is fine though a fuel guzzler.

Before getting the PA, I had a 31' Classic which I horse-traded toward the PA and the Classic was a very easy tow and lighter tongue than the 28'. Actually, I prefer the way the 34' pulls over the 28'. Both of my trailers are tongue heavy and I'm running ProPrides on each (960 lbs & 1,470 lbs, respectively). The revelation I had when I first started towing the 34' was the stopping power of the extra brakes on the 3rd axle. That and I like the fact of less load for each wheel to support. I love my long trailer.

I think the 34' will pull fine for you and unless you are going long distances or crossing mountain ranges, I'd follow the advice above and just tow with what you have to get a feel for it. Fuel economy and speed isn't that big a deal if you don't tow often or cross-country. I've pull a lot more with a lot less.

Frankly, the only downside I see to the longer trailer is its easier to find shorter campground slots but not a major issue.


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