Originally Posted by Adam Geuss
We try to buy and use "stuff" well within the expressed parameters established by the manufacturer. Overkill I admit as a means to protect ourselves from inadvertent misuse. Our way.
That has always been my philosophy also.
Ever since I have been on this forum I have read much debate about selection of tow vehicles.
Despite being a retired engineer, I have no real insight into how well a vehicle not rated by the manufacturer can be successfully "modified" to tow heavier trailers. Many factors involved.
It does seem from what I have read here though that people who do use smaller vehicles seem completely happy with their choice and with the performance results.
For my part though, there are several basic reasons I would not go that route:
(1) My feeling is that the better choice for longevity and reliability of any piece of mechanical equipment is to use it at some lower percentage level than the manufacturer has determined to be its maximum rating.
(2) Seems to me a heavy, long wheel-based vehicle with large brakes has to be a safer arrangement for towing. I have towed with lighter vehicles than we now own - though still adequately rated - and find that the present experience involves fewer white knuckle situation, and that feeling that the tail is close to being ready to wag the dog! I also use a Hensley hitch now as well so Im sure that helps a lot.
(3) Having no legal background, I don't really know the potential impact on my liability, but my sense is that I would be in a bad position if ever involved in an accident and the facts surfaced that I was towing a heavy trailer with a vehicle not having the appropriate capacity rating.
Even if this were never to become an issue, I am such a worry wart and would always have the concern in the back of my mind and that would always detract from my enjoyment of the RV lifestyle!
That's my take on the debate!
As for carrying motorcycles, I would love to take my bike on our RV trips, but it weighs around 900 pounds and I only weigh 145! I think that for me to try to get it up onto the truck bed on ramps would be a disaster waiting to happen, especially since the TV id a 4x4 and the bed is quite high.
I did consider it when we bought the truck but conclude that the only way I would do it would be with one of those self loading rigs designed for the purpose.
But the fact that we make so much use out of our truck bed with a cap to keep clutter out of the trailer precludes that, so I have to be satisfied with taking bicycles instead!