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Old 12-06-2012, 07:24 AM   #29
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Except that unitized structure (unibody) cars are built more strongly than body-on-frame. A Chrysler product car of the 1950's - 1970's was a great deal lighter and stronger -- and a better tow vehicle -- than any Ford or GM. Plenty of other advantages to them as well (brakes, transmission, engine). They were disproportionally represented among TV's of that era due to this.

Hitches were custom-built. Better than the off-the-shelf stuff of today. And the OEM's provided basics for installers on the how-to. A unibody car -- with a reasonably sized TT -- still did not weigh as much as a BOF car even with WD hitch and WD applied in some instances.

The current Charger/300 is based on the Mercedes W123 . . hardly a "weak" vehicle.

This is not the first time we've covered this. Nor is it at all in line with historical experience.

And todays cars are just flat better built.

The correctly-made hitch is the question to cover.



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Old 12-12-2012, 05:09 PM   #30
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You have to go back to the early thirties to find a car with a real strong, bridge like frame. Back then the bodies were made out of a wooden framework with metal panels tacked on, and all the strength was in the frame. A typical frame had a 7" deep C channel side rail.

As soon as the all steel bodies became popular, from the mid thirties on, they depended more on the strength of the body and less on the frame. Frames became skimpier, 3 or 4" deep, made of metal half as thick as the old ones. But tied to the body with many rubber insulated mounts.

The strength was in the body, not the frame. The frame was only there to hold the engine, trans, front suspension and rear axle, and isolate road noise and engine vibration from the body.

Unitized construction just finished the job of integrating the body and frame. In fact most unit construction designs had a front sub frame rubber mounted to the body, to isolate engine and suspension vibrations and for no other reason.

Strength of body on frame vs unitized construction is a function of the design, either can be equally strong.

One time I was in a junk yard and asked the guy who operated the crusher, what car was strongest and hardest to squash. He answered without hesitating, "an old Dodge".

Dodges and other Chrysler products featured unitized construction since 1960.
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Old 12-12-2012, 07:04 PM   #31
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Unibody Imperials of the 1960's & '70's were/are banned from many demo derbys due to being indestructible. They'd literally just tear through the opposition and circle around for more.

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Old 12-12-2012, 07:37 PM   #32
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So when is one of you ( supporters of this thread ) going to open this type of business in the states and rake in the cash setting up these type of towing setups?
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Old 12-12-2012, 10:09 PM   #33
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Everybody thinks that the weight ratings from the factory are a descretionary figure you can just ignore. All I can say is tell the D.O.T officer that when you get pulled over and get a substantial fine or they even park you beside the road until you get a vehicle that is rated to tow your camper. I tow for a living from the manufactures to the dealers ( yes they are sob) but D.O.T. doesn't mess around. You can try to stand and tell him such and such set your TV up or you have all this high end weight hitch and every other trick in the book and he won't care. Also if you are involved in a wreck even without injuries you could be sued and all this guessing and debating will get you nowhere in court. Hope this gives you something to think about. Just remember "BECAUSE YOU CAN PULL DOESN'T MEAN YOU CAN STOP IT OR CONTROL IT"
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Old 12-12-2012, 11:11 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by Roxy View Post
Hi all, back on the subject of towing a 31' A/S with a 300 or Charger, I have read several posts about the legalities of towing over the tow rating, my question is are there any members that have had issues with being stopped and checked as well with the proper hitch (hensley) and modification to the mounted hitch on the tow vehicle is the vehicle considered legal to tow the 31' A/S?
Same old stuff, 32 replies and no one answered the op's question. So if there has been no one stopped, is the o.p. breaking a law towing a 31' Airstream with Chrysler 300 or Charger (aside from commercial operators)?

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Old 12-13-2012, 07:45 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by panheaddale View Post
Just remember "BECAUSE YOU CAN PULL DOESN'T MEAN YOU CAN STOP IT OR CONTROL IT"

A good point that is brought up many times.

If you do some research you will find that many/most of the talked about pro set up TV's/Airstreams excel when it comes to braking and control.
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Old 12-13-2012, 08:11 AM   #36
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The Law

The law in these states is "manufactured stated gross weight":

Arizona
California
Connecticut
Florida
Kentucky
Louisiana
Nebraska
New Mexico
North Dakota
Utah
Quebec
Yukon

It appears to me there is a trend towards this because this is the first time I've been able to find it, and obviously you will be illegal in these states if you exceed "manufacturerd stated gross weight".

Now, the question is, will you be stopped and weighed, or will you only be weighed after an incident or accident on the road, but in any event if you are found towing over weight, you are violating the law at least in the states noted above.

If you want to know the laws in the other states, or my source, here it is:
http://www.towingworld.com/articles/TowingLaws.htm
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Old 12-13-2012, 08:59 AM   #37
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YES, you are breaking the law.D.O.T. weight rules don,t just apply to commercial vehicles. That being said you generally don,t see them after anyone other than commercially driven vehicles. Yes the 300 or the charger will tow the airstream down the road, and with good trailer brake set up it will stop it,but if you have a failure in the system somwhere you are going to be putting your life, your families life, and possibly my life (if I happened to be on the road near you)or someone elses life in harms way. IMHO that risk is not worth it. The airstream were towed by big sedans back in the day. The FRAMES WERE THE STRENGTH OF THE CAR. They were as bullet proof then as a pickup was, but you had cars weighing 4,000 pounds and built like a tank. You could wreck one of them and repair it now day the cars and small suv everyone wants to tow with if you wreck one they just crumple up and the insurance company totals them.
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Old 12-13-2012, 09:33 AM   #38
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I'd agree with pretty much all that Bill M says so I don't think that the OP needs to have any concerns regarding legality.

Manufacturers' tow ratings are such nebulous figures that would never stand up to any scrutiny in a court. Even the new SAE towing standards don't measure up because they cannot take account of any modifications you may make to your tow vehicle to improve its towing performance.

Where ratings are simple measures of force, such as a weight on an axle or tire then there might be some room for enforcement but tow ratings? No, not enforceable until someone documents exactly how said rating was both derived and tested.
Weight rating in Canada might be just some magical number that is pulled out of a hat and written down on whatever whim the manufacturer wanted to write down that day but down here in the good ole USA manufacture weight rating are used and enforced on a daily basis. They are used so people will know whether a vehicle is capable or and is legal to tow the load you are going to be towing
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Old 12-13-2012, 09:54 AM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
The law in these states is "manufactured stated gross weight":

Arizona
California
Connecticut
Florida
Kentucky
Louisiana
Nebraska
New Mexico
North Dakota
Utah
Quebec
Yukon

It appears to me there is a trend towards this because this is the first time I've been able to find it, and obviously you will be illegal in these states if you exceed "manufacturerd stated gross weight".

Now, the question is, will you be stopped and weighed, or will you only be weighed after an incident or accident on the road, but in any event if you are found towing over weight, you are violating the law at least in the states noted above.

If you want to know the laws in the other states, or my source, here it is:
http://www.towingworld.com/articles/TowingLaws.htm

Steve,

You're absolutely right, the stated gross weight as indicated on your door pillar sticker is indeed a finite measure and one easily enforced (if those in authority wish to). I trust that you're not confusing the stated gross weight with the manufacturer's tow rating, though, as the two are not the same thing.
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Old 12-13-2012, 10:03 AM   #40
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Steve,

You're absolutely right, the stated gross weight as indicated on your door pillar sticker is indeed a finite measure and one easily enforced (if those in authority wish to). I trust that you're not confusing the stated gross weight with the manufacturer's tow rating, though, as the two are not the same thing.
I'm not confusing the two.

I've asked you this before, and you never responded.....have you actually weighed your minivan loaded and hooked to the Airstream, and was it under the manufacurer's gross weight?
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Old 12-13-2012, 10:03 AM   #41
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Originally Posted by panheaddale View Post
Weight rating in Canada might be just some magical number that is pulled out of a hat and written down on whatever whim the manufacturer wanted to write down that day but down here in the good ole USA manufacture weight rating are used and enforced on a daily basis. They are used so people will know whether a vehicle is capable or and is legal to tow the load you are going to be towing
See my reply to SteveH. I trust that you're not confusing the stated gross vehicle weight with the manufacturers' tow rating because the two are not the same. GVWR is stated on your door pillar sticker and can be enforced should the authorities wish to. The manufacturers' tow rating is an arbitrary figure used largely by marketing people to sell trucks. There are numerous threads that discuss the issue of tow ratings and, despite many dire warnings from contributors here, no one has yet come forward with any evidence of law enforcement problems, warranty or liability issues as a result of exceeding a manufacturer's tow rating.

Just saying....
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Old 12-13-2012, 10:04 AM   #42
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I'm not confusing the two.

I've asked you this before, and you never responded.....have you actually weighed your minivan loaded and hooked to the Airstream, and was it under the manufacurer's gross weight?
Yes I have and it is. Didn't realise I'd not responded on that.
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