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Old 03-27-2008, 08:58 AM   #1
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2007 28' Safari SE
Westlake , Ohio
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 34
TV Input

I'm going to open up a can of worms, one that no doubt has been opened before. I have a lot of considerations, so I'm going to throw it all out there one more time. Here's my situation...

I have a 28' Safari, GVWR 7300 lbs. 2006 Durango, GCWR of 14K and towing towing capacity 8950. Hensley hitch (added tongue weight).

119" wheelbase, comparable to Expedition. I was going to buy a 25' and spoke to an AS owner with same setup, and he said it worked great. 28' weighs only about 100 lbs. more, so we went with it.

2 year old vehicle, 5K negative equity.


1. Keep what we have and see how it goes. With the Hensley, should be stable. Might be underpowered, but we only tow maybe 2,000 miles a year. Re-asses situation next year.

2. Buy an older Suburban 2500 for about 8-10 grand and use it for towing, keep it until the Durango is more "tradeable". We have 2 kids, so a truck is not an option I want to consider.

3. Suck it up and eat the negative equity and buy a newer Suburban.

4. 'Trade down the trailer' (I'm sure I could find someone here who would like to trade up) to a 25'. Would that make a difference? Probably not. It's a wild idea, but I'm throwing everything out there.

I know that there are a lot of you who think that anything less than a 3/4 ton is worthless, so I will keep that in mind.

Please reply especially if you have towed with a Durango (2004 and beyond). The older Durango was built on the Dakota frame, and the newer one is longer.

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Old 03-27-2008, 09:16 AM   #2
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Greetings from the Florida Panhandle

Since you are all set up and ready to go, I would try a couple of shorter adventures, and see how the combo works. If it works within your comfort zone, continue. If it's not, trade the TV for somthing heftier. If you do end up going the Suburban/Yukon XL route, go for the 2500 (3/4 ton). It's a much better match for a 28 footer.

Also, I noticed in your photo that the front of the Durango is riding high. You may want to crank down the WD bars on the HAHA. Riding light on the steering wheels is dangerous.

Good luck and safe travels,

SuEllyn & Brian McCabe
WBCCI #3628 -- AIR #14872 -- TAC #FL-7
2015 FC 25' FB (Lucy) with HAHA
2005 Suburban 2500 Quadrasteer (Olivia) & 2011 Silverado 3500 (Fred) with Outfitter Truck Camper (Ethel)
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Old 03-27-2008, 12:11 PM   #3
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there are many threads that cover the durango, here's just one.

myoung has posted about towing with his many times, but he's pulling a 25...

after originally thinking about buying a 28 safari SLIDE OUT here....


while wheel base is important, the big issue with your combo is the payload.

at 1600lbs or so you may be OVER that number...and adjusting the spring bars won't change that.

while a/s list the tongue at 800+ lbs, that is only an estimate.

the 28 may have a REAL tongue weight of 1000lb once lp gas and spare tire and options and packing are included.

have you weighed the trailer and tongue yet?

the haha doesn't add to tongue weight, but it does count against payload...another 250lbs...

so that's 1200-1300 lbs of payload, and doesn't include passengers, fuel, gear and STUFF in the suv....

so while you may be under the gcwr, being OVER payload isn't wise.

i favor the option of buying a 2nd older primary tow vehicle with adequate capacity.

a 4 door truck will have the higher capacity, but suvs can work...

again with an old 'bourbon, you will still need to look at payload.

the newer/old ones are HEAVY, so they don't have as much payload (1500s) as you might imagine.

80s burb's (2500s) are better mules.

regardless of era, adding E rated tires on the tv will help.

all of the true things that i am about to tell you are shameless lies. l.b.j.

we are here on earth to fart around. don't let anybody tell you any different. k.v.
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Old 03-28-2008, 08:57 PM   #4
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The 28 is a great combination of size and still in the weight range of a 25. Our vehicles are different indeed yet with your negative equity and depending on your financial situation I would suggest holding out. The newer durangos are a very impressive SUV. You have invested in the HAHA so lets take this decision slow. Try some shorter trips and remember to let your engine rev on long grades both up and down. You can read some past posting I have on gas engines and suggested rpm ranges for long grades etc. Tow out of overdrive, keep your vehicle loaded lightly and put most of the stuff in the streamer where you need it. Keep us posted
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Old 03-29-2008, 05:15 AM   #5
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Anything but Option #4 . You'll still be looking at pretty much the same tow vehicle tradeoffs with a 25'.

I'm with 'Safari 28'. The rig looks like it can tow safely and within specs so tow the heck out of it. It should help you narrow down what you want in your next TV by knowing what the Durango does and doesn't do well.

And as 2air sez, double check the payload weight on Durango. You can move gear to the Airstream if needed. And yup, up the load rating of yout tires to D or E next time.

btw "you got a hemi?"

2006 Safari SE FB
2000 F150 4.2L
2011 F250 6.2L
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Old 03-29-2008, 05:55 AM   #6
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In my opinion, for what ever that's worth, I'd use it for a while and see how you like it. I think you will be safe enough, assuming you have the weight distribution setup right, but unless the Durango was originally purchased with the big engine and the towing package, you will probably be dissatisfied with the power. If you are dissatisfied with the towing power, you will probably want to trade the Durango, but in any event, I say give it a shot.
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Old 03-29-2008, 07:02 AM   #7
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In short, you already have all the equipment, try it and see what happens.
Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy, and taste good with ketchup.
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Old 03-29-2008, 07:21 AM   #8

2003 25' Classic
Zanadude Nebula , WNY
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What Everyone Says

You've got a good combo, with a great hitch, don't jump ship yet!!

Give it a try, if YOUR comfortable thats all that matters. Hit the scales and try to get the front down on the Rango. If it feels good, do it.
AF #1

"Sticks & stones can break your bones...and hail will dent your Airstream"

So when is this..."old enough to know better" supposed to kick in?
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Old 03-29-2008, 07:51 AM   #9
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Maximum payload for a 2006 4WD SLT Durango at 2006 Dodge Durango specs, auto safety at Edmunds is 1400#. Subtract 1000# tongue weight and the remainder is the maximum you can put in the vehicle (including people). It will "pull" but please consider the safety of your passengers, emergency braking and avoidance maneuvers.

A respected option is to get your current configuration tuned to the max. The Hensley is a necessary starting point. It will require some other changes. But give Andy Thomsen at Can-AM RV a call and schedule a session. Mapquest says London, Ontario is 4 hours away from you. For sure report back if you do this.


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