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Old 07-04-2015, 02:15 PM   #211
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Originally Posted by Air Cruiser View Post
Sorry that's a 25' Safari Thanks, Frank (Deb's husband).
My opinion is that you have a fine tow vehicle for 25 or 28 foot Airstream. however make sure you choose an appropriately rated anti sway/weight distribution hitch.


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Old 07-04-2015, 02:16 PM   #212
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Appreciate the post! Good info. Thinking of trading off our 23' Safari on a 28' Serenity. What's your opinion on a tow vehicle for a 28' AS? We have a 2011 GMC 2500HD 4X4, crew cab, 6.0 gas. Is this enough truck with some service factor built in?

I tow a 30' Classic slide out with GMC 2500 van. My difference from you is you carry extra overhead the 4 wheel drive and I have the 4.10 rear axle. I weigh in at about 8,600 lbs without fresh water. Van is rated to pull 9,900 lbs.

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Old 07-04-2015, 02:21 PM   #213
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i have to say, setting up my brake controllers has not been a difficult thing to accomplish. i don't feel the trailer pushing me on 8% downhills, i feel it doing its job braking in consort with my TV. if your trailer is pushing you, its your fault for not taking the time to set up your brake controller properly. pretty much has nothing to do with whatever TV you choose to use.



my trailer brakes come on a fraction after i start braking, a fraction. fine line there but not difficult to find it if you take your time and try some different setups before you leave home.

Bingo!
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Old 07-04-2015, 02:26 PM   #214
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Just remember to do your set up your controller when on a level surface. I used a flat empty parking lot when doing mine. It's especially critical when using an inertial control. If you don't know or understand the process, ask. Lots of folks can help.

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Old 07-04-2015, 03:14 PM   #215
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Of coarse it's conjecture…that'a a given

The scary thing is that the fireman said it was a straight away. and the grade was only 5%.

I overheard a guy from Colorado say

" Flatlanders don't know how to drive around here. We don't ride the brakes, I come to a full stop along the way depending how long the grade is"

There is a temptation to pick up speed for the next incline, and a temptation to coast really fast because you are not burning gas
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Old 07-04-2015, 03:26 PM   #216
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I have no idea why, but with all three travel trailers I have owned, I have always ended up at the max gain setting. Right now we have a P3 and We use max gain and B2 on the highway, B1 in town and no boost in a campground or other similar place.

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Old 07-04-2015, 06:10 PM   #217
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A 5000lb trailer behind a 8000lb truck will be much safer than the opposite. You try to stop an 8000lb trailer with a 5000lb tow vehicle when the trailer brakes are not great, then the trailer will easily push the tow vehicle.
Not necessarily. A light car with a high top speed will need stronger brakes than a heavy vehicle with a low top speed - the demand made on brakes increases in line with weight, with speed it is exponential.

Not an opinion, that's physics and one of the many reasons why the often made argument "you can't stop it with a SUV/van/passenger car makes so very little sense.

Additionally, weight does not equal tire traction, far from it. Again, the suspension and the centre of gravity will have far greater effect on traction than simply weight.

I am not suggesting to tow an 8000lbs trailer with a 2000lbs vehicle, most modern vans and SUVs weigh in at around 6000lbs.
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Old 07-04-2015, 07:06 PM   #218
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Two Airstream rollovers in a month

Brakes on modern vehicles pretty much have squat to do with stopping ability as they all have the capability to lock down a wheel under about any circumstance, the limitation is mostly going to be with the tire contacting the road.

Pretty much all modern cars are bricks these days.

A new V6 Camaro outweighs my 55 Lincoln (see avatar) by a couple hundred pounds.

#JustSayin
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Old 07-04-2015, 08:15 PM   #219
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Not necessarily. A light car with a high top speed will need stronger brakes than a heavy vehicle with a low top speed - the demand made on brakes increases in line with weight, with speed it is exponential.

Not an opinion, that's physics and one of the many reasons why the often made argument "you can't stop it with a SUV/van/passenger car makes so very little sense.

Additionally, weight does not equal tire traction, far from it. Again, the suspension and the centre of gravity will have far greater effect on traction than simply weight.

I am not suggesting to tow an 8000lbs trailer with a 2000lbs vehicle, most modern vans and SUVs weigh in at around 6000lbs.
But you advocate pulling a 7500lbs Airstream travel trailer with a Honda Odyssey Mini van 4300-4600 lbs or with a Dodge Charger 4300 -4500lbs and both are known for having anemic brakes by themselves without pulling a 7500lbs trailer down steep mountain grades?
I think you have a different physics book than I do...........

A low center of gravity is great on cornering and in racing it is a must.I have driven many Ferrari's and Lamborghini's over the years both on and off the track so I can attest to that. I might also add that our Airstreams have a low center of gravity which allow them to tow better than most other brands.
If your example above was actually better for towing or pulling heavy objects (along being able to stop while towing these items) the modern day farm tractors would be light weight and 3 feet high.

Weight absolutely makes a difference when pulling a heavy trailer.
Especially going down a steep grade as the heavy trailer starts pushing the tv.
Wheel base also adds to stability also and are much more forgiving than a short wheelbase vehicles.
Tire width to a certain point also adds to stopping ability along with the vehicles braking system configuration and its ability to dissipate heat along with the number of pistons in the brake calipers and the contact area of the brake pads.60-70 of the braking force is achieved with the front brakes as you know.
In high speed cornering (I do not do this with my pickup much less while towing my Airstream)low a center of gravity as you have stated is a plus.It is also faster thru a slalom coarse as you have shown.I don't run slalom courses with my Airstream attached
Normal accident avoidance maneuvers can be achieved with a F350 6.7 diesel supercrew long wheelbase in capable hands(I know as I have done it).
I with all do respect strongly disagree with you on this.
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Old 07-04-2015, 08:22 PM   #220
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If the size/weight of what's doing the towing being less than size/weight of what's being towed is a big factor, I would think that semi tractor-trailers would be designed differently.

Ken
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Old 07-04-2015, 08:58 PM   #221
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If the size/weight of what's doing the towing being less than size/weight of what's being towed is a big factor, I would think that semi tractor-trailers would be designed differently.

Ken

It does.How many wheels are on a semi tractor and they are a fifth wheel by design,So when loaded how much weight is on those 10 wheels?
Nice try though....


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Old 07-04-2015, 09:53 PM   #222
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18 wheeler tractor brakes and suspension are designed to stop 80,000#.
18 wheeler tractors actually perform better when attached to a trailer. They are designed to be attached yo a trailer.


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Old 07-05-2015, 08:19 AM   #223
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But you advocate pulling a 7500lbs Airstream travel trailer with a Honda Odyssey Mini van 4300-4600 lbs or with a Dodge Charger 4300 -4500lbs and both are known for having anemic brakes by themselves without pulling a 7500lbs trailer down steep mountain grades?
I think you have a different physics book than I do...........

A low center of gravity is great on cornering and in racing it is a must.I have driven many Ferrari's and Lamborghini's over the years both on and off the track so I can attest to that. I might also add that our Airstreams have a low center of gravity which allow them to tow better than most other brands.
If your example above was actually better for towing or pulling heavy objects (along being able to stop while towing these items) the modern day farm tractors would be light weight and 3 feet high.

Weight absolutely makes a difference when pulling a heavy trailer.
Especially going down a steep grade as the heavy trailer starts pushing the tv.
Wheel base also adds to stability also and are much more forgiving than a short wheelbase vehicles.
Tire width to a certain point also adds to stopping ability along with the vehicles braking system configuration and its ability to dissipate heat along with the number of pistons in the brake calipers and the contact area of the brake pads.60-70 of the braking force is achieved with the front brakes as you know.
In high speed cornering (I do not do this with my pickup much less while towing my Airstream)low a center of gravity as you have stated is a plus.It is also faster thru a slalom coarse as you have shown.I don't run slalom courses with my Airstream attached
Normal accident avoidance maneuvers can be achieved with a F350 6.7 diesel supercrew long wheelbase in capable hands(I know as I have done it).
I with all do respect strongly disagree with you on this.

I am not sure where you get the idea from that the Honda has anemic brakes. That's simply not the case.

Here are some numbers.

The travel ready (not max) weight of a Honda Odyssey is around 5500 lbs, with gas and occupants. Top speed is electronically limited to 110 mph, or about 180 km/h.

If momentum (p) is mass x speed, then p equals 605,000 for the Honda at max velocity. We know that the braking system will be well equipped to deal with this - the vehicle is designed to come to a safe and controlled stop from maximum speed.

Additionally we know, and as a racing driver you will be keenly aware of this, demands on a braking system increase in line with weight, but exponential with speed.

In layman's terms this means that a faster, lighter, car will need beefier brakes than a slower, heavier car. It also explains why high end sports cars have huge brakes, despite carrying next to no weight. All that (p) needs to go somewhere.

So now lets run these numbers again in a towing situation.

5500 lbs (car) plus 7500 lbs (trailer) make for a total weight of 13,000 lbs. Towing at 60 mph means that p=780,000.

So while there's a difference in p of 175,000 at 60 mph, this almost disappears at 50 mph, and completely disappears just below.

This example also assumes non-working trailer brakes and completely dis-proves the oft made and never supported anemic brake argument. Add working trailer brakes into the equation and the numbers are even more favourable.

If you compare stopping distance from the same speed with a heavy duty truck and a van, the truck will almost always need more space. That's due to a number of factors - again as a racing driver you know about the difference suspension setup makes in handling and braking. Adding a trailer to the equation does not magically increase the capabilities of a truck, nor does it decrease the capabilities of a van.

As a little bit of an anecdote, the engineer who was, until his retirement, responsible for clearing 18 wheelers for use on Ontario's roads is an Airstream owner. His tow vehicle of choice? A Honda Odyssey.

As fas as the farm vehicle argument is concerned, I grew up on a farm. You and I both know what farm vehicles are designed to perform on fields, by definition off-road.

However, on the road those off-road assets become on-road issues, as anybody who has ever driven a tractor well knows.
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Old 07-05-2015, 11:50 AM   #224
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The bottom line is to drive within the ability of what you are driving. This in most cases means to slow down. If you have never driven down a particular mountain of something similar, you really don't know what you are doing and are at risk for getting in a wreck while towing. I would gradually face larger hills and mountains as I got more experience. Understanding some physics, like you want the trailer to brake first and not push the rear of the tow vehicle. No matter what you are driving the trailer if it has enough momentum, it will push your tow vehicle and probably jackknife. Once this happens, the chances of even an experience driver recovering is small. Yeah, if you are on a straight away, you might have a chance of recovering by punching the throttle and applying the trailer brakes. Now if you are already going down a hill on a curve too fast, you are screwed. Panic braking causes a lot of problems towing when it would not if you were solo. High profile high center of gravity is a factor when you are already sideways. It does not mean a thing if you don't put yourself in a situation where it is a factor. My Excursion is not going to turn over going down the road at a reasonable speed while pointing forward. I am sure that if it gets sideways, it will roll but by then you are going to be in a wreck no matter what. It is just a matter if you will be wheels down when it all ends.

For instance, if I am riding a motorcycle in the dirt, using the back brake before the front is the thing to do, on the street, the same tactics will get you in a wreck when you lock the back wheel and lay the bike down. Gentle braking, slower speeds, lower gears and don't ride the brakes all the way down the mountain if you want to have them work at the bottom. Pull over and stop if you can't keep your cool and let the brakes cool off. Most trailer accidents are not so much the speed but panic braking when you are going too fast. Most of the time the speed would not kill you but the sudden braking will. This comes back to if you are not going too fast you don't need to panic brake.

Perry
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