Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 06-07-2008, 06:39 AM   #1
2 Rivet Member
 
toddnich's Avatar
 
2007 28' Safari SE
Westlake , Ohio
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 34
Update: Durango and 28' Safari

I shared with you all in the spring my concerns with towing our new a/s with our 2006 durango. it's a subject of much debate, whether these new-breed mid sized suv's can really tow a heavy load. the durango is advertised to tow 8950 lbs, so let's see:

Weighed everything before packing up.

Tow Vehicle & 3/4 tank gas 6020* (GVWR 6750)
Trailer 5260 (GVWR 7300)
GCW 11280 (GCWR 14000)

*Bought a used Hensley Hitch, which added considerably to tongue weight.

Still well over 2500 lbs to play with. I don't plan to push that number, however.

Added wife, small kids, and some gear. Didn't weigh again. I know how much they weigh, and the gear was all laid out before packing, maybe 300 lbs. tops.

Now, the bottom line:

I know this is not the greatest setup in the world, but it worked surprisingly well, and the Durango is a vehicle we can use for the 99% of the miles we drive while not towing. The trailer has absolutely no sway at all, and the addition of a Prodigy brake controller did wonders. The major issue is that we will be driving near the max weight of the tow vehicle, but should not exceed it.

Never felt under-powered, not for a minute. Some slight "porpoising" on hills (heavy vehicle). Looking at adding springs to stiffen up the ride. Anyone who knows about this, let me know. I know you can't use them to expect to exceed GVWR.

And, by the way, I got 15 miles per gallon towing on the highway at 55-60 mph. That's right, 15 mpg. WOW!
__________________

__________________
toddnich is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2008, 09:07 AM   #2
4 Rivet Member
 
tlavergne's Avatar
 
1978 28' Ambassador
Kenton , Ohio
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 457
Very interesting. I think I will be looking for a new tow vehicle in the next year or two. We have a 1999 3/4 ton Suburban that gets 10mpg whether I am towing or not. We only use it to tow. It is great to tow with but it would be nice to have a vehicle that we can tow with and use as a daily driver. Keep us informed on what you think as you drive your set-up. That fuel mileage on a gas vehicle is great.
Tom
__________________

__________________
tlavergne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2008, 09:22 AM   #3
4 Rivet Member
 
SilverCottage's Avatar
 
2007 27' Safari FB SE
LONDON , ON
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 262
We've put about 9,000 miles on our Durango Ltd with towing package. 5.7 Hemi, 3.93 axle, Reese Dual CAM-HP hitch towing our 2007 27FB. We usually have 2 adults and 2 teenagers.

We have been to Newfoundland with its many hills and crosswinds and it never felt unsafe to me. On a recent trip to the Smoky Mtns, we just stayed in the right lane at 55-60 and it handled the hills on I-75 fine. Mileage with mid-grade gas was 11.5 to 13 mpg.

I would have no problem recommending this combination to someone.
__________________
SilverCottage is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2008, 09:23 AM   #4
4 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
holland , Michigan
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 436
Images: 1
I thought you would be suprised how well the new gassers are and no tow vehicle is perfect. The 28 is a great balance of size and weight. We love ours.

As for changing the suspension in any way I would be careful. You may want to start by changing the stock shocks to a heavier brand. I am sure some on the forum will have ideas on this. Anyway your story is like mine, a box stock 08 f150 set up for towing and just does the job. I get by with e85 now running well over 1.50/gallon less than diesel currently and more in some areas. Good luck.
__________________
safari 28 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2008, 07:07 PM   #5
4 Rivet Member
 
tlavergne's Avatar
 
1978 28' Ambassador
Kenton , Ohio
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 457
Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverCottage View Post
Mileage with mid-grade gas was 11.5 to 13 mpg.
What kind of mileage do you get when not towing?
Tom
__________________
tlavergne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2008, 09:39 PM   #6
Well Preserved

 
1993 21' Sovereign
Colfax , North Carolina
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 20,193
Quote:
Originally Posted by safari 28
As for changing the suspension in any way I would be careful. You may want to start by changing the stock shocks to a heavier brand. I am sure some on the forum will have ideas on this.
I would take a look at Bilstein or Koni shocks. They are much better than stock, they may wear out, but I have never seen a broken one.
__________________
Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy, and taste good with ketchup.
Terry
overlander63 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2008, 10:33 PM   #7
4 Rivet Member
 
SilverCottage's Avatar
 
2007 27' Safari FB SE
LONDON , ON
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 262
Quote:
Originally Posted by tlavergne View Post
What kind of mileage do you get when not towing?
Tom
At 60 mph with cruise...21-22 mpg
__________________
SilverCottage is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2008, 02:13 AM   #8
_
 
. , .
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 8,812
Quote:
Originally Posted by toddnich View Post
...Weighed everything before packing up...
good info but a couple of items aren't clear...

-were the weights taken while hitched up?

as i understand it the hitch weight doesn't count as tongue weight, after the w/d bars are tensioned...

but it does count against tv payload along with the tongue weight.

-what tires are on the suv? as in load rating?

clearly the haha helps with the wheelbase issue which is 'worth' the weight added.

-are u traveling with/without water and lp?

cheers
2air'
__________________
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.
2airishuman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2008, 03:17 AM   #9
uwe
418
 
uwe's Avatar
 
2007 25' Safari FB SE
1958 22' Flying Cloud
1974 29' Ambassador
Yucca Valley , California
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: 1963 26' Overlander
Posts: 4,767
Images: 41
Send a message via Skype™ to uwe
Quote:
Originally Posted by toddnich View Post
Trailer 5260 (GVWR 7300)
that seems a tad light for a loaded 28ft safari
__________________
Uwe
www.area63productions.com
uwe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2008, 03:53 AM   #10
Rivet Master
 
Journalist's Avatar
 
1969 25' Tradewind
Irmo , South Carolina
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 744
Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63 View Post
I would take a look at Bilstein or Koni shocks. They are much better than stock, they may wear out, but I have never seen a broken one.
I'll have to send you some pics of the Bilstein off of my Scirocco that decided to gut itself. It pretty much just puked all the seals and guts out and they slid down the shaft of the strut in a sticky oily mess. Incident didn't sour me on their product at all. Bilstein replaced it free of charge under their lifetime warranty. I highly recommend them simply based on their customer service. I now have Bilsteins on all four of my VWs and I'm looking to pick up a set for my truck very soon. They tend to ride firmer than most, which is a good thing for the OP's porpoising issue.
__________________
AIR #8891
Unrestored 1969 25' Tradewind
Overkill Tow Vehicle of the Year Award:
2001 GMC 3500 4x4 Dually 6.6L Duramax
Journalist is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2008, 08:50 AM   #11
2 Rivet Member
 
toddnich's Avatar
 
2007 28' Safari SE
Westlake , Ohio
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 34
i was hooked up when i weighed everything.

the trailer was basically empty, and the w/d setup was transferring tongue weight to the vehicle, which is my explanation for the light trailer. the ubw is 5580. i'm guessing that the 800 lbs. that my t/v took (scale weight - curb weight) came from the weight of the trailer re-distributed to the vehicle.

i've been told that the combined weight is the big number, so i'm comfortable with what the scales told me. and the drive.

thanks for the info about the shocks. i will look into it.
__________________
toddnich is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2008, 09:02 AM   #12
2 Rivet Member
 
toddnich's Avatar
 
2007 28' Safari SE
Westlake , Ohio
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 34
the load rating on the tires is 2205 per tire. that's 4410 per axle, right? it seems to me that i should be well within what i'm doing. i've been told that i should upgrade from P to LT tires, load range from D to E.?? I'm not sure about tires. Thoughts?

traveling without water, with LP.

i think i could comfortably add maybe 40 gallons of water, if needed.
__________________
toddnich is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2008, 09:35 AM   #13
Mad1
 
1989 29' Excella
Dallas , Texas
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 33
Images: 2
Hi,

I tow an '89 28ft Excella with an '04 Nissan Titan, like you I
run close to the TV max load. I highly recommend Timbrens
"suspension enhancement system" rubber aux springs. I changed tires and shocks but the big leap forward in towing
handling came from the Timbrens.

Vehicle Suspension Kits - Timbren Suspension Enhancement Systems

Steve and LuLu the Yorky urban camping int he Dallas Design District
__________________
madrone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2008, 02:36 PM   #14
_
 
. , .
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 8,812
ok todd that clears up my confusions (for today)...

and agree the gcwr is the big number (no disrespecting payload of course) to watch.

porpoising happens and seems to be more a function of wheelbase/axle spacing and specific sections of roadway...

IF it only happens in limited areas, versus EVERY hill or valley i'd be less inclined to tweak things...

the bilstein or koni shocks are a really nice upgrade but dealing with the tires first is usually a better return on $$...

those few here who have moved UP to E rated tires report many towing benefits...

it is pretty easy to raise the pressures for towing and get full benefit of the sidewalls, then dial 'em back for passenger use.

i'm assuming u have the 1000 lb bars for the haha?

hey how about a pix or 2 of your rig, it's gotta look impressive with that long trailer on the tail of the durango...

i always travel with water, it is pretty useful stuff.

cheers
2air'
__________________

__________________
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.
2airishuman is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
New Airstreamer Safari 28' safarijim Member Introductions 6 01-29-2007 12:24 AM
2006 Safari 28' SE kamadeca 2006 Safari SE 0 08-25-2005 12:53 PM
28' Safari and Chevy Tahoe Silvercamper Tow Vehicles 11 08-15-2005 08:18 PM
'03 Safari 28' Slide-Out Rivetedude 2003 Safari 0 07-03-2005 12:36 PM
New 28' Safari ?! darkStar Our Community 1 07-15-2003 02:02 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:14 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.