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Old 07-21-2004, 07:21 PM   #1
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What size AS can I tow?

I have a 2003 GMC 2500 Yukon XL with quadrasteer, Vortec 6.0, 4:10. Have been reading the forum (very informative/good people) but still have not discerned whether I should just look into purchasing a '25 footer or whether I have enough muscle for a '28 International or even a '30 classic?

Additionally, is there much of a quality difference between the International and the Classic? And if I want to travel on all roads and be allowed in all parks and in Canada/Mexico, am I limited to a trailer length?

Thanks in advance.

Conrad
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Old 07-21-2004, 07:33 PM   #2
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What size AS can I tow?

Greetings Conrad!

Welcome to the Forums!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Publium
I have a 2003 GMC 2500 Yukon XL with quadrasteer, Vortec 6.0, 4:10. Have been reading the forum (very informative/good people) but still have not discerned whether I should just look into purchasing a '25 footer or whether I have enough muscle for a '28 International or even a '30 classic?

Additionally, is there much of a quality difference between the International and the Classic? And if I want to travel on all roads and be allowed in all parks and in Canada/Mexico, am I limited to a trailer length?

Thanks in advance.

Conrad
In regard to what Airstream products that your tow rig can handle, the first thing that needs to be determined is the manufacturers' trailer tow rating. This information should be on the window sticker as well as in the owners' manual. With this information, you can consult the Airstream Weights and Measures page to determine which trailers fit within that rating - - be sure to use the GVWR rather than the Empty Weight for this purpose (the newer coaches are listed at the bottom of the file in the link above). Most on the forum suggest loading the tow vehicle to no more than 80% to at most 90% of its rated capacity - - I prefer to stay below 80% as I fequently tow in the mountains. I have been very satified with the longevity of my Suburban thus far - - 133,000 miles and no significant repairs other than to the Automatic Four Wheel Drive System (and it seems that these have been unrelated to use patterns according to my mechanic).

Since my coaches are Vintage models, I will leave that part of your question to Forum members experienced with the late model coaches.

Good luck with your search for the ideal coach!

Kevin
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1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 07-21-2004, 08:14 PM   #3
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Thanks Kevin,

My tow vehicle is in Florida while I'm in Los Angeles. Due to the quadrasteer, the 6.0 and the 4:10 differential, I can tow 9,300#. Now most recent models of ASs in the 28 to 30 foot range have a GVWR of 8,300# and some of the very new models at (28 or 30 feet)now topping at 8,700#.

From reading this forum, I know there are more elaborate calculations, including using CAT scales, but, in general, do you believe that a tow vehicle that has the capacity to tow 9,300# can safely tow a trailer with a GVWR of 8,300. I realize it does fall short of the 20% rule, but I thought there may be other factors (its a "burb").
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Old 07-21-2004, 08:30 PM   #4
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What size AS can I tow?

Greetings Conrad!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Publium
Thanks Kevin,

My tow vehicle is in Florida while I'm in Los Angeles. Due to the quadrasteer, the 6.0 and the 4:10 differential, I can tow 9,300#. Now most recent models of ASs in the 28 to 30 foot range have a GVWR of 8,300# and some of the very new models at (28 or 30 feet)now topping at 8,700#.

From reading this forum, I know there are more elaborate calculations, including using CAT scales, but, in general, do you believe that a tow vehicle that has the capacity to tow 9,300# can safely tow a trailer with a GVWR of 8,300. I realize it does fall short of the 20% rule, but I thought there may be other factors (its a "burb").
I will preface this by saying that I am somewhat of a "Packrat", and generally have my coaches loaded very near the GVWR. This Suburban is my third relatively recent tow vehicle - - '84 Jeep Grand Wagoneer (loaded to 90% of factory trailer tow rating), '95 Chevrolet K1500 Z71 Club Cab (loaded to 99% of factory trailer tow rating), '99 K2500 Suburban (loaded to 62% of factory trailer tow rating). I have had the most pleasure towing with the Suburban, but my measure is the performance when towing through the Eisenhower Tunnel on I-70 - - if the tow vehicle can't maintain at least 50 MPH when pulling the grade it soon finds its way to the used vehicle dealer. The '84 Jeep and the '99 Suburban both rated as keepers with this test - - the '95 Chevrolet met the used vehicle dealer upon return from its first trip to the Rocky Mountains with the Overlander. Only the '95 Chevrolet failed to make it well past 100,000 miles while in my possession - - the Suburban now has 131,000 miles, and I expect it to exceed 300,000 miles before trade-in time.

If the vast majority of your towing is in level areas or areas with modest grades something around 90% of rated trailer tow capacity should still give adequate performance with a margin of safety. I would be a bit concerned about exceeding 90% of trailer tow capacity if much mountainous travel is anticipated.

Good luck with your research!

Kevin
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Kevin D. Allen
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AIR #827
1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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