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Old 04-17-2015, 12:53 PM   #15
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1996 25' Excella
Tillsonburg , Ontario
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I would have tried to pull your trailer with my 03 4.7 Dakota, and it has a 3.53 rear end. With 4WD your drive train is already a bit tougher and geared lower than that.

When I bought this truck our AS dealer said it would pull any trailer we cared to buy from them. I would have been a bit reticent to try a 34 mind you! We routionely take our '96 25 classic over the Top of Lake Superior...lots of 7% grades.

As someone noted, the Hensley gives a bit of an advantage since it extends the tongue length. I found that too with a new Hensley

I would try the vehicle for a few days on some really hilly country. Watch your Tranny Temp if it doesn't have a cooler. We installed 22,000 Btu on our Dakota when brand new.

Manufacturer ratings are not the best indicator of capability. They worry about liability and warranties. Talk to Either of the two Andys

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Old 04-17-2015, 01:41 PM   #16
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[QUOTE=JCWDCW;1609074]I would have tried to pull your trailer with my 03 4.7 Dakota, and it has a 3.53 rear end. With 4WD your drive train is already a bit tougher and geared lower than that.

Really? You actually would have tried pulling a 28' AS with a tongue weight in excess of 1300lbs? Did you have the intention of towing with two wheels? Your front end is going to be off the ground. Let's not be foolish here.
You call that safe? Sorry bud. Ima call you out on this one. That's NOT acceptable, and you KNOW it.

Please do not put misleading statements on here lending others to believe that the vehicle you describe is safe to use on a 28' trailer with a tongue weight greater than 1300lbs. You're obviously trolling, and try to stir the pot.

Safety, first & foremost. Your statement is 101% NOT safe.

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Old 04-17-2015, 03:56 PM   #17
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I started with a 1/2 ton Chevrolet with 327 and our first 23' Airstream. OK for flatland of KS but go in the low hills around Rapid City and the Chevy said "go ahead west without me, I'm staying here". Now have an F250 with 6.7 diesel and have uptraded to a 2' FB AS. Short answer for me was have enough truck that the trailer is never tempted to "bully" it. The F250 fills that bill. Engine is optional but the 6.7 hauls over Colorados highest mountain passes at highway speeds. With the ol' Chevy, love it as I did, would have had to change zip codes by now.
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Old 04-17-2015, 03:57 PM   #18
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Germantown , Tennessee
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"Paid for is always good. I would try towing it with the Sequioa, but that is some serious tongue weight. Maybe you can reduce tongue weight by having less batteries or relocating the batteries. Good weight distribution will help, but I don't know if weight distribution will transfer all that weight."

I've already towed with it a couple times now. I've taken it about 500 miles down to Grayton Beach once and down through the MS Delta to Belzoni (hometown) a couple of weekends ago. It pulls fairly well. The trip to Grayton was good but going up and down the hills on 78 and 45 on the eastern side of Mississippi gave it a good little workout.

Oddly enough, the trip through the Delta was tougher. We were going into 30mph winds all the way from Memphis to Leland on 61 and it started to act a little odd right as we turned onto 82. That game me a good reason to stop and let the kids visit the Jim Henson museum there in Leland for a bit while I gave her a rest before continuing. The drive back without the headwind was uneventful.

Stopping leaves a bit to be desired. And I worry a little about going up or coming down any long grades since there just isn't that type of road to test it out on around here. I'm going to look into the possibility of beefing up the brakes and maybe adding a trans temp gauge if I keep her. As far as handling goes, it drives straight and true.

The more I think about going to a 3/4 the more I'm hesitant about it from the perspective of vehicle size. I know I'm a little against the norm here but I'd rather tow with the shortest possible wheelbase that still feels safe. And it's been nice being able to squeeze the trailer into spaces with the shorter wheelbase of the Sequoia. (I watched several longer wheel base trucks try over and over to squeeze their trailers into spaces that I easily managed on the Grayton trip.)

I'm hoping this weekend to see what I can do about reducing the tongue weight. I've already reduced it 100# by moving the two euro recliners from the front to right over the front axle. The previous owner had JC take out the front sofa and added the recliners and some nice storage extended from the kitchen. That storage must way a ton, because it appears my tongue weight is really heavy compared to others. (Again, I am including the weight of the Hensley there, is that correct?) Removing two more of the batteries should reduce it by another 100# and get me to 1140#, which isn't great but seems to be a lot better.

I like the idea of looking at the Tundra. And my dream vehicle is a Land Cruiser, which seems like it would be a decent fit as well if I could find a well-used one with the 5.7.
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Old 04-17-2015, 05:04 PM   #19
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The hitch weight is really interesting. You are actually in the range of my 30' Slide out so I'm assuming those batteries are the culprit. One of the things I found out was that my GM factory receiver which was part of the tow package was only rated for 1000 lb. I replaced that receiver with new receiver rated at 1,400 lbs. If you truly are going to tow with that hitch weight, be sure to check the rating of the receiver on your tow vehicle. It will be stamped on it or there will be a sticker with it's dead weight and weight distributing limitations.

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Old 04-17-2015, 06:46 PM   #20
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Well, I am still saving up for my AS. So I haven't towed with either vehicle.

But I have owned 2 Suburbans, and now drive a 5.8L V8 Tundra 4x4 crew cab.

I feel the Tundra is an easier vehicle to drive as a daily driver in city traffic. It is a lighter feel on the gas pedal, and the steering is easier too. I get 15 MPG around town.

The suburban does let you have seating for more people, and having that third seat can be nice for long road trips. (one kid per seat).

If you have any potential for bringing a dog along, get the suburban. If not, I think you would be happy with either.

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Old 04-17-2015, 09:19 PM   #21
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Greenwood , Mississippi
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Belzoni? Are you serious? You know we live in Greenwood? We drove all over Morgan City, Sidon, Quito, Berclair, and Itta Bena last Saturday- a little trip down Memory Lane.
Right now we are at Lake Tiak O'Khata in Louisville, MS. Next weekend we will be at George Payne Cossar State Park at Oakland, MS.
I tow with a 5.7 Tundra. It does good. Maybe you could get a newer Sequoia with the 5.7.

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Old 04-18-2015, 10:12 AM   #22
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I agree about the TW comments. I towed an 11K lb. car trailer with a 1500 lb. TW with my 2010 Ford F250 diesel for 3 years. The hitch on the Ford was rated for 1250 lbs. with weight distribution and I was never completely comfortable about it.

The 300 ft-lbs of torque should handle the trailer well, especially with a good hitch (which you have). I would also suggest fixing the tongue weight before buying a different truck or SUV.

- Wayne
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Old 04-24-2015, 03:11 PM   #23
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1996 25' Excella
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Reply to FishinHatteras

just coming back to this thread..To be clear in 03 if we could have found one we would have purchased an older 28 which was somewhat lighter, but Andy was definite the Dakota could handle a 30 ft. and at that time CAN-AM RV had just produced a video using a Chrysler Sedan pulling a 30 ft AS through a Slalom course to demonstrate the stability of the Hensley Hitch. We met members in Thunder Bay last year who pull their 28ft with a Dodge Magnum.
And this whole issue was covered back in 2011 and 2012 on this forum when a couple of members asked about their Dakota as a TV. One member back then was pulling a 34' with their 4.7 Dakota.
Last year when I was having my Hitch beefed up at CAN-AM RV they had just hooked up a 3 year old 30 ft to a new Touarag and after a 20 minute shakedown drive he left for home in Northern Ontario.

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It looks like they have a Jaguar on a 34. It has some interesting comments about wear and tear and what capacity the TV can actually accomplish. There are also some feedback comments about braking capacity of the TV. You still need to be able to stop the rig if trailer brakes fail which would be my major concern. Interestingly the Chrysler Sedan has 12" discs front and rear which is more than most half-tons, a point made to some doubters in our Unit.

We are pulling a 7200 Lb trailer with hitch weight in the 800 lb range, which is way more than the rated capcity of the box, never mind out at the bumper. With the Hensley I find no difference than my old '89 AS which was closer to 650 lbs on the hitch. I had a couple of emergencies with that one after being cut off in Texas and the rig was quite stable. We did not have a Hensley at that time.
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Old 04-24-2015, 08:11 PM   #24
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To the OP, the Sequiona is a very capable tow vehicle. It know two people who tow comparable trailers to your own with zero issues. One of them is on his way to Alaska as we speak, with his young family of four and fully loaded.

If it's paid for, I'd keep it.

Your tongue weight is too high, but it is too high for almost any vehicle. Four batteries at the front will do that for you, but that's an easy fix to get right. To give you a comparison, the tongue weight on my fully loaded 34' is 850lbs before weight distribution.

As far as brakes are concerned, it's important to remember that the demand on the braking system is linear with increased mass, but exponential with increased speed.

Simply put, if I double the weight of a vehicle, I also double the demand on the brakes. But if I double the speed, I quadruple the demands I make on the brakes.

Trucks tend to have a lower top speed than cars, vans and SUVs but are of course heavier. If you run the numbers, you'll find that the mass and momentum that the brakes are designed to deal with is often higher in vehicle that isn't a truck.
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Old 04-24-2015, 08:40 PM   #25
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With that much weight I wouldn't look at anything less than a 3/4 ton pickup, and you don't want to be under powered,
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Old 04-25-2015, 12:57 PM   #26
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i am sure CANAM does fine work converting 'ordinary' vehicles into TVs. that said, WHY??? a proper TV is going to already have suspension designed for the task, appropriate coolers for the engine and transmission, a fuel capacity appropriate for towing and the ability to carry the 'stuff' we all pack along besides the trailer itself.

so while it may be possible to convert the old family sedan the question is why would anyone wan to do that in the first place.
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Old 04-25-2015, 02:06 PM   #27
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What TV would you buy with these considerations?

My TV fits in the garage, gets 24 MPG without the trailer - and we drive a lot without the AS -, is very comfortable as daily and long distance driver and I do not want, nor do I have a place for a third vehicle. Oh, and I'll do ANY safety test at the track with my TV/AS/hitch/sway control/brakes/controller setup vs a big trailer pulled by a big pickup. So if you want to talk safety, let's go see for ourselves who has the safer rig...

I think people's preferences should be respected here.

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Old 04-25-2015, 04:07 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by TCwheels View Post

I think people's preferences should be respected here.

WBCCI #7246 Michigan Unit,Texas Hill Country Unit (associate member), AIR #91367a

do what you wish, that approach simply makes zero sense to me. my PU gets 20 mpg at highway speeds when not towing so not that much difference. i also pack along a generator, chairs, tools, chains, jack, ice chests and a bunch of other stuff in the PU bed. all of that adds weight. i doubt seriously if your choice of TV can match that carrying capacity, but as i said, do as you wish, i simply don't understand this mindset.

so according to you, if i question this i 'don't respect' your choice, hum!

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