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Old 10-01-2004, 07:31 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Minnie's Mate
... BTW, she bakes with her left foot. So you can visualize what happened with her feet.
Yeah! burned toes Why doesn't she use a potholder?

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Old 10-01-2004, 12:20 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Minnie's Mate
......BTW, she bakes with her left foot.
I have a friend who is a driving instructor, she once said that to cure left foot braking - have the driver remove left shoe and drive that way - she won't like the feel of the pedal on her delicate tootsies. If that fails put a couple of short tacks, face up, on the brake pedal!
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Old 10-01-2004, 12:24 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tcwilliams
Yeah! burned toes Why doesn't she use a potholder?

Sorry, I meant brakes with her left feet. But you knew that.
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Old 10-06-2004, 01:35 PM   #18
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Minnie's Mate, did anyone answer your questions?

regarding tow vehicles and hitches? If you are going to get the 30' trailer, I am not sure you really need the Power Stroke diesel to pull it. While the Ford 250 Power Stroke is a wonderful vehicle, it may be a little bit of over-kill. You can pull stumps with that thing! I pull a 31' Sovereign with a GMC 8.1 Vortec, and a Reese Dual Cam hitch. The truck has plenty of power and the hitch is exceptional. I'm not going to argue the merits of Ford versus GMC, as I've had both and love both. Ditto on the Reese versus the Hensley. I've had both hitches at one time or another. The Hensley is exceptional, but you aren't going to see that much difference in performance if you go with the less-expensive Reese. If you are in a position where you can go, go, go, constantly and far away, buy what you feel you must, but don't let anyone tell you the larger Ford 250 gas engine isn't going to provide enough truck for a 30' Airstream. I know better. And, if you've been following gas prices, diesel isn't much of a bargain anymore.
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Old 10-06-2004, 05:14 PM   #19
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Get the 19'. You won't be sorry. As stated above, it is a long-term purchase. I just spent a month in mine and am ready to full-time! Get the full LS package if you can. The upgrades are well worth it. Consider the sofa option. I got it in leather and love it. Nice place to lounge and watch TV and it makes a great bed, I would think better than the dinette. It is 7' long.

Good luck!
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Old 10-06-2004, 05:48 PM   #20
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I'd go with a 19' at least with your family.
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Old 10-08-2004, 03:09 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joe hall
regarding tow vehicles and hitches? If you are going to get the 30' trailer, I am not sure you really need the Power Stroke diesel to pull it. While the Ford 250 Power Stroke is a wonderful vehicle, it may be a little bit of over-kill. You can pull stumps with that thing! I pull a 31' Sovereign with a GMC 8.1 Vortec, and a Reese Dual Cam hitch. The truck has plenty of power and the hitch is exceptional. I'm not going to argue the merits of Ford versus GMC, as I've had both and love both. Ditto on the Reese versus the Hensley. I've had both hitches at one time or another. The Hensley is exceptional, but you aren't going to see that much difference in performance if you go with the less-expensive Reese. If you are in a position where you can go, go, go, constantly and far away, buy what you feel you must, but don't let anyone tell you the larger Ford 250 gas engine isn't going to provide enough truck for a 30' Airstream. I know better. And, if you've been following gas prices, diesel isn't much of a bargain anymore.
Thanks for responding to my parallel questions. I realize a powerstroke diesel is overkill for this size trailer, but I have kept my current truck for nearly 10 years and have taken care of it and it has taken care of me. I do plan on using my next truck to tow often and think the diesel would probably hold up a little better than gas. In addition I think the MPG's will be better. Maybe not enough to off-set the extra cost of the engine, but it will make me feel better about more frequent trips with the trailer in tow. This will also serve as my daily commuter. I travel 50 miles/day. So fuel efficiency is important.

I really like Fords. My father always drove Ford trucks so I guess its in my genes. Unfortunately, Ford doesn't offer anything larger than a 5.4L in an F-150, or F-250 for that matter unless you get the V-10. I have been told the V-10 really sucks in fuel economy, pardon the pun. I also want the heavier transmission and brakes found in the F-250. The only other option is the diesel. Believe me, I'd rather put that $5,100 into something other than my tow vehicle. In fact, I had planned to purchase a Lexus RX 400 SUV (hybrid) next year until we decided to buy an Airstream. The F-250 Lariat diesel crew cab will cost more!

One piece of advice my Dad's uncle always gave and it always proved to be true in the past: "always get the biggest engine offered and it will always hold up better because it will always be in less of a strain." The piece of mind of having that extra power in reserve in the N. GA mountains on week end camping trips and not being relegated to the slow lane on the interstate going up slight hills is worth it when averaged over 10-12 years of towing.

We also plan on annual two week trips that will include trips to New England and Nova Scotia and to the dessert S. W. and Yellowstone and the Rockies and to the West Coast so this truck will get plenty of opportunity for wear and using that power that is held in reserve. I'll get off my soap box.

As far as hitches, I am totally open. I have no clue there. I have never heard anyone say the Hensley was a waist of money or they wished they hadn't bought one, but I have never heard that said about the Reese either. I have never towed anything except boats (>20') so I have never used a weight distribution system or anti-sway. My Dad certainly believed in both.

I once towed a short U-haul that had not been properly loaded with an empty S-10 in the rain. It swayed when cars passed! I never want to have that experience again.

Over a possibly 30 year towing future, the cost of a premium hitch system is a sound investment in my opinion. That is why I want a good value. I don't want to spend money unnecessarily, but I don't want to be penny wise and pound foolish either. I want camping and RV'ing to be a total enjoyable experience for me as well as the rest of the family. My wife is a teacher. We will take these two week trips in the summer when she and the boys are out of school. I will have to go back to work at the end of the summer trip...probably the day after we get home. I don't want to be totally exhausted from battling with the trailer for two weeks and feeling more stressed when I go back to work than I did when I left. If I do, I'm afraid I'll be the only one not enjoying camping and will loose interest after a few trips. This is not what I want to happen after spending nearly $60,000 on an Airstream.

This is why I look to those of you who have experience in these matters and can advise what is the most cost effective hitch system. Like I said before, there are other places that extra money can go, but if it would improve my enjoyment of camping and help insure that we have many trips together while the kids are young enough to want to go with Mom and Dad, then I'm for it
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Old 10-08-2004, 05:30 PM   #22
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Wink Powerstrokes & Reese Dual Cam

Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnie's Mate
BTW, we are planning the purchase of our first travel trailer, too. We have decided on an Airstream Safari 30' because of the bunk beds. We have two young boys, currently 4 & 7, and don't want the hastle of making a bed every night and un-making it every morning...that's not how we want to spend our vacations. We also want them to have their own beds when they get older. We also want the option of one or maybe two of their friends coming along for a week end when they get older. On those occassions making the dinnet into a bed won't be such a biggie. Also, the dinnets and gouchos usually are at best 3/4 beds not real doubles.

I currently have a Ford F-150 and it will be time to replace it next year. That is what I am waiting on as far as ordering my AS. I have decided to bite the bullet and get the F-250 crew cab in 2006 with the powerstroke diesel so there will be plenty of towing power.

I know for this size of trailer, even an Airstream, will require a sway system of some sort. I am leaning toward a Hensley. It is expensive, but I haven't heard anyone say they thought it was waisted money. I will be the sole driver of this rig and as our children get older, we will take longer trips out west to such destinations as Bryce Canyon, Grand Canyon, Red Rock, Rockies, West Coast, etc. A lot of time for me behind the wheel so I want it to be as easy and as little stress by the end of the day as possible so I can enjoy the vacation, too. Unlike my wife who is a teacher, I will have to return to work at the end of the vacation without a vacation from the vacation to rest up! So for me, it will be worth it.

If anyone out there thinks there is a better alternative or better value, please let me know.

What about the Reese dual cam? Others?

Equilizers? Do either of the named hitches have equilizers built in or are they additions to the hitch? If additions, what is the best brand to get for either of the mentioned hitching systems? Anybody know anything about the "Air Hitch"? Saw it at the RV show in So. Atlanta last week end. Didn't have a chance to ask questions but it looked like more for 5th wheels and commercial rigs.
I pulled my 28 Excella from Alaska to Maine last year with an F-250 Powerstroke (manual tranny) and 3.73 gears. I also used the dual cam anti-sway. The trailer, truck & anti-sway performed amazingly well. In fact, the Excella was flawless. The truck, unfortunately lost clutch hydraulic pressure, say to about 10% just out of Anchorage. Old Cal (worthington) up there actually suggested swapping the whole tranny out, they never even offered to try bleeding it. So, I pulled that trailer and my whole family down the AlCan and shifted clutchless. I did have some ability to shift while rolling, but nothing at all sitting still. Made it all the way to Billings like that. There is a truly wonderful dealer there by the name of Bob Smith motors (Ford). They fixed me up right proper, with a new master cylinder and line. Not a pleasant way to drive, but it is one tough truck.....almost up there with Airstream

The Reese never allowed that trailer to sway, at all. I had headwinds, tailwinds and crosswinds from Alaska to Montana. After that I had semi- winds (tractor trailers), those, I had to get used to. The Reese hitch system always left me feeling like one long continuous unit, rather than something hinged at the middle.

Should you go with a Powerstroke, I'd seriously look at the F-350. It is heavier by about 400lbs (don't hold me to that) and actually rides a tad softer. More importantly, it has 4.10 gears (you can even get 4.30's now). The 4.10's are optional on the F-250. And, the 1-ton is just a few hundred more. I wished for the heavier truck as I also had quite a load in the bed. Mine managed most steep inclines OK, but the 1-tons walked away with heavier loads. Period. Check out http://www.thedieselstop.com/ for all the info you can possibly absorb.

My only dislike to running that diesel is the droning noise all day long Turbo whistle is neat every now and then, but several days in a row wears thin. We were on a timed run, and had very little time for truly enjoying our trip.

I don't have as much long term experience as many others here do, (and I thank all of you for putting out so much information to us all) but thought my road trip in like gear would benefit you.

May all your towing travels be on a gentle downhill

Take Care

LR
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Old 10-08-2004, 06:37 PM   #23
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Go Duramax

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My only dislike to running that diesel is the droning noise all day long Turbo whistle is neat every now and then, but several days in a row wears thin. We were on a timed run, and had very little time for truly enjoying our trip.
No drone. Quieter than my previous 5.3 gas engine at cruising speeds. I can feel the turbo kick in, but I have yet to hear it in 15,000 miles. On fairly level interstates, I run for hours at 1900 RPM and never shift out of OD.

Diesel is pricey right now, but I'll bet that won't last. Someone up there is playing games with diesel prices. Price seems to vary wildly state to state. Last trip, I paid $1.70 in Oklahoma and 5 hours later, I paid $1.86 in Texas. Same brand.
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Old 10-08-2004, 07:57 PM   #24
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Minnie's Mate:

You might try going to http://www.disneycampers.com/RV/RV_Default.htm to compare the different types of hitches that are commonly in use today. This site has pictures and diagrams of the hitches and links to the manufacturers websites.

The Hensley is a great hitch, but there are some negatives: it's heavy, rusts rather quickly, adds additional length to your rig, is difficult for the novice to hitch TV to Airstream (gets easier over time), and can't easily be moved from vehicle to vehicle. Oh, and did I mention price?? $ 3K. I'm not bashing Hensley, these are just some things that a potential buyer should be aware of.

USAToday online ran an interesting article today about vehicle depreciation. It referenced ALG (http://www.alg.com), which showed ratings for all cars and trucks - the big 3 heavy duty trucks all garnered 4 stars. The article stated: ALG's data show that a new diesel truck averages $4,926 more than the same truck with a gas engine. After a year, the diesel's worth $8,098 more than the gas model. After three years, $9,422 more.
Interesting reading.

Bob
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Old 10-08-2004, 08:01 PM   #25
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Diesel is pricey right now, but I'll bet that won't last. Someone up there is playing games with diesel prices. Price seems to vary wildly state to state. Last trip, I paid $1.70 in Oklahoma and 5 hours later, I paid $1.86 in Texas. Same brand.
Time to move out of the north country! I'm paying $2.24 as of yesterday, a full 10 cents more than low octane gas. Hmmmmm.......

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Old 10-09-2004, 06:10 AM   #26
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One more for the Duramax

You should have a look at the Chevy/Duramax.

Awesome truck. I have pulled in N. GA to Black Rock Mountain State Park. What a feeling!

People just stared as we ran up that hill.

I guess I have always liked Chevys, but this is my first deisel, and there is nothing else like it when towing.

I have also noticed a poll on the home page of this site about tow vehicles, and the Chevy/Duramax holds the lead.

Andy
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