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Old 07-30-2004, 10:29 AM   #1
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Question Safari 25W

Hello All!

I own a Ford E-150 conversion van with the 5.4L and 3.53 rear. It also has air bags in the rear with weight dist. and sway control. (towing a 28' sqare trailer)

Does anyone tow a 25W or 25SS with a similar configuration? How does it do? We travel on both flat land and through the NC Mountains.



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Old 07-30-2004, 10:51 AM   #2
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2004 25' Safari
. , Illinois
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Well, I don't have a pickup, but I have a 5.7L sedan (5300lbs GVWR) w/ 3.73s. The Safari SS rings in about 6300lbs fully loaded. When the winds come, I get pushed around a bit. Hills are not the most fun exp either.

The engine is up to it, but frankly, the 1/2 ton trans mated to the existing body isn't very good. I am sure Ford is similar. I know this is not comparing apples to apples, but I would suggest strongly a 3/4 ton. Pops has a 6.0L 2500 and it does a great job with his 24' SOB. He's got 3.73s in his.

I suppose you could get by with a 1/2 ton, but I really think you'll have a much better exp w/ a 3/4 ton. If you were talking a 16', 19' Safari/Bambi or even a 22', I'd say you'd be good, but the 25 footers start to get into what I would consider a need for a bit more than what the 1/2 tons should do...not to say they can't do it, but in my book there is a difference between can and should. I think at 25' (speaking as an owner of one) you are at that it can, but should it, particularly when going through mountains, or hills.

Just my .02

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Old 07-30-2004, 11:01 AM   #3
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1993 25' Excella
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We tow our 25' Classic (about 6400 lbs) with our 97 F150 with 5.4L, 3.53 rear (I think) and airbags and it's marginal when we're in the mountains. We have invested in a Hensley Hitch which has taken care of the sway (all of it, really!) but in the near future we will be upgrading to a F250.
Michelle & Leon
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Old 07-30-2004, 12:25 PM   #4
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Your engine in a standard van would be adequate, but coupled with a 3.53 rear end it is a bit long geared for the available torque. And as a conversion van it likely is already near gross weight with a normal load of passengers - add the tongue weight of the trailer, and the stuff most of us load up when we go and you are going to be seriously over the gross weight limit for the chassis. And then there are the air bags. They will fight the spring bars on any load leveling hitch, preventing the necessary transfer of weight to the front axle.

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Old 07-30-2004, 02:59 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by j54mark
And then there are the air bags. They will fight the spring bars on any load leveling hitch, preventing the necessary transfer of weight to the front axle.

I was wondering about the air suspension in the Expy. It auto levels and I thought there was a conflict with the Reese WD hitch. It could be turned off but I never did.

No air leveler in the 2500 Burb 7400. Just stiff 'nuf springs to make one think of pulling a couple out to smooth the ride. I really don't need all that support. Putting the 6-700 lbs tongue weight on it hardly phases the rear height.

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Old 07-31-2004, 09:18 PM   #6
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We tow a 1959 Tradewind (a 24 footer) with our Ford E150. Recently, we traveled Hwy 101 from our home in Paso Robles CA to Eureka in Northern Ca. There's a fair number of mountians, crosswind and winding two laners. We picked up my folks near Santa Rosa (for a total of four adult, one child and two dogs!)
This was our first major trip with the van and trailer and must say I was very pleased with the way the van handled the grades, the winding roads, and cross winds. Although I didn't speed , I was passing diesel pusher motor homes and fifth wheels with no problem.
I added a 'Helwig' swaybar and a set "Supersprings," which provide excellent handling and load carrying capacity.

The only thing I don't like about the van is the wimpy mirrors. The van has the "tow package" but I guess the mirrors are extra. I've tried two differant add on mirrors but had to return them all because they wouldn't stay on. We're going to bite the bullet and go through ford for a set of "superduty" type tow mirrors.

Our van as equiped, is rated to tow up to 6,900lbs.
The Econoline Van is niether PC NOR trendy... I guess that's why I like It

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Old 07-31-2004, 11:15 PM   #7
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2004 25' Safari
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Although I can see your rig works well, your '59 Tradewind I don't believe is near the weights of what app was talking about. It appears that the coach in question would be a new(er) 25' Safari which would behave vastly different than your setup.
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Old 08-01-2004, 04:03 AM   #8
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2005 25' Safari
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We have an '04 25' Sarari (twin). I have had 3 (2 Chevy-1 Ford) 1/2 ton tow vehicles before-not with this trailer. IMHO: Your tow vehicle is "adequate", with the 'full-monty' trans cooler, lg cap radiator, etc. As mentioned in another post, I also feel the 3:53's are 'long' for towing, especially up-hill(s). You can probably make do with limited use, but if you were going to tow 5-10K mi/yr I think you would be better off with a 3/4 ton tow vehicle.

The thread on "Smaller Tow Vehicles" (recent) could make for some interesting reading!!. Some day I'll figure out how to do the 'link imbeding' , but not tonight, sorry...

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