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Old 12-29-2014, 02:05 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by Wayward View Post
Right. But by clicking on other 1/2 ton models it looks like tires and gearing are the primary factors there - both of which can be changed to give an extra margin of safety.

For example....... the factory spec'd towing capacity on my base model 1/2 ton truck is only 2000lbs while other models that year went as high as 8800lbs. I found the primary differences were transmission gear ratios, axle ratios and tires. I changed the gearing and tires, and have no issues towing the Airstream whatsoever.

Jumping to a 3/4 ton truck for a few hundred pounds more payload is not something a lot of people want or need to do.
What worked best for us was to ask the dealer to let us hitch up and drive a short distance (for us) to a hilly area test drive ... and a commercial scale. Then you will be armed with the information to make a decision - without the bias introduced by me or others on the various RV forums. We had an F150 (in various trims / models / engines) for almost 50 years. Then came the AS and we were below 45mph on many of our favorite mountain passes ... downhill with the AT was not the same as when "bare" with just a topper. So, we tried out a 3/4 diesel with exhaust brake and for a variety of reasons would not go back. We got more than a few hundred pounds difference in payload !!! (However, although the 3/4 by itself is not a great deal more than the 1/2 base price - model for model, there is a considerable difference in price if you opt for the diesel engine)

Tow capacity and axle ratings aside, we'd prefer the softer ride for the AS provided by a 1/2T, but prefer the safety and allowance for margin of error provided in the 3/4T - PARTICULARLY the axles, exhaust brake, wheels / hubs & bearings, tires, and brake pads. YMMV, however, depending upon your needs and finances. We are fortunate to have another vehicle for running errands around town but the newer diesel's fuel efficiency rivals our jeep that is only a few years old... and, except for parking spot sizing - really like the truck's ease of entry / exit and creature comforts! As I've said before, we were quite happy with the Ram 2500 Cummins UNTIL the EPA mandated recalls; now, we are driving another brand of diesel 3/4 T.
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Old 12-29-2014, 02:41 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by J. Morgan View Post
You might assume that my 5.3 1/2 ton is overloaded and underpowered, but that does not make your assumption correct. (You know It is an assumption right?)

I will grant that my truck wont pull as well as well as the diesels or V10s commonly found in modern trucks, but I can drive from Little Rock AR to Tucson AZ and back and never encounter a hill that will make me drive below 70 MPH.

That is good enough for me.

As far as the overloading goes, with W/D, there is not the slightest chance that my truck has ever even approached an overloaded condition.

Even without W/D my headlights hit the pavement quite well thank you!

Now if I lived in Billings Montana, and I drove the Montana roads often I might see things differently. But I don't.

Climbing an 8% grade south of Globe AZ my low speed was about 37mph.

Kinda slow, but fast enough that there were no big trucks running away from me, on the contrary....

1/2 Ton 4WD Truck, 72 Sovereign Hensley Arrow

Very well said ...but western Montana has even more mountainous terrain! Glad to see that some folks understand our dilemma ... especially on the winding passes where the 18 wheelers are not happy piling up behind an AS going 45 ...
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Old 12-29-2014, 02:42 PM   #59
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Oh Happie Daze....sure am glad I started Stream'n before joining the Circus.

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Old 12-29-2014, 04:27 PM   #60
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Truck and Trailer

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
And here's another tidbit about my rig, I have looked it up by VIN, and it has a max towing capacity of 9600lbs, which technically I am exceeding by up to 1500lbs loaded.

However, if you look up the identical truck on Ram's Towing Capacity Chart, same model, body, be length, gear, 4X4, and engine, it has a max towing capacity of 14,800lbs. No one can tell me why, but I'd like to know.

One is conventional tow and one is 5er. The real limit is still the tires/wheels. DOT cares not at all about things like GVWR. That's the recommendation to operators. Put together by a junior engineer with spreadsheet and an algorithm. Respect the numbers in one sense, but don't be slave to it. The real concern is tire loads. All else is secondary.


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Old 12-29-2014, 04:51 PM   #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slowmover View Post
One is conventional tow and one is 5er. The real limit is still the tires/wheels. DOT cares not at all about things like GVWR. That's the recommendation to operators. Put together by a junior engineer with spreadsheet and an algorithm.


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Uh oh, seems I've made a mistake. Just went back thru the data I printed when I ran the VIN looking for the GCVW rating, couldn't find it, but also noticed the max tow rating is not even listed....it is the GVWR that is listed at 9600lbs. Big difference.

I'm not really worried about it because the truck handles the trailer well, weight tickets say I am well under the GVWR of the truck (9600 and all up and loaded it's at 9280), and well under the GAWR (6020 and all up and loaded it's at 4620).

However, I have never seen any differential statements in any of Dodge Ram's specs, or literature anywhere about conventional vs fifth wheel towing ratings. Where would I find that?
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Old 12-29-2014, 04:55 PM   #62
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The old online towing guide showed it. It was the pin weight, of course. A conventional at 1500 lbs TW is max for most receivers.


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Old 12-29-2014, 05:23 PM   #63
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Steve,
Here is an example of how Ford markets this information:

( I especially like point number seven in small print at the top of the page )

http://www.ford.com/resources/ford/g...typu_sep11.pdf

Edit: Regarding Slowmovers point about 1500 pound max tongue weight, good point, and at least on my Ford, that limit requires the 2.5" hitch receiver which came on the F350 DRW. Most of the smaller trucks have a 2" which is limited to 1250 pounds

Edit two: 1850 pounds F350 with 2.5" receiver and long wheelbase chassis
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Old 12-29-2014, 05:25 PM   #64
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Yes, I've seen tongue weight specified different for 5'ers vs travel trailers, but not max towing.
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Old 12-29-2014, 05:46 PM   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
Yes, I've seen tongue weight specified different for 5'ers vs travel trailers, but not max towing.

Max towing is still GCWR if you want to play that game. When I ran hotshot the empty GN tandem trailer I pulled behind a DRW weighed 8k and we often were 10k past GCWR once loaded. We ran at or above the speed limit as able. The trucks only lasted about 300k if they were Dodge. Fords and GM were about how to go broke.

Door placard loads are the thing. Use a scale to set it up. The other ratings are guidelines only.


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Old 12-29-2014, 06:07 PM   #66
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OK, found it all here: http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...82001339,d.aWw

The problem is my truck is geared 3.42, but in '14 and '15, that's the only gear offered. Anyway, my weights are as I stated above, but max towing is 9550lbs, and GCWR is 17,000. I'm very close to max towing, probably a bit over, (8900+,- trailer axle weight hooked up not including tongue weight on the truck) and over GCWR by probably 1,500lbs. However, my loaded axle weights are fine.

And to think, there are places in the world where people tow these trailers with minivans.
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Old 12-29-2014, 06:43 PM   #67
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That's because you haven't tried a car with a heavy trailer I'd guess. My Dad pulled his TT with a near 1k TW with the same car for a dozen years. And didn't think a 3/4T Suburban much of an improvement except he could carry more in it. It was also not as stable. Nor as much fun to drive solo. Both were reliable and long-lasting however as each went to 190k. Two vehicles in 27-years of owning that trailer.


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Old 12-29-2014, 07:10 PM   #68
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Years ago my father towed a 31' Airstream quite a bit with a Chrysler station wagon, until he learned better. Kept blowing out tires because they were overloaded, and burning out transmissions even though the car was equipped with a large auxiliary transmission oil cooler. Also had trouble keeping the engine cool any time he was climbing grades in the mountains.

Finally he traded for a Suburban, and had no more problems until he traded the 31' for a 35' Avion. Then the 1/2 ton Suburban wheel bearings kept going out. So then he traded for a 3/4 ton, and never had another problem.

I've tried to not make the exact same mistakes I saw my father make.
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Old 12-29-2014, 08:17 PM   #69
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Well just to confuse things even more and offer my own "expert" opinion, I have the following to offer.

I am the same guy that came on the forum last fall (little over a year ago) and told of how I was using a Land Rover Discovery to pull my 23ft FB Flying Cloud. We made several successful trips, from the gulf coast to Fort Campbell, KY. No problems what so ever. Of course I was having to observe my mirrors so I could be prepared for the big trucks that would overtake me, this would push the AS and TV around a little. Even went to Fort Bragg, NC once with this configuration. On the return trip I had a close call. Sway. I did not lose it but when I got home I started looking and reading the forum. And reading the forum. If any of you remember I would defend my setup TV - AS with all the fervor of an politician! I now own a 2015 Dodge Ram 2500 Cummins. See, the truth is we defend the way we do things, while I had nothing else to tow with, the Land Rover was the most wonderful vehicle under the sun! I still own the LR Disco, it is my pride and joy, for OFF ROAD! But be safe, people. Air Streamer's lives matter!
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Old 12-29-2014, 09:22 PM   #70
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Amen ,you have more than you need, but more is better and more comfortable....
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