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2009 Airstream PanAmerica
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Airstream Name
Year 2009
Make Airstream
Model PanAmerica
Length 34'
Options All Available at time of Production
2009 Airstream PanAmerica
2009 Airstream PanAmerica 2009 Airstream PanAmerica 2009 Airstream PanAmerica
Tow Vehicle
2009 Airstream PanAmerica Tow Vehicle 2009 Airstream PanAmerica Tow Vehicle 2009 Airstream PanAmerica Tow Vehicle
2010 Tundra Platinum Crewmax 4x2 Short Bed
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:39 AM   #2
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2009 34' Panamerica
weyburn , Saskatchewan
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How panamerica tow

I just bought 2009 panamerica and wonder how it tows with it heavy hitch weight. I drive a 2010 dodge 3500 single axles diesel wonder if I need airbags on truck. We race motocross and will using it for that and camping,wonder how you like trailer so far. We don t mind smaller living area since there is 5 in are family but planning on make garage into kids bedroom after we unload bikes. I bought trailer hoping it will tow light. Have a lot of friends we ride with that have huge 4 slide out toy haulers that hate towing them they 14000 pounds where it looks like panamerica only weight 7500 pounds. Thanks for your help.
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:24 PM   #3
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Panamerica

I'm looking to move up to a Panamerica. There doesn't seem to be many of them around. Yes, at 1200+ pounds hitch weight, that's a lot more than many trailers. You mention a 7500 pound trailer weight. I believe empty, the Panamerica is 7200 pounds. Fully loaded, its 11,500 pounds! If you're a family of five, I expect your Panamerica will be closer to fully loaded (if not actually over loaded) much of the time. Its very easy to be driving with one or more parameters overweight. I would strongly recommend that you get your complete rig properly weighed (truck scales are not the way to go on this). The Escapees RV Club offers a "Smart Weigh" program where each wheel is weighed. Then, a trained pro will go over the report with you. There are other places that can do this important service for you. Because of the weight involved, if I can find a Panamerica, I'll have to upgrade to a more capable tow vehicle as the Sprinter van I have now tops out at 7500 pound tow rating.

If you've done any towing with your Panamerica since your original post, I'd be interested in hearing how you've fared. Good luck with it!
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Old 05-08-2013, 09:14 AM   #4
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2009 34' Panamerica
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i went on a trip last week about 250 miles. Had 3 dirtbikes in garage and one in back of truck. Have a 10000 pound equalizer hitch with 1000 pound bars setup and trailer pulled great no problems. The only real small issue is back of trailer is really low and must be very care full going into uneven ground back will drag. Trailer has wheels welded on frame on back to ride on.
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:48 AM   #5
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Your Toyota Tundra tow vehicle has a GCWR rating that handles all that weight? From what I've read, the GCWR on a Toyota Tundra tops out around 10,000 pounds. Since a loaded Panamerica itself weighs well over that, I see a problem. Yes, many vehicle salesmen will lie to you about their products capabilities. Yes, you can move an overweight trailer with a tow vehicle that's not really suited for the job. The GCVW rating is there to help keep you safe. If you choose to ignore any of the placarded ratings, you do so at your own peril. The laws of physics have a way of biting you at the worst possible time (ie coming down a steep hill; needing to make an emergency stop etc ). Should you be involved in a crash, even if the other driver ran a red light and should be totally at fault, when police arrive, if they suspect you're driving overweight, they can call for a motor carrier safety unit to respond and inspect your rig. In the case of a fatality or serious physical injury, most jurisdictions require such inspection. I'm not trying to rain on your parade but please, for your own safety, make sure you've got this issue right. In the long run, it can actually save you a lot!
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Old 12-07-2013, 08:39 PM   #6
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Airstream PanAmerica

What size tow vehicle are you using with it?
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Old 12-08-2013, 10:47 AM   #7
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I am using a 2010 dodge 3500 mega cab single axle cumming diesel. It pulls trailer great.
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Old 12-08-2013, 01:04 PM   #8
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The numbers stated in this post are not accurate. 10,000 may be the towing capacity of a Tundra, not GCVW. Use a little bit of reasoning and logic. If the towing capacity is 10,000#, the GCVW must be more like 17,000#. The truck alone probably weighs 6,000 and it has a 1,500# payload. If GCVW was just 10,000 then it could only haul a 1,500# trailer. That just don't make no sense.
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Old 12-09-2013, 08:31 AM   #9
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Wow, definitely NOT the clearest placard I've seen.

Federal regs require vehicle mfgrs to make a Towing Guide available for their vehicles intended to be used as a tow vehicle. The twist however, is that said Towing Guide is ONLY available during the period of that model's first year of sale AND, you have to know about this guide and ask for one. I've NEVER been able to find one of these guides AFTER the model's initial sales year! With the easy availability of .pdf files, you have to wonder why mfgrs don't want consumers to have this information. The only reason I can think of, that this important information isn't made readily available, is that said information would clearly show how limited their vehicle's towing capacity truly is. Think about it; if a vehicle had really good specifications, wouldn't that information help vehicle sales? Go ask Toyota (or any other mfgr) for a Towing Guide for one of their current vehicles expected to be used as a tow vehicle. Once you have that in hand, then ask for a Towing Guide for an older tow vehicle. Let us know how that works out.

I was at an AirStream dealer in October and, was interested in buying a 25' Flying Cloud. Said trailer's Gross Weight was 7600 pounds. My Mercedes Benz 3500 Sprinter van has a Tow Rating of 7500 pounds. The dealer rightly told me NOT to tow a 25' and instead, recommended a 23'. Even with a 23' AirStream, if I were to fully load the trailer and Sprinter, I would have either a very small margin of safety or, actually be overweight in one or more parameters. Could my Sprinter tow the 25'? Of course. Would I be exceeding the Sprinter's limitations? Absolutely! Before towing anything, give some thought to a "worst possible scenario". Murphy's Law was made for people who don't.

Again, I'm sorry to be raining on your parade. You have a vehicle that tows a trailer you have. Until something goes wrong, everything seems honky~dory. Even if a catastrophe never befalls you, you're still stressing your rig beyond what the engineers designed for. Should a catastrophe bite you in the butt, you'll find yourself in a very bad place and, your insurance company might have a legal out if it can be shown that you failed to tow in a legal and prudent manner.
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Old 12-10-2013, 06:17 PM   #10
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Yes, the picture is out of focus, but- you can still distinguish what the numbers are-
Yes, it may be overloaded with too much firewood in the bed, but that is the only scenario in which it would be overloaded.
The numbers are actually a little lower since Toyota started using the SAE JR1287 (or whatever it is) standard for measuring capacities and limits.
Based on the numbers and the fact that Toyota sells them claiming they can tow 10,400# with 1,000# of tongue weight and all trailer manufacturers/dealerships claim the trailers are half ton towable I don't think the insurance companies would hesitate to pay a claim. After all, they know what I have and what I am doing with it.
The towing capacities of the Tundra are higher than GM 3/4 ton pickups and 1 ton Ford Econoline vans.
There are people out there towing with cars and minivans. Although minivans have a higher payload than 1/2 ton trucks, I doubt the univody is as strong as a body on frame pickup.
I will take another (clear) picture of the door placard some day when it isn't so cold.
I have seen Tundras towing 5th wheels. You know a fifth wheel weighs a lot more than my Airstream.
Although I have not had any trouble, I am honestly concerned about the transmission and the bearings. There is no way to check the transmission fluid (or you have to go under the vehicle, remove a plug , and stick your finger in the hole like a manual transmission). A forum member told me he had to replace his wheel bearings. My local Toyota dealer claims ignorance/lack of knowledge of a problem with the bearings and does not recommend a transmission flush/fluid change.
There sure are a bunch of folks on the forums towing with a Tundra...
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Old 12-10-2013, 06:28 PM   #11
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The difference in my situation and yours is that I have a 10,400# towing capacity, 1,000# tongue weight capacity, and a 1,500# payload.
I cannot remember the GCVW, but it's somewhere in the neighborhood of 15-16k.
In other words I can tow any Airstream trailer made.
Even with the new SAE method (only Toyota has bothered to re-figure and publish lower, more accurate numbers) I am still OK.
It would be great to have the extra heavy 3/4 or 1 ton frame, but I can't afford to replace a 32,000 mile truck with $2,400 owed on it- and unless it was a Ram Mega cab the backseat would be smaller...
You ain't rainin' on my parade. I know what I am doin'!
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Old 12-10-2013, 06:34 PM   #12
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I did see something on a website stating the Tundra GCVW as 10,000#. That is an error or mistake. Look at some other websites. Other websites have the GCVW correctly listed at a higher number I can't remember off hand- but 15, 16, or 17k.
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Old 12-10-2013, 08:43 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NY24 View Post
I was at an AirStream dealer in October and, was interested in buying a 25' Flying Cloud. Said trailer's Gross Weight was 7600 pounds.
What??
Really??

The new 25' Airstreams have a GVWR 7300 lbs NOT 7600 lbs.

Anyone claiming manufacturers specs are so critical should not trust a salesman to know them.
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