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Old 07-21-2016, 12:52 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
2004 28' International CCD
Cocoa , Florida
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 64
Ram 1500 tow vehicle

Hello fellow streamers,
I have been reading a lot of posts reg tow vehicles and have a question to throw out there. We had a 2000 Lincoln Navigator and just blew the motor on her. She was a very faithful truck but could not justify the $$$ on rebuilding the engine. I just replaced it with a 2013 Ram 1500 with the 5.7 Hemi. It is rated at 10,000 lb towing capacity, plenty for our 2004 28' international. My question is how many of you, if any, have the same?? Do you like the 1500. Have you had any issues with it??. We have not hooked it up yet to take it on her "maiden voyage ". I will say this has to be the most comfortable truck we've ever had, it drives like a caddy but wondering what is in store for us when we go out. The 2500 was a bit out of our price range and we got a warranty for life on this one so we couldn't resist. Your questions, comments and concerns would be appreciated.
It's hot out there so watch your tires!
I hope you ALL have a great weekend and stay safe!!

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Old 07-21-2016, 01:10 PM   #2
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1991 25' Excella
Stanfield , Oregon
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 317
It well do great just make sure and use a good wd hitch. We own two of them and both tow our 25 ft well. The coils springs on the rear sag easy id recommend airlift 1000's they go inside the rear coils I run them at 25 psi with an Anderson wd hitch. Ive never had any issues with sway or rough ride. Both axles are well within weight capacity etc.

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Old 07-21-2016, 06:27 PM   #3
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sacramento , California
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 185
2015 fc twin. 2014 5.7 3.92 axle
Have Curt leveling system
No problems drive from Sacramento to lake Tahoe on 80 and 50. Rpms 3500 max at 60+ up hill no problem. No issues great truck and great stream
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Old 07-21-2016, 06:45 PM   #4
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2009 25' FB International
2018 27' Globetrotter
Hanover , Pennsylvania
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 1,663
We use our 2013 RAM 1500, 5.7 with 8 speed tranny and 3.55 rear, to pull our 25' International. It does a great job towing. If there is a weakness it is with payload. We just have to be careful with what we carry with us.

We love the truck. It rides great, shifts smoothly and get fairly good gas mileage for a truck.
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Old 07-22-2016, 12:05 PM   #5
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2014 25' Flying Cloud
Temple , Texas
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 149
Blog Entries: 1
You are going to love the Ram, I have the Airlift 1000, and add 28-30 psi, I do not think that they something you have to have, but they add a little stability. A good WDH is also a good plan.
2014 Flying Cloud 25FB
2018 Ram 2500; Diesel
Blue Ox WDH
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Old 07-22-2016, 12:11 PM   #6
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2016 26' Flying Cloud
2016 25' Flying Cloud
1997 21' Excella
Watervliet , Michigan
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 271
I pulled a 25FC RB, heavy tongue weight , with 1500 5.7 8 spd fully loaded, too loaded actually, all through WY and ID mountains last summer. Home base MI. I am really an oil burning 3/4 ton guy so my experience comes with a lot of bias. But I gave it a shot, 6,500 mile out west test. The Ram 1500 far exceeded my expectations in what a 1/2 can do!!!

I went to the scales, yep, pretty much over max everywhere. Just like 80% of most 1/2 tons out there pulling an AS. Like others have noted don't skimp on getting the best WD hitch you can buy.

If I had one big upgrade to add to your knew ride, toss the stock/standard load range tires and upgrade to next higher level load range for your safety. Plus they will wear much longer than standard load range. And much safer too with that big payload.

2016 RAM 2500 6.7L Cummins, 4WD, Crew, Rear Air
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Old 07-22-2016, 12:12 PM   #7
WBCCI # 23456
2000 30' Excella
Greeneville , Tennessee
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 320
I too took a chance on the Ram 1500. I bought the ECO Diesel, 3.92 anti-slip. I get great fuel mileage and the greatest ride in any pick-up. I have Boss air bag suspension load assist kit and the Anderson anti-sway hitch. Can you see my smile from there?
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Old 07-22-2016, 12:59 PM   #8
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2002 30' Classic S/O
Garden Valley , Idaho
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,570
You should have looked at an F-150, higher payload, better mileage, and the 2015-16 models are a real barging right now. But, since you already pulled the trigger on a Dodge, it will probably work.
2008 F-250 4X4 Lariat V-10
2002 Airstream Classic 30' w/SO #2074
2007 Kubota 900 RTV
1996 Ford Bronco
2007 Lincoln LT
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Old 07-22-2016, 01:10 PM   #9
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2015 28' Flying Cloud
East Falmouth , Massachusetts
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 42
Look into installing some airbags in the rear suspension. If you go to the Rockies, avoid the mountain roads. I took my 28 FC to Colorado with my Ram 1500 Hemi and I barely made it over some of the mountain roads and could barely stop at the bottom. Just avoid these roads and you'll be fine. It's a great truck.
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Old 07-22-2016, 01:18 PM   #10
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1973 27' Overlander
Penokee , Kansas
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 32
Bhkh 226

We pull our 72 Overlander along with a 1200lb Yamaha Rhino in the back bed just off the ball with no problems with our 2012 Ram Tradesman/hemi.. Since my 1500 was the last year for the 6 speed trans,,, I have found in hilly country I just hold it in 4th gear to keep the transmission from hunting for gears. Thats hard on any auto trans... Since 4th is direct drive with 2 over drives it bypasses all the gear sets and the power feeds in and out without any friction.. .Even on 100f days and a head wind the trans temps never get over 160f by doing do.. If I let the transmission hunt for gears it can go above 190f real fast..

I did add a set of air bags in the rear coils to stiffen things up and gain some extra spring clearance for pot holes and such at 25 lbs pressure.. After having a diesel Ram it took a little adjustment for me missing that raw power of the Cummins,, but the little Hemi does just fine.. For the savings of over $12,000 makes the little gasser that much easier to embrace. Sodbust

Empty I see 20mpg hiway,,, and loaded with trailer/Rhino its always above 12mpg.. Not going to get to upset about 3 mpg I am missing for not having the diesel.. I would like to try out the newer small diesel that they offer with the 8 speed but our local dealers cant get there hands on them.. When you live in an area with 1 working stoplight in over 900 sq miles you get by with what you got. Sodbust
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Old 07-22-2016, 01:25 PM   #11
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2014 25' FB Flying Cloud
Mattituck , New York
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 33
We had both the 1500 hemi and the 1500 eco diesel. Up graded the suspension with the RAM air bags and leveling. Both trucks are superb, * speed trany is great for up hills and down. Asothere have daid the rear suspension on the 1500 needs some help but it is a great truck.
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Old 07-22-2016, 03:14 PM   #12
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2018 30' International
Petaluma , California
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 18
Yeah, I had a 2012 Dodge Ram 1500 hemi with tow package and we user it a lot with our 25 AS with no problems or concerns. It easily pulls the Rocky Mountain passes and we got 10 MPG to boot!
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Old 07-22-2016, 08:20 PM   #13
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2016 30' Flying Cloud
Truckee , California
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 34
Been There...

I recently traded in a Ram 1500 Ecodeisel for a 3500. The 1500 ED was a great truck but I felt a little light in loafers as a TV. I purchased it as I was led to believe it had 1800 lbs payload. They I came across a Ram towing specifications page and when I spec'd out this truck with a crew cab and 4x4 and the ED engine the MAX payload dropped to 1099 lbs.

My 25 foot AS has a dry tongue weight of 837 "according to Airstream" and a 1200 lb tongue weight according to the scale. Add to that passengers and gear in the truck and in the AS I was pushing 2000 lbs payload. I was not comfortable with that. I didn't expect the truck to fall apart while going down the road but long term ware and tear has to be effected. I am not a payload engineer and add to that that car sales people don't even know the difference between payload and towing weight. I was disappointed in the industries lack of real knowledge in these matters. Anything to make a sale.

What I did learn over time is the following:
I WD hitch does not increase your trucks payload capacity.
Airbags do not increase your payload.
Both of these item use up payload. As do all added accessories.
Higher Load range tires are a very good idea but they do not increase payload capacity.

But your in good company as it looks to me that about half of those folks towing something out there are overloading their TV.

Maybe it does not matter.....
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Old 07-22-2016, 10:21 PM   #14
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2012 30' International
Ferndale , Washington
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 100
I have the RAM 1500 2015 with the 3.4 rear end pulling our 30' International Serenity using a Blue Ox WD hitch. We have been from our home in western WA to our other home in Withrop WA across Hwy 20 at 5000' with absolutely no problem with power or braking down hill. We have been down I5 to Phoenix, to all the parks in Southern Utah up and down some high altitude steep hills. I can alway keep the speed limit (plus a little). Even in 100+ degree heat the tranny temp never budges and I average 12 mpg towing. I love this truck with 385 hp and 420 ft lbs of torque!
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Old 07-22-2016, 10:22 PM   #15
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2012 30' International
Ferndale , Washington
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 100
Btw, I also have a GMC 3500 Dually Duramax but I rarely tow the AS with it as the RAM rides so much nicer!
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Old 07-22-2016, 10:35 PM   #16
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2012 30' International
Ferndale , Washington
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 100
I think you made a GREAT choice with the RAM. The 8 speed ZF German made transmission is the best of the 1500s. The HEMI is time proven and with improvements has mileage just 1mpg below the 6 cylinder Ford. Most people are stuck on one brand but every time i a buy a new truck I test drive all three (OK some people like the Tundra but with less hp and torque than the RAM and 2 mpg less why?). They are all great products but when I drive a Ford I can't get comfortable in the seat! GM and RAM are close for me but I like the dash and integration of the technology in the RAM best. It is a personal choice and they will all do the job and serve you well for a couple hundred thousand miles. I would just say that next time you are in the market for a truck try all of them as at this point they are all super quality vehicles and will give you trouble free services!
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Old 07-22-2016, 11:05 PM   #17
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2012 25' Flying Cloud
Battle Lake , Minnesota
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 7,716
We have been extremely happy with our 2012 Ram 1500 Hemi and now Ram 1500 EcoDiesel towing our Airstream all over the country six months every year. The 8-speed transmission was a great improvement, works beautifully with the EcoDoesel and 3.92 axles with smooth power delivery and excellent engine compression braking.

They have carried all we have ever needed on our trips, provided plenty of power and braking, and our ProPride hitch ensures excellent weight distribution and absolute stability.

We manage load capacity by loading the trailer to 10-12% trailer weight on the hitch, and carry little weight behind the rear axle of our truck. Last weighing this spring showed our loaded Airstream and ProPride hitch adds 840 lbs to our truck when weight distribution is set. We could do a little better, our goal is 740 lbs.

We much prefer a nice riding tow vehicle which must also be a daily driver on our long trips. The Ram 1500 with coil or air suspension is very nice, it doesn't beat us or or Airstream up, we have experienced none of the damage others have reported inside their Airstreams. We prefer the P-rated 20 series tires, plenty of load capacity, great handling and a nice ride. With an effective weight distribution hitch and thoughtful loading we are able to see only 20 lbs difference between front and rear axle weights of the truck, no air bags needed to achieve a very well balanced truck.

The Ram Hemi was easy on fuel as pickups go, the EcoDiesel is remarkable. We absolutely love this truck with or without the Airstream hitched up.

Doug and Cheryl
2012 FC RB, Michelin 16, ProPride 1400
2016 Ram 1500 Laramie Crew Cab 4X4 Ecodiesel 3.92 axles

The Truth is More Important Than the Facts
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