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Old 05-01-2007, 09:11 AM   #141
Tom, the Uber Disney Fan
 
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I have a question for Amsterdamer, Rich Luhr, and others that tow with 1/2 ton SUV's. About a month ago I bought my wife a 2007 Expedition with the 5.4L V-8 and the heavy duty towing package. The towing package includes: Class IV hitch receiver, 4 & 7 pin connectors, heavy-duty auxiliary transmission oil cooler, heavy-duty radiator and is pre-wired for electronic brake controller. It has a maximum loaded trailer weight capacity of 9,200 LBS and produces 300 HP @ 5,00 rpm and 365 lb-ft @ 3,750 rpm. How does this compare to your tow vehicle's towing specs?

I specifically got the heavy-duty towing package with the intentions of using this as a back-up tow vehicle to my F-250 PSD and limit its use to short trips and non-mountain towing. I would plan on getting a set of clip on mirror extensions and a Prodigy brake controller, but it seems that's all I should need to use the Expedition to tow with. I realize at 119 inches, the wheel base is considerably shorter than my crew cab and would not handle the trailer as well. But, I'm sure it would ride much better than my F-250.

Any thoughts? Would there be a significant change to the set up of my Equal-i-zer brand trailer hitch? Is it worth investing in a set of mirrors and a brake controller to try it out?
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Old 05-01-2007, 09:45 AM   #142
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Here's the comparison:

2007 Ford Expedition w/ tow package
5.4L V-8
300 HP @ 5,000 RPM
365 ft-lb torque @ 3,750 RPM
Class IV hitch
4 & 7 pin connectors
aux tranny cooler
wheelbase 119 inches
9200 lb tow rating

2005 Nissan Armada w/"Big Tow" package
5.6L V-8
305 HP @4,900 RPM
385 ft-lb torque @ 3,600 RPM
Class IV hitch
7-pin connector
aux tranny cooler
wheelbase 123 inches
9100 lb tow rating

Pretty comparable.

The relatively short wheelbase compared to most full-size pickups eventually led us to a Hensley hitch, but we towed for over six months full-time with a Reese and it was satisfactory. We had to tow slower with the Reese (always under 65) to maintain the same feel of control.

Because the forum tends to so often get dragged down into "tow vehicle wars" I won't post any further here on the subject of tow vehicles, but you know how to reach me privately if you want to discuss further. Suffice to say we are happy with our vehicle choice after 40,000 miles of towing so far!
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Old 05-01-2007, 12:26 PM   #143
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We plan to move to central Florida in the next year or so and will be within 35-70 miles in either direction to beaches and most of the places we would probably want to camp on weekends. For anything more than that I would want to tow with my F-250 for economy and to have the extra wheel base for stability. But for those shorter trips I thought the Expedition might be a little more comfortable both on the way to the destination and once we get there for site seeing and such. I don't think I would use it often enough to invest in a Hensley Hitch, though. They are wonderful hitches, but I think anything over 100 miles each way and I would use the truck. I may e-mail you or PM you with a couple of questions when I get ready to outfit it to get some advise. Thanks Rich.
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Old 05-01-2007, 06:48 PM   #144
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnie's Mate
I have a question for Amsterdamer, Rich Luhr, and others that tow with 1/2 ton SUV's.
I towed my 30BH about 140 miles round trip with the Expedition last weekend and I felt completely comfortable with it. Going up a steep grade, I would like more horse power, but what I have is adequate. The 5.4L and tow package is a necessity, which you have, but I have seen postings from others that dont. I always tow in 3rd gear (lockout button) and my RPMs are 2500 at 65MPH with the lockup torque converter, right where they should be. When backing into a spot, it is nice to have a shorter wheelbase since it wont swing out as far across the road. I have a Reese dual-cam plus additional friction sway control and the rig tows straight.

If I were shopping for a new SUV TV, Id like to see Ford offer either a larger engine (but not their V10), or a diesel. While I agree that a ton would be a better TV than an Expedition, I think that the Safari 30BH is within its capabilities, but certainly at the upper end. A 30 Classic would be too much.

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Old 05-02-2007, 09:39 AM   #145
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Thanks for the response Amsterdamer. I had noticed that you tow with an Expedition. My wife's previous daily driver was a '99 Expedition with the 4.6L (?) and I knew long ago that just wouldn't cut it. I think the weight of the new one is about 6,000 LBS so I feel it has enough heft to control the 30' Safari since they are roughly the same weight empty. The wheel base is a little short, though, and that concerns me and that was why I am interested in your feed back. I really don't foresee us using it in the mountains to tow with, but for shorter trips it might be convenient. I didn't think about the shorter wheel base being easier to back into camp sites but that is a good thing to remember.

I have an equal-i-zer brand hitch and have been pleased with it on the truck, but I will have to remember to take it a little slower on short trips with the Expedition and stay away from truckers on the interstate!
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Old 05-02-2007, 10:11 PM   #146
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While this is the Bunkhouse thread....

I was wondering if any of you with the bunkhouses that have the rear lower full size bed (supposed to be 54" wide) have noticed the mattres being a little narrow. On my Bunkhouse (05) the mattress is about 5-6" from the bathroom wall, thus leaving a large crevas for a kid to roll into.

I am thinking after looking at my brochure, that I got a Bambi or 25' rear bedroom mattress?

Anyone elses mattress a little narrow??
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Old 05-02-2007, 11:44 PM   #147
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Stress Cracks Repair

My 30' BH has been repaired by Oasis RV in Tucson,AZ. As promised I am posting pics and comments. I was hoping to post the pic then the narrative comment but can't seem to make it do that. Anyhow Janet said the pics would automatically appear in the post after I click Submit Reply. So here goes with the comments that hopefully are in sync with the pictures.
---They did not have to remove the front windows. They pulled the old panel out and later shoved the new panel up into the groove under the window and of course riveted the sides. I was pleased with that since the least you disturb the better.
---The stress cracks stopped at about the point where the moulding (belt) was at the bottom of the panel. However in time they probably would have continued on to the end of the panel.
---The vertical studs were not anchored very well to the frame at the bottom. You could push and move the stud with your finger. They installed substantial corner braces to anchor the studs and hopefully eliminate the movement.
---It is not apparent in the picture but they rounded the corners on the cut-out where the door framing is mounted.
---The last picture shows the finished product.
Hopefully this will prevent future stress cracks since any more will not be covered when my Warranty expires in November,2007.
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Old 05-03-2007, 01:14 AM   #148
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Great documentation!

Sandy -

Did you babysit that TT during the entire visit to the 'nursery'? You certainly have a spectrum of photos that covers the work done. Glad that you did whatever you did to get that 'photo diary', AND that you posted it for us! Thanks!!!!!!!!

Photos are ALWAYS GREAT!!!!!!!!!!

Hopefully your problems are at an end with the work that was done...

Enjoy that AirStream!!!

Axel
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Old 05-03-2007, 01:35 AM   #149
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SafariSS
On my Bunkhouse (05) the mattress is about 5-6" from the bathroom wall, thus leaving a large crevas for a kid to roll into.
That doesn't sound right. Ours has the double bed on the bottom and the mattress does not leave a gap that wide. I would ask a dealer or the factory about that.

On the other hand, it sounds like your mattress might be easier to get sheets onto!
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Old 05-03-2007, 06:03 PM   #150
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnie's Mate
...Any thoughts?...
hi m'mate...

rich's report on towing is a pretty good benchmark...

my thought is related to tires and air pressure.

the expedition should have properly rated tires stock...

but verify this.

do you have 18s or 20s?

when towing, inflate to the max psi front and rear...

while lower inflation pressures might feel better in everyday driving,

the towing experience will improve with attention 2-air

cheers
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Old 05-03-2007, 11:25 PM   #151
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When I bought the F-250 the air pressure was in the 45-50 LBS range. I'm sure the dealer lowered the pressure to make the firm suspension ride better, but the truck was all over the lane when I was towing. I increased the pressure to the max listed on the sidewall and took one washer out of the hitch head and now I can steer with two fingers at highway speeds.

I'm sure the Expedition has lower than optimum towing air pressure in the tires for the same reason. In the month that we have had it I haven't thought about checking the pressure. I don't anticipate using the Expedition for towing until next year sometime. I don't have the brake controller or the mirror extensions yet. The shortest trip we have planned this year is a trip of about 150 miles each way next weekend when we go to Chattanooga with my brother-in-law and his family. The other trips are over 250 miles each way and I wouldn't want to use the Expedition to tow on any of those trips for fuel economy reasons.
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Old 05-04-2007, 02:08 PM   #152
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R&SZinser
All the screws for the clearance lights are rusted.
We had the same problem. We fixed the problem by replacing the originals with stainless steel screws and hard fiber sealing washers ordered from Mcmaster-Carr McMaster-Carr. The screws are metric (M4 X 16M, 0.7 pitch); part# 90116A213. The washers are metric hard fiber, size M4; part# 95225A320. Just put the part numbers into the Find Products search engine and they will come up. Hope this helps.
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Old 05-05-2007, 08:52 PM   #153
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Hi All

Here are pictures of changes and additions to our 30' Bunkhouse.

Drain support brackets. The sheet metal screws used to attach the original drain support stripped out after a couple thousand miles. We therefore replaced the thin metal holder with steel brackets (stainless steel, 1/8" thick, 1" wide, cut and bent into the weird shape shown in the picture). I tapped the frame and bolted on the brackets. The drain pipe is much more stable and less anxiety-inducing.
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Reinforced tank straps. The next picture shows the sturdier straps that I welded up to hold the gray water and fresh tanks. Our trailer does not look as though it is expecting anymore.
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Front storage compartment frame fix. The cracks in the aluminum skin at the corners of the front storage compartment were fixed and stabilized by Airstream in JC. Several rivets had popped and were replaced during surgery.
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Microwave addition. We ordered the trailer with the conventional oven so that we could boondock and bake. However, in our travels we find a microwave to be indispensible. Therefore, we installed a microwave ($19.99 from Fry's electronics in Las Vegas) in the upper pantry/closet next to the refigerator. I cut the pantry/closet door on a table saw, attached new plastic edging to cover the end of the particle board, and reattached the handle in a higher position. Electrical hookup was not a problem because the trailer's electrical system had a free breaker not in use. Wood supports on the sides and bottom of the microwave hold it in position.
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Fix for the vinyl flooring/siding in bathroom. The vinyl flooring/siding in our bathroom detached after about a year. We tried to resilicone/reglue the vinyl back into place, but to no avail. Using aluminum carpet edger, I was able to bend and mold a retainer which was then screwed into the plywood backing.
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More additions. Cutting board, magazine rack, front bedroom undercabinet book storage, computer keyboard storage above dining table.

Bye for now
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Old 05-06-2007, 10:42 PM   #154
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RossFam, those are awesome tweaks! Thanks for posting them.

We also had the drain support flange strip out, but in our case it was over a year of full-timing and 30,000 miles of towing. See this post from our blog for details of how I fixed it.

Likewise, we had the same issue with the peeling vinyl in the bath. I was thinking of trying your solution, so it's good to see that the concept works.

And the extra storage is great! You can never have too much storage, especially for magazines and other paper that seems to quickly accumulate.
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Old 05-11-2007, 08:07 PM   #155
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Stress Crack Repair

Attached you will find photos of repair approved by JC and made by Airstream of Western Pa. Mechanics Alex and Karl have many years experience working on Airstreams and they felt this was a good solution to the problem. I still have the front storage and it is now easier to access via the wider door.

I would also like to highly recommend Airstream of Western Pa.
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Old 05-11-2007, 08:36 PM   #156
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Nice repair Pintoman....

Hey Pintoman,

Did your dealer custom fabricate the door? It looks different (more than just the deminsions) than the stock one.

Looks great, ready for summer!!!
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Old 05-11-2007, 10:49 PM   #157
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Very nice. Do you have any idea of this repair can be performed by other dealers? I would like to have this done to my bunkhouse but it's unlikely we'll be able to get near PA this year. Instead, I'd like to have a convenient dealer contact the guys who did your repair and see if they will share the technique.
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Old 05-12-2007, 12:36 AM   #158
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SafariSS
Did your dealer custom fabricate the door?
looks like the standard rear 'trunk' door-frame assembly for the traditional rear bedroom classic models...

cheers
2air'
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Old 05-12-2007, 12:48 AM   #159
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Second that

Quote:
Originally Posted by rluhr
Very nice. Do you have any idea of this repair can be performed by other dealers? I would like to have this done to my bunkhouse but it's unlikely we'll be able to get near PA this year. Instead, I'd like to have a convenient dealer contact the guys who did your repair and see if they will share the technique.

Second that...Rich... please do share contact info.

Brent
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Old 05-12-2007, 12:59 AM   #160
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easy fellas...

this repair looks fine but i'd have 2 big concerns before biting...

1. will this solve the problem?
i have a nagging suspicion the skin tearing is related to the design of this model and part of the reason it was discontinued. will ne1 at a/s confirm this? not on a bet...

2. how much is that door gonna leak?
while towing there will be suction pulling the door away from the gaskets while rain water will be forced toward the door.
even on the rear end these doors aren't completely water tight (ask me how i know) and latching mechanism is very very malleable...
also under braking stuff will slide forward against the door...

i understand the reluctance to give up outside access but the full panel replacement, with extra bracing sure looks like a better long term repair.

cheers
2air'
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