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Old 09-07-2010, 09:04 AM   #1
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1999 25' Safari
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Question Re: What TV Required?

Good Morning. We have come across a '70 Overlander which we were told is a 26'er (but, we've noticed that not everyone measures from the same points and lengths vary). We are also needing to buy a new TV and want to make certain we have enough "umph" to get down the road with some to spare for tall mountains when needed.

Our question: Do you think a 1/2-ton pickup (4x4) with a 5.3L engine could easily tow the 26'-27' Overlander successfully down the road as well as having enough power to easily do mountains? We are wondering if we'd need a 3/4-ton, but don't really want to go there.

Also, where could I find the dry weight for this AS?

Thanks.

D. Hall

PS -- I'm afraid we have the "fever", we just bought our first a month ago ('71 Safari) and are already looking for others to add to our "herd"!! It must be alluminumitis!
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Old 09-07-2010, 09:30 AM   #2
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Depends

Depends on the truck.

Doesn't matter at all what anyone "thinks" - the real question is if the manufacturer rates the truck to tow what you want it to tow.

Here is a link to the "Trailer Life" tow ratings covering most of the trucks and SUVs made in the 2000's.


Trailer Life Magazine: Follow the Road to Adventure

Make sure to consider the available carrying capacity (usually the first manufacturers limit most occasional towers will bust, followed by trailer weight, followed by gross combined wieght).

Most here on the Forums will recommend a conservative 20% "max allowable towing weight" safety factor. In reality, this 20% towing safety factor fits very well in a real world max allowable Gross Vehicle Weight limitation.

Most of the Airstream "weight" numbers are way on the light side. Don't guess at numbers - go to a scale and get a real weigh.

Each type of truck may have a HUGE range of ratings depending on how it is equipped - example: a 2000 Chebby Sierra 1500 carries ratings from 3900lbs to 9800lbs - quite a spread.

As stated earlier in this post - you need to honestly evaluate each individual truck as to whether it is fit for purpose or not.
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Old 09-07-2010, 09:36 AM   #3
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You can probably due with a properly set up 1/2 ton TV. The older Airstreams are relative light. Since you keep adding to the herd, make sure that you get something that can handle your future acquisitions.

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Old 09-07-2010, 09:51 AM   #4
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Hi there. Here are the dry weights for the various Overlanders (numbers are dry weight, tongue weight, hitch height in inches):

1970 OVERLANDER DELUXE LY 27 TWIN 4515 450 19
1970 OVERLANDER DELUXE LY 27 DOUBLE 4565 460 19
1970 OVERLANDER INTERNATIONAL LY 27 TWIN 4525 455 19
1970 OVERLANDER INTERNATIONAL LY 27 DOUBLE 4575 465 19

You can see that they are all about 4,500 lbs, with tongue weight of about 450 lbs.

Airstream considers them all to be 27-footers by the way.

I can't imagine why a 5.3L V-8 wouldn't do a great job of pulling that trailer.
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Old 09-07-2010, 10:24 AM   #5
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Those numbers are very close to my 75 Trade Wind specs. I tow with an 07 Tundra with a 5.7 motor. It has more then enough power and brakes to pull up and down the mountains out west.
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Old 09-07-2010, 10:40 AM   #6
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I pull a 65 Safari only 22' and listed at 3800lbs. w/ 09 Chevy Silverado 4X4 1/2 ton w/towing package and the 5.3 engine. It handles it easy. Sometimes in really strong head winds or long hills I use 3rd gear instead of 4th. I have gotten as high as 16mpg (no wind or tail wind day) but most of the time it is 13mpg. 1/2 tons tend to ride smoother than heavier trucks. A diesel engine will pull a great deal more weight with ease but will cost a bunch more money, ride stiffer and get about the same millage.....Tim
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Old 09-07-2010, 01:59 PM   #7
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Thanks so much for all the information from everyone, that will really be helpful when making a decision.

Right now we have a 2002 GMC 2-wheel drive 1/2-ton which has over 100,000 miles -- does have a tow package on it though. She is towing the '71 Safari ok, but at times "grumbles" a little -- we haven't gone too far with her yet though. We bought her in Michigan, so the farthest we've gone (in time, I forget the mileage) is approx. 4 1/2 hours one way. We took her out this past weekend for our maiden camping experience this past weekend, went about one hour from home and did great, but no hills to speak of.

As Moosetags said, we are trying to make certain we are covered for the future, since we're thinking of buying a new GMC, 4-wheel drive -- didn't know if we could get by with a 1/2-ton or should invest in a 3/4-ton. Don't really want to go up to the 3/4 because of the added expense all around, but then again, we want to have enough power when needed.

I can't see us ever buying anything longer than the 27' AS's -- there's basically just the two of us, except when our kids (adults now) go with us for an occassional trip. For us the Safari works great, except, and this is a big except, the bath is a "wet" bath, and that just doesn't cut it for us. We'd like to have either a shower stall or a tub which we can hang a shower curtain or two around to shower in -- this Overlander has the tub.

If anyone has any other thoughts on all of this, we'd greatly appreciate hearing them so that we can consider all aspects before making the big plunge.

Thanks again.

Deb
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Old 09-07-2010, 02:16 PM   #8
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Old 09-07-2010, 02:48 PM   #9
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We have a 1971 27' Overlander that we easily pull with our 2009 Ford F150 Crew Cab. We have the factory tow package installed, and have the 4.6L 3V EFI V-8 engine and have never had an issue.
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Old 09-07-2010, 02:55 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by D. Hall View Post
If anyone has any other thoughts on all of this, we'd greatly appreciate hearing them so that we can consider all aspects before making the big plunge.

Thanks again.

Deb
Deb,

The only comment I would add to the pile you've already received is that you have already proved that a half-ton easily pulls a vintage 27-footer, and you will see that new ones are even rated as high as 10,000 lbs towing.

Which means that even a new 27-footer will not be a problem to tow.

So why buy more than you need...?
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