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Old 09-23-2016, 11:28 PM   #41
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PS. We were looking at 2000-2007 models under the Lexus LX470 badge. In 2008 they increased the engine to a 5.7L, and rebadged it as LX570. The older models were more in line with my budget. But happily I did get the Sequoia with the 5.7L engine.
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Old 09-24-2016, 06:10 AM   #42
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The blue boy is a portable waste tank to use if I'm at state parks or rallies with no or limited dump stations.


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Old 09-24-2016, 06:39 AM   #43
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I am an expert mechanic, and a dishonest lying liar.

I know how to change the oil in my van. Okay, that's all I know. That's kind of a lie because, I actually forgot how to do that. So you can take this with a grain of salt.

My vintage trailer weighs about 3000 lbs, after modifications. I had a Chevy 1500 van and was never happy with the braking. I actually had a few bad dreams about it. Had to replace brake pads and rotors a few times. When my van got on in years I moved up to a 2500. Some will say that is overkill, especially the folks towing with golf carts.

When I first starting towing, a few close friends gave me advice and told me not to worry, and that I would even forget that I was towing a trailer.

One of those people who gave that advice wrecked their SUV transmission towing a 20 foot SOB

Another burned out their transmission towing a boat, on a hot day down south

Another was an auto mechanic that burned out their transmission towing a pop up on a hot day, going 70 mph.

Things I want in a tow vehicle. "I already own a vehicle" does not come into play

#1 Safety
#2 Good brakes.
#3 Long wheelbase
#4 Good transmission with an aftermarket transmission cooler
#5 Power

In THAT order !!!!! I understand that money comes into play..Believe me on that one point.
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Old 09-24-2016, 07:54 AM   #44
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If everyone were able to buy a new tow vehicle, I would agree. But not everyone is. Sometimes we have what we have, so the question becomes "what can I do with it?"

If I'm not happy with the answer, the a new TV is needed. But first I need the answer.
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Old 09-24-2016, 06:53 PM   #45
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I would think one could find a very nice 1960's-1970's Overlander trailer for the $7,500-$20,000 range all day long. But I really don't understand some of the prices I've been seeing recently, so maybe I'm out of touch. Remember, 1969 trailers on is a little wider and in 1974 they will have a gray tank which some like.

Enjoy,
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Old 09-25-2016, 06:28 PM   #46
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I have been intrigued by Mr Thomson's work for a while. Much of what he says makes sense. But he completely lost me on the rollover thread.



Thomson said the Lexus GX460 was a poor choice of a TV due to its center of gravity. He recommended a Lexus RX350 in its place.



GX460 has body on frame construction, and is rated to pull 6500#

RX350 has unibody contruction, and it rated to pull 3500#



I can't imagine recommending the RX for anything but the smallest trailer. I'm more inclined to trust the engineering department at Toyota over the recommendation of this one man.



As has been said, none of our trailers were built for speed above 65 mph. I'm completely convinced that the GX is an excellent tow vehicle when towing within its capacities. Likewise, the LC is an excellent truck. As long as it is used within its stated limits, it should perform stupendously.

Unibody is structurally stronger. A 1960s unibody Dodge was a far better tow vehicle due partly to this as well as a lower center of gravity, better brakes, drivetrain and steering. It also became the overwhelming choice of police fleets. The late 1960s Dodge Polara Police Pursuit was a Tyrannosaurus Rex. Not exceeded in all around performance again until the mid 2000s Hemi Charger. Towed our kind of trailer beautifully. Reliably. And the vintage kin heavier than an AS.



Body on frame means an extra 6-700 lbs in many instances. Not a strength increase.

As to "tow ratings" they are part of marketing. An engineering sheen at best.

There's more on how to evaluate a good TV by design.
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Old 09-25-2016, 06:41 PM   #47
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Model that sleeps 4 adults under 5500 lbs or so

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Originally Posted by Rjavery View Post
I would add that I have logged around 2.5 million miles without an accident (and, yes, I realize it could happen tomorrow; that is part of the reason I've had no accidents). Around 250,000 of those miles were in an LC, and about that same number towing a 3000# trailer. I do recognize the issue with winds, and would NEVER be driving fast in high winds.

With the right RV AND best lash up it isn't much of a concern.

But man made winds are not about having a choice (oncoming semis or straight trucks). Or in being passed by same. Nor is it a choice when coming thru a gap in the hills or mountains.

Lash up is critical, but it's a mistake to think that a TV less capable of staying on its feet than the trailer is a "good" choice.

Besides just as a used TT can be a good choice, so can a used TV.

A compromised TV is just that. Want one? Good. Attend to making the lash up perfect and add antilock disc brakes to the trailer. Although all should be this way, it becomes critical when the TV is handicapped.

Old trailers can be nice, but one helluva lot of work. And that's before upgrading them. Unless stored indoors its entire life figure that insects, rodents and water intrusion will have happened. Be prepared for substantial costs in bringing things back to zero.

A ten to fifteen year old AS isn't quite "old" given decent care and at least a cover when pArked. But past a quarter century all bets are off.
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Old 09-25-2016, 08:37 PM   #48
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A 1960s unibody Dodge was a far better tow vehicle ...

As to "tow ratings" they are part of marketing. An engineering sheen at best.
I hope I'm never too old to learn a thing or two... I didn't realize unibody construction was so common prior to the last three decades. So now I know. Thanks.

[edit: My dad had a '69 Dodge Monaco (like a Polara with more chrome) with the 383 engine. He said it was his all-time favorite car (though as a child, I had a soft spot for his '62 Chrysler)]

If tow ratings are all just marketing, then the car makers have failed miserably to correctly market their unibody car/van/suv tow capacities. Nearly universally unibody cars have MUCH lower advertised tow ratings.
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Old 09-25-2016, 09:03 PM   #49
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...If tow ratings are all just marketing, then the car makers have failed miserably to correctly market their unibody car/van/suv tow capacities. Nearly universally unibody cars have MUCH lower advertised tow ratings.
Right. Some folks here argue that sedans/minivans are intentionally underrated to push customers to pickups that have a higher profit margin. This logic fails when you consider the European car manufacturers, who are NOT in the pickup market, and yet rate the sedans/minivans similar to domestic manufacturers.
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Old 09-25-2016, 09:13 PM   #50
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Model that sleeps 4 adults under 5500 lbs or so

Cars are not as profitable as trucks. Truck suspension is pretty well 1915 technology. Cars have a greater development cost and foreign competition in trucks is token.

Car tow ratings virtually disappeared circa 1990. Or a token and untested number was assigned. Just look to axle and tire ratings. Nothing new in that.

Weight means not much at all compared to the aerodynamic load. We could build an 1800-lb trailer that no one ton built could tow at a highway speed. All vehicles face a frontal square footage penalty. It matters more than the low weights of these trailers, especially relative to each other.

Chrysler went to unibody and torsion bar suspension in 1957. Motor was mounted lower and farther back than with GM and Ford. Front end weight rode on lower ball joints not on top of space robbing coils.

Tow ratings show up in about the mid/late 1960s. Hitch receivers were custom built locally from factory diagrams and specs. Much better at transferring TW, despite long rear overhang.

My Dads trailer (1975 Silver Streak) had about a 1k TW. More than 250-lbs was transferred back to the trailer. The other 750 was divided between the the car axles (Cadillac). The rear had more tongue weight than the front. Then we loaded five people onboard.

Grandparents had a luxury police car. A Monaco with all the options. All over Canada, US and deep into Mexico with their Streamline in the 1960s. 10-mpg whether towing or solo.

If someone wants to handicap himself with a short wheelbase solid axle TV, he's welcome. Problem of TT big enough to do the intended job just makes it harder. But trailer weight isn't the concern. It's always the sail area.
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Old 09-25-2016, 10:36 PM   #51
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Rjavery, to your original question, there are trailers that sleep 4 adults comfortably. Most trailers that have a full size couch will sleep two adult guests in relative comfort.

In stark contrast to others in these here parts, I suggest you not be afraid to pull a decent sized trailer. My Sequoia has the same engine as yours, and though my truck is wider, taller, longer than yours, weighs about the same. Yours is just a lot more comfortable than mine

We need a trailer we can take to our annual church convention. Comfort and convenience are our primary concerns. Huge closets for church clothes are mandatory. A full kitchen and a roomy bathroom are fundamental. But to get these features put us in a size well beyond what we thought we were comfortable pulling.

I asked everyone with any experience how much harder it was to pull a long heavy trailer. But the list of pros and cons always favored the longer trailers. The cons for longer heavier trailers are wider corners, and slower hills. The cons for shorter lighter trailers is cramped showers, cramped beds, frequent trips to the dump station, small refrigerators, tiny closets, minimal storage, sway when pulling, difficult backing. Those with short trailers say they have better access to smaller sites, but those with longer trailers claim it is rarely a problem. MPG is minimally different.

So we took the plunge and got a trailer that serves us very well at the church convention. I sometimes wonder if it would be that much more convenient to have a shorter trailer, but the quiet parade of Blue Boys at every campground assures me otherwise.

It is entirely reasonable for you to explore the capabilities of your LC. If getting something closer to the recommended tow limit will give you the convenience you need, then it would be a shame to stop short of it. Sure, there’s a learning curve when towing a big load, but there’s a learning curve to towing a light load too.
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Old 09-28-2016, 08:25 AM   #52
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Yes, Aluminati, I have both the LC and a Lexus RX, and I wouldn't want to tow anything over about 1000 lbs with the RX.
Also, I am not interested in a TT that doesn't have quality brakes. Way back when I started hauling boats, most trailers didn't have brakes, and there was/is night and day difference in towing with and without trailer brakes.
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Old 09-28-2016, 08:29 AM   #53
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Good list, although I have found that the tranny on the LC with towing pkg. has stood up quite well with a 3000# boat all over the south in summer.
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Old 09-28-2016, 02:14 PM   #54
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I think I am leaning toward staying away from the vintage TT at this point. Don't want to deal with the potential issues/hassles at my age.
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Old 09-28-2016, 02:34 PM   #55
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Alluminati, I failed to mention that I also had a Sequoia AND the LC, until I sold the Sequoia to my daughter. And, in case you're wondering, I NEVER buy a new car. I have learned that with the life of today's better vehicles, you can buy one with around 50k miles on it for about half the cost of a new one, then sell it at around 200k miles at a still reasonable price, and avoid the horrendous depreciation of the first few years, while still having a very dependable vehicle. It was a while back, but I bought my first LC, a '99, for $28k, with 50k miles, put 150k miles on it, and could have sold it for $15k (I let my son have it for $10k. He's still driving it at 260k miles. It has never had a mechanical failure. Timing belts every 100k, oil and lube, brake pads, tires, and one set of front rotors. It still has the original exhaust system.
Bought the '05 LC I have now for $21k, with 60k miles, and now have 185k on it, with exactly the same mechanical experience as the '99. I could easily get $15k for it, but my son is eyeing it...
The '06 Sequoia is the same story. Daughter bought it at 180k, and is happily driving it a year later. No mechanical issues except expendables.
The Sequoia has noticeably more room, and is slightly less comfortable (to mine and my wife's tushes). She loves driving big, safe, high visibility vehicles. Both are very good tow vehicles, and the Lexus GX and RX are in no way comparable vehicles. The Lexus LX-570 is mechanically the same as the LC.
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Old 10-03-2016, 10:56 AM   #56
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Clearly you know much more about larger Toyota trucks than I do. Most of my experience is with smaller models.

We got the Sequoia before we knew which trailer we would get. Glad we got something with such capabilities, especially when this 34' trailer was dropped in our laps. No doubt we are operating near the reasonable limits of our truck's abilities; the Sequoia is rated to pull 10K lbs, and we are in the mid 9Ks. Though we are not winning any races to the top of every incline, the truck continues to inspire confidence.

The 5.7L engine is a MONSTER. Trust it! It has plenty power to get you anywhere you want to go with anything you can attached to your hitch. Don't underestimate its abilities. There are plenty trailers with room for 4 adults to sleep comfortably. Don't limit yourself to a featherweight. You'll never be satisfied.

Raise your limit to 7K lbs and you will have far more options without overtaxing your TV. My trailer is 27 yrs old, and tows well. Last week we towed from St Louis to Portland OR. The Rocky Moutains were much easier than I expected, both uphill and down. The brakes on my trailer can bring me to a sudden stop on a downhill if I want. (Pathetic access to wifi on this trip is the cause of this tardy response).
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Old 12-07-2016, 03:30 PM   #57
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Rjavery, you'll do fine towing any airstream you'd like less than the rated 6500 lbs. With the utmost stability even. You and I both know there is likely no more overbuilt 1/2 ton than a Land Cruiser. Including the 1/2 trucks.

That's been my experience towing a heavily loaded 23D in the windiest and steepest of grades (CA Hwy 1 near Big Sur). With my '06 LX470.

Brakes and stability are amazingly solid, as the LC has a wide stance.

Where it will be a bit more challenged, with heavier trailers is towing power up hills. It won't be a powerhouse, but you'll be able to keep up with traffic and ahead of big rigs just fine.

Quote:
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Unibody is structurally stronger.
...
Body on frame means an extra 6-700 lbs in many instances. Not a strength increase.
slowmover, while I agree with you on some comments, in general, your opinions are not being productive. Conflating principles doesn't help your case either.

Stronger is not the same thing as stiffer!

Unibody is stiffer. But once you reach the yield point, it will crumble into a useless mess. Think soda can. It's quiet stiff and will hold up some good weight...until it doesn't.

Frame rails truly are far stronger in general. Not to mention more tolerate of abuse and fatigue wear. Which is why all real commercial tow vehicles use such architectures. Sure they might tremble and wiggle with lots of secondary motions, but that's good for longevity. Designers of passenger cars don't like the NVH associated with that.
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Old 12-23-2016, 11:22 PM   #58
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Trailer weight doesn't really mean much. Tongue weight has a little more bearing.

Normally I'd say choose the trailer first. But I wouldn't own your particular vehicle to do the towing. There are better choices among SUVs.

I recommend you review the posts of Can An RV dealer Andrew Thomson. Read them all, in fact, and have a look for his online column entitled "Hitch Hints".

He is the expert. No one else in the field has his experience. Thus, as he enjoys helping others outside of dealership duties (and consults with Airstream both as a dealer and as a hitch expert), it's a quick education to learn what matters. And what matters less.

"Weight" is a matters-less item. And a Land Cruiser is just not a great tow vehicle. Why that is, you'll discover.

Read. And then consult Mr Thomson. A really great combined rig awaits you.
You are so right about tongue weight. Most people foolishly discount the limit.

My wife and I researched our brains out this past summer and found the strongest SUV was the VW Touareg. It beat the Jeep, Jeep diesel, the Mercedes M class, Discovery, range rover, etc etc. The Touareg comes in with a 772 pound tongue weight limit.

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Old 12-24-2016, 05:25 AM   #59
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The LC is a great tow vehicle. Very stable, and a bulletproof transmission. We found the smaller gas tank, and lower mpg when pulling a trailer to be a issue. Not a big one, but when considering a trip to Alaska, big enough. If we were to camp with four adults, I'd advise the other couple to bring a nice tent. With cots and mattress pads, they can be very comfortable. We've only had a single guest a few times, and the dinette is "ok" for one.
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Old 12-24-2016, 07:35 AM   #60
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Slowmover I do question some of these ideas of the unibody, I know of several local unibody cars which had larger horsepower engines installed in them and the third time of coming off the line real hard , the roof had wrinkles and the doors wouldn't shut, as the body was sprung..also a few had the extra stiffeners welded to the sub frame, the wrong welding technique was used and that resulted in a sprung body..I rember the 1962 ford pickup and their unibody design ,put a load on it , you couldn't open the doors. Unibody is good in my wife's car, I want a frame under my towing vehicle..my opinion
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