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Old 07-16-2018, 06:12 AM   #121
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I tow with a Tacoma and if I ever replace it, it I will probably be with a larger pickup. But to me it seems pretty logical that a vehicle designed to handle well, with a low center of gravity and more even weight distribution between the front and rear axles would make a better TV.

Pickups are built with a very light rear ends in order to carry heavy loads in the bed. Without the load in the bed the rear end is so light that all you need is a little dew or gravel on the road and when you pull away from a red light you easily spin the wheels. I'm sure the opposite is true and braking is degraded on the rear just as much when stopping. A static load in the bed takes care of that, which is why people pile sandbags in the bed during winter. A dynamic load like a trailer bouncing around would only make it worse. Sure, the trailer does the same to a car, but the car is starting out with a better balance back to front.

Anyway, that's the way I see it when I "think about the physics" as others have advised. In the end, I'll still get a pickup because towing the AS is not the only thing I need a vehicle for.
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Old 07-16-2018, 06:17 AM   #122
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I have no experience towing with an MDX, especially one above it's factory rating. I tent to believe it can be safe up to a certain point. But I would want to at least test its handling with the trailer in a safe environment. So I wouldn't discount that advice and just rely on CanAm having set it up correctly. There's nothing like having felt the vehicle slide before to prepare you for when it happens on the road. But obviously keep it safe and work up to limits - don't start out a 70MPH and jam on the brakes.

But to answer your question of how to handle your father and his offer of using his F150, my solution would be to take advantage of his offer and do a side by side comparison. It's not often you get to test tow vehicles with real world towing. Take the truck and trailer out on a trip with some hills and see how it tows. You'll learn something, which might be that you like your MDX better. Make sure you set the hitch up correctly if you move it and record the positions to return it to original for the MDX.

I have an older F150 and it's a decent tow vehicle, but I wish it had a few more gears for more control of the engine speed and a bit more power if I were to take it up the Rockies. Having a turbo at elevation would be nice. I assume your MDX would accelerate better than my truck given it weighs less and has more power, plus a few extra gears should let you keep it in the power band. The independent suspension on the MDX does add another variable to towing stability - on one hand it makes for a more stable vehicle when not towing, but it could allow for more sway. I'm guessing CanAm's setup has that sorted out and overall that should work out better for emergency maneuvers.

As far as the pedal position for your wife, it's adjustable. My wife can safely drive the truck and she is not tall.
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Old 07-16-2018, 07:16 AM   #123
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My wife and I drove to Iowa a few years back from Oregon, and drove back a few years later a different way. on the way out we went thru Yellowstone and down through Nebraska, on the way back we went through Badlands, Montana, Northern Idaho. The Rocky's are steep and tall, but relatively short especially near Jackson hole into Idaho.


If you stick to the Freeway, the grades are never all that bad you shouldn't see more than 12%. in Oregon as long as you stay on I-84 the steep grades are fairly short, the rest are pretty gradual, usually 6% is typical before you get to the Columbia gorge. Once you get to the Columbia you don't have to climb any real hills. if you go out to the coast, you can take 101 down, to California and avoid most hills. Or if you don't want to go to the coast, Take 97 down to California.



Both routes are very different. Almost all the state parks in Oregon are along the Coast, there are RV parks every where, but Camping in Central or Eastern Oregon often means forest service, or BLM, and that means pit toilets no power, and only the popular spots have water available. Also in September you might want to check that campgrounds in central and eastern Oregon are not closed for the season yet. Along the coast there are many state Parks or County campgrounds, or RV parks that will all have power, water and showers, and most are at least partially open all year. it will rain quite a bit at the coast that time of the year, and be fairly cool everywhere, but the rain shadow can help keep central Oregon drier.



I've only been to Cleveland and Wooster Ohio, but if you haven't been to this northwest corner, there's not a lot of ways to get from one place to another. compared to the mid-west being laid out in a grid. sometimes you will just have to skip some destinations as it would mean driving hours out of your way. Our friends from Iowa that came out thought we drove too fast on narrow windy roads, so be prepared to feel pushed to drive too fast on the state highway passes, there just aren't enough places to put passing lanes on many of them to suit most people.



My wife has a 2012 MDX, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't consider towing with it, but give it a good try. We're both very curious to find out how it goes.
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Old 07-16-2018, 07:54 AM   #124
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kingpins ?

Originally Posted by SteveNdebbie:
"We had a very uneventful trip from Ohio to Virginia through the Appalachian mountains on route 33 where we were getting some experience with towing. Our gas mileage was pretty bad at only 10-12 miles per gallon but our vehicle and trailer felt very secure with no sway. Sure he could have used a little more torque but I kept the RPMs of our vehicle at around 4000 which is close to the maximum torque at 4500 rpm. The red line is 6300 rpm so the engine revs higher but does not seem to struggle at all. We had new brakes on our MDX but at one section we came upon a 10% grade going downhill for the next 3 miles so we traded drivers and I used the paddle shifters keeping our vehicle in second or third year. She had not used the paddle shifters before. We did not have any hot breaks or change in our temperature gauge at any time.<"

Its always a good trip through West Virginia and Virginia, if it is uneventful.
I don't know how you do it with that four grand + RPM. That would wear me out. I had that before and Can't go back.
I hope you have good luck with the MDX. But I do like the suggestion I saw earlier on a post to borrow your father's truck for comparison towing. You maybe surprised.

The only thing I don't understand, (and this isn't directed to the Original Poster) is why all the hate for trucks with you guys ?
I get it, that a lot of you don't like diesels, apprehension with different technology and propaganda that we 'oil burners' are a bad lot & sacrifice a kitten with each fill up. Beyond that, I have been on other forums and I have never seen the animosity towards trucks and generally towards diesels, like here on this forum.
Blows my mind. Its like, if you have a truck its a 1954 'something' w/bolted together frames, a flat head motor, may-pop tires from China, drum brakes all around and 'kingpins' holding the suspension together, that is getting ready to fly apart and take out a school bus.

I was under my D-ram this past weekend, checking things out and nary a brake drum or kingpin in sight. Our cat was there also, content. ( for a cat)
Seriously, I don't think the build is inadequate. Those welds on the frame are quite accurate. I inspected the springs/shocks, ball joints. I know what wallow-mobile is and that 2500 is not a marshmallow!
There is a lot of technology in a modern truck. D-Ram is not a race car, 'Porsche with a quadraphonic Blaupunkt' but it doesn't pretend to be.
It is very good and it does have dual piston calipers up front. They magically appeared.
I have also seen the 'tail wagging the dog' scenario on the interstate, and its not good.

Safe travels everyone,
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Old 07-16-2018, 10:09 AM   #125
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Just back from weekend camping. Pulled up our 15-18% grade gravel driveway (the same one we go down with the Safari) and maneuvered it into itís spot.Click image for larger version

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Old 07-16-2018, 10:26 AM   #126
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Originally Posted by Tyvekcat View Post
The only thing I don't understand, (and this isn't directed to the Original Poster) is why all the hate for trucks with you guys ?
I think context is important here. The OP wasn't asking whether he should sell his MDX and buy a large pickup. Several posters (most?) immediately started telling him he was wrong to tow with his professionally set up MDX, and that he should get a large truck. That just seems rude.

If someone posted in a new thread that he had a one ton diesel pickup, and wasn't considering changing it, how would a long series of posts telling him to sell it and get a smaller sport utility be received?

What the OP did want was advice on how to respond to his family member who thought that pickups were a better choice. In that sense, many of the posts may help him, because they outline the thinking of the "you really should have a truck" posters.

I think many of the truck fans don't realize how they come across. Some may be honestly motivated by wanting to help, but the OP had spent more time and effort on set up, on getting professional advice and installation service, on using a 3P hitch, than many of the people posting that he doesn't know what he is doing. One posted that he had a pickup, and a low tech hitch, and was worried about control in an evasive manoeuvre. The OP, with a far better handling vehicle to start with, a 3P hitch, and proper setup, is leagues ahead of that poster in being ready for what comes on the road.

Personally, I have nothing against pickups. I have used many of them. If I want to carry 1000 kg with me, it will be the vehicle of choice. But there are just too many compromises for me to want to own one. I used our SUV this weekend for venue setup for a family wedding. We used a new F150 for just one load, the pick up from the florist. The bed was very useful for the open box trays of flowers, and the tonneau kept the wind off them. Everything else went in the BMW. It was good to have the pickup for the long boxes, though.
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Old 07-16-2018, 10:30 AM   #127
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Originally Posted by SteveNdebbie View Post
Just back from weekend camping. Pulled up our 15-18% grade gravel driveway (the same one we go down with the Safari) and maneuvered it into itís spot.Attachment 317125Attachment 317126Attachment 317127Attachment 317128Attachment 317129Attachment 317130Attachment 317131Attachment 317132
That looks good.
I see the wrecker driver is really good, to manuever everything in place so when he dropped your rig off, it looked like you'd backed it in yourself.




Said with tongue firmly in cheek...
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Old 07-16-2018, 10:58 AM   #128
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I am no expert but the way I see it there are going to be trade offs with any tow vehicle. I think the key is to know your safe limits. If you followed my link in post #31 you will see that towing in Europe is much more regulated than it is most places in the US, special licensing for different weight classes and maximum speed limits for trailers.

The safest tow vehicle is probably the one with the driver that knows it's limits, and his limits, and never exceeds them.
(Emphasis added)

IMHO, that is the crux of the matter. A responsible driver will know the limits of the rig, understand the dynamics of the setup, drive defensively, and manage the rig's health and condition as well as manage the DRIVER'S health and condition. This is one of the greater causes of crashes in aviation, and, I'm willing to bet, accidents on the road--

GottaGetThereItis
. Defined as the unreasoning need to make schedule no matter what the conditions and anything else involved in the journey. Weather, traffic, long hours on the road, exhaustion, mechanical issues, you name it, are disregarded because of an irrational and pointless need to get somewhere on time.

A driver in the depths of GottaGetThereItis syndrome is guaranteed to be dangerous to themselves and many innocents around them. It takes a certain level of maturity to avoid this trap. The realization that 'making the next stop' is not worth losing lives or wrecking the rig. The basic understanding that you cannot fight traffic and weather with excessive speed. The idea that returning from the trip in one piece with an immediately reusable rig is far more important to getting somewhere on time. The realization that if you show up to work a day late, but still show up intact, your forewarned boss is not going to be upset.

(If the boss is upset about delays in your return to work due to unforeseen circumstances, you are working for the WRONG person...an important life lesson in any circumstance. Do something about it the moment you discover this...you will be much happier!)

The bottom line is these are recreational vehicles, and not a heavy combat vehicle. You are not required to accomplish some impossible schedule nor are you performing a dangerous mission that will alter the course of human history. You are, hopefully, getting out and going somewhere to do recreational things, or to do exactly nothing but get away from the usual day-to-day stresses. Why shorten your life and add stress by falling victim to GottaGetThereItis?

GottaGetThereItis is a self-imposed disease. Avoid it. Don't plan an impossible trip, stress yourself out, and possibly screw up in a major fashion. Drive reasonably, don't overdo the daily travel distances, and for heaven's sake, get enough rest. Nothing worse than getting back to your 'normal' routine tired, stressed, and prone to bursts of pointless anger because of the lousy 'vacation' you just had. Relax, be responsible, and come back in better shape instead...
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Old 07-16-2018, 11:13 AM   #129
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SteveNDebbie:
My apologies if you thought anything I said was rude. That was never my intent. As I said, concern in a helpful way has been voiced by most posters and I was only trying to help. I am sure you will manage and have a great trip. And it looks like CanAm set you up well, so do let us know how it goes.
I would chime in with some information about roads to take but I think that has been covered now. Have a safe trip.
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Old 07-16-2018, 12:10 PM   #130
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Asking how you should handle senior family members is a question better suited for psychology forums. That said - either borrow the truck and appease him, or drop your father-in-law at the CanAm joint so he can argue with them - not you.
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Old 07-16-2018, 01:32 PM   #131
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SteveNDebbie:
My apologies if you thought anything I said was rude. That was never my intent. As I said, concern in a helpful way has been voiced by most posters and I was only trying to help. I am sure you will manage and have a great trip. And it looks like CanAm set you up well, so do let us know how it goes.
I would chime in with some information about roads to take but I think that has been covered now. Have a safe trip.
Thanks for the apology. I guess I reached my tolerance level of being labeled a threat to all safe travelers by others and may have read more into your post than you intended. So I apologize. And if you have any travel tips or route suggestions I would welcome them.

Steve
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Old 07-16-2018, 02:10 PM   #132
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I am new to Airstream ownership but I would take your father up on the offer to try the F-150 at least on a short trip comparison. Even your driveway towing comparison would be useful. Hitch transfer /setup could be a limiting factor. If you make the comparison please update us.
Also very envious you can park at your place AND have space to shoot hoops.
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Old 07-16-2018, 02:54 PM   #133
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Doesn't your tail wagging the dog story presume that the hitch ball is the pivot point? It isn't, with the P3 hitch the OP is using.


The OP didn't ask for opinions on whether he should be towing with his MDX. He appears to be happy doing so. He asked about driving in the western mountains. If you or other posters have a white knuckle ride, you probably need to pay some attention to your towing setup. Especially those who haven't paid any attention to setup up until now, and rely simply on the mass of the tow vehicle for dynamic stability. Reminds me of those old car advertisements from the 50's, for cars with more road hugging weight.
If you read the OPs original post, of the close to 200 words it contained, less than 20 related to the question of "the Western trip". The rest was about towing a 25" AS with an MDX. The thread was also called, "Acura MDX Towing". If he did not want opinions on towing with his MDX he ought to have said so before 46 posts on the subject to say, "whoa people, that is not what I am looking for". And, perhaps he should have had a different title to the thread. You are right, he seems to be happy enough towing with his MDX. I don't think I am the only one who wished they knew that before getting into a big debate on the merits of towing with an MDX and simply stuck with sharing info related to a Western Trip. That said, it was fun nontheless.
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Old 07-16-2018, 03:38 PM   #134
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Even if he wanted opinions on towing with MDX, likely he would not want to get them from people who always towed with trucks and have no experience whatsoever with SUV/car towing. Ironically, this is over 90% of people discussing in this thread.

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(...) If he did not want opinions on towing with his MDX he ought to have said so before 46 posts on the subject to say, "whoa people, that is not what I am looking for". (...)
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Old 07-16-2018, 03:48 PM   #135
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Even if he wanted opinions on towing with MDX, likely he would not want to get them from people who always towed with trucks and have no experience whatsoever with SUV/car towing. Ironically, this is over 90% of people discussing in this thread.
Welcome to the Internet. If you ask for opinions, you will get them. Given you have zero interest in towing with trucks, should we assume that you’ll avoid participating in those threads?
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Old 07-16-2018, 04:25 PM   #136
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This thread was not focused on towing with trucks. Trucks owners made this thread focused on trucks. I do not even open threads where there is something around trucks mentioned in the topic.

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Welcome to the Internet. If you ask for opinions, you will get them. Given you have zero interest in towing with trucks, should we assume that youíll avoid participating in those threads?
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Old 07-16-2018, 04:58 PM   #137
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Since most cars have independent rear suspension where /how do you come up with the maximum axle capacity? Sorry if this is an obvious Q but I've never given any thought till now how you would approach this.
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Old 07-16-2018, 05:27 PM   #138
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Welcome to the Internet. If you ask for opinions, you will get them. Given you have zero interest in towing with trucks, should we assume that youíll avoid participating in those threads?


You are correct in figuring out that I am happy with how the MDX tows an AS using a Hensley arrow hitch and a professional set-up. What I was confused about was why everyone I know tells me (without my asking) that I shouldnít tow with our Acura through the hills and valleys in Ohio and West Virginia and definitely not out west. I could borrow a truck if I wanted, but the MDX is much more comfortable for us and fun to drive after we disconnect. Also will the MDX lose years of life from towing? Will it start to rattle and squeak? The posts I have seen about the MDX towing across the country have seemed to be positive for those who have done it. I probably should direct some of these questions to Andy T. Like you said, I did ask for opinions . Maybe itís really more about the hitch, the driving style, and just paying attention.

Steve

P.S. My first vehicle I owned was a 1974 Chevy pick up truck with a 350 V8
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Old 07-16-2018, 06:32 PM   #139
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Since most cars have independent rear suspension where /how do you come up with the maximum axle capacity? Sorry if this is an obvious Q but I've never given any thought till now how you would approach this.
That is, believe it or not, a very easy question to answer.
Simply open the driver's door, and look at the weight tag located there. The rear axle capacity will be printed on that label.
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Old 07-16-2018, 06:35 PM   #140
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Steve,

Although I myself have towed with cars, trucks, and SUVs - I haven’t suggested a specific vehicle for you. However, I have recommended that you familiarize yourself with SAE J2807 because it provides a definition for “safe towing”, and exposes its parameters and ratings to consumers. You may find that information here:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f463...ml#post2127262

I suggested this because the gentleman from CanAm is recommending towing arrangements outside this spec - yet I cannot locate any substantive tests that show clear, unbiased testing of his setups.

The second thing I recommended is to either borrow your father-in-law’s truck (as already suggested), or to let him argue the point with CanAm himself. Given how earnestly you have defended towing with an MDX on this forum, one has to wonder why you haven’t responded to him in kind.
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