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Old 04-27-2015, 07:10 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by JBBeaubeaux View Post
Please tell me a little bit more about why you think an 8 foot bed is superior to a shorter bed
We have the eight foot bed on our F-250 and we like it because #1 we carry four bicycles plus generator, chairs and camping gear, a standard or short bed would not accommodate our cargo needs, #2 the long bed comes with a longer wheelbase which makes for a more stable towing experience. The latter issue is a subtle one and likely most people would not notice the difference 99% of the time.
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Old 04-27-2015, 07:13 AM   #22
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I really appreciate all the advice I've been receiving.

We just got back from the RAM dealer and discovered that the headroom is unsatisfactory for my tall wife, so we're going to focus exclusively on the Ford F250 with the diesel. We had the same situation with the tundra by Toyota and I've always been a Ford man so that's the direction we're going.

Any advice on what to look for specifically on a Ford F250 diesel maybe a year or two old would be greatly appreciated
We love our 2015 F-250 Platinum Crew Cab Long Bed Diesel! The new (to 2015) diesel engine is very sweet and could pull a house of it's foundation if needed.
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Old 04-27-2015, 11:36 AM   #23
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My 2004 5.9L RAM 2500 hauls my 29' quite well, that's with a short bed and quad cab. I considered the long bed (as I'm also hauling drywall and plywood when not in camping mode), but it's already a hassle pulling into parking lots.

I put a tuner on the truck, and got much better mileage and no loss of power in Full Economy mode. I also have a cab-high shell (I haul kayaks), and a home-made bed slide. Both of these are very necessary for me!
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Old 04-27-2015, 12:20 PM   #24
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We pull a 30 with a 2011 F150 Ecoboost, 6.5 bed, and max tow. It has a payload of 1735. Plenty of power, smooth sailing. 10-11 mpg. I usually cruise about 68 mph.
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Old 04-27-2015, 12:42 PM   #25
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I'm getting a lot of conflicting messages
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Old 04-27-2015, 01:01 PM   #26
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You have chosen an excellent tow vehicle.
However, your new Airstream can be towed by many modern 1/2 ton trucks.
It is your money. You can do as you wish. You will never be dissatisfied with the RAM 2500 diesel. It will always do what you ask it to do. You will always have plenty of "headroom".
4 wheel drive is a good idea. It's better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. I may never buy another truck in my lifetime as my 2007 has 46,000 miles, but if I ever do buy another truck it will be 4 wheel drive.
As I said earlier, you have chosen well.
Congrtulations on your new trailer! Get a tow vehicle and go campn'!
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Old 04-27-2015, 01:18 PM   #27
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Re long box versus regular, I guess the decision would largely be influenced by what other use you intend to make of the longer box and how much stuff you take on camping trips.

We bought the regular (short?) box / crew cab configuration and find that for us it is probably the best compromise.

A previous truck (1500) we owned had the half doors in the back and they were a pain. also we prefer having ore inside space in the cab for "secure" storage.

Since we use our truck as a daily driver, we do find that its longer wheelbase (longer than our previous 1500) makes it a bit of a pig for parking sometimes. My wife complains about that more than I do, mainly because I never even try to find a spot near the mall doors - I just go the far end row away from the mall where parking is much easier (and I m less likely to get door dings!).

I'm sure my wife would complain all the more with a long box - and more still if it was a dually!

So for us, what we have is likely the best compromise. We take a lot of stuff on our RV trips, more than we really should, but have never had a space problem to carry it all. We have a cap on the track bed which works out well for us.

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Old 04-27-2015, 04:26 PM   #28
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Like previous post - hard to understand headroom in the RAM. I am 6' 1" and my son is 6' 3" and both of us have a ton of space above our head (we have a 2013 2500 RAM Diesel). Love the gas mileage when towing - almost as if I am not towing anything. Also - took it over some passes this last weekend, and power to spare (and temperature stayed virtually the same).

Go Diesel!
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Old 04-27-2015, 04:46 PM   #29
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I drive a 2008 F350 diesel crew cab short bed, 4WD, not a dually. (No Airstream yet, but I'm working on that.) I've hauled several different types of trailers with it and really like it. Some thoughts: (1) We went to the short bed after having a long bed, because of the long turning radius on the long bed. Friends who have switched back to long beds from short beds tell me that somehow, modifications have been made on the long beds to address the turning radius issue, so that it is easier to maneuver in tight spaces, so you might want to try both. (2) A friend recently purchased a F250 and had a mechanic add one leaf to each side of the rear springs. He tells me that makes it the equivalent of a F350 in terms of towing capacity. (He tows a lot of heavy loads.) If that works, it's a lot cheaper than buying the F350. (3) When driving in Tow/Haul mode, my transmission used to downshift too easily on downhill runs, ramping up the gas consumption. Now, I keep gentle pressure on the brakes before the rig builds up too much speed, and that tends to keep the transmission from downshifting too much. (4) I don't recommend a dually. I have never driven one, but have been told that the wheels tend to hang off the road on tight turns. Also, they take up more space. They certainly haul a lot more, but I don't think you need that much capacity for what you will be towing. There's my two cents.
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Old 04-27-2015, 04:55 PM   #30
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Yes, so many opinions. I have pulled a 30 ft. Classic about 30,000 miles over the last 5 years with a 1/2ton pickup with a gas engine (5.7 Toyota and 5.3 Chav.) I think a bigger truck is over kill and a waste of money.
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Old 04-27-2015, 06:02 PM   #31
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I have towed about 36,000 miles with my Tundra 5.7. It does a great job. If I had to buy another truck, it would be a silver CrewMax Platinum 4x4.


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Old 04-27-2015, 06:13 PM   #32
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Despite the fact that I'm a light vehicle person, for Full Timing you will be better off with the 3/4 ton. The only down side will be the harsher ride....but I'm only going on hearsay. Newer vehicles have come a long way in the comfort dept...maybe some of you with the bigger trucks can weigh in...for my Wife the stiff ride of a 3/4 ton truck is out of the question. Not to mention the agility to get into it.

You can still get a one ton with single rear wheels and there is more load capacity at least on the older models
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Old 04-27-2015, 07:00 PM   #33
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I pulled my 1978 31' AS over 12000 miles with my 1999 GMC 1/2 to 2 wheel drive last summer my trip to YK was over 7000 mi with no problems. I had that truck from new until Feb and I finally decided to get another GMC 1/2 2wd its new so I'm excited about getting them introduced and see how they like each other. lol
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Old 04-27-2015, 08:17 PM   #34
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Bev do you have a before and after pic, old PU and new PU? Would be great to see.
(Sorry for thread hijack)
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Old 04-28-2015, 02:15 AM   #35
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Ford to Dodge to GMC

Though I'm a class A Airstreamer, my other toy is a 38' Fountain Lightning racing boat. My first TV was a Ford F-350 but I traded that for a mover powerful Dodge 3500 Ram diesel manual. That thing had so much torque if I wasn't towing I didn't need 1st or 2nd gear. The thing was so powerful that without something behind it it was actually uncomfortable to drive...very jerky. And as I'm 6'2 the headroom wasn't all that great.

My current TV is a GMC 3500 Sierra Denali diesel. I absolutely love it. I have a Hummer H1 and H2 in my fleet so I've always been fond of GM. But the Denali is so comfortable I use it as a daily driver sometimes. I personally think they have the best interior on the market. And the damn thing can tow anything. I can go uphill towing a 38' boat with ease.

Welcome to the Airstream family!
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Old 04-28-2015, 04:50 AM   #36
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Take a close look at the new F150. I have towed with several of these now and they are quite impressive. The aluminum body helps it in two areas, the center of gravity is noticeably lower which improves handling. The lighter body also gives the F150 all the payload you will ever need towing a 30' Airstream.

The other huge benefit is independent front suspension. This widens the front suspension stance by 18", the rear spring and shock placements are wider as well. Besides handling any emergency situation better the more precise steering box gives you more control just heading straight down the road.

Because the suspension is matched more closely to the load being carried and partially due to less un-sprung weight it is much easier on your Airstream.

You can likely spec out an F150 new for less cost than the used diesel. Myself I would buy the 5.0 Litre motor but there are many that love the echoboost.

Just something to consider.

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Old 04-28-2015, 06:29 AM   #37
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My two cents. Own and tow with a 09 Dodge 3/4 ton Diesel 4x4, no issues in six years. I debated long between 2 or 4 wheel drive, co workers who have owned diesels for years convinced me to get the 4x4 due to the weight of the engine, the front ends tend to sink in soft ground due to the weight. They were right, front end has sunk (got stuck) several times in boondocking campgrounds, just engage 4 wheel drive and out came truck and trailer. Just the cost and time to get a tow truck to pull you out in some remote area will justify the 4x4.
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Old 04-28-2015, 06:42 AM   #38
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TV and Trailer

Dream Truck would be FORD Body, Cummins Engine, and a Allison transmission
Picture of My truck and Trailer.
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Old 04-28-2015, 06:42 AM   #39
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All of what everyone says is true, BUT my biggest concern is stopping. What I own is not for everybody. I carry my tools with me because I do repair work. I am a ASE MAster mechanic and am going to get my master RV certification.I custom built this truck and have the same wheel base as a 4 door Ford 350. I have a 55 degree turning radius and a motor that should last 1 million miles(if maintained). I get 11.8 MPG which I hear most don't get even that. I also spent just under 100k on it brand new. The decision is yours on what you get. But if you want to full time you will need room for stuff to boondock for extended time. Get a 3/4 or higher and put a reading service body on the back(comes in aluminum). Enjoy
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Old 04-28-2015, 01:49 PM   #40
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We considered a variety of 1/2 ton options in preparation for towing a 30' Airstream. Our conclusion was that the 1/2 ton options, while adequate, fell far too close to being maxed out, particularly with regard to carrying capacity.

In the end, we went with the new Sierra Denali HD (3/4 ton, 4x4) with Duramax Diesel and Allison transmission. We don't have the Airstream yet, but we are really loving the truck as a daily driver. Very comfortable to drive and fun, as well. Crew cab is very spacious and luxurious. Bed is 6 1/2', a nice happy medium for us. Of course it's not quick to shoehorn into tiny parking spaces, so we don't bother with those, we just pick a better spot for parking.

I'm confident that this truck will be more than well-suited to towing a 30' Airstream pretty much anywhere.

These are not inexpensive, but if the budget can swing it, they're fabulous trucks.

Our truck:


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