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Old 01-18-2022, 07:07 PM   #1
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What about towing with more truck than you need?

This is an unusual situation for me, and most people it seems because I can't find any discussion going this direction.


I recently bought a Flying Cloud 20FB, gross weight 5000 lb. By the numbers and my use to this point, my current truck is capable enough, but closer on payload than I'd like, so I'm considering buying a larger truck.


My question: Are there significant downsides to buying more truck than I need; for example, an F150 with the max payload package (almost 3000 lbs. payload capacity) and max trailer package (almost 8000 lbs more GCWR than my trailer, truck, and gear combined).



I'd rather buy a bigger truck now than wish I had later, but I don't want to get a beefier truck if it will cause issues that I am unaware of.


Thanks.
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Old 01-18-2022, 07:20 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by PrairiePete View Post
This is an unusual situation for me, and most people it seems because I can't find any discussion going this direction.


I recently bought a Flying Cloud 20FB, gross weight 5000 lb. By the numbers and my use to this point, my current truck is capable enough, but closer on payload than I'd like, so I'm considering buying a larger truck.


My question: Are there significant downsides to buying more truck than I need; for example, an F150 with the max payload package (almost 3000 lbs. payload capacity) and max trailer package (4000 lbs more GCWR than my trailer, truck, and gear combined).



I'd rather buy a bigger truck now than wish I had later, but I don't want to get a beefier truck if it will cause issues that I am unaware of.


Thanks.
Pete
If you get the same class of truck eg 150/1500, but with more payload capacity, the downsides will be limited to a rougher ride, and the cost.

If you get a heavier class of truck, chasing payload capacity, you may get a further ride reduction (some dispute this) and you may find the truck less maneuverable (larger turning circle, for example). And more cost. Possibly higher fuel consumption due to dragging around more weight.
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Old 01-18-2022, 07:30 PM   #3
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Pete, you didn’t mention what your current tow vehicle is but those numbers you provided for the F150 are likely published factory numbers and not real world examples. I really doubt you can find a F150 with over 3000 lbs. payload.

Back to your question, most will say it’s better to have too much capacity than not enough. What you really want is that sweet spot, enough extra while not going up a class. For example, we started towing our 27’ Globetrotter with a 1/2 ton truck. It was the best riding 4WD truck I’d driven. Independent front suspension, plenty of power etc.

Then we took it to the CAT scale and found we were 150 lbs. over the rear axle max. The truck’s payload on the door sticker was 1220 lbs. It towed okay but at times felt like the tail was wagging the dog. We now have a 3/4 ton with 2940 lbs. payload but a solid front axle. Trade-offs…

Why don’t you try your current tow vehicle, take it to the CAT scale and see what the numbers are. If you find it doesn’t give you that sweet spot, trade up.

Good luck!
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Old 01-18-2022, 08:23 PM   #4
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I have a 20FB, I’m using a 1500 Sierra crew cab as my TV, they pair well together.

I don’t think you’ll find a payload over 2k w/o going up to a 2500/3500 (or 250/350) instead of a 1500 (or 150).
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Old 01-18-2022, 10:31 PM   #5
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Then I bought my first Rv (1966 25’ Trailwind) I probably could have towed it with a 1500 suburban, but an old timer told me to go up a knotch to a 2500 and I wouldn’t regret it. Aye was right. Alas, having never tried towing my trailer with a 1500 I really don’t know if we would have been happy with a 1500. I did regret not getting 4WD… on the very first trip to the Grand Canyon in Dec 1998, we stumbled onto 21 inches of snow in Tucumcary NM and got stuck trying to get in and out of the camp site. We had to walk to the local hardware store for a pair of shovels (a which we still own and use today) and spent the night at a hotel instead of camping. Memorable times.
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Old 01-19-2022, 04:09 AM   #6
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I don't think there is such thing as "too much truck". If money is not an issue (yea, I said that out loud) and you think there is a reasonable chance you may upgrade your trailer anytime soon, I think a 3/4 ton truck is the way to go. I know there are 1/2 max tow trucks out there, but I am super happy with my RAM 2500 Diesel. Unless I ever get a hankering to buy a 5th wheel, I think I have just about any other kind of travel trailer covered. The truck is wonderful to drive. Smooth and rock steady on the road. I have to keep my speed in check because I can easily hit 80MPH if I'm not paying attention. There's always the gas/diesel discussion as far as milage, cost of ownership and payload since that engine steals about 800 pounds of payload from the specs. The max tongue weight is 2000 pounds, which again should cover just about anything I'd care to tow.
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Old 01-19-2022, 05:05 AM   #7
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The stories our grandparents told us really should be taught in business school. The stories varied a little from country to country, but there are lots of variations of Eggs in one basket, boys crying wolf, the value of unhatched chickens and birds in bushes, ... and Goldilocks.

A little extra capacity under normal circumstances is (for me) the right size for that 10% of the time things go off-nominal. For the 2% where things go badly off nominal, we park. Not everyone does.

At a 19 or 20' I'd probably find Goldilocks asleep in the half ton but your culture might tell that story differently.
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Old 01-19-2022, 05:20 AM   #8
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According to Wikipedia, the original story of the 3 bears went like this.

"In Robert Southey's version of the tale, three anthropomorphic bears – "a little, small, wee bear, a middle-sized bear, and a great, huge bear" – live together in a house in the woods. Southey describes them as very good-natured, trusting, harmless, tidy, and hospitable. Each of these "bachelor" bears has his own porridge bowl, chair, and bed. One day they make porridge for breakfast, but it is too hot to eat, so they decide to take a walk in the woods while their porridge cools. An old woman approaches the bears' house. She has been sent out by her family because she is a disgrace to them. She is impudent, bad, foul-mouthed, ugly, dirty, and a vagrant deserving of a stint in the House of Correction. She looks through a window, peeps through the keyhole, and lifts the latch. Assured that no one is home, she walks in. The old woman eats the Wee Bear's porridge, then settles into his chair and breaks it. Prowling about, she finds the bears' beds and falls asleep in Wee Bear's bed. The end of the tale is reached when the bears return. Wee Bear finds his empty bowl, his broken chair, and the old woman sleeping in his bed and cries, "Somebody has been lying in my bed, and here she is!" The old woman wakes, jumps out the window and is never seen again."

I'll leave it at that
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Old 01-19-2022, 07:01 AM   #9
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I have a 25' GT and a 5.7 Tundra, and have towed the trailer home once from Colonial in NJ.

The truck towed fine and felt good, set up with an Equalizer hitch.

But my truck is a 2007, with 115,000 miles, and it definitely has limited payload capacity.

I have what I have, and will live with it for now, but when the time comes that I can afford a new tow vehicle I will get an F-350 with 7.3L gas engine. Crew Cab. 8" bed. I want to have extra payload capacity, even after putting a cap on it, carrying a couple of kayaks, portable grill, maybe a generator, two dogs (combined weight of about 125lbs). couple of bicycles, myself and my wife, etc. I do not want to even think about payload.

I have read about larger trucks with very heavy duty rear suspensions (F-450, maybe even F-350) being too harsh on the trailer, though. This is something I will do more research on...the purchase is a long way off for sure.

Our plans for next season are trips not really farther than 6 hours away...one to Cape May , one to Cape Cod (one week each, both in June), two weeks near Ocean City in September, and probably two more week long trips...maybe the Adirondacks or Finger Lakes, and to see my buddy @TooTall in one of his top secret spots.

Longer trips, like Florida Keys or out West, will have to wait for the new TV, and a little more experience with the trailer I think.

SPP
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Old 01-19-2022, 07:15 AM   #10
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I don't see anyone mentioning the 800# gorilla.
If your tow vehicle is also your daily driver, are you willing to put up with parking, getting in and out, extra insurance, rough ride, reduced fuel mileage?
Many here have lots of disposable income and they have a truck to tow with and a Mercedes to get groceries. I don't. I can't wrap my mind around driving a F-250/350/450 every day. "Bring the stepladder, I need to get in".
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Old 01-19-2022, 07:32 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Mollysdad View Post
I don't see anyone mentioning the 800# gorilla.
If your tow vehicle is also your daily driver, are you willing to put up with parking, getting in and out, extra insurance, rough ride, reduced fuel mileage?
Many here have lots of disposable income and they have a truck to tow with and a Mercedes to get groceries. I don't. I can't wrap my mind around driving a F-250/350/450 every day. "Bring the stepladder, I need to get in".
I daily drive (winter) our F250 TV and it works for me. I'm used to sports cars so the ride seems fine, and I always park at the edge of parking lots anyway. And I love the diesel engine! But it is a personal preference (I do have to get out a step stool to scrape the windshield!).
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Old 01-19-2022, 07:49 AM   #12
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I daily drive (winter) our F250 TV and it works for me. I'm used to sports cars so the ride seems fine, and I always park at the edge of parking lots anyway. And I love the diesel engine! But it is a personal preference (I do have to get out a step stool to scrape the windshield!).
Same here. My 3500 Duramax is my daily driver and I smile every time I climb into it. Yes, I said climb.
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Old 01-19-2022, 09:14 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mollysdad View Post
I don't see anyone mentioning the 800# gorilla.
If your tow vehicle is also your daily driver, are you willing to put up with parking, getting in and out, extra insurance, rough ride, reduced fuel mileage?
Many here have lots of disposable income and they have a truck to tow with and a Mercedes to get groceries. I don't. I can't wrap my mind around driving a F-250/350/450 every day. "Bring the stepladder, I need to get in".
I share Mollysdad’s perspective. Your tow vehicle becomes your every day driver. What do you want to drive around when not towing? Im currently at the limits using an f150 as my tow vehicle. I have owned an f350, and it’s huge. I would inherit every trip to Target or grocery runs due to my wife’s refusal of navigating the parking lots in an f350. If I had a 20FB, I would tow it with a Jeep Gladiator. I like the rugged look, convertible top and agile handling.
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Old 01-19-2022, 09:34 AM   #14
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In the Ford line you sorta trade features for payload capacity. It comes down to things like the moonroof or another 150lbs payload. I do not think you will need a 250 with that trailer unless you are going to carry a motorcycle or something else heavy. If you are going to put on a high cap and carry a full set of tools and a big generator then a 250 maybe. And right the market might affect what you can actually get. I know a couple who pull a Bambi with a diesel 250. But..,they both have Porsche’s as daily drivers. It is your gig. I do not know how to estimate resale but it is my guess that capable pulling trucks will greatly increase in cost new and used in the next few years.
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Old 01-19-2022, 09:50 AM   #15
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Things to think about....if you are comfortable with a smaller TV on sunny dry roads without a breeze; Would you be comfortable with that same TV when the 18 wheeler passes you, or you are driving through the heartland prairie and get wind whipped passing a grain elevator, or coming down a mountain pass on a rain slick highway....

Error on the side of caution and get all of the muscle (power for climbing hills or passing someone who speeds up and won't let you back in lane) additional frame and body strength, more braking....

Remember you do not need it until you need it and then you will be glad that you have it.

And who knows, you may decide at a later date to upsize your Airstream; the F250 or GM2500 is a good choice for all of them up to and including the 30 footers; if you are considering a 33; then the F350/GM3500. I like the Diesel vs gas for pulling power.
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Old 01-19-2022, 09:53 AM   #16
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Hi

If you go to an F250 and get the Limited trim package on it, you can easily get to the point that the payload sticker shows well under 2,000 pounds. Folks have posted examples that are under 1,500 pounds.

There is no "one number" for payload that applies to all F150's, F250's, F350's or F450's. You need to get into the grubby details of *your* truck sitting in your driveway. The yellow sticker on the door post is the thing to trust, not some number somewhere on the internet.

Indeed, things like turning radius and tire size probably can be looked up on the internet with some level of care. That leads us into a false belief that we can look up towing info as well.

Some families with a reasonable number of members (human + animal) come in well over 1,000 pounds. Others barely break 300 pounds (it's claimed ... I have no hard evidence this actually is possible ). Both will fit in this or that truck cab. One will be soaking up a lot more payload than the other.

Do you put a cover on the truck? How about a cap? How fancy is the version you picked. Weight comes along as you do this. Caps in the "couple hundred pounds" range are not at all uncommon.

If you are towing you will have a shank and a hitch. Each one weighs something. Coming in under a hundred pounds is rare. Being over a couple hundred also is unusual for a simple WD hitch.

If you are following the math, we just put a hypothetical family into a F250 ( plus a cap, plus hitch) and maxed out it's payload. There is no trailer. There is no gear. The truck is at max already. Time to go get an F350 ..... (if you really need that Limited package and other bling ).

The only way to know what works for you is to do *your* math.

Bob
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Old 01-19-2022, 09:54 AM   #17
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Never too much truck

We went from a 6.3 L Yukon XL to a GMC 3500 with the Duramax/Allison transmission. It's a beast that relieves any concern about pulling hills and road stability. Diesel mileage isn't great, but it's worth it to us. We pull a 27 FB Flying Cloud.
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Old 01-19-2022, 11:11 AM   #18
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My story is pretty much the same as JEFMC306 and I agree with his advice. I switched from a max tow, max payload F150 to a GMC 2500 Duramax after several visits to CAT scales with the Ford. I've weighed the GMC--all good.

The GMC weighs 8,000 lbs empty. My 25FC weighs about 6,500 ready to travel. I use an Andersen hitch. This rig is rock sold in any wind condition I have encountered including the Prince Edward Island Confederation Bridge at just below the 70 km/h crosswind max.

The footprint of the F150 and 2500 is almost identical but the 2500 is a lot taller. I think the GMC ride is equivalent to the Ford. I love the diesel. I compute mileage at every fill. I get about 14 MPG on calm flat land and never less than 10 except for the 40-50 MPH head wind in Newfoundland.

I don't think you would regret have more truck than you "need".
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Old 01-19-2022, 11:39 AM   #19
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Thanks for the replies

Since I have it set up the way I like, and it seems to be getting the job done, I'll keep using my current TV until it tells me it's not enough.


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Old 01-19-2022, 12:19 PM   #20
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I'm a GMC fan, but that would be especially true in an HD truck because the GMC and Chevy HD trucks utilize an independent front suspension and not a solid front axle configuration. They actually ride pretty nicely considering their capability. I live in a rural setting, so a truck as a daily driver isn't a big deal. I wouldn't want to have a big truck as my only vehicle, especially if I lived in the city. If I ever get into a situation where I need a car as a daily driver and I can't keep a truck to tow, then I'll buy a motorhome and not worry about it anymore.
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