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Old 10-18-2020, 09:31 AM   #1
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2021 16' Caravel
Stuart , Florida
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Tongue weight in 16' Caravel

Hi, to all. Looking to see if there are any 2020-2021 16' Caravel's that have taken their toung weight empty (AS say it is 490 lbs). And than toung weight after loading for the road / trip.


Still working on what hitch to get. Kind of leaning towards trying the Anderson as I can use a light a hitch has possible and still do the job.


Will be towing with a 2020 Jeep Gladiator Overland. Truck weighs 4,800 lbs empty (but full fuel) and me out of the truck.


Max GVW is 5,800 lbs. So, a 1,000 lbs of bodies and stuff in the Gladiator.



6,000 lb max trailer weight and 600 lb hitch weight.



GCWR is 11,100 lbs. (Truck and Trailer ready to travel)


Thanks for any weights you may have on the 16' 2020-2021 Caravel.
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Old 10-18-2020, 11:21 AM   #2
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You can always pull out your propane tanks and carry them in the box of the truck and drop about 70 lbs. If you plan on switching to Lithium batteries, you could save another ~65 lbs off the tongue. The supplied 2 x AGM batteries on the tongue do add to the tongue weight.

These options may not be what you are planning but I wanted to show you that moving some items around can make a difference.

With our 22'FB Sport, we have a AS published 422 lbs TW but our scale reads it at 500 lbs. I carry a third 20 pounder of propane in my truck box for our fire bowl.

I would try to keep the tongue weight at a minimum of ~500 lbs to maintain stability and minimize the fish tailing potential. Too light a TW can cause fish tailing. Shoot for the upper end of the 10 to 15% guideline.

Then add a WDH that is designed with the tongue weight and GVW of the trailer.
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Old 10-20-2020, 08:56 PM   #3
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2020 16' Caravel
VICTORIA , British Columbia
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My weight

I measured my TW on my new 2020 16 Caravel and it came in higher than I thought it would.This was with full Propane tanks and Water Tanks but no cargo.
My TV is a Porsche Macan S and it definitely was pushing down on the back of the TV. I added a Blue Ox Track Pro Hitch and it levelled out nicely and I really felt the difference . I haven't loaded up the Trailer and my TV yet so I can't comment on how it will change.
Look forward to your observations
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Old 12-13-2020, 08:04 PM   #4
SWH
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2021 Interstate 24GT
Cordova , Tennessee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lockie View Post
I measured my TW on my new 2020 16 Caravel and it came in higher than I thought it would.This was with full Propane tanks and Water Tanks but no cargo.

My TV is a Porsche Macan S and it definitely was pushing down on the back of the TV. I added a Blue Ox Track Pro Hitch and it levelled out nicely and I really felt the difference . I haven't loaded up the Trailer and my TV yet so I can't comment on how it will change.

Look forward to your observations


Wow, Airstream specs list hitch weight as 490 with propane and batteries. Canít imagine water would increase it to 575!?
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Old 12-13-2020, 08:13 PM   #5
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2016 16' Sport
Miami , Florida
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWH View Post
Wow, Airstream specs list hitch weight as 490 with propane and batteries. Canít imagine water would increase it to 575!?
A full tank of water is almost 200 pounds and about as forward as you can get inside the cabin.
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Old 12-14-2020, 08:03 AM   #6
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Without water, hitch weight is 14% of trailer weight (490 lbs hitch weight, 3500 lbs with propane and batteries). Assuming 191 lbs of water increases hitch weight to 575 lbs, that means 45% of the water weight is on the hitch, which is very high. Worse still, by just adding water to the propane and batteries, hitch weight is now over 15.5% of trailer weight, which exceeds the widely accepted 10-15% safe range before any gear is loaded. Is the 16 ft Caravel that unbalanced??

We are purchasing a BMW X5 45e with 7200 lbs towing capacity and 551 max tongue weight. First, I donít understand why the max tongue weight listed is so low on this vehicle, as to me this really means the max tow capacity is 5500 lbs (assuming tongue weight should be at least 10% of trailer weight). More importantly, if tongue weight of 575 lbs with water is correct, even this tiny trailer with a max GVWR of 4300 lbs is too heavy to be pulled by a vehicle advertising a 7200 lbs towing capacity. Frustrating trying to figure all of this out.
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Old 12-14-2020, 08:55 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWH View Post
Without water, hitch weight is 14% of trailer weight (490 lbs hitch weight, 3500 lbs with propane and batteries). Assuming 191 lbs of water increases hitch weight to 575 lbs, that means 45% of the water weight is on the hitch, which is very high. Worse still, by just adding water to the propane and batteries, hitch weight is now over 15.5% of trailer weight, which exceeds the widely accepted 10-15% safe range before any gear is loaded. Is the 16 ft Caravel that unbalanced??

We are purchasing a BMW X5 45e with 7200 lbs towing capacity and 551 max tongue weight. First, I donít understand why the max tongue weight listed is so low on this vehicle, as to me this really means the max tow capacity is 5500 lbs (assuming tongue weight should be at least 10% of trailer weight). More importantly, if tongue weight of 575 lbs with water is correct, even this tiny trailer with a max GVWR of 4300 lbs is too heavy to be pulled by a vehicle advertising a 7200 lbs towing capacity. Frustrating trying to figure all of this out.
Your using the 490 (w/out water) which is from Airstream and 575 (w/water)which is from a forum poster. You would have to have Lockies number with the fresh water tank empty to know the effect of a full water tank.
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Old 12-14-2020, 09:12 AM   #8
SWH
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Cordova , Tennessee
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Although, assuming the weights are correct for the moment, if Iím thinking about it correctly, if the fresh water tank is in front of axle, adding gear could reduce tongue weight if most gear is loaded behind rear axle (even though trailer weight increases). E.g., if 200 lbs is loaded in rear under bed storage, wouldnít hitch weight basically be back to 490?
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Old 12-14-2020, 09:29 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWH View Post
Although, assuming the weights are correct for the moment, if Iím thinking about it correctly, if the fresh water tank is in front of axle, adding gear could reduce tongue weight if most gear is loaded behind rear axle (even though trailer weight increases). E.g., if 200 lbs is loaded in rear under bed storage, wouldnít hitch weight basically be back to 490?
Of course. Anytime you add more weight to one side of a seesaw it reduces the other side. Iím not sure if thatís the correct way to go about solving a weight and balance issue. Iíd first want to start with a hitch that is rated with a bit of wiggle room.
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Old 12-14-2020, 09:36 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWH View Post
Without water, hitch weight is 14% of trailer weight (490 lbs hitch weight, 3500 lbs with propane and batteries). Assuming 191 lbs of water increases hitch weight to 575 lbs, that means 45% of the water weight is on the hitch, which is very high. Worse still, by just adding water to the propane and batteries, hitch weight is now over 15.5% of trailer weight, which exceeds the widely accepted 10-15% safe range before any gear is loaded. Is the 16 ft Caravel that unbalanced??

We are purchasing a BMW X5 45e with 7200 lbs towing capacity and 551 max tongue weight. First, I donít understand why the max tongue weight listed is so low on this vehicle, as to me this really means the max tow capacity is 5500 lbs (assuming tongue weight should be at least 10% of trailer weight). More importantly, if tongue weight of 575 lbs with water is correct, even this tiny trailer with a max GVWR of 4300 lbs is too heavy to be pulled by a vehicle advertising a 7200 lbs towing capacity. Frustrating trying to figure all of this out.
It is frustrating. My personal opinion is to go with the most conservative limit which is the hitch weight. With 50 pounds possibly for a weight distribution hitch and even the factory advertised weight of 490 I wouldnít consider this a good option for a Caravel 16.
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Old 12-14-2020, 11:00 AM   #11
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Cordova , Tennessee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shiny16 View Post
It is frustrating. My personal opinion is to go with the most conservative limit which is the hitch weight. With 50 pounds possibly for a weight distribution hitch and even the factory advertised weight of 490 I wouldnít consider this a good option for a Caravel 16.


I hear you, and that is also my instinct - I want plenty of leeway. But Iíve read also that the BMW US hitch weight limitation is incredibly conservative, and there is conflicting data showing max hitch weight at over 600 lbs. At the end of the day itís hard to argue that I shouldnít be comfortable towing the smallest 3200 lb Caravel with a mid-size/large 7000 lb SUV with a tow rating of 7200 lbs, factory tow package and almost 400 hp. But it does make the decision easy between the 16 RB and the larger Caravel models.
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Old 12-14-2020, 11:52 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWH View Post
I hear you, and that is also my instinct - I want plenty of leeway. But Iíve read also that the BMW US hitch weight limitation is incredibly conservative, and there is conflicting data showing max hitch weight at over 600 lbs. At the end of the day itís hard to argue that I shouldnít be comfortable towing the smallest 3200 lb Caravel with a mid-size/large 7000 lb SUV with a tow rating of 7200 lbs, factory tow package and almost 400 hp. But it does make the decision easy between the 16 RB and the larger Caravel models.
I think the leeway comes in to play because in reality we are not going to weigh the trailer every time we use it. Honestly I would think you would be fine with the 16. Just try not to keep the water full and keep an eye for any signs of stress around the hitch. Personally I prefer something where all the numbers have some more wiggle room. I tend to be extra conservative on these things and maybe worry a bit too much. In the end you have to go with what makes you comfortable or it will be an unpleasant experience.

Iím not sure where you got the 3200 number.
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Old 12-14-2020, 01:00 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shiny16 View Post



Iím not sure where you got the 3200 number.

Actually it should have been 3500... unit base weight with LP and batteries. It was listed as 3200 on a dealer website, but I see Airstreamís website lists it as 3500.
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Old 12-15-2020, 07:27 AM   #14
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2021 16' Caravel
Stuart , Florida
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A few notes on my pick up of a new 16' Caravel

I did pickup my new Caravel 16' with the Jeep Gladiator Overland on Dec 7th in Fort Meyers FL. Traveled back to Stuart, FL stopping at 2 of the Army Core of Engineers sties at the locks coming out of Lake Okeechobee. Super neat sites !! BIG spaces and only $30.00 per night including ELC and Water. $15.00 if you have a SR life pass.

More details coming about weights, etc as soon as I can get to it. A few here.

1. From last Army Core site directly to Stuart, no stops, 162 miles averaged 15.4 MPG (Note: perfectly flat 2 lane roads, speeds between 50-60 mostly 55. 35 going thru a few towns along the way.

2. Towing "on the ball" with no issues what so ever. I would consider a very good trip. Air bags in rear springs with 20lbs of air. Had a few tractor trailers zipping past me at 65+ MPH and easily handled a light sway on a skinny 2 lane road. Speed limit was 55 MPH, which I was doing. Still need to get on the FL Turnpike or I-95 to really judge whether I can continue with towing "on the ball" with no Load Equalizing or Sway control devise.

3. Four Inch drop on the hitch had the trailer and Jeep perfectly level.

4. Tried to up load a picture, could not. But, was surprised that the tongue weight was 560 lbs. 25% water - NO Black-Gray water - few camping items in trailer, nothing in Frig., nothing in rear storage under bed, One full 20 lb tank of Propane and one at 75%. 90 W Solar System with AGM batteries.

5. Actual empty weight (full propane tanks) coming off the production, on the Federal sticker was 3482 lbs.

6. I surely found that the pickup bed on the Gladiator was a God send to store many items that would have ended in the trailer storage places. I got 6 large "RED TOP" Craftsmen (Lowes) storage bins that exactly fit in height so that I could close the folding bed top of the Gladiator. They also filled all the space in the bed. I used each bin as a storage space for specific items. Items such as Honda Gen set, Airstream Weber Gril, Anderson leveling plastic pads, folding chairs, 4' folding table, electrical pig tails, hoses, surge protector, tools, air pump for the lift bags, etc .....

More detail numbers on Gladiator Axel weights, Gladiator GVW with items in pickup bed-2 people & Dog-full fuel, tongue weight. Trailer GVW ready to go camping for 2 weeks.

Bob
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Old 12-16-2020, 04:33 PM   #15
SWH
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2021 Interstate 24GT
Cordova , Tennessee
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Does anyone know how much hitch weight might be reduced by (a) swapping out the steel propane tanks for aluminum (and possibly doing away with the cover); and (b) upgrading to the lithium batteries that are part of the Airstream lithium power plus upgrade (or whatever itís called)?

Iíve read aluminum tanks are ~9 lbs. lighter, so 18 lbs. for two. Iíve also read lithium batteries are lighter, but have no idea what the difference in weight is.

Assuming it wouldnít be a pound for pound reduction in hitch weight, but given both propane and batteries rest on the A-frame, it might be pretty close?

If I could carve off 25 lbs of hitch weight by making these upgrades (would likely do lithium upgrade anyway), they might be worth it.
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Old 12-18-2020, 01:03 PM   #16
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2021 16' Caravel
Stuart , Florida
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weights

Life Line AGM Group 27 100 Amps = 62 lbs each


Battle Born Lith batteries 100 Amps = 31 lbs each.


20 lb steel tank filled = 37 lbs x 2 = 74 lbs



10 lb Aluminum tank filled = 19 lbs x 2 = 38 lbs.


Saving with battery change and 10 lb Alum. tanks = 98 lbs


I am considering 2 x 10 alum tanks. Very easy to carry empty (9.4 lbs) to get filled. Filed 19 lbs.


With no gas frig on my 16' 2021 Caravel, and most always camping in warm Temps, I think I can get away with two x 10 lbs tanks.


Bob
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