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Old 02-10-2013, 05:26 PM   #1
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Question for older Hurricane owners

I just wonder what the tow rating for older Hurricanes is. My 2001 29D has a tow rating of only 3500 lb, but it is sitting on the F53 chassis that has a GCWR of 26000 lb. This means, the brakes and every other Ford supplied part is as capable as any motorhome that can tow 5000 lb! In fact, because the 29D is rather light weight, it could tow 10,000 lb!

Do to no real reason, Four Winds decided to put a 3500 lb hitch underneath it. has anybody a clue why this is? Is there any way to increase the tow rating? I would like to pull a 4000 lb vehicle behind the motorhome.

Has anybody dome any modifications to their Hurricane?
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:21 PM   #2
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Find your Motorhome weight specification chart. They usually put it on the inside of a closet or pantry door.

You can not exceed your GCWR (Gross combined vehicle Weight Rating) That is the weight of your Motorhome Loaded and with a tow trailer or toad.

I think you will find the difference between your GVWR ( gross Vehicle Weight Rating) and your GCWR is only 3500 LBs.

It is your motohome, if you want to upgrade to a 5000 lb hitch and tow a 4000 lb toad. go for it. If you stay under your GCWR should be no problem. If you exceed it, and get involved in an accident, could be a problem.

If it were me, I would weigh the MH and if I had at least 500lb under my GVWR and 4000 lbs does not exceed my GCVWR, I would probably add a stiffener or two and a few welds to the existing hitch and tow the 4000 lb vehicle. Just my opinion, someone else will chime in and say I am stupid for suggesting you could do this.
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:06 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgscott4 View Post
Find your Motorhome weight specification chart. They usually put it on the inside of a closet or pantry door.

You can not exceed your GCWR (Gross combined vehicle Weight Rating) That is the weight of your Motorhome Loaded and with a tow trailer or toad.

I think you will find the difference between your GVWR ( gross Vehicle Weight Rating) and your GCWR is only 3500 LBs.
That is the thing I don't get here. I have a GCWR of 26,000 lb and the GVWR is 15,700. Theoretically that would allow me to tow 10,300 lb!And they put a 3500 lb hitch under it!

Quote:
If it were me, I would weigh the MH and if I had at least 500lb under my GVWR and 4000 lbs does not exceed my GCVWR, I would probably add a stiffener or two and a few welds to the existing hitch and tow the 4000 lb vehicle. Just my opinion, someone else will chime in and say I am stupid for suggesting you could do this.
That is probably the route I will go.
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:45 AM   #4
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You need someone with a ford chassis to respond.

My 2006 Hurricane is on a Workhorse chassis, (W20). I have GVWR of 20,700 lb and a GCWR of 26000 lb. I weigh in @ around 18000 lb and tow a 3400 lb Chevy Malibu on a hitch rated for 5000 lb for a combined around 21,400, well below my limit too.
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Old 02-16-2013, 05:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgscott4 View Post
You need someone with a ford chassis to respond.

My 2006 Hurricane is on a Workhorse chassis, (W20). I have GVWR of 20,700 lb and a GCWR of 26000 lb. I weigh in @ around 18000 lb and tow a 3400 lb Chevy Malibu on a hitch rated for 5000 lb for a combined around 21,400, well below my limit too.
It looks like nobody with F53 Hurricane is here anymore.
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Old 02-16-2013, 05:53 PM   #6
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try posting this on the Ford Chassis forum...
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Old 02-16-2013, 09:00 PM   #7
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try posting this on the Ford Chassis forum...
It's not a Ford problem because they did not put the frame extensions and the hitch on. That was a For Winds (Thor) thing.
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Old 02-17-2013, 08:26 AM   #8
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but isnt the gvwr and gcwr a chassis thing... in the end its what the chassis can haul. Hitches are relatively inexpensive and its a bolt on... you can prob bolt on a 10k lb hitch and call it a day witout any welding and reenforcement.
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Old 02-17-2013, 08:55 AM   #9
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I just checked my brochure for the 2004 models and the specs for the 29D are the same as Hudsoner's year. The difference between gvwr and gcwr is 10,000 lbs. So the question of a low capacity hitch is a very good one. If no frame extensions were used on that model then it's a very, very good question. Maybe the hitch was dealer installed and they took the cheap way out. I would agree that installing a 5K hitch should be no problem.
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Old 02-18-2013, 05:45 AM   #10
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but isnt the gvwr and gcwr a chassis thing... in the end its what the chassis can haul. Hitches are relatively inexpensive and its a bolt on... you can prob bolt on a 10k lb hitch and call it a day witout any welding and reenforcement.
As jrd48 wrote, the chassis is not a problem. I have 10 k lb left between gvwr and gcwr. Theoretically I could put on a 10 k lb hitch.

The current hitch was installed by Thor, and in their what ever thinking, they put a 3500 lb hitch under it. I contacted them and asked if I could put a 5 k lb hitch under it, and they told me they do not give information on those subjects.

The vehicle has a frame extension that is about three feet long, and is bolted and welded on with two relatively beefy gusset plates. All the stuff I remeber from my long ago happened college education as an engineer, tell me that it should be strong enough to pull an extra 1500 lb. Even the hitch itself looks no different than the 5 k lb hitch I have on the vehicle (Jeep) that is to be pulled, the Jeep has just one more set of bolts.

To have an extra margin of safety, I would be willing to weld another gusset plate onto the extension, make sure that all the other welds are well done, and install a 5 k lb hitch.

What could go wrong with such a setup?
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Old 02-18-2013, 12:40 PM   #11
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As jrd48
What could go wrong with such a setup?
What about hitch height, overhang, togue weight... in other words, factors that is outside of the hitch itself... the setup you described seems to be beefy enough for the additional 1500lbs.
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Old 02-18-2013, 09:26 PM   #12
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What about hitch height, overhang, togue weight... in other words, factors that is outside of the hitch itself... the setup you described seems to be beefy enough for the additional 1500lbs.
The overhang is rather short, only about three feet more than the original Ford chassis that is rated for a GCVW of 26,000 lb.

Tongue weight would only be the weight of the tow bar for 4 down towing.
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Old 02-27-2013, 05:21 PM   #13
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I suspect the extensions are the problem and how it effects the overall geometry of the chassis particularly behind the rear axle. Makes for a pretty long lever for lateral forces to push the rear end around and maybe flex the frame beyond designed limits.

If you drop the fuel tank and box the frame up to the axle you should be good to go for a 5K hitch. Also my 2006 18K Lbs. chassis has a 5K hitch. Not sure when the change happened. Ford's only guidance is to not exceed the GCWR of 26K Lbs. as far back as 2002.
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Old 02-28-2013, 07:59 AM   #14
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I suspect the extensions are the problem and how it effects the overall geometry of the chassis particularly behind the rear axle. Makes for a pretty long lever for lateral forces to push the rear end around and maybe flex the frame beyond designed limits.

If you drop the fuel tank and box the frame up to the axle you should be good to go for a 5K hitch. Also my 2006 18K Lbs. chassis has a 5K hitch. Not sure when the change happened. Ford's only guidance is to not exceed the GCWR of 26K Lbs. as far back as 2002.
I think you are correct, I, too, believe the extensions (or the way they are attached) are the problem. I have very short extensions welded and bolted to the end of the frame supplied by Ford. The Ford part is the standard GCWR frame of 26k, which means, it is the same frame (albeit the short 190" version) that resides under any motorhome that is using the Food chassis, and thus, the transmission as well as the brakes can easily handle a 5k hitch.

I really think that some relative simple welding should strengthen those extensions enough that they can handle an additional 1.5 k lb weight for towing. I also believe one can forget about any tongue weight restrictions because flat towing has only a tongue weight that is a fraction of the towing setup, and certainly less than the currently allowed 300 lb.

The force that is to be considered is the pulling load or tensile strength of the frame extensions.
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