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Old 04-11-2016, 06:00 PM   #1
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Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 108
Our First Adventure

To bring ya'll up to speed:
Wife and I are getting out of boating and into RV'ing. We are researching RV brands and deciding what fits us. TV is a 2013 F150 rated to 7700 pounds. We have placed a dry weight limit of 6k on ourselves. We have looked at lots of RV stores and attended an RV show. We decided to rent an RV that weighed 6300 pounds and drag it from Sherman, Texas to Mena, Arkansas to determine if 6K was a good limit for us.


Wife and I showed up at the RV rental place at 8:45, traffic had us a wee bit later than 8:30.
We signed the paperwork and there was some confusion on what a deposit was and what a rental charge was. I think the kid behind the counter was still a little green. We finally get things resolved and we back our truck up to a Wildwood 29 foot bunk house. We start the check out and I point out that one of the stabilizer jacks up front is bent under. They say no problem, we won't charge you for that. I ask them if maybe I might need to use that when camping. Guy decides to check with the boss. Boss has left to run an errand. We continue the check out. Find pots and pans left from previous renters and floor has not been swept.

Finally the manager for rental operations comes over and apologizes, says unit was not properly checked in last time and if we could maybe get some breakfast by the time we get back they would have the jack replaced and the unit cleaned. We went for breakfast.

Getting back from breakfast they were still washing the outside of the RV. We meet with the owner of the business and she is real apologetic. They finish cleaning the RV as she gives us her personnel phone number for the trip if anything goes wrong. This is a the location business.

We hook up the WDH to my truck. They briefly show me how and I ask lots of questions, which they answer in a nice manner.

We hook up the lights and brakes. Lights work but my factory system says no trailer exists back there. I notice the have an after market unit plugged into the system, I ask if maybe having the AM unit plugged into a factory unit was a problem. They guy tells me the running lights work so he did not think so. Lights and brakes share nothing circuit wise so the send a tech out who glances at the AM unit and says that has to come out if the vehicle is factory equipped. VIOLA!

I take the rig around the block to test the brakes. I find setting the gain at 6 seems to give balance braking and when manually applying trailer brakes they are linear in their response.

So we hit the road.

The first hour or so it is kind of different but we soon adjust to the different feel and are comfortable. Making sharp turns does cause the WDH to pop and groan but nothing bad.

We cruise through the corner of Oklahoma and into Arkansas on some good two lane highways. When we cross into Arkansas we get into some twisty roads. Just inside the OK/AR border we hit some tight turns with bumpy pavement. The trailer started to sway. Just as I started to feather the trailer brakes and tap the vehicle brakes the truck responded and then kicked off the cruise control. Overall I was impressed.

We towed for several house. GPM ranged from 8.5 on 87 octane gasahol to 11.0 on 93 octane straight gas. Truck seemed to prefer the 93 as it did not down shift as much on the hills.

We stayed one night at Brady's Mouintain and two nights at Treasure Island, both in the Ouachita National Forest area. We walked around and introduced ourselves to folks, all were eager to give us the benefit of their wisdom in all the RV'ing.

Overall the mission was a success. I am confident that a dry weight of 6K or there about will be acceptable for us.

I need to learn how to properly setup a WDH as they just stabbed in what they had and made no adjustments to the unit when hooking it up. I doubt my truck had the same tongue height as what the WDH was set up for. The front tires of the trailer were a bit hotter than the rear and the trailer seemed to be nose down.

Any comments or questions? Feel free to chime in.

"Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most"
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Old 04-11-2016, 06:17 PM   #2
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Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Salvisa, KY
Posts: 1,515

Any comments or questions? Feel free to chime in.[/QUOTE]

I would seriously consider spending the extra money and purchasing a Hensley Arrow hitch. We pulled a 27.5' Prowler TT with a 2006 Ford F-350 and had absolutely NO SWAY! TT empty was around 7400 lbs, loaded around 9500 lbs. It pulled straight, braked perfectly in line, and wind did not seem to affect it! Well worth the money in my book. I would not pull a travel trailer now without it! Naysayers typically have never owned, or never towed with one. They cost $2,500 rebuilt from Hensley, or you can sometimes find them for around $1,000.00 used.

Glad you enjoyed your first outing, no go out there and buy a rig of your own!

Scot & Laura Kellersberger
2001 Newmar 4 wheel drive Dutch Star 3891, 2005 GMC Canyon. Demco Tow Bar & Baseplate U.S.Army (ret)
1985 - 2006
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Old 04-11-2016, 06:51 PM   #3
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Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 108
Thanks for the brand recommendation on the WDH...
"Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most"
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