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Old 04-29-2013, 06:13 PM   #1
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backup questions

So we have own a coleman tent trailers with a single axle which has a total
length of 19 feet. I have owned it since 2001, 12 years and can backup pretty easy these days. While understand there was a learning curve when
I started back in 2001.

Now we have out lived our tent trailer and have upgrade to a new travel
trailer with a super slideout. This new trailers has t total length of 31 feet with the tongue. Plus it has a dual axle wheel system.

So how difficult is backing up this unit going be with my truck in comparison.

Will the dual axle make a difference?

Any tips?
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:20 PM   #2
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You should find it easier. In general, the longer the trailer, the easier it is to back up. Shorter wheelbase will get out of shape much easier than the longer trailer. Also need to understand the longer rear overhang and consequent wider turning circle.
Just make sure your truck and hitch are rated for the increased weight.
The tandem axel will result in some tire scrubbing on tight turns but nothing major provided the truck is up to it.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:03 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chawkins99 View Post
You should find it easier. In general, the longer the trailer, the easier it is to back up. Shorter wheelbase will get out of shape much easier than the longer trailer. Also need to understand the longer rear overhang and consequent wider turning circle.
Just make sure your truck and hitch are rated for the increased weight.
The tandem axel will result in some tire scrubbing on tight turns but nothing major provided the truck is up to it.
I haven't owned a TT since 1988 but the advice above is good. I find it hard to backup my utility trailer compared to my old 26' TT.
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Old 04-29-2013, 08:09 PM   #4
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Just to add, I have towed TTs from 14ft thru 32ft as well as a unloaded tow dolly (never back a loaded dolly).
By FAR the toughest of all those is the tow dolly due to the short length.
We traded our 32ft TT last year for the MH.
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Old 04-29-2013, 08:09 PM   #5
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This is good info as posted. I am glad to hear that it should be eaiser to backup.

My truck is rated to tow 9000 dry and 15000 loaded.

The new trailer is 6450 dry with a max loaded with a additional 3500 lbs
for cargo. So I should be fine.


Thanks
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Old 04-30-2013, 10:21 AM   #6
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This is good info as posted. I am glad to hear that it should be eaiser to backup.
Hi, long time member that doesn't post much.

Regardless of type of trailer or number of axles, you probably need to practice backing into a limited space from a 90 degree turn. Find a parking lot with acres of unused space. Set up your parking space using lumber or cones to result in a space 12' wide and longer than the trailer. Then practice backing into that space without running over the lumber or knocking over the cones. Yes, different trailer lengths and different number of trailer axles makes a difference. So does fifth wheel vs. bumper pull hitch. After several tries to back into that space without running over something, you'll gain confidence as to how to do it in the real world of RV campgrounds.

Quote:
My truck is rated to tow 9000 dry and 15000 loaded. The new trailer is 6450 dry with a max loaded with a additional 3500 lbs for cargo. So I should be fine.
Good luck. If the 15,000 is the GCWR of the truck, and the 9,000 is the "tow rating" of the truck, then both of those ratings are wildly optimistic. If you try to drag a 9,000 pound trailer or a trailer that pushed your gross combined weight of truck and trailer anywhere close to 15,000 pounds, then you'll probably be severely overloaded over the GVWR of the truck.. Those ratings assume your wet and loaded tow vehicle including passengers, tools, jacks, hitch and anything else in the tow vehicle will weigh only 6,000 pounds before you tie onto the trailer. And that's a big joke, because your wet and loaded truck will weigh a lot more than 6,000 pounds. Plus those ratings ignore the payload capacity of the tow vehicle, and that's probably your limiter.

A travel trailer with 9950 GVWR will have an average wet and loaded hitch weight of 12.5% of GVWR. That's about 1,240 pounds of hitch weight. Some TTs, including mine, have 15% hitch weight, and that would be almost 1,500 pounds of hitch weight for that wet and loaded TT. Almost all half-ton pickups will be overloaded with that much hitch weight.

So become friends with a CAT scale, and compare the weight on your 4 truck tires to the GVWR of the truck. Try very hard to not be overloaded when towing. If necessary get rid of some of the weight in the truck. Even with an empty TT, you'll probably be close to the GVWR of your truck.

And again, good luck.
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