Originally Posted by SmokeyWren
I can't find the GVWR for a '97 Dodge 3500 diesel....
Sorry, I had to run, and when I returned it was too late to edit my post. So here's my edit and additional comments:
Brain fade. Make that GCWR that I can't find. I found the GVWR of 10,500 for that truck, but if your door sticker says 11,000 then go by the door sticker.
Originally Posted by rangerbob
And in this calculation is it close to the 9100 lbs of the 5th wheel GVWR?
The GVWR of the trailer is not important when on the road. Use the trailer's GVWR only for calculating estimated wet and loaded hitch weight and estimated gross combined weight (GCW) when matching trailer to tow vehicle.
Compare the combined trailer axle weight to the combined GAWR (gross axle weight rating) of the trailer to see if the trailer is overloaded over the GAWR. The trailer's GAWR is probably on the same sticker as the GVWR. The GAWR is probably for each axle, so you have to double it for a tandam-axle trailer. My guess is you have two 4,000-pound axles, for a combined GAWR of 8,000 pounds. If that's what you have, then the actual 7,900 pounds axle weight means you were not overloaded over the GAWR.
But for grins, the following is not important when on the road, but is interesting nonetheless.
The typical medium-sized 5er has a hitch weight of about 17% of total trailer weight. 17 percent of 9,100 = 7,553 expected axle weight and 1,547 expected hitch weight when wet and loaded for bear.
Your trailer axle weight (GAW) of 7,900 pounds compared to a GVWR of 9,100 GVWR means your trailer was probably overloaded over the 9100 pounds GVWR of the trailer, or else you didn't distribute the load in the trailer properly - too much weight behind the axles that needs to be moved forward in front of the axles.
9,100 GVWR minus 7,900 axle weight = 1,200 hitch weight. 1,200 hitch weight is only 13.2% of 9,100. It would be a rare 5er with only 13.2% hitch weight when properly loaded. So with the weight in the trailer properly distributed, you probably had a bit more hitch weight than 1,200, which means means your trailer probably grossed a bit more than the 9,100 GVWR.
But again, the GVWR of the trailer is meaningless when on the road. Compare trailer axle weight to the trailer's GAWR to determine if your trailer is overloaded, and ignore the trailer's GVWR.