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Old 04-10-2011, 01:18 PM   #1
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GMC 2500 is similar to RAM 3500 for towing 5er?

This made me go Hmmm . . . thank you in advance for all thoughts and comments.

Based on my research, it surprised me that the GMC 2500 is very similar (if not better) than RAM 3500 when it comes to towing and payload. Referring to Model years in the 2004 - 2006 timeframe.
(both units with SRW, Crew Cabs, Short Beds, Diesels, Auto trans, 4x4s, 3.73:1 Axle ratio).

I am trying to get the right truck to handle my 2002 Holiday Rambler Presedential 5er, (10K dry, 12K wet, 2K pin weight). I want to be in specs with all combinations (GVWR, GCVWR, Payload, towing, etc).

FYI- no can do on the Dually option.

Per specs the GMC 2500 and RAM 3500 seem to work.

Here is what I found on the GMC 2500 vs RAM 3500

GMC 2500
GVWR = 9,200
PAYLOAD = 3,308
CURB WT = 5,892
GAWR F = truck specific
GAWR R = truck specific 6,150
GCWR = 22,000
MAX TRAILER WT = ?
Towing capabilities = 16 K Lbs. w/ 5er

RAM 3500
GVWR = 9,900
PAYLOAD = 3,060
CURB WT = 6,842
GAWR F = 5,200
GAWR R = 6,150
GCWR = 21,000
MAX TRAILER WT = 14,000
Towing capabilities = 13 K Lbs. w/ 5er




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Old 04-10-2011, 02:15 PM   #2
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No...they are different, one is a 2500 one is a 3500. Disregard all those numbers in the brochures and on line...they are VERY deceiving. Some numbers are for gas engines...which increase the cargo capacity from 800 to 1,000 due to not having the heavy engine. Your figures show the 2500 having higher numbers than the 3500, makes no sense. The only numbers they can't fudge are GVWR, GCWR and the cargo capacity (noted on the Tire and Loading Information sticker on the left side of the frame).

Bottom line, actual tow capacity equals the GCWR minus the truck's weight when ready to tow. Ready to tow means the 5th wheel's pin weight, cargo, passengers, etc are included in the truck's weight.
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Old 04-10-2011, 03:11 PM   #3
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My 2004 ext cab GM product 4X4 duramax/allison scaled ready to travel at 7500 pounds. So that only leaves in real world numbers 1700 pounds before exceeding the trucks GVWR. Pulled a 12,350 as scaled pound fiver with it. Pin weight scaled at 3000 pounds, putting me at 10,500 pounds on a 9200GVWR truck. Tires were overloaded every trip. Axle was at it's limits also. Truck would go OK, but handling in the mountains was scary to say the least. Since you say a dually is out of the question, then get a smaller fiver. You will not like the ride handling of a 3/4 ton and while the 1 ton SRW has more capacity it will still be at the upper limits towing that heavy of a fiver. Also you will find that the scaled ready to camp weights of the 2500HD GM offering is likely more than a 3500 Dodge, thus the increased weight rating numbers.
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Old 04-10-2011, 05:19 PM   #4
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The numbers published by the manufacturers are very deceiving. Yo need t also read all of the footnotes on the rating to see what really limits the truck.

The only sure way to know is to weigh the trailer and truck and go back to the GVWR and GAWR. Also check the rear GAWR.

Check out Ken Lenger's site and use the Excel spread sheet he has at the bottomof the page.

Ken
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Old 04-11-2011, 08:48 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dmitri View Post
GMC 2500
GVWR = 9,200
PAYLOAD = 3,308
CURB WT = 5,892
GAWR F = truck specific
GAWR R = truck specific 6,150
GCWR = 22,000
MAX TRAILER WT = ?
Towing capabilities = 16 K Lbs. w/ 5er

RAM 3500
GVWR = 9,900
PAYLOAD = 3,060
CURB WT = 6,842
GAWR F = 5,200
GAWR R = 6,150
GCWR = 21,000
MAX TRAILER WT = 14,000
Towing capabilities = 13 K Lbs. w/ 5er
Ummmm.....right. Not even if you tied helium-filled weather balloons to all 4 corners would you get a realistic laden curb weight anywhere near that figure!

This is a perfect example of why you can't go by manufacturer's trailer tow ratings (i.e., GCWR minus manufacturer's curb weight). Even if the GCWR is anywhere near accurate, I'll guarantee you the manufacturer's curb weight (supposedly a base truck, no options or accessories and only a 150 lb driver) will be WAY low, thus generating an inflated trailer tow rating.

The other factor that is often ignored is that buried in the fine print with the manufacturer's trailer tow rating is a statement similar to "None of the truck's other ratings shall be exceeded when towing." With a SRW truck towing a 5th wheel that will place 20% or more of its laden weight on the truck as 5th wheel hitch pin weight, one will almost always hit the truck's GVWR rating long before reaching the manufacturer's trailer tow rating.

Rusty
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Old 04-14-2011, 04:40 PM   #6
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GM rates its GCWR based largely on drivetrains so in theory the DMAX/Allison drivetrain would have the same GCWR in either a 2500 or 3500 series. I am not sure about either Dodge or Ford. Tow ratings usually take the GCWR and subtract the curb wt of the truck and a 150 lb driver. This is where the "magic" numbers come in. I found an old brochure for the 04 Chevy HDs and indeed the numbers you listed were correct. Remember that passengers, hitch, fuel etc are going to reduce your payload leaving less for the Pin wt of the 5th wheel. I have found that Ford and Dodge are indeed heavier than GM trucks - not sure if they are indeed heavier or just more truthful on the spec sheets.

As others have pointed out - you are running into the old catch-22 of having enough power but not enough payload to do the job. As for the payload differences between 2500 and 3500 SRW trucks there is only 500 - 700 lbs difference in payloads - now a DRW - that makes a 2000 lb difference.
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Old 04-17-2011, 11:53 PM   #7
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I think you would have enough truck to handle that 5er in a 2500. You might want to add overloads or airbags to firm up the suspension but capacity is not going to be a problem.
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