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Old 06-06-2008, 10:02 AM   #1
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We have a 36' fiver and need buy a truck to tow it. We're planning on living on the road for a while, so reliability and mileage are big factors. We're thinking Ford F350 dually diesel is the best way to go. Would appreciate hearing from people with suggestions or advice, thank you.
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Old 06-06-2008, 10:02 AM   #2
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We have a 36' fiver and need buy a truck to tow it. We're planning on living on the road for a while, so reliability and mileage are big factors. We're thinking Ford F350 dually diesel is the best way to go. Would appreciate hearing from people with suggestions or advice, thank you.
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Old 06-06-2008, 10:17 AM   #3
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Welcome to iRV2!

If you browse thru previous threads you will find an amazing amount of info on tow vehicles and weight ratings. I recommend you spend some time reading past topics. You will learn alot.

In short, your tow vehicle requirements will be driven by the weight of your trailer, fully loaded, and the contents of the truck. Once you have the combined weight of these two items, that will dictate the truck based upon the Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR) and the actual pin weight of the trailer.

I am sure many more folks will chime in here. I predict you will get more info than you ever imagined.
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Old 06-06-2008, 05:06 PM   #4
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Here is a site that will provide lots of info on the towing terms and a weight calculator.

Welcome to iRV2.

With a 36' 5er you are well into a 1 ton dually range fro a truck and possibly an F450 depending on the trailer.

With our 35.6' 5er we got 10 to 11 and once 11.9 mpg towing at 56 to 68 MPH. Trailer was 13,500 to 14,000#. Solo we would get 16.5 at 65 to 70 MPH and about 13 in city driving. This was with a 4.10 (7.3L) axle and I would not want less for when we got into some grades.

have fun looking...

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Old 06-06-2008, 05:58 PM   #5
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I pulled my trailer (16,500 #'s) from N.J to MT and back with an F-350, Diesel and 4:10 gears. I was happy but it did slow down a bit on steeper hills. I am now on the road fulltime and upgraded to an F-450, Diesel and 4:30 gears. Pulls a lot better.

The new diesels (regardless of brands) don't get as good MPG's the pre `08's do due to new EPA guidelines for diesels. My '06 got about 18 solo and 11 towing. MY `08 gets about 14 solo and 9 towing. Overall I am happier with the F-450.
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Old 06-07-2008, 08:11 AM   #6
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Weight plays a bigger role in choosing a tow vehicle than size. However I would not tow a 36 foot anything with a 3/4 ton truck. Now, your choice of tow vehicles is the one that is reported to be getting the absolute worst fuel mileage of any of the new trucks. But it is your money to spend so spend it on what you want. Please come back with the fivers GVWR rating so we can suggest a proper sized truck.
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Old 06-07-2008, 01:39 PM   #7
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by 450Donn:
Weight plays a bigger role in choosing a tow vehicle than size. However I would not tow a 36 foot anything with a 3/4 ton truck. Now, your choice of tow vehicles is the one that is reported to be getting the absolute worst fuel mileage of any of the new trucks. But it is your money to spend so spend it on what you want. Please come back with the fivers GVWR rating so we can suggest a proper sized truck. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

The light weight is 13,500 and gross is 17,000. Thanks for your help.
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Old 06-07-2008, 01:43 PM   #8
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Thanks much. I know the light weight is 13,500 and gross is 17,000. WE haven't taken possession of it yet so that's about all I know.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by RKamperRV:
Welcome to iRV2!

If you browse thru previous threads you will find an amazing amount of info on tow vehicles and weight ratings. I recommend you spend some time reading past topics. You will learn alot.

In short, your tow vehicle requirements will be driven by the weight of your trailer, fully loaded, and the contents of the truck. Once you have the combined weight of these two items, that will dictate the truck based upon the Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR) and the actual pin weight of the trailer.

I am sure many more folks will chime in here. I predict you will get more info than you ever imagined. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
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Old 06-07-2008, 01:45 PM   #9
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I was afraid we should be thinking about a 450. Thanks for the input!

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by K-Star:
I pulled my trailer (16,500 #'s) from N.J to MT and back with an F-350, Diesel and 4:10 gears. I was happy but it did slow down a bit on steeper hills. I am now on the road fulltime and upgraded to an F-450, Diesel and 4:30 gears. Pulls a lot better.

The new diesels (regardless of brands) don't get as good MPG's the pre `08's do due to new EPA guidelines for diesels. My '06 got about 18 solo and 11 towing. MY `08 gets about 14 solo and 9 towing. Overall I am happier with the F-450. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
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Old 06-07-2008, 03:22 PM   #10
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Sounds like the light weight is the dry weight and the heavy weight is the GVWR. So you will add cargo, water, propane and such to the dry weight and wind up somewhere under 17,000# hopefully

If you are going to full time, you will be surprised at how fast the weight adds up.

First off, the F350 DRW will wind up weighing 8000# plus and an F450 a bit more than that once loaded with fuel, passengers and a tool box. So say you load the trailer to 16,000# when ready to roll. 16000 + 8000 = 24000# gross combined weight. I believe the normal F350 DRW has a GCWR of 23,500#...so you are over by a little bit.

The next problem is pin weight. TYPICALLY a 5er of this size will have a pin weight of about 20% of the trailer GVWR or 17000 X 0.20 = 3400#.

So 8000# +3400# = 11,400#. If your truck weighs only 8000# and your GVWR is higher than 11,400# you are OK. I keep my truck loaded light so it could be heavier.

For a Our 5er had a GVWR of 14,400# and we were loaded to about 14,000# on a couple of occasions and we did work the truck with the 4.10 axle. Most of the time we were fine as we generally stayed in the flatter part of the country. If i was going to go up to tha trailer with a 17000# GVWR, I would move up to a F450, Dodge 4500 or Chevy 4500 series for the weight.

You will see folks towing BIG 5ers with 3/4 ton trucks and making it, but it is not fun and they generally do not know better. You will hear of people wishing they had more truck, but I have not found any wishing fro a smaller truck.

Ken
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Old 06-07-2008, 03:56 PM   #11
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">You will see folks towing BIG 5ers with 3/4 ton trucks and making it, but it is not fun and they generally do not know better. You will hear of people wishing they had more truck, but I have not found any wishing for a smaller truck. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Ditto Ken We made the mistake of purchasing our TV before we decided on our 5th wheel -- after 5,000 miles of less than satisfactory towing performance, we upgraded. You suck up the loss and chalk it up to another lesson learned - albeit the hard (expensive) way!
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Old 06-08-2008, 06:15 AM   #12
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as others have said you cant have to much truck! If it where my choice I would find a GM 4500 . ford f 450 or a real medium duty truck! 300 hp with 600+ ft tq is the min motor with 4.10 rear end ratio. If you can find a 6 speed standard this is your best choice but it is more work for you.I have a duramax truck with a allison 6 speed auto ,its a great 3/4 ton truck but really needs more tire and spring to handle your weight class (I tow a 31' 8000lb holiday rambler with it). power wise my truck will pull any hill even in 6th gear as long as the motor is at 1900 rpm or more( if your in 6th gear that 72mph + with 3.73 gears) .I have a custom ECM tune from Kennedy diesel that make more low end power and adds about 70 hp /150 ft TQ , zero issue with hot egt or over powering the allison trans even towing (I do show it respect and dont hammer it). Fuel load is a big problem on any pickup truck , stock fuel tanks for the most part are around 32~36 gallons with a 8' bed (ford, gm or dodge). Thats not much range so a real medium duty with duel saddle tanks (75+gallons) will let you run all day without fuel stops. Trust me with my short bed truck and only 26 gallons on board your only going to go 200 mile safely with a margin of safety of 50 miles befor yor dry and walking.... I have since built a aux fuel tank to put in the bed that pumps into the filler neck of the factory tank while I am driveing . This gives me a range of 450 mile towing if I know where I can get fuel next.
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Old 06-08-2008, 06:44 AM   #13
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There you go. You got your answer. I will add that from my experiences if you take the trailers 17,000 GVWR and add a consertative 8000 for the truck you wind up at 25,000 pounds as a gross combined weight. That is more than almost any 1 ton dually will have, so for that much trailer I would suggest something bigger than a 1 ton dually, more like a F450/f550 Ford or a Dodge 4500/5500 or a GM C4500/C5500 class truck. Yes, Dodge is now selling a 4500/5500 cab and chassis to which you can add all sorts of custom beds with lots of storage boxes. Truck is your choice, but choose wisely and choose large enough the first time.
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