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Old 09-10-2019, 10:41 PM   #15
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You are looking at 65 ft. and 30k lbs. of truck and trailer right out of the box. That is long and heavy, even for an experienced RV'er.

Have you towed anything heavy before? If not, honestly, I'd prefer you start with something shorter and lighter and work up to that size combo after you gain some towing experience, or at least stick to the east coast where its flat (and where I don't have to share a road with you). And I'd advise a well used combo that is pre-beat up so you don't have to worry so much about the inevitable rookie mistakes you are going to make that leave scuff marks (or worse) on the gelcoat and paint of both your truck and trailer.
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Old 09-11-2019, 05:29 AM   #16
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A few more points:

I can agree with jjack. If you never towed before buying a 42' Sandpiper and a dually truck is one heck of a 1st step. You will make mistakes, we all do. I started towing boats and then a 26' travel trailer. When I started towing a 5th wheel I hit my share of curbs by not making wide enough turns like semi trucks do.

Second point - a Sandpiper is a run of the mill 5th wheel and probably not certified for full time. You should look for a more quality built unit and one built for full time.
To me, you will want a washer dryer, dual pane windows and fireplace. You will also want a trailer that is insulated really well. Every manufacturer builds entry level, mid level and then their top of the line 5th wheel. Example- Jayco builds 'Jay Flight', 'North Pointe', 'Eagle' and then their top trailer is 'Pinnacle'. Heartland's top 5th wheel is the 'Landmark'. A good 5th wheel to full time in is a DRV Mobile Suits.

I would not abandon the tiny house just yet. You can have one built to tow, I think, and have it insulated really good and built solid.

If you plan to stay in the US every part of the US gets cold(ish) in January and February. Especially at nighttime which in January and February there is a lot of dark chilly weather.

The cheapest place to live is out west on BLM land, $180 for a 6 month permit. When I was thinking of full time I would have wintered in Yuma Arizona and spend summer in Flagstaff Arizona or Durango Colorado.

I stayed in my 5th wheel 80% of the time for 5 years. I wintered in Crystal River Florida at $550/month and spent summer in the Pennsylvania mountains on my own wooded property. I used a local state park for the dump station and garbage. I kept a house in Columbus Ohio. I did not want to let go of having a base location plus all my mail was sent there in the summer. In the winter the mail was forwarded to the Crystal River post office box.

Oh, each place got chilly enough that staying warm at night was an issue about 70 of those nights. A trailer will get cold really fast so spending September and early October in the Pennsylvania mountains was chilly and January and February in Crystal River Florida would get chilly. There is a fine line between using too much propane to stay warm vs using the right combination of electric space heaters. We would use the A/C in April/May in Florida but did not need A/C in the cool Pennsylvania summer months.

So to full time there are a few things to think about.

1. Buying your 1st rig
* Buying a quality rig.
2. Leaning to tow your 1st rig
3. Where to stay
4. How to stay comfortable
5. How to get important mail
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Old 09-12-2019, 07:59 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by jjackrash View Post
You are looking at 65 ft. and 30k lbs. of truck and trailer right out of the box. That is long and heavy, even for an experienced RV'er.

Have you towed anything heavy before? If not, honestly, I'd prefer you start with something shorter and lighter and work up to that size combo after you gain some towing experience, or at least stick to the east coast where its flat (and where I don't have to share a road with you). And I'd advise a well used combo that is pre-beat up so you don't have to worry so much about the inevitable rookie mistakes you are going to make that leave scuff marks (or worse) on the gelcoat and paint of both your truck and trailer.
Part of my job as Munitions in the Air Force involves driving semis with 40ft gooseneck trailers so I have a headstart.

I really appreciate all the tips and conversations. I'm gaining a lot of great insight.
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Old 09-12-2019, 08:22 AM   #18
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Part of my job as Munitions in the Air Force involves driving semis with 40ft gooseneck trailers so I have a headstart.
Ok, so you do have experience towing heavy. Good luck on your adventure!
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Old 09-12-2019, 09:58 AM   #19
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Sure am giving thought to those 5 things. I have college plans to bed down near Clemson SC so I'm trying to find the cheapest RV space rent solution. I plan to buy land later. Unless maybe I can buy a piece of land that is all set with hookups.
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Old 09-12-2019, 03:38 PM   #20
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I would not abandon the tiny house just yet. You can have one built to tow, I think, and have it insulated really good and built solid.

I think that gets out of my price range. I'm estimating a budget of less than $80,000 for both the truck and the RV. I have time to search and wait for good deals. Time will tell if I'm being unrealistic. I do want a solid durable RV. Anything cheap that would fall apart in so many years would be a foolish investment.
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Old 09-12-2019, 04:35 PM   #21
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SC is not warm in the winter. I would suggest paying attention to insulation. If you are not committed yet there are colleges in Gainesville Florida and Tallahassee Florida. You would still need to pay attention to insulation.

They make a mid bunk model 5th wheel that the mid bunk could easily be turned into a office.

80k for both the truck and 5th wheel is mostly doable I think. In 2012 I bought a new 5th wheel and new F-450 for $110,000. 50k for the trailer and 60k for the truck. 6.5 years later I got 60k for both. It was still a nice 5th wheel and nice truck so hope you can find a good deal on a used rig.

Have you thought about a travel trailer and truck? Most trailer manufactures make a bunk room trailer. You could turn the bunk room into your study/office. A travel trailer takes less truck to tow it and are less expensive than a 5th wheel.

It is easy to stay warm in a house in a southern winter but not as easy in a 5th wheel or travel trailer.
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Old 09-12-2019, 05:36 PM   #22
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Okay Tuffr2. I started looking back into the tiny homes and realized I might get just as great a deal on a tiny home on a trailer as any RV. It's been several years since I looked into them.



So now I'm curious what I might get away with to tow about a 30' tiny home. There's so many with awesome lofts allowing for so much more living space.
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Old 09-12-2019, 05:58 PM   #23
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I really think a tiny house is so much better than an RV. I bet my truck could tow a tiny house. It is a 2017 F-250 6.2 gas engine. It has a 12,000lb trailer towing capacity.

Depending on how fancy you want your truck to be depends on how much you will pay. A Ford XLT vs a Ford Platinum is 20k difference.

A 30' tiny house should be 30' x 8' with a loft should provide 300sq. feet or morebof nice living space.

If I owned a tiny house I would only tow it on back roads and never on the highway. Towing at 45 - 55 mph is probably easier on it than towing at 70 - 72 mph.

And FYI - my wife likes tiny houses. Now I am thinking about it again also. Here is why.

1. Better built
2. Probably will not depreciate like an RV and maybe will appreciate.
3. Better insulated
4. Can be customized
5. A well built RV will also be expensive. Think Artic Fox and Outdoor RV.
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Old 09-12-2019, 06:03 PM   #24
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I don't know what those tiny homes weigh, or the length. You might get by with a SRW 350/3500. I wouldn't bother with a 250/2500 even if the specs said it was up to the task, there's no reason to give up the extra payload and stability, unless you really hate the ride unloaded.
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Old 09-12-2019, 06:04 PM   #25
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5. A well built RV will also be expensive. Think Artic Fox and Outdoor RV.
And heavy
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Old 09-12-2019, 06:58 PM   #26
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I just googled 'How much does a tiny house weigh'.

You guys are right. A SRW 1ton would be best as a 3/4 ton could only tow the 22' or less tiny houses.

There were very good examples of particular models and what they weight.

8,500lbs. to 15,000lbs is typical. 25' is will weigh 15,000lbs.

None look areodynamic so I stand by towing on back roads only.
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Old 09-12-2019, 07:42 PM   #27
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I just googled 'How much does a tiny house weigh'.

You guys are right. A SRW 1ton would be best as a 3/4 ton could only tow the 22' or less tiny houses.

There were very good examples of particular models and what they weight.

8,500lbs. to 15,000lbs is typical. 25' is will weigh 15,000lbs.

None look areodynamic so I stand by towing on back roads only.

Ooooh... Yeah I wonder how well they would tow on the interstate. I would want about 30' or more though too...
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Old 09-13-2019, 04:36 AM   #28
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Take a look at the Grand Design Reflection 315 RLTS. Compare that to the tiny house.
This is a big triple slide travel trailer. Rear living model. These can be towed on the highway as it has an areodynamic front cap. Jayco and Winnebago make a like travel trailer. The Winnebago is called mini plus 30RLTS and not sure what the Jayco is called, 330 something. Just Google Jayco 330 travel trailer. These travel trailers will weight around 10,000 or 11,000lbs and will be 36' long.

An RV is built to be moved more so than a tiny house.

You can tow a big travel trailer with a SRW 1 ton truck vs a big 5th wheel with a dually truck. The reason is a travel trailer does not put as much weight on the truck as a 5th wheel.

A travel trailer also does not cost as much a 5th wheel.

On YouTube you can watch cold weather camping to get a few tips. Again, in South Carolina it will get chilly with some below freezing nighttime temps.
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