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Old 11-15-2005, 11:03 AM   #1
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Have you ever got to the point where you have done too much research and read too many articles on towing? Well I'm at that point. Here is my dilemma. I have been looking at purchasing a new 2006 Pilgrim Open Road 5th wheel. The model is a 357RL3S-5 with 3 slide-outs. It is 37 feet long with double axles and has a dry weight of 11,260 (I know that the dry weight doesn't mean a thing when doing my calculations), the GVWR is 14,000 lbs. and the pin weight is 2,000 lbs. The pin weight seems light to me when you apply the 20% rule, however the RV dealer has confirmed the 2,000 lbs. In addition, the dealer tells me he pulled the trailer from the factory in Indiana to the dealership in Ontario with his 3/4 ton Chevy with a gas engine. At that point I became a little sceptical.

I have my eye on a 2006 Dodge Ram Quad Cab, SRW SB 4x4 with 4:10 gears and a turbo diesel. I have been trying to determine if a Ram 2500 will do the job or will I have to go to a Ram 3500. For now, I will only be towing the 5th wheel onto my property in Northern Ontario at the begining of the season and home again when the camping season closes. In a few years, when I retire I would like to do some traveling, so I want to make the right decision now and buy the right truck.

My reasoning for going with the short box, is that for now the truck will be used as a daily driver and a long box won't fit in the garage. My reasoning for going with a 4x4 (even though I will be losing some towing capacity) is that we have some sever winter driving conditions up here in the north. As for the short box, I have also been researching a Pull-rite slider.

I would appreciate any and all comments or suggestions.

Regards
Don
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Old 11-15-2005, 11:03 AM   #2
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Have you ever got to the point where you have done too much research and read too many articles on towing? Well I'm at that point. Here is my dilemma. I have been looking at purchasing a new 2006 Pilgrim Open Road 5th wheel. The model is a 357RL3S-5 with 3 slide-outs. It is 37 feet long with double axles and has a dry weight of 11,260 (I know that the dry weight doesn't mean a thing when doing my calculations), the GVWR is 14,000 lbs. and the pin weight is 2,000 lbs. The pin weight seems light to me when you apply the 20% rule, however the RV dealer has confirmed the 2,000 lbs. In addition, the dealer tells me he pulled the trailer from the factory in Indiana to the dealership in Ontario with his 3/4 ton Chevy with a gas engine. At that point I became a little sceptical.

I have my eye on a 2006 Dodge Ram Quad Cab, SRW SB 4x4 with 4:10 gears and a turbo diesel. I have been trying to determine if a Ram 2500 will do the job or will I have to go to a Ram 3500. For now, I will only be towing the 5th wheel onto my property in Northern Ontario at the begining of the season and home again when the camping season closes. In a few years, when I retire I would like to do some traveling, so I want to make the right decision now and buy the right truck.

My reasoning for going with the short box, is that for now the truck will be used as a daily driver and a long box won't fit in the garage. My reasoning for going with a 4x4 (even though I will be losing some towing capacity) is that we have some sever winter driving conditions up here in the north. As for the short box, I have also been researching a Pull-rite slider.

I would appreciate any and all comments or suggestions.

Regards
Don
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Old 11-15-2005, 11:23 AM   #3
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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 Onondaga:
I have been looking at purchasing a new 2006 Pilgrim Open Road 5th wheel. The model is a 357RL3S-5 with 3 slide-outs. It is 37 feet long with double axles and has a dry weight of 11,260 (I know that the dry weight doesn't mean a thing when doing my calculations), the GVWR is 14,000 lbs. and the pin weight is 2,000 lbs. The pin weight seems light to me when you apply the 20% rule, however the RV dealer has confirmed the 2,000 lbs. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Probably an apples and oranges comparison. The 2000 lbs is likely dry pin weight. As you load the basement, fill your propane tanks, load your food, clothes and stuff, etc., note where the weight will go. Loaded pin weight will increase quickly - something around 2800 lbs (20% of the 14,000 lbs GVWR) won't be unrealistic at all.
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">In addition, the dealer tells me he pulled the trailer from the factory in Indiana to the dealership in Ontario with his 3/4 ton Chevy with a gas engine. At that point I became a little sceptical. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Just because a person can do something doesn't mean that he/she should do something.
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">I have my eye on a 2006 Dodge Ram Quad Cab, SRW SB 4x4 with 4:10 gears and a turbo diesel. I have been trying to determine if a Ram 2500 will do the job or will I have to go to a Ram 3500. For now, I will only be towing the 5th wheel onto my property in Northern Ontario at the begining of the season and home again when the camping season closes. In a few years, when I retire I would like to do some traveling, so I want to make the right decision now and buy the right truck.

My reasoning for going with the short box, is that for now the truck will be used as a daily driver and a long box won't fit in the garage. My reasoning for going with a 4x4 (even though I will be losing some towing capacity) is that we have some sever winter driving conditions up here in the north. As for the short box, I have also been researching a Pull-rite slider. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>A short box will require a sliding hitch if you don't want to worry about crunching the rear cab pillars or glass when that time comes that you're forced to turn tighter than you've planned.

With a 5th wheel of this size and weight, the 2500 will be well over its GVWR by the time you load up your truck with driver, passengers, cargo, full fuel tanks, hitch, accessories, etc. The 3500 SRW may be borderline on GVWR as well, although (depending on powertrain and rear axle ratio) it should be OK on GCWR - I believe you'll have a 23,000 lb GCWR with the 4.10 rear axle.

By the way, Don, I notice that this is your first post. Welcome to iRV2.com - we're glad you've joined us.

Rusty
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Old 11-15-2005, 11:58 AM   #4
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I personally would go for the 3500....as someone has said already...the extra weight adds up fast.....the other pont is the safety factor and you really dont want to fool with that........the weight police in ontario are out there (ie;;cam wooleys 400 hwy raiders) and they wouldnt even let you off the lot if you get hauled in.....the long/short box is your choice but with the length you are talking i would definetly go the long box or a auto slider hitch.........you have a lot of weight and length to consider, no sense underbuying the TV and having to spend lots more later to upgrade... where are you?
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Old 11-15-2005, 12:00 PM   #5
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">My reasoning for going with the short box, is that for now the truck will be used as a daily driver and a long box won't fit in the garage. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
I've been towing with a short box for over 6 years and seldom use my Reese slider. I would not be afraid to purchase a short box if that is what you want and for the once a year that you may need the slider, I would purchase a good one but not one of the $1500 auto sliders because you don't need it.
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Old 11-15-2005, 12:21 PM   #6
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Thank you all for your input. It was much appreciated. To answer your question Skip298, we are home based in Burlington, Ontario, but our get away property is near Earlton/Englehart Ontario, about a 7 hour drive from home base.
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Old 11-15-2005, 04:10 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 JimmyDee:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">My reasoning for going with the short box, is that for now the truck will be used as a daily driver and a long box won't fit in the garage. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
I've been towing with a short box for over 6 years and seldom use my Reese slider. I would not be afraid to purchase a short box if that is what you want and for the once a year that you may need the slider, I would purchase a good one but not one of the $1500 auto sliders because you don't need it.
Jim </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

The reason I suggested the long box was for the trailer weight..the reason I suggested the sliding hitch was for the length of his trailer and the routes that he will likely be driving and the fact that he will only be doing this twice a year........not near enough time to get used to towing something as big as he has..why stack the cards against yourself to start with.. and,, his route will take him through some good highways but also the most travelled and highly enforced pavement in north america....without the proper combination he undoubtedly is going to get hauled over and challenged. just my opinion... We lived in and near Burlington for 40 years then retired an moved here..
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Old 11-15-2005, 07:38 PM   #8
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My Only Question To You Would Be For Very Liitle Extra, You Can Have The 3500. It's Better To Have Too Much Truck. Good Luck With
Your New Toys
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Old 11-16-2005, 07:33 AM   #9
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Another possibility would be to bag the tow vehicle and have someone tow the camper to your get away property, (if that is where you always plan to use it).

By the nature of your questions, I'm wondering if this may be your first camper. If so, you may want to downsize a bit and make sure you really like the lifestyle. That combination will set you back a pretty penny. Just a thought.
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Old 11-16-2005, 10:41 AM   #10
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">h </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Hi Camper1b, yes what we are looking at is a pretty penny. What isn't these days. Bagging the tow vehicle for now is a great suggestion and a definite possibility. For next year anyway. We'll be retiring in a couple of years and the wife wants to travel, so we could wait to purchse the tow vehicle. What I will do is ask the local RV dealer (located 35 miles from the property) if he would deliver and set up the unit and then come back at the end of the season and put it in winter storage.

As for our experience, we started off wilderness/canoe camping in a tent for several years until one May we had 6" of snow. We then moved up to a large Viking pop-up. We have now decided to bypass the usual progression and go whole-hog.

Thanks again for the suggestion.
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Old 11-16-2005, 11:49 AM   #11
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Welcome to the forum. Your ahead of the game by asking others and not relying on the salesman to tell the truth. A 1 ton is not that much more expensive than a 3/4 and the ride of a 1 ton is quite comfortable. You can get duals with 1 tons. For the trailer you are describing, I would recommend duals. (Not necessarily for the weight load but for the stability).

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">As for our experience, we started off wilderness/canoe camping in a tent for several years until one May we had 6" of snow. We then moved up to a large Viking pop-up. We have now decided to bypass the usual progression and go whole-hog. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

We had a popup before getting our 32 foot fiver. We find the lenght to be roomy but not too long for average campsite sizing. We have one big slide. I probably would not be happy with a 37 footer but it depends on what kinds of campgrounds and sites you frequent.A 37 footer will exclude you from some. I used to tow with a 3/4 ton gas Ford and our fiver was a load for it. With our 1 ton, towing is a very relaxed experience. We also have dual rear wheels which makes lots of difference. I knew when we bought the trailer that a one ton was in our future, so we "got by" with the 3/4 for awhile. The difference in the way the two trucks handled the same trailer was "night and day". The diesel VS gas is another night & day compairison. GO DIESEL!

AS A FOOTNOTE: You are looking at a fiver with three slides. Make sure you can access all the amenities (door, toilet, sink, refrigerator, dinette) with ALL the slides closed. On some multi-slide models the slides block off your access when they are closed for travel. Being able to stop on the road or at a roadside park, go in the trailer, sit down and eat lunch, use your own bathroom... without opening the slides is GREAT. With ya'll having popup experience like we do, you understand not being able to get to things because the trailer is all folded up. That was the worst thing about traveling with the popup and the best thing about traveling with the fiver. So be sure and check your access when the slides are closed.
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Old 11-16-2005, 02:27 PM   #12
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My 2 cents!

I would get a dooley for that size RV and nothing less. Sure a 2500 can pull it. However your are talking your familys safety. A dooley is much more stable. My RV is considerably lighter and shorter. I pulled it once with a 2500. Now it is pulled with a 3500 dooley. Much more stable and secure, wife will even pull it. My brother has a 30 foot double slide Hoilday Rambler, pulled it for a couple months with a 2500, he quickley went to a 3500 dooley. Again stability and control.

I have been using a 3500 crew cab dooley for a daily commuter for over 10 years now. All three of my daughters have taken their drivers test in a crew cab dooley.

I have yet to hear any one complain about having too much truck. You sure hear them complain about not enough truck though.
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Old 11-16-2005, 03:57 PM   #13
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I can only reiterate what has been said. At 37 feet you will very much appreciate the dual wheel one ton. I run way too much truck for my tailer and smile all the way. The other way around is no fun at all. If you plan on moveing the aformentioned trailer at a later time, do yourself a favor and consider a dually one ton truck. If size is a concerne remember that after driving a vehicle of this size for about 20 minutes will make you feel much more comfortable with it.
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Old 11-16-2005, 03:59 PM   #14
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I have to agree on the dually as a minimum for the trailer. I try to tell people that they make little trucks for little trailers and big trucks for big trailers. And at 37', that is a big trailer.

And number one rule in RV and truck shopping is "Never believe the salesman." #2 rule is "Salesmen lie". Seriously, get all of the weight info (not dry weights) and understand the tow ratings and all of the terms. Read all of the footnotes as well.

Glad to have you here.

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