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Old 06-15-2012, 07:10 AM   #1
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Tow truck.

Hi all! I am new to iRV2, and l live in the UK. I have an Itasca Sunrise at the moment, but we would like to change to a fifth wheel and truck combo.
Tell me, is a 1500 Ram/150 Ford up for the job of towing a 30ft trailer?
1500/150s are plentiful over here, 2500/250s a bit rarer, and what is the difference please?

Regards,

Craig
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Old 06-15-2012, 09:23 AM   #2
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Tell me, is a 1500 Ram/150 Ford up for the job of towing a 30ft trailer?
30-foot Fifth wheel? No. Even if you found a beefed-up half-ton with the heavy duty payload and towing packages, a 30-footer would overload the truck over the GVWR of the truck.

A 30-foot medium-priced 5er will have a GVWR of about 10,000 to 12,000 pounds, depending on your definition of 30'. For example, a Keystone Cooper Canyon by Sprinter, model 275FWBHS is about 31' long from tip to tail outside measurement, and has a GVWR of 10,515. Wet and loaded Hitch weight will be about 17 percent, or about 1500 to 1600 pounds. The similar model 292FWBHS is about 30' inside measurement and has a GVWR of 11,905, with wet and loaded hitch weight of about 2025 pounds.

A 2012 F-150 with 5.0L engine and 3.73 axle ratio will have a GCWR of around 15,000 pounds. Wet and loaded for the road the truck will weigh about 6,000 pounds, leaving a max of about 9,000 pounds for trailer weight. Payload available for hitch weight will be a max of less than 1,500 pounds even with the heavy duty payload pkg, and can be as little as 500 pounds without towing and payload packages.

So even the smaller of those two trailers will overload even the most robust of the F-150s. Dodge and GM half-ton pickups have similar specs, so if you want a 30' 5er, then forget about the half ton pickups and look for a properly-equipped three-quarter ton pickup.

Quote:
1500/150s are plentiful over here, 2500/250s a bit rarer, and what is the difference please?
The differences that count are GVWR and GCWR.

The GVWR (determines payload or hauling capacity) of the new F-150s varies from about 7,000 to 8,200 pounds, depending on options. The GVWR of F-250s is 10,000 pounds. The F-250 is a lot heavier, but the increase in payload is at least 1,000 pounds, which you need for the hitch weight of a 30' 5er.

The GCWR (determines pulling power available without bending, breaking, or overheating anything) for the F-150 with the optional maximum towing package is about 15,000 pounds with the 5.0L engine and 3.73 axle ratio. 2011-up with the EcoBoost engine and 3.73 axle ratio has GCWR up to 17,100 pounds. The F-250 with gas engine and 4.30 axle ratio is 22,000, or with diesel engine and any available axle ratio is 23,500.

The differences in weight capacity include heavier duty brakes, tires, wheels, transmission, rear axle, and frame. But don't get wrapped up in those differences and concentrate on the results, as indicated by the GVWR and GCWR of the truck.

For estimating purposes, GVWR of the tow vehicle is more likely to be your limiter than GCWR. Assume 5er hitch weight will be at least 17 percent of the GVWR of the trailer. Ignore "dry" weights of the trailer, and use the GVWR of the trailer as the probable trailer weight when wet and loaded for an RV trip.

Manufacturer's "tow ratings" are notoriously overstated. Subtract about 1,000 pounds from those tow ratings to determine a realistic tow rating so you won't exceed the GCWR when wet and loaded for the road. But even then, the GVWR and not the realistic tow rating will probably be your limiter with an F-150 or F-250 tow vehicle.
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Old 06-16-2012, 09:17 AM   #3
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Well thank you for a most informative explanation. Now I know what I need to buy, when the time is right.
I really appreciate your answer to my question.

Regards,

Craig
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Old 06-16-2012, 01:15 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokeyWren

30-foot Fifth wheel? No. Even if you found a beefed-up half-ton with the heavy duty payload and towing packages, a 30-footer would overload the truck over the GVWR of the truck.

A 30-foot medium-priced 5er will have a GVWR of about 10,000 to 12,000 pounds, depending on your definition of 30'. For example, a Keystone Cooper Canyon by Sprinter, model 275FWBHS is about 31' long from tip to tail outside measurement, and has a GVWR of 10,515. Wet and loaded Hitch weight will be about 17 percent, or about 1500 to 1600 pounds. The similar model 292FWBHS is about 30' inside measurement and has a GVWR of 11,905, with wet and loaded hitch weight of about 2025 pounds.

A 2012 F-150 with 5.0L engine and 3.73 axle ratio will have a GCWR of around 15,000 pounds. Wet and loaded for the road the truck will weigh about 6,000 pounds, leaving a max of about 9,000 pounds for trailer weight. Payload available for hitch weight will be a max of less than 1,500 pounds even with the heavy duty payload pkg, and can be as little as 500 pounds without towing and payload packages.

So even the smaller of those two trailers will overload even the most robust of the F-150s. Dodge and GM half-ton pickups have similar specs, so if you want a 30' 5er, then forget about the half ton pickups and look for a properly-equipped three-quarter ton pickup.

The differences that count are GVWR and GCWR.

The GVWR (determines payload or hauling capacity) of the new F-150s varies from about 7,000 to 8,200 pounds, depending on options. The GVWR of F-250s is 10,000 pounds. The F-250 is a lot heavier, but the increase in payload is at least 1,000 pounds, which you need for the hitch weight of a 30' 5er.

The GCWR (determines pulling power available without bending, breaking, or overheating anything) for the F-150 with the optional maximum towing package is about 15,000 pounds with the 5.0L engine and 3.73 axle ratio. 2011-up with the EcoBoost engine and 3.73 axle ratio has GCWR up to 17,100 pounds. The F-250 with gas engine and 4.30 axle ratio is 22,000, or with diesel engine and any available axle ratio is 23,500.

The differences in weight capacity include heavier duty brakes, tires, wheels, transmission, rear axle, and frame. But don't get wrapped up in those differences and concentrate on the results, as indicated by the GVWR and GCWR of the truck.

For estimating purposes, GVWR of the tow vehicle is more likely to be your limiter than GCWR. Assume 5er hitch weight will be at least 17 percent of the GVWR of the trailer. Ignore "dry" weights of the trailer, and use the GVWR of the trailer as the probable trailer weight when wet and loaded for an RV trip.

Manufacturer's "tow ratings" are notoriously overstated. Subtract about 1,000 pounds from those tow ratings to determine a realistic tow rating so you won't exceed the GCWR when wet and loaded for the road. But even then, the GVWR and not the realistic tow rating will probably be your limiter with an F-150 or F-250 tow vehicle.
What a great explanation. No bashing or anything just facts. Great job!
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Old 06-16-2012, 02:48 PM   #5
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You will love the stability of a 5er. No more tail waggin' the dog.
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Old 06-16-2012, 03:38 PM   #6
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SmokeyWren does it again! Awesome answer....gotta love this site!
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Old 06-16-2012, 05:03 PM   #7
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I gotta admit, that is one of the best answers i have had from any question i have posed on any forum. Nice one!

Craig
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Old 06-16-2012, 05:13 PM   #8
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He made it all up. None of it is true.
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Old 06-16-2012, 05:39 PM   #9
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I see far too many big trailers with small trucks pulling them.. I blame the auto companies which often show a pick up towing a load several times the max tow rating of the truck (You can do it safely, for a short distance, in low gear, on a closed track, but do not try it at freeway speeds on a freeway).

What do I recommend: Goole "Trail Hauler" It will tow your trailer, no questions.

Heck, it might even tow my brother's trailer depending on the model you buy (Brother drive a Semi licensed for 80 tons, not 80,000 pounds but 80 tons) Would tow it empty.
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Old 06-16-2012, 06:29 PM   #10
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I just seen a Chevy Colorado pulling a huge TT on the interstate! Talk about doing a double take/steer hard away!
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Old 06-16-2012, 09:17 PM   #11
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I gotta admit, that is one of the best answers i have had from any question i have posed on any forum. Nice one!

Craig
Thanx for the flowers, Craig. We can't have our British friends wind up in jail for being overloaded, so I thought I'd best pump you up with the straight skinny.
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Old 06-17-2012, 10:49 PM   #12
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Hi all! I am new to iRV2, and l live in the UK. I have an Itasca Sunrise at the moment, but we would like to change to a fifth wheel and truck combo.
Tell me, is a 1500 Ram/150 Ford up for the job of towing a 30ft trailer?
1500/150s are plentiful over here, 2500/250s a bit rarer, and what is the difference please?

Regards,

Craig
Much depends on the 1/2 ton truck as not all 1/2 ton trucks are rated the same over here.
For example the '01 to '05 chevy 1500HD has a 8600 GVWR with 6000 lb RAWR 10 ply rated tires and wheels. It has over 3000 lbs of payload and over 10k tow rating. The new 1500 GM trucks are standard duty and don't have that much capacity.

The '02 to '08 1500 Dodge Mega cab has a 8510 GVWR with 6010 RAWR and 10 ply tires and E rated wheels. It has a 9000 lb tow rating. The new standard duty 1500 Dodge trucks don't have those big numbers either. The 1500 Mega cab was dropped in '08.

Ford currently has a F150HD package with a 8200 GVWR with a 4800 RAWR and over 3000 lb of payload. It comes with 10 ply rated tires. Tow rating run up to 11200 lbs.

Specs for above trucks depend on its actual configuration. You simply can't lump all 1/2 trucks as having the same tow/haul capacities.

A 30' 5th wheel comes in all weights from 7000 lbs on over 12000-13000 lbs depending on year and model configuration. Just like the truck, you can't say all 30' trailers weigh the same.

Now if you could give us some trailer weight numbers
or
give us the trucks specs such as year model/axle and tire ratings/engine size/gear ratio/etc we can give you a idea of what it takes.

Some posters don't believe a 1/2 ton truck can pull a 5th wheel trailer even within the truck manufacturers specs. So take all opinions as just that.... opinions. The trucks particular specs tells all.
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Old 06-18-2012, 02:03 AM   #13
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The trailer I have seen is a Keystone Laredo 265rl, hitch weight is 1,360lbs, and a dry weight of 7,774lbs.

Craig
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Old 06-18-2012, 08:55 PM   #14
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A 7774 lb dry trailer weight will most likely be close to 9000-9500 lbs loaded. I would guess the trailers GVWR is in the 9000 lb or 10000 lbs which puts it in the heavy trailer class.

The 1360 lb dry hitch weight will most likely be closer to 1600-1800 lbs when the trailer is loaded which will eliminate standard duty 1/2 ton trucks (under 8000 GVWR).
The F150HD/1500 HD GM and the 1500 Mega cab Dodge with the specs/year model I mentioned above will handle that size 5er. However those heavy duty 1/2 ton truck may not have been marketed over there.
OR as others say any of the 5.x/6.x smallblock engine 3/4 ton trucks will work although a 10k + trailer will give the smallblock a good workout in the big hills or western US mountains.
GM 2500 trucks up to '08 I think came with a 8.1 big block engine and is a strong performer for that size trailer. Ford V10 in the F250 in about the same years, is another strong performer and equals the 8.1 GM.
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