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Old 02-08-2005, 03:53 AM   #15
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by TXiceman:
Like some have said,small pick up and 5er just don't really go together. But we don't know if you are lokinf for a small 5er or a larger one. With a properly equipped 1/2 ton truck F-150 or 1500), you will hit you max around a 24' trailer. So not knowing what sie trailer, we are trying to paint with a really broad brush to give you the facts.

Here was my personal situation of 1/2 ton truck and 5ver up to about a year ago. I was towing my 28' ULTRALITE (GVWR 6900 Lbs) 5ver with a 2001 Dodge Ram 1500, quad cab long bed 2wd. I thought all was fine, truck did great handling the trailer. Made several long trips with this rig. Then I really started paying heed to this site and the threads on GVW and GCVWR. I finally decided to weigh everything and see where I was. I was well under my GCVWR, but a few hundred pounds over the GVWR. In my experiance, even the lightest 5 vers are pushing the limits of 1/2 ton trucks. I realize the new 1/2 tons have increased their ratings and may be better suited to towing small 5 vers. Moral of the story, make sure have the right truck to do the job safely.

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Old 02-08-2005, 06:11 AM   #16
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Another thought. Tell us about your MH. What style, class A, or class C, probably not a Class B, engine size, GCVWR, GVWR, and actual weight. With this info maybe someone can jump in here and tell you how feasable/reasonable to tow a car with your present MH. By reading between the lines I think you want something to drive after you get where you are going that is smaller than you should use for a TV. Also do you plan on going fulltime or just a week or two at a time. Even with the smallest trailers you are going to be over 30' long, making it harder to find places to park at places like you discribed.


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Old 02-08-2005, 07:20 AM   #17
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I towed a 5er with a 3/4 ton and now with a 1 ton dually. I'll never go back. And it is my daily driver too. No problems driving it around town or town or thru the country.

As long as I'm towing a 5er, I will always do so with a dually.
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Old 02-08-2005, 02:17 PM   #18
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I feel like such an idiot. I am just starting to learn what these terms mean (engine size, GCVWR, GVWR, and actual weight), and since the Class A 24 foot MH is parked a considerable distance away with all the manuals in the vehicle, it may be a couple of weeks before I can look this information up. It never occurred to us that the MH might not be capable of towing a car!!

I do appreciate all the input. You are all very kind.

We both like the "camping" part of RVing, but after our first 4 long weekends in the MH (we bought it at the end of August and have taken only 4 trips), I now require tranquilizers to clean the thing when it is parked in our driveway!! and my husband, while not as "concerned" about the "location" of the passenger side of the MH as I am, finds the driver's seat very uncomfortable. It may have a lot of bells and whistles that make "camping" very comfortable (appliances, TV, etc.), but the driver's seat cannot be adjusted!!

We have been married 33 years, and I think this is the first time I have ever screamed at my husband, but when we are driving on a narrow road or a city street, it looks - from the passenger seat - like we are going sideswipe everything in our path!!

From what you guys have said, I am now not sure buying a truck and towing a 5th wheel would solve "my" problem if it would be necessary to buy a truck that is as wide as the MH.

But we may explore the possibility of towing a car, and just staying out of cities and off narrow roads with the MH if we can figure out if the MH can tow a Saturn Ion.

We were not contemplating RVing full time when my husband retires. We have been fortunate enough to see most of the world before it got so dangerous, purposefully waiting til retirement to see those parts of the USA we haven't yet visited. Our "plan" was to travel about 1/3 of the year after retirement, maybe a month or so each season.

Again, I thank you all for the advice and maybe when we go out to visit the MH (to run the engine and the generator) and retrieve the manuals, I may better understand some of the terms you are using.

This evening, a friend brought her 1996 Dodge Dakota over and it just fit in our garage, but she warned us that the newer ones were larger and wider.

But if we can't figure out how to do this without heavy duty medication, we will probably just give up on camping
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Old 02-08-2005, 04:43 PM   #19
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When we got our first class A it bother both of us when sitting in the passenger seat. Since it is so wide and you do sit outboard when compare to a car it seems like you are about to take out every sign along the road. But you do get use to it. A class C will have a narrower cab, and be more like driving a van, but you still have a body behind the cab that is 8 to 8-1/2 feet wide.

A full size 3/4 ton or 1 ton truck cab will be no wider than a class C cab in the cab area.

If you can barely fit a Dakota in your garage and you must garage a vehicle, you can pretty much forget about a 5th wheel trailer. The Dakota is smaller than a true 1/2 ton truck.

We have had a pop up, two travel trailers, 2 class A's, a class C and our current 36.5' 5th wheel. The fifth wheel and truck measure 53' nose to tail when hooked up and right at 20,000# GCW. The largest rig we have ever owned and by far the easiest to drive and my wife even agrees with that statement.

I don't know much else to tell you. Small trucks are meant for small trailers and a large trailer takes a large truck. Just don't get sucked in by a smooth talking salesman. They will tell you that the QE II can be towed by a Ford Ranger.

Best of luck and post any questions you have.

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Old 02-08-2005, 06:54 PM   #20
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After reading your latest post, I have to say that you should not give up on camping. It is the greatest adventure in the world. I work in a very high stress job and the best I have felt in a long time was when we recently spent four days at Emerald Cove RV Park (Parker, AZ). It was the most relaxing time I have had in a long time. I wish I could have stayed for four weeks instead of four days. There should be no stress involved in camping. That said:

It took me a couple of trips to get used to towing our 34' fiver. I had never towed anything that big and heavy. Our first trip was a bit nerve racking for me. By our third trip, I nearly forgot the thing was behind me. The fiver handles nicely and my truck (see signature) handles it very well. I use my truck as my commute vehicle also. I have no problems driving it around town or anywhere else. I dont know what your requirements are for garaging your vehicles, but my truck sits ouside all the time. It wont fit in my garage. It is none the worse for wear by sitting outside.

You guys have to assess your needs and then decide on what will be the best solution for you, whether it be keeping your MH, buying a new MH or moving to a fiver or travel trailer. you will have to figure out what kind of trips you will be making and how far away you will be going. For long trips, driver comfort is going to be important. Since i work out of a car for 8 1/2 hours a day, I find that I can no longer spend long periods behind the wheel without getting uncomfortable. I take frequent driving brakes every two hours or so. Ten minute stops to stretch out and use the restroom. Works very well for me.

I dont know what to say as far as your personal phobia. My wife is the same way. She constantly tells me how to drive and grabs the "Oh my God" handle bolted to the roof. I just tell her to shut up and take a benadryl. Once that kicks in she relaxes and the rest of the trip is good.

Good luck with whatever you decide. Camping was meant to be fun. Let us know how things go.
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Old 02-09-2005, 04:23 AM   #21
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Bee, Don't give up just yet. It will take a few trips to get used to driving around in the motorhome. All of us were new to RVing at one time and just as nervous driving around with our house on wheels. I find my self being able to manuver my rig through situations that years ago I wouldn't have attempted with a VW bug. It takes time and practice to get used to it.
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Old 02-09-2005, 06:15 AM   #22
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Like Rick said "Don't give up just yet". In a Class A MH is like being in a big box that gives you as a passenger the feeling you are hanging out over the next lane trying to wipe out everything you come to. If you had never been in a car you would probably get the same feeling at first. With MH you don't have the front end in front of the windshield to better judge where you are in comparison to other cars etc. When you have time to get your MH out, take it to a parking lot with a lot of room and have a friend bring a small car and pull along side of your side of the MH, about a foot away, and I am betting you will be looking at the top of their car, not in their window like you would from your car. Also have your husband pull up to a pole, if available, just so the mirror will just miss so you can see what it looks like.
With a very few exceptions, the streets in towns are quite adequate for the big trucks, fire trucks etc. It's just the perception that you are closed in. Their lanes are probably the same width as the highways. If your husband is comfortable driving it, do like you would on a bus and leave the driving to him and enjoy the scenery.
If your husband is comfortable driving in town, try looking more foward & left so you don't look rigt a what's going by on your side. You can't do anything about it anyway. If that is not enough, try sitting behind him.
I apolagise for throwing a bunch of abrieviations at you. Here is a list of meanings.
GVWR= The total weight the manufacture rates the vehicle for.
GVW= The total weight it weighs at a given time.
GCVWR= The total weight of the vehicle+ the total weight it is towing that the manufacture rates it for.
GCVW= The total weight of vehicle + total weight of what is being towed at a given time.
TV= Tow vehicle.
I hope you can learn to enjoy your RV travels.

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Old 02-09-2005, 10:29 AM   #23
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you are getting some very good advise. I am going to go a different direction. Do you enjoy your current motorhome? Does it have everything you would like in a motorhome? Is it fairly new? If the answers are yes, yes, and yes, the driver's seat can probably be retrofitted with an adjustable seat, an auxiliary transmission can be installed, for much less money than a pickup or a trailer, that'll make you feel like a toad isn't even there. If there isn't a hitch on the back, one can be fabricated to fit your specific MH. If you are now worried about braking with a toad, they even have seperate braking systems that work in tandam with your MH brakes. You could do all this for much, much less than buying a different tow vehicle and trailer. And as others have said, it may take a few more times until you can fully relax while travelling. It is a new experience, so just slow down and take it easy. Just my opinion. John

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Old 02-10-2005, 04:26 AM   #24
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We started RV'ing with a 20 foot Class B on a Dodge one ton van chassis. My wife was so nervous in the passenger seat that by the time we reached San Antonio on our first trip I was ready to sell the thing and fly home!!!

We now have a 28' fiver and a 3/4 ton Chevy and while I do not know wether she "got used to it" or the truck offers a totally different perspective, she feels real safe in the rig.

I still say, go to dealers and take some test drives, you'll quickly know wether a truck is for you. Good Luck.
Bob and Lois, Snowbirds!

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Old 03-07-2005, 08:03 PM   #25
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We can fit our 2500 GMC Sierra Diesal in our garage. It is tight and I had to change sides with my husband so it would fit but it does work. Neither one of us wants to park outside as it gets very hot here in FL and is miserable when getting into a vehicle that has been sitting in the sun. The one thing he was adamant about when purchasing was that it would fit inside the garage. We also tow a 35 ft 5th wheel with a long slide. Bumper to bumper we are about 51 ft long. I have driven it a few times and have really liked the ride. I didn't even realize that I was towing anything. We have a slider hitch for our 5th as we bought the short bed PU. We got the PU just for the reasons you stated: hauling things in the bed. Our hitch comes apart in 3 pieces that makes it able to be moved by one person and the PU bed is able to be completely functionable when we are not hauling our RV. Good luck on whatever you decide to do.

Nadine, Steve, and Kelsea

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