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Old 06-09-2006, 06:42 AM   #15
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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 RKamperRV:
I have the 2001 Chevy 2500HD Duramax Crewcab long bed. We recently purchased a Crossroads Cruiser CF32BL that has a bunk room slide out. The GVWR of the Cruiser is slightly under 12,000 lbs. and is well within the weight limits of the truck. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Just to run a little exercise, if your Cruiser carries 20% of its weight as pin weight and you're loaded anywhere near the trailer's GVWR, that would be 12,000 x 20% = 2,400 lbs carried by the truck. Now, giving you the benefit of the doubt, if your truck has a 9,200 lb (instead of the more typical 8,800 lb) GVWR, then the most the truck can weigh with driver, passengers, accessories, full fuel tanks, cargo, etc. without exceeding its GVWR is 9,200 - 2,400 = 6,800 lbs. My truck, with just Sandy and me and 2 Shelties, weighs 7,680 lbs, and it's not a crew cab.

IMHO, a scale ticket could prove to be interesting.

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Old 06-09-2006, 07:15 AM   #16
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Frank,

I'm in the same situation as you. I've learned a lot from these guys, but you must do your own in depth research.

Several of these guys have mentioned what I've learned by comparing configurations and ratings. What I've found is that with a 2500/250 you start running out of "payload capacity" (GVWR) pretty quick. I've also discovered that you'll run out of GVWR well before you run out of GCWR. This is because a fifth wheel imposes 17-22 percent of its weight on the bed of the truck. Of course this is also why they tow so well (how many 18 wheelers have you seen using a bumper hitch?).

For me however there is another thing to consider. My truck's primary mission is to take me to work and back. As you add towing capability you also add weight which cots down on MPG and accelerates tire wear. Duallys in particular wear rear tires faster than SRW because at least two of the tires are always out of line with the front tires when turning.

My research has shown that the 3/4 ton with the most distance between curb weight and GVWR is the Chevy. I've discovered that based on numbers alone it has the greatest capacity and is the lightest to start with.

Hope that helps
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Old 06-09-2006, 07:54 AM   #17
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Rusty,

Here are the numbers on my truck:

Technical Data:
2001 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD Crew Cab 4X4 long box
Type 4-door, 6-passenger full-size pickup
Layout longitudinal front engine/4WD
Engine 6.6 litre V8 diesel, turbocharged
Horsepower 300 @ 3100 rpm
Torque 520 ft-lb. @ 1800 rpm
Transmission 5-speed automatic (std. 6 speed manual)
Max. trailer capacity 5443 kg (12,000 lb.)
Max. 5th wheel 7212 kg (15,800 lb.)
Max. payload 1790 kg (3,947 lb.)
Max. GVWR 4173 kg (9,200 lb.)
Wheelbase 4242 mm (167.0 in.)
Length 6507 mm (256.2 in.)
Width 2438 mm (96.0 in.)
Height 1877 mm (73.9 in.)
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Old 06-09-2006, 08:04 AM   #18
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OK, the 9200 lb GVWR I used in my thumbnail calculation above is accurate. Here are my gripes with the manufacturer's ratings:

You show a maximum 5th wheel capacity of 15,800 lbs. That's calculated as follows: GCWR (not shown in your specs) - curb weight. There are two problems with this:

1. The curb weight used in the calculation is generally for a base model truck (no options or accessories) with only a 150 lb driver. This is usually buried in the fine print.

2. Also buried in the fine print is the admonition to the effect that "none of the truck's ratings are to be exceeded" when towing a trailer. This is where the limited GVWR of a 3/4 ton SRW truck will jump up and bite a purchaser, and this GVWR limitation isn't even reflected in the trailer tow rating calculation. That's why a lighter 3/4 ton truck can have a higher manufacturer's trailer tow rating than a heavier 1 ton dually, but the facts are that the 3/4 ton truck, when towing a 5th wheel, will typically exceed its GVWR long before it maxes out its GCWR. In the real world, the 1 ton dually can tow a heavier 5th wheel trailer before exceeding either its higher GVWR or GCWR.

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Old 06-09-2006, 08:44 AM   #19
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">if your Cruiser carries 20% of its weight as pin weight and you're loaded anywhere near the trailer's GVWR, that would be 12,000 x 20% = 2,400 lbs carried by the truck. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Rusty,

The Crossroad Brochure indicates a hitch weight of 1,775# for Rick's C32BL which is 21.0% of its 8,450# dry weight.

It's a real nice trailer, I got the official tour at Walnut Hills this past weekend. Rick said it tows real nice and the truck handles it like a breeze.
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Old 06-09-2006, 08:50 AM   #20
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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 Hitchhiker:
Rusty,

The Crossroad Brochure indicates a hitch weight of 1,775# for Rick's C32BL which is 21.0% of its 8,450# dry weight. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>That's interesting, but I wasn't basing my calculations off of "dry weight". What matters is the actual weight of the trailer with options, cargo, food, clothing, propane, etc. as it's going down the road, and in most cases that's closer to the trailer's GVWR than it is the trailer's dry weight. Using the trailer's GVWR as its laden weight is a conservative approach in sizing a tow vehicle if actual data (as in this case) is unavailable.

The intent of this exercise is not to praise or criticize Rick's selection of tow vehicle and trailer, but to use the information he provided to illustrate to those who may not be aware how to use the numbers to size a tow vehicle to a trailer, or vice versa, which was the original poster's question.

Rusty
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Old 06-09-2006, 09:31 AM   #21
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Rusty,

In all of my calculations when I was considering the truck in 2001 and looking at trailers at that time, I tried to be very conservative. When we bought the Cruiser last month I maintained the same conservative approach.

With added options (running boards, bed cover) and 2 passengers + a dog I calculate that I have a safe payload in the truck of 3,300 lbs. To give myself some additional margin, I reduced that to 3,000 lbs. when considering the trailer purchase. Then to provide additional margin I wanted to stay at, or under, 80% capacity - 2,400 lbs.

Then, when considering trailers I used the absolute maximum weights advertised and rounded up to the nearest 1,000 lbs. In this case, the Cruiser, loaded to capacity, would weigh just under 12,000 lbs. With a 20% pin weight of 2,400 at maximum capacity the unit falls well within the truck's specifications.

Then, when we got the new trailer we tried to be very conservative in loading all of our stuff to keep the trailer well below the maximum weight.

Then comes actual truck performance. With the trailer hooked up, the truck sits level, not tail low. While towing the trailer it performs easily in acceleration, towing at speed, maintaining speed on an incline (even using cruise - no hunting), braking, controlling speed on a decline. Fuel performance is in the 11-14 mpg range at various speeds and terrain.

While Chevy has changed the specs on their trucks since 2001, the '01 2500HD and 3500HD had the exact same towing capacity. The only difference between the two was payload with the 2500HD at 3,300 +/- and the 3500HD at 5,300 +/-.
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Old 06-09-2006, 09:43 AM   #22
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Well, let's put the actual formulas out on the board. If one already has a truck, then a trip to the scales with driver, passengers, pets, cargo, hitch, accessories (tool boxes, auxiliary fuel tanks, etc), cargo and a full fuel tank - just like one was heading down the road - will provide the trucks laden curb weight (LCW).

With the LCW and knowing the truck's gross combined weight rating (GCWR) and gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR), the following formulas can be used to size a trailer:

Truck's GCWR - Truck's LCW = maximum total weight of loaded trailer

Truck's GVWR - Truck's LCW = maximum pin/hitch weight of loaded trailer

As mentioned earlier, since a trailer shopper won't know the loaded weight of a trailer sitting on a lot, a conservative approach is to use the trailer's GVWR as the total loaded weight and 12% (for TT) or 20% (for 5th wheel) of the trailer's GVWR as the pin/hitch weight of the loaded trailer.

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Old 06-09-2006, 10:02 AM   #23
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I concur. And, as mentioned above, I did use your conservative approach for calculating the trailer weight when deciding to purchase the Cruiser.

There is one issue in our area - public scales are not available - at least not that I've been able to find.
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Old 06-09-2006, 10:19 AM   #24
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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 RKamperRV:
There is one issue in our area - public scales are not available - at least not that I've been able to find. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Most truck stops have them. It's $10 or less to get weighed.

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Old 06-09-2006, 11:31 AM   #25
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We don't have any nearby truck stops - not near any major Interstate.
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Old 06-09-2006, 12:01 PM   #26
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You might also find scales at grain elevators or at soil and gravel pits where they sell by weight.

Rusty
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Old 06-09-2006, 04:09 PM   #27
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Firecapt you are receiving a free clinic here with some good info. One thing I wish to add is a personal preference that I will never buy another deisel pu without 4x4. When empty the deisel is a heavy load on the front with a light load on the rear axel makes for poor traction. Three times I have had to be assiste a short distance and once with the fifth on.
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Old 06-09-2006, 06:26 PM   #28
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I concur with that also - 4x4 is the only way to go.

Rusty - no grain elevators here either - one or two stone quarrys, but they are very restrctive as to scale use. Public scales are just not a common item here in the east as trucks are normally only used for corporate reasons. Us RVers are a new arrival on the truck scene.
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