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Old 10-24-2013, 12:51 PM   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2013
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Freedom express and half ton

Hi, just signed up here as I am seriously getting in the market for a toy hauler. Already have my first question.

My truck is an 2011 F150 SCREW 4x4 with 3.73 gears and the 5.0 engine. Has an integrated TBC. Has the towing package but not max payload or max tow. Towing capacity is 9300 with 1312 payload. I towed 8000 with it from arkansas to alaska and know it would pull it safely.

Trailer in question is a 2014 Coachmen Freedom Express 301BLDS. Specs are....

Hitch weight- 980
Dry weight- 6170
Cargo capacity- 3688

With me the wife and the dog that would put my payload down to about 980. Not worried about hitting the 9300lb limit because it will be mainly for weekend trips so we will not be loaded down to the hilt. My worry is the hitch weight, I know with a polaris RZR in the garage it will take some weight off the hitch but I am not sure where the tanks are on the trailer if that would add more tongue weight. I have seen people post their weights loaded and unloaded with TH and sometimes it seems the hitch weight does not go up much due to having all the weight in the back.

The obvious things I know is that I would be better off with a F250, but that is not going to happen as my truck is less than two years old and wife will not go along with trading it in (she makes more than I do so she has a legitimate say in this). I have basically already told her we would possibly be overweight but she seems stuck on this trailer and I do admit it is very nice.

The other problem is finding a toy hauler that is half ton friendly that will fit a polaris rzr height and length wise. Seems like they are hard to find and to complicate things more we live in Alaska where selection is very limited. The seller said he towed it with a 1500 Ram quad cab no problems, and I have seen other video review saying it is half ton friendly.

Any words of wisdom from the experts here? Would I be ok pulling this at least until my truck gets a little older and I can justify moving up to a 3/4 or 1 ton?

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Old 10-26-2013, 02:35 PM   #2
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Damon Owners Club
Workhorse Chassis Owner
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: San Diego, CA
Posts: 10,584

Staying within the mfgt's ratings is the bottom line. You admit it is close, but sounds like it should work.

I towed a TT with a F150 standard cab with 3.73 and 5.0, but it had a manual tranny...never had a problem. However after upgrading to a F350 to tow a much bigger trailer, the auto tranny showed itself to be the weak link...bet you have an auto, right?

So, while you can probably tow the set-up you describe, I strongly recommend you consider adding an external transmission fluid cooler. Also, a weight distribution hitch will make a world of difference in the ride and safety on the road with a heavy trailer on a half ton.

Best luck

Kim and Steve, Mustang LCDR (Ret), '07 Damon Outlaw #1193
I have seen gross intolerance shown in support of tolerance, Samuel Coleridge
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Old 11-05-2013, 03:23 PM   #3
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Join Date: Oct 2013
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Thanks for the reply. After about a couple weeks of looking for alternative toy haulers and weighing my options I went ahead and traded up to an f350. Even if I were loaded to the 9300lb limit on the f150 I am sure it would not have been an easy tow in the mountains and bad roads in alaska. Told myself and the wife we would keep the f150 for a long time but found out the hard way I should have got a bigger truck in the first place. I cant imagine ever needing anything bigger than the 350 though so it opens up options in the future. I really like the idea of having the 1 ton and not having to worry about how much weight I put in the bed or on the tongue so much as long as I dont go over the 1250 or whatever limit for conventional towing.
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