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Old 02-24-2014, 10:37 PM   #29
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I guess I'll just chime in as well. Bought out 26' TT two years ago. Upgraded from a pop-up. I can remember pulling the pop-up through the Flint Hills of Kansas behind our Honda Ridgeline and our Toyota Sienna, talk about sway! I didn't have a sway bar and never thought twice about how the weight was distributed.

Now with the TT, I have a WDH and sway bar setup. I take care not to put too much weight in the camper at all if I can help it, rarely carrying water. When I have any waste in the back tanks, I notice more sway. I will say that honestly I've not really experienced any sway that scared me, or my DW. I'm pulling with a Nissan Armada and I'm about at the top end of its capacity both on the hitch weight, and the towing capacity when fully loaded (I say top end, I can pull 9000lbs, but I like to keep the combined to less than 8000 to be safest).

My dad has pulled several 5ers since they retired and has had more than enough reports of white knuckle driving due to sway. Wind with a her is more problematic as it sits up higher. You not only are pushed around more by cross wind, but head wind also. I also second the notion that while you don't feel the sway as much with a 5'er, you are probably just getting a false sense of security. The trailer might still be moving around, but with the tow point closer to the center of the TV, you aren't getting your rear ends pulled as much...

We chose the TT because we still like to have the cabin room inside the tow vehicle. We travel with 2 kids and a dog. Plus at some point we might be taking friends or cousins on trips with us, so the 3rd row seat will be needed. (although maybe I should get a truck, just to be sure that we can never have more than the four of us, if I were smart!). With that said, I have even considered getting a large passenger type van in a few years, 3/4 ton or 1 ton so that I can pull as slightly larger trailer. Or at least be able to haul 6 passengers, a dog, and whatever else we might need in the vehicle during a long trip.

Yes, that van would be overkill the 99% of the year when we aren't towing, but that isn't really the point is it!

I'd say go the TT route, as then you have more flexibility of what tow vehicle you use, and how you can use your tow vehicle when you aren't towing.
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Old 02-25-2014, 12:28 AM   #30
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When I have any waste in the back tanks, I notice more sway. I will say that.
I have to wonder how much of the sway, and bad manners is due to people not understanding trailer dynamics, and a failure to understand loading. It is not so much how much weight, as where it is.
I build all my utility trailers, to haul my plane, and other stuff, and it pays not to put heavy weight far in the rear, even if balanced well, it tends to wag the dog.through simple leverage.
Variable weight items should be over the axels, and no heavy stuff back in the rear.. Sticking heavy weight in the rear is something I notice a lot of trailer manufacturers do, and that I find it worries me when I see it.
I am no expert at trailer design, but I have built enough trailers, and put them enough to know certain things are important in the design
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Old 02-25-2014, 12:51 AM   #31
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I have towed both. I've towed is some pretty good cross winds. The TT will move around and the 5'er stays planted. I could look in the truck mirrors and see the TT moving. Couldn't see the 5'er moving at all. One thing no one mentions is what happens when you pass a semi side by side with a TT or a 5'er. The TT and truck will get sucked in then pushed out. With a 5'er you don't feel that.
I would much rather have a 5'er moving and the truck not than the truck and TT both moving.
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Old 02-25-2014, 08:27 AM   #32
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I have towed both. I've towed is some pretty good cross winds. The TT will move around and the 5'er stays planted. I could look in the truck mirrors and see the TT moving. Couldn't see the 5'er moving at all. One thing no one mentions is what happens when you pass a semi side by side with a TT or a 5'er. The TT and truck will get sucked in then pushed out. With a 5'er you don't feel that.
I would much rather have a 5'er moving and the truck not than the truck and TT both moving.
I'm not sure I totally understand. How can a truck pulling travel trailer, and the same truck pulling a fifth wheel react differently when passed by a semi? I might be able to understand if the trailers moved differently, considering they are hitched differently.
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Old 02-25-2014, 09:00 AM   #33
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IamJerryP…how do you want to use your 5r or TT? Is it for extended trips, weekends? Few times a year? How many people will be sleeping/eating in it? Dogs/Cats?
5 years ago when we started our RV search, we ended with a Airstream trailer…loved it! However, if we had seen the recent TT coming from Winnebago (and 5th wheels), we might have been swayed to purchase one of those over our Airstream…and saved a heck of a lot of $$$! After spending a couple months at a time in a TT without slides and two large labs, a 5th wheel would have been a lot more comfortable. A couple years later, we got into a MH and haven't looked back.
But do ask yourself how you want to use your towable, storage you might think you need, if you want to boondock, and how comfortable you want to be. There is no right/wrong answer here…its personal preference. Good luck in your search and whatever you choose, make sure your tow system is number one…
Safe Travels
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Old 02-25-2014, 01:06 PM   #34
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I'm not sure I totally understand. How can a truck pulling travel trailer, and the same truck pulling a fifth wheel react differently when passed by a semi? I might be able to understand if the trailers moved differently, considering they are hitched differently.
It's very simple. Because the 5'er is connected above the axle of the truck the pivot point is different.
When a TT is connected some 60+" behind the axle it reacts to the rear of the truck different.
That's why a Hensley Arrow or Pro Pride hitch is superior to a standard WDH. It removes the 60+" dimension that is normal and creates it's own pivot point.
I don't really know how to explain it in engineering terms but from the seat of my pants I can tell you that running 60-65mph and over taking a semi doing 60mph with my 5'er I don't feel anything as far a the push pull or the wind jostling the 5'er around.
With the TT you get moved around in your lane until you finally get by the semi.
My 5'er has is 2' longer body wise than my previous TT and roughly 1'2" taller, so it has more sqft on it's side. You would think that with more side sqft that it would be more susceptible to sway from side winds. But 5'ers aren't because of the pivot point they're being towed from.
I'm sure there's a point to which both are susceptible to high side winds. It's just that a 5'er has a much higher rate of susceptibility. Both will be blown over at some point but the 5'er and it's truck will feel more stabile with higher winds than a truck and TT with a normal WDH.
And I'm sure the proper truck has something to do with it. Put a 38' 5'er weighing 16,000lbs behind a 3/4 ton SB truck and it probably won't be as stabile as a 1 ton dually. Same goes for TT's. Put a 5000lbs 24' TT behind a 3/4 ton truck and you probably would notice very little movement. Put that same TT behind a mid size SUV and it probably won't be as good of tow as a even an 1/2 ton truck.
Point being there's more leeway with 5'ers because of the pivot point being right over the top of the rear axle which makes them more stabile.

Try and find a post about a 5'er with sway problems. Do you ever see one?
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Old 02-25-2014, 01:30 PM   #35
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I've towed everything one can dream of, having hauled boats and TTs, and other trailers for delivery. I have hauled the worst and best of them. My biggest gripe is
1 Tires. They don't hold the road and make sway
2 Grooves in asphalt roads cause sway no matter how ewll a Reese Dual Cam is adjusted, it's not the vehicle but the 6 in wider track the trailer tries to road in
3 Wt and length can be a problem, the Govt built shelters are crappy, overwt, and the axles are too far forward and they pull like a sled
We ahve a 31 ft Arctic Fox TT with Michelin LTs and a Dual Cam and it barely sways except when the wind is fronm the N at 30 K and you pass a Peterblt doing 60 MPH at 65, I can feel it a little then.
4 The weight of the tow vehicle, sway bars on front or rear, and wear all have something to bear with towing
After 4 million miles on the road I learned 1 thing and "You'll have to figure that out according to Kirk Douglas"
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Old 02-25-2014, 01:42 PM   #36
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I will attest to what Cumminsfan stated bout TTs and semis. My 28' will lurch towards the truck as I start to overtake it, then gets pushed away from it when I finish passing. I'm towing with a 2500HD crew cab with 8' bed (167" wheelbase) and my hitch weight is about 18% of trailer weight.
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Old 02-25-2014, 03:47 PM   #37
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for us the differences came down to 3 things

1) a larger master bedroom or we can have enough room to get dressed in private
2) 50 amp electric service, I'm tired of blowing breakers w/30 amp service
3) washer and dryer connections

that said we're on the right side of the cost curve--we have a 10k lbs 35 foot travel trailer.

As far as tow vehicles go I don't think there's much difference in the over 30 foot club. Assuming you want 2 slides, over 30 feet length you will want a 3/4 quarter ton pickup.
JMHO you will also want a diesel.
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Old 02-26-2014, 06:47 AM   #38
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All trailers get pulled by wind/trucks. With a 5er there is no mechanical lever effect to "rotate" the truck so you cannot feel it or for that matter, compensate. With a TT you can both feel it and counter steer if needed. Some people will Over compensate and cause a problem. The key is not to panic and over-react.
The way the Hensley and other fancy hitches work is that they mechanically eliminate the lever effect of the TT on the truck and make it essentially like a solid, straight connection... Sort of oversimplified, but that's the idea. The trailer actually moves slightly forward on the mechanism to "break" the straight line lock in a turn.

Jhawk,
If you are looking for a van, a friend of mine got a great deal on the new Nissan NV3500. He's very happy with it.
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Old 02-26-2014, 08:28 AM   #39
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For me and my setup, I can't agree with most of these:
1. With a rearview camera in both of my TVs, it's a snap. Lower the trailer on the ball, lock it on and plug it in. Takes 30 seconds.
2. Both my SUV and truck have E-sway control and I am able to pass big-rigs at 70mph without a second thought or wiggle.
3. Maybe in the trailer but not even close when you include the storage in the back of the TV for bikes, dogs, etc.
4. Agreed, but they are also as much as 50% taller, so you are hitting trees and dealing with way more aero-drag and cross-wind profile. Also more steps to climb all the time, which is not good for anyone, especially if you have a bum knee or hip.
5. Yup, not to mention the cost of the hitch and the holes in the truck bed of a 5er.
Well put... I am looking at the new Ram 1500 6 cyl diesel as my last TV.
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Old 02-26-2014, 11:57 AM   #40
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Well if you are going to pull aver 30 ft I'd recommend highly, buy a dually and put airbags on it and you'll never look back. OOH! Almost made a funny there. Anyway, I have a Chevy Duramax 2500HD and it's just barely enough for 19,500lb andd I would not tow 22000 with it tho it can. It's too heavy and too much can happen on the 2 lanes. Mine is a 31 ft and I have had 4 miilion miles of trucking experience.
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Old 02-26-2014, 12:59 PM   #41
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Well if you are going to pull aver 30 ft I'd recommend highly, buy a dually and put airbags on it and you'll never look back. OOH! Almost made a funny there. Anyway, I have a Chevy Duramax 2500HD and it's just barely enough for 19,500lb andd I would not tow 22000 with it tho it can. It's too heavy and too much can happen on the 2 lanes. Mine is a 31 ft and I have had 4 miilion miles of trucking experience.
I had a 2500 DMax before I went to my Diesel Pusher class A. I towed a 5w with it that had a hitch weight under 2000# No problem.

I have absolutely no intention of ever going that route again. I am thinking something like a 26' Winnebago ONE towable.. Under 10K# loaded. But then again, your post did not quote mine and you may have been speaking to someone else, in that case disregard.
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Old 02-26-2014, 03:08 PM   #42
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Why I switched to a Travel Trailer

Why I Switched to a Travel Trailer
Posted on July 14, 2013
As most of you who know me I have been RVing and Camping for 50 plus years. During that time I have owed all types of Tents, Trailers, PU Campers, Class A Mtr Homes, Diesel Pushers, and 5th Wheels. For the last 30 years I have had several Motor Homes and 5th wheel Trailers. I have several friends that have asked me why I traded my last 5th wheel trailer for a Travel Trailer. So what follows is my reasons for switching from various RV’s and finally to a Travel Trailer.

Click Here to read the rest Why I Switched to a Travel Trailer | RV Bloggers
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