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Old 04-12-2014, 09:00 PM   #1
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Bought a truck, TT next...?

Hi all. It's been a while since I posted I think, but I've been reading off and on.

Bought 2014 Ram 1500 with the tow package set up. It states tow capacity is 10,050lbs.

Now I need to find a TT that fits our lifestyle. Most of the ones we are looking at are around 33' long and come in around 7,000lbs.

What do I need to know?

Thanks!
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Old 04-12-2014, 09:10 PM   #2
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First you need to evaluate the actual towing capacity of the truck once loaded for travel. The 10,050# rating is based on a base model truck, no cargo, no accessories, not hitch and no passengers....just a 150# driver.

In the absence of a real weight on the truck, use 80% of the 10,050# rating or roughly 8000# as a loaded trailer weight as a maximum...not dry weight.

My personal opinion is that a 1/2 ton truck should be limited to about a 28' trailer and a maximum of about 7000# for trailer. A 33' trailer is too long to tow comfortabley with a 1/2 ton truck. Look at the trailers GVWR (maximum loaded weight) and forget the dry weight numbers.

Good luck shopping and welcome to iRV2.

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Old 04-12-2014, 09:46 PM   #3
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So, you got the 3.92 diff , hemi, 8 speed trans? You will probably be OK <30 feet and <6500 pounds. Depending on how much you take with you and where you go. Flat land VS mountains. BTW, WELCOME! Take your time looking and believe nothing the salesman says. Go on the Mfg suits for info and look at RV trader for some prices, never pay MSRP and you can steal used ones. Inspect and test everything. Get some experienced help setting up the hitch and brakes. have fun.
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Old 04-13-2014, 12:22 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Highway 4x4 View Post
So, you got the 3.92 diff , hemi, 8 speed trans? You will probably be OK <30 feet and <6500 pounds. Depending on how much you take with you and where you go. Flat land VS mountains. BTW, WELCOME! Take your time looking and believe nothing the salesman says. Go on the Mfg suits for info and look at RV trader for some prices, never pay MSRP and you can steal used ones. Inspect and test everything. Get some experienced help setting up the hitch and brakes. have fun.
That is correct! 2014 Big Horn.

Does a good weight distribution hitch help add to the towable weight at all? I'm not looking to go over 7500 lbs but if your saying 6500 lbs is where I should be.... Yikes!

Luckily I didn't buy my TT yet, lol.
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Old 04-13-2014, 01:16 AM   #5
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It's just my opinion about what you (me) would be comfortable towing with that truck. My son has that exact truck and it is very capable power wise with that trans but it still is a 1500. Remember that a 6500 empty trailer, by the time you add people, gear, food, and whatever will be closer to 8000. That might be just fine for Kansas but when you hit Colorado and Utah, those long grades that are 4000 feet at the bottom and go up from there will be less fun. That hemi engine has a feature that de-fueles it when you let off the gas so it should have some good engine braking. It does about 2000 rpms at 70 in 8th so you won't be needing that gear much while towing. Yes, you will need a WDH with sway control as the coils do go down with weight. Did you get the air suspension option? Are you going to put a cover on the bed? Did you get the crew or quad cab? 5'7" bed or 6'4"?
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Old 04-13-2014, 01:23 AM   #6
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I did not get the air suspension, I wish I did. It was VERY difficult funding the set up I wanted here in the Pittsburgh area. I got the crew cab with the 5'7" box. I do plan on getting a truxedo tonneau cover. (I don't actually have it yet. The dealer had to go to Ohio. Hopefully Monday).
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Old 04-13-2014, 03:11 PM   #7
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A 7K pound empty travel trailer will probably end up being around 8K pounds loaded up. You're at the upper end of what a 1/2 ton truck will comfortably carry, but it really depends on your particular truck and how far you plan on traveling.

Disregard the 10K pound tow rating - almost meaningless. What's your payload? There's a sticker in your driver door jamb that says 'weight of passengers and cargo should not exceed ___' That's the real number you need to work against. The hitch weight of your TT plus cargo in your truck, including passengers, needs to be under this number.

As for how much you can push the limits of your truck, it really depends on how far you plan on traveling. IMO you can push it more if you're going to use it a few times a year and only drive an hour away; if you plan on doing cross country trips, you really want to have plenty of towing capacity in reserve. Otherwise it makes for a pretty stressful driving experience.
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Old 04-13-2014, 03:21 PM   #8
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Thanks. I will make sure I do all my calculations before I buy a TT.

Most of our trips will be local weekend get aways 1-2 hours drive. I think at least once a year we will go from Pittsburgh to Myrtle beach.
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Old 04-13-2014, 05:53 PM   #9
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I just did the trip on 70/76 across to 81.
Nice country with plenty of hills. Not to long but many.
You will have to keep the RPM up with any gas truck and trailer. I would guess around 7000 lbs might work ok. But seen much more with careful driving.
Happy trails
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Old 04-13-2014, 06:18 PM   #10
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What is the payload capacity for your truck?

Another often suggested step before buying a trailer is loading the truck with a full tank of gas and the family then drive to the nearest scale to weight the whole truck and each axle separately. You should be able to tow a trailer with a 500lbs dry tongue and 7000gvwr (loaded). That will put you in the 26-28' range which is usually queen bed up front and bucks in the back. Slides add a lot of weight so unless you spend a lot of time indoors when camping you'll be able to get a longer trailer for the same weight if it doesn't have a slide.


The oem tow rating is based on a 165lb driver as the sole occupant and a low profile low tongue weight trailer, such as a boat trailer.
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Old 04-18-2014, 04:09 PM   #11
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Quote:
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A 7K pound empty travel trailer will probably end up being around 8K pounds loaded up. You're at the upper end of what a 1/2 ton truck will comfortably carry, but it really depends on your particular truck and how far you plan on traveling.

Disregard the 10K pound tow rating - almost meaningless. What's your payload? There's a sticker in your driver door jamb that says 'weight of passengers and cargo should not exceed ___' That's the real number you need to work against. The hitch weight of your TT plus cargo in your truck, including passengers, needs to be under this number.

As for how much you can push the limits of your truck, it really depends on how far you plan on traveling. IMO you can push it more if you're going to use it a few times a year and only drive an hour away; if you plan on doing cross country trips, you really want to have plenty of towing capacity in reserve. Otherwise it makes for a pretty stressful driving experience.
That number is 1236lbs? So after me and my family that leaves me about 750lbs...
That's not counting anything additional.

We recently found a nice 5th wheel. Light weight. 7900lbs. Is a 5th wheel easier to travel with?
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Old 04-18-2014, 06:16 PM   #12
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You need to step back and take a look at the numbers.
The 10,500 is meaningless. What's important is the payload number of 1236lbs. Which is extremely low when thinking of towing. I see you've calculated your passenger weights in and that's good.
So starting with 750lbs you need to look at that as the max tongue weight you can carry. A dry weight TT around 4000lbs that will be 5000lbs when loaded for camping will give you a tongue weight in the 500-750lb range.
You have fallen victim to the 1/2 ton payload dilemma. You can now see that the 10,500lb tow rating is a dream.

As far as 5th wheels go. Your truck is improperly equipped to haul one. There's only a few configuration between the big 3 trucks that actually have enough payload capacity to haul a 5th wheel. They don't even make a 5th wheel with a 750lb dry pin weight.
Another thing to consider is that 95% of all weights you read on the internet or in brochures are lower than the delivered TT. The delivered TT will have a sticker from the factory that lists the UVW. That's the number you want to be close to 4000lbs.
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Old 04-18-2014, 06:43 PM   #13
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I'll have to double check that number...I thought the RAM had a pay load of 1900+ lbs.

The website claims 1417, any reason why the number in the door would be 1296 when it is equipped exactly how it is on line. I know that's only 100+ lbs difference but?

So by the calculations I can not put a hitch in my bed and tow a Rockwood or flagstaff 5th wheel safely?

Ugh...
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Old 04-18-2014, 07:06 PM   #14
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Also...isn't that what a good WDH is supposed to help out with? I'm new but is that accurate?
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