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Old 05-02-2015, 05:50 AM   #1
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First time towing long distance.

We have planned a trip out of state going to Kentucky from Texas I have all the reservations made and mapped out a route I am going to take.

I plan on about 300-400 miles max a day when driving. I am going to make frequent stops to check things.

I have never pulled a trailer this far before any advice would be appreciated.

I have a 2015 18' StarCraft AR-1 QB and my TV is a 2014 Ram 1500 with a 5.7 liter and I have the WDH setup.
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Old 05-02-2015, 06:08 AM   #2
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Besides performing a walk around at every stop, kicking the tires, looking for things that shouldn't be there like oil or water leaks, and things that should be there and aren't anymore like safety chains or electrical cable and being careful at fueling stations, the only other advice I can give is to have fun in Kentucky! It's a beautiful state.

We leave in 5 days to do the opposite of you. Leave Kentucky for Mustang Island State Park, TX and then onto San Francisco then return. We shoot for 300 miles maximum with a few days between drives. At our age why hurry!
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Old 05-02-2015, 06:41 AM   #3
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1. Each time you stop, do a walk around the trailer. Check the hitch. Look at tires, feel hub for heat. Check awnings-still rolled tight.
2. It doesn't hurt to check tire air pressure in the morning before you get on the road. Carry a compressor with you that can inflate tires to desired pressure.
3. Keep hitch ball and any other hitch items properly lubricated.
4. After a day on the road, take your time when setting up so you don't do something less than smart!
5. It's not a bad idea to make at least some sort of check list to use before you pull out each morning including antenna down, stove vent flap secured, propane on/off as desired, storage compartments locked, stairs in, wife in tow vehicle, all kids accounted for, etc. I've found it really helpful to keep an established routine, and don't get diverted while in the middle of one task i.e. if hitching up, finish hitching up before doing anything else.
6. Don't rush...enjoy each day.
7. Learn from this trip...especially how many miles per day work for you. Now that we're retired, I prefer 350 miles or less per day unless there is a real reason to do more. 400 miles is now what I consider my max. You may be younger (I'm 65) so 400 may be much easier for you.

Have a great trip and enjoy!

P.S. At the end of this month, DW and I will be taking our longest trip ever....4K miles and six weeks on the road....Grand Teton, Yellowstone, Glacier, Little Big Horn, Devil's Tower, South Dakota Badlands. I can't wait to get started!!
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Old 05-02-2015, 07:05 AM   #4
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First long trip towing

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Originally Posted by scbwr View Post
1. Each time you stop, do a walk around the trailer. Check the hitch. Look at tires, feel hub for heat. Check awnings-still rolled tight.
AHHH the awning I had not thought of checking that! I will add it to my list.

THANKS!
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Old 05-02-2015, 02:41 PM   #5
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Particularly with all the switched located near each other on our Grey Wolf, hit the awning switch instead of the slide switch, but caught it ( awning partially out ) before we pulled out.
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Old 05-02-2015, 06:34 PM   #6
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I would recommend purchasing a tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS). It is one of the best upgrades I did for my trailer. I have a monitor in the cab of the pickup and know the pressure and temperature of all 4 tires the entire trip. Also has a blowout/low pressure alarm. You can also get a laser temp gun at most hardware stores to point at the hubs on the trailer when you stop. Quick and easy.

As others have said, always check the chains, wire connection, make sure the batteries are secure etc... I can see my awning while driving so I am constantly keeping an eye on that. Oh, if you stop and get in the trailer be darn sure you fold the steps back up. I forgot once and had to pull off to fold it in.


One other item I purchased with my trailer was the rear view camera. It is more of a luxury than a necessity but I tell you what, if you want to cut back on bickering when setting up and would like a rear view mirror for your trailer while driving I highly recommend it. Mine stays on the entire trip. I can easily tell if the car in the lane next to me is clear so I can move over, I can see my bike rack and spare tire and probably 15 feet behind the trailer (mine is aimed down a bit so I can see the bumper). It is great peace of mind and when I'm backing into a spot I can put it right up next to a tree without getting out 10 times to check my distance.
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Old 05-03-2015, 10:41 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dagmandt View Post
I would recommend purchasing a tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS). It is one of the best upgrades I did for my trailer. I have a monitor in the cab of the pickup and know the pressure and temperature of all 4 tires the entire trip. Also has a blowout/low pressure alarm. You can also get a laser temp gun at most hardware stores to point at the hubs on the trailer when you stop. Quick and easy.

As others have said, always check the chains, wire connection, make sure the batteries are secure etc... I can see my awning while driving so I am constantly keeping an eye on that. Oh, if you stop and get in the trailer be darn sure you fold the steps back up. I forgot once and had to pull off to fold it in.


One other item I purchased with my trailer was the rear view camera. It is more of a luxury than a necessity but I tell you what, if you want to cut back on bickering when setting up and would like a rear view mirror for your trailer while driving I highly recommend it. Mine stays on the entire trip. I can easily tell if the car in the lane next to me is clear so I can move over, I can see my bike rack and spare tire and probably 15 feet behind the trailer (mine is aimed down a bit so I can see the bumper). It is great peace of mind and when I'm backing into a spot I can put it right up next to a tree without getting out 10 times to check my distance.
Dagmandt,

What are you using for a rear view camera? I'm making a list of must have items while still getting ready to purchase new TT.

Thanks
Bill
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Old 05-03-2015, 12:27 PM   #8
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Dagmandt,

What are you using for a rear view camera? I'm making a list of must have items while still getting ready to purchase new TT.

Thanks
Bill
I'm using the Voyager Digital wireless backup system #55960. You can get them at Camping World for $599.99. I've had mine for 2 years and it works flawlessly.
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Old 05-03-2015, 01:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scbwr View Post
1. Each time you stop, do a walk around the trailer. Check the hitch. Look at tires, feel hub for heat. Check awnings-still rolled tight.
2. It doesn't hurt to check tire air pressure in the morning before you get on the road. Carry a compressor with you that can inflate tires to desired pressure.
3. Keep hitch ball and any other hitch items properly lubricated.
4. After a day on the road, take your time when setting up so you don't do something less than smart!
5. It's not a bad idea to make at least some sort of check list to use before you pull out each morning including antenna down, stove vent flap secured, propane on/off as desired, storage compartments locked, stairs in, wife in tow vehicle, all kids accounted for, etc. I've found it really helpful to keep an established routine, and don't get diverted while in the middle of one task i.e. if hitching up, finish hitching up before doing anything else.
6. Don't rush...enjoy each day.
7. Learn from this trip...especially how many miles per day work for you. Now that we're retired, I prefer 350 miles or less per day unless there is a real reason to do more. 400 miles is now what I consider my max. You may be younger (I'm 65) so 400 may be much easier for you.

Have a great trip and enjoy!

P.S. At the end of this month, DW and I will be taking our longest trip ever....4K miles and six weeks on the road....Grand Teton, Yellowstone, Glacier, Little Big Horn, Devil's Tower, South Dakota Badlands. I can't wait to get started!!
I have a Galaxy S5 Android phone. A great app for the phone is called Simple Notepad. One list is called Camping Checklist and another list is called Minnie Winnie Drive Off checklist. You can make as many lists as you need. Many of the items you mentioned above I have on one of the lists. Items can be added, edited, deleated, and sorted. It is a really great tool for camping. Beats the old paper lists that I used to make.
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Old 05-03-2015, 03:25 PM   #10
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May I suggest a laser thermometer. It will help you stay on top of tire temperature and brake temp. I do this in the summer at each stop to make sure I am not overheating my brakes or my tires.
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Old 05-04-2015, 10:08 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dagmandt View Post
I'm using the Voyager Digital wireless backup system #55960. You can get them at Camping World for $599.99. I've had mine for 2 years and it works flawlessly.
I also personally use a Voyager digital wireless camera on our motorhome and trailer. Works great.

We have the Voyager 5" Digital Wireless System in stock for only $579.00
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Old 05-04-2015, 10:50 AM   #12
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Seems you have a new trailer so things should be in excellent shape. Make sure you have a jack and lug wrench on had to fit your tires, I agree with everyone and just make a walk around every time you stop for fuel or rest. Mostly awning secure, tires still look good and check the hitch, lights etc. If everything looks good after the first stop or two I would not worry about making a special stop just to check. Unless of course you think something happened while on the road. But anyone with any experience always walks around every time they stop.
Most of all relax, have fun and don't get in a hurry, Its supposed to be fun.. Oh, and make sure you have a good roadside assistance program just in case.
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Old 05-04-2015, 02:07 PM   #13
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May I suggest a laser thermometer. It will help you stay on top of tire temperature and brake temp. I do this in the summer at each stop to make sure I am not overheating my brakes or my tires.
Thanks for the tip I picked one up last Saturday.
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Old 05-04-2015, 04:34 PM   #14
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You have what I would call the perfect set-up. A very nice comfortable truck and a trailer not too big, not too small. You will stop enough times for fuel to get to check things often. I would be interested how your trip went. Again - I would expect a very comfortable and relaxing journay.

Good luck.
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