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Old 03-09-2015, 08:05 PM   #15
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Setting aside the wisdom of buying a small camper with a family of four, I'll tell you my experience. Wife and I wanted to try camping so bought a 16B camper from Coachmen. It was light at 2400 lbs dry weight and had enough room for she and I and, ostensibly, two other people. The camper is designed to sleep four. Sleep four it would do but that was all. It had a full bath and kitchen as well as two bunk beds in the back and a dinette that converted into a sleeper. It was too small for the wife and I much less my children and their spouses. I learned on one trip that you have to consider what you will do should you be forced to stay inside. The camper was adequate as long as we could spend time outside but, during a storm one day there was four of us inside and we were miserable. Could you camp with your family of four in a small camper? Yes. Just be aware of the limitations. As far as the Coachmen goes, it was a great little camper and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a small lightweight camper.
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Old 03-09-2015, 10:36 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by mavagrand View Post
Setting aside the wisdom of buying a small camper with a family of four, I'll tell you my experience. Wife and I wanted to try camping so bought a 16B camper from Coachmen. It was light at 2400 lbs dry weight and had enough room for she and I and, ostensibly, two other people. The camper is designed to sleep four. Sleep four it would do but that was all. It had a full bath and kitchen as well as two bunk beds in the back and a dinette that converted into a sleeper. It was too small for the wife and I much less my children and their spouses. I learned on one trip that you have to consider what you will do should you be forced to stay inside. The camper was adequate as long as we could spend time outside but, during a storm one day there was four of us inside and we were miserable. Could you camp with your family of four in a small camper? Yes. Just be aware of the limitations. As far as the Coachmen goes, it was a great little camper and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a small lightweight camper.
I hear you. It is a concern of mine that we will be too cramped. That was definitely the case with the tent trailer I rented. It was a small one, Rockwood 1640.
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Old 03-10-2015, 12:49 AM   #17
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Well it looks like it'll be tough to stay at 4,000lbs. Maybe look into the R-pod trailers as well. The trail manors are pretty cool but don't have bunks which is what you may need. That's why I said the R-pod and also you seem to like your truck and why wouldn't you? The Tacoma is a great truck. However I'm guessing you have a short bed double cab and in a midsize truck is a pretty short wheelbase which isn't the best for towing. Another deficit is the 4.0 which would struggle with a standard travel trailer. Ya it did fine with the pop up and utility trailer but there was no frontal area on those trailers. Again another reason why the R-pod may be the better route. Hope this helps. Been down the same road. I hate to say it but a bigger tow vehicle is the way to go in order to get what you're looking for which I assume is a trailer large enough for the family to enjoy and to ease set up/tear down time. Yes a trailer in my opinion should only be used for sleeping and you should be exploring and what not the rest of the time but you will cook and relax in your trailer and its nice not to have everyone squished together
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Old 03-10-2015, 11:18 AM   #18
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Forest River Cherokee Wolf Pup 16bh looks like a contender. It looks nicer with better equipment than the Pacific Coachworks 16bb I was looking at. It has the same floor plan and a little more weight.
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Old 03-11-2015, 02:01 AM   #19
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I was in a similar position as you are many years ago, we had a Nissan Quest mini van, the wife & I with one child at home. We were planning on a trip to Yellow Stone and the wife was getting tired of tent camping while traveling (can't blame her, as she was fine with the tent if we were staying put) so I looked into renting a trailer I could pull with the Nissan Quest. I quickly determined the Quest would pull a tent trailer but not a travel trailer. After looking into renting a tent trailer I realized I could buy a tent trailer, use it for the summer and sell it the next summer and I would be ahead of the game. We used the tent trailer for 9 years, sold it for close to what we paid for it. It was a basic tent trailer, no amenities other then a sink but it served our purpose very well. After nine years of cranking up & down, dealing with getting the door in place I decided I had enough and began looking for a travel trailer. We bought an extra cab 4x4 Ford Ranger with the 6 cylinder engine, more towing capacity but back then, limited on what trailers it could tow. I did not have IRV2 to look for knowledge, I talked to everyone I could who had a trailer, salesman and researched all the information on what my Ranger could and could not pull safely, I repeat, safely. As others have said, I think you would not be happy with the travel trailer your Toyota could safely handle based on what you want & need, you need to look beyond that truck you really like, there are gurus on the towing & tow vehicles site that will explain it much better than I could. I did not want to sell my Ranger, I really liked it and it was paid for, but the truck was not rated to pull a trailer that fit our needs. I ended up buying a 3/4 ton deisel and a 28' travel trailer. The truck will outlast the trailer as your needs/wants of a trailer may change.
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Old 03-11-2015, 03:49 AM   #20
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Forget I said I have a Tacoma. Pretend I have a Ram 4500 with a flat bed and a Cummins.

Does anyone have a suggestions for a lightweight travel trailer?

Any brands I should avoid, specific to ultra lights?
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Old 03-11-2015, 08:55 PM   #21
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Jayco White Hawk 23MBH. It will weigh about 5500 lbs if you don't put too much in it.


You will be overweight but this appears to answer your queston
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Old 03-14-2015, 03:11 PM   #22
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payload

you need to know the payload of your truck. 4 people, things you put in

the bed, the goods you put in the trailer

and finally the tounge weight.. Do

these exceed your trucks payload.??????

it might be a good idea to upgrade your truck, more choices of trailers.

Decide first the trailer you want then match up a truck to pull it.

Jim
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Old 03-16-2015, 11:32 AM   #23
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I am well aware of this. I have upgraded my brakes. I have rotors and calipers from a 06 Tundra. Bigger diameter and thicker rotor and a much larger pad and caliper. So if you think a 05-06 Tundra has adequate brakes for a given size trailer, I should be the same or better with the same brakes on a lighter truck.

I was trying to avoid discussion on my vehicle. Maybe that was wishful thinking on my part. I appreciate your concern but I really needed help locating trailers that meet my needs.

My truck is setup well. Far better than average.
Trying to avoid discussion of your vehicle on these forums is like trying to avoid the water while going in for a swim. That being said, going camping is supposed to be fun, not stressful nor dangerous. As you said, you are completely new to this. Many here have been through all the pitfalls and have very good advise, because we've all been where you are now.

For instance... I sold my first TT to my daughter and son-in-law, and they owned a V-6 Tacoma. The trailer was only 19' long, and 7' wide, and weighed only about 3,500# loaded. They still have the trailer, but pull it with a newer F-150, because of stressful pulling, and breakdowns. His Tacoma wasn't up to the task of pulling a travel trailer. A couple of ruined vacations under their belt and they would give you the same advise that others are trying to give...

Myself... I own a trailer that many say is half-ton towable... but my experiences say otherwise. It weighs about 7,500# ready to go, and I pull it with a 3/4 ton diesel, because my F-150 wasn't up to the task. I will be upgrading my trailer soon, but the truck I have will handle it.

If you want to get into travel trailer camping, in my opinion, you need to first upgrade the truck to be able to pull what you really want. To do otherwise will be far more expensive in the long run.

Best of luck to you... and welcome to RVing...
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Old 03-16-2015, 08:11 PM   #24
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As a suggestion and it might not fill the bill but some of the small to medium size toy haulers are very nice. When not loaded with toys they have quite a lot of room and some can sleep several people quite comfortably. Beds are convertible and many have a drop down queen size bed. Just a thought and you might give them a look just for giggles.
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Old 03-17-2015, 12:19 PM   #25
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Winnebago makes the cool looking red, yellow and I think blue mini-winne trailers that are nice. Those trailers just might fit the bill. These trailers go from 19' to 24' I believe.

Like I said before...if you stay on back roads and off the highway you will not have much trailer sway. Keeping speeds below 60mph will also help a lot.

Good luck
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Old 03-17-2015, 02:59 PM   #26
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I understand your wanting to stay with the Toyo. My first tow truck was a 2011 PreRunner w/the V6. We bought a 2011 R-Vision Onyx 25RB. All up it weighs in at around 4600 pounds, has a queen bed up front, a convertible couch, drop down table, single slide for the kitchen and couch and a comfy/ but tight bath in the back.

After one trip, I upgraded the truck to a 2012 1500 Ram w/5.7L Hemi and got a Hensley Arrow hitch (bought used). I am now on my 3rd construction project with this rig and am happy with it. Looking forward to retiring in a couple of months and getting on the road for some fun...to heck with work.

My PreRunner pulled the trailer just fine. Except: We experienced some serious sway issues when other vehicles passed us. Looking back on it, I think that the Hensley hitch would have tamed the sway issues and we could have kept the Toyota. The Hensley just flat stops all sway. Period.

You can get a reconditioned Hensley Arrow from the factory for about 1/2 the cost of a new hitch. Nice thing about the Hensley set up, bad guys have a real hard time trying to steal your trailer. Whole different way of hitching up.
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Old 05-17-2015, 07:45 PM   #27
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Take a look at Apex, with couch, queen bed down, huge kitchen counter, full corner shower tons of cabinets inside pass thru outside and it comes in at 4160lbs. 25 ft long. And no worry about delam as it is all Azdel.......
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Old 05-17-2015, 08:47 PM   #28
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Don't forget looking at the AR-One and small trailers made by the manufacturer Gulf Stream. They should make a model that would work for you.
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