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Old 08-21-2016, 05:27 PM   #1
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Have the TV, need the TT

Our 2016 Jeep Cherokee Limited, High-Altitude, 4x4, 3.2, with extended tow has a limit of 4,500 pounds and 450 pounds at the hitch. We plan on installing a WD hitch but haven't decided on which, front plate or braking system yet.

We're downsizing from a newer gasser and really would like your suggestions on which TT's can check-off the greatest number of wish list items listed below AND a reputable dealer you could recommend in Florida:

* 21 ft. w/ empty weight less than 4,050 Lbs. and tongue weight less than 410 lbs.;
* Walk-around, full-sized queen or, really preferably Murphy bed;
* Larger, radius shower, preferably without a curtain;
* No stove, convection microwave is a plus;
* 2x20 lbs. tanks;
* Power front jack;
* DW doesn't care for aluminum outside siding look;
* Slide out preferred but, not absolutely necessary;
* 2 axles and torsion suspension nicer than leaf springs;
* Aluminum rims;
* Bigger TV better;
* Jack-knife sofa OK, but prefer dinette that can convert to bed for grandkid/daughter;
* Ladder to roof than can support 230-250 lb guy;
* Slide-out topper;
* No carpeting;
* Electric awning, preferably w/LED illumination;
* Solar connection;
* More than1entry srep;
* Gas & Electric water heater;
* Need to have black tank flush;
* Separate housing for sewer hose;
* Electronic vs. Crank-up antenna;
* Ducted A/C;
* Electric jacks a big, big plus;
* Porcelain toilet;
* Vacumn sealed fiberglass/aluminum construction preferred;
* External LPG connection;
* LED interior lighting;
* Diamond plate in front lower half;
* Sealed undercarriage;
* Protection under wheel wells;
* 2 Year better than 1 Year bumper to hitch;

We have had to write off many in this size because of weight or hitch requirements. After a lot of searching, on paper we've found:

* Coachmen Freedom Express 192 RBS/Apex Ultra Lite from Florida Outdoors, in Stuart;
* Keystone Passport 195 RB/Passport 199 ML from Palm Beach RV, in West Palm Beach, and;
* Winnebago Micro Minnie 2106FBS/2106DS from Lazydays RV, in Seffner

Target trip is in October to North Carolina to see the foliage turn. Afterwards, from Napa Valley, to North Michigan Peninsula, to Maine, with many stops in-between.

We were once told that RV'ing is all about compromises. At our ages, we don't want to compromise too much. From the bottom of our hearts, a heartfelt THANK YOU!
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Old 08-21-2016, 07:32 PM   #2
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Sorry, but you will push yourself quickly over you tow rating and tongue weight with anything other than a pop up camper once you add batteries, propane tanks, and even bare minimum essentials. Also keep in mind it's not just weight you have to consider but that you're going to be towing a giant sail behind you.
If you were just considering going to local state parks you might find a small travel trailer that could get you by. But doing that much long distance towing you will quickly realize your tow vehicle is not up to task.
Jumping up to a Grand Cherokee with the Hemi or diesel would open up some options, but the regular Cherokee is pretty much limited to a utility trailer, a pop up camper, and maybe a bass boat in terms of towing.
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Old 08-23-2016, 02:57 PM   #3
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I must have missed something. If you get a trailer that weighs 3600 pounds on the sticker, and you add 500 pounds of stuff, you will have a total weight of about 4100 pounds.

If the tongue weight was 350 pounds it should go up to 400 and something.

If the vehicle can tow 4500 pounds and the tongue weight of 450 pounds, why do you say it's only good for maybe towing a bass boat?

The CCC of the Cherokee is 1000 pounds and deducting the tongue weight of say 450, there would be about 550 lbs for the DW, our Shitz-tsu and my 70 lbs above the included 150 for driver so it seems like all is good.

I'm sure I'm missing something and really look forward to learning more before getting a TT.

We purchased the Cherokee as an eventual toad but with its capabilities as equipped we thought it would make an acceptable TV for what we had in mind.

Please help.
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Old 08-23-2016, 03:21 PM   #4
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If you really plan to do a bumper pull TT you would be better off trading the Jeep for a 1/2 ton truck. One with tow gears. Then you can have everything on your list and not overload the TV. Towing will be more fun and safer with a larger TV. The Jeep will tow something I am just not sure what or how well. Perhaps someone that uses one for that can better help.
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Old 08-23-2016, 05:47 PM   #5
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I do like how detailed your list of needs are, a person who has done their research. However, based on that impressive list of needs you are going to need a larger TV to avoid compromising as you stated. On any choice for a TV to pull your future TT, try to keep your overall capacity at 80% of rating or less. TT are infamous for swaying too much when the TV is too small for pulling.


Good luck!
AH
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Old 08-23-2016, 06:10 PM   #6
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Also, never use dry weights. Most trailers are several hundred pounds heavier when delivered than the brochure weights. The average person adds around 1000 pounds of stuff to a trailer so you will be closer to the gross weight than the dry weight.Then you need to figure at least 12% for tongue weight because your vehicle is marginal and 10% is just not stable enough. 15% would be even better but 12 will usually work.You also must add 100 pounds for the WD hitch.

A 4000 pound gross weight trailer will have a tongue weight of 480 pounds at the real world minimum 12% tongue weight. It will be a bit over but would probably work. The real issue is that a vehicle loaded to it's maximum capacity is not fun to drive. Everytime a semi passes you or a gust of wind hits you it will try to push you off the road and you will arrive at your next camp wrung out from the trip. Not very pleasant really.

I would look at Hybrid trailers if you really need the room or a better tow vehicle if you insist on a hard sided trailer.
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Old 08-23-2016, 10:31 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by arhouston View Post
I do like how detailed your list of needs are, a person who has done their research. However, based on that impressive list of needs you are going to need a larger TV to avoid compromising as you stated. On any choice for a TV to pull your future TT, try to keep your overall capacity at 80% of rating or less. TT are infamous for swaying too much when the TV is too small for pulling.


Good luck!
AH
Gotta go with this. ^^^^. Especially the compromise thing. IMO, it sounds like you have a lot of far off destinations to see and a lot of wants on your list of must haves. Will be able to complete your list with a bit larger trailer being towed by a 1/2 truck like a Ram 1500 or F150. Ram 1500 will get you the most bang for your buck.
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Old 08-24-2016, 07:15 AM   #8
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Palms
Your TT should have GVWR (fully loaded weight) of no more than your TV tow rating.
So in reality, you are looking for a dry weight of around 3000lbs and a hitch weight on no more than 400lbs.

So that's a large popup or maybe a small/mid size teardrop trailer. That's all you can realistically do with a Cherokee.

Looking at the list of features you want, you have the wrong car.
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Old 08-24-2016, 07:21 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Palms View Post
If the vehicle can tow 4500 pounds and the tongue weight of 450 pounds, why do you say it's only good for maybe towing a bass boat?

Please help.
Because it's not just about weight of the trailer. It's also about the profile size of a TT being blown around by crosswinds and trucks while connected to a super-short wheelbase tow vehicle that weighs 1000lbs LESS than what it's towing.
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Old 08-24-2016, 10:06 AM   #10
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You might check out the hybrid trailers like Cub. They are around 2900 dry, have hard sides and bathroom/shower. The ends fold out like tent campers. You save some weight with the tents, still get some comfort features. But, definitely look at the cherokee's specs on surface area for the trailer. From what I see on page 597 of the 2016 Cherokee Owners Manual, the maximum surface area is only 39.44 sqft. So, looking at a normal travel trailer, you are usually about 8x8 (or more) or 64sqft. A smaller 8x5 would be 40sqft and more than the max.

Like others said, you will be pushing the engine and transmission to overcome the laws of physics by pulling a full size trailer. I've seen those "hi-lo" campers that are hard sided but drop down to limit surface area and provide storage. Not sure how heavy those are but they are pricey. I hate to be a discouraging voice, but the Cherokee, even with the towing package is not ideal for campers beyond a pop up. You could tow an open trailer with a golf cart or ATV and use every bit of your towing ability but a closed trailer makes all that wind resistance. I suppose if you kept the speeds really low or stuck to back roads you could avoid the wind issues and stick under the weight limits but only you know what is realistic with your driving needs. Best of luck!
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Old 08-24-2016, 11:20 AM   #11
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I would say just save the money on the TT and put it into the MH and use the Cherokee as the toad as planned.
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Old 08-24-2016, 11:54 AM   #12
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Have the TV, need the TT

Last year we pulled a Coleman 192RDS (19' box and 23' overall, 4,000 lbs dry and probably a bit over 5,000 lbs trip ready) with a 2005 Grand Cherokee 5.7 Hemi 4x4 and had very few problems, even out West in the mountains, although it spent a lot of time in 3rd and even 2nd gear climbing some of the hills and mountains. There is no way I would have wanted to pull anything bigger or have pulled that trailer with anything smaller and/or with less than the Hemi we had. And not long after getting back from that trip we traded the GC for a very low mileage 2013 F150 Platinum Screw 4x4 with the 3.5 Ecoboost engine, Max tow package and 3.73 rear end. We did one long trip out West with that and the Coleman and I can assure you the F150 handled the trailer on the grades and all around much better. Not long after that trip we traded that new 2016 Coleman in on a new 2016 Bullet 269RLS (26' box, 31' overall, 5,500 lbs dry and over 6,500 lbs trip ready). We've done one trip out West with this combination and the F150 handles it very well, but I would not want to pull a bigger and/or heavier trailer with my F150. It has plenty of power for it, but as has been discussed above there is much more to be concerned with than just power. Comfortable driving while pulling a TY is one very important aspect. Yep, even though driving this rig is very comfortable I'm still considering moving up to a F250 or 350 class with a diesel.
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Old 08-24-2016, 09:20 PM   #13
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A lot to take in. Gotta face reality. Not what I wanted to hear but it is what I needed to hear.

Looks like it was just a good but not well thought out alternative while we get another MH and use the Cherokee for its intended purpose.

I never cease to be amazed by all the great and helpful advice that one can receive here. Be proud, you may have prevented a regrettable incident. Thank you all very much.
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Old 08-25-2016, 09:34 AM   #14
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Good luck in you travels. There are always camping cabins and yurts in many campgrounds till you get the MH. That Cherokee will make a great towed, just not so good at dragging a TT. Let us all know how it all turns out.
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