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Old 11-18-2014, 12:48 PM   #43
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Everyone loves their trailer when they first get it. I'm coming up on 3 years of ownership and I still love mine, in spite of minor problems. It's never been back to the dealer. Any problem has been minor, and I've been able to take care of it. I used it for a period of 8 weeks, for it's maiden voyage, because right after I bought it, my job changed. We use it about 5 times a year. As I've said before... I guess it was built on Wednesday...

I'll be upgrading soon, but primarily because I want a bit more room, with opposing slides in the living area. I like the 80" queen bed in my unit, and it came with a good mattress, to which we added 4" of memory foam. My 2 dislikes are the Tor-flex axles make it sit too low, and the electric stabilizer jacks don't stabilize much of anything. The Tor-flex axles do tow nice. There is a lift kit I could put on it, but I haven't yet.

Best of luck with your search...
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Old 11-25-2014, 11:06 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by BassinDmax View Post
I haven't really been able to find any type of comparison sites similar to Consumer Reports for travel trailers. So Iíve decided to pose the question to you all.

In the market for our 1st travel trailer and looking for one in the 24í range with slide out. Itís just me, the wife and our Rottie. We like the floor plans with the dinette or couch slide out and the walk around bed. Several manufacturers have models like this, which brings the decision down to the manufacturer.

So how do you decide which one to buy? What are the most dependable manufactures and are there any you would stay away from? I know this question is probably treading on dangerous waters since owners have strong feelings about their TTís, but your opinions will help out a newbie.
Here is where to start: How much money do you want/have to spend and how much tow vehicle do you have. Newer rigs that use 100% aluminum framing are lighter than older rigs with all wood framing, but they are more expensive. I can tow my 31' with a PROPERLY equipped F150.

Once you know what you can tow, then look at floor plans (layout) and features. Then ask specific questions on this forum. My Forest River is well constructed. Jayco also makes good units. But you need to know the temperature range the unit is rated for. Mine is rated down to zero degrees and has two A/C units. I have electrically heated tanks (two switches), and enclosed underbelly. If all you want to do is weekend at the beach, you can do fine with exposed plumbing.

Make lists and cross off as you learn.
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Old 11-26-2014, 07:16 AM   #45
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We had a TT with the Tor-Flex axles and I really liked them. You have independent suspension. There are no leaf springs, shackles, bushings etc. What I didn't like was the fact that there were no shocks. I was going to add shocks but the DW decided that we should look at MH's instead.

I put shocks on our first TT and it made a big difference in the ride. With over 40 years teaching and working with this stuff I still can't accept the fact that most TT manufacturers still don't believe that they need to put functioning shocks on their TT's. I think it's just plane stupid but what do I know??? I keep asking myself this question. Name me one other frame with wheels traveling down our highways that does not have shocks besides boat trailers.

In regards to your ground clearance. I have a friend who's axles are on top of the springs. That puts his unit closer to the ground. They can be place under the axle just as easily and that raises your ground clearance probably 3-4 inches. Since I don't have that TT anymore I don't know if anything can easily be done to the Tor-Flex set up to raise the ground clearance.

If I am correct in my thinking I believe it's also possible to either adjust the TF axles to raise the unit or getting different axles that are set up and adjusted to make it higher. Do some research into the TF axles. I seem to recall this. The pivoting spring steel axles (torsion bars) are placed in the square tubing kind of like a ratchet handle. In other words. The pivot part in reference to the anchored part can be located say at 3-PM or at 4-PM or at 5-PM. The closer to 5-PM means the unit would set higher. Also I think those axles are not over $300 each. So for less that $600-$800 you could raise your unit and have new axles maybe even a little heavier axle for weight carrying capacity.

Just some things to think about.

TeJay
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Old 11-26-2014, 08:59 AM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TeJay View Post
We had a TT with the Tor-Flex axles and I really liked them. You have independent suspension. There are no leaf springs, shackles, bushings etc. What I didn't like was the fact that there were no shocks. I was going to add shocks but the DW decided that we should look at MH's instead.

I put shocks on our first TT and it made a big difference in the ride. With over 40 years teaching and working with this stuff I still can't accept the fact that most TT manufacturers still don't believe that they need to put functioning shocks on their TT's. I think it's just plane stupid but what do I know??? I keep asking myself this question. Name me one other frame with wheels traveling down our highways that does not have shocks besides boat trailers.

In regards to your ground clearance. I have a friend who's axles are on top of the springs. That puts his unit closer to the ground. They can be place under the axle just as easily and that raises your ground clearance probably 3-4 inches. Since I don't have that TT anymore I don't know if anything can easily be done to the Tor-Flex set up to raise the ground clearance.

If I am correct in my thinking I believe it's also possible to either adjust the TF axles to raise the unit or getting different axles that are set up and adjusted to make it higher. Do some research into the TF axles. I seem to recall this. The pivoting spring steel axles (torsion bars) are placed in the square tubing kind of like a ratchet handle. In other words. The pivot part in reference to the anchored part can be located say at 3-PM or at 4-PM or at 5-PM. The closer to 5-PM means the unit would set higher. Also I think those axles are not over $300 each. So for less that $600-$800 you could raise your unit and have new axles maybe even a little heavier axle for weight carrying capacity.

Just some things to think about.

TeJay
We had torsion axles on our last trailer, and while the ride and mechanical simplicity was great, the trailer was very low to the ground which made it easy to get in and out of, but the tail end dragged going up service station entrances, etc. The do sell "lift kits" which consist of a spacer, or you could have a local shop make something similar up. Amazon.com: Casita (Dexter Torflex #10) Torsion Axle Lift Kit: Sports & Outdoors
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Old 11-27-2014, 02:37 PM   #47
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I appreciate very much everyone's time for making their contribution in answering newbie questions.

Does anyone have direct handling experience (neg/pos) with the torsion vs. wide-track (43" on-center for/aft) axle? My focus is reducing (perhaps over engineering/thinking in an abundance of caution) the potential 30' TT sway.

My TV is a 2015 Chevy 3500 Express passenger Duramax 135" wheelbase 9600 GVWR/10K towing rating, "E" rating tires. I am looking at a Center-line WD/4 point sway. I found two 30' TT's; one with Torsion and one with wide track both 8600 GVWR. Your answer will assist in my decision. Comments on the TV and tow hitch are welcome. I will be interested in TT shock mounting options comments as well.

Of course this question concern is in addition to all of the other obvious proper setup/precautions for reduced sway that most of us know about and need not comment if you wish for this inquiry unless you have the time/interest to comment, i.e, TV wheelbase, tires and all of the various load ratings concerns, and the same for the TT; read all about it, got It :-).

Just interested now for the torsion vs. wide-track experience you may have.

Thank you in advance of your reply.
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Old 11-28-2014, 10:05 AM   #48
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Onstar20,

Our last TT by Forest City was a wide track and it had the Tor-Flex suspension. Like I said earlier I did like the torsion axles.

I may have listed my background some if not I do know a little about suspensions. I believe that most sway would be controlled or not be as big of an issue if the TT manufacturers really took the time to install working shock absorbers. Here's why I think that.

Once a TT begins to sway a lot of things start happening and there's absolutely nothing there to dampen or absorb that swaying motion. I am not a suspension engineer but God decided to give me a lot of common sense. I can't get into all of the dynamics involved between the tow vehicle (TV) and the hitch and the TT suspension but this is just CS.

Once the TT leans to a side (no matter what made it lean) the weight is shifted and the suspension is compressed. The other side raises up and that suspension is unloaded. The compressed suspension then rebounds which compresses the opposite side which then continues the motion back and forth, and back and forth.

Because of the speed, shifting of the weight it tends to perpetuate itself because there is nothing there to dampen the motion of the suspension.

Common sense tells me if the motion of the suspension is dampened/controlled then the sway becomes much less of an issue.

I also very much like the idea of the independent movement of the wheels. Any bump or dip encountered by one wheel only effects that one wheel. With a straight axle if one wheel is raised it tends to throw the other wheel to the opposite side.

I've designed shock mounts for a non TF axle once. I was going to design plates for the Tor-Flex (TF) to mount shocks but we traded it and got a MH. If you do decide to buy a TF axle set up send me some pictures and I'll tell you how I'd set it up for shocks. I vagely remember how i thought i was going to do it but I'd need another look. I can also assist you in trying to find some shocks that would work.

Once you've got the trailer on the road with shocks you can evaluate the ride and handling maybe then you can decide if or how much extra sway control you might need.

TeJay
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Old 11-30-2014, 12:58 PM   #49
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Radiance RBDS 22ft Dinette slide, walkaround bed, big bathroom, outside kitchen. Just the two of us and our mutt! It's a nice adult trailer.
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Old 01-18-2015, 09:40 PM   #50
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I echoed TeJay's comments about the dealer. We have a local dealer that had the products I was looking to buy but 2 out of three of the dealers had atrocious records on service. I was very uncomfortable doing business with them. on balance there is a third dealer which has an outstanding record on service and customer satisfaction. They only had one trailer that was a little pricier than I wanted and fit my needs. I bought. It and they gave me a good deal. The first trip out, The trailer had several warranty issues. The dealer was on the way home and fixed all of the issues at no additional cost, while I waited. They get a AAA rating in my book.
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Old 03-24-2015, 02:52 PM   #51
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Trailer shopping

Really curious to know which travel trailer you own that met all these items on your checklist. Currently shopping...
Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Onstar20 View Post
For those of you interested, here is your checklist for what to look for: hard fiberglass sides, aluminum frame construction with brick foam insulation all 6 sides, ducted AC with option for 15K unit, lots of 110v receptacles in usable locations, finished basement lighted storage, Torflex axles, high chassis GVWR with low dry weight, 15" wheels with bearing buddies, power awning & stabilizers, front fiberglass cap with a floor plan/storage that makes the wife happy, maximized lay out to enable the shortest hitch to bumper length. I have found the one with all of the above requirements plus it has THREE slides. If you are interested post me a reply. :-)
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Old 03-29-2015, 07:23 PM   #52
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Really curious to know which travel trailer you own that met all these items on your checklist. Currently shopping...
Thanks!
My final TT choice changed due to Chevy not able full-fill my order for a 2015 3500 Duramax van so I went with a 2014 Ford E350 Super Duty 5.4l, 4x4 QuadVan with max tow of 7400 lbs. After much research I went with a Heartland Wilderness 2750RL 7500 GVWR, 13500 CGWR: key factors were weight 5500 lbs, spread axles, 30' bumper to hitch ball. Put the fold out couch in the van and replaced with a storage cabinet/counter for a 40" LCD. After weighing everything loaded in the van/TT I figure I have ~1000 pound reserve. Heartland makes a 8600 GVWR version I would have gone with if Chevy could have delivered on the Duramax. Just returned from a round trip 1K mile maiden voyage to Tombstone and pulled/power was perfect at 55 mph. Had a TT tire go flat 15 mins from home had a TPM system so I watched the air go down as the alarm sounded and pulled over with the flat tire bead still in the rim; made me think about upgrading to load range d or e tires and carry two spares. Also looking to have a 5.4l tuner and free flow muffler installed. This rig is a perfect match coupled with a Centerline hitch. Hope this helps in your search. Welcome feedback from anyone on this set up.
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Old 04-01-2015, 07:39 PM   #53
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Wife and I just finished first trip with our Palomino Canyon Cat 25rkc. 25 ft trailer with a couch slide and a walk around bed. Newbies so don't have much to compare it to, but we are both happy with the trailer. Have not found any problems yet!
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Old 04-02-2015, 06:53 AM   #54
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You have to put the Winnebago Towables Minnie on your short list. We looked at many of the same trailers you have listed and had it narrowed down to the Coleman and a few others. Then we found the Winnebagos and never really had a second thought.
Quality, finish, Floorplan options, available outdoor kitchen, and the color options made our decision easy. Especially in the size range you are considering.
After 8 months of searching and hundreds of miles driven to dealers and shows, I am extremely happy with our rig.
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