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Old 07-08-2012, 10:34 PM   #1
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Weight & Balance

I've had the rig for about 3 months. We have been adding stuff to it and generally speaking, I don't think we have add a lot of stuff that we don't need. This weekend we went on our first official cruise. We did have a refit on the first day when we had the Amish Cooling Unit installed. My understanding is that swap out of my old cooling unit with the ACU was a gain of 30 lbs or less. So, we stocked our coach for 4 days on the road for me, DW and 2 GSD. At the end of the trip we refueled the rig. We also had a full tank of fresh water and between 1/3 and 1/2 Black & Grey tanks. That means we had about 88 gal of fresh water including the water in the HWH & between 16 & 25 gal in each holding tank. LP was also nearly full. So, here is what the scales said:

Gross weight - 23120 (24000 GVWR)
Front Axle - 7620 (GAWR 9000)
Rear Axle - 15500 (GAWR 15500)

So, I maxed out my rear and since I did that, I only have 8500 available for the front with give me an additional 880 I can add but all 880 has to be on the front axle.

OK, so as I review my information for my posting I now see I was carrying between 270 and 420 "extra" pounds in my holding tanks. My theory when I set this up was that if I was fully loaded, went to a campground with water & electricity but NO sewer and then refilled my fresh water before leaving.

OK...after seeing these numbers I can now see that I need to be very careful. If I were to have filled my dump tanks and then refilled my fresh water... I would have been between 420 and 690 over my rear axle weight.

So...note to self...don't do that.

Tomorrow I will dump my tanks, refill the gas and go back to get axle weights. That should validate about how much extra weight I was carrying.

Now, all that being said...

I'm thinking that most of my water and dump tank weight is on the rear axle. So, for the sake of argument, let's say that I still had 15,500 on my rear axle. Would that effectively mean I couldn't add any weight to the coach at all. Maybe some of you engineers can validate my general theory/understanding. So, as an example if I were to add 100 lbs to the forward most basement location just behind my from wheels. Wouldn't that still add some weight to the rear? Now, take that 100 lbs and move it to a basement location 1/2 way between the from and rear wheels, wouldn't that add 50 to each axle?
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Old 07-08-2012, 11:51 PM   #2
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Sorry I do not have your answer:

I have a hunch that along with me many will be watching this thread. You pose a vexing question for many. My situation is exactly the same.
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Old 07-09-2012, 12:04 AM   #3
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Seems that if you get more weight on the front wheels, it may actually reduce weight on the rear if already at max via the fulcrum effect. The trouble is that you may be challenged to have that weight far forward. In my case I'm glad that my water tank is just behind the cab as is my genset instead of sitting behind the rear axle. Loading hasn't been a problem as checked on the scales. Newer rigs seem to leave the factory already near the max in some cases.
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Old 07-09-2012, 05:44 AM   #4
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Appears that going to and from a campground with facilities (your para. 3) that fresh water is full. Why? Most of us will haul 10-15 gal. of that 8lb per gal. stuff just for an emergency thus eliminating 6 to 700 lbs. of the "problem". In other industries that's known as "ferrying fuel" and is a serious no-no.
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Old 07-09-2012, 05:50 AM   #5
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You are correct.

Sometimes it's not possible to move weight forward as there is no space above the front axle or in front of the front axle. It's excess capacity that can't be used.


Quote:
Originally Posted by athuddriver View Post
I've had the rig for about 3 months. We have been adding stuff to it and generally speaking, I don't think we have add a lot of stuff that we don't need. This weekend we went on our first official cruise. We did have a refit on the first day when we had the Amish Cooling Unit installed. My understanding is that swap out of my old cooling unit with the ACU was a gain of 30 lbs or less. So, we stocked our coach for 4 days on the road for me, DW and 2 GSD. At the end of the trip we refueled the rig. We also had a full tank of fresh water and between 1/3 and 1/2 Black & Grey tanks. That means we had about 88 gal of fresh water including the water in the HWH & between 16 & 25 gal in each holding tank. LP was also nearly full. So, here is what the scales said:

Gross weight - 23120 (24000 GVWR)
Front Axle - 7620 (GAWR 9000)
Rear Axle - 15500 (GAWR 15500)

So, I maxed out my rear and since I did that, I only have 8500 available for the front with give me an additional 880 I can add but all 880 has to be on the front axle.

OK, so as I review my information for my posting I now see I was carrying between 270 and 420 "extra" pounds in my holding tanks. My theory when I set this up was that if I was fully loaded, went to a campground with water & electricity but NO sewer and then refilled my fresh water before leaving.

OK...after seeing these numbers I can now see that I need to be very careful. If I were to have filled my dump tanks and then refilled my fresh water... I would have been between 420 and 690 over my rear axle weight.

So...note to self...don't do that.

Tomorrow I will dump my tanks, refill the gas and go back to get axle weights. That should validate about how much extra weight I was carrying.

Now, all that being said...

I'm thinking that most of my water and dump tank weight is on the rear axle. So, for the sake of argument, let's say that I still had 15,500 on my rear axle. Would that effectively mean I couldn't add any weight to the coach at all. Maybe some of you engineers can validate my general theory/understanding. So, as an example if I were to add 100 lbs to the forward most basement location just behind my from wheels. Wouldn't that still add some weight to the rear? Now, take that 100 lbs and move it to a basement location 1/2 way between the from and rear wheels, wouldn't that add 50 to each axle?
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Old 07-09-2012, 06:16 AM   #6
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Don... Your wheels are not going to fall off and the weight popo are not going to pull your Walmart parking permit if you are several hundred L Bs over weight. just make sure your tires are aired up to max and maybe 5 lbs more. The only time you are going to have a fulcrum effect is if the weight is added in front of the front wheels.
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Old 07-09-2012, 06:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H. Miller View Post
Appears that going to and from a campground with facilities (your para. 3) that fresh water is full. Why? Most of us will haul 10-15 gal. of that 8lb per gal. stuff just for an emergency thus eliminating 6 to 700 lbs. of the "problem". In other industries that's known as "ferrying fuel" and is a serious no-no.
Great point my friend. Partly filling the fresh water is to out of my thinking process. Perhaps I'm still thinking "ideal" with a part time mentality. How did I get there? Well, I still think in those terms PLUS...the water in my home base CG is extremely hard. I know I am using it for showers, flushing, and such but refuse to drink it. I won't even attempt to use my washer/dryer with it. So, when I go home I fill my fresh water tank with my home water "just in case". LOL

Perhaps fearing all CGs are just as bad and thus I want a "clean water" back up is playing into this. I certainly am not wanting to "ferry" that much water and to be honest, in last weekends first, true cruise...YEP...we ferried a lot of unused water.

This whole issue could be part and parcel of retraining the mind from thinking in terms more associated with a S&B home to realistic solutions to the RV life style.
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Old 07-09-2012, 06:36 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderso View Post
Seems that if you get more weight on the front wheels, it may actually reduce weight on the rear if already at max via the fulcrum effect. The trouble is that you may be challenged to have that weight far forward. ...
Unfortunately, I THINK...the only fulcrum effect I might see would be by adding weight behind my rear wheels taking weight off of the front. LOL Wrong way. I'm still thinking that any weight between the wheels will generally average out to be 50/50 as a whole.
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Old 07-09-2012, 06:42 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunner View Post
Don... Your wheels are not going to fall off and the weight popo are not going to pull your Walmart parking permit if you are several hundred L Bs over weight. just make sure your tires are aired up to max and maybe 5 lbs more. The only time you are going to have a fulcrum effect is if the weight is added in front of the front wheels.
THEY WON'T FALL OFF? WHEW!

I think the sidebar issue I am looking at is trying to stay reasonably close. I'm not worried if I pop over weight a couple hundred pounds provided I don't develop some form of mission creep where I don't have a clue about just how much more over weight I might get when I add dis-n-dat.

As previously mentioned, I do want to make sure I am not carrying extra weight "just because". DW and I are just learning some more tips-n-tricks to happy RVing.

TANX!
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Old 07-09-2012, 06:45 AM   #10
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I always carry some water when traveling and then will fill the fersh tank when I get there.. My rational is two fold. First what happen if someone breaks a water line in my area. They have to shut down the water while it is being repaired. ( Has only happened once in 25 years ) Most impostantly I run the water pump as well as campground water in low pressure campgrounds. Give a better shower and washing of dishes etc. If I am there for a week then I fill it up. It will be near empty when we leave. In my case I am not near my maximum weight. Fully packed and towing and I still have 1,500 pounds to spare! I wish my own diet was as good as the rigs.
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Old 07-09-2012, 06:53 AM   #11
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Don, when I bought my MH, it was camp ready, just add fuel, food and personal items. Some of the stuff in the basement was new and in sealed boxes, including patio mat, tie downs, BBQ grill, etc. I am way under weight, but still took out the stuff, however how nice, to save weight to improve performance and increase MPG. I moved the heavy stuff as far up front as I could to smooth out the ride. You'll soon find out which stuff you can RV without. Enjoy.
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Old 07-09-2012, 01:34 PM   #12
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Quote:
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I always carry some water when traveling and then will fill the fresh tank when I get there.. My rational is two fold. First what happen if someone breaks a water line in my area. ... I wish my own diet was as good as the rigs.
Thanks Dan for those idea. I think in the beginning it is easy to get caught up with being fully self contained and hauling a lot of unneeded stuff including all the water (fresh and otherwise) you thing you want/need. I would suppose the only time it would be "wise" to haul full tanks would be if we were going through large expanses of open territory and having the extra water might be a safety/survival issue in case of break down. I might think that a serious boondocking trip might change that but I only guess on that for now. Given that our current plans are CG to CG in the more populated areas I can easily think 1/2 tank fresh water as a starting point.

Best wishes on your own diet. I had weight loss surgery Oct, 2011 and am down 140 lbs. It was amazing how well I handled last weekend's heat.
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Old 07-09-2012, 01:41 PM   #13
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Quote:
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Don, when I bought my MH, it was camp ready, just add fuel, food and personal items. ... Enjoy.
We had to do a little more than that but nothing out of the ordinary. Is I mentioned with Dan, I think it is part of the learning curve on what is really needed without short changing comfort/convenience. I've read some folks always carry full fresh water "just in case" and we just don't have the experience to understand yet the real life practices of managing RV storage. While we have been pretty good at not adding "stuff", we have kept the fresh water tank full partially because we don't like the water in our home CG.

I think we will start with just 1/2 tank of fresh water and follow Dan's suggestion about running the water pump to improve coach water pressure. Next will be learning how to efficiently hit dump sites while enroute. LOL I'm figuring that carrying 1/2 tank of grey water is a huge waste (pardon the pun) of horse power.

TANX AGAIN!
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Old 07-09-2012, 02:01 PM   #14
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I like myself. I always fill my fresh tank with soft water from home.
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