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Old 04-18-2012, 06:44 PM   #1
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Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR)

Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR)

"This is the maximum safe weight of your combined vehicle and trailer. This weight includes all people, luggage, and other material. If your combined towing setup exceeds this weight, your vehicle's engine, transmission, brakes, and so on will be stressed beyond their design limits."

Now with this being said, how many who tow, have weighed their setup and abided by it? Of those who know or think they might be over the limit, do you know by how much? How many have had any real problems, such as things breaking, falling off, burning up...etc?

Just doing a little survey here, while trying to decide whether or not we should pull our Jeep Wrangler JKU. According to my calculations, we'll be about 2000 lbs over with everything loaded to the hilt. I'm not concerned so much with the flatlands, but mountains could be another story, even with brakes on the toad.

Any and all feedback concerning this issue is most welcome.
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Old 04-18-2012, 07:04 PM   #2
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I'd get rid of the Wrangler...2,000 is a lot of weight.
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Old 04-18-2012, 07:14 PM   #3
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I personally ALWAYS run well below the limits. I believe anyone who is over is being negligent and possibly bordering on criminal. We are dealing with people's lives out there people, please for everyone's sake get it together.
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Old 04-18-2012, 07:19 PM   #4
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We're well below GCVWR. Our toad is about 3200 lbs, and we're under GVWR fully loaded as well.

I would not recommend pulling a toad which when your coach is fully loaded, you exceed your GCVWR. You may have frame issues, hitch issues, brake issues....
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Old 04-18-2012, 09:28 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KBolin View Post
I personally ALWAYS run well below the limits. I believe anyone who is over is being negligent and possibly bordering on criminal. We are dealing with people's lives out there people, please for everyone's sake get it together.
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Originally Posted by Pusherman View Post
I would not recommend pulling a toad which when your coach is fully loaded, you exceed your GCVWR. You may have frame issues, hitch issues, brake issues....
^^ Yeah, that.

We had our fully loaded rig 4-corner weighed and made all our calculations for load balancing, tire pressures, etc. We are also well below our maximum GCWR. It was important to us to abide by the manufacturer's specifications; we take safety very seriously.
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Old 04-18-2012, 09:40 PM   #6
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Our GVWR is 34,600#'s and our GCVWR is 44,600. With the Ody in tow four down we're about 36,500. If I tow with the dolly it adds 650#'s to that. So we're way under our ratings. And I intend to keep it that way by having my wife leave her rock collection at home!
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Old 04-19-2012, 07:22 AM   #7
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Our coach/towd is weighed every spring (four corners) fully loaded for our summer trip. We would not dream of towing overweight. I often wonder about questions like the OP's. My guess is that their decision to tow overweight is already made and they are just looking for some kind of dispensation. JMO.
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Old 04-19-2012, 01:54 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by KBolin View Post
I personally ALWAYS run well below the limits. I believe anyone who is over is being negligent and possibly bordering on criminal. We are dealing with people's lives out there people, please for everyone's sake get it together.
Well, I certainly wouldn't want to make the 10 most wanted list here and I know that I asked for this, but was hoping to hear more from an engineering standpoint. Since a safety concern has been presented, I would like it explained scientifically so that I may fully understand it.
I am a safety first, type person which is one reason I never drive my Motel at speed limit, even without a toad. When it comes to this sort of thing, I like looking at the engineering of the whole thing and if there's any manufacture out there who hasn't built in more than a 10% factor, then it must have came from the back country of China. I don't assume this though, and look at the whole rig for any possible weak points. Finally, I don't think they have real structural engineers working for most of these coach builders doing a lot of math and just strike a low number that keeps them safe from any liability. If this was not the case, then we'd be hearing of nothing but mayhem on a daily basis, cuz you can bet the majority aren't posting or even a member of any forum.
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Old 04-19-2012, 02:11 PM   #9
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I prefer to assume that the chassis builders (not the coach builder) who engineer and calculate these numbers know a lot more than me about it's capabilities and safety margins. I'll go by their recommendations and not risk my or other's lives.

Towing, I run about 2500# under GCVW.
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Old 04-19-2012, 08:24 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jackrobinryan View Post
I prefer to assume that the chassis builders (not the coach builder) who engineer and calculate these numbers know a lot more than me about it's capabilities and safety margins. I'll go by their recommendations and not risk my or other's lives.

Towing, I run about 2500# under GCVW.
That would be nice except that the house builders chop up the chassis and modify it. Stretching the wheel base in itself will raise the towing weight capabilities. How much any vehicle can tow involves many factors and wheel base is one of them.
I'm still baffled by how safety is involved here, but I'm sure someone out there can explain it to me in language I can understand. Now, not having brakes on a toad, as many do not, would we the first thing I'd not only question, but could fully explain the ramifications of.
I can see possible overheating of the engine or transmission maybe, but other than that, I can't really find anything to warrant against it. Also the people I know who ought to be working for these builders and seem to know every aspect of these rigs, can't find a good reason either. If I just didn't care, or thought there was nothing more to learn from anyone, I'd just do it, rather than post here, seeking more information.
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Old 04-19-2012, 11:21 PM   #11
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I'm still baffled by how safety is involved here, but I'm sure someone out there can explain it to me in language I can understand.
This is from our Fleetwood Owner's Manual. (Not anything "scientific", but common sense.)

Do not exceed Maximum Tongue Weight
as listed on the Federal Certification Tag
or on the tag on the trailer hitch. Heavier
tongue weights can change your vehicle’s
handling and response
, can cause a vehicle
to crash, and will restrict your coverage
under the Ownercare Warranty.


Do not tow anything weighing more than the
GTWlisted on the Federal Certification Tag.
Heavier towed loads can exceed your chassis’
ability to pull and stop the load and
cause a vehicle crash, damage the motor
home structure or drive train,
and restrict
your coverage under the Fleetwood or chassis
manufacturer’s warranty. Changing the
trailer hitch will not increase the tow capacity
of the motor home.


Remember to also consider the carrying capacity of your tires.
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Old 04-19-2012, 11:30 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackrobinryan View Post
I prefer to assume that the chassis builders (not the coach builder) who engineer and calculate these numbers know a lot more than me about it's capabilities and safety margins. I'll go by their recommendations and not risk my or other's lives.

Towing, I run about 2500# under GCVW.
Actually the coach builder is the one who sets the legal weights for the completed vehicle. That's the Federal Law on incomplete vehicles. But I'm sure it's supposed to be within the chassis builders recommendations.
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Old 04-19-2012, 11:58 PM   #13
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Somewhere in the GVWR number is the federal tax law that comes into play at 26,001 lb. Anything over that changes taxes, or whatever you want to call their fee.

I've always felt that a lot of the RV's could actually handled more weight but exceeding that 26,001 lb limit on the published specs would cost more money even though they are capable of it.
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Old 04-20-2012, 12:05 AM   #14
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Somewhere in the GVWR number is the federal tax law that comes into play at 26,001 lb. Anything over that changes taxes, or whatever you want to call their fee.

I've always felt that a lot of the RV's could actually handled more weight but exceeding that 26,001 lb limit on the published specs would cost more money even though they are capable of it.
Never heard of that for RV's.
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