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Old 03-11-2020, 02:49 PM   #1
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Flat towing Silverado

Hello,

I am purchasing a 2016 Dutch Star 3736. I previously owned a Ventana 3709 and dolly towed a Honda CRV. The Ventana did ok, but it labored in the mountains. I am thinking about flat towing my Chevy Silverado. I am sure the Dutch Star has plenty of power to do so. I am also concerned about the overall length of the coach and tow vehicle. I would appreciate any comments and or experiences you may of had.

Thanks!
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Old 03-11-2020, 03:01 PM   #2
"Formerly Diplomat Don"
 
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I towed my 2012 Silverado 4 door for about five years, four of those years behind my 2014 Dutch Star 4018. It's not going to be a rocket in the hills. If your Ventana had the 400 ISL, you won't notice much of a difference. The 450 ISL in the Dutch Star is pushing a side radiator fan and more weight, so the two should be a wash.

We've been towing a truck of some kind for ten years behind three different 40' coaches. The length will be legal in all states.

Once under way, as with most toads, we hardly noticed the truck. I did feel a little push on the rear of the coach, when towing the Silverado, in low speed turns, like in town.
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Old 03-11-2020, 09:19 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dutch Star Don View Post
I towed my 2012 Silverado 4 door for about five years, four of those years behind my 2014 Dutch Star 4018. It's not going to be a rocket in the hills. If your Ventana had the 400 ISL, you won't notice much of a difference. The 450 ISL in the Dutch Star is pushing a side radiator fan and more weight, so the two should be a wash.



We've been towing a truck of some kind for ten years behind three different 40' coaches. The length will be legal in all states.



Once under way, as with most toads, we hardly noticed the truck. I did feel a little push on the rear of the coach, when towing the Silverado, in low speed turns, like in town.


We were going around Las Cruces today on the bypass, it takes you over the mountain and then back on 10. Grade was an 8% and I was surprised at one point we dropped down to 37 mph! 2019 DS 4018
pulling a GMC Canyon.
Any suggestions Don for climbing up these kind of grades you can pass along?
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Old 03-11-2020, 10:05 PM   #4
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We tow a 16 Suburban behind our DS 4369. We donít break any speed records, and have slowed to 40ish on very steep grades, but it tows well. The 3 level engine brake really does well with descending those grades too!
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Old 03-12-2020, 07:58 AM   #5
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We tow a 16 Suburban behind our DS 4369. We donít break any speed records, and have slowed to 40ish on very steep grades, but it tows well. The 3 level engine brake really does well with descending those grades too!


I was really impressed with the how well it did descending down with the engine brake. That part was impressive! Do you manually play with the transmission going up mountain grades? I had left it in Drive and feel this was a big part of my problem.
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Old 03-12-2020, 08:17 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Granite17 View Post
We were going around Las Cruces today on the bypass, it takes you over the mountain and then back on 10. Grade was an 8% and I was surprised at one point we dropped down to 37 mph! 2019 DS 4018
pulling a GMC Canyon.
Any suggestions Don for climbing up these kind of grades you can pass along?
I'm not sure if your talking about coming over the Organ mountain or Transmountain near El Paso.
If your talking about Transmountain, if I could make a suggestion;

Try Anthony Gap rather than Transmountain, there is very little grade change. Take a look at NM404 just north of the Tx NM border.
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Old 03-12-2020, 08:54 PM   #7
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Always good to remind Newmar owner's to use their transmission lower gears when on 6% plus grades. Both B series and C series engine can run up to 2K plus RPM when pulling grades.
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Old 03-12-2020, 10:38 PM   #8
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I was really impressed with the how well it did descending down with the engine brake. That part was impressive! Do you manually play with the transmission going up mountain grades? I had left it in Drive and feel this was a big part of my problem.
I RARELY mess with the transmission, uphill or down. It seems to shift well on its own - if I try to jump to a lower gear than it selected when climbing, I have to wait till the RPMs are low enough that I donít over rev the engine... and exactly then it shifts. I just let it do its thing now.

Descending, if you have it on cruise, it will pick up too much speed. I cancel the cruise if I can see that will happen, and select one of the three engine brake settings depending on the steepness of the road. I almost never touch the brakes on any descent. Love it!
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Old 03-12-2020, 10:41 PM   #9
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When the engine brake is engaged, the transmission automatically downshifts as soon as it can. It will eventually take you all the way down to 2nd if you let it slow that much.
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Old 03-13-2020, 08:56 AM   #10
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I pulled my 2011 4wd Silverado with our 2006 DS 4024 with 400 ISL for 5 years. Never had a problem, and length was only an issue in a few older, tighter parks. Averaged 7 mpg over that period with that configuration.
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Old 03-13-2020, 12:20 PM   #11
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John, I always tell new owners to let the Allison do the shifting, but as you get miles under your belt with your specific coach, try shifting and see what it does for you.

When I approach a 5% or better grade, I drop the coach into 5th and if I can, I'll get a little bit of a running start. If it's a long grade, the running start doesn't do much.

We have a grade about 80 miles from our house that we climb all the time. In various coaches over the years, I've been able to climb it at different speeds. About two thirds of the way up, the coach drops into 4th and then the last 1/3rd gets even steeper. The coach really drops speed here, so before I loose too much power/momentum, I'll manually downshift to third.

It took me a few long trips and some trial and error to learn what this coach will do on grades. Don't be afraid to experiment with shifting. You'll see what works and what doesn't.

Lastly, once the coach locks in on a speed and holds it (in any gear other than 6th) I hit the (D) drive button on the shifter. It won't upshift until you crest the grade and starts to gain rpm. I do this so I don't forget to upshift after the grade has flattened out.

As a side note.....I hate where Newmar places the shifter. I have to twist my body to see it. One of my future projects is to eliminate one of the cup holders and move the shifter farther forward. I've procrastinated on doing it, because I'll have to cut the panel up and then refinish it. I wasn't sure what to refinish it with. It came to me the other day.....I have left over seat material and will probably upholster the panel.
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Old 03-14-2020, 09:28 AM   #12
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We tow our 2016 Silverado. While this coach has not been over western mountain's yet with long grades, we did go up some steep grades in the Black Hills of SD last fall and all was well. Yes, we slowed down some, but I expect that and just stay in the "slow" lane. Actually, I'm very impressed with the coach's ability to pull this truck (it's a full 4-door and a 4x4, so relatively heavy) and also attain average fuel economy of 7mpg+.

Now if I only did not have to go through an 89 step process of shifting in and out of drive, turning it on and off, disconnecting the battery, etc. to ready it for towing!!!
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Old 03-14-2020, 10:35 AM   #13
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On a steep grade, I will start up the hill at 1800 RPM in 6th gear, downshift to 5th at 1700, which will result in about 2000 RPM. If it drops to 1700 RPM in 5th, I will downshift to 4th, which will again result in about 2000 RPM. Only once have I found it necessary to downshift further, which was on a REALLY long steep grade in the Yukon Territory. -Paul
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Old 03-14-2020, 10:45 AM   #14
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...Now if I only did not have to go through an 89 step process of shifting in and out of drive, turning it on and off, disconnecting the battery, etc. to ready it for towing!!!

On a GM product you have to disconnect the battery???



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