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Old 02-21-2021, 07:54 PM   #1
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Flat towing with a Wayfarer

I am reentering the RV market after a years hiatus, and am seriously considering a Tiffin Wayfarer. I am struggling with the much discussed OCCC issue, but also have a question with regard to flat towing. My present car would be about 300 or 400 lbs over the maximum tow weight of 4,220 lbs., but before I reluctantly look for a less weighty auto, I would appreciate any inputs from Wayfarer owners who have towed autos that are in the 4,000 lb range. General handling, ability to handle grades, crosswind issues, any other insights would be appreciated.

Rod
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Old 02-22-2021, 06:05 AM   #2
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Not a Wayfarer, but I towed a 2020 Jeep Cherokee behind my 2019 LTV Unity. The Unity was built on the new MB chassis. The Cherokee weighs about 4200lbs. The LTV is substantially lighter than the Wayfarer, it had about 1700lbs OCCC.

Pulling power on grades is actually quite good. We generally maintained 45MPH or better at elevation in the Rockies. The 600HP guys passed us, but we passed everyone else. If you look at the power to weight ratio of a 15,000lb Sprinter & tow car, it’s actually better than most DP coaches. And the Turbo diesel makes full power at 10,000ft elevation. The new 7 speed transmission helps too - always a good gear.

IMHO the weight of your tow will be a problem. In crosswinds the Cherokee had enough mass to wag the rear of the LTV. It was not dangerous, it it could get annoying. Adding more mass back there is only going to make things worse.

I think the biggest problem is brakes. In my opinion you won’t have enough stopping power on long descents. I would get hot brake smell on long descents. They never faded (well, not much) but they were working hard. I use an RVI3 in the toad. I would apply firm braking to insure the RVI engaged toad brakes, shave off 10-15MPH, then let the brakes cool. A Wayfarer plus your toad would be another 1,500ish lbs heavier in my estimation. I would not be comfortable with that based on my experience. You just can’t put enough brakes inside the 16 inch wheels on a Sprinter.
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Old 02-22-2021, 08:50 AM   #3
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I tow a Jetta Sportwagen TDI behind my Wayfarer QW. I estimate the Jetta between 3500 to 3700 lbs. I installed Demcoís Stay n Play brakes. The rotors were slightly warped when I bought the Jetta so I upgraded to a higher performance slotted rotors to handle the heat better. Properly adjusted, the braking with the toad is comparable to solo.

I have no issues climbing. For the most part it will maintain speed up all but the steepest grades. Mine is on a 2018 chassis. In 2019 MB went with a 7 speed transmission so it may even perform better

I have seen other Wayfarers pulling Jeeps so apparently they ignored the limit.

I wish the Jetta was lighter but not enough to justify downsizing to something lighter.
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Old 02-22-2021, 12:06 PM   #4
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Glad to see this thread as I was about to post the exact same question.
I have a 2018 Wayfarer TW and will be towing a 2005 Wrangler. Weight of the Wrangler is approx 4400lbs on a scale. I found a screaming deal on a Blue Ox 10000lb tow bar (overkill I know) that includes a Blue Ox Patriot ll brake controller. Thereís no way Iíd try to tow anything with this rig without a brake actuator, but with this setup I think Iíll be safe. Planning to add a rear sway bar to subdue some of the side sway before heading out west.
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Old 02-23-2021, 05:09 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ejagnut View Post
I am reentering the RV market after a years hiatus, and am seriously considering a Tiffin Wayfarer. I am struggling with the much discussed OCCC issue, but also have a question with regard to flat towing. My present car would be about 300 or 400 lbs over the maximum tow weight of 4,220 lbs., but before I reluctantly look for a less weighty auto, I would appreciate any inputs from Wayfarer owners who have towed autos that are in the 4,000 lb range. General handling, ability to handle grades, crosswind issues, any other insights would be appreciated.

Rod
I think you'll be fine. Obviously the four-down toad doesn't add any "sprung" weight beyond the weight of the tow bar itself. So, the suspension isn't really effected by the weight of the toad itself. The engine, transmission, and brakes are your main concerns. A supplemental brake system for the Toad should be considered mandatory with a toad that weighs as much as yours. Beyond that, drive conservatively and watch your temps on the hills. You'll love the Wayfarer. Don't be overly concerned about the OCCC numbers.
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Old 02-23-2021, 10:53 AM   #6
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Thanks to all that have replied. Based on the encouraging replies, before downsizing my car I will run some trials with my present car (Land Rover Discovery). I have towed Discoveries since 1995, but that was with class As. Never felt the need for auxiliary brakes, but for a chassis as small as the Sprinter I believe an auxiliary braking system is absolutely imperative, regardless of the size of the towed vehicle (well, maybe not for the MB Smart).
Guess I am going to start researching auxiliary braking systems.

Rod
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Old 02-23-2021, 11:43 AM   #7
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Many people tow at the limit or overweight. Personally, I wouldn't but that's just me. I want to be able to not just tow, but safely stop my set up. I would NOT be without an auxiliary brake unit in the toad. God forbid there was ever an accident & by not having one, I could be liable for negligence if anyone was injured.

I'm going to be in the same boat as I'm downsizing from our Phaeton to something along the lines of the Wayfarer, size-wise. I've got a Honda CRV-EXL AWD which is ~3500lbs that I may be towing with my smaller, next RV. Whatever RV I end up with, I will be sure to be well within its capabilities, even if it means changing my toad.

Good luck.
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Old 02-23-2021, 12:07 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ejagnut View Post
Thanks to all that have replied. Based on the encouraging replies, before downsizing my car I will run some trials with my present car (Land Rover Discovery). I have towed Discoveries since 1995, but that was with class As. Never felt the need for auxiliary brakes, but for a chassis as small as the Sprinter I believe an auxiliary braking system is absolutely imperative, regardless of the size of the towed vehicle (well, maybe not for the MB Smart).
Guess I am going to start researching auxiliary braking systems.

Rod
FWIW, I think most states require supplemental brakes on anything being towed that weighs more then 1,000 pounds. You can be sure the PI lawyers are aware of this. Glad you will be getting them on your toad and congrats on your new coach.
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Old 02-24-2021, 08:50 PM   #9
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Crusie Control Does the trick

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow5501 View Post
Not a Wayfarer, but I towed a 2020 Jeep Cherokee behind my 2019 LTV Unity. The Unity was built on the new MB chassis. The Cherokee weighs about 4200lbs. The LTV is substantially lighter than the Wayfarer, it had about 1700lbs OCCC.

Pulling power on grades is actually quite good. We generally maintained 45MPH or better at elevation in the Rockies. The 600HP guys passed us, but we passed everyone else. If you look at the power to weight ratio of a 15,000lb Sprinter & tow car, itís actually better than most DP coaches. And the Turbo diesel makes full power at 10,000ft elevation. The new 7 speed transmission helps too - always a good gear.

IMHO the weight of your tow will be a problem. In crosswinds the Cherokee had enough mass to wag the rear of the LTV. It was not dangerous, it it could get annoying. Adding more mass back there is only going to make things worse.

I think the biggest problem is brakes. In my opinion you wonít have enough stopping power on long descents. I would get hot brake smell on long descents. They never faded (well, not much) but they were working hard. I use an RVI3 in the toad. I would apply firm braking to insure the RVI engaged toad brakes, shave off 10-15MPH, then let the brakes cool. A Wayfarer plus your toad would be another 1,500ish lbs heavier in my estimation. I would not be comfortable with that based on my experience. You just canít put enough brakes inside the 16 inch wheels on a Sprinter.
I had a 2017 Dynomax Isatta 3 24FW & I found out while towing a 2016 Ford C-max as our Toad that when Climbing or descending I use the Cruise control and it holds power better going up hill and then I set it lower for going down hill and it holds back quite nicely without burning up your brakes. You might want to give this a try . The transmission holds it back and you don't wear out your brakes It worked great for me. Just didn't Like FR quality
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Old 03-05-2021, 12:02 PM   #10
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I have towed my 2006 CRV WITH my ‘20 Wayfarer TW. I’d guess it was in the 3,500lb range...and it did pretty good. When I would go up steep grades, I would self-limit how hard I worked the engine/transmission using the torque readout and the temps as my guide. I’m not one to max-out my expensive equipment for no good reason.
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Old 08-02-2021, 10:20 AM   #11
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We are towing Envision with 2018 wayfarer can we use cruise control down hill just place blue ox towing
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Old 08-02-2021, 10:56 PM   #12
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We are towing Envision with 2018 wayfarer can we use cruise control down hill just place blue ox towing
Not sure exactly what youíre asking. If youíre asking - can you use cruise control while pulling a toad - the answer is technically yes. If youíre asking if your cruise control will serve in place of a braking device while pulling a toad instead of a brake controller - the answer is NO!
A Buick envision is 3750-4100lbs.
Please clarify so we can give a better answer.
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Old 08-03-2021, 04:56 PM   #13
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Well, we now have 3/4 months and a few thousand miles experience on our Mercedes based coach, but it is a Winnebago Navion rather than a Tiffin. I preferred the Tiffin for quality, but liked the layout and livability of the Navion (Tiffin kitchen sink was so small as to be unusable, tiny refrigerator, no closet space, etc.) We have had some significant problems, but none attributable to the Winnebago coach build so far (generator, water pump, levelers, water heater, retractable steps).

I elected to keep the Land Rover (4,600 lbs dry weight) on a trial basis, and the Mercedes handled even the steepest grades with out undue strain. No, it does not charge up the hills like my Cummins ISL powered coach did, But I am gaining patience in my old age. One question that I keep forgetting to ask Winnebago/ Mercedes is in regard the the cruise control function on steep down grades. The speed is maintained at the set speed, but that could not be effected by means of engine compression alone, so I assume the CC ls controlling the brakes. If so, I wonder if brake over heating on long, steep down grades could occur unnoticed? And do the brake lights function in that mode?

And with regard to supplemental braking on my Land Rover, I purchased the surge braking system from NSA, and it performed quite satisfactorily. Well, when it performed. The last week of our last trip it quit performing at all. The braking hardware of the tow bar is now back at the factory, and I am waiting for the autopsy.

Cheers,
Rod
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