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Old 12-30-2020, 09:44 PM   #1
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Choosing a TT

Our plan is to be on the road for most of May and Jun every summer. Boondock when possible, parks when boondocking is not possible, occasional hotel if we need a break. X-mas in the Florida keys. Maybe a short spring break trip every year. The summer trips will be long hauls. Georgia to Colo or AZ or the Pacific NW.

Tow vehicle is a 2020 F150 supercab. 5.0, 3.31 axle. 9100# tow capacity, 2135# payload.

1. Im thinking that I should keep the trailer GVW under 7500#. Planning on a bit of mountain driving.

2. Two axles. If I blow a tire, I have three on the road vs one on the road with a single axle.

3. Do I need to be concerned with frontal area? Fords towing guide says a max of 60 sf frontal area for a trailer. Most TT's will exceed that. Also many TT's have a sloped front and are more aerodynamic than a square front.

4. Is there anything I can do to ease the turbulence between the F150 and TT?

I really like the Coachman Apex 265RBSS. GVW is 7600#, it has the floorplan we like, rear bath, pass through storage, outdoor kitchen and queen bed.
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Old 12-31-2020, 12:09 AM   #2
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You didn't say if this will be your first trailer. Always buy a used trailer as your first one. That's the best advice I ever received. You'll likely want something different after using one for a while.
You have some long trips planned. I think you'll find out quickly what you like and need. You'll be surprised on how much stuff you'll pack and collect along the way.
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Old 12-31-2020, 02:28 AM   #3
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I think a 7600 lb trailer is a bit much for an F-150. You can do it (many people do) but you will be much happier in an F-250, especially if you're going to do cross country road trips. For me, i wouldn't want to go much more than 5000 lbs with a 1/2 ton pickup.

Definitely go for dual axles. You are right to be thinking about what happens when you get a flat on a single axle trailer. Also, a two axle trailer is much more stable (less sway and porpoising).
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Old 12-31-2020, 08:23 AM   #4
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Agree 7,600lb is too much for a F-150 5.0litre. A 6,000lb gvwr trailer would be much more comfortable to tow long distance.
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Old 12-31-2020, 09:20 AM   #5
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Why is the 5.0 a limiting factor? 395hp/400 tq with a 10 speed auto.

The 2 valve V10 in Class C is rated at 305/420 with a GCWR of 20,000#.

The Chevy 6.0 in a Class C is rated at 323/373 with a GCWR of @16,000#

The Apex UVW is 5652, GVWR 7600. Between the F150 and trailer, thats 4088# of cargo capacity, about 25% of the rated GCWR of 14,200#

I know many of you give good advice on how much stuff people carry. We are minimalists. If you walked into our house, you would look around and ask if we had been robbed. We pretty much only have what we need and use, we dont have stuff to look at.

Im not being argumenative, Im trying to understand why you feel the 5.0 with a 10 speed transmission, that is much more capable than the 6.0 or the 6.8 with a 5 or 6 speed transmission should only tow at 2/3 the rated capacity.

I considered an F250, but we only plan on towing the trailer about 3 months a year. The other 9 months we dont need the extra capacity of the F250. The bigger truck is a PITA to drive in town, so the 5.0 f150 was the compromise.
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Old 12-31-2020, 09:48 AM   #6
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Several factors come into play when deciphering numbers.

You only have a 9100 lb tow rating for mechanical reasons. The 3.31 gears are for economy. 3.73 gears are for towing and less for economy. 3.55 are the best compromise.
You'll notice tow rating go up with the higher rear end gears, thats because it puts less strain on the motor, trans and driveline.

Power doesn't change regardless of gearing. You'll have the power to tow 12,000 lbs but you're de-rated because of the rear gears.

If you want to max tow at 7500 lbs then IMO and BTDT look for a shorter trailer. Something in the 25-26 OAL range. Stay away from the 32+ foot range.
More mass from a long TT will catch wind easier and cause your truck to become less stable.

I towed a 7200 lb 31' TT with an F150 145 WB and it was not that comfortable until I purchased a used Hensley Arrow hitch.

If you want to tow 7500 lbs with your truck then I'd suggest getting a premium style hitch like a
https://hensleymfg.com/product/hensl...trailer-hitch/

or

https://store.propridehitch.com/prop...control-hitch/

Some people call these hitches band aides, but after using one I can guarantee that you'll have a sway proof towing experience. If you plan on that much traveling with that weight and a 1/2 ton truck then using an HA or PP will make long days behind the wheel a non event.
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Old 12-31-2020, 10:14 AM   #7
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That might be a bit long for the PNW. Weve got lots of trees and our National Park/Forest Service CGs were largely built by the CCC in the 1930s so the sites tend to be pretty small.
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Old 12-31-2020, 10:30 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmcgc View Post
Our plan is to be on the road for most of May and Jun every summer. Boondock when possible, parks when boondocking is not possible, occasional hotel if we need a break. X-mas in the Florida keys. Maybe a short spring break trip every year. The summer trips will be long hauls. Georgia to Colo or AZ or the Pacific NW.

Tow vehicle is a 2020 F150 supercab. 5.0, 3.31 axle. 9100# tow capacity, 2135# payload.

1. Im thinking that I should keep the trailer GVW under 7500#. Planning on a bit of mountain driving.

2. Two axles. If I blow a tire, I have three on the road vs one on the road with a single axle.

3. Do I need to be concerned with frontal area? Fords towing guide says a max of 60 sf frontal area for a trailer. Most TT's will exceed that. Also many TT's have a sloped front and are more aerodynamic than a square front.

4. Is there anything I can do to ease the turbulence between the F150 and TT?

I really like the Coachman Apex 265RBSS. GVW is 7600#, it has the floorplan we like, rear bath, pass through storage, outdoor kitchen and queen bed.
I tow a 7,600 trailer with my Expedition, but it's a 3.5 Ecoboost with 3.31 gears. It tows fine. Your truck is lighter, but it won't have the low RPM torque of the Ecoboost and will need to use the full gear range. Towing at altitude will likely suck as well. I suggest renting something comparable to what you think you'll want to tow.
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Old 12-31-2020, 11:40 AM   #9
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Im looking at the max I could comfortabley tow, then from there start looking at floorplans and ammenities.

We dont want a Murphy bed, tiny shower or dinette only.

We do want a queen bed, dinette and sofa, 25'-ish length, tub and shower.

An outdoor kitchen is a bonus, we dont cook inside. If its raining we eat sandwiches until it stops raining.

+ or - on a slide, we dont care.

We want to visit Rocky Mtn National Park, Yellowstone, Little Big Horn, Crater Lake, Columbia River Gorge and Pikes Peak, so lots of high altitude driving. Im wanting out of Georgias summer humidity.
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Old 12-31-2020, 01:39 PM   #10
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We camp in many of those areas every couple of years. We tow a 23 5,700 GVWR trailer with a 5.7 Ram 1500, with 3.92 gears. The truck has no issues, sure a more powerful engine would get me up the hill quicker, but there are many factors that go into a proper set up than that. Towing with any 1/2 ton truck all aspects should be looked at. Wheelbase of TV, overall length and weight of trailer, gearing, and towing specs, and a quality WDH.

Personally I would go no longer than 25 overall length, and 6,500 GVWR. Some like Grand Design will have a sofa/ottoman with a table built in for dining that may work for you. A walk around queen bed for us was most important. We only have a large dinette, with no sofa, and really have no need, as we go camping to spend time outside. If its raining that day, we put on a rain coat, and go have some fun.
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Old 12-31-2020, 04:23 PM   #11
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bmcgc, 7500 lbs is too much for my F150 3.5 Ecoboost IMHO. Our ORV is probably usually closer to 8000 but what's 500 lbs amongst friends? It has managed for 6 months, but only just. Of course Ford said I could tow 11,000 pounds but I guess I didn't see the fine print that said it had to be in Kansas. I ordered a F350 this week.
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Old 12-31-2020, 09:17 PM   #12
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Horsepower has very little to do with towing capacity. If I wanted I could probably get a 42’ fifth wheel moving with a Honda Civic. It’s everything else to consider. Brakes, axles, springs, all things to consider.
I know I wouldn’t want to pull our trailer with a half ton, even with empty weight just above 7,000 lbs.
The tow vehicle is the anchor. Too light and the trailer can yank the truck around with ease. And make for a very nerve wracking experience.
One for example, just last season we were coming home down the expressway. A car came up the entry ramp in front of us. Instead of merging into traffic, it sideswiped the guardrail and came to a dead stop in the right lane directly in front of us. Horsepower didn’t matter here. It was how the truck handled panic breaking and sudden weight changes.
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Old 12-31-2020, 11:04 PM   #13
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I think that renting a unit close to what you're looking at would be a wise decision. Take it out and get a feel for what you're thinking about getting into. Before putting all that money down. I think everyone is just being honest about our experiences. We've all made mistakes. That's the true beauty of this place. We can learn from other peoples mistakes and wisdom.



Good luck and happy camping.
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Old 12-31-2020, 11:17 PM   #14
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This comes up several times a year---remember that a Toyota towed the space shuttle. A 1/2 ton has lighter tires, brakes, springs, etc. Therefore, limits have to be placed on your choice of trailer.
We've towed a trailer over 40,000 miles, and wouldn't go under a 3/4 ton tow vehicle. We currently tow 10,000 lbs safely with over 2500 lbs in the truck.
IF you have to stay with a 1/2 ton, maybe check out GeoPro trailers.
The whole RV thing is about fun and adventure--don't "try to get by," because there is a bigger chance of problems if you do. Not trying to sound like a bummer, but this is a good place to question and learn.
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