View Full Version : Tow vehicles

02-23-2011, 05:01 PM
Hello everyone. DW and I recently sold our latest motorhome (after 25 years of using various models) and have decided to go the 5th wheel way. Have been without a pickup for 6 years now and I miss it!! :( We've narrowed our choices down to a couple Keystone Laredo 5ers with hitch weights ranging from a "listing" of 1785 up to 2000lbs. I am leaning towards getting a Chevy Silverado and my question is...can we get by with the 2500HD model? It would save money that can be used elsewhere but would purchase the 3500 if necessary. We 'probably' wouldn't load much more than about 500-600lbs of 'stuff' for any trip into the trailer as we will not be full timing, but may spend anywhere from 3 - 4 weeks in it at a time. Thanks in advance for all replys.


02-23-2011, 08:07 PM
Welcome to the forum Herap. As an observation, I think your estimate of 500-600 lbs of "stuff" is on the low side. In addition to the "stuff" you put in your RV, you have to include the additional weight of all the "stuff" that you are going to add to your TV as well - weight of driver and passengers, hitch, and any other items that you might throw in the truck bed, such as a box, etc. When you are determining the weight of all your additional "stuff", don't forget to include the weight of full propane tanks, H/W tank, and any water you might carry along. In my opinion, you will end up with more than 600 lbs in your 5th wheel. You might be surprised at how much extra weight you end up with --- both in your TV and your 5th!
I would think that doubling your estimate would be closer to the amount.

Jim W
02-24-2011, 04:55 AM
Hi, and welcome to the forum.
I agree totally with Festus and his recommendation on the amount of stuff you will carry. The hitch weight you quoted usually from the manufacture is low, almost too low to really being meaningful. I would use a 15% (on the low end) to 20% (on the upper end) for the pin weight of the fiver. I would add the shipping weight + the carrying capacity weight, then mulipty by 15% to 20% to find the pin weight. Take a Laredo 310RE, this would be 13,000 LBS total, then you would either see 1950 Lbs or a max of 2600 LBS on the rear axle from the pin weight. Add to this the hitch weight, fuel, DW and what ever else you carry in the truck such as tools, snacks and the like. This could be over the recommend GCVW and axle weights of the 3/4 ton truck.
I know you stated your preference for a Chevy/GMC pick-up truck, but look at this web site. http://www.dodge.com/bodybuilder/year.pdf
What I want you to review is the techinal section. In this section the Dodge Body builders web site provides informatiom on towing a 5er and or a TT. A 1 ton diesel with 4:10 gears and a single wheel model year 2010 will tow a 16,800 LBS trailer with a GCVW of 24,000 LBS. So I would be looking at a 1 ton signal wheel truck if available.
Jim W.


02-24-2011, 05:20 PM
Thanks for the replys Festus2 and Jim W. I was 'wishing' that some knowledgable person would say that 3/4 ton would be okay believing all along that we would need a 1 ton vehicle. Jim, you're probably correct in raising my 600 pound guess. Actually I was thinking in addition to the 'normal' added weight of driver, water, DW, gas etc., but with plenty of storage in a 5er, we would more than likely have more than my 'guess'. All in all I appreciate your comments and look forward to more discusions in various topics throughout the forum. Thanks again guys!


02-25-2011, 08:30 AM
Welcome Ray (& wife),

We have a 2010 Laredo 5th wheel, and have been very happy with it. It's our 2nd Keystone.

I agree, 500-600 lbs is a fairly low estimate of cargo/supplies for 2 adults.

You may already know this, but... the hitch weight "listings" are for dry/unloaded hitch weights (& without options). And, as Jim suggested - using a *percentage* of a 5th wheel's GVWR is a more realistic 'estimate' of the loaded pin/hitch weight, when trying to match truck & trailer (on paper). We've always used '20%' for planning purposes.

In response to your question & comment: "can we get by with the 2500HD model?"; and "'wishing' that some knowledgable person would say that 3/4 ton would be okay..."

Wellll... what about a 'yes & no' blanket statement opinion from a Chevy owner?? ;)

Yes, some of the Laredo's may fall within the 2500 capacities/ratings; but no, probably not the ones that you're considering! :D ;) All kidding aside - there's a few Laredo owners here, so if you have any questions, we'll try to answer... without joking around! Again, welcome to the forum & good luck with your decision(s).

Terri, the Chevy co-pilot [& DH Kevin] :)

02-25-2011, 11:40 AM
Thanks Terri,

We agree on the weight issue. We've been using the 20% number to figure what the weight would be on the rear axle. We just haven't been using a big enough 'added stuff' number to the equation. We're looking at either the 310 or the newly aded 324 models. We like the triple slide issue to max out the living area. Only question is whether we can get by with the counter space in the 310.
Thanks again all for your comments.


02-25-2011, 11:57 AM
I am pleased to note that the "only question is whether WE can get by with the counter space in the 310". You would, of course, also be very concerned about having enough counter space to prepare meals - for you and your wife.