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Old 03-28-2023, 08:13 AM   #21
JRTJH
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Originally Posted by jabeg View Post
... Seems the Nissan Titan XD might fit the bill. GVWR at 8,750. GVCWR at 17,700. Towing capacity 11,000 Payload at 1,984 or more depending on the trim level. ...
Auto manufacturers and Trailer manufacturers use some "advanced math" to hide the reality of what their products are capable of..... In other words, "they use a marketing department to write data that is skewed more toward the "magic kingdom" than they are "based on reality"....

Take your numbers above for example, and let's "analyze them"....

Nissan says the "GCWR is 17700" and the "Max trailer capacity is 11000". Do the math, that makes the max tow vehicle weight 6700.

OK, let's move to the Keystone specs for a bit: Keystone says the trailer "shipping weight" is 7577. Now, Keystone defines "shipping weight" (in their brochure) as the trailer, as it leaves the factory, with no battery, no propane in the tanks, no spare tire/wheel and NO OPTIONS... Think for a moment about how it would (could) be possible to have an accurate weight on a 23MLE with no options and list the shipping weight as the same as one with two air conditioner units and the SolarFlex 600i with a 270 AH DragonFly battery, a freestanding table/chairs, dual pane windows and a slide topper package have the same "shipping weight" as a "23MLE with no optional equipment"...

So, "brochure shipping weight, is a "best advantage statement" (for the manufacturer)...

Now, lets look at the Keystone pin weight".. It is calculated at "shipping weight" with that same "no optional equipment and empty" data. It is stated at 1200 pounds.

OK, let's do some "reality math": shipping weight 7577/pin 1200. That means the pin weight is 15.8% (the lowest recommended pin weight is 15%)... But the recommended pin weight for best towing is 20-25%. Let's use 20%, but also use a "reality weight" because you'll be putting your camping gear, food and necessities like towels and sheets/blankets in the trailer, not to mention tools, so let's use the trailer GVWR as a start for pin weight calculations: 9900 GVWR and 20% of that is 1980 pounds.....

Now, back to your "NISSAN MAGIC NUMBERS"... GCWR 17700 with a max tow vehicle weight of 6700 pounds and a payload of 1984. Put that trailer pin weight of 1980 and a 150 pound fifth wheel hitch in the truck bed and you'll be 146 pounds over the truck GVWR (before any passengers or cargo) and now, let's "analyze those magic numbers again"...

GCWR 17700 - 9900 trailer = max truck weight of 7800 BUT, the (see above) max truck weight (to get an 11000 trailer) is 6700, but we put 2130 pounds of trailer pin and hitch in the bed, so the truck has to now weigh 8830 (again, before any passengers)...

OK, lets run those numbers again using "real world weights"... GCWR 17700, truck 8830 means the MAX TRAILER can only weigh 8870, BUT OUR TRAILER WEIGHS 9900 ??? What happened to that "magical 11000 pound max trailer weight ?????

So, what happens with the truck GVWR being 8750 and us having a truck/trailer/hitch weight already OVER the GVWR at 8830 ?????

Yep, "magic advertising numbers" to think that truck will tow a 11000 pound trailer "in the real world"... Now, if you didn't need a hitch, could get the trailer pin weight down to 11% and only had a driver with no passengers and only filled the truck gas tank "half full", MAYBE you could "magically tow an 11000 pound trailer, but it would only work "in the brochure or in a television ad, not in the real world.....

In final analysis, that Nissan would (might) work under ideal circumstances and only then, if you always tow the trailer empty and never have any passengers or cargo in the truck. That said, people "do it every day" and "THINK" they are OK because the brochure said .......

Take the "Nissan magic" out of the calculations and it isn't a good choice for "real world towing" of a Cougar 23MLE....
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Old 03-28-2023, 08:28 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by travelin texans View Post
Forget the Nissan or any 1/2 ton for towing a 5th wheel, typically too much pin weight even on the ones they jokingly call "1/2 ton towable".
At the absolute minimum get a 3/4 ton! Personally I'd skip the 3/4 & get a SRW (single rear wheel) 1 ton. The 1 ton is very little more $$, same engines available, same ride, same mileage, same options, but if you really like the rv experience you'll be ready for the rv upgrade by already having the appropriate tow vehicle.
Regardless of what you get remember there's 2 numbers that mean absolutely nothing when pairing a rv to a tow vehicle; the max tow rating of any vehicle & the dry weight of any rv.
Always use 13-15% of the rv GVWR posted on the drivers side front corner as tongue weight, never use the tongue weight from brochures, especially with a rv full of young girls you'll be at that max weight very quickly.
Compare that rv tongue weight to the payload of the vehicle posted on the yellow/white tag on the drivers door jamb stating "occupants and cargo must not exceed XXXXlbs".
For clarity, that 13-15% is "TONGUE WEIGHT" for a travel trailer....

The 23MLE is a fifth wheel and "PIN WEIGHT" for fifth wheels is recommended between 20-25% of trailer weight.....

Danny, I'm not intending to step on your toes, but saw the above info and wanted to clarify that we're talking about fifth wheels, not "bumper pull" travel trailers
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Old 03-28-2023, 09:33 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by JRTJH View Post
For clarity, that 13-15% is "TONGUE WEIGHT" for a travel trailer....

The 23MLE is a fifth wheel and "PIN WEIGHT" for fifth wheels is recommended between 20-25% of trailer weight.....

Danny, I'm not intending to step on your toes, but saw the above info and wanted to clarify that we're talking about fifth wheels, not "bumper pull" travel trailers

When I saw 23mle I was thinking TT as well. When pulled it up I was surprised as you don't see many 5th wheels that start with a 23 or less.
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Old 03-28-2023, 09:41 AM   #24
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jabeg, As I stated in another post, we love our 23MLE.Here is my story. We had a 2022 Thor class C motorhome. Hated it. Camping World gave us what we paid for it. We decided we wanted a 5th wheel and the wife fell in love with the Cougar 23. I had a Ford F-150 with max tow package and fell for the sales pitch for the Cougar 1/2 ton. We bought the 5th wheel and brought it home.
At home I started crunching the numbers and found the sales person had given me the wrong pin weight. Using the factory numbers with our hitch weight and me and wife in truck we were over max payload.
We loaded the camper and using a tongue weight scale I measured the pin weight. We were now 600+ lbs. over weight. I needed a bigger truck. Having always been a Ford man, I wanted a Ford. Unfortunately at that time used F250 and F350 trucks under 250,000 miles only existed with a diesel engine. I had 3 diesel trucks in the past and did not want another one. Could not even find a new 250/350 in my area. After 3 months I finally found a 2022 Ford F250 Super Duty with only 20,000 miles.
We just returned from spending part of the winter in Florida. My truck did great with no lack of power and we really enjoyed our Cougar 23 MLE.
Word of caution! If you look at any 1 ton trucks be sure to check ALL of the weight ratings since some are rated lower than a 2/4 ton. It all depends on the engine and trim. My F250 is a XL trim with the 6.2 L engine. Does not have all of the bells and whistles my F150 had but it gets the job done.
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Old 03-28-2023, 12:53 PM   #25
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Wow, I asked and got great answers and advice. Thanks to all, great things to know and to consider as we start our research and choices for RVing.
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Old 03-28-2023, 02:27 PM   #26
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Cougar23, Iím brand new to the forum. I hope Iím responding correctly. Newly retired and my wife and I are looking at getting into weekend RVing and joining our friends on outings. We are very interested in the 23MLE. So first question are your thoughts on pulling this smaller unit. We just are resisting replacing our older 2006 Silverado 1500 with a 3/4 ton. 95% of my driving the pickup will be without the 5er. So, trying to find something in between. Seems the Nissan Titan XD might fit the bill. GVWR at 8,750. GVCWR at 17,700. Towing capacity 11,000 Payload at 1,984 or more depending on the trim level. Running an online towing calculator, the numbers say I can tow and tow safely. Just wondering if you have any insight to this part of the RVing. Thanks.
To cut through some of the confusion... The estimate of pin weight for a given 5th wheel is 23 percent of gross weight. The numbers given in a sales brochure are very useless. The Cougar 23MLE is 10K lbs gross weight so pin weight is 2300 lbs. Add hitch, weight of stuff in truck to include passengers and you will be over 2800 lbs load on the truck. Since your payload is 1900 lbs, this is pretty much a non-starter. Some 3/4 ton trucks have a payload that is adequate but many do not for that 5th wheel. A one ton truck makes a lot of sense if you are serious about safety and ease of towing.
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Old 03-28-2023, 08:16 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by JRTJH View Post
For clarity, that 13-15% is "TONGUE WEIGHT" for a travel trailer....

The 23MLE is a fifth wheel and "PIN WEIGHT" for fifth wheels is recommended between 20-25% of trailer weight.....

Danny, I'm not intending to step on your toes, but saw the above info and wanted to clarify that we're talking about fifth wheels, not "bumper pull" travel trailers
No problem John!
That's what happens when you assume! I assumed it was a TT.
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Old 04-04-2023, 08:06 PM   #28
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Some 3/4 ton trucks have a payload that is adequate but many do not for that 5th wheel. A one ton truck makes a lot of sense if you are serious about safety and ease of towing.
My 3/4 ton gasser has a payload rating of 3266 lbs., and I have this rig. More payload than I'll ever need. If I did get close to that, I'd better be looking at a diesel instead.
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Old 04-11-2023, 06:39 AM   #29
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My 3/4 ton gasser has a payload rating of 3266 lbs., and I have this rig. More payload than I'll ever need. If I did get close to that, I'd better be looking at a diesel instead.
My 3/4 ton gas has a 3400 lb. payload
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Old 04-18-2023, 12:20 AM   #30
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Just a follow up. We had some BAD roads last trip and I have replaced and/or braces all of the cabinet shelves and the bottom drawer in this the rear of the trailer. Very flimsy construction but fairly simple to replace and reinforce.
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Old 04-18-2023, 08:05 AM   #31
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Just a follow up. We had some BAD roads last trip and I have replaced and/or braces all of the cabinet shelves and the bottom drawer in this the rear of the trailer. Very flimsy construction but fairly simple to replace and reinforce.
We just towed our X-Lite Cougar from Michigan to North Carolina and honestly, I am surprised that we didn't have any "identifiable damage" after the roads we had to tow over...

It's disappointing when it happens to an owner, but they don't call them "ultra-lite" or "half ton towable" for no reason... Keystone and EVERY other RV manufacturer is limited in how "sturdy" they can build a "light weight competitor" for a "heavy weight trailer"...

Sort of like building a tank and then building a "light weight model using coroplast (corrugated plastic) to replace the armor plate"... Yep, that tank suddenly became a "ultra-lite model that can't protect the occupants as well as the heavier model".

t's the same with switching a 3/4" plywood floor for a 1/4" plywood floor with 2" of styrofoam and a 1/8" luan bottom layer... Or making a "walkable roof" into a "non-walkable roof" by using 1/4" (or thinner) plywood and gluing TPO to that rather than to a 3/8" plywood roof (which started out as 1/2" plywood) when EPDM roofing replaced the galvanized steel or aluminum roll roofing used in the 1990's ......

But it's not just the RV world that does this.... We still call them 2x4's, even though they measure 1.5x3.5 inches..... And in the Automobile industry, they used to call them "short bed pickups" but now they're "standard bed trucks" and what used to be a "standard 8' bed" is now called a "long bed model"....
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Old 04-18-2023, 08:48 PM   #32
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I agree. The shelf bottom under the cabinet in the rear of the trailer was made from 1/8” panelling. This is the likeliest compartment for the heavier kitchen appliances.
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Old 04-19-2023, 06:11 AM   #33
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Check the pantry shelving. I had to brace the left and right front corners on all five shelves with metal brackets from Home Depot (or Lowe’s if you prefer). Only thing holding them in place is the staples through the 1/8 luan. And the staples either pull out or pull through the wood.
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Old 04-19-2023, 08:59 AM   #34
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Thanks !
I did reinforce them as well.
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