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Old 11-08-2019, 06:45 AM   #41
LewisB
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Originally Posted by TJH View Post
I’m having mixed feelings. The majority of our trailering is 3 to 5 night trips within a 75 mile radius. Occasionally from central Oregon to the coast, just under 200 miles away. We bought both used and have been towing/camping with these for 3 years and the combination has been performing well together. (I upgraded the tires to light truck tires vs the passenger tires the F150s come with.). I could reduce the tongue weight and hitch transfer amount by not putting anything in the bed, and placing more in the rear of the trailer, including start using the slide out rack on the back of the trailer.
Does anyone have guesses as to what the “weakest link” in the GVWR may be? Any other relatively simple things that can be done to improve the situation? Or are there other threads where this is discussed?

I didn’t mean to overtake this string direction. Thanks for the help.
I'm with flybouy Marshall - According to Progressive Insurance, 77% of most vehicle accidents occur within 15 miles of the driver's home. While the numbers might be different and likely lower for RV's, the point is that your distance from home is meaningless when you get passed by that 18 wheeler travelling 20 mph faster than you.

Taking weight out of the bed of your truck (removing cargo) might help meet your tow vehicle gross weight limitations but does NOT change your hitch weight (which is also part of the cargo weight) unless you move that weight to aft of the trailer axles.

Keep in mind that "Reducing the tongue weight" is a two-edged sword. Yes, you can change this dynamic with loading. Manufacturers attempt to do this by moving the axles forward; ever see a 30' trailer with the axles centered on the trailer?. This is an attempt to reduce the tongue weight, making the trailer more "towable" by lighter duty vehicles with limited hitch capabilities. However, reducing the tongue weight also leads to a higher level of instability from wind, wheel alignment issues, road ruts, etc. Carry this thought out to the extreme - load your trailer so that it has "zero" tongue weight - how well is is going to tow in a wind storm. Remember, if you drive on a freeway or road with 18 wheelers, you are ALWAYS in a wind storm - worse yet, think unsuspected and "gusty" wind storm.

So in answer to your search for "simple" solutions, there aren't many. Maybe reduce your expectations for what you can tow and what you need when you do tow. Budget for future expansion of your hardware. Most importantly - keep an open mind. The fact that you are thinking this over, exploring for information, wanting to do right - all great signs that you are on the right track? Keep after it!
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Old 11-08-2019, 07:44 AM   #42
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The weakest link is your present tow vehicle, too little truck with too much rv.!
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Old 11-08-2019, 07:59 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by flybouy View Post
Your not going to like this as it's my opinion so don't be offended.

The first sentence I highlighted is you rationalizing why towing overloaded is ok. I think most folks on here have BTDTGTS. I,m included in that crowd. I was doing the same thing. Came to this forum and several people pointed it out. It's only natural that someone becomes defensive about their decisions and think that the folks telling you differently are just a bunch of "knuckle draggers" that think they are more "manly" for driving larger trucks.

Nothing could be further from the truth. I had my epiphany about 200 miles from home crossing the top of a mountain while passing an 18 wheeler. Thankfully I had cleared the truck (which started the sway) when the wind passing thru the cut in the mountain took over. I consider myself an excellent driver but that experience was unlike ANY other. Thankfully it was a multilane lane highway with shoulders as I used every inch of space between the guide rails. I was ignorant to the potential of the rig in a bad situation and never wanted to repeat that exercise again.


In all honesty the 'weakest link" is you. This isn't a personal attack, just an observation. It's humane nature that we don't want to face reality that we think we can correct the condition by applying "add ons". After all, many stores/websites sell all kinds of "fixes" right? I also realize the delima many face in the situation when you may not financially be able to replace your TV.

So I'm sure some folks will chime in with "I put these on my 1/2 ton truck and now I tow a 15K fiver no problem". Just be cognizant that they are relating their experience/opinions as well. Just know that sooner or later, given enough time and exposure to mother nature and fate, your day to prove you're rig is safe will come.

JMHO
I agree totally.
It's a hard pill to swallow.
I had seen and heard enough in here to realize it works for now but what if.
I didn't want to see the what if. Stuck to trips closer to home on flat land and drove much slower. All the while seeking out a new vehicle.
I got lucky with much work in finding my new vehicle. I do believe if you look for it, you will find it. Stick to your budget, no matter what a couple of salesmen say. You'll find it.
Pore over weights for your current TT and the TV you will need, also think about the possibility of a TT / 5er upgrade in the future.
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Old 11-08-2019, 10:01 AM   #44
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Flybouy, I’m not offended. Last night I was up researching and reading countless articles and forums. One article stated exactly that: The weakest link is the driver. And yes, it was a shock to find out this combo is a mismatch after using it “fine” for the last 3 years. What are the stages of shock? I don’t remember them all but believe it starts will denial and ends with acceptance.
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Old 11-08-2019, 10:38 AM   #45
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Flybouy, I’m not offended. Last night I was up researching and reading countless articles and forums. One article stated exactly that: The weakest link is the driver. And yes, it was a shock to find out this combo is a mismatch after using it “fine” for the last 3 years. What are the stages of shock? I don’t remember them all but believe it starts will denial and ends with acceptance.
The 5 stages of grief that you reference are:
1. Denial and isolation;
2. Anger;
3. Bargaining;
4. Depression;
5. Acceptance

Not to "sermonize" that list, but if you look through any number of threads on this forum, you can see the 5 stages "in action" as posters go from being "pissed at the news" to "announcing their new tow vehicle in the longest running thread on the forum with almost 1700 posts" http://www.keystoneforums.com/forums...ead.php?t=7169

The important "take away" is that you recognize how to keep yourself and your family as safe as possible while enjoying your RV.
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:17 AM   #46
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More truck is better (within reason) Dad had a livestock feed business. I would travel 40 miles twice a day with 80 bags of feed which equaled 4,000 lbs. Day in.....day out, never a glitch with a 3/4 ton pick-up.
We always considered 1/2 ton trucks to be "city trucks", "Gentleman Farmers" trucks, city trucks.
Farmers and construction guys always used 3/4 ton trucks for tow ability and most important of all: CARRY CAPACITY.
A Ford F-250 either gas or diesel depending if you run mountains or not would be a great choice.
A friend of mine who was a Ford Service Manager has always steered me towards the gas side. He is a firm believer in the ability of the F-250. He always says it is closer to a 1 ton truck in ability than being a 3/4 ton truck.

We're still in a holding pattern to drop the coin on a Cougar as my wife is about two years from retirement. When we finally do it........it will be towed with a F-250 Gasser. I like Gas as my buddy says: parts are available everywhere, just about any shop anywhere can work on it if needed, between higher maintenance and additional cost of diesel it offsets the increase in MPG that the diesel gives. With proper P.M. the gasser will last as long as the diesel
BUT:
If we decide to run primarily Colorado or to the East West Va then I would be tempted to go Diesel simply to get the exhaust brake.
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:35 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by RET.LEO View Post
More truck is better (within reason) Dad had a livestock feed business. I would travel 40 miles twice a day with 80 bags of feed which equaled 4,000 lbs. Day in.....day out, never a glitch with a 3/4 ton pick-up.
We always considered 1/2 ton trucks to be "city trucks", "Gentleman Farmers" trucks, city trucks.
Farmers and construction guys always used 3/4 ton trucks for tow ability and most important of all: CARRY CAPACITY.
A Ford F-250 either gas or diesel depending if you run mountains or not would be a great choice.
A friend of mine who was a Ford Service Manager has always steered me towards the gas side. He is a firm believer in the ability of the F-250. He always says it is closer to a 1 ton truck in ability than being a 3/4 ton truck.

We're still in a holding pattern to drop the coin on a Cougar as my wife is about two years from retirement. When we finally do it........it will be towed with a F-250 Gasser. I like Gas as my buddy says: parts are available everywhere, just about any shop anywhere can work on it if needed, between higher maintenance and additional cost of diesel it offsets the increase in MPG that the diesel gives. With proper P.M. the gasser will last as long as the diesel
BUT:
If we decide to run primarily Colorado or to the East West Va then I would be tempted to go Diesel simply to get the exhaust brake.
The diesel torque is kinda nice in steep hills... I will say I would have liked to buy a gas truck but couldn't find a one ton gas truck in my price range (CHEAP). The 6.0 was in my price range as so many consider it a junk engine and they go cheaper than the 7.3 or 6.7. Nobody wants the 6.4. My truck has been fixed to where it is reliable. Cost me some but a lot less than buying a new truck. And please don't swallow the cool-aid on the diesel fuel mileage thing. 10 mpg towing and 14 not-towing. A one ton is too heavy to be a econo vehicle. Maintenance costs on a gas truck have to be less. My truck takes 287,000 quarts of oil at oil change time and filters all over the place add to this. I wanted a V10 but just couldn't find one. They are gas hogs too. Previously had a 7.5L super gas sucker and it was easy and cheap to maintain but was thirsty.

Last stupid comment... got a new battery for my camper. It weighs 47 lbs. Geesh those pounds can add up as far as eating load capacity of a truck. My load capacity is north of 4K lbs so don't have to quite eating pizza yet!
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:46 AM   #48
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We ran an F250 pulling a TT then a 5th wheel. It was a 460 ci. I installed 4.88 gears an a very expensive Gear Vendor OD. It would pull like a diesel - at about 5.5 MPG.
Yes, it worked. But I had to absolutely “thrash” that rig ALL THE TIME!

Then I bought my first diesel! Talk about a difference! My experience is that you can run all of the figures that you want on paper but at the end of the day, if you are doing serious towing, once you own a diesel you won’t go back to gas. Between Increased fuel mileage and resale value, my experience has been that the diesel is a smarter purchase If the primary purpose of the vehicle is towing. And when I tow now it’s a relaxing experience rather than a “thrashing”. JMHO
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:50 AM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RET.LEO View Post
More truck is better (within reason) Dad had a livestock feed business. I would travel 40 miles twice a day with 80 bags of feed which equaled 4,000 lbs. Day in.....day out, never a glitch with a 3/4 ton pick-up.
We always considered 1/2 ton trucks to be "city trucks", "Gentleman Farmers" trucks, city trucks.
Farmers and construction guys always used 3/4 ton trucks for tow ability and most important of all: CARRY CAPACITY.
A Ford F-250 either gas or diesel depending if you run mountains or not would be a great choice.
A friend of mine who was a Ford Service Manager has always steered me towards the gas side. He is a firm believer in the ability of the F-250. He always says it is closer to a 1 ton truck in ability than being a 3/4 ton truck.

We're still in a holding pattern to drop the coin on a Cougar as my wife is about two years from retirement. When we finally do it........it will be towed with a F-250 Gasser. I like Gas as my buddy says: parts are available everywhere, just about any shop anywhere can work on it if needed, between higher maintenance and additional cost of diesel it offsets the increase in MPG that the diesel gives. With proper P.M. the gasser will last as long as the diesel
BUT:
If we decide to run primarily Colorado or to the East West Va then I would be tempted to go Diesel simply to get the exhaust brake.
I have a 2016 F250 gas. Great truck. Love it. Rides just as nice as the F-150 I used to have. We own a grain business so I also have 1-2 tons in the bed on a regular basis.
First “long” trip with the trailer was 200 miles into a 20mph headwind the entire way. Truck pretty much camped out in third gear and 2500-3000 rpm’s the entire way. 5 mpg. Diesel would have been nice in that instance.

One piece of advise if going gas. Order the tallest gear ratio the factory offers. I think it’s either 4.10 or 4.33. Can’t remember. I have the 3.73 and while it’s fine it would have lowered the rpm or allowed the truck to get into 4th gear. Also it raises the max gcvw numbers (although you will probably max out somewhere else first.).
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Old 11-12-2019, 08:03 AM   #50
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I've towed heavy, 16.5k, 5th wheels with both gas & diesel trucks & would not go back to a gasser. The power difference is amazing then throw in the exhaust brake & you're comparing apples to oranges. I agree the fuel mileage is not much different til you get into the mountains, the diesel mileage won't change nearly as much as a gasser not to mention you won't have to have your right foot shoved through the firewall to keep it climbing.
As to maintenance, I quite honestly didn't notice much difference between the two. The diesel oil changes were every 10-15k instead of 3-5k, the oil filters cost the same, the oil cost the same per quart just took more, fuel filters if done myself were about $40 every 50k miles, all other maintenance is the same for both & everyone brings up the DEF which in my case was about $10-12 for 2.5 gallons every 3000-3500 miles which is pretty cheap per mile. The other advantage if towing a large RV with a diesel is you can always fill up at a truck stop without having deal with the idiots at the gas pumps.
If you're planning on going full-time with a RV 12k pounds or more I'd recommend a 350-3500 diesel truck, depending on weight doesn't have to be a dually, over the 250-2500 gasser & hit the road.
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Old 12-08-2019, 01:19 AM   #51
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No on Cougar 26RKS...How about Outback Ultra-Lite 221UMD

Hi All, I'm back!
Hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving!!

Despite how many dealers and service centers told us we could pull the Cougar, we took your advice and chose not to. Thank you for saving us and others from a possible accident.

Now we are looking at the Keystone Outback Ultra-Lite 221UMD. Either a 2019 or 2020...I don't see a difference other than the blind color.
https://www.keystonerv.com/travel-tr...ravel-trailer/

It's just under 5000 lbs so hoping it will work. Can you provide me with your input for towing it?
Our tow vehicle is 2015 Ford F-150 3.5L eco boost, 3.31 axles, 4wheel drive, super crew cab, short bed

It will just be hubby, me, and our chihuahua all totaling a max of 300 lbs.

We're going to get a break controller installed next week.

I look forward to hearing from you...thank you for your help!
Nicole
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Old 12-08-2019, 02:06 AM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dremcomtru View Post
Hi All, I'm back!
Hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving!!

Despite how many dealers and service centers told us we could pull the Cougar, we took your advice and chose not to. Thank you for saving us and others from a possible accident.

Now we are looking at the Keystone Outback Ultra-Lite 221UMD. Either a 2019 or 2020...I don't see a difference other than the blind color.
https://www.keystonerv.com/travel-tr...ravel-trailer/

It's just under 5000 lbs so hoping it will work. Can you provide me with your input for towing it?
Our tow vehicle is 2015 Ford F-150 3.5L eco boost, 3.31 axles, 4wheel drive, super crew cab, short bed

It will just be hubby, me, and our chihuahua all totaling a max of 300 lbs.

We're going to get a break controller installed next week.

I look forward to hearing from you...thank you for your help!
Nicole
Its said on here....a lot. Dry weight from the factory means nothing. It only exists when the trailer leaves the factory. Instead, when buying, use the GVW, which is the combination of the dry weight plus the carrying capacity. For this trailer that is approximately 7200 pounds with a tongue weight of approximately 1100 pounds. Starting at 1900 pounds of payload for your truck, minus 300 passengers, 60 battery, 60 propane, 100 hitch weight,1100 tongue weight is a margin of 280 pounds. You will be under your payload number. You'll need to check the other numbers. Are you under the combined gross weight value, under your rear axle carrying capacity? Can your receiver handle 1100 pounds?
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Old 12-08-2019, 02:07 AM   #53
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I may have made some major stupid math error (it happens), but this is what I see right now.

The Keystone webpage seems written to confuse. 4971 is the dry weight, a weight your rig will never weigh again once it leaves the factory. Dry weight doesn't include propane, battery, and hitch, to name just three heavy items your rig will sprout before you even see it.

Add the 2229 carrying capacity figure to arrive at the true maximum weight of 7200, which presumably is the figure that would show on the side label of the trailer. (Why Keystone doesn't straightforwardly publish that on their webpage is disturbing.) Assume 15% of this is tongue weight, which would be 1080.

Your TV max payload number is 1903. Minus the people and dog at 300 gives 1603 headroom, well within acceptable spec.

However, note that the max capacity of the physical hitch alone on an F150 is 1050. Mmmm.

Now, I believe exceeding the recommended 20% margin is probably reasonable for this single number. If you limited your tongue weight to, say, 950, which seems fair to me, you should be well within the working load of that hitch. If that's 15% of your gross trailer weight, that would limit you to a gross weight of about 6300, or a trailer payload of 1330. It's not 2229, but it's a payload you could make work, even after propane, battery, and hitch have come off the top. When you add up your food, water, clothes, cookware, tools, camp furniture, outdoor toys, and the like, you have to keep the total trailer weight under 6300, and balance it properly.

Note that you're leaving nearly 900 pounds of payload on the table due to limitations in your tow vehicle.
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Old 12-08-2019, 06:56 AM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dremcomtru View Post
Hi All, I'm back!
Hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving!!

Despite how many dealers and service centers told us we could pull the Cougar, we took your advice and chose not to. Thank you for saving us and others from a possible accident.

Now we are looking at the Keystone Outback Ultra-Lite 221UMD. Either a 2019 or 2020...I don't see a difference other than the blind color.
https://www.keystonerv.com/travel-tr...ravel-trailer/

It's just under 5000 lbs so hoping it will work. Can you provide me with your input for towing it?
Our tow vehicle is 2015 Ford F-150 3.5L eco boost, 3.31 axles, 4wheel drive, super crew cab, short bed

It will just be hubby, me, and our chihuahua all totaling a max of 300 lbs.

We're going to get a break controller installed next week.

I look forward to hearing from you...thank you for your help!
Nicole
OK... looked at the floor plan and saw it had a "pet kennel" under the bed. Ya'll planning on sticking your poor little chihuahua under the bed in that "pet kennel". Would LOVE to see how that arrangement works. Also, hope the TV pivots out quite a bit as I mostly sit in my LazyBoy reclining love seat when camping and watch satellite TV (just like at home).

One downside of the floorplan was the curtain rather than a door. I get up real early and like to watch TV and make coffee and the missus and our pups like to sleep. The door makes it possible as it keeps all the noise down

Looks to me like this trailer makes more sense and after camping a few times you will know better what you like and what you don't and what things are really necessary and what you can compromise on.
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Old 12-08-2019, 07:38 AM   #55
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How anyone could pack a literal ton of baggage/ food/ clothing/ etc. in a trailer that size is beyond me.
Knowing what I know now (which isn't a lot, but enough) I would rent a trailer that size for a week / weekend and see how that works out.
I would weigh what I was bringing as I loaded the trailer. When camping I would take stock of what I brought, see what I was missing that I thought was necessary to put in my trailer and make a list. Including tools and leveling equipment hoses etc.
It would probably cost you $1500 to $2000 for a week inclusive. Over that week it would give you some real insight as to what you need or want.
In the long run, you will know the gas consumption, the feel of carrying that with your truck, as well as the real life weights and costs your dealing with.
Heck, if your close to a cat or other weigh scale that would be optimal as well.
Best of luck to you both
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Old 12-08-2019, 08:40 AM   #56
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Time for a 10,000 foot view?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Northofu1 View Post
...Knowing what I know now (which isn't a lot, but enough) I would rent a trailer that size for a week / weekend and see how that works out.
I would weigh what I was bringing as I loaded the trailer. When camping I would take stock of what I brought, see what I was missing that I thought was necessary to put in my trailer and make a list. Including tools and leveling equipment hoses etc.
It would probably cost you $1500 to $2000 for a week inclusive. Over that week it would give you some real insight as to what you need or want.
In the long run, you will know the gas consumption, the feel of carrying that with your truck, as well as the real life weights and costs your dealing with.
Heck, if your close to a cat or other weigh scale that would be optimal as well.
Best of luck to you both
This is GREAT advice! Maybe it is time for you take a very deep breath, step back, and take a 10K foot view of your "journey" so far. You have gone from a 26' trailer with a lot of nice features to a 22' trailer that is really going to feel "small" even for 2 people. [Think in terms of being limited to living in a hotel room for several months.] In your original post, you indicate you plan to live in this unit. Are you really going to be happy with this rig? If you think so, invest the time/funds to test that theory with a rental rig! So far, your decisions are being driven by your desire to keep your existing tow vehicle - but you are discovering that it really isn't designed to function as you intend to use it.

Please don't take this in a negative way - you are doing everything in a really SMART way! Asking questions, changing your expectations to match reality - all good stuff! Maybe it is time to rent & test your expectations against reality. Purchasing a trailer that you will ultimately not be happy with, being towed by a vehicle that really isn't all that capable, will only place you twice as deep in a hole that is even harder to exit in the future. It would be money well spent to test you final decision before making the financial plunge!

Just IMHO...
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Old 12-08-2019, 12:31 PM   #57
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Trying to Make Something Work for Tow Vehicle

Hi All,

Thank you for your honest feedback...it's what I want to hear and will have Hubby read and look at the technical parts.

I thought I would be hearing yes, yes, yes but I'm happy for your honesty.

I guess with this not so mighty tow vehicle, the best thing would be a tent trailer, or single axle TT....so sad you F150 Minnie Mouse.

In the beginning we intended to live in the TT on property...Mother-in law and her small dog moved in a few months ago...we gave her our master bed/bath and wanted to have our own space but it seems we've adjusted and things are going much better than we thought. Now, there's no need to live in the trailer. I would still like to travel to other states at some point so a nicer trailer would have been great.

Yes, I'm clinging to this tow vehicle and just trying to make it work. We've never camped so hubby decided to buy something smaller and just get out there. If we like camping HOPEFULLY we can afford to make changes later as needed, and if we don't we didn't spend as much, can sell the trailer, and keep the truck that he likes. The alternative is traveling in our Subaru and staying in hotels or vacation rentals/airbnbs. It might even be less expensive in the long run wouldn't allow me to be out in nature the way I'd like.

I agree with renting a trailer to test but hubby, not so much so. Perhaps he'll agree after reading the posts.

This is the closest I could get the TV to the theater seating of all the other floor plans. I'm one eyed so I would prefer it right in front of me. I could see watching dvds while out camping if I can see it without straining my eyes. There were a few floorplans with the TV right in front but didn't have a dinette that hubby wants.

I also agree with the bedroom curtain rather than a wall/door. Hubby gets up earlier than I, and the noise reduction would have been great!

I'm not sure if we'll stick our little chi in the pet kennel, if so, I'll remove the door. About 7lbs, she only needs a tiny bed for sleeping. But it's a nice option just in case I need to crate her for any reason.


The 26RKS, ticked all the boxes and would have been my home away from home, I love that TT and wouldn't foresee a need to ever change...but camping doesn't have to luxurious right?
With something smaller and not as nice, I can still get out there and see the beauty, have a roof over my head, and camp simply and so much better than a tent. I must see my cup half full and not half empty.

I'm bound and determined to get out there to enjoy the beauty but want to tow safely and responsibly. I'll have hubby look at the technical questions asked.
Thank you for your help! I'll report back after we discuss this more.
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Old 12-08-2019, 12:44 PM   #58
LewisB
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My personal compliments to you and your hubby on your comprehensive search and desire to “get it right“. It is very unusual on this forum and absolutely refreshing to see somebody new to RVing working this hard to find just the right rig. If you are not going to live in it full-time, the smaller rig may be absolutely perfect and you will love being able to travel, take it into the forest and enjoy the surroundings.

Keep up the good work: best of luck and we will see you down the road!
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Old 12-08-2019, 01:10 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by Northofu1 View Post
How anyone could pack a literal ton of baggage/ food/ clothing/ etc. in a trailer that size is beyond me.

Weight adds up fast. If you are the type who likes to travel with his freshwater tank full, you've just eaten up a quarter ton right there.

When we bought our first rig 20 years ago, we took a one week shakedown cruise, then packed up for a year's excursion around the US with a 10-year-old. We had to homeschool him to our district's standards, which included a pretty stiff reading list. This was before the era of e-books, so we had two crates of physical hardcovers in the cargo hold. DW, a mistress of Tetris when it comes to packing things, was pleased as punch that our rig came in precisely at max weight at departure. Knowing what I know now, we were probably excessively overweight for the payload of our Suburban 2500, though it didn't seem to show in towing responsiveness or performance. The silver lining was that as he plowed through each book, we would just leave it in a campground swap-a-book library, so as we traveled we continually got lighter and lighter. :-)
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Old 12-08-2019, 01:13 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by LewisB View Post
My personal compliments to you and your hubby on your comprehensive search and desire to “get it right“. It is very unusual on this forum and absolutely refreshing to see somebody new to RVing working this hard to find just the right rig.

Most probably because it's rare for someone to join a help forum before already being financially committed to a problem configuration.
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