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Old 04-08-2016, 08:00 AM   #1
jreed456
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New Truck, New Trailer

Hello

We are new to the forum and are planning on purchasing our first travel trailer in the next year. I have been looking at a 2013 f150 Lariat with the 6.2L V8. Looked at the ford charts (axel ratio, wheel base, etc.) and says it will tow 9,500 lbs. We are interested in the Bullet 274bhs dry weight 5,095 max weight 7,585. My wife and I both love this truck it is in our price range used with 13,000 miles. I am however, concerned with the mpg. I know its low 11 city 17 highway, but that looks like itís the same for the f250. Any thoughts or opinions would be greatly appreciated. Unfortunately or fortunately, I have already fallen in love with this truck; it looks great and has all the features we are looking for. So what I really want is everyone to tell me that the truck is great go buy it.

Thanks,
JR
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Old 04-08-2016, 08:28 AM   #2
Mike484
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That should be fine. We have a Passport 2890rl and a GMC 1/2 ton and just went from Houst to Florida and back with no trouble, a little sluggish going up steep hills/bridges, otherwise it was fine.
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Old 04-08-2016, 08:33 AM   #3
Ken / Claudia
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Really hard to buy any truck that has a gas engine and tow a rv and get good mpg. Many do without pulling. Think ahead a few years. I say this because most get into RVing and than need or want bigger for many reasons. If so, your starting with a truck that has the least amount of ability to pull a RV compared to the 3/4 or 1 tons. That truck may be over loaded with the F150, camp gear, food, and trailer etc.
A few things about trucks and pulling a RV. You need to know the payload rating. That is where the smaller trucks fail. They can pull but not carry much weight. That trailer likely has a tongue weight when loaded of 900 lbs plus or minus. My little trailer see below was weight checked loaded and is 950 lbs. That is added weight to the hitch. Than add hitch, people and anything you put into the truck that equals payload. And can easily get more than 1500 lbs. Tires likely need upgraded to carry the weight of a RV. Just a few things to consider. And yes many use that truck to pull a RV and many that pull RVs with any size of truck can be overloaded. Just drive on the interstate during the summer and see how many pull hills at 35 mph or have the rear truck bumper a few inch's from the road. Rear tires riding on or near the side walls. All signs of to much trailer.
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Old 04-08-2016, 08:55 AM   #4
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Well....it sounds like you are going to get the truck because you love it. Instead of asking everyone to say "it's a great truck, go get it", it sounds more like you are asking folks to say "it's a great combo, go for it" - maybe you want to look at something a little smaller.

The 6.2 will pull the trailer albeit struggling on hills and against heavy winds. The mileage will be poor - just a given with a heavier trailer and a gas engine. You will very possibly be over your payload; tongue weight will be around 900lbs + 100lbs or so for hitch to start = 1000lbs off payload. Max payload for truck may be only 1500lbs (look at sticker inside door to see) so that may be maxed out before you begin. The truck will probably have p rated tires and you will want to upgrade them more than likely if you go with the combo. You also need to know the rear axle ratio. Anything less than a 3.55 or so will result in a poor towing experience.
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Old 04-08-2016, 09:19 AM   #5
busterbrown
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I just bought a new Bullet 308bhs weighing it just over 6000lbs. I'm pulling it with our Yukon XL Denali with the 6.2L engine. It pulls great with minimal sway. A good distribution hitch (Equal-i-zer/Blue OX/Reese Dual CAM) and proper cargo loading in the trailer helps tremendously. Stay within your payload and tongue weight capacities and that F150 will pull it with ease.
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Old 04-08-2016, 10:31 AM   #6
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The weights on the Bullet should be fairly close to mine. My hitch weight is around 740lbs loaded without any water in tank. It was 860lbs with a full tank of water. You should be alright on payload. With everything loaded, I'm close to my payload. I upgraded to LT tires, which I would recommend. Gas engines are going to get 8-10 MPG pulling this type of load. I usually get 9. I pulled another travel trailer and it was about the same.

All of this being said, I almost bought a 2500 Diesel when I got my 1500 in 2013. At the time, I had a 4500lb boat and didn't need the extra payload. It would be nice to have that extra payload cushion now.
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Old 04-08-2016, 11:16 AM   #7
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Thank you all for the responses. I asked the dealer to take a picture of the door sticker for me so I can see max payload. Like I said we are a little less then a year out so we really are just in the planning stage with this. (After it rained the whole time during our last camping trip in Savannah on Easter Weekend we are done with the tent.) We also donít need to purchase the tow vehicle right now, we are shopping now because I want to have time on my side, and not feel rushed. The axle ratio is 3.55, max tongue weight is 1,130, and it has the max tow package. The trailer says tongue weight is 585, which I know is unloaded, but I donít understand how some of you are getting to an estimate of 900 - 1000 lbs with a weight distribution hitch. I also donít see how I could possibly get close to the max weight on the trailer 2,490lbs seems really high.
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Old 04-08-2016, 11:25 AM   #8
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It was a wise decision to seek opinions prior to your purchases, so you will be informed.

A few thoughts;

When I was making a decision on a TV upgrade, I used a number of online trailer tow capacity calculators. They all painted a very similar picture; 1/2 tons are most suitable for TT of less than 5,000 lbs dry, 3/4 tons best for 5,000 to 8,000 lbs dry and anything heavier are best pulled with 1 tons using 1,000 lbs for passengers and misc items in the TT and TV. Yes, the calculators are conservative, but when it comes to safety, I wanted to be conservative.

A number of considerations need to be made as others have stated: TV payload, tow capacity of the TV, etc. But do not forget about braking and wheel base where bigger is better in both cases. Also frontal area comes into play and going to a FW literally forces you into a 1 ton diesel and possibly a dually if pin weight is high.

Yes, less capable TV can do the job, but over extended trips of more than a few hours, it can be very tiring and not very relaxing.

For reference my 2015 F260 6.2 gasser with 3.73 averaged 10 mpg on a 7,000 mile trip to the east coast pulling a shorter trailer but same shape as the bullet you are considering, and I was not light on the gas pedal.
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Old 04-08-2016, 11:31 AM   #9
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585 tongue weight is before anything is added.

Battery(s), propane and any storage forward of the axles will add to that figure. If the fresh water tank is up front and you fill it that's even more weight on the tongue.

It's always nice to see someone ask before purchase instead of the usual, I bought this trailer and I am using that vehicle to tow it, the dealer said I was good...

As stated, think future plans. I started with a 21' fiver that weight a whopping 3500 lbs. next came a 27 1/2' that weighed 7200 lbs. a year later I went to a 36' that weighed 11,500. All of these were towed with an F250 that had a 460 on steroids. In 2008 I decided to upgrade to present TV, and after a cross country trip in 2009, decided to down grade to present fiver. Point being, I started in 1989 and every time I got a new trailer I said "this is it"...yea right.

Good thing you have time to think things through, use that time to have some frank discussions with family. We've all been where your at, and if we can help you save money or frustration in the future it's all good.
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Old 04-08-2016, 12:28 PM   #10
mfifield01
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For tongue weight reference, mine is dry at 565lbs. Loaded it can get up to 860lbs.
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Old 04-08-2016, 12:32 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jreed456 View Post
The trailer says tongue weight is 585, which I know is unloaded, but I donít understand how some of you are getting to an estimate of 900 - 1000 lbs with a weight distribution hitch.
For comparison, the brochure rating for my trailer (2010 30RKS) is 530 lbs. I've scaled it at just over 1,000 lbs.

The brochure weights are useless for calculating anything. My trailer is ~8,200 lbs loaded. My tongue weight is right around 12%. That is numbers from a scale.

If your max weight is 7,585 then your tongue will be 12-15%, or 900 - 1100 lbs.

Now once I hook up my trailer bars, the weight added to the truck was around 800 lbs, with the WD hitch moving some of the weight back onto the trailer. My payload is just over 2,000 lbs for 1 2015 Sierra 1/2 ton trailer package.
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Old 04-08-2016, 01:03 PM   #12
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I agree with what most have said and speaking from experience be glad you are asking now. I am in no way part of the weight police club and don't believe that 1/2 tons aren't capable of towing more than a golf cart because it's simply not true. The new 1/2 tons are very capable of towing smaller TT but as mentioned their weakness is payload, especially when they are heavily optioned such as lariat trim levels, payload takes a major hit. We bought a 2014 F-150 CC ecoboost Max tow for our trailer and while pulling power was beyond capable the fact that our trailer weighed nearly 7,000lbs loaded and the truck weighed about 5,600lbs led to the simple principle that the tail could easily wag the dog. I did upgrade to LT tires from the garbage P rated tires and used a good WDH and those things did help quite a bit but in cross winds and passing semis physics would always win and just didn't feel comfortable for us. It was a very expensive lesson for us when I decided to upgrade to the 1 ton and yes I know it's overkill for our current trailer but believe me the towing experience and safety is night and day in every aspect. And yes in the future we plan on buying a larger trailer so we are poised for that time when it comes. I think that truck you are looking at would probably be sufficient for that trailer (although only the door sticker will confirm that) but I would really think about the future and any possibility of wanting bigger down the road and needing to upgrade your TV. Your wallet will thank you for planning ahead, I know I wish we would have. Good luck in your search and happy camping!
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:44 PM   #13
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That truck is fine for the trailer you're looking at. But as others have said, half tons Achilles heel is payload. We all started somewhere, tent, pop-up , TT......and lots of us end up in a fifth wheel. Just food for thought. It wouldn't be crazy if you bought a 3/4 or even 1 ton. Or even a diesel. I know it sounds silly to you right now. But alot of us have already upgraded trucks 2 or 3 times. Again, the truck you're looking at is okay for what you're doing. But if it's a Lariat, or Limited crew cab with a 6.2 expect the sticker on the door jamb to say 11-1200 lb carry capacity, which is not good.

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Old 04-08-2016, 04:12 PM   #14
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Most likely you will have to experience the same mistakes before you wise up. It's just how,it's done.

After the second or third try you will finally learn like we did that them cars with beds on the back? are for pulling boats and small trailer.

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Old 04-08-2016, 05:34 PM   #15
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12.5% of the fully loaded trailer is about 950 pounds. Would be interested in the payload. When I had a 150 the payload was 1700 which helped. If it is around 1300 I think you might have an issue. Good luck in your choices.
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Old 04-08-2016, 07:47 PM   #16
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I have a 2016 Bullet 269 rls and it is roughly the same specs. I pull it with a Sierra 5.3 crew cab with tow package just fine. It has a payload of 1571. On a steep grade it may bog down a little. I know I pretty much have maxed out my limits in what I can pull and carry but really have no issues and get around 9 mpg on the highway. Probably will upgrade when able but gotta pay for the TT first.


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Old 04-09-2016, 03:37 AM   #17
jreed456
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Thanks again for all the feedback. Dealer sent me a picture of the sticker. Payload is 1555.
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Old 04-09-2016, 05:22 AM   #18
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The real answer is you are going to be close. The only way to know for sure is to bring everything to the scales (which obviously is impossible since you don't have anything yet). We purchased an Ecoboost because we wanted something to tow a TT, but I couldn't justify a 3/4 or 1 ton. It's a daily driver and only gets used like a truck when we camp. You can get a stripped down F150 XLT with HD Payload and Max Tow Package, but they are very rare to find. I wanted a FX4 with all the bells and whistles, so we decided on a Max Tow Package. I was a maniac on the Internet and researched and researched and researched until I found exactly what I wanted that was still within the numbers. We purchased the truck over a year before we decided on a trailer. I would buy the truck because it seems like you want it. The decision is can you move on to a smaller / lighter trailer if the numbers don't add up? Smart move asking questions now and trying to make an informed decision, but I kind of expected that from a fellow South Jersey guy.
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Old 04-09-2016, 09:52 AM   #19
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JR, now you have the payload numbers. Plug in wt.s for all the family you will carry, stuff you will carry in the bed. Find out if the payload includes or excludes things on the vehicle like hitch, fuel. It may or may not. Likely should include all add ons the factory has added. Figure 800 to 900 lbs hitch wt. Than let us know what you come up with.
Some say they travel light, OK. I do not I enjoy camping/hunting/traveling with the RV and take more food/clothes/gear than needed to just get by. I travel with water because I use the toilet and sink, some do not.
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Old 04-09-2016, 11:21 AM   #20
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Thank you all for your help. Looking at everything we have decided to pass on this truck and keep looking for the right F250 or something similar. Just doesn't make sense to stress over the weight so much, especially if it's the same engine more or less. Thanks again, I will let you all know when we find the right truck. Glad I found this forum.
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