MPG when towing Lil Snoozy? Must know... - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-10-2013, 12:48 PM   #1
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MPG when towing Lil Snoozy? Must know...

I have read 2 or 3 Lil Snoozy owners' comments about fuel economy when towing. They were all 15 MPG or a bit better, if I recall correctly. Is anyone getting worse than 15?

Why does it matter so much to me, you might wonder? Well, I need to buy a new trailer this summer to haul cargo for work. I tow my current trailer 20,000 miles per year for work. It's a 6x12 enclosed aluminum box (about 16' with tongue). I drive 60-65 mph and average 11 MPG. The Snoozy (totally empty) gives me 6.5'x 11.5' of floor space, which is slightly more than I have now in the 6x12. I can't go smaller, BTW, I need all of that floor space. IF the Snoozy would give me a MPG boost from 11 to 15, the fuel savings would pay back the additional cost of the Snoozy vs buying another boxy cargo trailer, in about 4 to 5 years.

When you have to tow a trailer 20K miles every year, the fuel really adds up. That's why I'd like to obtain as much data as I can on actual Snoozy owners' MPG results, preferably coupled with typical towing speed. So if you have a Snoozy (or know someone who does) and have some numbers to tell, please post them here.

Maybe a Snoozy owner would be willing to ask over on the owners' club for me, too?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 03-10-2013, 02:31 PM   #2
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Mike,

I tow my Snoozy with a 2011 F150 4X4. When on the highway, I get 15-16 mph driving at speeds of 55-60 mph.

Hope this helps!
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Old 03-10-2013, 02:37 PM   #3
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I posted for some helpful input for you Mike on the website.

Topic: MPG stats for the Snoozy

I haven't picked mine up yet, but will post findings when I have them.
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Old 03-10-2013, 02:47 PM   #4
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It might help if you mention what your TV is and what you get when not towing and then, as the TV,s are a huge variable, you will at least know a differential number, i.e., what it costs in MPG to tow for that TV.

But expecting a 33% increase just from wind reduction might be asking a bit much. How about a simple wind deflector or a nose piece for your trailer as most OTR truckers use? It would be a lot cheaper.
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Old 03-10-2013, 03:12 PM   #5
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To many variables without the input. Should you have a 6 cylinder, you may get better mileage with a V8 or vice versa, Tires to low a pressure, you may get better mileage with the right pressure or over inflated pressure, driving at 55 mph may give you better mileage than 56 mph. The coefficient of the tow and tag along has impact. The weight of the tag along. They even sell an air deflector to put on pickups to route the air stream up and over the tag along. A clean air filter or one of those high volume air filters may make a difference. The right kind of oil in the engine and running gears.

I think it is one of those things that you just have to take a chance on.
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Old 03-10-2013, 03:50 PM   #6
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To add some info as requested: my Highlander 3.5L v6 gets 23 mpg highway when not towing. I did get 14 mpg with a Burro 17' widebody, before I sold it 2 years ago. So I have reason to be optimistic about a MPG improvement with a Snoozy.

BTW, I would not need any rear door mods. The door they offer now would be fine. I know they'll sell an empty shell, but I haven't gotten a price since they first began production.
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Old 03-10-2013, 03:52 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
It might help if you mention what your TV is and what you get when not towing and then, as the TV,s are a huge variable, you will at least know a differential number, i.e., what it costs in MPG to tow for that TV.

But expecting a 33% increase just from wind reduction might be asking a bit much. How about a simple wind deflector or a nose piece for your trailer as most OTR truckers use? It would be a lot cheaper.
I already need to buy a new trailer. I'm looking for info that helps me decide what type to get. A nose cone might help, or it might not... I've never been able to pin down any real data on that, only claims by a mfr of cones.
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Old 03-10-2013, 03:53 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by ColoRockiesFan View Post
Mike,

I tow my Snoozy with a 2011 F150 4X4. When on the highway, I get 15-16 mph driving at speeds of 55-60 mph.

Hope this helps!
Thanks, Lisa! It does help. This is the kind of info I'm hoping for in this thread.
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Old 03-10-2013, 05:01 PM   #9
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Mike, not to say anything negative about the Snoozy but don't most of the fiberglass trailers provide the 6x12 floor space you require.

Also those trailers have very defined mpgs with numerous tow vehicles. 11 mpg is in the range of most newer motorhomes and 15 is in the range of Sprinter Vans.
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Old 03-10-2013, 11:02 PM   #10
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Mike, not to say anything negative about the Snoozy but don't most of the fiberglass trailers provide the 6x12 floor space you require.
Not really. I looked at a 16' Scamp that had been stripped out, and it would have been really tight due to the shape. Plus, without the seat supports and cabinets the shell is really too weak and wobbly. Eggcamper and Casita, same thing... Jim Palmer at Eggcamper said the bulkheads and stuff were not removable without compromising shell strength. Not sure about Escape.

The Lil Snoozy is built differently. The shell is self supporting and needs nothing inside it to help out.
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Old 03-10-2013, 11:33 PM   #11
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Escape interior fittings do provide structure.
So, I'm curious how Lil Snoozy achieves structure without systems that the others use.
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Old 03-11-2013, 01:13 AM   #12
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Escape interior fittings do provide structure.
So, I'm curious how Lil Snoozy achieves structure without systems that the others use.
It is pretty straightforward really - and all about stiffness.

Most molded fiberglass trailers use a single skin of fiberglass formed in the mold from either (a) chopped strands of fiberglass in resin, or (b) fiberglass cloth in resin. The resin holds the fiberglass in place and provides stiffness, but almost no additional strength. Now unless the fiberglass is very thick and heavy, the resulting structure still isn't very stiff. It can be easily deformed and that is why these trailers rely on interior supports and even the furniture to keep the structure from deforming under even moderate loads. We have all heard about the problem of roof mounted air conditioners causing roof deformation unless additional supports are built in.

The above is a very simple old technology - of the two, the fiberglass cloth method is better (generally stronger and lighter too as less resin is normally used).

The Snoozy uses a more modern method of construction - sandwich construction. Here the structure is composed of an inner fiberglass skin, a foam core, and an outer fiberglass skin. It is still made in a mold. This method is often compared to an I-Beam (a top and bottom surface separated by a web or core). The loads are carried by the skins (one in tension and one in compression - with both being held in place by the core). With a foam core structure, you get the stiffness (not strength) of the thicker structure without the weight - so the Snoozy is self supporting and doesn't rely on interior supports or furniture to hold itself up.

Another good example is corrugated cardboard - two paper skins separated by paper corrugations. Its all thin paper, but the thickness provided by the corrugated core provides much additional stiffness.

That is basically it - There is a whole standard technical explanation with equations, diagrams, etc.., but the above is pretty much it.

Sandwich construction has been used for years so it is very well established. In the boating world, pretty much everything is now sandwich construction.

Why doesn't every trailer manufacturer use it - well, a few other trailers have used this system - most notably the Bonair Oxygen which used a honeycomb core. But generally, it costs more to set up, it is costly to make changes, it takes a little more expertise to operate, and the parts cost more to make because the cores used can be pricey (it is generally a special structural foam, not cheap house insulation foam). And of course there are a few problem areas unique to sandwich construction - including core delamination and more costly repairs if they are required. Sometimes too, stiffness can be your enemy - a very flexible shell allows it to take a few hits without breaking - it just flexes under the load and either rebounds of can be pushed back into place.

If it sounds like I am a fan of the Snoozy - well sort of. I like the construction but I can't figure out why it weighs so much given the weight savings its manufacturing method should produce. Similarly, I'm not a fan of its shape - it looks aerodynamic, but as has been commented on before, any trailer with well rounded front corners (pretty much all eggs) will do as well aerodynamically (a great book on this subject if you like a bit [well a lot] of math is Aerodynamics of Road Vehicles edited by Wolf-Heinrich Hucho - $100 well spent). But its great to see Snoozy doing its own thing and offering a unique solution.
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Old 03-11-2013, 01:21 AM   #13
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So, kinda like my Old Town Otter canoe ( except it was heavy ). Wrap it around a rock and you didn't want to paddle it any more. Fibreglass may not be pretty after an incident like that, but at least you could fix it.
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Old 03-11-2013, 02:14 PM   #14
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2010 -f150 -4.6 V8 4door crew cab most fo the time the mpg is 15.6 -16.2 60 to 65 mph towing 19 to 20.5 solo one time towing i got 14 in the rocky mts. and one time 18.5 in south tx . hope this helps .
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