New tow vehicle - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-09-2020, 06:15 AM   #1
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New tow vehicle

Our Expedition died on the way back from South Padre Island. It got us home, but it kept wanting to die at stops. The car repair guys recommended replacing the Expedition, rather than buying a new engine for it. They thought maybe, despite it being basically a Ford F150, that our Bigfoot Silver Cloud was too much for it. So, while a pickup was in the plans, just not now, we had no choice. So, we bought a 2018 Dodge RAM 2500 Tradesman with less than 4000 miles on it. Boy, does it fill our driveway! I need a step stool to get into it. It should help our trips to Pike's Peak (Or should I say our 2 trips to Pike's Peak, Iowa and Colorado) and Nova Scotia this summer. I finally have my MOPAR with a Hemi engine. I watch Overhaulin.

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Old 01-09-2020, 08:41 AM   #2
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Looks beautiful! Iíve noticed all the discussions about tow vehicles for the BF25 center on 1/2T vs. 3/4T. Bottom line seems to be a half ton is doable but marginal and depends on whether it has things like HD towing and payload packages. Your BF28 Silver Cloud is even heavier, so I think you made the right call.

A shorter bed would have reduced the overall length a bit, but you have to take what you can find.

Jealous of your trip to Nova Scotia. We took a short driving trip in a rental car last June and loved it. Hope to go back with the trailer and spend more time some day! Donít miss Quebec City going in or out.
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Old 01-09-2020, 08:56 AM   #3
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Get some running boards and forget the stool. I got running boards on my new truck because I figured they would protect the paint in parking lots from car doors. Now that I have learned the correct way to use them they are a great addition.
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Old 01-09-2020, 08:57 AM   #4
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Our Nova Scotia trip is on my bucket list. We are going to see the Chapin family concert (huge Harry Chapin fans) at the Steve Chapin campground, Ovens Natural Park.

Quebec City maybe another time. We have been there for our honeymoon, so many years ago. I was a French major and teacher, but I could not understand their French. Later I heard from someone from Paris, that a she cannot understand their language either, as it dates from a few centuries ago.


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Old 01-09-2020, 08:58 AM   #5
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Get some running boards and forget the stool. I got running boards on my new truck because I figured they would protect the paint in parking lots from car doors. Now that I have learned the correct way to use them they are a great addition.

Running boards are in the works. The stool is temporary.
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Old 01-09-2020, 09:19 AM   #6
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Great looking truck . Radco sell a folding rear step for your truck .
Not cheap ( $250) but well built . It’s a great help for getting stuff out of or you into the bed of the truck
The notion spread by the FG trailers manufacturers that all FG trailers can be towed by a Ford Pinto is pure BS . Your example with your Bigfoot shows that even a 1/2 ton truck is often not adequate for the task in every instance.
My 1/2 ton truck has a stated towing limit of 11,500 lbs on paper . After 10,000 miles of towing with the truck I now know that number is pure BS
Congratulation on your new truck , I hope it serves you well !!
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Old 01-09-2020, 01:19 PM   #7
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I just got the wheel to wheel boards for my 3500. Makes it much easier to reach in the bed.
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Old 01-10-2020, 09:30 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by CindyL View Post
Our Nova Scotia trip is on my bucket list. We are going to see the Chapin family concert (huge Harry Chapin fans) at the Steve Chapin campground, Ovens Natural Park.

CindyL
Looks like a great combo!
I didn't realize the Chapins had a campground, don't forget to bring bananas, about 30,000 pounds should do!
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Old 01-10-2020, 11:59 AM   #9
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Looks like a great combo!

I didn't realize the Chapins had a campground, don't forget to bring bananas, about 30,000 pounds should do!


So is the Tradesman a plain wrapper vehicle? I have a Ram 1500 that I tow my Escape19 with. I had a tonneau cover over the bed. Then I replaced it with a cab high topper because I wanted lockable taller storage. The bonus is that the topper gained me almost 3 MPGs towing. I had no idea I was gonna get that when I bought the topper.
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Old 01-10-2020, 12:08 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Radar1 View Post
Looks like a great combo!
I didn't realize the Chapins had a campground, don't forget to bring bananas, about 30,000 pounds should do!
https://www.ovenspark.com (Steve Chapin's campground)

LOL! I do have a t-shirt somewhere that says, "Harry, it sucks!"

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Old 01-10-2020, 12:10 PM   #11
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So is the Tradesman a plain wrapper vehicle? I have a Ram 1500 that I tow my Escape19 with. I had a tonneau cover over the bed. Then I replaced it with a cab high topper because I wanted lockable taller storage. The bonus is that the topper gained me almost 3 MPGs towing. I had no idea I was gonna get that when I bought the topper.
It is marketed as a working man's truck, so it does not have all the bells and whistles, like heated seats. I never use the heated seats in my Beetle, so not a biggie.

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Old 01-10-2020, 03:36 PM   #12
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And now we have new running boards on the pickup, so both of us can get in without step stools. The camper and the new tow vehicle are now covered in preparation for the coming ice and snow storm.

And, we are registered for the Steve Chapin Nova Scotia campground! Yeah!

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Old 01-10-2020, 07:28 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by CindyL View Post
The car repair guys recommended replacing the Expedition, rather than buying a new engine for it. They thought maybe, despite it being basically a Ford F150, that our Bigfoot Silver Cloud was too much for it. So, while a pickup was in the plans, just not now, we had no choice.
I remember years back when my Dad's TV died. He had the biggest grin you ever saw because that meant he was going to replace it with a much larger one!

Enjoy the new truck, it looks great.
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Old 01-16-2020, 05:58 AM   #14
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Get the extended warranty on the Dodge
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Old 01-16-2020, 06:24 AM   #15
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Get the extended warranty on the Dodge
We did get the extended warranty. Next comes a new topper. Kevin is having it ordered today.

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Old 01-16-2020, 07:54 AM   #16
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I bought a ARE cap for my Ram quad cab pickup. The cap dealer tells them the paint code so it matches the truck. Mine is carpet lined and I ordered the optional rails for a roof rack. One thing I wish I had ordered was the side windows that flip up from the outside so small things near the front of the bed could be reached easier. I wouldn't let them wire up the brake light on the camper because I didn't want them tapping into wiring. I later found out that there is a dedicated wire in the wire harness under the truck that is for the cap brake light. To make it easier to get in the back of the truck I bought a folding stool from Harbor Freight ($20) and since we carry some stuff in milk crates and plastic tubs I have a hook tool that I can grab a tub with and pull it to the back. It was actually intended for releasing the 5th wheel on tractor trailers but works good for reaching stuff, and also as a campfire poker. Our son saw the hook tool and had me make one for him. Bikes are carried upright on fork mounts that are bolted to a piece of plywood.
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Old 01-16-2020, 08:52 AM   #17
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We are getting a Lakeland Voyager cap And we are getting racks for our canoe and kayaks. We will keep your suggestions in mind. I did order a step stool that could be used for reaching things, but I am fighting with the Chinese company that sells it, as I never received it. Frankly, I think FedEx delivered it to the wrong house. I need a stool with the truck myself. That first step is a killer.

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Old 01-16-2020, 09:00 AM   #18
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At the rear of your truck on the drivers side you will find a single capped off wire
in a wiring bundle . That wire is for the brake light on your cap / topper
I ran a separate set a wires from the battery to the topper interior light
that way you can have lights inside the topper without turning on the head lights
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Old 01-16-2020, 11:00 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by mary and bob View Post
I bought a ARE cap for my Ram quad cab pickup. The cap dealer tells them the paint code so it matches the truck. Mine is carpet lined and I ordered the optional rails for a roof rack. One thing I wish I had ordered was the side windows that flip up from the outside so small things near the front of the bed could be reached easier. I wouldn't let them wire up the brake light on the camper because I didn't want them tapping into wiring. I later found out that there is a dedicated wire in the wire harness under the truck that is for the cap brake light. To make it easier to get in the back of the truck I bought a folding stool from Harbor Freight ($20) and since we carry some stuff in milk crates and plastic tubs I have a hook tool that I can grab a tub with and pull it to the back. It was actually intended for releasing the 5th wheel on tractor trailers but works good for reaching stuff, and also as a campfire poker. Our son saw the hook tool and had me make one for him. Bikes are carried upright on fork mounts that are bolted to a piece of plywood.
If you go with ARE, definitely order the interior carpet lining. I didn't, and the rough finish of the fiberglass was a PIA for the life of the box. I was still getting fiberglass splinters 2 years after adding it. I liked the opening side windows for getting stuff in & out of the front, but they leaked.
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Old 01-16-2020, 12:54 PM   #20
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If you go with ARE, definitely order the interior carpet lining. I didn't, and the rough finish of the fiberglass was a PIA for the life of the box. I was still getting fiberglass splinters 2 years after adding it. I liked the opening side windows for getting stuff in & out of the front, but they leaked.
We are getting Lakeland, but I think it comes with a free lining right now. It will be a month before we get it though.

Cindy
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