Trailer Weights in the Real World - Page 8 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-23-2011, 12:27 PM   #99
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Name: carrie
Trailer: 83 Burro (for sale)
Iowa
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Originally Posted by Robin G View Post
First, Welcome to the forum............. Your smart to question, though others will tell you they do it, you should be able to. It's not something I would advise. Your very smart to study before hand.
Thanks for the reply! We would be the latter... just a couple who wants to travel the midwest a few days at a time. We've been to Europe for a week with just carry-ons, so I'd hope would could manage the same in a trailer! Our problem may be that we enjoy micro/craft beers, so we could easily come home with a case or two.

Unfortunately, Chad eliminated the 77 Trillium based on the weight issue and age. Now I'm trying to steer him towards a 2004 Tab about seven hours north of us (no one sells little trailers close to us!!) that's rated about 1300. It also costs twice what the Trillium does, so....

I'm curious about trailer brakes (do many trailers come with them already? can those be added by a good DIYer? how much weight do they add on their own?) and transmission coolers (again, can a person who has brought many a car back from the dead install this himself?). I know this doesn't *increase* towing capacity, but they make the vehicle "suffer" less, correct? Anyone have any thoughts on return on investment for these items??

Thanks again... We've learned so much from this forum... We appreciate the expertise provided here!

~carrie
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Old 08-23-2011, 01:20 PM   #100
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radloffc View Post
T

I'm curious about trailer brakes (do many trailers come with them already?


Yes....


can those be added by a good DIYer?

I believe so!


how much weight do they add on their own?) and transmission coolers (again, can a person who has brought many a car back from the dead install this himself?). I know this doesn't *increase* towing capacity, but they make the vehicle "suffer" less, correct?

As for how much weight a brakes add? Hmmmmm, not a clue . I think if your DH is handy enough to resurrect a dead car, he should be able to figure installation.

Not "suffer" less but more control of the weight your pulling. Which I guess would make the car "suffer" less





Anyone have any thoughts on return on investment for these items??

Return on investment? Well trailer brakes could save both the trailer, the vehicle and perhaps your life! I say it's well worth the investment.



~carrie
As for the Tab, I think they actually weigh more, but you could easily check with Tab owners, I am sure they have a forum as we do here with Glass eggs. Don't take the posted weight of any trailer as gospel. Weigh yourself (that is why this Post was originated) .......... My Casita say's it weights 2300 range, but in actuality it weighted in at a beefy 2800 pounds, empty...... Posted weights are often before ad on's are added, such as fridge, air conditioner, etc...........
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Old 08-23-2011, 01:28 PM   #101
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Originally Posted by radloffc View Post
T(no one sells little trailers close to us!!) that's rated about 1300.

~carrie

As far as what we call, Glass, Egg's, etc............ Yeah no one close to you selling them. If your looking for new (which I doubt, due to weight limit's) it's worth the trip to any one of the manufactures. But highly suggest for you to keep searching. The thing with these little wonders is they are worth the wait/search. I have actually seen several "for sale's" in the used market in Iowa recently. I will see if I can pull the Ad's up for you...... Some people search for years to find the perfect one. That's part of the allure of them. Hang in there, don't sell yourself short so quickly. You never know what FALL/WINTER brings.



Ok, I went and checked and one is sold but both ad's I was referring to were for 17ft'er's.


I still think it's worth searching, craigs list, back yards (lot's of us have been known to walk up to a door and knock to find out if they are interested in selling). But keep in mind, the perfect Egg may not be in your town. Many of us have driven for day's to pick up just the right trailer. Again, it's the allure....... LOL.......
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:16 PM   #102
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Bill in Pittsburgh

We have the Scamp 13 with weight of 1420 hitch 200 total 1620.

We do not have air conditioner, ice box, refrigerator, furnace or water tanks.

We do have a group 27 battery and a 20 lb propane tank. We also have additional overhead cabinets front and rear, a fantastic fan, and screen door.

I would prefer group 24 battery and 10 lb fiberglass propane tank to lower the hitch weight. Otherwise I wouldn't change anything. Scamp does not have 10 lb fiberglass propane tanks.

Also our Scamp was pre factory fire. The 13 is now a bit taller and perhaps has a different frame? It probably weighs a bit more. Our weight was with all we carry for a 3-4 week trip. Mostly clothes and sleeping gear. Only carry food and drinking water for a couple of days.

Hope this helps. Nancy
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Old 08-23-2011, 06:42 PM   #103
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radloffc View Post
I'm curious about trailer brakes (do many trailers come with them already? can those be added by a good DIYer? how much weight do they add on their own?) and transmission coolers (again, can a person who has brought many a car back from the dead install this himself?). I know this doesn't *increase* towing capacity, but they make the vehicle "suffer" less, correct? Anyone have any thoughts on return on investment for these items?
I just found TAB Owner’s Club – T@B and T@DA Travel Trailer Owners and Admirers. I'll bet your questions specific to the T@B can be answered there. I do know that T@Bs come with "surge" brakes which do not require a brake controller in your tow vehicle. Many 13' trailers only offer brakes as an option. If you're buying used they generally do not have them. The axle must have the backing plate for the brakes to bolt up to for retrofitting to be done easily. If there's no backing plate, then the whole axle must be replaced. If your person is as skilled as you say, then adding a transmission cooler will be relatively easy to do. That will compensate for the extra heat that the stress of towing will generate in your transmission.

I generally keep a vehicle until it dies of a very advanced age, so I cannot address the return on investment question.
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Old 08-23-2011, 10:05 PM   #104
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"Originally Posted by radloffc
I'm curious about trailer brakes (do many trailers come with them already?

Yes....

can those be added by a good DIYer?
I believe so! "


A word of caution regarding adding brakes to some of the smaller trailers - how easy and how much it will cost depends on what axel is on the trailer - some of the older axels on the smaller 13' & 14' trailers do not have the piece on them for mounting the brakes so adding brakes may also mean changing the axle........ not something the average DIY wants to take on.
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:05 AM   #105
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The @Tab we looked at weight was greater than our boler?
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:28 AM   #106
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I have the 13 scamp #18 that weighed in at 1950 lbs. The tounge weight is about right for the weight, a little over 11% of total, but due to a full 30# propane tank and a two person dinette in front. We had 7 gallons of water in the tank, clothes for hot and cold weather, food for 4 days and 100 plus pounds of extra weight from wood due to the remodel. We wanted to load the trailer heavy to see how our TV would be on our first long trip. I figure #2000 will be around the max we will have, and our last trip to Jasper/ Banff went great with this weight. I am surprised on how weight adds up on these trailers.
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Old 08-27-2011, 08:57 AM   #107
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Back in the 70's we had a Compact Jr. It weighed 850 lb plus tongue weight of about 100 lb. dry and empty. However, this was really a bare bones rig, no insulation, small ice box, 2 burner cook top, not even a porta potty. It also had a frame that was designed for that 850 pounds with little to spare! Don't ask me how I know (DAMHIK). :>(

But it was pure luxury for us who were used to back packs, Svea gas stove, and a small nylon mountaineering tent. It kept us safe and dry and we visited 44 states over the several year we had it, pulled by a Peugeot 404 station wagon with a 1.6 litre engine.

Would we go back? Never! Our Scamp is sumptuous compared to the Compact. Our diesel Blazer gets better fuel economy and performs better towing than the Peugeot performed solo, hands down! Yep, the Scamp outfitted as ours is weighs in at 2850 lb loaded (we carry only 1 gal of water and our grey water is only about 2 1/2 gal max) about 3-times what the Compact weighed with its gas/electric refrigerator, 4 burner range with oven, gas fireplace and other amenities.

We have toyed with the idea of upgrading to, perhaps, a Bigfoot 17 or 19. While our TV would pull it fine, the added weight, added width and less aerodynamic shape would penalize our fuel usage by about 10 percent. Worth it? I don't know. I'm sure it would be a step up in comfort level with insulation, better seating, shower, water tankage and more places to stash stuff.

What is so great is the options we have. It sure is a wonderful age we live in, with all the choices available to us!
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Old 08-27-2011, 10:21 AM   #108
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"Yep, the Scamp outfitted as ours is weighs in at 2850 lb loaded (we carry only 1 gal of water and our grey water is only about 2 1/2 gal max) "

Loren

Your's appears to be the heaviest Scamp 16 in the list. Is that because it's a deluxe. What does all the wood add in weight?

I was also curious what mileage you get with your diesel Blazer when towing?
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Old 08-27-2011, 10:47 AM   #109
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Compact Jr.

I hope we feel the same as you after getting our Scamp. Our little pop-up appears to have similar features to your Compact, excepting that we had an insulated top and box. We, however, love that little trailer due to ease of towing. Probably why we have kept it for 30 years and towed it more than 200K miles. The main convenience we miss in our pop-up is the inability to jump in with out setting up to eat, rest or have access to our supplies. We are willing to give up some weight for these conveniences. I do, however, enjoy small and sporty cars. I know impossible, but would love to be able to tow with my Miata. What really bothers me is there are plenty of fuel efficient vehicles capable of pulling a 2000# trailer, but the manufacturers do not tow rate them. Keep in mind, that in the 30s, 40s, and 50s, people towed 4000# trailers with 3000# cars that had 120 horsepower and terrible brakes. While I understand you really enjoy your current tug, it would be far bigger than I desire to drive. Even my 2001 Jeep Cherokee feels like an overgrown pig to me.(Though, I think it to be better than most other tugs I have explored.
We cannot wait to get our Scamp!





Quote:
Originally Posted by Loren G. Hedahl View Post
Back in the 70's we had a Compact Jr. It weighed 850 lb plus tongue weight of about 100 lb. dry and empty. However, this was really a bare bones rig, no insulation, small ice box, 2 burner cook top, not even a porta potty. It also had a frame that was designed for that 850 pounds with little to spare! Don't ask me how I know (DAMHIK). :>(

But it was pure luxury for us who were used to back packs, Svea gas stove, and a small nylon mountaineering tent. It kept us safe and dry and we visited 44 states over the several year we had it, pulled by a Peugeot 404 station wagon with a 1.6 litre engine.

Would we go back? Never! Our Scamp is sumptuous compared to the Compact. Our diesel Blazer gets better fuel economy and performs better towing than the Peugeot performed solo, hands down! Yep, the Scamp outfitted as ours is weighs in at 2850 lb loaded (we carry only 1 gal of water and our grey water is only about 2 1/2 gal max) about 3-times what the Compact weighed with its gas/electric refrigerator, 4 burner range with oven, gas fireplace and other amenities.

We have toyed with the idea of upgrading to, perhaps, a Bigfoot 17 or 19. While our TV would pull it fine, the added weight, added width and less aerodynamic shape would penalize our fuel usage by about 10 percent. Worth it? I don't know. I'm sure it would be a step up in comfort level with insulation, better seating, shower, water tankage and more places to stash stuff.

What is so great is the options we have. It sure is a wonderful age we live in, with all the choices available to us!
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Old 08-27-2011, 10:59 AM   #110
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Originally Posted by radloffc View Post
We're considering purchasing a 1977 13' Trillium. Much of the literature said it's less than 1000 lb, so we thought it'd be ideal for our needs. After reading this forum, I'm scared that we'll never find a good trailer at an acceptable weight. We have a 2005 Pontiac Vibe (aka Toyota matrix) with a towing capacity of 1500. Lightweight trailers are so rare around here, but we don't want to get a different car just to tow a trailer a few weekends/year. The trailer is about two hours away, so it's not like we could swing by and get it weighed ourselves. I'm getting so frustrated with this search. If we can't get some good answers, I fear we'll have to suffer in a teensy teardrop, and I do NOT want to do that!
Hi, Carrie

With a tow limit of 1500 lbs, you'd be wise to limit your search to trailers with advertised weights of 1,000 lbs or less.
Those are bare-bones curb weights that don't even include the (100 lbs or so) added by the propane bottle and battery most of us consider essential.
I think it unlikely that you'll find a newer fiberglass trailer in the 1000 lb. range. The '77 Trillium 13' is a lot lighter than its newer descendants and may be your best bet if it's still available.
And if your 1500 lb. tow limit requires brakes, I'm pretty sure the '77 Trillium already has them. This is a major asset, even if the brakes are in bad shape. Replacement on the Trillium wheel is cheap and easy, and can be done with parts from your local auto parts store.

Best of luck in your search!

Francesca
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Old 08-27-2011, 01:44 PM   #111
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Same as us

Thank you for this information. Sounds as though your trailer is equipped and packed much as we would. This is probable the most definitive answer to my question thus far. (Not to say the other information I have received isn't useful) We do want the front dinette. Scamp told us this is only available with the Deluxe wood interior model. I hope this does not add more weight. Seems odd or just plain uncompromising that Scamp is unwilling to provide a front dinette in a regular model. They said their molds differ. I really would not care if the front was finished in the deluxe wood finish and the rest of the trailer was different in order to get a front dinette and to save weight. I can not imagine that it is not possible to mix and match interiors as I doubt if the 13 foot trailer shell differs for each model.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nancy View Post
Bill in Pittsburgh

We have the Scamp 13 with weight of 1420 hitch 200 total 1620.

We do not have air conditioner, ice box, refrigerator, furnace or water tanks.
ped
We do have a group 27 battery and a 20 lb propane tank. We also have additional overhead cabinets front and rear, a fantastic fan, and screen door.

I would prefer group 24 battery and 10 lb fiberglass propane tank to lower the hitch weight. Otherwise I wouldn't change anything. Scamp does not have 10 lb fiberglass propane tanks.

Also our Scamp was pre factory fire. The 13 is now a bit taller and perhaps has a different frame? It probably weighs a bit more. Our weight was with all we carry for a 3-4 week trip. Mostly clothes and sleeping gear. Only carry food and drinking water for a couple of days.

Hope this helps. Nancy
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Old 08-29-2011, 04:27 PM   #112
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It would be interesting if the trailer spreadsheet also showed the trailer's tow vehicle.
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