towing ability - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-17-2006, 03:02 AM   #1
frazier dee
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We have a 1991 Plymouth Voyager. The former owners pulled boats, but I've heard that was hard on it, and that's why we had to replace axels. Now we really want to buy a small trailer for the two of us. My question is do you experienced fiberglassers think our old rig can do this? Another factor is we sell our handcrafted candles, which is considerable weight. Another reason for needing a light weight home. We want to travel from Oregon to Texas and maybe beyond. I'm hoping for the right answer here....
thanks to all.
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Old 01-17-2006, 09:14 AM   #2
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Frazier...until other's jump in...check the owners manual for the Voyager. You'll find some of the information you need to know inside those pages.



By the way, Welcome To FiberglassRV...we're glad you're here Since you're an Oregonian, you may be interested in the Oregon Gathering coming up in July, click here for more information: Oregon Gathering

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Old 01-17-2006, 11:12 AM   #3
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I Googled the 1991 Plymouth Voyager and found references to Class I and Class II hitches, which are rated for 2000 and 3500 pounds - which suggests that the car is probably tow-rated high enough to be perfectly adequate for towing a 13ft. FGRV and a reasonable load, assuming the tow vehicle is in good running condition. You might check with UHaul for a tranny cooler, if you don't have one.
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Old 01-17-2006, 11:22 AM   #4
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I searched this forum and found at least one less than thrilled Voyager owner.

http://www.fiberglassrv.com/board/index.ph...7107&hl=voyager

It's a Paul Henning post. I don't know what he was towing. It was at one time a Scamp 13 Deluxe.
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Old 01-17-2006, 01:22 PM   #5
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Frazier, it might help bring out the experiences of others if you could supply a little more detail of what you mean by "replacing axles" in the Voyager. For instance, was this a problem with the rear axle (perhaps from hitch weight overload) or with the halfshafts (and their constant-velocity joints) which drive the front wheels? With a more specific situation, someone may be able to suggest ways to manage the problem.

As for cargo weight, I make a point of placing cargo towards the front of the load space within the van to properly distribute supension loads - the placement can make a significant difference.
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Old 01-18-2006, 05:19 AM   #6
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A few may tell you that you can tow with a dodge mini van. Many will tell you to forget it. You can do a search on the web about Dodge/Chrysler/Plymouth mini van transmissions. Here are a couple sites with eye opening reading: What Chrysler Doesn't want you to know., Edmunds.com, and consumeraffairs.com.

You must mean that you replaced the front drive axels. Those can fail and/or wear out if the rubber boots get torn and the joint gets contaminated. I don't think that just pulling a trailer will wear them out. There is not much wear if the boots remain sealed.

Pulling a boat is not comparable to pulling a travel trailer. Most of the resistance when moving is from the frontal area of the trailer. A boat has little frontal area and allows the air to flow around it. The travel trailer is like pulling a wall behind you.

It is very easy to overheat the mini van transmission. You can do it easily without overheating the engine. If the transmission starts "hunting" (down shifting and then up shifting repeatedly) it will be getting hot. If you try to run a speed just under the speed it hunts at, it will get hot. Heat kills transmissions.

I have had several caravans. I now refer to the transmission as a slushamatic. Dodge had to detune the transmission to reduce the amount of torgue generated internally.

Beyond the above info, you need to figure out how much the candles you want to carry weigh. That needs to be figured into the GVWR you will need the vehicle to be capable of handling. Each manufacturer establishes several "limits" for each of it's vehicles. Here is an excellant post about the info on another RV forum Manufacturer rating definitions.

Curtis
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Old 01-19-2006, 02:12 AM   #7
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The oldest Tow Guide for van than I have is 2000 which sez only 2,000 lbs with fourspeed auto trans and factory tow package -- More research is needed.

BTW, just because someone makes a receiver hitch rated for 5,000 lbs doesn't mean the vehichle can pull that -- My previous 82 Dodge, rated for 2,000 lbs had a 5,000 lb hitch...
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