96 Ranger V-6 3.0 extenbded cab (not splash) - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-08-2017, 07:40 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by John_M_1 View Post
If its only a 13 footer I 'd rather go backpacking or tent camping.
I tent camped my whole life, nothing wrong with it, but my 13' sure beats tent camping/sleeping on the ground as I get older. Not sure what your requirements in a camper are, but you might find a 13 out there that fits your needs/wants and would be a pretty easy pull. I host the Eggs on the Hiawassee Rally in May and you welcome to come to the open house on Saturday and tour the eggs.
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Old 03-08-2017, 07:41 AM   #30
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This topic has taken so many twists and turns, I'm losing track of that the original issue(s) were...

First, the fact that the responses about the towing capabilities of the Ranger are all over the map is par for the course. Few of us have actual experience with the exact vehicle, drivetrain, and trailer combination. On top of that, people have very different expectations about what constitutes "comfortable" towing.

Speaking only for myself, I agree with most of what Randy said. For shorter trips close to home in moderate terrain and low elevations, I believe a 4000 pound rated V6 Ranger will pull a 16' Scamp or Casita "satisfactorily" (whatever that means). Either will give you one large bed (Casita Liberty) or two smaller beds (all others- see their current websites for what is available, hasn't changed in many years) and a small bathroom. A Scamp is a few hundred pounds lighter than a comparable Casita, so that would be my first choice. In the end it may come down to what is available in decent condition.

Second, if you buy well and take care of it, a used molded fiberglass trailer is a relatively low-risk proposition. If it doesn't work out, you can likely sell it for what you paid, possibly more, depending on the timing of buying and selling. The one caveat is that you're entering the market when activity and prices tend to rise with the temperature.

I suspect the same would be true for the Ranger. Since it has low mileage, you're getting it for free, and you can do the work to bring it up to snuff yourself, I'm sure you could resell it for a decent price and get another commuter vehicle if the RV thing doesn't work out for you. But it won't be the Volvo, which brings me to...

Third, only you can decide if you are ready and willing to let go of this vehicle you are clearly attached to. In the end, it's not about logic, it's about the heart.
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:08 AM   #31
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I tent camped my whole life, nothing wrong with it, but my 13' sure beats tent camping/sleeping on the ground as I get older. Not sure what your requirements in a camper are, but you might find a 13 out there that fits your needs/wants and would be a pretty easy pull. I host the Eggs on the Hiawassee Rally in May and you welcome to come to the open house on Saturday and tour the eggs.
-Queen size bed

-Limited tow capabilities by Ranger

-limited funds

-storage issues

Not many degrees of freedom here. Maybe the tent is the best solution for now. Otherwise you could end up spending more time fixing than camping.
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:30 AM   #32
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You can't beat a pop up for the combination of sleeping space and light weight.
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:30 AM   #33
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-Queen size bed

-Limited tow capabilities by Ranger

-limited funds

-storage issues

Not many degrees of freedom here. Maybe the tent is the best solution for now. Otherwise you could end up spending more time fixing than camping.
I got the towing, funds and storage part. I was referring more specifically as to the features/options of the camper (headroom, bathroom, propane, appliances, converter, etc.)

I have seen some mods here and elsewhere to make the bed in a 13' Scamp/Boler wider, and one or two I believe were for queen size. If you are handy some of the bed mods are pretty simple. Pinterest is another good place to look, try searching there for "Scamp bed" or similar and you can see lots of interior photos showing the bed layouts.
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:34 AM   #34
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Maybe a small / med size used popup trailer would be a more practical choice . My daughter and her family went camping with us last Summer for 5 days . They purchased a used pop-up trailer and it worked well for her family of 6. Plus the popup trailer could be towed by their family vehicle with a 3500 lb tow rating.
Trying to fit 2 adults and 3 children comfortably in a 13 ,16, 17 ft FG trailer is an unattainable goal in my book
A FG trailer is not the answer in every situation.
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:47 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by Johnny M View Post

I have seen some mods here and elsewhere to make the bed in a 13' Scamp/Boler wider, and one or two I believe were for queen size. If you are handy some of the bed mods are pretty simple. Pinterest is another good place to look, try searching there for "Scamp bed" or similar and you can see lots of interior photos showing the bed layouts.
That's what I had in mind with the "more time fixing than camping" comment.
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Old 03-08-2017, 11:48 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by John_M_1 View Post
Have you driven North out of Chattanooga up over Monteagle with your rig? That's pretty characteristic of worst case scenario for steep on the east coast.
John,

You noted that "So far it seems that all the most negative comments regarding the ranger are from people out West. The Southern Appalachians are nothing like the Rocky Mountains or Cascades."

You can map route profiles on the web site Veloroutes.org. That site is designed for bicyclists, so it will provide you with the maximum grade in percent. It appears that the highway around Monteagle is about 9% grade.

I believe that 9% is much steeper than the two routes I cited in my reply to your earlier thread concerning the Escape 5.0. If you'd like to validate this, one route was between Seattle and Portland on I-5. The other concerned a stretch of Highway 16 near Gig Harbor. Neither of these routes is at high altitude nor in the Cascades.

Your question at the start of this thread was "What would be a trailer weight that it could COMFORTABLY pull?" One answer would be to look, as you have done, at the manufacturer's recommendations.

Beyond that, comfort is a very subjective standard. Some people can tow at low speeds on busy roads with what seems to be complete peace of mind. Personally, I like to be able to at least "nearly" keep up with traffic's normal pace as other drivers sometimes exhibit frustration that gets played out in their maneuvers on the road.

Other than that, I'll second (third?) Shelby and Steve in the mention of a pop-up trailer. While I don't know all your parameters, the tent versions do offer a tremendous amount of room in a very lightweight package with low wind resistance. Similarly, the A-frame (hard shell) ones also seem to serve a lot of folks very well.

I'll also second Steve in his note that "If you wait till everything is perfect , a lot of good memories will be never happen". Good luck in your quest here.

Regards,
Mike
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Old 03-08-2017, 12:02 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by Raz View Post
-Queen size bed

-Limited tow capabilities by Ranger

-limited funds

-storage issues

Not many degrees of freedom here. Maybe the tent is the best solution for now. Otherwise you could end up spending more time fixing than camping.
Attached is my preferred method of camping. 10 miles down the trail swinging from a hammock. Unfortunately my wife won't come along.

I'm a design engineer and I solve problems for a living. You are correct about too many constraints for a good solution. Actually last night I came up with a pretty good solution. Although, I'm not sure I want to go that route because it will take a good deal of effort.

Drop a Ford 5.0L V-8 and transmission (there are zillions of them out there) into the Ranger and sell the 3.0L V6 (lots of people want a low miles Vulcan V-6) that is taken out to pay for it. There is actually a kit available to do this for a few hundred dollars. Beef up the suspension and brakes a bit. This could all be done quite inexpensively if I do my own work (I'm a pretty decent mechanic - that's why I've got a 20 year old volvo still chugging along). Not having room in the driveway is still a problem until I could get the Ranger in service.
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Old 03-08-2017, 12:07 PM   #38
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If a camper is for only a once or twice a year vacation, and considering the OP's space and storage limitations and number of people to accommodate sleeping, maybe the best solution is to fix up the free truck a little, sell it, and rent a Cruise America class C motor home that easily will sleep 5. Otherwise for a family of 4 or more a pop-up is a good solution. We owned one since 1977, until last summer when we gave it to our son for his young family of 5.
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Old 03-08-2017, 12:08 PM   #39
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Somewhere in this thread must be the answer you were looking for when you started it.
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Old 03-08-2017, 01:05 PM   #40
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Actually, I'm not overthinking it - I haven't told the whole story. I live in a suburb with covenants and have no place to park the extra truck which means I have to get rid of my 20 year old Volvo station wagon. The wagon gets 30 MPG and I drive nearly 100 miles a day to and from work. The Truck gets 24 or so.
Information is important the decision is yours in the end. I see on allot of lists people buying a nice trailer they never get to use it because of sudden health issues, deaths etc. you never know whats gonna happen tomorrow. I am a just go for it person sometimes it works out sometimes not. Getting there is half the fun better to live life than have no life at all.

Looking back on your life... Remember when has a much Better ring to my ears that I wish I would have.
But that's just me ...

Good luck with your decision.
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Old 03-08-2017, 01:05 PM   #41
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OK folks. Thanks for all of the comments. Maybe I'll see you out there sometime.
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Old 03-08-2017, 06:15 PM   #42
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Somewhere in this thread must be the answer you were looking for when you started it.
Thanks Glenn!
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