Ford E150 Cargo Van - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-26-2011, 04:48 PM   #15
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Trailer: 2011 Casita Liberty Deluxe with 2005 Chevy Express tow vehicle
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Sharon - Sweeeeet!!!
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Old 03-26-2011, 05:36 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by honda03842 View Post
Interestingly they do tow with it in Europe.

As well just about anything can tow a 13 foot trailer, particulaarly one with brakes, even a Prius. hmmmm.

Norm
I meant to put in that post that only in the USA that the transit has no towing options.... The Attorneys would probably have a field day if someone caused a casualty towing with that vehicle.
Joe
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Old 03-26-2011, 05:44 PM   #17
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Sue, a full size van will have rear wheel drive and a minivan will have front wheel drive. The Casita's tongue weight will be fairly heavy, so a full size van with rear wheel drive (which is what you are considering) will be better; the tongue might be too heavy for a minivan's hitch and might take too much weight off the front drive wheels, reducing traction and wearing the tires out faster due to slippage.

As for 4 wheel drive (or all wheel drive), you probably don't need it unless you are going to be driving a lot on snowy roads or doing a bunch of offroading. If you want to drive down a bunch of rough trails, 4WD is great. I personally love the all wheel drive on my Highlander as I have to be on the road for my business even if the weather is nasty. AWD is always 'on' and sending power to the wheels that need it, so it can help maintain traction on any road if one wheel slips a bit. 4WD is different; one usually cannot drive on dry pavement with 4WD engaged because it can tear up the drive train... the system locks the wheels together so they spin at the same rate, which is bad when going around a curve... but it's the best for going through deep mud and through shallow creek beds, like a Jeep. So I guess you have to think about what you might want to do with your tow vehicle. If you want to stay on good roads 99% of the time, 2WD should be enough.

I hope that helps.
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Old 03-26-2011, 06:10 PM   #18
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I think it's interesting how we almost religiously worry about tow vehicle capacity and lawyers.

Today we drove 70 miles on Interstate 95 in GA and SC. We stayed to the right driving at 60 mph, faster than normal but attempting to be a little courteous to others. In a little over an hour we were passed by at least 25 RV trailers going over 65 mph, exceeding the ratings of their tires, the most common RV failure point. Hardly anyone worries about this. Very Interesting and something worth pondering.

Norm
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Old 03-26-2011, 06:12 PM   #19
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Trailer: 2011 Casita Liberty Deluxe with 2005 Chevy Express tow vehicle
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Wow, Mike, that sure does help. I've read explanations before that left me more confused than ever. You made it so easy to understand. It sounds like 2WD or AWD would be best for me.

I never considered using a minivan.

I'm feeling much better about the E150 V8 with 2WD. I know the V8 will guzzle the gas but I want power and cargo space, and I won't be driving that much once I get to the Southwest. Not like now with my daily work commute!

Thanks so much for the info, Mike. You cleared up a lot of questions I had.

Sue
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Old 03-27-2011, 12:40 AM   #20
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Hi Sue,

I drove full size vans for several years. I liked the vans for many reasons and one was the ease of storage and access to the stuff inside. I had chevy and dodge. I never got better than about 14mpg average and I don't know what that would be towing. There are some downside to having a van. They don't ride or drive like a car. I would suggest renting (or borrow) one for a few days of normal driving. See if it suites you. I would think most any v8 full size van would have no problem towing a Casita - but always make your own evaluation.

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Old 03-27-2011, 09:23 AM   #21
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You're right, Steve, they don't drive like a car. Many years ago I drove similar vans to what I'm looking at. They were the kind with seats and windows used to transport handicapped students to a special school. I also owned one briefly and used it for van camping.

Then a relative had a painting business and I sometimes used his van for in town, as well as an interstate trip. Not a cushy ride. They can be noisy if you don't pack carefully. (Need the floor mat) But like you said, ease of storage and access to stuff is great.

Another yes vote on a V8 van, thanks.

Sue
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Old 03-27-2011, 10:48 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Wandering Sue View Post
Wow, Mike, that sure does help. I've read explanations before that left me more confused than ever. You made it so easy to understand. It sounds like 2WD or AWD would be best for me.

I never considered using a minivan.

I'm feeling much better about the E150 V8 with 2WD. I know the V8 will guzzle the gas but I want power and cargo space, and I won't be driving that much once I get to the Southwest. Not like now with my daily work commute!

Thanks so much for the info, Mike. You cleared up a lot of questions I had.

Sue
You're welcome. Maybe it's a bit of the teacher in me? I could've been a teacher, if my father hadn't told me that he would help me go to college to be anything except a teacher. It was the mid '70s and there were too many teachers, not enough openings. Had it not been for that I might be a teacher today. Instead I went into business, and eventually I became a Books Are Fun rep. Do you have Books Are Fun displays at your school?

About the solar panel question you had, I have no direct experience but I know of no reason not to put solar panels on the van's roof. The big thing you would want to avoid is a long wiring run (leading to current loss from wire's electrical resistance) between the panel and the controller/battery area, but I don't think it would be an excessive distance at all. Some people make their panels portable to set on the ground a ways from the trailer, which probably means even longer wires than what you would need.
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Old 03-27-2011, 12:23 PM   #23
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A van is a fine choice, but the full sized ones do tend to be thirsty when it comes to fuel. The full size vans are a better match for a fully loaded 17' Casita, the minivans usually top out about 3500 lbs on tow capacity and sometimes have low hitches/drawbars that bottom out on dips.
They are great for carrying large items like bikes and solve the problem of how to carry them and secure them.
We had a Ford Econoline cargo van we customized to our taste years ago and loved it. The Dodge full size van is now imported from Mercedes Benz and is called a Sprinter van, with a diesel engine that gives good range but costs more than a Chevy or Ford van.

John
I really like my Sprinter so far as a Tow Rig.
Handling seems mostly unaffected towing as does fuel economy.
Huge inside and mine is the shortest and smallest model.
Used they can be had for a reasonable price,maybe higher than a Ford but also hold value much better.

Ed
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P1000067.jpg   Sprinter&Tab2.jpg  

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Old 03-27-2011, 12:33 PM   #24
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Ed
What kind of mileage do you get?

Norm
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Old 03-27-2011, 01:08 PM   #25
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Sue, I think it's a fantastic idea and Ed's set up looks really nice!
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Old 03-27-2011, 01:35 PM   #26
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Vickie, I agree. Ed's set-up looks great. I notice the back windows are tinted. Nice.
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Old 03-27-2011, 01:41 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by Wandering Sue View Post
This post has multi-topics. Forgive me if I put it in the wrong place.

Call me crazy, but I'm considering a cargo van for my tow vehicle.

What appeals to me is the storage space a cargo van would give a fulltimer like me. I could keep my dogs' crates in there, out of season clothes, tools, ladder, my inflatable boat and paddles, a screen room if I decide to get one, etc.

And what about putting the solar panels on the van's roof instead of drilling holes in my precious egg? Then the egg can be in the shade while the panels are in the sun.

The E150s I've seen are V8 with 2WD. I've driven cargo vans so I know they are not luxury vehicles. Also a van is more vulnerable to wind.

But gee, all that storage space will help me keep my Casita uncluttered.

Any thoughts on getting a cargo van for towing, specifically the E150?
Sue,

We're towing a 13' trailer (Ventura) with an 2005 E150 5.4 Liter Triton engine with a 3.55 rear axle.

The towing capacity of the E150 is 6,500 lbs, or so, which is about 5-6 of these trailers - in case you want to pull a train of them.

As for gas mileage, I think we're about equal to what it would be if we towed with our 3.0 liter Ford Taurus. Anecdotal accounts leads me to believe that towing with smaller engines nearly halves the mileage in many cases.

As for the van, I think that the trailer only reduces mileage by ten percent, or a couple of miles per gallon. Furthermore, the frontal area and fullheight back end creates more of a draft for the towed vehicle to slipstream in.
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Old 03-27-2011, 01:43 PM   #28
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Mike, I'm not sure if it's Books Are Fun. We have a rep who brings special books and related items to the media center, high quality. It may be BAF. I'm a math teacher so I didn't notice the company name. You seemed wistful about teaching. So was I once, but the profession has changed in tune with our culture. But that's not a topic for here!
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