Ford E150 Cargo Van - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-27-2011, 01:53 PM   #29
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Name: Sue
Trailer: 2011 Casita Liberty Deluxe with 2005 Chevy Express tow vehicle
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Darrell, Thanks for explaining towing capacity with a visual I can understand (a chain of trailers... cute)! I hadn't thought about slipstream effect. Looking at the boxiness of a full size van you assume it will contribute to bad gas mileage. Your reasoning about the smaller engine reducing mileage makes sense.

What really gets me is that I got the idea about the E150, clicked on Carmax and there flashed a pic of a beauty with 27,000 miles, shiny white, but I didn't know all that you guys have taught me in this forum so.... I hesitated. She's gone, of course. Eerrgh.
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Old 03-27-2011, 02:02 PM   #30
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I tend to get around 27 mpg around town and that is with the Sprinter loaded with tools and materials.
I really only drive it local but plan to go some distance soon as it is so handy to have the space.
I have yet to go on anything but a local trip (under 100 miles) so far with the Sprinter but noticed no difference and I did fill it up before and after towing to try to discern one.

The Sprinter has a 2.7L Turbo Diesel and mine is not as long as my Honda Odyssey which gets around 20 mpg with the 3.5L V6.

A good friend of mine has a Sprinter too and his is taller and longer than mine. He drives around the country Repping Pro Audio gear out of his and gets just under 25ish usually. He is LOADED down most of the time!

We also built a bed in his that sits across the window sills and he has a normal twin mattress on it and sleeps there often while on the road.

Most Sprinters do not have windows but I was determined to find one that did as did my friend.

The Sprinter is also a commercial duty truck and they are known to go 1/2 million miles with proper care.

A few others here also have them and seem to like them for towing too.
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Old 03-27-2011, 08:50 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Darrell O View Post
Sue,


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.
For informational purposes, our Honda's gas mileage with a 2.4L 4 cylinder engine drops from 28 to 23 mpg when towing, an 18% drop.

Norm
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Old 03-27-2011, 10:02 PM   #32
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Just to clarify... especially for our European members: The Ford Transit is not availably in the US. The model that people are talking about is the Ford Transit Connect, which is the Transit's little brother. The Transit is more like the Sprinter van. The Transit Connect comes to the US with a 2.0 liter gasoline engine. In Europe, it is usually sold with a 1.8 liter turbodiesel engine that produces either 75, 90, or 110 horsepower.
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Old 03-28-2011, 02:11 PM   #33
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Found a Dodge Sprinter 118" wheel base locally. It was a cargo van with around 118,000 miles and a pretty good price, around $15,000. There was a divider behind the driver/passenger seats and a totally flat wood floor in the back. It also had rails on the side for tying things down. You could tow your trailer and haul lots of important stuff you can't live without in the rear of that Sprinter.

i think they used the 5-cylinder diesel engine through 2006, then moved up to the 6-cylinder diesel. The Sprinter certainly opens up more TV options.

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Old 03-28-2011, 02:47 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by CallDon View Post
Found a Dodge Sprinter 118" wheel base locally. It was a cargo van with around 118,000 miles and a pretty good price, around $15,000. There was a divider behind the driver/passenger seats and a totally flat wood floor in the back. It also had rails on the side for tying things down. You could tow your trailer and haul lots of important stuff you can't live without in the rear of that Sprinter.

i think they used the 5-cylinder diesel engine through 2006, then moved up to the 6-cylinder diesel. The Sprinter certainly opens up more TV options.

D*
You are correct Sir!
The 118" was also discontinued in '07 and that is what I have too.
A great resource is : Sprinter-Source.com and feel free to PM me for a number if you want to talk about it at all.

The model I have only has 13 computers controlling it where the new ones triple that I understand and they do not seem as reliable in general but are much more car like.
They are also offered with Gas engines now but even the Diesel models do not get the mileage the T1N's do
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Old 03-28-2011, 03:06 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Wandering Sue View Post
Any thoughts on getting a cargo van for towing, specifically the E150?
Hi Wandering Sue,

I used a Ford Econoline E150 for many years as my primary vehicle. The gas mileage was fairly poor, but my vintage was the late 80’s and perhaps they have improved. I used to get around 14 mpg on average, and that was with the 20% larger Canadian gallon. The rear drive should get you a decent tow rating, maybe 5,000 lbs, and the cargo van option may be relatively noisy. I loved the space in it, as we had it designed for camping with the kids. The kids affectionately called it the “Ord”, as the “F” was missing from the rear name plate, and we had many years of fun in it until it died at about 350,000 miles. A good solid vehicle.

More recently, last year I installed a solar panel on the roof of my Ford Aerostar minivan, which also had more than 5000 lb. tow rating but got somewhat better gas mileage, about 22 mpg without the trailer and 18 with it. After much discussion on this forum (thread found here: http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f55/solar-controller-mounting-for-boler-40869.html ) , I mounted the solar panel to the van roof rack and ran the wires down the rear door seal so that it was mostly hidden, to the 7 pin van-trailer connector. I used the 12V charge terminal and the unused terminal on the trailer connector for the two wires from the solar panel. These connected on the trailer side to the positive and negative 12V inputs on the solar charge controller. The solar controller was mounted in the battery box with the battery. As a result, no wiring or panels had to be mounted on the trailer. I made up an extension cord of about 20 feet from a standard outdoor extension cord with 7 pin trailer connectors on each end which were wired only for the two wires from the solar panel. That way, when we were camping I could move the tow vehicle away from the trailer but still connect up the solar panel. Of course, the same pin arrangement could be used to connect up a portable solar panel while camping, as some people prefer.

This worked very well. The one time I could not charge my battery was when I was camping with friends and all the cars were parked away from the group camp area where all the trailers were mashed together. Other than that I was very happy with it.

Now we have a “new” trailer (Trillium 4500) and a new tow vehicle, a 2007 Chevy Uplander minivan, and so I have to make the decision again. I am still undecided whether to mount the solar panel on the trailer or the van, we will see when the weather gets better and I can work on the trailer again. Either way has advantages and drawbacks.

Rick G.
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Old 03-28-2011, 03:58 PM   #36
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Trailer: 2011 Casita Liberty Deluxe with 2005 Chevy Express tow vehicle
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Rick, Thank you for taking the time to write your very informative post. I will use it as a resource when the time comes to mount the solar panel. It is so helpful to hear other people's experiences and opinions.

There's no way I could do the wiring (the daughter of an electrician, I am, I am, but being a girl I guess he didn't think to teach me about wiring, bless his soul).

I enjoyed your tale about the Ord. 350,000. You got your money's worth.

Yes, a cargo van will be noisy. The floor mat is a must, plus packing very carefully to avoid metal against metal.

I'm convinced to put the solar panel on the van. I can't bear the thought of drilling any holes in my Casita. Ouchy!
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:56 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by Ed Harris View Post
You are correct Sir!
The 118" was also discontinued in '07 and that is what I have too.
A great resource is : Sprinter-Source.com and feel free to PM me for a number if you want to talk about it at all.

The model I have only has 13 computers controlling it where the new ones triple that I understand and they do not seem as reliable in general but are much more car like.
They are also offered with Gas engines now but even the Diesel models do not get the mileage the T1N's do
i need to move things, musical and electronic things occasionally. if I had the extra $$ sitting around, I might consider buying this little Sprinter I found locally today. It is a 2005 Sprinter with a 118 WB and 138,000 miles. They are asking $15,000. The engine is the diesel 2.7L I5. This is a work truck with a divider behind seats, manual windows. But a wood floor in the back. But it would certainly pull a 3500 pound fibreglass trailer. And i could haul plenty of stuff in it when i wanted to or needed to!

I did join Sprinter-Source to look around. Thanks for that link. My original plan was to modify a 2005-2007 Lincoln Town Car as a TV for a Casita 17'. But this Sprinter idea has more uses and evidently gets better gas mileage, or at least as good when towing.

Don
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Old 03-28-2011, 09:18 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CallDon View Post
i need to move things, musical and electronic things occasionally. if I had the extra $$ sitting around, I might consider buying this little Sprinter I found locally today. It is a 2005 Sprinter with a 118 WB and 138,000 miles. They are asking $15,000. The engine is the diesel 2.7L I5. This is a work truck with a divider behind seats, manual windows. But a wood floor in the back. But it would certainly pull a 3500 pound fibreglass trailer. And i could haul plenty of stuff in it when i wanted to or needed to!

I did join Sprinter-Source to look around. Thanks for that link. My original plan was to modify a 2005-2007 Lincoln Town Car as a TV for a Casita 17'. But this Sprinter idea has more uses and evidently gets better gas mileage, or at least as good when towing.

Don
The other day a friend needed my help moving some stuff(liability of owning a giant van) and I had a refrigerator and a couch in there together! With my normal load of crap!!

The next day my cousin caught me and we loaded a 14' rug in there,up to the windshield but with the back doors closed.
I carry 10' Strut all the time on the floor and have had 5 50" Plasma TV's in there at the same time.

On Saturday I am supplying A/V for a Final 4 party at a Country Club and will have a huge Sound System in there with 2 50" Plasmas and stands and all other stuff needed. Before the Sprinter it took 2 or more trips,not any more.

Mine is the "Baby" Sprinter and holds so much it is amazing,again it is not as long as an Odyssey but MUCH wider and taller.

I love mine
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Old 03-30-2011, 01:13 PM   #39
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Ford Transit's are way too expensive. I would like to try a Chevy Astro cargo van, Not too big but not too small, v6 power and economy and rear wheel drive.
I was sorry to see GM quite making the Astro. We had an 87 that went over 250,000 miles when gave it to a son; I don't know how many more miles he got out of it in the three years he had it. (We did have to repair the transmission once in that time.) Our Astro was rated to tow 5600 lbs. and we pulled our 22' sailboat that weighed 2200 lbs with no problem with just a class II hitch. It only got 18mpg with that big 4.3L engine, but it was a real workhorse, the same engine they put in the full-size Chevy trucks and S-10s.
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Old 04-30-2011, 04:41 PM   #40
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Thumbs up

Since I started this thread asking about the Ford E150, here's an update. I purchased a 2005 Chevy Express van. I'm happy with it so far. It rides very comfortably and there is a huge amount of storage space behind the 2nd row bench seat.

You can read about it at rvsueandcrew.wordpress.com

Thanks to everyone for input on fullsize vans as tow vehicles.
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Old 04-30-2011, 05:32 PM   #41
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Oh no, a Chevy!!! Just kidding. Let us know how you like it after you've had it a while. Happy travels. And don't be a stranger around here!
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