What a Weight Distributing Hitch Does for a Bigfoot 25 - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-19-2012, 07:15 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Bruce H View Post
I am trying to avoid the alternative of going back to a larger "Super Duty" 3/4 ton because they are very expensive and the only two engines available in those are a large gasoline engine which only gets 12 mpg (without a trailer) or a diesel that would get great fuel mileage but costs an additional $7800 dollars.
12mpg is 2-3 mpg better than my last Chevrolet 1 ton gas. It couldn't even spin the tires.

Diesel trucks are best bought used. They need time to break in before they reach max power and efficiency. Thats why we laugh at customers that trade in their diesels before they hit 100,000 miles and complain about economy.
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Old 07-19-2012, 07:43 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Bruce H View Post
These bars are rated for a trailer with a maximum tongue weight of 1000 lbs so they are correct for this trailer. I am a little concerned about putting that much more pressure on the dinky Ford receiver hitch.
With the weight numbers you have shown above the bars are hardly doing anything. If the Ford receiver is weak or not up to the task it needs to be reinforced or replaced with a stronger one. Perhaps it is flexing and that is why such a small amout of weight is being transfered. Anyway this needs to be addressed IMHO.


PS.. That is one sweet Bigfoot trailer you have.
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Old 07-19-2012, 08:35 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Bruce H View Post
Hi Danny, This truck is a 2010 model with the 5.4 L V-8 six speed automatic transmission and 3.73 axle ratio. It has plenty of power for this trailer and load. I tow from Missouri to the west coast two or three times a year. I have towed a lot in the Rocky mountains and the Sierras. Never any problem with power. My previous tow vehicle was a 2007 Ford F350 with a 6 speed manual transmission, the 5.4 v-8 and also a 3.73 rear axle ratio. Ford derates the horse power on the heavier trucks. I was pulling a 21' Bigfoot with it and it was under powered. It was unable to maintain highway speed in overdrive on a strait level road. This F150 will maintain highway speed in overdrive on a strait level road.

Fuel mileage towing depends on wind direction. Tail wind = 14 mpg. Head wind = 9 mpg. No wind 10.5 to 12 mpg. Slow down to 60 mph and bump that up 1/2 to 1 mpg. I generally drive from 64 to 68 mph when on the open highway.

I will confess to one instance in 2010 where I was west bound on I-80 in Utah west of Salt Lake City one evening. That road is very level and the traffic was light. I got distracted by my cell phone and looked down to discover that I was traveling 85 mph while just feathering the throttle.

The 21' Bigfoots are hard to pull and not balanced as well as the 25'. If you want to pull either one of these trailers with a Ford F150 it is critical that the truck be equipped with the "max trailer tow" package and it helps if it has the max payload package. Those trucks are very hard to find. I had to order mine.

Ford went to a different engine lineup in 2011. The old 5.4 L engine is not being manufactured now. I am very interested in the Ecoboost engine but I have never driven one. I am pleased with my truck with the exception that I now need a crew cab with 4 doors and a back seat. (because I have several new grandsons who will need to go places with grandpa in the future).

I visited my Ford dealer this week. They have seventy 2012 model F150 crew cabs on the lot. Not a one of them has the max trailer tow package. None of the surrounding dealerships have one either. In fact they all have the shorter 5 1/2 foot bed which an ATV will not fit in. When I ask about the possibility of ordering one set up like I need they advised that production of the 2012s has ceased and Ford is now taking orders for 2013 models. They would not give me a price to order one so I will be driving my old one for a while longer. I am trying to avoid the alternative of going back to a larger "Super Duty" 3/4 ton because they are very expensive and the only two engines available in those are a large gasoline engine which only gets 12 mpg (without a trailer) or a diesel that would get great fuel mileage but costs an additional $7800 dollars.


Bruce, thanks for the information. Every bit helps.
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Old 08-26-2012, 08:58 PM   #18
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Oh great. I am planning on buying a 21' Bigfootfb and using a 2011 Silverado 1500 ext cab... Now I am thinking one will be to big and the other to small. Hmmmm
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Old 08-26-2012, 10:11 PM   #19
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Instead of air bags I had Roadmaster Active Suspension installed on my big 2007 Tundra. Once these are set you never have to touch them again. The more weight I carry in the bed the more level the truck rides. I owned a Ford F250 in 2002 had these installed on that truck.
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Old 08-27-2012, 09:02 AM   #20
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We also need to keep in mind that each situation is different. Inventory the trailer with a "do I really need that stuff here" mindset. Just filling the water tank adds a lot of weight. How full do you let the waste water tanks get before emptying them?
I think one thing we should also keep in mind is that the majority of us won't be hauling an ATV in the bed of the pickup too. That makes for quite a payload to be hauling. I wonder how it would be without that there? Do you always have that with you?
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Old 08-27-2012, 11:45 PM   #21
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We also need to keep in mind that each situation is different. Inventory the trailer with a "do I really need that stuff here" mindset. Just filling the water tank adds a lot of weight. How full do you let the waste water tanks get before emptying them?
I think one thing we should also keep in mind is that the majority of us won't be hauling an ATV in the bed of the pickup too. That makes for quite a payload to be hauling. I wonder how it would be without that there? Do you always have that with you?
I always try to travel with my fresh water tank full and the waste tanks empty because I am going to need it that way when I get to the camp site if I am dry camping, which I do 95% of the time. When I leave the camp site that may vary if I can't find a fresh water fillup or dump station.

Not having the 850 lb ATV would be a little better but I don't believe it affects the way the trailer tows very much. I pretty much always take it unless it is a fishing trip because ATVing is what I do. The truck has a rated payload capacity of 3030 lbs so even with a 1300 load and a 900 lb trailer tongue weight It is still well below rated load capacity. A side note: Ford rates this truck to tow an 11,300 lb trailer. I have some serious doubts about that even if the bed of the truck were empty.
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Old 09-01-2012, 04:03 PM   #22
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Thx Bruce, appreciate the real world data!
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Old 09-09-2012, 11:39 AM   #23
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Towing with a Tundra?

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Originally Posted by Hugh in Montana View Post
They are correct. ReRead the hitch instructions. I think you will find that the drop in the tow vehicle hitch should only drop about 1" when you put the weight of the trailer on it. This should be done before you load the pickup. If you find where things should be set, I thing you will find the axle loads will be better. Also move as much cargo to the storage under the bed as you can this will allow the Bigfoot to carry the load and not the hitch. I tow my 25B25RQ with a 2004 Tundra.
Hugh~
I have a 2006 Tundra V8 4.7 (245 HP). It's not as big as the later V8's. I read your comment about towing the 25' Bigfoot. Which engine do you have?

I put a weight distribution system and some Timbren rubber shocks (perform similar to airbags) on this (1/2) town in preparation for purchase, but I am on the fence about pushing to the 25' er, especially given how much more the dry weight is. I am particularly interested in which engine your Tundra has and any other insights you can give me.

Thanks,

Ivan 'Z'
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Old 09-09-2012, 11:50 AM   #24
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Hi Ivan 'Z', welcome to FiberglassRV I'm sure you'll get answers to your questions and all the help you need here on this forum. Stand by!

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Old 10-24-2012, 12:47 PM   #25
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Name: Dennis
Trailer: Bigfoot 25b25rq
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Originally Posted by Bruce H View Post
According to all this the WD hitch when cinched up added 100 lbs to the front truck axle, removed 140 lbs from the rear truck axle and added 20 lbs to the trailer axle. The trailer has 920 lbs of tongue weight.
Thanks for the information on the weight of the Bigfoot, more tongue wt than I thought. We are in the process of purchasing the same camper and have a fairly long drive to pick it up. Wondering if we'll need a WDH (dually F350)? If so, is there a particular make or model to fit the "openings" in the plastic cover over the propane tanks? Also how heavy a WDH are you using or would you/folks recommend? Any need for sway control? Thanks, just joined and am really enjoying the comments and insights folks have!
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Old 10-24-2012, 02:12 PM   #26
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Just a mention about weights:

While at the RV Show in Pomona last weekend I noticed that ALL new trailers now have a sticker with the following information:

Dry Weight, MAX GVW, MAX payload, and a chart that shows how much water weighs and a listing of how much the onboard tanks hold in weight values.

I don't know how new that is, but it was very telling for a number of rigs. In short, many "Lightweights" had very limited payloads and, with personal stuff added, had to be towed without water on board.
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Old 10-24-2012, 07:31 PM   #27
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Dennis,

You won't need a weight distributing hitch to pull a 25' Bigfoot with a dually F-350. It would be no benefit at all. The holes you see cut in the fiberglass LP tank covers are not from the factory. You have to cut them yourself if you put a WD hitch on a Bigfoot. Also I can't speak for a 25' front bed model but a 25' rear queen model trails straight and does not need sway control unless you are trying to tow it with a very light weight tow vehicle.

Aside from that WD hitches come to accommodate different tongue weights. The arms are springs designed to spring according to that tongue weight. You choose the WD hitch that has a range that covers your tongue weight. You do not want one that has heavier or lighter capacity.
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Old 10-24-2012, 10:39 PM   #28
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Thanks Bruce. Just wasn't sure about the hitch receiver capacity as it lists the max weight capacity at 5,000lbs and the max tongue wt at 500lbs w/o the WDH. The numbers increase two and one-half times when the WDH is installed. The truck has air bags as we usually carry a Bigfoot 3000 series truck camper in the rear, so I don't imagine the tongue weight of the TT will be a problem as long as the hitch can handle the weight. This is our first TT, so towing something this size is new to us. Thanks for your help!
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