What lessons have you learned over the years about towing... - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-26-2015, 06:43 AM   #15
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Name: Bob Ruggles
Trailer: 2015 Escape 19 2012 Chevy Silverado
Michigan
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I've learned that you have to be aware of how the trailer tracks behind the tow vehicle especially on corners. I've also learned that there are certain gas stations not to use based on the layout of their pumps. I've learned to not be in a hurry when backing into a spot and not be afraid to pull forward as many times as necessary to get the trailer situated where I want it.
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Old 03-26-2015, 08:19 AM   #16
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Name: Norm and Ginny
Trailer: Scamp 16
Florida
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Towing Loads

A thought on Towing loads

When we write about towing loads, we always seem to be concerned about the weight of the trailer. My experience is that frontal area and shape of the trailer is at least as important, and maybe most important. In most driving situations, the largest tow vehicle load is air resistance, related to frontal area, shape and speed.

We have had towed three small trailers, a streamlined Casita 16, a streamlined Scamp 16 and a boxy Sunlight 15.5. The Sunline weighed 10-20% less than the Scamp/Casita. Over their tow life the Sunline got 10% lower gas mileage even though it was lighter.

Since the Sunline got 10% less mileage, this suggests that the load on the tow vehicle was greater with the Sunline. Again at normal driving speeds, shape, speed and frontal area are the primary tow vehicle load.

All three trailers were towed with the same tow vehicle, driven by the same driver over 10s of thousands of miles all across the North America.

This implies that shape is important, a factor not prominent in the new testing criteria. The new testing criteria seems to have a hill climbing focus.

For us, people who towed with a small tow vehicle, who cared about reliability, mpg, and safety, we worked to minimize load on the tow vehicle. If we had chosen a smaller, lighter trailer with a bad shape profile, we would dramatically increase the load on our tow vehicle regardless of trailer weight. The reality is that trailer shape always effects the tow vehicle, whether driving on the flat (the majority of driving) or climbing a severe hill.

Shape. speed and frontal area count.
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Old 03-26-2015, 09:53 AM   #17
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Scamp 13
California
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Service your wheel bearing every year do it on a date you remember. Don't use your anniversary date, use a date you remember. That way even if you forget to do them or park the rig they were run in new grease with less than a year of running on them. Allot of these trailers have very small bearings that don't have allot of extra capacity.

Mount an old 7 pin socket on your trailer so when you disconnect your trailer from your tug you plug the end into the dead socket on your trailer to keep your plug clean. This helps with keeping the electrical malfunctions at bay.

People smarter than me have used this extra socket to wire in their solar array to charge the battery.

Build a before you tow pre-flight check list it can save your bacon especially if like me your stuck prepping for a tow at the last minute.

Things like, hitch pin key, tow chains, emergency breakaway switch, torque wheel bearings, tire pressure check, extension cord disconnect, windows closed, vent closed, fridge on/off, propane, on /off, fridge door latched, paper towels off towel holder. Things like that. This is especially helpful if you have assistants and can help spread the load once trained what to look for they can follow up and help cut the stress.

Carry extra chairs with these fiberglass eggs your gonna have visitors. And do remember to make your bed.
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Old 03-27-2015, 07:20 AM   #18
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Build a before you tow pre-flight check list it can save your bacon especially if like me your stuck prepping for a tow at the last minute.
Steve.... I agree. The pre-flight check list is such a good idea. Thnxs for the reminder.
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Old 03-27-2015, 02:47 PM   #19
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Name: Bob
Trailer: Escape 5.0 TA
W. Mass
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1. Don't pull in anywhere you can't see how to get out of, gas stations, coffee shops, etc.

2. Do a final walk around, then have your spouse do the same.
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Old 03-27-2015, 03:12 PM   #20
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Name: bob
Trailer: 1984 u-haul ct13; 1996 Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe; 1946 Modernistic teardrop
New York
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1. Don't pull in anywhere you can't see how to get out of, gas stations, coffee shops, etc
LOL, I seem to have a knack for picking the worst gas stations. Small and hard to maneuver, pump don't work, people ahead of me won't pull away from the pump, questionable characters hanging around, prices higher than anywhere else, big dip to drive through entering or exiting, and the best one was as I go in to pay, the owner is running out chasing a guy that stole beer.
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Old 03-27-2015, 03:15 PM   #21
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Name: Byron
Trailer: 2006 Scamp 13' towed with a 2005 Dodge Dakota 4.7l Magnum W/full tow package (over kill)
Oregon
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What I've learned over the past 10 years and almost 100,000 miles of towing. There's a lot of misinformation based on paranoia out there.
Some other things that might be missed. One the importance of working trailer brakes no matter the size of the trailer. The main purpose of trailer brakes is NOT to stop but to keep the trailer behind the tow.
Tow at reasonable speeds, well below the maximum trailer tire rated speed.
Relax and stop fretting.
That's about it. Of course there's all the laws and safety observations but those should be understood and observed before the first time towing.
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Old 03-27-2015, 03:55 PM   #22
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Name: Norm and Ginny
Trailer: Scamp 16
Florida
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With you on the brakes. Part of my mental check list is to activate just the trailer brakes as we're slowly driving away from the campsite.

A 'miracle' of the small trailer is you can pull into most anywhere, Dunkin Donuts, McDonalds, just about any gas station particularly after driving a 32 foot motorhome towing a 16 foot car.
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Old 03-27-2015, 04:40 PM   #23
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It's my husband who is the towing expert. And he truly does a magnificent job at it. One of the things I most admire is his ability to back up any trailer on a dime. I am constantly in awe. What I have learned during my (feeble) attempts ...... don't be afraid to try over and over and over, not worrying about who might be watching. And always pull far enough ahead --farther than one might think they have to---to increase the success of backing into a space.
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Old 03-27-2015, 06:02 PM   #24
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Michigan
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My simple little tip is: count the connections between tug and tow. Touch and count every time you hook up.

When hooking up I always lower the tongue onto the ball and then keep cranking until the tongue jack is stowed, then connect seven things, then touch them as I count to seven


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Old 03-27-2015, 06:27 PM   #25
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Name: Norm and Ginny
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Originally Posted by MCDenny View Post
My simple little tip is: count the connections between tug and tow. Touch and count every time you hook up.

When hooking up I always lower the tongue onto the ball and then keep cranking until the tongue jack is stowed, then connect seven things, then touch them as I count to seven

Denny Wolfe
Wanderingourway.wordpress.com
Denny,

I add a couple of steps.

When hooking up I always lower the tongue onto the ball, lock the ball, and try to jack the trailer off the ball. This is a test of the ball receiver lock.
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Old 04-18-2015, 09:52 AM   #26
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Name: Jim
Trailer: Scamp 19 5'er
Colorado
Posts: 44
Auto transmission care

My Dodge Ram auto tranny had to be rebuilt at 120K miles. When I picked it up I asked the mechanic, "How can I get the maximum mileage out of this rebuilt tranny?"

He said he has 3 rules:

1. Add an auxiliary transmission fluid cooler. The factory tow packages sometimes have them, sometimes they don't. If the tow vehicle doesn't have an auxiliary cooler, add one.

2. Service the transmission fluid & filter as recommended by the manufacturer.

3. When towing, or carrying more than a few hundred lbs in the truck bed, kick off the overdrive. Kick it off even if you're driving empty and into a headwind, or going up hill, even if it's not a 7% grade. Never tow in overdrive.

I've since put 190K on that rebuilt tranny and it's still going!

As others have stated, a checklist seems to help me!! I keep a clipboard with a checklist, and go over it twice. (Don't ask me how I learned this).

I also use synthetic motor oil in my TV and attribute that to achieving over 300K on my truck. I can't prove that, but that's what I believe.

Thanks,
piperjim

2002 Scamp 19 5'er
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Old 04-18-2015, 09:58 AM   #27
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Less is more. Less stuff is more relaxing time, more fuss free time. More opportunities to meet and learn about your neighbors. More time for to wander freely. To me the trailer is a tool to get me to places I would never have seen, therefore less is more places to be seen.
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Old 04-18-2015, 11:02 AM   #28
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Denny,

I add a couple of steps.

When hooking up I always lower the tongue onto the ball, lock the ball, and try to jack the trailer off the ball. This is a test of the ball receiver lock.
I saw my dad doing that check way back in the 60's. It is a good one.
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