New, and wondering if this truck would work. - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-26-2015, 10:11 AM   #21
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Name: Ray
Trailer: 2017 Scamp 16 Deluxe
Missouri
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William,

I agree that the previous truck you were considering was overkill for a
Casita or Scamp 16/17 ft trailer.

I also agree that reliability is an important consideration in a tow vehicle.

If you go to an RV park and move fairly infrequently, fuel economy might
not be a huge issue. However, if you are exploring the country and moving
about a lot, fuel economy might become a consideration in your total RVing
costs.

Another factor to consider is how big a vehicle you want to drive and park
for grocery shopping an other normal errands on a frequent basis.

There is at least one school of thought that suggests that diesel engines
and turbocharged engines are best for towing because of their higher
torque at lower rpms.

We have had large vans and mini-vans in recent years and my wife
didn't particularly want to drive and park another large vehicle. We now
drive a 2014 Ford Escape 2.0L Ecoboost (turbo) SUV that has sufficient
torque and horsepower to pull a 16/17 ft trailer if we decide that our
Scamp13 is too small to meet future longer duration traveling needs.

The new aluminum Ford F-150 with an EcoBoost engine might be
something you might want to investigate. As mentioned, there seem
to be a new crop of Eco-diesel vehicles that are now becoming
available. Perhaps largely based on past reliability experience, another
forum member pulls a 16 ft Scamp with a new Honda Odyssey with
fairly good success.

When selecting a tow vehicle, I might suggest taking a look at the
engine torque at your expected towing rpm.

Here are a couple of URLs that may serve as "food for thought".

Towing - horsepower versus torque
http://auto.howstuffworks.com/auto-parts/towing/towing-capacity/information/horsepower-versus-torque1.htm 

Stout EcoBoost I-4 Plays Well Above Weight Class
http://wardsauto.com/vehicles-amp-technology/stout-ecoboost-i-4-plays-well-above-weight-class

As always, YMMV.

You should pick something with the reliability, comfort, and towing
capability that you can be happy with.


Good luck on your search!

Ray
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Old 03-26-2015, 11:01 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whoot View Post
IThe one thing I don't like about trailers, is not being in the cab of the tow vehicle. If someone causes trouble for me while boondocking, I would have to exit the trailer to get in the tow-vehicle to leave.
Back in the 1970's Dad had some trouble in the middle-of-nowhere in Mexico. As he described it some "Banditos" were rocking the truck and slide-in camper he and my Stepmom were sleeping in and shouting for him to throw money out so they would leave him alone. Instead, he opened the back door and tossed two shots into the dirt behind the rig (yes I know this will give some vapors just reading that, just go with it, all the identifiable participants have passed on). He then eased out and around the camper with his keys in one hand and the pistol in the other. He got in the cab and did not stop till he got to "civilization" as he put it. My Stepmom described it as one wild ride in the truck camper.

I'm saying anything with a "Hemi" ought to make a fine tug. A classic Charger or other old (or new) Mopar muscle machine would be a pretty cool tow rig. I have a 1965 Coronet myself, but alas it has only a Slant Six under the hood. Bet it would still tow my Scamp though.
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Old 03-26-2015, 11:13 AM   #23
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I am always thinking of the least vehicle I can tow my trailers with. Kind of ironic, since I actually tow with a Savana 1500. I think the least vehicle I would tow my under 3500 lb trailers with would be a Ford Ranger, 4 cylinder, five speed.
Mini vans are also a good choice. They break the wind for the trailer. We also tow with a Safari.
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Old 03-26-2015, 12:12 PM   #24
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I'll might as well put my oar in to. We pull our Escape 5.0 with a Nissan Frontier and it does a marvelous job of it. We know of another person who has the same rig and has been towing with it for 5 years and 50,000 miles trouble free. The Frontier has a very reliable 4 liter engine with 260 horse power and a 6500 lb. towing capacity.
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Old 03-26-2015, 12:42 PM   #25
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Camper or not?

I would note that the poster said that they may want to put a camper shell on the back. I know with my 2011 Ram 1500 that it is not an option to carry a camper but it is rated to tow just shy of 10000# with the towing package and 3.92 gear ratio. If the OP is thinking of a camper 3/4 ton (2500) would be the minimum to go. Fuel economy will suck though I speak from experience as I am getting ready for my own 9000 km trip pulling the Boler starting Friday.
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Old 03-26-2015, 05:40 PM   #26
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I think he was referring to a cap vs a truck camper, caps are sometimes called a shell. Perhaps he can clarify his intent. A shell on a Ram 1500 is about 2-300 lbs depending on the build.
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Old 03-26-2015, 06:26 PM   #27
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Name: William
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Oops, yes I meant to say "cap" when I said "shell", not a camper like a Lance. I'm still going through all the comments, thank you everyone for replying. I have a few questions:

1) Does it matter if a pickup is rear-wheel only drive, or should it be 4WD? I think I read front-wheel drive was not a good idea. I am using some online car-building guides, and they ask if you want 2WD or 4WD.

2) It seems like the Ram 1500 & 2500 cannot carry much weight in the bed (compared to Ford), but can pull a lot. Is that correct? I was toying with the idea of getting a truck-camper (like a Lance), which would seem to exclude the Ram pickups.

3) If I want the option of living in a truck-camper (like a Lance), is it important to get an "extended" length bed in back?

I am currently leaning towards a 2015 F150, regular cab, standard bed, 4WD, XL package. The max towing is 7400 lbs. The website has a "truevalue" of $29k. I don't think this car has an "EcoBoost" I keep reading about.
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Old 03-26-2015, 06:44 PM   #28
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If you can set aside the idea of getting a 5th wheel Bill I would be looking at a Mini Van. Toyota or Honda with front wheel drive will deliver on all your needs and will do them well. Better ride than a truck and more reliable.
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Old 03-26-2015, 06:46 PM   #29
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If you are going to use a truck camper you will need a 3/4 ton truck, a Ram 2500 or Ford
F250 to carry the weight of the camper which will be around 1200 lbs minimum dry and closer to 2000 lbs wet. Plus adding the tongue weight will be another 4-500 lbs. There is a saying, never buy a cord of wood from someone driving a pick up truck, you will need add least a small dump truck due to the weight. A 1/2 ton truck will not work for you.
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Old 03-26-2015, 10:44 PM   #30
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Missouri
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I could be wrong, but I think that the 2015 F-150 has two optional
Ecoboost engines; a 2.7L and a 3.5L

Ray
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Old 03-27-2015, 04:55 AM   #31
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We have been pulling with a 2003 Honda Odyssey van for the past seven years. The van had 113,000 miles when purchased and now has 210,000. In that time we have purchased a battery and it needs a second set of tires. It's been super reliable. We get about 15-17 mpg pulling our 16' Scamp SB for the first five years and now it pulls a 17' Casita. Our intention is to purchase a newer Odyssey in the next year or two. Our previous tow vehicle was a 2002 Chevy diesel pickup. It was huge, drove like a tank, and got poor fuel mileage, even when not pulling. We like the better ride, fuel mileage, and smaller footprint of the Odyssey. TETO

Enjoy,

Perry
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Old 03-27-2015, 07:02 AM   #32
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Trailer: 2017 Scamp 16 Deluxe
Missouri
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William,

Our Honda CRV is AWD. Because we have planned to go south in the winter and north in
the summer (and because the AWD option would have cost us more purchase dollars and
likely have cost a couple of towing MPGs), our 2014 Ford Escape 2.0L Ecoboost was
configured with FWD.

The FWD Escape actually performed well (traction-wise) in the winter storm Octavia
white-out/blizzard that we encountered on our way home from Scamp Camp 2015 (in
Sebring, Fl) and our recent fuel economy (towing a minimum-weight Scamp13) has been
in the 21-25 mpg range ( see Eggcamper Weight, Tongue Weight & Towing with Outback ).

Although I have towed with a RWD vehicle many years ago, I will leave that for someone
else (with more recent experience) to comment on.

Ray


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Old 03-27-2015, 07:12 AM   #33
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Name: William
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The FWD Escape actually performed well (traction-wise) in the winter storm Octavia white-out/blizzard
Hi RD, maybe I had read that a FWD was no good when towing a 5th wheel, but was fine for towing a regular trailer. That might make sense. It seems a lot of people are fine towing with FWD, so I must have misunderstood what I read.

It just occurred to me that a family member was considering selling their 2003 Toyota Tacoma 4WD V6 Prerunner Doublecab, maybe I will check if it is still available. It appears to have a tow rating of 5k lbs. That could save me a lot of money, if I could figure out how to get it from 2000 miles away. Maybe I could one-way rent a car? 2003 is kinda old though, but I know the truck is in excellent shape.
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Old 03-27-2015, 07:32 AM   #34
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if I could figure out how to get it from 2000 miles away.

There's a company that sets up people to transport vehicles around the country. Can't think of the name now, but a friend did it a couple times when he needed to get from Arizona to the east coast. Basically he drove the car to where the owner wanted it delivered. I think one time he had to pay for the gas, but sometimes the vehicle owner will pay it. I had a pickup truck shipped from Arizona to upstate NY several years ago on one of those car hauler big rigs. Cost me $1000. You could also try Uship.
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Old 03-27-2015, 07:41 AM   #35
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New, and wondering if this truck would work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by whoot View Post
It just occurred to me that a family member was considering selling their 2003 Toyota Tacoma 4WD V6 Prerunner Doublecab, maybe I will check if it is still available. It appears to have a tow rating of 5k lbs. That could save me a lot of money, if I could figure out how to get it from 2000 miles away. Maybe I could one-way rent a car? 2003 is kinda old though, but I know the truck is in excellent shape.

That sounds like a great option to me. It would pull any but the largest fiberglass trailers, it would likely be reliable, and its compact size, high clearance, and 4WD would be perfect for boondocking. You might want to check one thing though- I thought the "Prerunner" designation meant a raised suspension but 2WD. If so, it would still be fine for towing most places.

As to getting it, what's wrong with flying?
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Old 03-27-2015, 07:59 AM   #36
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New, and wondering if this truck would work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by whoot View Post
Hi RD, maybe I had read that a FWD was no good when towing a 5th wheel, but was fine for towing a regular trailer. That might make sense. It seems a lot of people are fine towing with FWD, so I must have misunderstood what I read.

FWD is fine for smaller trailers, but not as good for heavier trailers. When you add weight to the back, weight is transferred from the front (drive) axle to the rear axle and traction is diminished. On the highway, you probably won't notice, but going up a gravel incline you might. Some people overcome this by using a weight distributing hitch, but many FWD vehicles advise against a WDH. Personally, if I were planning to tow anything over 2500# or so, or if I planned to spend much time on unpaved roads, I'd want RWD or 4WD/AWD.
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Old 03-27-2015, 08:56 AM   #37
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It just occurred to me that a family member was considering selling their 2003 Toyota Tacoma 4WD V6 Prerunner Doublecab, maybe I will check if it is still available. It appears to have a tow rating of 5k lbs. That could save me a lot of money, if I could figure out how to get it from 2000 miles away. Maybe I could one-way rent a car? 2003 is kinda old though, but I know the truck is in excellent shape.
13 year old truck, but than again that era Tacoma is one of the most reliable vehicles ever made. Depending on the mileage and the price that might be perfect for what your looking for. Also if it doesn't work out you can probably sell it for close to what it will cost you.
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Old 03-27-2015, 09:01 AM   #38
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Much is possible with a small SUV.

We towed a trailer across Labrador when it was a 1000 mile dirt road in 2008, virtually totally gravel with more 10% grades than I've ever seen and even an 18% grade. We towed a 2200 pound Sunline with our 2004, 4 cylinder Honda CRV and never had a single issue. Of course we did not make it a practice to stop in the middle of a severe grade. Our Honda was more loaded than normal because we carried a small generator and a second spare tire.

We have towed a 2600 pound Scamp and a 2800 pound Casita 16 with the CRV and never had a a traction issue.

Our CRV did have on demand 4 wheel drive but it never once came into play. IN 10 years the 4wd only was used twice and not when towing. We did not have a weight distribution hitch.

It is neglected that it takes very little to horsepower to tow these small trailers. As well these small tow vehicles, particularly with a manual transmission can be well controlled for most situations.

The secondary benefit of a small tow vehicle is that you can get decent mileage and comfort when you are not towing, more than half our driving when traveling around the country.

In seven years of towing with FWD we have never had a single traction issue (or mechanical failure). When we traded it in the CRV had the original clutch.
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Old 03-27-2015, 09:17 AM   #39
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Two weeks after I gave my daughter my old Ford Explorer it blew a head gasket. If I had sold it to her I expect there would have been some upset.
I would not buy or sell a vehicle to a relative or friend and I certainly wouldn't haul a vehicle that old across the country.
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Old 03-27-2015, 10:24 AM   #40
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We bought a vehicle from a friend, worked out great, still driving it several years later. Sold a vehicle to a relative, that didn't work good at all. Had a 30 year old vehicle transported across country because of what it was and still drive it too.
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