New, and wondering if this truck would work. - Page 4 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-27-2015, 01:56 PM   #43
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Name: Bob Ruggles
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A couple of thoughts: for several years Dodge 2500 4x4 had some steering issues sometimes referred to as the "death wobble." Basic design flaw. I added two aftermarket items designed to correct the problem. Both improved the situation but did not eliminate it. Whatever tow vehicle you consider, INSIST on it having a tow package with a hitch receiver that has the two inch opening. Pay little to no attention to horsepower ratings for towing. If you look up the definition of horsepower you'll find that it has to do with the speed of application of the torque. I tow with a Chevy V8 pickup but have towed the same trailer with both a Chrysler minivan and a Buick Enclave, both 6 cylinders and both did a good job.
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Old 03-27-2015, 06:34 PM   #44
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Tacomas are good tow vehicles for our lightweight FG eggs. If it has the V6, it has plenty of power. The 4 cylinder engine will be slower going in mountains, plus I have read that the rear differential is the weak point in the 4 cyl's drive train (the V6 gets a bigger rear end gear set).

If you are shopping for a new Ford pickup, I've heard TV ads from the local Ford dealer offering new F150 crew cabs for $25,900... probably base engine and no frills, but even so, it gives you an idea of how much they can be discounted if you shop around.

FWD can be iffy when you have more than about 300 lbs on the hitch and no weight distributing hitch is used to put more on the front axle; the weight on the rear will take some off the front wheels and make them susceptible to loss of traction on wet, loose, or slippery surfaces. 4WD is a part time system that you can't use on dry pavement, but it can be helpful on those low-traction surfaces like wet grass, mud, gravel, etc. I am a fan of AWD (all wheel drive), which is always on and always helping 'just in case it's needed'. My 2000 Mercury Mountaineer and 2008 Toyota Highlander both have AWD, and the latter has towed trailers for about 140,000 of its 178,000 miles.
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Old 03-27-2015, 09:08 PM   #45
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Name: William
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I called my 80yr old mom and asked her if she would sell me her 4WD Tacoma, and she said no, because she might need it to drive behind the cornfields. :|

After researching tow vehicles again, I got depressed about how much money I would lose selling my Transit Connect, and how much it would cost to buy a fairly new vehicle, and then buy a trailer. So I considered getting a used motorhome that could tow my TC. Then I watched some youtube videos about people buying old motorhomes, and having to do major repairs on them, only to decide that a FG trailer was still the best option.

I know FG trailers have mechanical problems too, but at least they allow the problems to be separated. "car" problems are all in the tow vehicle, and "house" problems are all in the trailer. A plumbing link in the trailer will not ruin your car, etc. From what I have read, the FG trailers are more reliable because they are basically water-proof. Water seems to be the killer of all things RV.

Thanks rgrugg for mentioning "death wobble". I was seriously looking at some low-priced Ram 1500s today, which turned out to be from the years (pre-2013) that suffered from "death wobble". I had a 2004 Jeep Wrangler Rocky Mountain Edition that had "death wobble", and the dealership played dumb like they thought I was crazy. So I traded it in for subcompact car. A year later they settled a class action lawsuit, and had to install some type of dampener on the Jeeps. If I had got another vehicle with "death wobble", I would have been screaming mad. I guess I will look at the F150s again.

Several people have mentioned vans/minivans, but there is a chance my vehicle would need to go off-road. I may need to drive around on a farm that has dirt roads and tractor trails.

I am still researching the various vehicles mentioned in this thread, thanks for everyone's suggestions. I will also look for AWD/4WD vans, I think the CRV is one, and some old Astro/Safari vans.

I keep mentally flip-flopping from motorhome+TransitConnectVan, and 4wdTowVehicle+FgTrailer. Financially, the first option is easier in the short run, but the second option is my long term goal. As I'm in my late 40s, I'm thinking since I'm not going to live forever, I better just do whatever my long-term goal is right now.
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Old 03-27-2015, 09:12 PM   #46
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I believe Rgrugg was referring to 3/4 ton rams with the death wobble, not the ram 1500 which AFAIK did to have this issue, at least my 2009 did not.
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Old 03-27-2015, 09:48 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
I believe Rgrugg was referring to 3/4 ton rams with the death wobble, not the ram 1500 which AFAIK did to have this issue, at least my 2009 did not.
Oops, you are right. I was looking at a 2012 Ram 1500. This page says the Ram 1500 was only affected by "death wobble" from 2006-2008:

Dodge Ram Death Wobble

But it also says, "It's important to note that beginning in the 2013 model year, Chrysler redesigned its trucks (and changed the brand name to just Ram) with a new reciprocating ball steering gear that provides greater durability and control. The trucks also have better steering knuckles, ball joints and more robust linkages. Did I mention they haven't had any death wobble issues? Hmm."

I had made a mental note that they had fixed it in 2013, that's why I thought the 2012 model was affected. I have to admit I would not want to buy a 2012 model knowing they made the change in 2013. My Jeep didn't develop the wobble until the 3rd year I owned.
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Old 03-28-2015, 06:29 AM   #48
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Bill.... I think you have discovered the motorhome idea can be very costly and generally speaking they are not that safe.

Sounds like you are learning lots with your research and will eventually find the right combination for your needs.
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Old 03-28-2015, 06:59 AM   #49
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Motorhomes

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Bill.... I think you have discovered the motorhome idea can be very costly and generally speaking they are not that safe.

Sounds like you are learning lots with your research and will eventually find the right combination for your needs.
The upside of a motorhome is it can be inexpensive.

When we started we didn't know anything and were deciding between a motorhome and a trailer. To purchase a fair sized trailer or fifth wheel required we buy a truck. It turned out for the price of a truck we could buy a used motorhome.

We purchased a 4 year old motorhome for $35,000 with 20,000 miles that we drove for 7 years covering 100,000 miles.

It functioned very well with few problems. It was spacious, comfortable and reliable (particularly when I read about issues like the death wobble).

The downside of a motorhome is that it gets poor miles per gallon, 7.5 mpg. When I read of people towing small trailers with trucks getting 12-15 mpg it doesn't sound too bad. Particularly when one considers you can be towing a small car behind the motorhome that gets great mileage.

In retrospect, we would have started our travels with a small trailer towing with our Honda CRV if we were as experienced as we are now. However, if I had come home with a Scamp 16 and said we're going to take off for 14 years in the Scamp, Ginny would have, at least initially, really thought I'd lost my mind. The motorhome served as a transition rig.
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Old 03-28-2015, 07:30 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by honda03842 View Post
The upside of a motorhome is it can be inexpensive.

We purchased a 4 year old motorhome for $35,000 with 20,000 miles that we drove for 7 years covering 100,000 miles.

It functioned very well with few problems.

The downside of a motorhome is that it gets poor miles per gallon, 7.5 mpg.
I think the key with a Motorhome is to use it often and the ones with heavy duty chassis and drivetrains do stand up well. The problem in many cases is that they sit for months, or even years at a time and that is when the problems show up. Rubber belts, seals, hoses, age quickly when not used.
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Old 03-28-2015, 10:03 AM   #51
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I agree Wayne.

I look at everything from my perspective when talking about rigs. We for example travels o much that we don't ever winterize. The longest period our rig sits is about 3 months and than we don't shut it down while it sits in our front yard. I'm in and out virtually every day doing something.

I have come to realize that a very small percentage of people travel extensively on this site compared to my normal crowd of Escapee friends who all traveled for 10-20 years.
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Old 03-30-2015, 04:30 PM   #52
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Thanks for all the feedback.

Tow vehicle acquired!

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2014 Nissan Frontier SV 4x4 Crew Cab V6
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Old 03-30-2015, 04:51 PM   #53
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Good choice, enjoy!
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Old 03-30-2015, 05:41 PM   #54
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Bill.... Those Nissan's are very reliable. Think you will enjoy that bonus.
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Old 03-30-2015, 07:19 PM   #55
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Ok, I called the car place and said I was going to look around a little more, and look for a smaller vehicle. I was going to pick it up in a few hours!

Reliability is very important to me, so I will keep an eye out for what people say is most reliable.

Wow, I didn't know the smaller trucks could pull that much. I had not looked at pickups because my original goal was a van, but now I like pickups because they tend to have 4wd and can pull a 5th wheel. I can also put a camper shell on the back, and it is sorta like a van. Ok, I'm starting over. I still may end up with the Ram 2500, it sounds more than capable, but it may in fact be way more than I need. I am definitely going with a FG trailer, so that gives me an idea what tow ratings to look for.

I think I will look for something new or very low miles that is less than $30k if possible.
I have pulled a 17 casita and 17 Lil Snoozy , with my 2011 ford ranger 4.0 v6 tow cap is 5800 no problems at all even in the Rockies
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