Newbie to RV world - Page 4 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-07-2014, 09:44 PM   #43
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Name: Francesca Knowles
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Scamp 16? No problem.

I'm a great one for heeding mfr. tow limits, but in this case I'm callin bushwa- and that only based on a very recent Rude Awakening I came to on another Forum. I'd answered a similar question (same car but newer) with the usual "but the MFR says"-type thing, but was very soon educated to the hard facts of this particular car...Which is a TANK by today's standards.

Who here knows that this is probably the very last of the ladder-frame "sedan" vehicles, and based on the famous Panther platform? I sure didn't, and made a real fool of myself before being properly educated...for those who'd like to tune in to my crow-eating revelation, the thread can be found at this RV.net link.

And there's also quite an informative entry on the subject at this Wikipedia link.
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Old 01-08-2014, 12:52 AM   #44
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Trailer: 2013 Lil Snoozy #161 (SOLD)/2010 Tacoma
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Thanks for the trip down memory lane.
I had a '73 MM with a 429 engine.
I really loved that car.
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:18 AM   #45
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Hi Sergey

Sorry that your original topic thread went into the Loo, but as you see, the entire issue of towing ratings vs. real world weight vs. liability vs. safety is a biggie hereabouts.

I, for one, appreciate your attitude to recognize that what the owners manual sez for limits is what one should follow.

All that said, keep in mind that your ratings were set for a NEW vehicle and 100,000 miles later those early 2000's may need abit of attention to bring them back to snuff including tire age considerations when adding a tow, and brake and suspension condition, shocks etc. etc. etc.

I guess what I am suggesting is that you may be SOL in finding a small trailer that meets your specifications that you can tow with your vehicle. I can't imaging anything that will have that sleeping capability, as well as a bath/shower, that will come in at much less than 3000 lbs going down the road.

But, as mentioned by many, onboard bathrooms and showers in small trailers are somewhat overrated. We sold our 13' Scamp w/bath etc and bought a 13' Bigfoot solely because of the space that the bathroom robbed from the trailer. Without the bathroom, a 13'er looks huge inside.....

I would consider something like a 17' Bigfoot to be ideal for your needs, but it will go more than a bit over your weight limit.

More than one person hereabouts has had to adjust their tow vehicle (meaning changing it) after buying a FGRV and finding out that it didn't/couldn't tow well with the existing TV.

Good Luck
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Old 01-08-2014, 01:32 PM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
Hi Sergey

Sorry that your original topic thread went into the Loo, but as you see, the entire issue of towing ratings vs. real world weight vs. liability vs. safety is a biggie hereabouts.

I, for one, appreciate your attitude to recognize that what the owners manual sez for limits is what one should follow.

All that said, keep in mind that your ratings were set for a NEW vehicle and 100,000 miles later those early 2000's may need abit of attention to bring them back to snuff including tire age considerations when adding a tow, and brake and suspension condition, shocks etc. etc. etc.

I guess what I am suggesting is that you may be SOL in finding a small trailer that meets your specifications that you can tow with your vehicle. I can't imaging anything that will have that sleeping capability, as well as a bath/shower, that will come in at much less than 3000 lbs going down the road.

But, as mentioned by many, onboard bathrooms and showers in small trailers are somewhat overrated. We sold our 13' Scamp w/bath etc and bought a 13' Bigfoot solely because of the space that the bathroom robbed from the trailer. Without the bathroom, a 13'er looks huge inside.....

I would consider something like a 17' Bigfoot to be ideal for your needs, but it will go more than a bit over your weight limit.

More than one person hereabouts has had to adjust their tow vehicle (meaning changing it) after buying a FGRV and finding out that it didn't/couldn't tow well with the existing TV.

Good Luck
A different perspective...

"Properly equipped" is of course an admonition from the manufacturers, and of course much of such is available aftermarket.

My truck is 13 years old and long past the 100,000 mark. It is better prepared now for towing than when it left the lot. better brakes, better shocks,better suspension, better tires etc.etc.

An extra couch in small trailers is somewhat overrated since 40% of the interior is already sleeping/seating space. We sold our LoveBug13 with front bunks solely because of the space that the couch robbed from the trailer.
With the bathroom/shower, closet, microwave and storage space, the 13 looks so much more complete inside.

Anything over 3000 pounds is more suited for a trailer park than for travel.
Room to sleep four and have a bathroom can be had in a 16 Scamp which can be way under 3000 pounds (by 20-25% or more), loaded for a trip.

Of course anyone should pick a travel trailer fit to tow and a vehicle which is up to the job. A little common sense and planning is better than the surprise of "having" to trade-in a too large travel trailer after buying it and finding it too large to tow.

All that you have said is sensible, I just wanted to voice an equally rational counterpoint.
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:07 PM   #47
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Ya But..... Ooops
The op has a load limit of 2000 lbs and the 16' Scamps in real world weights all weigh over that. A 3000 lb FGRV wasn't in the cards.
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Old 01-08-2014, 03:31 PM   #48
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Another Perspective

We own a 1991 Scamp 16. We travel 7.5 months a year. Our Scamp with many modifications and loaded for 7 months weighs 2600#s, 2400#s on the Scamps axle and 200#s on the Honda CRV's ball. (We always carry a half tank of water, empty grey and black tanks, one propane tank and one battery.)

I'm totally with Floyd that the number of miles on a vehicle are relatively meaningless; we have 210,000 miles on our 2004 Honda CRV and are still towing our Scamp all over the continent. It's the condition of the vehicle, not the age.

As to towability, certainly you may need to make a few improvements, particularly if your a hot weather, long hill tower, maybe adding a transmission cooler, really small bucks.

As to manufacturers tow rating, I'm one of the minority who ignores it. IN my mind recognizing that model year to model year ratings, seem to change with virtually no change in the hardware. As well country to country ratings are just as variable.

Since I'm not concerned about liability, I focus on ability. I used to have a Ford LTD, that beast could tow any of these fiberglass trailers with ease.

In my view since you own the car, I'd try towing the fiberglass trailer that meets your needs. Personally I think an appropriately laid out Scamp 16 would meet your interior needs and easily could weigh less than 2500#s.

Unless you need a new vehicle, a tow vehicle can cause many times more than a good used Scamp.
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Old 01-08-2014, 04:39 PM   #49
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Norm.... my buddy tows with an LTD, the predecessor to the Grand Marc. He doesn't like to spend a lot of money so always buys 10 year old cars and keeps them for 10 more years. Every year he tows the trailer from Canada to the Keys and back. Works for him.
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Old 01-08-2014, 05:36 PM   #50
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My Ford LTD was my last great American car. After that I bought a Ford Torino. The Torino need a transmission 'flashcube', absolutely my worse car ever.

WHat kind of trailer does your friend have?
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Old 01-08-2014, 05:50 PM   #51
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Norm... he has a 1972, 22' dual axle Airstream Argosy. He bought the Argosy new in 72 and still owns it today. Before the LTD he towed it with a 70's Dodge Diplomat.

This LTD passed us on the highway a few years ago and I snapped a shot. IMHO not an impressive set up but the guy was cruising along at a good clip.
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Old 01-08-2014, 07:58 PM   #52
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Trailer: 2014 Scamp 16 layout 4
SW Florida
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I'm ordering Scamp 16 layout 4. 1 gas tank and no A/C to keep weight as low as possible. Perhaps will replace factory 6 gal water heater with a tankless heater later to save more weight. Already installed Airlift 1000 (I really like resulting more hard ride, hitch ball sits 1" higher now). Going to order and install brake controller soon. The trailer should be ready for pick up sometime in the second half of February.

Factory transmission cooler in the car is pretty big in size, but if Scangauge II will show TF overheating, then I will add extra transmission cooler, it's pretty cheap and easy to install.
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Old 01-08-2014, 09:12 PM   #53
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The small tankless water heaters are not approved for RV use and you will find the one that is approved for RV use is very expensive. Wouldn't save that much weight anyway and you can wind up using a a lot of LP gas
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Old 01-09-2014, 07:10 AM   #54
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Sergey, A large part of the towing load is frontal area of the trailer. I would not go crazy on the weight.

We have only a single propane tank. It turns out that it's been more than adequate.

We do not have a roof top air conditioner but dohave a home air conditioner in our closet, again adequate.

We have the factory water heater but have added an electric heating element. We always carry water, a full hot water heater and a half full water tank.

We do not have an awning, primarily because wind can snap it off if you're not there to pay attention to wind and weather
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Old 01-09-2014, 12:29 PM   #55
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I would order with AC inside cabinet mounted instead of on roof if possible. Having camped in the south and west with and without AC I would say it is worth the weight. Inside mounting you give up storage but you remove wind drag from a roof mount which as Norm pointed out is a big factor.

AC is not an easy aftermarket add in. For example if not ordered with roof AC the shell will not be reinforced to support the weight so adding one later is really pretty expensive custom work.

Sounds like there are several examples of heavy towing with similar vehicle to yours, if you start out trying short trips and get a feel for how it all works out in your specific trailer vehicle combination with your driving there is not much loss by giving it a try.

Worst case you find you need to replace the car at some point and take towing your camper into account when shopping for the replacement vehicle. If you find towing with the car uncomfortable or it feels too close to the edge you might just go shopping earlier.

I would suggest NOT doing what my brother-in-law did, poured a lot of money into suspension, brakes, cooling and new rear end for his pickup truck which was right at the tow limit for the trailer. After all that he still found it was a PITA to tow with and sold the truck to buy one better matched to his trailer. Took a loss on all the money he sunk into trying to make it work.
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Old 01-09-2014, 12:40 PM   #56
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All modern Scamp trailers are roof A/C ready, the roof is reinforced for A/C and 110V wires are put behind ceiling cloth. Scamp doesn't offer wall mount A/C.

I live in Florida and will travel to the north, furnace is more important to me than A/C :-)
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