Barb in toronto...new member - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-13-2015, 05:58 PM   #21
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Your first paragraph is a misleading statement. You have changed the words "manufacturers towing limits" to mean "safe limits of the TV and rig as a whole", the latter suggesting to ignore manufacturer towing limits if an individual or a third party alleges that it is safe to do so. Safe towing weight may be less than the manufacturers specified towing limits, that I do not know, but not more than those limits.


This is the second time that you have said that there are trailers out there that "do not tow well" and that there are a number of TV's that have "an overly generous tow rating". As requested before, would you please name some of each that apply to this group, and the basis for that allegation? Otherwise, mentioning it is nothing less than fear mongering.


I'm sorry if some feel that the manufacturers towing limit gets in the way of what they want to do, but it is what it is....


BTW: Who is "Buddy". I thought that the OP's name was Barb.



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Old 08-13-2015, 06:24 PM   #22
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Bob,

There are a number of people who are comfortable towing over the manufactures limit. Like every motorcycle that tows a trailer. I am fairly sure that there is no recommended tow capacity on any motorcycle. Yet I see them towing trailers. If you are counting, make me number six. I suspect that there are more, but they don't want your finger wagging. You are clearly very concious of rules. I think of rules as what you follow, when you don't want to think for yourself. Mostly I follow rules, but there are exceptions.

You talk about automotive engineers like their word is directly from god. I have worked with engineers extensively. How I think of engineers is as a liability sink. It is their job to ensure that all applicable codes are being met. If not, they are in trouble. Especially if someone dies. Consequently, they tend to be very conservative. I was impressed to see that the Smart car has a 500 pound tow capacity. Yet my Firefly, which weighs as much, has none. Does this make sense? Not to me. Not that I have a hitch receiver on the fly. I actually tow with either a Savana, or a Safari, lots of tow capacity.

Manufactures in North America have another reason to limit their published towing recommendations. They would like to sell larger, and more expensive vehicles. I think this is the primary driver for the manufactures recommended tow limit.

Please recognise that your approach, though not wrong, is not the only valid approach.
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Old 08-13-2015, 06:50 PM   #23
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I think the problem here is that newbies ask if they can tow a certain trailer with a certain vehicle. And, there are a few here that say, "sure, go for it, I do".
And, then Bob and others jump in with warnings about stuff like tongue weight and brakes, and tow limitations that need to be considered.
The thread degenerates and instead of learning, the newbie becomes the object of a p*ssing match.
All that said. I'm with Bob.
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Old 08-13-2015, 07:03 PM   #24
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The majority of comments on the topic are usually for the edification of newbies who are totally unaware of manufacturers towing limits, much less the realistic limits of their vehicles. That said, I don't think that it's fair to the newbie, or the others on the road around them to take a laissez faire attitude about towing limits.


And I don't subscribe to any of the conspiracy theories about how limits are set. The new SAE standards are at least providing a guideline to obviate those claims.


All that said, there are a lot of drivers out there that I am sure you wouldn't want to trust you and you families life to because they elected to "Think for themselves" rather than follow established rules.


#1 Being those DUI drivers that elected to think for themselves... #2 Being those texting or talking on Cell Phones, #3 being those that don't wear safety belts....the list can almost be endless.



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Old 08-13-2015, 07:06 PM   #25
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...Toyota Matrix4 cylinders, 1.8L.
Randy, nice! .....and taking a couple bikes on a camping trip is icing on the cake.

Re camping with bikes... we never leave home without them.
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Old 08-13-2015, 10:16 PM   #26
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Ahh it seems that any mention of a vehicle results in a "tow rating debate" even if no one said they planned to tow with it.

It's so interesting to me that you are coming from a Minnie Winnie to an egg camper. I had suspected that most people buying eggs were, like me, coming from a pop-up camper (or tents) but maybe that is wrong. Motorhomes, like boats, are big expenses.. and a smaller fiberglass trailer is much more financially friendly (but still an expense).

So tell us what trailer you are looking at? Escape maybe? Perhaps only the 13 footers might work with your car (subject to further research) but coming from a 22+ footer I would think you would want a 16 or 17. I found the 13 footer a little cramped for even one person.

Welcome and GL in your search.
I really liked the Bigfoot I saw at the rally near Coburg in the spring. There were a couple 17 foot and a 21 foot. I would like to full time but am more likely initially go for 5-6 months each year as I love my garden and want to be in it in the summer. I also like to travel in spring and fall when the garden is not as intensive, the parks are not as busy and it is cooler. I want to go to a fibre glass trailer because of the longevity and general economics. Minnie Winnie is a wonderful RV but it is another motor to look after and being stick built it is a lot more maintenance and it depreciates. I spent 4 months in it last winter and the space was great so I am sure a 17 foot would be perfect and require less of an investment in tow vehicle and trailer. The 21 foot was amazing and I really loved it but I am sure it is too big. I have never towed anything except when I took a day long seminar and test drove a number of vehicle and trailer combos in London at Canam. Airstream is out of the price market though.

Thank-you for you comments. barb
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Old 08-14-2015, 07:07 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Barb in Toronto View Post
I really liked the Bigfoot I saw at the rally near Coburg in the spring. I have never towed anything except when I took a day long seminar and test drove a number of vehicle and trailer combos in London at Canam. Airstream is out of the price market though.

Thank-you for you comments. barb
I too checked out many Bigfoots in my day and have a fondness for them.

Many of us have had the chance to attend the above mentioned towing seminars and the test drives were the highlight of the day. It was certainly a positive learning experience. No doubt taking a seminar like this is a valued asset in understanding the bigger picture with towing dynamics, far beyond what is read in a basic tow manual.

Good gently used trailer can be found in the 5 to 10K dollar amount. That includes glass eggs, airstreams, and of course stickies.
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Old 08-14-2015, 07:55 PM   #28
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I've not seen a 13' Bigfoot but would like to. My first trailer was a 13' Casita which I loved. We only upgraded because at the time we wanted to be able to take children camping too.
Yes, my 17' Bigfoot is heavier than some. At a CAT scale last year it weighed about 3500 lb. It's more trailer than I really need now, but I don't think I could ever give up the great refrigerator/freezer. It's so much better than those in the smaller trailers. I love not carrying a cooler and never needing to buy ice.
As to where to find a used one, they don't come up often and you never know where. I just got lucky. The classifides on this forum is about the best place to look, and look, and look,......

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Old 08-14-2015, 09:13 PM   #29
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Thank-you Walt...how long have you had your 17'? I am planning on spending a few months at a time in the trailer so want a bit more space and I am with you on fridge sizes. I like to make a few things a bit ahead and freeze them. Also sometimes there is not a convient store around. Barb
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Old 08-15-2015, 09:03 AM   #30
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Barb, with a tow rating on your Matrix of only 1,500 lbs., I personally would NOT recommend trying to tow a 17' Bigfoot with it (or any other 16'-19" trailer)! Our 1987 Bigfoot weighs in at around 2,900 to 3,000 lbs when fully loaded to travel. We tow with a Honda Ridgline which has a 5,000 lb towing capacity. If you keep your Matrix for a tow vehicle you will be limited to the smaller 13' trailers and even then might be very close to your tow limit. Good luck in your search!

Oh, you might want to check out the thread titled "Trailer weights in the real world" here: http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...rld-43010.html which has a database of the actual weights of people's trailers. Weights listed in ads are often wildly optimistic and off base. The only way to know what a trailer weighs is to actually weigh it!
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Old 08-15-2015, 01:22 PM   #31
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Thank-you kathy...the site you sent to me was very informative. Quite the variation in weights. I know I cannot tow with the Toyoto if I get larger then 13-15 it seems. I am set on the 17" so I will require a tow vehicle as well. Thank-you for being helpful. With the list of loaded trailers on the list looks like a tow ability of 3500 should be good for the 17" bigfoot if I find one. Now I need to look at the variety of vehicles with that ability...I tend to be cautious and prefer to be on the big size being conscious of the everyday use as well. I like to keep my cars till they die a natural death.

I will try googling tow vehicles of 3500 pounds...should work...love google. Barb
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Old 08-15-2015, 01:43 PM   #32
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I have a vehicle rated to tow 3500 but if I had it to do over again I would get one rated at 5000. More safety margin is good, up to a point (maybe 50% over for a SWAG). But don't forget to look at Gross Combined Vehicle Rating (max of tug and trailer together) and tongue weight limit. In my case the GCVR can easily go over with the trailer still at 3500 or less. GCVR is sometimes a little hard to find but should be in the owner's manual, usually found online.
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Old 08-15-2015, 02:55 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by Barb in Toronto View Post
Thank-you kathy...the site you sent to me was very informative. Quite the variation in weights. I know I cannot tow with the Toyoto if I get larger then 13-15 it seems. I am set on the 17" so I will require a tow vehicle as well. Thank-you for being helpful. With the list of loaded trailers on the list looks like a tow ability of 3500 should be good for the 17" bigfoot if I find one. Now I need to look at the variety of vehicles with that ability...I tend to be cautious and prefer to be on the big size being conscious of the everyday use as well. I like to keep my cars till they die a natural death.

I will try googling tow vehicles of 3500 pounds...should work...love google. Barb
Be very careful in looking for/at a 17' Bigfoot. The later 17.5' BigFoot looks about the same but it has gained major weight in the process of getting it's all season insulation and a frame change. The BigFoot peeps will chime in with the changeover point I am sure, but the later 17.5 will hit 4000 lbs in a B.C. Minute.



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Old 08-15-2015, 04:50 PM   #34
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I know I cannot tow with the Toyoto if I get larger then 13-15 it seems. I am set on the 17" so I will require a tow vehicle as well. I will try googling tow vehicles of 3500 pounds...should work...love google. Barb
Sounds good Barb. Sounds like you have a good feel for what you want.

There are many vehicles out there that are more than adequate to tow 3,500lbs or more. Since many of us here have been researching the subject for years run some of your favourite vehicles by us. Are you interested in an SUV, truck, Mini Van or car?? Import or domestic? What are your top 3 interests?

Funny thing... I had a chance to look at a pristine, low mileage older Jaguar sedan last week. It had a 4,000lb tow rating.
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Old 08-15-2015, 07:29 PM   #35
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Hi Barb:
Interesting reading on this thread. You attended our EggFest in Grafton in May with your Mini Winnie and we understand why you like it. We originally looked for a motorized RV but like you, we had concerns about looking after two engines. Then we found our 13'boler in a field and we have adapted to it's more confined size very well.
We purchased a 3 season 27.5' Dutchmen trailer with lots of room but we didn't like it at all. Went out last week in the boler and realized we were "home" where we belonged.
Just as an aside. Never trade safety for desire. Life is way too short and can be gone just that quickly. So good luck, be safe out there and it was nice to have met you.
Vivian & Paul Parkin
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Old 08-15-2015, 07:38 PM   #36
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Barb
I've had my Bigfoot for 2 1/2 years. Its on-the-road weight is around 3600 lbs with empty holding tanks. I would not be comfortable with a TV having less than 5000 lb towing capacity. From my experience I've learned that published towing capacities are very loose. I've had some that tow effortlessly at their rating and others that feel like they are struggling at 3/4 rating. So I feel the need to treat them conservatively.

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Old 08-15-2015, 08:22 PM   #37
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Barb
From my experience I've learned that published towing capacities are very loose. I've had some that tow effortlessly at their rating and others that feel like they are struggling at 3/4 rating. So I feel the need to treat them conservatively.Walt
There is a lot of truth to what you say Walt. We towed our 23 with a 150HP mini van (3,500 tow rated) and it worked well for many years. Then we had professionals set up a 250 HP mid sized sedan (tow rated much less) and it towed the 23 even better. Like you reported one really can't relate the tow rating to actual towing performance. Researching the actual towing performance is key to getting a good one.
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Old 08-16-2015, 09:43 AM   #38
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Barb, I agree with Gordon. We too started out with a TV rated to tow 4,000 lbs, a Ford Aerostar Van. We liked the van, but it wasn't up to the job. It could do it, but not do it well. I think you have to also pay attention to the size of the engine, torque and things like that. Maybe some of the folks who know more about that stuff can chime in on that. Our Ridgeline is a much better TV for our Bigfoot.
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Old 08-16-2015, 10:05 AM   #39
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Barb, I agree with Gordon. We too started out with a TV rated to tow 4,000 lbs, a Ford Aerostar Van. We liked the van, but it wasn't up to the job. It could do it, but not do it well. I think you have to also pay attention to the size of the engine, torque and things like that. Maybe some of the folks who know more about that stuff can chime in on that. Our Ridgeline is a much better TV for our Bigfoot.
The Towing Pro's have not been kind re the old Aerostars either. Like many other vehicles with substantial tow ratings the Aerostars were a flop. My buddy's friend towed a small lightweight sticky with one and on his first trip out his whole rig ended up in the ditch upside down. They never did figure out what really went wrong but he didn't buy another Aerostar to tow with.

On the hand the Ford Freestar van that replaced the Aero, with only a 3,500lb tow rating turned out to be a stellar tow vehicle. We know that 3 or 4 of the leading RV dealers in the area here set up about 500 Freestars for towing and a fraction were towing smallish, lightweight trailers.

The Ridgeline is a nice vehicle. Is's also interesting to note the lower rated Oddy van seems to respond better as a TV. At least that is what I have read on the towing reports.
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Old 08-16-2015, 11:48 AM   #40
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More has been written about tow vehicles and weights on this site than any other single subject. There is a lot of good and not so good advise dispensed on the subject via this site.

One simple absolute is bigger is better when it comes to towing...bigger horsepower...bigger torque pounds...all to get the job done right.
Always opt for 10-20% extra when selecting tow power...you won't be sorry!

Happy Camping
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