Our maximum tow weight
is 3600, maximum tongue weight
We have a 73 amerigo
, dry weight around 1900, packed weight about 2150, 2250. We wanted to stay well below maximums. Tongue weight about 260. Tows great, no prob. at all. Reduces gas mileage about 4-5 mpg.
Give yourself time to get used to the numbers, they're not really all that hard. Dry weight means tanks are empty, no food or clothing inside, no water yet. EMPTY, like you'd get it from a dealer. Everything you add, propane
, water, food, clothing, blankets, books, games, etc. adds weight. Tongue weight can be measured with a simple scale (if under 300 lbs or your scale's maximum) OR using two scales--you can find the method online. OR go to a place that weighs things and pay them.
You really don't want to play games with trying to haul too much. Some people swear by weight distribution hitches, some people refuse to consider them. Many here use anti-sway bars but that's not the same thing. And you cannot defy physics, a heavier trailer has momentum that your tow vehicle may not be able to overcome if you've over done.
Buy a bit lighter than a safety zone you decide on. We didn't want to go within 1000 pounds of our maximum and made it. We're well under 2600. The tongue weight is right at our chosen max (we could go to 360 but I don't want to!) == and it tows very well.
You have enough towing capacity for a Scamp
13 for sure; probably a 16 too. Don't think the numbers lie. They don't. Many here advise you get a tow vehicle to go with the trailer, not the other way around...we already had the mini-van and were delighted to find a trailer that would work for weight.
I think you can do it, too. But DON"T take the seller's word for what the thing weighs. Often sellers of used rigs will take the original advertising as "proven and true" when in fact it's just a sales pitch. OUR trailer supposedly could be towed by a Ford Pinto! I don't know about that!
Make them get it weighed, find out what was included (propane in the tanks, all their camping gear, or totally stripped--) and get some official printed paper as to the weight with a responsible person's name on it...as weight is very important.
Once you're within your weight range, however, your choice of 13 or 16 feet has more to do with your ability to control it when driving forwards and backwards than anything else.
Go to the Scamp
manufacturing webside and find out what they weigh! Trailer weights in the Real World is a GOOD guide...there are lots of trailer types that Didn't make it onto that list, but many DID.
Then...don't overpack! Don't put your Harley-Davidson inside your trailer and think it won't matter! Don't attach a huge rear-bumper carrier and add 5-gallon buckets of water and tools back there and think it won't matter. It does!
Don't move your fresh water tank to the back of your rig and think it won't matter. It's like a see-saw with the axle
as the pivot point--one end goes UP, one end goes DOWN.
Final word of what's probably TMI: Tongue weight should be between 10% and 15% of your total trailer weight. Our trailer weighs about 2200; tongue weight should be between 220 and 330. Ours is at 260 generally the way we pack, and that's perfect.
A 3500 trailer should have a tongue weight between 350 and 525. I'm betting your tow vehicle cannot handle a 525 tongue weight. (!) You pretty much MUST have the tongue weight at LEAST at 10% of the trailer's total weight. That keeps the whole thing stable when going down the road--and up hills and down. NEVER, EVER, EVER pack your trailer rear-heavy! NEVER!
(I think we did that with our old Aloha back when...and it bucked and fought us every mile, scaring the heck out of me...now we know so much better!) If you pack rear-heavy, the trailer can lose control, start fishtailing and you can have a wreck.
Wishing you happy egg hunting and happy trails!