New to 5th wheelers

Discussion in 'Fifth Wheelers' started by jstvj, May 31, 2009.

  1. jstvj

    jstvj Read Only Funster

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    Hello everyone

    I am somewhat confused as to the capability of tow vehicles and would appreciate advice please. What vehicles (models) would be suitable to tow a 5th wheeler with the following speca GVWR 3826 8435lbs GAVR all 3175 7000lbs per axle (whatever they mean ?)

    I was told that a half ton truck would be suitable, what is a half tons truck ?

    Probably to some these are stupid questions, but I need to start somewhere.

    Thanks:cry:
     
  2. Geo

    Geo Trader - Funster

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    Hi welcome to the fun site
    We have a growing and active 5er membership on here and there has been some discussion on tow vehicles, someone will be along with some authority on the subject im sure
    If you dont want to wait use our search button
    Geo
     
  3. jstvj

    jstvj Read Only Funster

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    Thanks Geo,

    I have read the previous threads with interest, but it all gets a bit complicated.

    I really don't want to go as big as an american truck, due to the high fuel consumption, but need something that will be adequade for the job. The problems is finding approrpiate weight specifcations for the various vehicles available, especially in respect of towing etc. Is there not a source that provides a list of pickups and their towing capabilities please ?
     
  4. Geo

    Geo Trader - Funster

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    I will keep it simple, what I have gleaned from other posts, is your first move is to decide on what 5er you want. then buy a truck to suit it buy the truck based on MPG and you are seriously restricting what 5er you can tow
    If you buy an American 5er the its its an almost given, its going to take an American truck to pull it comfortably
    If your looking at the smaller,lighter European 5ers then a Jap pick up will surfice
    Hang on till some experianced 5ers get back on line, they are all out using theirs I imagine
    I drive an A class RV so MPG isnt one of my personal worries:cry:(oh yes it is) but what the heck Id rather go broke buying fuel than be the richest guy in the cemetary:Rofl1::Rofl1:
    Geo
     
  5. robrobc

    robrobc Read Only Funster

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    In answer to your question there is a list of towing capacities for pick ups but you do need to check carefully as the towing capacity is different depending on how the trailer is hitched to the tow vehicle. The obvious attraction of fifth wheelers (and there are many :BigGrin::BigGrin:) is that by having the "connection point" in front of the driven wheels the towing capability of the pick up is greatly increased.

    I understand your reservations about US pick ups and there is, and I guess always will be an ongoing debate, sometimes heated,:Sad: about the advantages of US versus Euro pick up. You need to make your mind up based on facts, that will only happen by talking with as many people as you can whilst at the same time listing your priorities for your pick up. For example.........

    1. Is acceleration important to you?
    2. Where do you intend to travel, UK or Europe or both?
    3. Will you make only one 5th wheel purchase or might you buy again?

    We are all different, no one has the one size fits all answer, just keep smiling and keep asking. Oh, btw, if you want to know more from me drop me a pm of your questions.

    Rob
     
  6. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    hi.. it all depends on how much weight is put on the pin . you need to know the wt of truck its train wt.max. wt. of trailer. if its putting less than 20%of the trailer wt on to tow truck. we need more info to give the correct answer. i pull a mini artic,more than 20%of trailer wt super impossed on truck. lots of 5ers are only using the hitch with minimum wt so are only pulling a caravan in a different way. see if youcan get more specs of the trailer you would like.. its easier to have the wt in kg. as euro rules use kg. i must be getting younger too slow to work in p.s.p.:Rofl1:
     
  7. Geo

    Geo Trader - Funster

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    Im sure you meant well But
    I dont think Pms are the answer Rob:RollEyes:
    we are all here to learn, and why would anyone only want one persons imput, thats what makes forums enjoyable, if a poster finds one persons info more valuble than others he will surly take it,
    No offence intended just an observation, we could finish up with 6000 memers pm ing one another and Jim and Bryan would be out of a job:Doh:
     
  8. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    remember yank trucks have big motors but noy always a big payload. also in america the rules are different. i now use a mitsubishi canter 6.3ton double cab. reduced train wt to 8.250kg.returns about16 to the gallon towing a 20ft trailer gross wt train about 7.500kg. 4 litre diesel engine .not quick but goes most places n more. more wt on pin gives more traction.
     
  9. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    to be quite honest i dont think it makes a vast difference between a euro pickup or an american one when it comes to fuel consumption.

    i dont have a 5er but iv towed a 1600kg caravan with my 2.5ltr turbo diesel hilux and my fuel dropped from 35mpg solo to 22mpg towing. i reckon towing a 2.5 to 3 tonne 5er would bring it down near to single figures anyway, if its capable of towing 3000kg

    the 'little' engine is having to work so hard compered to a 6ltr yank motor and the manual gearbox was constantly being used to keep pace.

    thats why i sold it:RollEyes::Doh: the van not the pickup.:BigGrin:
     
  10. jstvj

    jstvj Read Only Funster

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    Thank you all for your very helpful input. RobRobc, have you the web address of the site that give a list of towing capacities ? I do accept and understand the limitations, bearing in mind the manner of towing, but at least that would be a start and give me some idea of the approximate capabilities of most of the pickup available.

    Now, I wasn't being entirely honest with you all, because I didn't want you to think that I had put the cart before the horse, or to be more exact the fiver before the pickup, but basically I have.

    I have purchased a Ameri-Camp LE 28 foor long (very nice), which is advertised as being light and capable of being towed by an half ton truck. Unfortunately there was no literature with it and I have scoured the net for specifications. The only figues I have is what is printed on the tow hitch as quoted in my first post. I towed it with my Nissan Cabstar (well the Chinese copy, Yuejin) 2237cc petrel/lpg, kerb weight 2067Kgs,payload 1053kgs, Max Laden Mass 3120 (That's the trouble everyone appears to have different abbreviations for the same thing, which is very confusing).

    Anyway, the Yuejin towed the the Ameri-Camp surprisingly well, but was very slow on the slightest incline and I had to gear down to third (30mph) or even 2nd (20mph) on slightly steeper hills. The trouble occurred when I reached Cornwall, plenty of hills and I sensed the Yuejin was struggling. Finally there was a strong burning smell (clutch I think) and I gave the vehicle a rest. After starting off again I noticed that the engine warning light came on and I am trying to find out the reason for this.

    To sum up, I want to go full timing in the UK and abroad, and have come to the conclusion that the Yuejin is not man enough for sustained use. Again I dont want to go overboard, but want to be sure that the towing vehicle is capable of the job without any stress.

    Thanks again, all
     
  11. IanRS

    IanRS Read Only Funster

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    Hi,
    To answer your question "What is a half ton truck" on the yank trucks a half ton is Ford F150, Dodge Ram 1500, Chevy/GMC 1500, threequarter ton is Ford F250, Dodge Ram 2500, Chevy/GMC 2500, 1 Ton is Ford F350, Dodge Ram 3500, Chevy/GMC 3500. I hope this helps a little with your quest to go full timing.

    Ian
     
  12. robrobc

    robrobc Read Only Funster

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    I agree with what you are saying, this is meant to be, and is in my opinion one of the best all inclusive forums on the web so I know that you will understand what is coming :Eeek::Eeek: and please excuse my rant here.................but I am fed up with people passing comment on what others have purchased, wishing to open up their own calder leisure rooms, yadder yadder............I do try to be as objective as possible with all my comments/observations and will gladly help all and sundry out but get fed up with some smart arse telling me I have done it all wrong.......witness my last trip to Devon where Mr." Know it all" told me I was illegal with my 5'er.when I am clearly not.

    Sorry about that..................but that feels better.:BigGrin::BigGrin::BigGrin::BigGrin:

    I am not suggesting that people are like that in here, more that just of late that seems to be all that I have bumped in to.

    Rant over.

    Back to weights etc................

    For Ford Trucks......I would suggest starting here
    Ford Truck Enthusiasts Forums - Ford truck and SUV owners and enthusiasts Community And Information Source.

    For Dodge and Chevrolet just replace the word Ford with either. These forums cover just about every eventuality, it is worth also looking at the Nissan Web Site for the US.
    This gives the towing capabilities for the Nissan Titan, that is the bigger "brother" to the Navarra. There are some structural differences in so far as the Titan has larger stronger chassis rails and a larger engine but you start to get the idea.
    The Titan is a 1/4to 1/2 ton ton truck in my opinion.
    The Ford, Dodge, Chevrolet, GMC trucks come in 1/4, 1/2 and 1 Ton sizes.
    The one you need depends on the weight you intend to pull (and stop :BigGrin:.........hopefully)

    Looking at jstvj and his towing situation then referring back to the US web sites a "150" denomination truck would seem to be more than capable of towing his 5'er.

    Obviously anything larger will pull it with ease, I opted for a "250" and I have shown my "numbers" below, as these are what influenced my decision to go large so to speak. :Smile:

    I have a Rockwood 2009 Signature Ultra Lite 5'er which I tow with a Ford F250

    The numbers are as follows.5'er..............GVWR 8257 Lbs (3753 Kgs).
    Dry Weight 6307 Lbs (2867 Kgs)
    Hitch Weight 1061 Lbs (482 Kgs)
    Axle Weight 5246 Lbs (2384 Kgs)

    Ford F250 .......GVWR 3500 Kgs (plated at time of importation to maximum allowable under PLG regulations)


    So the important number which is total train weight which amounts to 3753 + 3500 = 7253 Kgs.

    How much can a Ford F250 Tow, 5'er coupled, with the 6000 V8 Diesel the Maximum is 16,884 Lbs (7674 Kgs)

    I have plenty of power to both Tow and stop the 5'er.

    Fuel economy...........when towing I get 13.4 US MPG (this is approx 15mpg UK as the US gallon is smaller) The numbers when not towing I do not know. :Doh:

    I hope this helps jstvj


    Rob
     
  13. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    hi ,rob ,,why was the truck plated at 3.500kg couldn,t you have a heavier wt. then you get cheaper road fund licence n other benefits.shame your trailer dont put more weight on pin could be plating n test excempt .i have a friend whose yank should have a 4.500kg gvw. but was also plated here at 3.500 .not ministry plate i add.
     
  14. robrobc

    robrobc Read Only Funster

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    vwalan

    I am not too sure why they insist on 3500kg maximum plated weight, by they I mean Dept Of Transport. I purchased the pick up second hand, already imported in to the UK and already "down plated", maybe someone else can shed light on why down plate, tacho's maybe????, SVA Approval maybe????, Construction and Use regs maybe????

    Rob
     
  15. Sundowners

    Sundowners Funster Life Member

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    Hi,
    Welcome to the best place for motorhome (& 5er) info.
    I agree with most of the posters on this topic.
    We tow a 32ft 5er with a Ram 3500 with the Cummins 5.9ltr motor.
    We get 15 mpg (GB gal.) towing, we run with the trucks (56mph) or on empty main roads 60 or just above, we feel comfortable at that speed, and the fuel disapears a bit quick if we go much faster !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It is very rare to slow down on hills----------- that is where we usually overtake !! We get about 25mpg not towing -----------if we stay at 60!!
    The 3500 is geared lower than the 2500 and the springs are designed to carry more weight, other than that they are the same, (although old 3500's like ours are duallys,) the 1500 is a lighter truck and does not have the Cummins engine.
    You have to decide how much money to spend on a truck, and also whether to go for diesel, petrol or petrol/LPG, also if LHD is a problem.
    I personally think that a Jap. truck is not man enough to pull your 5er when fulltiming, (but then we have a Yank truck)
    I like "vwallen's" idea of using a small(ish) forward control truck but , we didn't go that way because campsites have a job to accept that it is just a caravan, I think they believe they are from a different community (not just "normal" tourists).
    Keep us up to date with what you finish up with (there are different choices not necessarily wrong ones)
    Nigel & Pamala
     
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