Reasons I decided on a 5th wheel:
You can take a truck anywhere to get it repaired, quickly and cheaply. Try that with a motor home.
New truck (nice one, Ford King Ranch, gas) and a 30 ft. 5th wheel is about $80-90K. That will maybe buy a moderately priced MH, but then you need a tow-behind to get around town. So the 5th/truck is likely to be cheaper to buy.
5th wheel slides extend much farther, as no one is going to be walking about while traveling. That, plus no engine/cab area, means more space. Either offers a traveling bathroom and refrigerator.
I get 8.5 to 9 mpg even with gas when towing. Ask the MH operators how that compares. Diesel would probably be around 10 to 11.
More storage with a 5th.
I'm no expert. I've always stored with slides in. I have slide covers, and I think extended effects of wind, rain and dirt on the covers would be a negative. I also think the sealing of the trailer is superior with the slides closed (keep out bugs, hornets, etc.)
But I DO open the vent in the bathroom (it has an after-market cover; can't think of the brand at the moment) because I think it is important to encourage the inside of the trailer temp to be as similar to the outside as feasible to minimize or eliminate condensation.
No, Allworth, no one put a gun to my head. But when you are stuck with no (second) spare, hundreds of miles from home, in an area with few alternatives and minimal phone service, with plans and schedules and people counting on you . . . sometimes you need to take the expedient route.
I have written a few times about the joys of towing with gas, but that isn't my intent this time. It's really to ask a question I haven't seen discussed here that has been on my mind . . .
Others have described the transmission temps they experience on this forum, and with my low-mileage F250 (2012) pulling a trailer about 11K pounds up the side of some mountains, I've seen much higher transmission temps. Even when the ambient temps have been quite pleasant. I've wondered why that might be. Frankly, I wondered if some people were BSing us. But now I have a theory:
So, going up the mountain, my engine is turning maybe 4500 to 5000 rpm's, sometimes a bit more, sometimes for fairly long periods. Everyone says that isn't a problem for a gas engine, and I believe that is so. BUT . . . a diesel will be running roughly half the rpms, which means that input shaft/gears are turning much closer to the speed of output shaft/gears with diesel. There is quite a mismatch in input/output speeds with a gas engine, which means, I should think, more gears and busier gears moving quite rapidly. It would seem to me that could result in significantly higher oil temps.
Does this make sense?
I've been reading these tire threads for years. Twice now, I've had to replace tires while on the road, far from home. Right now, my trailer is in the shop to repair $2,000 of damages from cheap Chinese tires. And what is on the trailer now? Another set of cheap Chinese tires. I lost two tires in the same day, and something had to be done to get back on the road. That's all I could find within 50 miles of where the second failure occurred.
I was planning to get a new set in the spring, and research better tires then. I thought sure those two-year-old tires were good for one more 500 mile trip . . .
Chlorine is a gas, unless pressurized, like propane. Unless your tank is hermetically sealed, chlorine will dissipate, and fairly rapidly at summer temperatures.
btw, Bromine is often used for hot tubs because it dissipates at a slower rate than chlorine at higher temperatures. Just fyi, not terribly relevant here.
I often leave water in my fresh water tank all summer. But I seldom if ever would drink it, and I run water for ice-making through a filter at the faucet. Actually, 9 times out of 10, I use full hookups, which is why water could be in the holding tank all summer.
I have a 3/4 ton, and I agree your rig needs more. A one ton should do very well. You need a diesel, sorry to say.
Short story, you coming from a MH: I traveled across the Dakotas with my 5th, and friends in a MH, with two days of 50 mph crosswinds all the way to Montana. The driver of the MH was constantly making large steering wheel corrections, while I in my F250 was driving with one hand leaning against my knee. With the pivot point right over the axle, the strongest wind creates little to no directional input.
I pulled a 10K lb dry, estimated 11K 5th wheel from Indiana to San Francisco a year ago, through Denver, New Mexico, Colorado again, Utah twice, etc. It pulled fine. Ever go up/down a 9-degree mountain? I did. I was more nervous coming down than going up, without question. You won't go up a hill like that and hold 65, but 50? Probably.
But you're significantly heavier. I'd say it depends upon where you plan to go. Most people don't go that far or that often with their trailers. Me, I've gone over 30K miles in 5 years. I'm on the 3rd set of tires. If you are just going into a neighboring state, or over the the lake, etc I'd say you'll be fine. If you're touring the country, I'm not so sure.
I got a 4X4 because it came with the model I wanted. Couldn't really see any practical benefit, and in the first year I never used it.
But on two occasions this year, once in Atlanta at Stone Mountain and once in Indiana at a state campground, I was given a spot that required me to back up, uphill, on gravel to hook up to my 5th wheel trailer. Both times, I started to dig holes in 2-wheel, but when put into 4-wheel, it backed up perfectly with no spinning. Those big truck tires can dig quite a hole in a single second!
Anyway, glad I have a 4X4, but if faced with the choice vs the expense, I'm not sure what I'd do.
I bought two nylon disks when I ordered my trailer five years ago. At least 30,000 miles since, on my third set of tires, and the disk looks like it'll last another dozen years or so. I don't remember where I put the 2nd disk; guess it doesn't really matter.
I get 8.5 to almost 10 when towing depending on terrain pulling 11k pound 5th. You have a late model truck with electronic ignition; I have found a nearly 10% improvement with 89 octane when towing, but no improvement when not under load.
One more idea: I carry a 5 gal tank in the back so I don't sweat the gas gage so much. I've never needed it, but that extra 45 miles of range helps me relax. Dd the same when I had a diesel.
I think dash-mounted GPS's are becoming obsolete. There are so many smartphone/pad GPS's available, many for free, that have regular map updates performed automatically. And they seem, to me anyway, superior to GPS's.
On my most recent 2,000 mile trip two weeks ago, I tried out three of them: Google Maps, MotionX and GPS Copilot. I liked Copilot best. It loads the entire US in so it doesn't have to access the internet at all while traveling. Only once for just a few miles, was there an issue with recent road work leaving me driving "no where" on no roads. All GPS's do that from time to time.
I would like MotionX best, except that it wants near-continuous access to the internet, which isn't very feasible. Except maybe around big cities.
I was using all of them on an iPad, btw. My phone is too small for my old eyes, but the iPad is great. Oh, and it has a car/truck/RV option that lets you establish height limits and specific road preferences. If you want verbal prompts, which I don't, then the 'free' GPS costs, like, less than $10 per year. And again, all updates are free.
Aux tank is a good but expensive option. I carry a 5gallon container in the truck bed, rigged so it can't move about. It gave me the satisfaction of having emergency range, and after 4-5 yrs and maybe 25 K miles, I never actually needed it. But I still regularly use it as my 'security blanket.'
Well, Dad/admitted GM employee: I see you are at least partly right: the state and federal investigations are targeted mostly at the dealerships that are producing fake recalls.
The article ends with: "The auto industry was already learning how to turn recall lemons into lemonade, but GM under CEO Mary Barra is teaching an advanced seminar on the subject."
added: I wasn't pointing a finger at GM, but you as a GM employee are accomplishing that quite well. I wonder why you chose to drop that part of your ID in later posts.
And I should note that the article was making many points, among them, that cars in general are getting so good, it is getting hard to get people back into the dealership. So maybe this recall thing is just part of the natural evolution of car sales. (my own words/interpretation, since you like to get so technical, Dad.)
I don't know how to link on my ipad, but I found the article. The author is Holman Jenkins and it is dated July 4th.
With that, you should be able to Google it, but you may need a WSJ subscription to read more than the 1st few sentences.
The title is: Your car recalled? Buy a new one!
I read an article, I think it was in the Wall Street Journal, just a few days ago. Part of the reason for all the recalls is to get people into the dealership, where while they are torquing some "loose" nut holding the windshield wiper, a salesman will try to get you into the showroom.
Apparently they are selling a lot of new cars this way. The article suggested a government investigation into bogus recalls. So that, plus the earlier mentioned "excess of caution" probably explains the many recalls . . .