I have been thinking of upgrading to a newer trailer, and I have seen the above mentioned phrase repeatedly.
Would like opinions.
1st, here is our situation
Tow vehicle is 2010 GMC Sierra quad cab 4x4 w/ 5.3 engine and tow pkg.
3.42 rear axle ratio.
Currently have a 2003 29ft Jayco Qwest 256d
looking at 2011 Eagle Super Lite 318RLS 33ft trailer
We live in North Iowa and camp within 150 mile radius (mostly 50 mile)
Is this reasonably doable?
Really depends on the details about both truck and trailer. the TERM "half ton" is really not often used by manufacturers these days as it tells little about the truck. If the RV is listed as "half ton towable" it means almost as little. All that would be necessary would be that it be towable by at least ONE half ton truck but it certainly does not mean towable by ALL half tons. Always best to your the tow ratings set by your trucks manufacturer along with (and even MORE importantly) the safety ratings for the truck which are GVWR and GAWR) to determine if a combination is viable.
GVWR or the trailer as it fits into your manufacturers tow rating (determines if the truck can tow it without excessive repairs and that the owner will most likely be satisfied with performance)and that the factory warranty will be honored for any type of repair necessary. The safety ratings to be sure it will be safe. Use 15% of the trailers GVWR to determine tongue weight and check how that fits within your trucks AVAILABLE payload. I say AVAILABLE because any optional equipment like shells, covers etc. will reduce the number on your door post pound for pound). Include the weights of all people, cargo and optional after market equipment on the truck to see if the computed loaded tongue weight fits. Simply add up all of the weights carried by the truck and subtract from the payload number on the door post. If the numbers say it's OK then you should have a good towing combination.
Good luck / Skip
2011 F-150 HD Ecoboost 3.5 V6. 2550 payload, 17,100 GCVWR - 2004 F-150 HD (Traded after 80,000 towing miles) 2007 Rockwood 8314SS 34' travel trailer
US Govt survey shows three out of four people make up 75% of the total population
That Jayco 2011 Eagle Super Lite 318RLS Specs...
Unloaded Vehicle Weight 6,715
Hitch Weight (lbs)790
Gross Vehicle Weight (lbs) 9300
Cargo Carrying Capacity (lbs) 1,585
Exterior Travel Length 33' 7"
My posts shouldn't be taken for factual data. They are purely fictional, for entertainment purposes and should not be constituted as actually related to scientific, technical, engineering, legal, spiritual or practical advice. Amen.
Mark, you did'ent mention if the GMC is a 1500 or 2500, so I'm going to assume it's a 1500. Also assuming that you'll be within the weight restraints of both the Jayco & truck then the short answer to your question is "maybe". That trailer & personal stuff will weight in almost if not over 8000 lbs. That small V8 coupled with that rear gear ratio is probably not going to make it over many steep hills & a tranny oil cooler is a must. On short level hauls it will probable do ok. Joe
I tow a similar (if not heavier) trailer with a similarly equiped '07 1500. It's 4x4, 5.3 engine and 3.42 gear. It's no speed demon but it gets the job done. A healthy head wind will put a damper on speed as well. I have a WDH and I've also installed Air Lift bags.
If you go by the door sticker my 1500 has a payload of 1262lbs. Just out of curiosity I checked the door sticker on my wife's Equinox the other day. Low and behold this "crossover SUV" built on a FWD car chassis has a payload capacity of 1283lbs. Imagine that......MORE than my pickup.
I've been towing for many many years and have no problem with my setup and I'm not advocating this is for everyone. Am I a hazard to myself, my family or everyone else on the road? No
When I got into this I ahd an 05 F-150 w/tow package and 3.73 gears.
I bougth an 06 28' Fleetwood Pioneer that weighed 7200lbs. Sure it got the job done on flat surfaces but since we live near mountains... we wanted to visit them.
Thats where the issues started.
Needless to say a year later I have a brand new lighter camper and a more heavy duty truck (which I got for only 4wd options)
I have a 2009 chevy Z71 with the same specs as your GMC (mine is a Z71 not "just" a 4x4) My trailer is about the same as that one as well weight wise. I think it does a great job of pulling it. I have the 6 speed Trans (i'm assuming yours does as well) which will make a huge difference if you have a 4 speed.
People always sees the 3.42 rear end and say it won't pull a trailer, with the 6 speed trans the first 2 gears are lower than if you had a 4.10 with a 4 speed.
Since you want to stay with Jayco, maybe you should look at the at New Jayco White Hawk 27DSRL. It's truely a 1/2 ton towable trailer.
Jayco has been doing this for 43 years, and designed the new White Hawk from the ground up to be strong (it has a steel frame) yet light aerodynamic full featured modern TT. Huge 36" deep slidouts are very rare in this class of trailer and even bigger than our Jayco Eagle and Jayco Jay Flight had!
Even the wide track axles contribute to better weight distribution and easier towing. And high end recessed ceiling halogen lighting, deeper storage cabinets and huge MaxView picture windows at the dinette.
The floorplan is nearly identical to the 318RLS, BUT it's 2000 lbs lighter and 3' shorter for easier towing with your truck. You gain another swivel rocker, 10 gallons more fresh water, a 2nd exterior door, and get another 2nd refigerator outside(!), outside gas grill, and 2 year warranty. It even has standard entrance step, baggage compartment, hitch area and dump station lighting.