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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > New Truck - Is My Math Right?

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TomG2

Central Illinois

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Posted: 03/18/20 09:57am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Some dealers have tongue scales to check dry tongue weight and help set up hitches. Sherline is a common brand.

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 03/18/20 10:38am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Merrykalia wrote:

That is the real problem with half ton pickups from ALL the manufacturers. Unless you special order something, most of the trucks sitting on the lots are VERY limited with payload. They look pretty and all the additional "pretties" also eat up your payload numbers.

I would guess and say that 50% of the people out there that purchase their first truck and camper are over their specs. Maybe not grossly overweight, but......

A little knowledge up-front will make you feel better and will make for a better experience.


Except the “payload” and rear axle ratings are also “limited” by factors other than their actual capabilities.
Example, the same axle the OPs truck has is rated higher in a different truck configuration that isn’t limited to 6600gvwr which is a limitation based on other factors than the rear axle’s weight carrying ability.
Or in short, 3400 rawr is stated intentionally low, to fit into the overall light duty truck class.
3800-4000lbs is a standard 1/2 ton rawr and the truck and all of its components will operate as designed with good service life at this weight.
Or think about it practically. Put 4 people in the cab of the truck, avg 150lb theoretical weight. Leaves 500lbs ccc in the bed by the most conservative “numbers” posted.
Does that seem even remotely near the ability of a full size half ton truck?? He!! No. Not even close. That’s more like the rating of a mid size sedan.
OP, don’t obsess over it. Any trailer with 1000lbs or less tongue weight and about 8klbs or less overall weight is right in your trucks wheelhouse.


"Yes Sir, Oct 10 1888, Those poor school children froze to death in their tracks. They did not even find them until Spring. Especially hard hit were the ones who had to trek uphill to school both ways, with no shoes." -Bert A.

bid_time

Michigan

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Posted: 03/18/20 10:48am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Number one, move that 50 lbs of gear you want to put in the truck to the trailer. At that point it only adds 7 lbs to the tongue weight (14%), giving you 43 more lbs of payload to work with.





rbpru

North Central Indiana

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Posted: 03/18/20 11:36am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Here are some real world figures.

* 2011 F-150 Max Cargo from door jamb 1411#.
* 2010 Dutchmen Lite 25 ft. TT. Dry weight 5004#. Loaded for the road and across the CAT scales the TT weighs 6200# with about 750# on the tongue.
* That is about 12% on the tongue, the WD hitch is set a touch nose down.

The wife and I plus the dog and camp gear come to about 650#. This puts the truck at its limit. We have no issues towing, the E-boost pulls nicely and we have managed 40,000 mile in about 5 years.

Our trailer weight actually varies with the amount of "stuff" we need from trip to trip. Water, consumables, and gear can vary 200 to 300 lbs.; even more on weekend outings.

We love the rig combo but anything heavier would require a larger truck. Towing at the limit does take a toll on shocks, brakes and tires. Of course not everyone is gong to tow 8000 mile a year across desert and the Rockies.

Good Luck


Twenty six foot 2010 Dutchmen Lite pulled with a 2011 EcoBoost F-150 4x4.

Just right for Grandpa, Grandma and the dog.


Boomerweps

Hills of PA

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Posted: 03/18/20 11:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

sliptap wrote:


@Boomerweps - you are correct on the values! My truck has the 53A standard tow package. Max Tow Package is only available for 3.5 ecoboost. Thanks again for the previous advice also.


Yeah, knew about the Max Tow requiring the 3.5EB. I'm happy with my 5.0L with more HP and not much less torque, just comes on at higher RPM. Side note: 5.0 required for snow plow prep package.

FYI, there is/was a paper sticker on the frame under the driver's door. It has a code to define the chassis thickness. The 145" WB with towing package (mine) has the HD (heavy duty) .1" thick metal. There is .087" LD light duty, and .11" HPP heavy Payload package (may be used on the Max Tow?)


2019 Wolf Pup 16 BHS Limited
2019 F150 SCrew STX SB 5.0 factory tow package

JIMNLIN

Oklahoma

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Posted: 03/18/20 12:14pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Quote:

If it helps, I also weighed the truck yesterday at a CAT scale. I filled it full of gas and weighed it with me outside of the truck. Here is the actual truck weight:

Steer Axle: 3060 lbs

Drive Axle: 2240 lbs

This is all you need to figure how much weight any truck can safely carry. Your math (3350 minus 2240 lbs = 1110 lbs is your trucks rear axle payload. Your F150 has a very small 3350 RAWR
Was the 2240 lb with everyone and gear in the truck ?? If not don't try and estimate the trucks numbers when you can load it up road ready and then weigh and use those numbers. It may surprise you how occupants in the cab affects axle weights different than you may think. People's weight in the front seat won't all go on a trucks front axle.
The 3350 GAWR is the smallest of any 1/2 ton trucks out here.
The F150 does have around 12-13 different GVWR numbers and ;
3800 RAWR
4050 RAWR
4550 RAWR
4800 RAWR (HDPP)
As you see your looking at a very small TT vs higher rated F150s.
Quote:

My biggest concern at this point is "how do I estimate which RVs have a trailer hitch weight I can support?" I know this will be an estimate, but I want to be careful I don't overload my truck from the start. Is 14% of the trailers GVWR a safe assumption for purchasing? Or any other advice to estimate this?

I use the trailer mfg dry gross weight numbers...CCC numbers...GVWR numbers. For a trailer that size your not going to carry much like some one with a 30-35' TT or 5th wheel trailer.
A 4000 GVWR trailer may have a 2800 lb dry weight. Now add 700-800 lbs in the trailer = maybe 3500-3600 lbs gross weight.
Using a 10 percent hitch weigh = maybe 360 lbs. These are estimates so I use that type of math for a 5k-6k gvwr trailer.
AS the trailer gets bigger we tend to carry more necessary Junk [emoticon]


"good judgment comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment" ............ Will Rogers

'03 2500 QC Dodge/Cummins HO 3.73 6 speed manual Jacobs Westach
'97 Park Avanue 28' 5er 11200 two slides

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 03/18/20 01:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

bid_time wrote:

Number one, move that 50 lbs of gear you want to put in the truck to the trailer. At that point it only adds 7 lbs to the tongue weight (14%), giving you 43 more lbs of payload to work with.


ROFLMAO

Huntindog

Phoenix AZ

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Posted: 03/19/20 06:14am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

By using 14% for TW, you are being more realisic than many here.
The range is usually 10-15%. With 10% being the absolute minimum to avoid a dangerously sway prone setup. 15% is the general maximum only because that is the limit of what the truck/hitch can handle.

What is unique with TTs is that TW can vary a LOT in the course of a trip. FW gets consumed and ends up in the waste tanks, food the same, clothing moves as it is soiled, propane gets consumed and disappears, and many other items change as well. Some here will say that they use 10%.... well they need to be very careful in doing so.
I recommend using 15%, I am over that, but my truck/hitch can handle more than most.
The closer you get to the 10% minumum, the more critical managing the above items becomes... And in my opinion the more limiting your TT experience will be.
Saying you will always fill the water at the campground means that you are limited in only using campgrounds where water is available... IMO, that is a severe limitation... You may be fine with it... And that is OK, but you need to realize that means no boondocking,,,, ever!



Huntindog
100% boondocking
2010 Palomino Sabre 30 BHDS
84 gal. Grey. 84 gal. Black
2 bathrooms, no waiting
2011 Silverado CC DA big dually.



GrandpaKip

Flat Rock

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Posted: 03/19/20 07:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I think you’re on the right track. If you take 13% of the gross weight rating and the resultant tongue weight fits in your calculations, you’ve got a good starting point. Per your figures, it does look as if 4000# will be your upper limit.
I would also suggest you look into an Andersen hitch which is perfect for the size camper you are looking at, is very easy to set up and weighs less than the standard bar type.
Have fun.


Kip
2015 Skyline Dart 214RB
2018 Silverado Double Cab 4x4
Andersen Hitch

Boomerweps

Hills of PA

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Posted: 03/19/20 07:35am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Plan on carrying some water on longer trips. SWMBO (she who must be obeyed) may wish to use her own BR rather than sitting on a public toilet!

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