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Open Roads Forum  >  Fifth-Wheels

 > Understanding towing weights?

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FootSoldier

Scottsdale, AZ

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Posted: 06/17/21 08:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I appreciate everyone's patience. I'm reading a lot and trying to get a good understanding of what shouldn't be as confusing as I think it is subject. LOL!

When I started this process, I was looking at a 3/4 ton diesel 4x4 SB truck, thinking I have seen lots of people running up and down the highway pulling rigs much larger than what we're looking at.

Now, I am starting to think there's a lot of rigs overloaded out there on the roads.

Just working from manufacturer published numbers for both the truck and trailer, so I can get into the right ballpark.

The truck; 3/4 ton crew cab, SB, 4x4, diesel, max hitch 18.5k, GCWR 27.5k, but only 3553 max payload.

The trailer; 34' fifth wheel, GVWR 13k, curb weight 10.2k, dry hitch 1960.

Assuming they're telling the truth, I thought I'd be fine. But, with encouragement from here and scratching a little deeper I saw a different picture.

Truck payload 3563 max. Add 5th wheel hitch, 36 gal fuel, 2 people, and the trailer tongue weight and you have 29k on-board just like that. That only leaves 663lbs for anything else to be carried on the truck.

And what if like others here have said, the tongue weight listed is off by just 10%? Add a small generator, ice chest, small emergency tool bag, and now your at full tilt max rated payload of the truck. Forget about that over-sized 60 gal replacement fuel tank, I can't carry another 24 gal of fuel, +168lbs.

Does this look like I'm finally getting this right? Looks like everything is going to turn on the truck rated max payload number? None of the GVRW, GCWR, tow capacity is really going to come into play, because the first lowest limiting factor is going to be payload?

Patience for a newby please?

FootSoldier

Scottsdale, AZ

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Posted: 06/17/21 09:09pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

This is getting crazy. Everywhere I look, you get different numbers. What the heck?

stickdog

Somewhere, USA

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Posted: 06/17/21 09:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Don't worry about fuel weight, your base curb wt. Includes a full tank of fuel.


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cptqueeg

Idaho

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Posted: 06/17/21 09:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yes payload is the limiting factor. Forget the 3/4T. There is no reason to buy a 3/4T vs a 1T to tow a 34' FW.

In 6 pages from now we'll be discussing a 350/3500 and whether it should be a SRW or DRW. [emoticon]

cptqueeg

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Posted: 06/17/21 09:35pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Then 4 pages after that we'll talk you into a 450/4500.

Old-Biscuit

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Posted: 06/17/21 10:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Payload is an arbitrary number based on GVWR minus UVW which are numbers by MFG for warranty, Class and Registration


Look at the trucks RAWR
Subtract base weight
How much weight can be added before exceeding the RAWR

"The trailer; 34' fifth wheel, GVWR 13k, curb weight 10.2k, dry hitch 1960."
Forget that dry hitch weight cause you will not be towing it DRY
But it can be an idea of pin weight ratio.....19% pin ratio

13K GVWR....20% Pin Ratio = 2600# WET pin weight
Use 22% for margin = 2860#

Any current 3/4 ton can easily handle that additional weight on Trucks Rear Axle
1 Ton SRW would be more then adequate for 13K 5ht wheel


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work2much

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Posted: 06/17/21 10:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Payload is the number.

We have a 2017 Ram 3500 dually and are near payload with a 35' 15,000 gvwr trailer. How? we carry more than just the trailer pin in the truck. 2 people, a hitch, a tool box full of tools with a diesel transfer tank, chocks, blocks.

Really need to hit the scales to know what you got and where it's sitting for payload.


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Sagebrush

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Posted: 06/17/21 11:25pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You just don't want to overload the rear axle or tires no matter what you have. For me if I'm pulling a 5th wheel I will always choose a DRW truck unless its some super light weight rig. I've done the overloaded SRW route in the past, I don't want to repeat that again. Buy more truck than you think you will need. One of the biggest things I've learned is to slow down, just because you have the power to run 75 mph doesn't mean its a good idea!

You can also consider a gasoline powered truck too, especially if you can have an older tow rig. Like the older Chevy's, my uncle loved his 3500 gasser as a secondary vehicle and tow rig. I use my dually mainly for towing, its not a daily driver. If I was shopping today I would give that new Ford Godzilla motor a hard look. These new diesels are complicated wonders. I love my old diesel trucks and I have a per-emmisions Ram 3500 now. Just not sure if I would buy a new one and daily drive it.

valhalla360

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Posted: 06/18/21 05:20am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yes, a 13k GVWR trailer is likely to leave you overloaded once you have everything packed up for travel.

With bumper pull trailers, a 3/4 ton will handle about anything a a 1 ton SRW will but with 5ers, payload is the driving force and 1 tons have higher payload.


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wowens79

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Posted: 06/18/21 06:14am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'm looking at doing the same thing over the next year. I can't see any reason not to go with a 350/3500. The price difference is like $1000.

Read up on the new Ford 7.3 gasser(Godzilla), it is what I'm leaning towards. It would handle that 5th wheel with no problem, and save you $10k buying the truck, add 500-1000lbs of payload capacity. The new diesels are monsters, but the price to repair them is a monster also. The EPA has killed the diesel with all the emissions ****. If you were looking at a 40ft 5ver, I'd go diesel, but at your size I think the gasser makes sense.


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