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Old 07-12-2013, 09:39 AM   #1
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Wink 5th wheel towing with a Ram 2500 diesel

We just purchased a dodge 2500 diesel rated at towing 17000 pounds single axle I keep seeing everyone saying a 3500 is needed for the big boys but we are looking at the forest rivers 5 th s around 14000 lbs does anyone have a ram 2500 diesel ? That can give advice?
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Old 07-12-2013, 09:57 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Ecclesiastes View Post
We just purchased a dodge 2500 diesel rated at towing 17000 pounds single axle I keep seeing everyone saying a 3500 is needed for the big boys but we are looking at the forest rivers 5 th s around 14000 lbs does anyone have a ram 2500 diesel ? That can give advice?
Need more info here.
Full trailer spec.
Full truck specs.

Biggest concern would be your pin weight of the camper and your cargo carrying capacity of your truck.

The ccc of truck can be found on your tire loading sticker on door or door jamb of truck.


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Old 07-12-2013, 10:07 AM   #3
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There are a couple of different schools of thought at play when it comes to towing:

1) Those that feel the need to be within all rated specs of their truck.
2) Those that feel they can exceed some or all of their rated specs with justifications.
3) Those that feel, "it's a truck, it has a hitch, I'm gonna hookup and go".

For me, I'm in the first camp. The "tow rating" is based on a perfect world scenario of a 150 pound driver and literally nothing else in the truck - no passengers, no fat guy driver, no extra electronics, no upgrades or gizmos on the truck, nothing in the truck bed (except for a hitch, I guess they have to plan for that somehow). Are you a single guy/gal who hasn't changed anything about the truck, is 150 pounds and doesn't carry anything in the truck cab or bed?

Likely not- so now, with most trucks- you run out of what Ron said- "cargo carrying capacity", also known as "payload". This is the difference between what your truck weighs and the stickered "gross vehicle weight rating" (GVWR). Then, from the cargo carrying capacity, you have to deduct weight for the rest of the driver, passengers, stuff you carry, stuff you've done to the truck (my fancy rolltop bed cover is 100+ pounds) and anything you typically carry in the truck bed (extra fuel, tool box, tables, fire wood, bikes, etc.). You'd be surprised how quickly that gets eaten up. For my family, we knock a good 1,200 pounds off of our advertised payload!

Finally, the remaining payload is what you can carry in pin weight. The pin weight is usually 20%-25% of the trailers *actual loaded weight* (the average camper weighs 1,000-1,500 pounds higher than it's advertised "dry weight" and the bigger the camper, the more crap you stuff in there- at 42' and a traveling weight of 14,000 pounds- I'm about 2,200 pounds higher than our advertised dry weight).

With a camper that weighs 14,000 pounds - you most likely will be over on GVWR and at or near the rear axle and tire load capacities. The folks in category #2 make a choice that this is acceptable to them.

Which kind of person are you?
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Old 07-12-2013, 10:07 AM   #4
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I wrote a blog post for my father-in-law as he was looking at campers:
Learn To RV: What Can I Tow?

It might help you out. The "towing capacity" isn't the only number that matters- in fact, it's likely the one that matters the least.
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Old 07-12-2013, 10:42 AM   #5
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My CC 34SATS weighs in at 14kfully loaded and anything less than my F350 1 ton would be white knuckling it for me fosho. If I didn't have the helper springs on the rear axle I'd need air bags. The truck rides nice and level hooked up and ready to go. With a trailer that heavy, re-think the 3/4 ton.
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Old 07-12-2013, 10:56 AM   #6
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The link below will cover 2002 - 2009 Model years hopefully it helps you. The Cummins powered 2500 series Dodge trucks have less payload than an identical gas powered model. Notice I say payload and not towing capacity. The link has drop down menus to help you navigate to your specific trucks design.

Dodge Towing Guide - By Vehicle=
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:02 AM   #7
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After quickly looking your truck is probably newer than a 2009 model year. The max towing for a 2009 Cummins 2500 is 12,950 pounds in a quadcab 4x4 configuration wich is probably 90% of what I see on the road today. This is with a 3.73 or 4.10 gear if you happen to have a 3.42 it's 9,950. Payload is 2,083 pounds in all 3 gear ratios. As a comparison my Gas powered 2009 has a payload of 2,749 lbs almost 700 lbs more due to the drivetrain being much lighter.
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:05 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JFM-jr View Post
The link below will cover 2002 - 2009 Model years hopefully it helps you. The Cummins powered 2500 series Dodge trucks have less payload than an identical gas powered model. Notice I say payload and not towing capacity. The link has drop down menus to help you navigate to your specific trucks design.

Dodge Towing Guide - By Vehicle=
The Ram Body Builder Guide is also a great resource for this stuff.

But, I still stand by- if you're going to adhere to all ratings, you run out of payload long before hitting towing capacity in real world scenarios.
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:21 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by ependydad View Post
There are a couple of different schools of thought at play when it comes to towing:

1) Those that feel the need to be within all rated specs of their truck.
2) Those that feel they can exceed some or all of their rated specs with justifications.
3) Those that feel, "it's a truck, it has a hitch, I'm gonna hookup and go".

Which kind of person are you?
ependydad:, I think you're a very cautious person, always err on the side of safety and give good advise, but don't you think you may a crossed the line a bit here and perhaps with these quoted statements incite a bit of unnecessary controversy, ie trolling. Towing capabilities of any vehicle comes down to simple math. Your either within the limits or not. Other opinions come from experiences.
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:53 AM   #10
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Terry- I definitely respect your opinion and assure you that wasn't my intention. Let me think on this a bit and I'll shoot you a PM.
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