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Old 08-20-2012, 01:32 PM   #1
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Does hitch weight change GCWR?

I have read for hours and I am just more confused!

Truck: 2012 RAM, Big Horn, 4x4, Crew Cab, 20" wheels; 3.55 Axle ratio

RV: 2012 Sandpiper 30Z Dry weight 8200 lbs loaded; 813 lbs tongue weight

According to RAM's Towing chart:
I am fine and would have 900 lbs to spare for cargo and passengers. This chart has NO disclaimer of the GCWR being variable based hitch weight.


When I use this chart on the RAM webiste 2012 RAM Trucks | Towing & Payload Specifications | RAM Trucks (using the look up my vehicle link). When I plug in the hitch weight of 813 lbs and then adjust to 4 passengers I get a max tow vehicle rating of 7,045 lbs.

Which is it??????????

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Old 08-20-2012, 01:57 PM   #2
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Hello, and to the forums. Hope you enjoy the stay, and learn a lot, and can teach others what you already know.

In short, GCWR, Gross Combined Weight Rating, does not change, no matter what axles have what weight. You can overload one axle, and be light weight on another, and be within GCWR, but be over weight on say the back axle. You also mention hitch weight, but do you really mean tongue weight? Tongue weight will mostly be added to the truck, based on the weight distribution bars, and will reduce the cargo capacity of the truck. You also mentioned dry weight on your camper, bad number to use, much too light. Only way to know for sure is a trip to the scales.

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Old 08-20-2012, 02:08 PM   #3
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the gcwr should not change?? its the total of the tv and trailer max matter what weighs what....

if your talking about max towing, then i can see why...those calculators and stuff generally are only kinda accurate, as they cannot acccount for the EXACXT options on your vehicle....

i have an f250 and then when i selected the all the options when i ordered it only left me with 2165lbs cargo capacity out of the 10k max gvw for my if i had left off all the gadgets and 4wd and stuff that adds weight, then i could have had a payload closer to 2800 like my father in laws truck....

only real world way is to go to the scale and see what your INDIVIDUAL unit really weighs....then work from there based on what you will carry...
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Old 08-20-2012, 02:08 PM   #4
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you need to be carfull how you look at GCWR. The hitch weight is part of the trailer weight. If you try to figure out your GCVWR you need to take your loaded truck (people and stuff)-150 for one person, and your loaded trailer (not dryweight) and add those two numbers to get you GCVWR. in your case you need to be below 14000. for the GVWR of the truck you need to take the fully loaded truck pluse the hitch weight of the loaded trailer you need to stay under 6700 lbs. One issue I see is you have 920 lbs for 3 people in the truck pluse the weight extra stuff in the trailer. The trailer will not weigh 7800 from the factory unless there are no options added. Also the dry weight does not include propane, battery etc. So I'm guessing with a loaded trailer and truck you will be over the 14000 GCVWR.

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Old 08-20-2012, 06:16 PM   #5
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I just went through some of the same issues with understanding how the numbers are calculated with my now old RAM 1500. 1st..ignore that towing calculator (2nd link) as it has more flaws than I can count.

The hitch weight does not apply to the GCWR calculations. To determine if you are under GCWR you need to add the total weight of the TT and TV loaded. Using the published weights will cause you grief as no trailer or truck actually weighs what is published. I weighed my truck with nothing in it but me and a full tank of gas and the truck weighed 240 lbs more than published.

Where the hitch weight does get counted is on your payload or calculating the GVWR of the truck. To approximate that effect you will need to add the weight of all passengers (less 150 already accounted for the driver), all gear you plan on loading, trucks base weight plus the hitch weight. Be carefull on the hitch weight guess .. you will want the hitch weight to equal appox 13% of the total weight of the trailer.

Try this link to see where I came out on my calculations. TV calculation help needed please

I realized that with the TT I was looking at, I could limit how I loaded it to stay on the ragged edge of limits but that wasn't an acceptable solution for me.
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