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Old 09-12-2013, 10:27 PM   #1
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General Rule of thumb

I've been discussing trailer weights vs towing capacity of late. Obviously every combination of truck and trailer is going to be unique. And literally everything will factor...empty vehicle weight, configured towing capacity, trailer weight, cargo, passengers as well as Axel ratings, tire ratings, gear ratios, payload, GVWR... Lest we forget terrain... Phew...did I cover it all?

But if you had to throw out a percentage number of stated towing capacity not to exceed when purchasing a TT, what would it be?

For me I'd say 70% is a good starter. Of course that leave less head room the lower the towing capacity but considering most trucks in the half ton range fall in the 7K to 10K range this seemed to give the best balance. I'm figuring 1000 to 1500 of cargo in the trailer, and another 1000 to 1500 persons, gear, and wood in the truck.

-I'm well aware I'm above the number I assigned as my comfort zone for my current truck...
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Old 09-12-2013, 10:31 PM   #2
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Umm. 100% ?

What do I win?
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Old 09-12-2013, 10:34 PM   #3
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Im going for 70-80% as these things catch alot of air.
Overall weight of course is not as big of an issue as pin weight.
My 2 cents.
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Old 09-12-2013, 10:49 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtstromsburg View Post
Umm. 100% ?

What do I win?
A trip to the transmission shop for a swap out
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Old 09-12-2013, 10:56 PM   #5
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Rule of thumb is that the same as shooting from the hip.
1/2 ton truck. I would aim at not towing more then 5000 lb.
I would shoot for a trailer weight of about 3500 lb. And not being surprised when I end up around 6000 lb.
so that would be 60 to 70 percent.
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Old 09-12-2013, 11:44 PM   #6
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I shoot for a GVWR to be at least a full ton under the truck's advertised tow rating. I'm certain that I'm not running near that after adding my various weights of water, propane, etc... But I also hold a flat figure for 1/2 tons, which is 7K pounds. I fathom how many are pulling 9K+ pound trailers with 1/2 tons.
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Old 09-12-2013, 11:46 PM   #7
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Percent Schmercent.
Tow rating doesn't mean sh*t.
Payload is the only number that matters.
Realistically, how many 150 lb drivers will drive an empty truck when towing at or near the rated max capacity??
You aren't.
According to the Ford website a heavy GVWR truck has less payload than a lower GVWR truck.
It takes weight to haul weight and the breakover point is very, very expensive.
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Old 09-12-2013, 11:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mister View Post
I've been discussing trailer weights vs towing capacity of late. Obviously every combination of truck and trailer is going to be unique. And literally everything will factor...empty vehicle weight, configured towing capacity, trailer weight, cargo, passengers as well as Axel ratings, tire ratings, gear ratios, payload, GVWR... Lest we forget terrain... Phew...did I cover it all?

But if you had to throw out a percentage number of stated towing capacity not to exceed when purchasing a TT, what would it be?

For me I'd say 70% is a good starter. Of course that leave less head room the lower the towing capacity but considering most trucks in the half ton range fall in the 7K to 10K range this seemed to give the best balance. I'm figuring 1000 to 1500 of cargo in the trailer, and another 1000 to 1500 persons, gear, and wood in the truck.

-I'm well aware I'm above the number I assigned as my comfort zone for my current truck...

You might like this web page. If you know your all numbers and the truck your looking for / have.
Travel Trailer Weight Calculator

Carl
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Old 09-13-2013, 05:50 AM   #9
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That's a neat calculator. And I bookmarked it for the future. But you still didn't offer your subjective "rule of thumb".
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Old 09-13-2013, 07:35 AM   #10
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1/2 tone 6K 3/4 ton 8k ball park.
70% - 80% gross
85% -90% tongue
That said....
But I find myself getting more detailed now. That why I use the calculator link.
Travel Trailer Weight Calculator
That why I feel its important to know the real lbs. of the camper and NOT the yellow sticker or what the mfg says my tongue lbs. is. Like I said before theres a huge differance.
Then you can buy a truck to fit your needs.
Or add 400 lbs to the tongue and gross lbs of the camper if you buying a 28 foot plus unit.

So my rule of thumb.... is do my homework first. Dealers like to live by the book lbs. numbers... The devils in the details.


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