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Old 05-15-2016, 11:09 AM   #11
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Good catch Kingfisher. Looks like someone was out of the truck for the last two weighings.


2010 F250 5.4L 3.73
2011 Flagstaff 831FKBSS
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Old 05-15-2016, 10:06 PM   #12
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Since I was surprised when I got to the scales I will share my experience. First off I had printed out the procedure from this forum so I had a pretty good idea what to do. I also had weighed my last trailer 2 years ago at the same scale but I know now I did it all wrong. The Cat scale by my house is at a truck stop off I-75 which is quit busy so a little intimidating being around all the trucks. I was on our first trip heading north to Traverse City for the weekend on a Friday morning and was loaded as it would normally be. I caught a break when I got there because the Cat Scale repair crew was there cleaning and servicing it. They had just installed a call button down lower on the pole. I remember last time the call button to call the scale operator was at semi height and I had to pull up and stand in the truck doorway just to reach the button. I pulled off to the side of scale and went inside to let them know I was going to take 3 weights and that it would take awhile. They were really helpful and said no problem and also recommended I do a tandem weigh which would cost less. (someone can correct me here on what kind of weigh it is called) It was $10.50 for the first weigh and $2.00 for the next 2. I had a plan on how to most efficiently take the three weights but I was told that I had to drive off and then back on between each weigh to reset the scale. That through my plan out the window as I had never heard anyone mention this before. So what I did was drive onto scale as is for the first weigh. So it was truck front axle on scale 1, rear axle on scale 2 and both trailer axles on scale 3 with WDH attached. Wife and dog in truck but me outside standing on scale I so I could hit the call button for them to take the weight. It actually takes about 10-20 seconds and they call back and say ok done and ready for next weigh. I then backed off the scale completely and then pulled back on. Same as first weigh with truck front axle on scale 1, rear axle on scale 2 and trailer axles on scale 3. I then had to run jack down to raise trailer and remove equalizer and sway bars then run jack back down to have full tongue weight on truck. First mistake and weight discrepancy is I laid the bars down off the scale to the side. Then went to hit call button and I was standing on scale 1 but wife was standing on scale 2. My truck just barely fit with axles on scale 1 and 2 and when it was I could not sit inside and hit the call button. In hind site I should have jumped back in truck before they did the weigh. Anyway after weigh 2 I then backed off scale again and pulled back on but this time I had the whole trailer sitting on scale 3 so when I unhooked it the front tongue jack and axles were all on scale 3. I then pulled the truck forward so it was on scale 1 and 2 like before. This gave me the actual loaded truck weight and trailer weight. Except next mistake was wife was outside standing on scale 3 and I had put the bars back by trailer ready to install. Really hard to get this all done correctly. Glad I did not have any trucks waiting to weigh. So after weigh 3 I hooked back up drove off and parked and went inside to get my weight slips and pay. All together it probably took me 20 minutes to complete the whole thing. Hope this helps. All I can say is have a plan and be ready to move fast.
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Old 05-16-2016, 10:02 AM   #13
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I don't rush, but I also don't dilly-dally on the scale. Slow and steady win the race. I pull onto the scale with the combo hitched up like normal. I stand on the truck's running boards in order to reach the call button. That gets my first weighing.

For a fifth wheel, you only need 2 weighings:
1) Truck + camper
2) Truck-only
Reference: Learn To RV: How to Weigh a Fifth Wheel Camper (at CAT Scales)

For a travel trailer, you need 3:
1) Truck + camper w/ WDH engaged
2) Truck + camper w/o WDH engaged
3) Truck-only
Reference: Learn To RV: How to Weigh a Travel Trailer

After the first weighing, I then drive off the scale (forward, not backward) and make whatever changes I need to in the parking lot where I'm out of the way of everyone. While that happens, my wife goes inside and pays for the first weighing and gets the weight slip. Once she's back and everyone is in the vehicle where they were the first time, THEN I pull back onto the scale.

After the second weighing, I again drive off the scale (forward, not backward) and do the needful. Just remember, all weighings need everyone in their same seats/spots for consistency.

I've read about folks here unhitching on the scale and I've also read about scalemasters telling people to NOT do that. In fact, I believe I read a CAT scale sign that said don't do it. When I need to unhitch, I park the setup in a truck parking space or wholly off to the side somewhere it's not in the way. (Truthfully, this is the most nervewracking part for me.)

Once I have all of the numbers, I plug them into my other site:
Actual Weight Utilities - Towing Planner
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Old 05-16-2016, 10:15 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDABEUT View Post
Thanks Ependydad for taking the time to run my numbers. It confirms my math was correct. It looks like I need to take at least 100 lbs. off the rear of truck which is easy to do. I am not to concerned about being over the GVWR as long as I am under the axle weights since it seems to be fudged number anyway. I am more concerned now on the factory hitch weight max of 1100 lbs. I think without changing anything just adding 15 more gallons of water in the tank will fix that. Also probably upgrading my WDH
will help since I am running a older heavier one. I would like to know how hot the rear end fluid gets.

I always keep my eye on all fluid temps when towing and have only seen my trany temp go up to 220 towing thru the Rockies on a 90 degree day.
Water temp never over 220 but this truck runs hot anyway at 200 all the time. It does have dual electric fans that helps keep it cooled down and oil and trany coolers. I am heading to the Smokey's next month so we can give it another good test. Hope to meet you all at Goshen in August.


Personally I towed heavier. I also had a fireballs cap. That thing weighed 500 lbs, I went with a soft Tonneau cover and made everything right with my TT and the F 150. I have two the 5.4 V8 and Ecoboost. Both were within rating and would have performed better with E rated tires.
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Old 05-16-2016, 10:16 AM   #15
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That's interesting I never seen a sign and the operator knew what I was doing and the CAT scale service people watched me do everything and never said anything. So if you don't unhook on the scale you really never get the true total weight of the RV or am I missing something here ????
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Old 05-16-2016, 11:15 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by EDABEUT View Post
That's interesting I never seen a sign and the operator knew what I was doing and the CAT scale service people watched me do everything and never said anything. So if you don't unhook on the scale you really never get the true total weight of the RV or am I missing something here ????
I swear I took a photo of the sign, but I can't find it. Story of my dang life.

But you can get the true total weight of the trailer by adding the hitch weight + the trailer axles weight. To get the hitch weight, you have to do some math between the loaded and unloaded weights. That's where my towingplanner.com site comes in handy.
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Old 05-16-2016, 11:20 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ependydad View Post
For a travel trailer, you need 3:
1) Truck + camper w/ WDH engaged
2) Truck + camper w/o WDH engaged
3) Truck-only
Reference: Learn To RV: How to Weigh a Travel Trailer
ependydad, when looking at the excellent instructions in the above link, task 3 reads:

"Weighing Truck Only; park the travel trailer in a truck parking spot, put the WDH bars with the travel trailer (locked inside) and come back around to just weigh the truck"

When mentioned "...put the WDH bars with the travel trailer...", does one leave the hitch itself in place on the truck?

Thanks in advance for the response...and for the neat site once I get weighed.
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Old 05-16-2016, 11:22 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by windsurfdog View Post
ependydad, when looking at the excellent instructions in the above link, task 3 reads:

"Weighing Truck Only; park the travel trailer in a truck parking spot, put the WDH bars with the travel trailer (locked inside) and come back around to just weigh the truck"

When mentioned "...put the WDH bars with the travel trailer...", does one leave the hitch itself in place on the truck?

Thanks in advance for the response...and for the neat site once I get weighed.
I think I would leave it in the truck, but I am curious what others say.
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Old 05-16-2016, 03:48 PM   #19
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Help With Deciphering Scaled Weights

You should leave the hitch on and put the bars in the back end of the pickup behind the axle. They are not really tongue weight but should be applied against the truck's payload. Personally I think the hitch and bar weight should be added to the tongue weight when looking at the receiver rating, but people have different opinions on that.


2010 F250 5.4L 3.73
2011 Flagstaff 831FKBSS
Equal-i-zer 4pt 12K
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Old 05-16-2016, 04:26 PM   #20
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Again, most 2500 and F250s can tow considerably more than 1500 and F150s but the max payload may be less than a 1500 or F150 with the heavy duty payload package. Just check the driver door and post stickers, some 2500 and F25 owners were surprised.
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