Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 03-15-2015, 10:10 PM   #1
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 43
My towing set up number breakdown...

When it came time to decide what travel trailer we wanted to upgrade to, I did as much research as possible on the weights that my '99 Lincoln Navigator could handle. After narrowing down the choices to the handful of models that would meet all our wishes, I knew I was going to be pushing the limits of my 170K mile tow vehicle. After just having replaced our transmission with a reman ($3000), I needed to get a few more years out of it before taking on another truck payment. To prepare the SUV for the task I installed the largest B&M transmission cooler I could fit behind my grill and I now monitor tranny temp (a must) with a Scangauge II. I also changed spark plugs, both differentials, transfer case and tranny got Royal Purple synthetic fluid. I upgraded to a Prodigy 3 brake controller, flushed all the brake fluid and replaced the rear disks and pads. A few months later, we found a solid deal on a 2012 Grey Wolf 26DBH from a private seller and purchased it in late October.

After the purchase was completed, I towed it 2.5 hours home with the Navigator. Getting the trailer moving from a stop and getting up hills is where the weakness of the SUV is very apparent. It labors pretty hard in these situations which is exactly what I expected. I was pleasantly surprised at how the rig towed down the highway though. It is my belief that the rounded front of the these trailers makes a big difference at 60 mph as it felt a lot like my old trailer that weighed 2000 less. I wasn't dealing with massive winds, but the short wheelbase of the Navi handled the trailer just fine. The only white knuckle moments came from narrowing lanes and heavy traffic due to road construction on the freeways surrounding Milwaukee.

Overall, the set up is satisfactory for my current camping plans. I will continue to be hyper-vigilant about maintenance with the Navigator and take it very slow. My employer has a truck scale on the premises and I have a few of my numbers to share.

Navigator (full tank of gas, rear seat removed, no passengers, just a few tools)
GVWR= 7200# GCWR= 14,000 scaled weight= 5800#
7200-5800= 1400 payload 1400-500 (passenger weight)= 900# (left for tongue weight and any other truck cargo)

Grey Wolf 26DBH (with propane tanks filled and battery installed and WD hitch, but no other cargo, water, bedding, cooking supplies, or gear.)
GVWR= 7740# scaled weight= 5900# Probable loaded weight <7000#

At 7000# I'll aim for 12.5% tongue weight which would be 875#. I plan to rescale the rig after we have it loaded for camping in a few weeks. I also plan to weigh the tongue to make sure I have it loaded correctly to get the desired 12-13%. We won't carry any cargo in the Navigator aside from passengers, dog, a few drinks and the kids hand held video games. The only time I would travel with any water is for hunting/boondocking trips and in those cases, I would have way less passenger weight in the truck.

My set up should be legally within the limits of my truck, but I felt it was a good example of how much thought and planning needs to go into using a marginal tow vehicle with a heavy trailer. Feel free to add anything that I have missed in my post. Hope this helps anyone considering a similar set up as I was just a few months ago.
__________________

__________________
2012 Grey Wolf DBH

1999 Lincoln Navigator 4X4 5.4L 32v Intech
Ryno22980 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2015, 11:18 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
thebrakeman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Canton, Michigan
Posts: 1,105
Your numbers (trailer cargo, TW%, etc) are conservative, and you are just within the limits for the truck's GVWR.

A big concern is the 31-ft length. Your WDH should be at least 1000 lbs rated, 1200 would be better. Do you have the Equal-I-zer or other system with integrated sway control?

How many miles on the reman trans? Be sure you follow any break-in period before towing duty (if applicable?). Don't let the trans hunt. Is it a 4 or 5-speed? Can OD be locked out if it starts to hunt?
__________________

__________________
thebrakeman ('70), DW ('71), DD ('99), DD ('01), DD ('05)
2004 Surveyor SV261T (UltraLite Bunkhouse Hybrid)
2006 Mercury Mountaineer V8 AWD Premier
Equal-i-zer WDH (10k), Prodigy Brake Controller
thebrakeman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2015, 06:42 PM   #3
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 43
I don't know the exact model of my weight distributing hitch as it was given to me with the trailer at purchase. It is a Reese, is rated for 1000# tongue weight, and has sway control.

I know the wheelbase of my Navigator is not ideal, but control felt totally fine on the interstate with the rig. This is my 2nd TT, my last one was 26 ft. and 2000# lighter, but I have moderate experience with towing. The bottom line is that we only camp within 120 miles of home at this time, and have no mountainous terrain to deal with here in Wisconsin. In 2 years we will make a significant upgrade in tow vehicle.

The tranny has about 10K miles since the rebuild and should be good to go. It's a 4 speed and I always tow with OD off.
__________________
2012 Grey Wolf DBH

1999 Lincoln Navigator 4X4 5.4L 32v Intech
Ryno22980 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2015, 08:17 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
MagnoliaTom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 316
You should look at getting a ford excursion. You'll have no problems pulling with it. Make sure you avoid the 5.4 gas engine. The diesel or v10 will pull it with ease


Sent from my iPhone using Forest River Forums
__________________
2014 Freedom Express 320BHDS Liberty Edition 50th Anniversary
2005 F250 Lariat SuperCrew 6.0 PS Diesel
2004 Excursion Limited 4x4 6.0 PS Diesel
2000 Excursion Limited 7.3 PS Diesel Sold:crying

MagnoliaTom is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2015, 07:31 AM   #5
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by MagnoliaTom View Post
You should look at getting a ford excursion. You'll have no problems pulling with it. Make sure you avoid the 5.4 gas engine. The diesel or v10 will pull it with ease


Sent from my iPhone using Forest River Forums
I actually want a truck with a bed as I would rather have the ability to carry dirty items like deer, generator, and bicycles than have the extra seating we rarely ever use.

It will come down to either a F250 diesel crewcab or a Toyota Tundra 5.7L crewmax. I would like the massive towing ability of an F250 diesel, but I wouldn't be able to fit it in my garage and I'm not sure that towing less 2000 miles per year makes it worth the diesel. I would like to keep the body rust free as long as possible, and leaving it outside in the elements all winter does not make me happy.

I'm leaning toward the Tundra as it would fit in my garage, easier to drive the other 8000 non-towing miles per year, and I like the appearance better. It gets the best reliability ratings on Consumer Reports. Plus since I only plan to spend around $20-$25K on it, I would be able to afford a newer Tundra vs. the Superduty. The payload capacity would still be tight with the Crewmax, but the wheelbase would be much better, and the drivetrain power/gearing would be great.
__________________
2012 Grey Wolf DBH

1999 Lincoln Navigator 4X4 5.4L 32v Intech
Ryno22980 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2015, 01:23 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Rvdixie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Zephyrhills, FL
Posts: 151
What about a Ford F150 Eco Boost with the heavy duty towing package. Will tow up to 12200 lbs and is low enough to just fit in the standard garage. The height of the 250 is what kept me from buying it. Keeping it garaged is most important to me. Mine is on order but I drove one the dealer had as a demo and I was blown away by the power. In addition I will be able to afford to drive it when I'm not towing. 20 to 24 miles per gallon
__________________
Richard & Rosalba Charron
Zephyrhills, FL
2015 Ford F150 Eco Boost
2016 Coachmen Chaparral Lite 29MKS
Rvdixie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2015, 01:41 PM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 43
The ecoboost F150 might be out of my price range as I can't go that new. Not a fan of being a pioneer of a new design. The ecoboost might be great and hold up awesome, but the track record isn't long enough for me to feel comfortable.

I have always been a Ford guy, but I have had 2 good friends with newer F150s have enormous problems lately. At the same time, my step-dad, who had always been a Ford man, bought a Tundra and it's had zero issues even with high milage. Most of the '07 and up Tundras with the tow package have the 6 speed tranny with the 4.33 rear end. That steep of gearing will make a gas engine behave as close as possible to a diesel. If I go half ton, I'm definitely going with a Tundra.
__________________
2012 Grey Wolf DBH

1999 Lincoln Navigator 4X4 5.4L 32v Intech
Ryno22980 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2015, 01:34 AM   #8
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 43
Thank you for the input though, I've learned a lot just searching and browsing this forum. I pulled the trigger on purchasing our Grey Wolf mainly because I read about another member successfully towing one with their Tahoe. I expected a lousy towing experience, but it hasn't been that bad.

I might tick off a few drivers behind me by going slower, but at least I'll get some of my money out of that new tranny before I cut bait on the Navigator and upgrade.
__________________

__________________
2012 Grey Wolf DBH

1999 Lincoln Navigator 4X4 5.4L 32v Intech
Ryno22980 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
towing

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




ForestRiverForums.com is not in any way associated with Forest River, Inc. or its associated RV manufacturing divisions.


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:40 PM.