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Old 05-03-2013, 06:30 PM   #1
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Need Advice - Supplemental Toad Braking Needed Or Not?

I need some advice on whether or not I should have or really need a supplemental braking system on our Tow vehicle. Here is the setup. Motorhome is a 2008 Lexington model 283GTS on a Ford E450 Super Duty Chassis. Tow vehicle is a 2007 Saturn Ion that weighs in at 2700 Lbs. Tow bar is a Roadmaster Falcon 2. The Legal requirement here in Florida is 3000 lb towed vehicle and up must have a supplemental braking system installed but with our Saturn Ion at 2700 lbs. Therefore we are "legal" at least in Florida. I have done a bit of research into these systems and have some knowledge of the older style Brake-Buddy and the newer Invisibrake from Roadmaster. They are all a bit pricey at around $1200-$1300 (installed for the Invisibrake at Camping World). Are there any other brands that I should be considering and is a supplemental braking system really needed? Thanks and I will appreciate any suggestions.
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Old 05-03-2013, 06:52 PM   #2
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On one hand if your "LEGAL" in your state of registration you'll be legal in all 50 states. That being said what will your Gross Combined Weight be with the Saturn in tow? If the Saturn in tow puts you right at Gross Combined Weight, with the camper loaded for camping, then for SAFETY SAKES I'd for sure use and aux brake sys on the Saturn.
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Old 05-03-2013, 06:54 PM   #3
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I pull my FIAT 500 without any assisted braking system because it weighs only 2,363 lbs. Now I'm pulling it with my 37 ft Georgetown motorhome 378TS with the Ford V10 and is on a 22,000 lbs. chassis. I have power boost braking and can easily pull and stop my little toad. My max trailer hitch is 5,000 lbs. Now I have over 16,000 miles and have travelled almost 100% of the time with the toad.

Now with that information you have to decide how your rig pulls the car on the highway and are you able to stop safely with your brakes.

Unofficially with your rig I wouldn't have any problem towing it without any assited brakes.
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Old 05-03-2013, 07:37 PM   #4
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What do these ratings mean on our 2008 Lexington?

Can someone tell me what the different weight ratings are on my 2008 Lexington 283GTS. The ratings are as follows;

GVWR - 14500
GAWRR - 9500
GAWRF - 5000
UVW - 12500
GCWR - 20000

Thanks again
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Old 05-03-2013, 07:43 PM   #5
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I tow a Ford Focus at around 2900 lbs. I use the Brake Buddy, older style. I like the added safety of having the braking system and some do not. As far as price, I bought mine off of Ebay for about 1/3 or original price. You may want to check there and peruse the classified area of this forum and other forums i.e. IRV2. They have a large classified section over there.

As I said earlier, this is a personal thing. But, I don't leave home without my Buddy!
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Old 05-03-2013, 08:01 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rpgibbs View Post
Can someone tell me what the different weight ratings are on my 2008 Lexington 283GTS. The ratings are as follows;

GVWR - 14500
GAWRR - 9500
GAWRF - 5000
UVW - 12500
GCWR - 20000

Thanks again
Everything you wanted to know!!!

The RR-Right Rear, LR-Left Rear, RF-Right Front, LF-Left Front

GVW: Gross Vehicle Weight
GVW Includes, Curb Weight, Cargo Weight, Persons weight
Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) is the actual weight of the fully loaded vehicle or trailer, including all cargo, fluids, passengers, and optional equipment, as measured by a scale.

GVWR: Gross Vehicle Weight Rating
Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) is the maximum number that the GVW or GTW should never exceed. GVWR is applied to trailers as well as vehicles, but you may see this rating referred to as the Maximum Loaded Trailer Weight

GTW: Gross Trailer Weight
GTW Includes, All GAW's, Tongue Weight or King Ping Weight, Weight on all deployed jacks
Gross Trailer Weight (GTW) is the same as Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) when referring to a trailer. While GVW can be applied to tow vehicles and trailers, GTW makes it clear that we are speaking of a trailer.

GCW: Gross Combination Weight
GCW Includes, GVW of tow vehicle, GVW of towed vehicle
Gross Combination Weight (GCW) is the actual weight of the fully loaded tow vehicle plus the towed vehicle (trailer, car, boat, etc.), including all cargo, fluids, passengers, and optional equipment.

GCWR: Gross Combination Weight Rating
Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR) is the maximum number that the tow vehicle GVW plus towed vehicle GVW (or GTW) should never exceed.

GAW: Gross Axle Weight
Gross Axle Weight (GAW) is the actual weight placed on a single axle. Assuming a well-balanced vehicle, the GAW is then evenly distributed to all tires on that axle.

GAWR: Gross Axle Weight Rating
Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR) is the maximum number that the GAW of a single axle should never exceed. You may see the more specific RGAWR, when referring to the rear axle, or FGAWR, when referring to the front axle.

Tongue Weight or King Pin Weight
Tongue Weight (also called Tongue Load) is the actual weight pressing down on the hitch ball by the trailer. The recommended amount of Tongue Weight is 10-15% of the GTW.

Curb Weight
Curb Weight Includes, Vehicle weight with standard equipment only, Full fuel tank weight, Full fresh water tank(s) weight, Full propane container weight, Equipment fluids weight
Curb Weight is the actual weight of a vehicle or trailer including all standard equipment, full fuel tanks, full fresh water tanks, full propane bottles, and all other equipment fluids, but before taking on any persons or personal cargo.

Dry Weight
Dry Weight is the actual weight of a vehicle or trailer containing standard equipment without fuel, fluids, cargo, passengers, or optional equipment.

UVW: Unloaded Vehicle Weight
UVW Includes, Vehicle weight as manufactured at the factory, Full fuel tank weight, Equipment fluids weight
Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW) is the weight of a vehicle as manufactured at the factory. It includes full engine and generator fuel tanks and fluids, if applicable. It does not include cargo, water, propane, or dealer-installed accessories. Be aware that some manufacturers weigh each unit to determine UVW, while others provide only the average or estimated weight for each model.

Cargo Weight
Cargo Weight Includes, Personal cargo weight, Optional equipment weight, Tongue Weight or King Ping Weight
Cargo Weight is the actual weight of all items added to the Curb Weight of the vehicle or trailer. This includes personal cargo, optional equipment, and Tongue or King Pin Weight.

Payload
Payload Includes, Cargo Weight, Persons weight
Even though it does not include an R, Payload is a weight rating. It is the maximum weight that persons plus cargo should never exceed.
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Old 05-03-2013, 08:45 PM   #7
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Now you also have to take into consideration on your GVW passengers, fuel, water and all the junk you bring along.

Multiply your water and a full tank of fuel by 8.33 lbs per gallon.

Here is a way to find out what the actual states laws are for towning.
http://www.readybrake.com/state_laws.html
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Old 05-03-2013, 09:18 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rpgibbs View Post
I need some advice on whether or not I should have or really need a supplemental braking system on our Tow vehicle. Here is the setup. Motorhome is a 2008 Lexington model 283GTS on a Ford E450 Super Duty Chassis. Tow vehicle is a 2007 Saturn Ion that weighs in at 2700 Lbs. Tow bar is a Roadmaster Falcon 2. The Legal requirement here in Florida is 3000 lb towed vehicle and up must have a supplemental braking system installed but with our Saturn Ion at 2700 lbs. Therefore we are "legal" at least in Florida. I have done a bit of research into these systems and have some knowledge of the older style Brake-Buddy and the newer Invisibrake from Roadmaster. They are all a bit pricey at around $1200-$1300 (installed for the Invisibrake at Camping World). Are there any other brands that I should be considering and is a supplemental braking system really needed? Thanks and I will appreciate any suggestions.
All depends on where you are. All states are listed in Trailer Life Directory among other places. They indicate when Trailer/Toad vehicles must be fitted with TV operated brakes. Some are 1K, 2K or 3K max before brakes must be fitted. Your M/H has plenty of capacity, limit will be the hitch fitted. Most class C are fitted with 3500# hitches. These State liimits are not the same as tow ratings of the vehicles doing the towing.
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Old 05-03-2013, 10:07 PM   #9
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Hitch rating

The hitch rating on the Ford E450 Super Duty chassis that this motorhome is built on is rated at 5000 lb. So you think the chassis weight rating and 5000 lb hitch rating should be sufficient to tow the 2700lb Saturn Ion? Thanks
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Old 05-03-2013, 11:02 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rpgibbs View Post
The hitch rating on the Ford E450 Super Duty chassis that this motorhome is built on is rated at 5000 lb. So you think the chassis weight rating and 5000 lb hitch rating should be sufficient to tow the 2700lb Saturn Ion? Thanks
Your tow figures look more than enough, just checked FL. Requires brakes at 3000+ lbs. Look good to go.
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