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Old 12-13-2012, 08:32 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by WarMovies View Post
I have a hitch on already. It was after factory. 500/5000. Too small.
If that is the only numbers on the hitch, then yes it is too small, and maybe even not recommended for a weight distributing hitch. If it has a 2nd set of numbers, something like 900/9000 weight distributing ratings, then that hitch should work. As far as I know, receiver hitches that are made to work with weight distributing systems will always have 2 sets of numbers for both the tongue weight and total trailer weight.........weight carrying capacities and weight distributing capacities.

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2. The transmission cooler. I will have to look into that.
All vehicles with automatic transmissions have a transmission cooler......it is built into the radiator. The part needed for towing is an auxiliary transmission cooler. If you have 1, it will look like a small radiator somewhere in the front of your vehicle where it can get air. If you have something like that trace the lines.....1 line should come out of the radiator, and the other goes back to the transmission. The reason I mention that is the air-conditioner condenser is also in that area, and those lines will go to the air-conditional system.

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3. Extra capacity alternator. I have no idea. I will look into that as well Why this if I may ask?
Not necessarily needed.

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4. Do you add the tongue weight to the GVWR of the van?
Yes. The total of both tow vehicles axles will determine what your tow vehicle weighs. Adding a trailer with a 700 lb. tongue weight will increase the weight on the tow vehicle 700 lbs. When using a WDH, some of that weight will be transferred back to the trailer axles (probably around 100 lbs), as well as getting some of the weight off of the rear TV axle, and putting more weight on the front TV axle. You can only transfer a certain amount of weight back to the trailer axles with the WDH, as you do not want to overload the front TV axles.

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5. I agree that it would be a tight fit in terms of overall weight. My figures were bringing me close to the 12,000 and that wasnt including tongue weight.
The tongue weight is already figured into the total weight of the trailer when figuring the GCWR.

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The only way to know for sure would be to load it up and get it weighed. If I use the gear I have for camping now (and no more) thats doable.
You have already done some of that by getting the empty weight of the van. Now get the driver and all of the passengers on some scales, and see what the total is. Weigh your camping gear, and add that in. Add those 2 numbers to the 5860 empty weight of the van, subtract that from the 7000 lb. GVWR, and see what you have left for tongue weight.

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What I would like to accompish is to see how well the van does with the bigger camper. It seems to me that I'm right at the limit. Limits are there for a reason. But then there is no rule that says you need to keep X amount of lbs away from that limit either...or is there?
The manufacture sets GVWR and GCWR limits for a reason....those are the maximum weights that have been determined that the vehicle can safely handle. The more you can stay under those weights, the better.
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Old 12-22-2012, 01:22 AM   #12
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WarMovies, your van, with the factory tow package, should be able to tow the 233S, even with the 3.55 rear end ratio.

by adding a tranny cooler and not overloading the van, you should be fine pulling the 233S.
TOWING VEHICLE UPDATE....

Thanks for all of the input. I agree with the conclusion that with a few modifications I should be able to tow the 233s with my Ford E150 5.4. However, further thought led me to think about a different TV and to that end I have decided to pull the trigger on something that should give me lots more breathing room.

I have been towing a 2,000lb pop up (no brakes) with my current TV and have overall had no problems towing but have had to be unnecessarily vigilant with every stop at any speed to protect my brakes. Staying with the current TV would have left me in a place I'd rather not be...under powered and watching every pound I load into the trailer. I imagined myself weighing the kids travel bags before we load up. I would not have enjoyed telling my copilot that she needs to limit her water bottle size to 12oz either.

Who knows how it would have all turned out. I might have been fine just rather sluggish and lacking ooomph. That wasnt a place we were comfortable with. Copilot made it clear she'd rather not put another $ into the E150 to help matters along. Why upgrade a hitch..install a tranny cooler...change out some springs/shocks or mess with the gears only to find out I have a dog on my hands. A dog with 213,000 miles none the less. So with that...here are the numbers of the current and new. I do have a couple of questions too that I could use some input on. I welcome any other input as well.

CURRENT TV
1999 Ford E150 5.4L (Conversion Van)
GVWR: 7000
Unloaded Weight 5,860
GCWR: 12,000
Towing Capacity: 6,900
Rear Axle Ratio: 3.55
Towing Hitch Rating: 500/5000 (Would need to have upgraded to 1000,10,000)

NEW TV
2006 Chevy 2500 6.0 (Conversion Van)
GVWR: 8,600
Unloaded Weight: ? (Will need to weigh it after purchase)
GCWR: 14,000
Towing Capacity: 8,300
Rear Axle Ratio: 3.73
Towing Hitch Rating: ? (Will upgrade to 1000/10,000 if rating is lower than this)

TRAILER
Roo 233s
Dry Weight 4,351
Cargo Capacity 1,833
GVWR 6,184
Hitch Weight 647 (empty)

I plan on installing a Blue Ox WDH (1,000 lbs). Everyone seems to have their favorite and I am going with what RVW's choice and that is the Blue Ox.

My questions are as follows:

1. Is a WDH (weight distribution) still necessary or would something for 'sway only' be sufficient?
2. Who knows anything about BlueOx? Are the chains a liability...an improvement? Ease of use?
3. This was a difficult van (in a conversion)to find with the specs we wanted and in the price range/mileage we were looking for. Most conversion vans are E150 or 1500's. Are there others currently towing with a 2500 6.0 Van who could give me some input as to how things are working out for them? Anyone pulling a 233s with one?
4. Am I missing something??
5. When does camping season start???

In a weeks time I am closing on a camper and TV. My 2013 Roo233s is waiting for me on RVW's lot in Ohio. I am set drive out there the 26th to sign papers..do the walk through and return home empty handed the next day (not interested in towing her back home in winter). I have plans to pick up with new TV at the end of March. I also will be closing on the van next week and having it loaded onto a truck in San Diego to be delivered to Minnesota....God knows when (hopefully before the end of March!). They tell me delivery will take about a week.
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Old 12-22-2012, 02:04 AM   #13
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Is the SanDiego Van a (SUS) or did you see & drive it? If the Van was purchased (SUS) used why not just send a check to (RVW) for a (NEW) trailer? Pick up in March,and go camping! No deadhead involved. Youroo!!
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Old 12-22-2012, 11:37 PM   #14
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What is a SUS?

Van is being purchased with family in San Diego taking for a test drive and reporting back with additional pictures detailing other items needing attention. I also paid for presale inspection.

Camper is brand new. We shopped locally to determine which models and mfg we preferred. The deal with RVW is we are required to close in person as financing w/them for one year is required.
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Old 12-23-2012, 07:13 AM   #15
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Sight un-seen. Youroo!!
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Old 12-23-2012, 11:22 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by WarMovies View Post
1. Is a WDH (weight distribution) still necessary or would something for 'sway only' be sufficient?
You will still need a WDH. Even though you are buying a 3/4 ton van, there will still be hitch maximum weight ratings, and you will want to get weight back on the front axle so the van will still it handle well. An WDH with integrated sway control should work well.

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4. Am I missing something??
The 3/4 ton conversion van should be a better tow vehicle than the 1/2 ton van, but there will still be limitations. 1st off, conversion vans typically weigh more than their cargo van cousins. The raised roof, extra seats and options add up. So even though you will have a 8600 lb. GVWR, the empty weight will be more, but should leave you with a increased payload over the 1/2 ton van.

Even though the new van has a tow rating of 8300 lbs, that will be reduced as you load up the van. If you happen to max out the GVWR of the van, then your maximum trailer weight would only be 5400 lbs. (14,000 lbs. GCWR - 8600 lbs.)

Looks like you are on the right path !! As I posted before, it is great that you are asking all of the right questions beforehand for a safe and pleasurable towing experience.
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Old 12-26-2012, 02:46 PM   #17
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I am asking the right questions because I've already done lots of homework. A significant portion of that homework has been done being a sponge and pilfering this forum.

I am scheduling a walk thru on the 233s either this week or next and will post the results. I'm a little apprehensive about the bunk ends or more specifically the seals and the new permanently affixed canvas (w/no flap). It looks like trouble to be honest. I've read the threads with horror stories and wonder if that is to be my lot. I've did the pop up thing for 11 years with ZERO issues. I will be keeping an open mind and desire any input from others what to look for that might give hint of issues that are already in existence. I've read about rusty screws.

Thanks to everyone who has posted to this btw. You all have been very helpful.


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Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
You will still need a WDH. Even though you are buying a 3/4 ton van, there will still be hitch maximum weight ratings, and you will want to get weight back on the front axle so the van will still it handle well. An WDH with integrated sway control should work well.



The 3/4 ton conversion van should be a better tow vehicle than the 1/2 ton van, but there will still be limitations. 1st off, conversion vans typically weigh more than their cargo van cousins. The raised roof, extra seats and options add up. So even though you will have a 8600 lb. GVWR, the empty weight will be more, but should leave you with a increased payload over the 1/2 ton van.

Even though the new van has a tow rating of 8300 lbs, that will be reduced as you load up the van. If you happen to max out the GVWR of the van, then your maximum trailer weight would only be 5400 lbs. (14,000 lbs. GCWR - 8600 lbs.)

Looks like you are on the right path !! As I posted before, it is great that you are asking all of the right questions beforehand for a safe and pleasurable towing experience.
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Old 12-26-2012, 04:11 PM   #18
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WarMovies, i did an extensive look at the new design.
i posted pics of the outside and inside of the new canvas attachment system.
installed correctly, i don't see a need for flaps.

not sure where the thread is of the pics but i can look for it if you can't find it.

my Roo has the older bungee system and flaps are needed since the edges of the canvas are not closed off securely.
but this new design is basically a sealed-off tent end, even over the hinge area.
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