Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-24-2009, 06:51 AM   #1
Member
 
TheDiGs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Colorado Springs
Posts: 41
Question New RVer, need truck advice

Hi(first post), hopefully I picked the right forum

We're kind of doing it backwards, but we purchased an '04 25' Wildwood yesterday, however we don't have a vehicle to tow it with yet. We plan to buy a truck in the next few weeks, and just happened to stumble across a deal on the TT this week.

Military family, currently stationed in Alaska, expecting to tow the camper from Alaska to Florida next year (to give an idea of the "stress" we expect to put on the truck, will likely take about 2 weeks to make the trip, with a few stops along the way of course)

The truck we are most interested in is the 09/10 Tundra Double Cab with either a standard or long bed. We will get the towing package on it to tow 10,300, but in my reading about towing and weights tonight, I seem to understand that weight isn't exactly as it seems.

I do not have a manual on the Wildwood, according to the registration, it's 5200lbs, the GVWR on the TT plate says 7515. I do not have the capability to take it and put it on a scale until I buy a truck, so any advice is welcome.

I'm looking for information about whether the Tundra is going to be too stressed pulling this camper, whether I need to consider other trucks (we did look at the GMC 2500HD today, I still prefer the Tundra). I do need the truck to be able to handle any type of towing conditions (steep grades, wind, etc)

I read the thread regarding the 2008 Tundra, and I think we'll be ok, but I'd like some advice and thoughts from you experienced folks rather than trusting what a salesman tells us.

Thanks for any advice!
__________________

__________________
TheDiGs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2009, 08:18 AM   #2
Junior Member
 
Toolpusher's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 19
Tow vehicle

Just my 2 cents,
the Tundra would probably work. I have heard a lot of good things about it. I have a rockwood Signature Ultralight 8319SS - loaded with all of our stuff (I mean stuff too) I'm probably around 7400 gross weight. I had a 2001 Ford Supercrew that would pull it (salesman said it would) and it did but I was not really comfortable with it. I would not have undertaken the kind of trip you are about to embark on. Anyway, I had the chance to upgrade to a Ford 2009 F250 Crewcab Powerstroke Diesel. Difference as night and day. Much better satisfied. Mileage is pretty good (nothing spectacular but no truck pulling will give great gas mileage) Good luck in your choice.

David
__________________

__________________
2009 Rockwood Signature Ultra Lite 8319SS
2009 Ford F-250 CrewCab 4x4 - 6.4 Powerstroke Diesel
Toolpusher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2009, 09:49 AM   #3
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Salado, TX
Posts: 25
The Tundra should work fine.

cliff
__________________
grittyoctopi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2009, 10:07 AM   #4
Moderator Emeritus
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Winston-Salem, NC
Posts: 2,381
Even though you are making one long trip, what are you going to be doing the rest of the time? That would help me determine the truck. If you are towing a lot, got to be a diesel. If you tow occasionally, a gas truck will work. The diesel would be best for your trip, but not if you aren't going to tow after that. Those that tow regularly won't have anything but a diesel, but they're not the best short commuter truck. I'm a Ford person, and I would want at 3/4 ton diesel, 2500 series for your trip. Too much truck for a 10 mile commute. If it's only one long tow, the Toyota should work. It's only once and you can live with a few shortcomings, and expect some maintenance when you get through, tranny flush. Then you have a nice truck to ride around in. If you're going to tow a lot, then look at a different truck. If they're short tows, in Florida, the GM 2500 gas will work. All of this said, I'm assuming you'll need the truck for regular driving. Get a truck your comfortable with for what you'll be doing the most with it. Can't drive a school bus just to take the church group to camp once a year. Last thought, rent a heavy duty truck to tow your camper across country. Could use the money saved by not buying a diesel to rent a 2500 series truck. Put the wife and children in the Toyota. Good luck with your search.
__________________
LadyWindrider
2012 Ford F250 ext. Cab 4x4
2002 Jeep Wrangler Sahara
2008 Yamaha V-Star 650 Classic

2008 Work and Play 18LT
LadyWindrider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2009, 10:51 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Jacksonville Florida
Posts: 1,263
I agree with windrider- RENT a heavy duty truck for the pull. I would NOT want to pull anything close to 10,000 lbs. with a 1/2 ton truck of ANY manufacturer! Also, as previously stated, a gas engine will probably work, BUT a diesel is made for pulling and has plenty of torque to do the job properly, with MUCH less strain on your vehicle, and a heavier duty transmission. My rig as you see what I have, I really feel that I need a 2500 diesel for this, and it's only 7575 lbs. (dry and empty) I have a 3:46 rear that should have been steeper- say a 3:92 or so. Then it would pull okay, but I still get stiffness issues- not stiff enough suspension. I have added extra leaf springs, and I now haveBilstein shocks on order, that will hopefully help my situation. I would definitely NOT want to pull my camper in any mountains- I don't think this Dodge would be able to handle it! Ask the "Toy" dealer if you can "test pull" your camper before you purchase their truck, and look at some Tundra forums on towing, to see how others are doing- I've heard the rear ends are a weak link on these- but RESEARCH yourself first. If it was me I'd AT LEAST go with a USA built 2500- diesel or gas... if you must. GOOD LUCK on your decision, as I bought truck first, then camper, and I really need more truck! Randy
__________________
/SIGPIC]'08 V-lite Flagstaff 30WRLS
'06 Ram 1500 QC hemi Reese dual cam sway control,
K&N series 77 intake, Hellwig helper spgs. LT tires,
Flowmaster "true duals", 380 h.p., Bilstein shocks
08flagvlite is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2009, 10:59 AM   #6
Member
 
TheDiGs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Colorado Springs
Posts: 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by windrider View Post
Even though you are making one long trip, what are you going to be doing the rest of the time? That would help me determine the truck. If you are towing a lot, got to be a diesel. If you tow occasionally, a gas truck will work. The diesel would be best for your trip, but not if you aren't going to tow after that. Those that tow regularly won't have anything but a diesel, but they're not the best short commuter truck. I'm a Ford person, and I would want at 3/4 ton diesel, 2500 series for your trip. Too much truck for a 10 mile commute. If it's only one long tow, the Toyota should work. It's only once and you can live with a few shortcomings, and expect some maintenance when you get through, tranny flush. Then you have a nice truck to ride around in. If you're going to tow a lot, then look at a different truck. If they're short tows, in Florida, the GM 2500 gas will work. All of this said, I'm assuming you'll need the truck for regular driving. Get a truck your comfortable with for what you'll be doing the most with it. Can't drive a school bus just to take the church group to camp once a year. Last thought, rent a heavy duty truck to tow your camper across country. Could use the money saved by not buying a diesel to rent a 2500 series truck. Put the wife and children in the Toyota. Good luck with your search.
(I'm the wife, and while I'm thrilled to finally be buying another truck, I am absolutely in love with my 6 yr old Chevy minivan for hauling around 4 kids, 5 cats, a large parrot, two smaller birds, and sometimes a dog)

Hubby is not a fan of diesel, I prefer it for longevity and towing capacity. I'm a redneck, he's a city clicker who barely sees a need for 4WD. I'd live on the side of a mountain if I could. Compromise has to come into play with the truck for many reasons.

My top priority, above all, is that my children are safe, so I require great crash ratings, and any extra features, standard or available, to achieve that, are a priority for me. ESC is standard on the Tundra, that's a big draw, the price of the Tundra is impressive, and I just generally like the truck after looking at all the major brands for the past 5 months. (We started looking when hubby came home on R&R, he returned from deployment last week, so we're in the final stages of ready to buy)

We retire in less than 3 years from active duty, the economy being what it is, and trying to enter the civilian job market at 45 is a large concern for us, and we're definitely taking the price of the vehicle into mind due to that. That said, price is only one of the things that's important with this purchase.

As for towing, I can't answer it yet. Currently we have a popup camper, we've owned it 5 years, and the first 2 years we owned it, we used it a great deal, 4-8 times per summer, and regularly towed it around Alaska on 700-900 mile round trips. After that, my van began overheating when we were towing, so we just started staying in hotels so as not to tax her. I don't know whether we will become avid RVers once we are back in the lower 48 or not, there's only so many times we're interested in heading to the same campgrounds in Alaska, though. We do enjoy traveling, and will be more apt to do so with a camper, I'm sure.

In the long term, I would say the camper would mostly travel between Florida and Colorado, in the short term, I know it will go Alaska to Florida and then on to our next duty station, wherever that may be.

Renting a vehicle to tow the camper would totally defeat the purpose of buying a truck at all, and we may as well just buy another minivan and pay to have the camper shipped or just sell the camper. The camper will be used to live in for periods of weeks to months when we move to a new duty station, and for traveling to visit relatives, of course.

We do have to take into account the time of year we have to travel the Alaska highway, and the scarcity of gas and particularly diesel along the route (possibly it has improved in the 5 years since we last drove it, but at that time, gas stations were few and far between and many had already closed for the season, several times we barely made it to a station before running out of gas, and of those times, at least a couple of the stations didn't offer diesel at all). Diesel is not necessarily eliminated as an option, but both the price of a diesel truck and the trouble with access make it fairly undesireable for us if there is a gas alternative that will be sufficient.

Of the trucks we've looked at, we will not consider a Dodge, and we are largely unimpressed with the Fords. The Titan doesn't appeal for many reasons. I do like GM (and I'm a sucker for the sappy OnStar commercials!) but I have concerns about the longterm vs. the Tundra. I plan to drive this truck for the next 20+ years. This truck is the first new vehicle we have ever purchased (usually buy used or lease vehicles), and likely be the last new vehicle we ever buy. Hubby isn't much interested in buying a used truck, concern over the 4WD, and just the fact of having to travel the Alaska Highway and the time of year we will be traveling, he prefers something new this time.

I apologize for the length, hopefully that will give you some idea of what will best suit our needs. I am biased toward the Tundra, as it is the truck I want, but if it isn't going to work for the camper long term, then we need to look at other options.
__________________
TheDiGs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2009, 02:11 PM   #7
Moderator Emeritus
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Winston-Salem, NC
Posts: 2,381
Toyota?

Based on what you said, you're heart is set on the Toyota, and you'll be hard to convince otherwise, regardless of towing numbers, of mileage, or anything else. If you are going to live in the camper, i.e it's your house, you''re not going to camp. Nobody takes their house out for week-end. You may move it once a year to travel to Colorado, 3000 miles from Florida. Do the math at 50 miles per hour, that's over 60 hours driving one way. 120 hours round trip at 10 hour per day equals 10 days travel, with kids, dogs, birds, etc. 2 weeks off work, impossible for a new employee, and that leaves only 2 days to visit. Besides you can't put everybody in the truck to travel. You can't make over 10 hours per day because you have to set-up and tear down every day. Now if you still want to pull it to Colorado, how about a nice 2500 series van? Replace the minivan you have now. Not many tow with a van, but they are capable. More homework, sorry. I'm just trying to see the whole picture and help you out. Like you said, last new vehicle for 20 years.
__________________
LadyWindrider
2012 Ford F250 ext. Cab 4x4
2002 Jeep Wrangler Sahara
2008 Yamaha V-Star 650 Classic

2008 Work and Play 18LT
LadyWindrider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2009, 02:47 PM   #8
Member
 
TheDiGs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Colorado Springs
Posts: 41
Hi Wind,

I appreciate your patience with me, and honestly, I am paying attention. In the past few hours, I've gotten quite an eduction and I think I'm down to the point with weights that I see the Toyota isn't going to be viable.

We aren't going to live in the camper....but we will have to for a few short periods. We're military, in the past we have had to live in hotel rooms (with the kids, cats, dog) for 40 and 47 days. That's while waiting for our house to be available, and then leaving out of a post, we're in a hotel room for a week or two, plus while traveling to the new duty station.

Those are the times we would live in the camper...otherwise, it would be used as a typical camper, taken to campgrounds for weekend trips, plopping it on a relative's property for a week visit, etc. I'm not sure what you mean about not being able to put everyone into the truck to travel? (And when we travel for fun (ie. not moving from one duty station to another) we only take the kids, we hire people to care for the pets at home) In addition, one kid is 16, and another is 17, so by the time we move from Alaska, after that trip is made, it would just be hubby and I, and a couple 13-ish kids.

I've spent most of the morning on the phone with Forest River trying to get specific weights for the camper (5185 dry, 7515 GVWR, 515 tongue) and weights for the Tundra (GCWR 16,000; Payload 1640/1465, Curb Weight 5460/5660, GVWR 7100/7200)

I believe the GVWR for the Tundra is off a bit, in the numbers above it's standard bed/long bed for the Super cab (not Crew), but I can get that out of the brochure when I go to the dealer this afternoon. The GCWR was hell to come up with, but now that I'm slowly starting to comprehend what all the weights mean, I see Payload is where we are going to run into the problem.

Yesterday, I thought the Tundra towing 10,200 was sufficient for a camper weighing 7515...today I understand it's not that simple. I promise I AM reading what you are saying, not getting a Tundra won't break my heart, but if something else is going to break my budget, I may have to sell this camper and either skip the RV idea at this point in our lives, or find a much lighter one.

Buying a truck is a definite, and that's really about the only definite right now. Buying a truck that suits what we want (longevity, safety, price, etc) is the biggest priority, and my goal is for that to fit the camper. If it doesn't, or can't, then the camper will either have to be eliminated or have to get lighter. Yesterday, I was thrilled with the Tundra, I thought it met my needs. Today I see it probably isn't going to, so I need to see if I can find another truck that does.

Anyway, I'm rambling, I DO appreciate your help, advice, and even a kick in the pants if that's what I need to see reason, I promise I'm trying to learn fast though
__________________
Me, Him, a bunch of kids and cats, one loud-mouthed parrot, and one spoiled rotten Shih Poo

2009 Chevy 2500HD 4x4 Crew Cab
2014 33' SOB TT
TheDiGs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2009, 03:55 PM   #9
Moderator Emeritus
 
MtnGuy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Shenandoah Valley
Posts: 9,274
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDiGs View Post
I've spent most of the morning on the phone with Forest River trying to get specific weights for the camper (5185 dry, 7515 GVWR, 515 tongue) and weights for the Tundra (GCWR 16,000; Payload 1640/1465, Curb Weight 5460/5660, GVWR 7100/7200)

I believe the GVWR for the Tundra is off a bit, in the numbers above it's standard bed/long bed for the Super cab (not Crew), but I can get that out of the brochure when I go to the dealer this afternoon. The GCWR was hell to come up with, but now that I'm slowly starting to comprehend what all the weights mean, I see Payload is where we are going to run into the problem.
You are correct about the payload might be a concern. Your trailer and mine are similar, as I have a 7559 GVWR, and am pulling about 5500 lbs. ready for camping.

Beware of the 515 tongue weight....that will probably grow as you add camping gear. The brochure on SV 263 states 559 lbs., but I have ~800 lbs. on the tongue ready to camp. Most of that weight is now added to my payload, although I do put about 200 lbs. back on my trailer axles with the WDH. But with 2 people, a dog, generator, canoe, bikes, firewood, and other stuff, I am approaching my 7200 lb. GVWR rating.

Don't be afraid of a gasser. I have a 2006 Ford F150, 4x4, 5.4L engine, and 3.73 gears. I pulls our trailer great. The new Tundras have it all over the older Fords like mine, with a bigger engine and more gears in the tranny.

1 thing that hasn't been mentioned in this thread is wheelbase. You are trying to decide between a short and long bed pickup, and usually (depending on the cab setup) the long beds have longer wheelbases. Check out the stats on the different combinations of cabs and beds. I have a 145" wheelbase, and according to some charts I am pulling pretty close to the max with my (total length) 28.5' trailer.
__________________

Chap , DW Joy, and Fur Baby Sango
2017 F350 Lariat CCSB, SRW, 4x4, 6.7 PS
2017 Grand Design Reflection 337RLS
MtnGuy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2009, 05:58 PM   #10
Moderator Emeritus
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Winston-Salem, NC
Posts: 2,381
Know what to do

Looking at 4 children and 2 adults, that's 6 in the truck. My 4 door super crew only has 5 seat belts, so that is the max number of people I can put in. It's not how many will fit, it's how many seat belts do you have. Besides, 3 on the front bench can be a crowd, especially when towing. Assuming you are going to loose some children, now you know what to do. The Toyota is out, so research the Chevy next. Then pick out a Ford, and so on. Eliminate them from being able to tow what you want, if that is most important. Once you get 2 or 3 that fit the towing requirement, then eliminate them by safety concerns, creature comforts, etc. If you can't get the towing requirements in a 1/2 ton, you may have to look at a 3/4 ton. You've already eliminated a diesel. Go and see what is out there, enjoy shopping. Put your salesperson to work. State your towing requirements up front, and ask them what they have. Then make them pull the brochures and specs and prove it to you. In the end you will be a very informed consumer, and very familiar with the specs on whatever vehicle you buy. Good luck.
__________________

__________________
LadyWindrider
2012 Ford F250 ext. Cab 4x4
2002 Jeep Wrangler Sahara
2008 Yamaha V-Star 650 Classic

2008 Work and Play 18LT
LadyWindrider is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

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 06:30 AM.