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Old 04-16-2014, 09:34 PM   #1
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Ram 3500 Questions

Ok, I know everyone's probably tired of the "what truck/trailer combo" questions, but maybe you can tolerate one more.

DW and I are very interested in getting into the RV lifestyle, but have no experience towing. So, here's where we are:

- We have 2x giant breed dogs that weigh over 100 lbs each. We'd prefer to haul them in the pickup with us, so the Ram Megacab is a huge draw (pun intended.)
- After reviewing this and countless other RV sites, visiting dealerships, and talking to friends with RVs, we are convinced a 5er is the way to go.
- It seems like the general rule of thumb is to assume only 80% (at most) for the actual tow rating of a vehicle, but I'm not sure if that's for gas engines or if that's the thought for diesels as well. I'm really irritated that nobody other than Toyota has adapted the new SAE J2807 standards. If there was a 1T out there with the rating, that's the one I'd buy.
- I would prefer to avoid a dually (from what I've seen: doesn't do well in snow, and we're in CO. It also wouldn't fit in my garage.) However: in the Ram with the 4.10 axel ratio, Aisen transmission, and dually I can get up to ~28K. If I don't go for the dually, the best I can do is ~17K. Once I take the 20% cut, add 2x passengers and 2x dogs, I have a hard time finding a 5er toy hauler floor plan that works. (We like TH so that the dogs can stay in the garage, the loading ramp porch for in camp, etc. Our big complaint is that most TH floor plans put the television in horrible places for actually viewing.)

So: any thoughts would be greatly appreciated, especially from those who are pulling heavy 5er THs with a Ram 3500 in the Rocky Mt west, dually or SRW.
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Old 04-16-2014, 10:33 PM   #2
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I went with a Ram 3500 6.7 Crewcab 8 ft bed SRW. I have a 180 lb Mastiff. The thing I found with the MegaCab was how the seats folded down and not up. I prefer the seats folding up and Anchor on the floor, not on top of the seat back in the folded down position.

My payload is 4280 lbs. My friend has a 2010 F350 dually with a payload of 4320.

I can tow most anything with that.

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Old 04-16-2014, 10:39 PM   #3
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Thanks for the thoughts. We liked the seats folding down because it gives that much more square footage, and our male dog is claustrophobic (so more space is more better.) We'll probably have to come up with some kind of ramp, but that seems like an easy-ish solution. (Also- I failed to mention that we will occasionally travel with cats too, and it looks like I could squeeze a litter box onto the floor of the mega-cab. Not sure where I'd put one in the crew-cab.

So payload: assuming 25% of the 5er weight is 4280, that gives a total weight of a little over 17K, right?
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Old 04-16-2014, 10:53 PM   #4
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First off, don't fear the dually in the snow. Put it in 4wd and it tracks like a srw. In fact, it seems like I use 4wd more on my srw in the snow than I did with my dually. And that was with an open rear end. Heck, I used to plow snow with a 2wd dually and never had a problem. Short story long, a dually does fine in the snow.
The one thing I won't mess with is tire capacity. My srw only allows for about 2900 lbs of payload (people, things, and trailer) on the rear axle due to the tire limitations. Not many toy haulers will get in under that.
The srw has noticably more sway in the rear with the big trailer on (as in, I didn't notice it with the dually). There is a bunch more wiggle in the wind. It's not the confidence builder that the dually was. I bought the srw about a year before the new camper was a consideration. Had I known it was coming I would have found a dually.
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Old 04-16-2014, 11:23 PM   #5
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I had a F-250 SRW, F-350 SRW, now a new RAM 3500 DRW. For towing I like the RAM best. Two weeks ago I lost the tread on rear trailer tire on I-75. Was able to pull over no problems, no fuss. Last year I felt the trailer pushed the truck around a little, didn't like that so bought two more wheels.
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Old 04-16-2014, 11:30 PM   #6
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The dually not fitting a garage is a pain in the tush. Mine doesn't fit and it sure would be nice if it did!

Otherwise, I love my dually for all things towing.

For capacity, throw out the 80% rule and look at the payload capacity and figure out towing capacity from there. I have a calculator at http://towingplanner.com that you can get ideas from.
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Old 04-17-2014, 09:39 AM   #7
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I have a 06 mega srw and tow a sierra 365saq run between 22k and 23k gcwr and carry wife 3 kids and a dog. The truck does great and the new ones have a lot more power and capacity then mine. You will love the mega cab. One thing to remember when looking at toy haulers is their empty weight isn't usually that much so if you don't intend to load a lot in the garage which it doesn't sound like you intend to do you should be fine with the srw but if you plan on loading it then sorry to say i think a drw is in your future. Good luck with your decision.
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Old 04-17-2014, 01:35 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inspectorgf View Post
One thing to remember when looking at toy haulers is their empty weight isn't usually that much so if you don't intend to load a lot in the garage which it doesn't sound like you intend to do you should be fine with the srw but if you plan on loading it then sorry to say i think a drw is in your future. Good luck with your decision.
Toy haulers typically have (potentially substantially) heavier pin weights than regular 5vers. If the OP's definition of a "heavy 5er TH" is similar to mine, then the rear tires on a SRW would already be maxed out without adding anything else to the truck or trailer.
Loading up the garage would take weight off the pin. So ironically, worst case for a SRW would be an empty garage.
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Old 04-17-2014, 03:08 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by MIFarmer View Post
Toy haulers typically have (potentially substantially) heavier pin weights than regular 5vers. If the OP's definition of a "heavy 5er TH" is similar to mine, then the rear tires on a SRW would already be maxed out without adding anything else to the truck or trailer.
Loading up the garage would take weight off the pin. So ironically, worst case for a SRW would be an empty garage.
You are certainly correct however the 2014 mega 4x4 srw has a payload of 4400 with 68rfe trans and 4250 with aisin and a rawr of 7k so if it is just him wife and 2 dogs and they load camping gear in trailer then they should be fine. I just meant if they are not hauling any heavy toys back there. I certainly will agree a drw is better for towing and I would be in trouble on rawr if i didn't have the dual slide rear bunk house on my trailer but even with as much as my family camps the trailer is only hooked to truck 20% so if you can tow it with the srw and thats what he wants then he should go that route. However if he if going to have the trailer hooked to the truck 50% or more I would vote drw
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Old 04-17-2014, 04:56 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by ependydad View Post
The dually not fitting a garage is a pain in the tush. Mine doesn't fit and it sure would be nice if it did!
Here's the solution for the garage.



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