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Old 06-21-2015, 03:44 PM   #1
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Trying to make sense of towing limits

but I must be dense because I am just not getting it and I remain

What in the world is a payload? I googled it and it's talking about aircraft carriers

I'm not sure if it matters- because we already have our set-up and it seems to tow fine....but now I'm wondering if we are accidentally exceeding some limit. Help please?

We have a 1997 Ford F-150 4X2 v8. And a 2015 Salem Cruise Lite 261BHXL with a dry weight of 4318 (if I remember correctly).

How in the world would I discover my payload?
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Old 06-21-2015, 03:59 PM   #2
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You will learn not to say too much on here about weight, the weight Police will jump into action and it won't be pretty!

Stuff you add to or place into your truck (or tow vehicle or TV) is payload... If you owned an aircraft carrier same, same. You can put stuff into the bed or the passenger compartment. So, payload capacity is the weight of all the stuff you want to carry in total; before you bring down the weight police upon yourself. Don't ask me how they, but they just do.

Now, the TV has an advertised weight which, is typically calculated as the truck as it left the factory plus a half tank of fuel and a 150# driver. So, if you add a 300# bumper with a winch, that takes away from the other stuff you can load.

Then there are other limits such as GVW or GVWR or RAW, etc. Each axle has a weight limit, what it can tow has a maximum rating and on top of all that there is a TV / TT combined weight limit. To determine if you are over a weight limit you have to weigh it, loaded like you are heading off the the lake, the mountains, the dunes or grandma's house where ever your off to.
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Old 06-21-2015, 04:02 PM   #3
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Your payload is what you can carry in the bed of your truck and inside it, and the tongue weight.

Since you have a pull behind, what you need to be concerned with is tongue weight of the trailer and the over all weight of the trailer.
From my experience, add 1000 pounds to the dry weight because you have probably already got at least that much in it.

With all that said, look in your owners manual and see what your max towing is. Start there.
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Old 06-21-2015, 04:41 PM   #4
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If you have the 4.6 your max tow would be around 7200. With the 5.4 it would be around 8200. That's assuming you have a standard styleside. If you have the supercab you'll knock off around 300lbs. Payload capacity is right around 2000lbs.. 1850-2150 depending on standard or supercab.

If your Salem is 4300 dry, and giving a very generous cargo allowance of say.. 2000lbs, then you're still well within your max capacities. You won't win any uphill races, but you're good to go with a nice safely margin.
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Old 06-21-2015, 05:01 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yarome View Post
If you have the 4.6 your max tow would be around 7200. With the 5.4 it would be around 8200. That's assuming you have a standard styleside. If you have the supercab you'll knock off around 300lbs. Payload capacity is right around 2000lbs.. 1850-2150 depending on standard or supercab.

If your Salem is 4300 dry, and giving a very generous cargo allowance of say.. 2000lbs, then you're still well within your max capacities. You won't win any uphill races, but you're good to go with a nice safely margin.
Okay, thanks. We have the Supercab style, I guess. We have three doors. Ours is the 5.4. So we're good then- there's nothing in the bed and all that's in Vera is 2 pillows, a sheet, blanket, and three board games That should be less than 2,000 pounds!
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Old 06-21-2015, 05:03 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markb5900 View Post
Your payload is what you can carry in the bed of your truck and inside it, and the tongue weight.

Since you have a pull behind, what you need to be concerned with is tongue weight of the trailer and the over all weight of the trailer.
From my experience, add 1000 pounds to the dry weight because you have probably already got at least that much in it.

With all that said, look in your owners manual and see what your max towing is. Start there.
We don't have an owner's manual! We bought it used and it didn't have one. I could order one off of Ebay but I don't know how accurate that would be.
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Old 06-21-2015, 05:18 PM   #7
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OK; here goes the weight police can jump all over me and my comments.
I do not concern myself at all with PAYLOAD capacity when I tow my 5er with my truck. What does concern me is the GCWR of the truck and the axle weights of my truck and trailer weights. Per the Ram Body Builders PDF file payload and maximum towing weights are mutually excusive.


I do scale all of my 5er's with the tow vehicle attached and with my new 5er I am at the GCRW of the truck; which to me is OK. Since I set my truck up for towing a 5er that I have chosen to tow.
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Old 06-21-2015, 05:30 PM   #8
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Sorry, I only read what is payload, didn't see how can I find mine. I found the information below, for you. To be sure, you need to know actual tongue weight and trailer weight.

Trailer towing table (1997 F-150 4x2 automatic transmission)
Engine,Rear axle ratio,Maximum GCWR kg (lb),Maximum trailer weight kg (lb), Maximum frontal area of trailer m2(ft2):

Regular Cab F-150
4.2L 3.08 4,077 (9,000) 2,177 (4,800) 5.52 (60)
4.2L 3.55 4,530 (10,000) 2,582 (5,800) 5.52 (60)
4.6L 3.08 4,530 (10,000) 2,582 (5,700) 5.52 (60)
4.6L 3.55 5,209 (11,500) 3,261 (7,200) 5.52 (60)
5.4L 3.08 4,983 (11,000) 2,948 (6,500) 5.52 (60)
5.4L 3.55 5,753 (12,700) 3,268 (8,000) 5.52 (60)
SuperCab F-150
4.2L 3.08 4,077 (9,000) 2,086 (4,600) 5.52 (60)
4.2L 3.08 4,530 (10,000) 2,540 (5,600) 5.52 (60)
4.6L 3.55 4,530 (10,000) 2,491 (5,500) 5.52 (60)
4.6L 3.55 5,209 (11,500) 3,171 (7,000) 5.52 (60)
5.4L 3.08 4,983 (11,000) 2,857 (6,300) 5.52 (60)
5.4L 3.55 5,753 (12,700) 3,628 (8,000) 5.52 (60)
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Old 06-21-2015, 05:31 PM   #9
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Hang on.. According to the spec sheet it says GVWR is 5550 and GCWR is 7800. Curb weights 3850. That can't be right can it?? That would only allow for 3800lbs for cargo, hitch, and trailer.

And motortrend is saying gross trailer weight (braked) at only 1900.

Gonna have to look a little deeper I guess. That doesn't seem right at all. Anyone??
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Old 06-21-2015, 05:45 PM   #10
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Once upon a time I was towing with a 1997 F150 4x4 supercab with the 4.6l and my max tow was 6600, so I would stick with the first figures. 7900 makes a heck of a lot more sense for your rig than what motortrend and others are listing. Of course.. they might just be listing that for bumper pull capacities.

You're good! I would bet your life on it!

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