Originally Posted by SIBELL
we made the trek to deadwood sd from MPLS mn for a long weekend, brought the motorcycle with and I wish I had a bigger truck. All towed welll and had no issues at all, but I think a diesel would have made a world of difference. I got on the average 7.9 mpg doing 72 mph
I had this same thing going on. I had a smaller travel trailer than I do now. I believe it was 26' weighed roughly 6,000 loaded. I towed it with a 2010 Ram 1500 big horn! I absolutely loved the truck, didn't seem to have any issues pulling it but the fuel mileage for a lack of better terms sucked. I had been wanting a diesel for a good while, for my lifestyle it was a good fit. I finally talked the wife into looking at the one we have now, a 2006 Ram 2500 cummins. She wasn't fond of going backwards from the 2010 to a 2006 but the power difference is night and day. As you stated I was getting roughly 8 mpg pulling with the hemi. Once we upgraded we had a trip from NE to CO which was about 800 one way for us and I averaged 12mpg with the same camper.
I then stepped up to our current camper, significantly larger and am getting 10-11 on shorter trips. Haven't pulled it too far as of yet to see what longer hauls will get.
At the same time you have to factor in that general maintenance on a diesel is going to be higher, fuel is higher, they are nosier, rougher riding AND A LOT MORE FUN TO DRIVE.... It wont necessarily be cheaper when you factor those things in to the savings in fuel economy on your trips, but I didn't justify mine via money savings. I justified it by it being more than enough for the trailer we have or may buy in the future. I feel it is safer having the extra weight of the tow vehicle and having the larger coolers on the motor and trans during long steep grade climbs in 100* temps really pay off.... Long story short, I love my diesel and wouldn't part with it unless I won a new one.
Regardless you need to get a weight distribution and sway control hitch pronto buddy! Spend a fair amount and get a good one. Any of the big names will be fine, Reese, Blue OX, equalizer.
Also, when sizing for the hitch. You need to factor what the tongue weight of the trailer will be at max load, as well as what you think you may have for weight in the bed of the truck behind the axle. IE if you have 1000 lbs tongue on the camper and say a 100 lbs cooler in the back of the truck close to the gate order at least an 1100 LBS set up.