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Old 09-01-2014, 12:11 PM   #1
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Upgrading pull vehicle

We've a Rockwood Mini Lite 2304 and are upgrading our pulling vehicle; our aim is to get a vehicle worthy of taking us to Alaska and I'm looking for recommendations and words of wisdom.


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Old 09-01-2014, 12:24 PM   #2
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Can you help us a bit with the weights of your unit and price range?


2015 HW296
2006 HW256 (previous pup)
2013 Chevy Tahoe
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Old 09-01-2014, 12:52 PM   #3
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The trailer weighs 3500 with a tongue weight of 550. We'd like to spend less than $20K and have a vehicle with under 100K miles. A 3/4 ton is preferred, diesel or gas OK. Of course, we're flexible.
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Old 09-01-2014, 02:28 PM   #4
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I have had good luck with an early (2001 or earlier) Dodge 2500 with a Cummins.

If you can find one with a tow package it is better - Engines good for at least 350,000 miles - If it has close to 150,000 figure a trans rebuild - and ball joints.

Also have the lift pump pressure checked. I tow a 9000lb 5th wheel and get about 12 MPG - 20MPG empty.

With luck you can find one in the $8000-$10,000 range and have a few bucks left over for improvements.
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Old 09-01-2014, 02:50 PM   #5
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You should have no problem meeting your requirements. Getting a diesel has it's advantages, but for the same money you can get a much newer/lower mileage gas powered truck. You are not even remotely close to needing the extra power. When I bought my 04' GMC diesel in 07', it was a $6000 upgrade (all else being equal). Adding a diesel to a new truck now means an extra $8-9000, I expect the used market to be similar.
'04 GMC Sierra 2500HD, CCSB, D/A, MaxBrake, B&W Companion, Retrax Pro, AR Power Steps
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Old 09-02-2014, 08:21 AM   #6
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Personally I really don't see the need for a 3/4 ton for pulling that load. My F150 would tow that like it wasn't even back there! Have you looked into the 2011 F150's or newer? I have the ecoboost but you could also get the 5.0L that would work for you as well. Unless you really have a need for a bigger truck...why get one? A F150 with a tow package and 3.31 gearing would tow that great and also get good gas milage when not towing.

There's my opinion!
2013 F150 Platinum EGOboost, 3.73 max tow
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Old 09-02-2014, 08:33 AM   #7
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I tow a 2306 Mini Lite, so the specs are very close. I use a 2012 F150, 5.0, 3.55 rear end and find that this is plenty of truck for a smaller/lighter trailer. It's a nice balance between having plenty of power and gas mileage, while both towing and daily driving.
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:42 PM   #8
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We have a 2304 and went to AK Summer of 2013. Towed it with a 2010Honda Ridgeline RTL. No problems and covered 10,000 miles averaging 11.4 MPG. The Honda is a great truck, very comfortable and fun to drive. The truck is only pushed to its limits on the very steepest of hills. Other than that it performed very well. We plan another trip to AK in 2015. We did upgrade to a 2014 GMC Sierra 5.3 with tow package as we hope to do a little more back country travelling and felt the additional torque would be an asset.
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Old 09-07-2014, 09:09 PM   #9
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I tow a Micro Lite 23LB (similar specs) with a 2014 Ram 1500 Ecodiesel (3.0 L v-6 turbo diesel) More money than you want to spend but mileage while towing is fairly good (14 - 16 range) and mileage while not towing is great for a pick-up (27-29 highway.)
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Old 09-07-2014, 09:23 PM   #10
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F150 Supercrew is a great choice. We have towed our 829FKSS Flagstaff about 11000 miles with no issues. Our 2008 had the 5.4, our 2011 had the 5.0 and the 2014 has a 3.5 eco., all with 3.73 tow package and all Crewcabs. All three would tow your TT without an issue. The 5.0 and 3.56 eco are very close in performance. While a littlre less powerful, the 5.4 would be adequate for your needs.

These individuals who automatically think you need a diesel to tow are not playing with a full deck. Higher maintenance costs, acquisition costs and cost of repair are far greater. Diesels have their benefits if you are towing a big unit but they are not necessarily what you need.

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