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Old 11-30-2009, 10:47 PM   #1
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I am a newbie with a 50 mile trip on the Calif. coast dry camping and a trip to Vegas staying at Sam's Town. So far everything has gone according to the book. (I know there is no book) Well, I did find a tree that jumped out and scratched me on the beach trip.

We purchased a 2009 Ford F250 diesel and a Cardinal 3625RT XL. The truck seems to handle the load very well, but it does drop 2 or 3 inches with the load. Is this normal? One of the service people at the dealer says I should consider air bags. I am new and don't know if I am being up-sold or need extra help with the weight?


Big Bird

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Old 11-30-2009, 11:25 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum! Real nice trailer!

I checked the specs on Forest River's site...this trailer is listed as 2515lbs dry pin weight. Depending how much you loaded in the trailer and where, the actual pin weight might be closer to 3000lbs. That's a lot of weight for your may be close or even over the rear axle rating. I'm not sure what the GCWR rating is for your F250 (20,000?)...with the trailer's dry weight of 12,295 and GVWR of 16,195lbs you may also be over that. You should get your set-up scaled to see where you are weight-wise.

Hopefully our 5th wheel owners will provide more info. If the rear suspension is dropping 3 inches, you may be onto the bump stops on rough pavement. The air bags will help that situation.



Nights camped in 2013 - 55, 2014 - 105, 2015 - 63
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Old 12-01-2009, 06:14 AM   #3
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Yes I would get the air bags to level the truck out.
3500 Ram 5.9l diesel
08 35 RLT Cardinal
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Old 12-02-2009, 04:24 AM   #4
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Towed a 29'Cedar Creek- max weight 13000 pounds with a short bed 2000 F250 for 8 years. Never had an issue with the weight, but I did put air bags on it. It really helps the ride and levels the truck out. Just remember they don't increase your tow capacity, all they do is level the truck out. Used to tow with 35-40 pounds of air in each side.

You can also go to and get your actual tow ratings. Make sure you look under fifth wheel towing, and you'll need to know what gears you have.
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Old 12-02-2009, 08:03 AM   #5
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Dave's real close to it. I'd bet you're real close to 3,000 pin weight. He's also right about getting it weighed. You really should weigh it loaded and ready to camp.

The best info I could find on the Ford site says that if you have an F-250 4X4 you payload capacity ranges from 2550 to 2980 depending on your configuration. Your door pillar sticker should have it listed.

Air bags will help the sag but just be aware of how close to the limits you are.
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Old 12-02-2009, 10:43 AM   #6
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Thanks all I appreciate the comments. I will go to a scale. I am also going to contact Ford and see what they have to say. The dealer of course said no problem during the sale!

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