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Old 02-22-2014, 10:10 PM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 1,327
Newbie needs a hand from G'town 280DS owners

Hi all...Cam's the name for short and I am not YET a G'town 280DS owner but we're pretty much sold on the model after visiting the Tampa show last month and seeing about everything in Class A under 30 ft. ...Hoping to become a more regular "member/owner" in the near future. We plan to travel and see the country 3-4 months a year from our mid atlantic base.

I'm hoping some 280DS owners (any year) can help with 3 things I need to make some other decisions. Let me list those first:
1. Rear Axle carrying capacity. (GAWR) Strangely, FR does not list it on any of its' spec sheets and dealer couldn't tell me either since he doesn't have any on the lot.
2. Distance in inches between the rear axle hub and the end of the coach...within a couple of inches is fine.
3. And most important...Does the F53 chassis extend almost to the rear bumper OR is there a welded on extension from the end of the chassis to the rear of the coach?

If the answer to #3 is "there's a welded on piece" then you don't need to bother with #1 & 2. answer the question...I'm trying to see if I can upgrade the hitch TONGUE weight carrying capacity from the stock 500 lbs. to about 700 lbs with a different hitch and mount and possibly air bag assist for the rear springs.
The goal is to be able to carry a pair of highway capable scooters on a hitch mounted rack for the both of us instead of a toad.
#3 is a deal breaker... limited to 500 lbs. if this is the case. #1 & 2 are the missing pieces of info I will need for the calculation if #3 is OK.

The nearest 280DS to me at present is about 800 miles away! So I'm turning to you owners here and asking for some much needed info.
Thanks in advance and I hope to be able to return the favor for others here in the near future.

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Old 02-22-2014, 10:49 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Desert SW - Arizona
Posts: 5,870
Welcome Cam's to the
If you have specific questions about your Georgetown you can do it in the specific model forum for Georgetown motorhomes.
Here is the Georgetown link to it.
Georgetown - Forest River Forums

I believe a 280DS is on a 178" Ford F-53 wheelbase chassis.
Please take a look at page 2 of the attached 2012 Ford F-53 specs and it will give you and idea of the bare chassis. If you compare it to the label on the wall behind the drivers seat you can compare and get an idea of your rear axle weight. The best way if you really need to find a number is to take it to a CAT scale.
This document will give a lot of good information.
See you in the Georgetown forum area.

Attached Files
File Type: pdf 2012_F53_F59_v1.2.pdf (4.66 MB, 79 views)
2012 Georgetown XL - 378TS 49,000 miles
(2013 - 98 days) (2014 - 117 days) (2015 - 67 days) (2016 - 115 days)
USAF Retired - MSgt

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280, newbie

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