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Old 10-14-2019, 09:30 AM   #1
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Tow Vehicle for a 2018 Rockwood Signature Ultra 8329SS

Hi,
My wife and I are looking at a 2019 Rockwood 8329SS. We love the trailer and price but unfortunately have to also purchase a tow vehicle. I understand the trailer is about 8,100 pounds dry plus cargo (1,000-1,500) puts us just shy of 10,000 pounds. I would prefer a ford but are there any F150 models that would be adequate to tow this?
Thanks!
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Old 10-14-2019, 09:33 AM   #2
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welcome to the forum its a great place to get your question answered. 1/2 ton? at a weight of 10K myself I would look at any of the big three trucks. Most folks move up in size of rig after some time and a 3/4 would go well
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Old 10-14-2019, 09:37 AM   #3
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I'd be looking in the 3/4 ton range. Gas or Diesel. They say these 1/2 tons will tow it, but I pulled a 7k loaded Jayco for years with a 150 and 1500 and always wished I had more truck than those 1/2 ton.
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Old 10-14-2019, 09:40 AM   #4
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Tow Vehicle for an 2018 Rockwood Signature Ultra 8329SS

Ignore dry weight and look at the trailer GVWR. Thatís a better number when trying to match up a tow vehicle.

Then take 15% of the GVWR as potential hitch weight.

Then add the weight of yourself, your wife, and any gear you plan on having in the truck to the potential hitch weight. This is the approximate payload capacity that youíll need.

Tow capacity is only part of the picture, with a 1/2 ton truck the issue is also going to be one of payload.

That trailer has a GVWR of 11,082LB and a potential hitch weight of over 1,600LB. Adding another 700-1000LB for people and gear and your payload requirements could be in the 2,300-2,600LB area. This is definitely 3/4- or 1-ton truck territory, I wouldnít attempt it with a 1/2-ton truck.

When looking at tow vehicles, open the driverís door and look at the payload sticker. It will tell you the payload capacity for that specific truck as it left the factory. If itís not at least 2,300-2,600LB or more then I wouldnít consider it as being sufficient.

Thatís a long and heavy trailer youíre looking at, donít skimp on the truck.
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Old 10-14-2019, 10:00 AM   #5
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I think you're looking at a 3/4 ton or higher truck. Bigger brakes, stronger suspension, etc.

As others have said, gas or Diesel doesn't matter.

The Diesel will do better with fuel mileage, higher upfront costs though. Maintenance is different on a Diesel truck. More expensive, but done less often. For example, my 6.0 Powerstroke takes 15qt of oil and a $20 oil filter but can go 9000 miles (or more) on an oil change.

A gasser is probably going to be in the single digits when towing and range will be more limited due to fuel economy.

Some will argue that modern emissions standards have made modern diesels unreliable. I can agree with that statement. However, if you know what you're getting into and can do some of the maintenance yourself, that'll go a long way. Maintenance is key. Don't abuse a Diesel or it'll abuse your pocketbook.
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Old 10-14-2019, 10:47 AM   #6
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IMO A Signature Ultralite is in the 2500 size truck to really be comfortable. Ultralite at 34' length (mine) is borderline 1500. Trailer length should also be used when deciding what TV. I like a fairly loaded in creature comforts vehicle, crew cab, 4x4. The more loaded the vehicle usually the less towing weight. I'm a GMC guy but let's look at a Ford. A 3.5 turbo 4x4 short bed Crew cab specs out at 10,700 to 12,700 (max tow) lbs. A F250 6.7 Powerstroke is 15,000 lbs. A F150 Lariat with max tow will be within $10,000 or less of a F250 Lariat. I guarantee that the F250 pulling that Signature Ultralight will be much more comfortable than a F150. If the F150 is running mid-grade fuel to tow with the diesel will cost less in fuel costs towing. The 3.5 turbo's 375HP/ 470 ft-lb torque is no match for the Powerstroke's 450HP/ 955 ft-lbs.
I just swapped off a 5.3 GMC 1500 for a Denalli 2500 Duramax.
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Old 10-14-2019, 12:00 PM   #7
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I would definitely be looking at a 3/4 ton truck for a trailer that size and weight. The new 2020 Chevy/GMC 2500 trucks, with their advanced trailering system, will make your towing experience so much more pleasant. Get a half ton and you'll most likely be white-knuckling it.
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Old 10-14-2019, 12:28 PM   #8
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I had an 8312SS which was similar "dry weights". we towed with a 17 3/4 Ram Crew Cab with the cummins. i still needed to add airbags to get a good towing experience with the blue ox WDH.

looks liek the unit you want you should strongly consider a 3/4 ton - i liked my dodge, but the 3/4 ton doesn't have leafs springs - so keep that in mind.
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Old 10-14-2019, 12:57 PM   #9
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Boy, it seems every time I chime in on a topic in this forum someone gets a bee up their bonnet and I get some serious grief. But I'll try once again as this is a topic about which I have a ton of first-hand experience (see what I just did there?)

We've been full-timing in a 30' Rockwood Ultralight fifth wheel. The factory says 32' but measured it is 30'. Weighs 7800 dry and a tad over 9,000 lbs fully loaded. We tow with a 2014 F150 Ecoboost with the heavy duty tow package. We now have 35,000 miles ON THE FIFTH WHEEL and have towed it everywhere. From Florida to Washington state, from Southern California to Nova Scotia.

It has been a marvelous truck. We don't have a second vehicle and this is our home - everything we have is in the fifth wheel. Two minor problems the whole time, both covered under warranty. That's it. I change the oil every 5,000 - 7,000 miles depending on our traveling, and that's it. I do the tranny flush every 75,000 and we now have 130,000 on the truck. We wanted a truck that would get good gas mileage when we weren't towing because as avid hikers and sightseers we knew we would be driving all over God's creation.

With me so far?

Fast forward to today. When we bought our F150 it was capable of towing 11,200 lbs with the HD package. Since then, Ford has cut the weight by going to an aluminum bed, and they now have a 10 speed tranny vs my 6 speed. Their newest version of the F150 with the V6 Ecoboost (it MUST be the 3.5, NOT the new 2.7) will tow over 13,000 lbs. Which would work great with your trailer, IMHO.

So, how well does it tow? And you'll get all sorts of folks screaming about braking, handling, etc. Balderdash. We've had close calls, 8% grades for several miles, towed up the Rockies, up the Appalachains, up the Cascades, and passed many a motorhome without breaking a sweat. Of course, going up means you have to come down. Never had a concern with braking. The engine provides minimal breaking help in 4th gear, but help is help and it makes a difference going downhill.

The challenge is to find a truck outfitted with the 3.5 Ecoboost, super crew cab (the ONLY one to get) and the HD tow package. But it is out there, I promise you - I just saw an ad last week from Ford promoting this configuration.

Okay, what about gas mileage?

Towing, we've averaged 10.4 MPG, sometimes dipping down to 10.2 For awhile I was only getting 9 mpg but then discovered I had a bum power throttle control. When that got replaced my mileage went right back to 10.2 - 10.4. Wind will diminish that by a mile per gallon.

And what about town? Well, combined city/highway we get about 18. highway travel without going 80 comes in at 21 - 22. When we were in Washington state, I did a day's scenic drive around the perimeter of Olympic National Park, about a three hour drive averaging between 45 and 50 mph and got 26 mpg. The newer truck, with that 10 speed tranny, will squeeze another mile or two or three better than what we get.

Last point: I only use synthetic blend and full synthetic in my oil change. I balance and rotate my tires every 5,000 - 10,000 miles so I get the max out of my tires. Current tires about to be changed at 67,000 miles on them. I change my air filter religiously, and keep my truck and my fiver waxed/polished religiously twice a year. And when I tow, I never get above 65, I aim to keep it between 60 and 65 depending on traffic. Slower driving is safer driving - we've avoided a couple of close calls because of the slower driving speed.

And that's my story, and I am sticking to it.
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Old 10-14-2019, 02:54 PM   #10
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Boy, it seems every time I chime in on a topic in this forum someone gets a bee up their bonnet and I get some serious grief. But I'll try once again as this is a topic about which I have a ton of first-hand experience (see what I just did there?)....
Bee in bonnet...


Alex78526,

Tow rating is one thing, payload is another and then you have a maxium weight for what can be placed on the receiver of your truck. The trailer you're looking at has a dry hitch weight of 1082...base weight...standard options. Add a battery and you're 1150 on the tongue weight. Add a WDH and you are at 1250. The last time I looked at Ford half tons (2018) the receiver on the truck was rated at 1320 max. By the time you put socks in the front compartment of that trailer you will be over weight.

Is it possible to get a 1/2 ton that will just barely be within ratings to tow this trailer empty? Yes, empty on paper, but anyone thinking you will get all the weights below the maximum ratings ready to camp should check their meds asap.

This trailer needs a 3/4 ton minimum.

Good luck with your quest.
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Old 10-14-2019, 03:17 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Alex78526 View Post
Hi,
My wife and I are looking at a 2019 Rockwood 8329SS. We love the trailer and price but unfortunately have to also purchase a tow vehicle. I understand the trailer is about 8,100 pounds dry plus cargo (1,000-1,500) puts us just shy of 10,000 pounds. I would prefer a ford but are there any F150 models that would be adequate to tow this?
Thanks!
If Ford still offers the F-150 with the heavy duty PAYLOAD option (not just heavy duty TOWING package), then it could be OK since that option gives you a payload at the low end of 3/4 tons. But really, a F-250 gasser would be ideal for that TT. If you regularly tow in mountainous areas go with a F-350 SRW with the Diesel engine.
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Old 10-14-2019, 03:22 PM   #12
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If Ford still offers the F-150 with the heavy duty PAYLOAD option (not just heavy duty TOWING package), then it could be OK since that option gives you a payload at the low end of 3/4 tons. But really, a F-250 gasser would be ideal for that TT. If you regularly tow in mountainous areas go with a F-350 SRW with the Diesel engine.
The HDPP does nothing to increase the maximum rating of 1320lbs on the ball as set by Ford in 2018.

There are three (3) very important ratings. 1. Maximum tow rating. 2. Payload. 3 The maximum weight the receiver can carry (tongue weight).
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Old 10-14-2019, 03:49 PM   #13
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The HDPP does nothing to increase the maximum rating of 1320lbs on the ball as set by Ford in 2018.

There are three (3) very important ratings. 1. Maximum tow rating. 2. Payload. 3 The maximum weight the receiver can carry (tongue weight).
THIS^^^^^^^
The 1320lbs receiver limit is well known on F150 forums.
It's the max weight on the receiver, WITH a WDH.
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Old 10-14-2019, 03:50 PM   #14
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The HDPP does nothing to increase the maximum rating of 1320lbs on the ball as set by Ford in 2018.

There are three (3) very important ratings. 1. Maximum tow rating. 2. Payload. 3 The maximum weight the receiver can carry (tongue weight).
Good point. Thanks. The OP will have to research the weight rating of a receiver on a F-150 with the HDPP if they want to seriously consider that option.

That is a popular TT so someone here should be able to provide their real world tongue weight.
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Old 10-14-2019, 04:36 PM   #15
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Make sure to get the right tow vehicle

I own a 2016 Rockwood 8329ss. I use a Husky Centerline Weight Distribution and Anti Sway Hitch. I use a 2008 Chevy Silverado 2500HD 4x4 for towing the camper.

To preface this I started towing this trailer with a beefed up Silverado 1500. White knuckle towing. Dumped the 1500 and started using my 2500HD 4x4. No sway - great on the highway- transfer trucks do not bounce you around plus with the 3/4 ton suspension and brakes you will have no problems. Especially with all the "necessary crap" that the wife must have on our travels.

I do not feel that I would feel safe towing my rig with a 1/2 ton vehicle
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Old 10-14-2019, 04:59 PM   #16
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Cat Scale worksheet for 3/4 ton GMC, SUL 8329SS & ProPride 1400 hitch

We just completed a short trip with our rig and stopped at a Cat Scale on the way. We just installed a ProPride PP3 1400 lb hitch and are trying to dial in the WD settings. I have tried to attach a PDF with the Cat Scale readings and also a JPEG of the spreadsheet too. IMO the Rockwood SUL 8329SS has all of its significant storage forward of the wheels so the tongue weight is pretty high. The Propride hitch has improved our towing 200% except for our return trip during high winds which was still a nightmare. I just kept telling myself that without the PP3 hitch it would have been so much worse. I love the layout but it definitely needs a bigger truck than a 1/2 ton.

Tongue weight 1460 LBS (about 150lbs of that is the PP3 hitch)
15.7% tongue wt
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Old 10-14-2019, 05:45 PM   #17
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My 9000# Rockwood 8280WS Ultralite (30') 5er lifted the rear of my Chevy 2500 HD Crew 4x4 off the pavement on a bridge approach near Seattle once. Glad I wasn't driving a 1500.

I found a 2500 was only a couple hundred dollar more than a 1500 and had more payload and tow capability without payload or tow upgrades. And probably rides better than a 1500 with those upgrades. And has more room.

When Ford first went to aluminum, they saved 700# but the payload only went up 200#. That means they saved weight in the frame and such. I like having a heavier truck that can't be so easily moved around by trailer whether it's heaves in the road or passing semi trucks.
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Old 10-14-2019, 06:02 PM   #18
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The Rockwood 8329SS has a dry weight of 8,500 lbs. Add 1,300 lbs of various options and gear. So, it's a 9,800 lb, 35' trailer.

You'll put about 1,250 lbs on the hitch. I'll assume that the WDH, you, your wife, gear, wood in the bed, and all other things will be around 750 lbs total. That's a 2,000 lb total.

So, an F-150 with the 3.5 EB and the HDPP package should give you a vehicle that can tow this trailer and be within all specifications and ratings. So, there's your theoretical answer: yes, an F-150 can handle this load as long as it's properly equipped with engine and HDPP.

As others have suggested, it's a better fit for an HD truck. 3/4 or 1 ton will be a better match, but it's not mandatory.

Good luck.
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Old 10-14-2019, 06:15 PM   #19
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Poor OP, he just bought a new $30,000 TT and now forced to buy a new $70,000 pickup.
He seems to have left the discussion.
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Old 10-14-2019, 06:17 PM   #20
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Poor OP, he just bought a new $30,000 TT and now forced to buy a new $70,000 pickup.
He seems to have left the discussion.
Well, they did ask.
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