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Old 04-10-2019, 11:48 AM   #1
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Towing with Ram 1500

We are currently looking for a new tow vehicle and on a limited budget. Here in western Massachusetts it is hard to find a 3/4 ton that isn't rotting out or been abused as a plow truck.

I came across a 2011 Ram 1500 quad cab Laramie with 3.55 gears 20 inch wheels, our current trailer is 4000lbs dry and 22 feet so I feel confident this would be an improvement over the Durango we currently tow with.

My question is we are looking at a Salem cruise lite 263bhxl with the sticker weight just under 6000lbs dry. With this being a 32 foot trailer would towing with the half ton be difficult? Best information I found is max trailer weight 8350lbs but I know the length of the trailer can make a difference.
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Old 04-10-2019, 12:20 PM   #2
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Look out west for a used 3/4-ton truck for sale in great shape...

They are all over the place!
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Old 04-10-2019, 12:28 PM   #3
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Look out west for a used 3/4-ton truck for sale in great shape...

They are all over the place!
yea if you want a truck with 180,000 miles or more . been looking for quite sometime unless you pay almost retail for a used low mileage truck almost better buying new at least out west . plus you have to watch out for all the traded in oil rig trucks that get beat to heck
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Old 04-10-2019, 12:30 PM   #4
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That is probably ball to bumper the floorplan is likely 28'. 6k dry normally turns into 7k camp ready which would warrant a WDH with built in sway control. And if using a half ton a trip to the scales to assure a stable setup.

If you get a used Ram 1500 I would look for a MY 13 so as to find the dramatically better 8 speed transmission. You might also prefer the 3.92 gear.

I have had the best luck with Andersen, Husky Centerline, and Blue Ox sway pro weight distribution hitches. Chinese steel off brand hitches and harsh riding noisy square springs bars not so much. Make memories family camping.
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The answer to what can my 1/2 ton tow; Generically whatever TT has a GVWR less than TVís max tow rating. Specifically is found on CAT scale via weight distribution with TV TT & WDH. Best motor & gearing all 5 Mfgs within specs IE safe & stable normally to 8k but passengers & bedload reduce this. RAM 1500 ED max tow 9,200, max axle ratings 3,900, max 09-18 CVWR 15,950, axle weights me & gear 3,240 steer 2,560 drive
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Old 04-10-2019, 01:09 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by daybreak View Post

I came across a 2011 Ram 1500 quad cab Laramie with 3.55 gears 20 inch wheels, our current trailer is 4000lbs dry and 22 feet so I feel confident this would be an improvement over the Durango we currently tow with.
You need to look at the truck's payload capacity sticker. Payload capacity is more important than towing capacity since nearly all vehicles will run out of payload capacity WAY before reaching max towing capacity.
I wouldn't be surprised if that Ram had the same or lower payload capacity than your Durango.
You also didn't mention engine size or if it has the factory tow package.
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Old 04-10-2019, 01:30 PM   #6
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You need to look at the truck's payload capacity sticker. Payload capacity is more important than towing capacity since nearly all vehicles will run out of payload capacity WAY before reaching max towing capacity.
I wouldn't be surprised if that Ram had the same or lower payload capacity than your Durango.
You also didn't mention engine size or if it has the factory tow package.
Agreed, OP mentioned Laramie and 20" wheels, none of which are important to tow capability.
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Old 04-10-2019, 01:38 PM   #7
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I have a 2014 Ram 1500 Crew can. I use an E4 Equalizer hitch. My trailer is a 2019 Wildwood 30KQBSS. 32 feet total length. Dry weight is 6900. Pulls just fine. I even have 35Ē tires. Would do even better with stock 20ís...lol
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Old 04-10-2019, 01:39 PM   #8
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I also have a Airlift 1000 setup in the rear as well
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Old 04-10-2019, 03:48 PM   #9
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Agreed, OP mentioned Laramie and 20" wheels, none of which are important to tow capability.
Ok let me start by saying yes it is relevant if you look at the charts you will see that the 2011 Quad Cab Laramie 1. they only come with the 5.7 L Hemi, 2. the difference between the 17" and 20" wheels is small but makes a difference.

The GVWR 6,700 Payload 1,570, GCWR 14,000 with a recommended max trailer weight of 8,350 My questions was not about tow capacity as I can see a 6000lb dry weight is fine my question was about towing a 32' trailer with a half ton.

As for the Durango it has 3.21 gears with a 4.7 L V8, max tow capacity of 6,000 lbs. I can't recall the payload off the top of my head but anytime we go away for more than a weekend we are for sure over it.

VernDiesel thank you very much I didn't think of the length as being less for just the floor plan which is where the concern is. We use a WDH now and would get a bigger one for the new trailer.
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Old 04-10-2019, 04:15 PM   #10
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You can pull it of course. But the larger unit will probably be about maxed for the 3.55s.
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Old 04-11-2019, 03:41 PM   #11
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we have an F150 3.73 maxtow eco and it tows our 829FKSS Flagstaff with no issues. Would also recommend E rated 10 ply rubber. Our trailer is 32ft and that is no problem. I do have the 1200lb bars.
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Old 04-12-2019, 03:40 AM   #12
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When the conversation turns into "the dry weight is ..." I start checking out. This has been covered in just about every thread here.

Dry weights are trash. Stop using them. They're not helpful. Relying on them will only increase the probability that you'll make a bad decision about what you can tow. Real weight will be at least 1,000 lbs higher than dry and GVWR of the trailer is almost always a much better place to focus.

1/2 ton "can I tow it?" discussions need to start with payload, not tow capacity. Find the payload rating on your door jamb sticker. 1/2 ton and payload are inextricably linked. Can't talk about 1/2 ton without payload.

Only after you tackle those two things (real weight, payload), can you move into lengths, weight distribution, axles, and myriad other considerations. But, starting with those other considerations, starting with bogus dry weights, and starting without the key truck weight rating (payload) will only help to confuse the issue and increase potential to make a poor decision.

Good luck.
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Old 04-12-2019, 07:47 AM   #13
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I have a different opinion of dry weight. When you are shopping for towable RVs, you don't know exactly how much that rig will weigh when actually in use. You only have an estimated range, which is between posted dry weight and dry weight plus load capacity. So dry weight is useful In that initial look at a towable In deciding if it is within the towing range of your TV. In each of my previous towables, the posted dry weight was fairly accurate. We have a scale on the farm, so weighing is not a big deal.
After owning lots of RVs, I know how much all the crap I carry adds to the dry weight. What is a guess, is how pin (hitch) weight will be affected by how each RV carries the load. But at least dry weight gives you a place to start when looking at new RVs.
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Old 04-12-2019, 08:15 AM   #14
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I have a different opinion of dry weight. When you are shopping for towable RVs, you don't know exactly how much that rig will weigh when actually in use. You only have an estimated range, which is between posted dry weight and dry weight plus load capacity. So dry weight is useful In that initial look at a towable In deciding if it is within the towing range of your TV. In each of my previous towables, the posted dry weight was fairly accurate. We have a scale on the farm, so weighing is not a big deal.
After owning lots of RVs, I know how much all the crap I carry adds to the dry weight. What is a guess, is how pin (hitch) weight will be affected by how each RV carries the load. But at least dry weight gives you a place to start when looking at new RVs.
Thank you! This is exactly why people start with the dry weight, it's a starting point and add 1000-1500 pounds of passengers and crap gives you a good place to figure out what you need.
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Old 04-12-2019, 08:51 AM   #15
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Daybreak

I just went through a similar scenario as you.
We recently purchased a used 2016 Ram 1500 Crew Cab, 8 speed, 3.21 gears at a towing capacity at about 8,000 lbs.

We had been looking at trailers for several months. Like you, we liked a few models in the 30-33 foot range with a dry weight in the 5500-6800 lb range. Yes, the dry weight is not going to be the actual weight once you load it, but it is the only number you have to use when buying. Figure it is going to weigh more depending on your gear.

Ultimately we ended up with a Coleman 2405bh. It is 27.5 feet long and dry weight of about 5,300. I was a bit concerned about the additional weight of a trailer 30+ feet would have, especially here in the mountains. I think if a 32 foot trailer is set up correctly you shouldn't have any sway issues, but it did cause me some concern if I did have some sway issues with a trailer that size and a half ton truck. Also, coming from our little hybrid TT, we could fit it in almost any campsite where we like to camp. I know I am going to have fewer options with a 27.5 foot camper and probably even fewer options at 32 feet. So that factored in as well.

Will that Ram 1500 pull the trailer you like? Yes. Will you probably be over payload with that trailer? Most likely. Some people here will say it is the end of the world if you are over payload and others are over and don't seem too concerned. If your payload sticker says 1400 lbs and you are 100-200 lbs over, I can't imagine that is going to be the end of the world.

It is going to be your decision as to your comfort level on the the size and weights.
Good luck!
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Old 04-12-2019, 09:18 AM   #16
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There are enough people chewing on you about the weights and payload that I won't go there. I will however share something about trailer length, and to a lesser extent height.
I found a rule of thumb while researching like you, (what can I tow)and it relates to TT bumper to ball length. Considering TV wheelbase (center axle front to center get axle back) the first 110" is good for 20 trailer length. Every 4 additional inches adds 1 ft to the TT. My f150 SCREW Max tow 1780 payload is 145". Longest TT I considered was 28ft.
Why??? 2 main reasons. Think of the TT as a potential lever working against mostly the rear axle but essentially the entireTV. Should forces acting on the trailer try to force it out of alignment with the TV, the longer that lever the greater its ability to destabilize. There is typically a good relationship between bumper to ball length and trailer box length. As one gets longer so does the other. As that box gets longer and I'll throw in height as well now, the side surface area exposed to wind natural or that made by passing vehicles, makes for tremendous destabilizing potential. Said simply, the greater the sqft of your trailer side, the less wind or whatever you need for it to destabilize the situation.
The only options to effectively deal with this potential destabilization are.
Longer wheelbase and typically larger TV
A 5th wheel that changes dynamics by moving the fulcrum (not much chance with a 1/2 ton)
A projection style hitch like a Hennsley or Propride. Both very heavy eating into your payload.

So I did buy a 28ft TT, GVW at 7000 and a brand with a lower height profile. Every weight category is in spec as verified at the Cat scale. Ive got 14% ready to camp wght on the ball. My anti sway WD hitch is moving 160# to front axle and 80# to TT axles. Im close to text book good in my setup.Guess what. When the wind blows I know it and when large semis come blasting by, I know it as well. Not out of control know it, but enough to say that my truck is telling me Hey I'm at my limit
You are doing the right thing by asking questions. Your potential 1/2 ton can tow plenty of trailer just possibly not your dream trailer.
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Old 04-12-2019, 10:29 AM   #17
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You got what I was asking! Thank you so much for understanding, I'm worried about that size trailer not weights and the smaller half ton pickup I understand the whole weights part and everyone is focused on that.
The weight police really are rabid and don't like to answer the question that was asked. People do actually do thier homework on these things and I know a properly spec'd out half ton will meet the requirements.
In case people didn't know the older 3/4 tons have pretty much the same tow capacity and payload of the newer 1/2 ton...just saying

Please excuse any typos my internet is down and I am using my phone.
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Old 04-12-2019, 10:39 AM   #18
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In case people didn't know the older 3/4 tons have pretty much the same tow capacity and payload of the newer 1/2 ton...just saying.
That may be the case in a few specific instances, but those two stats don't show the whole picture. 3/4 and 1 tons are much better suited for towing due to brakes, weight, axles, suspension, frame, etc.

I still advise that once you get over 27' in a TT, a fifth wheel, or any toy hauler, just get a 3/4 ton or better. And I pulled with a half ton for years with previous RVs.
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Old 04-12-2019, 11:35 AM   #19
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The weight police really are rabid and don't like to answer the question that was asked.
Typically people that call others "The Weight Police" know that what they are asking is probably too close to the edge and are looking for a way to justify their own mistakes.
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Old 04-12-2019, 11:52 AM   #20
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Typically people that call others "The Weight Police" know that what they are asking is probably too close to the edge and are looking for a way to justify their own mistakes.
Or, are just tired of the weight police type comments that are usually skewed to whatever side of the discussion they are on
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