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Old 09-05-2017, 01:29 PM   #1
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TT tongue is overweight (from factory)

I could use some help please (and I'm sorry for the long post but I wanted to get in the necessary details).

Camper: 2016 Vengeance 25V toy hauler travel trailer with fiberglass siding as our only option.
Truck: 2013 GMC Sierra 2500HD, diesel, 4x4, crewcab, standard bed (6.5')

I was looking at putting more batteries and/or a toolbox up front on the a-frame area so I purchased a trailer tongue scale (Sherline LM 2000 - Trailer Tongue Weight (tw) Scale 2000lb) to what I was starting with.

Well, the "fairly empty" tw comes in at 1550# ... it's supposed to be around 1014# (stock weight - I have the "fiberglass" siding option). I took it to the dealer and they got the same value with their scale (which is the same brand and gauge range). The scale will have an error of +/- 3% since it's not in the "center" of the gauge's range so that's +/- 45#. All holding tanks were empty.

When I say fairly empty, the trailer had the dishes, pots/pans, blankets and some misc. stuff and most of it is closer to the axles than the tongue so the added weight is mainly carried by the axles (I'll add 100# extra on the tongue for this stuff). I have 2x6v gf batteries (64# each) and a Weber Q200 (~42#). This adds about 270# extra. However, I can subtract almost one battery's worth of weight since the RV comes with one and one propane tank was empty and the other was 1/2 full. This brings the extra added tw to ... 270# (my starting tw) minus 42# (stock battery weight) minus 30# (less than full propane tanks) = 198# total added tw. This should bring my tw to ~1212# but I'm at 1550#!

My factory 2.5" Class 5 hitch is rated for 1500#.
My Reese 2" shank (I use the 2.5" to 2" adapter)
The weight distribution head and bars are rated for 1200#.

My factory stock hitch set up is pretty much overloaded right from the get go and I don't know of a factory stock vehicle that can tow this rv without "toys" in the backend. Yes, I could add 4x4 toys or motorcycles to the back but I don't have those. Our "toys" are kayaks and I like to carry a full tank of water with us. However, the fresh water tank is closer to the front than the axles so that'll increase the weight even more!

Also, the front a-frame/tongue area is designed for 2 batteries and a generator. That alone would overload the tongue.

The only way I know how to fix this is to drop ~$1000 for a ...
CURT Class 5 Commercial Duty Trailer Hitch #1586 (up to 2700# tw).
Blue Ox Weight Distribution - BXW2000 (up to 2000# tw).

I've called FR customer service. They've taken my info, said they'd look into it and get back to me but I haven't heard anything for a couple of weeks. I'm not getting any where on this.

Any thoughts on what to do?

Thanks,
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Old 09-05-2017, 01:51 PM   #2
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I would find it some what strange that your truck with a 2 1/2 inch class 5 hitch is only rated for 1500# but you may be correct. Have you checked to see what the hitch TW rating is for a weight distributing type hitch. Most are rated for two TW standard towing and WD towing and the WD number is many times higher than the standard towing number. The 2 1/2 to 2 adapter does reduce your TW rating but I do not know for sure how much off the top of my head.

Remember that as you add weight in your TT garage you will actually be reducing your tong weight.

You may want to ditch the adapter and secure a HD WD hitch that is 2 1/2 with at least a 1500# rating.
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Old 09-05-2017, 02:29 PM   #3
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johnm1, the 1014 number is a fantasy brochure number, for a base stripped down model.
NO trailer actually weighs its "dry" weight when it leaves the factory.
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Old 09-05-2017, 02:31 PM   #4
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Interesting just out of curiosity I checked my 15 Ram 2500 Diesel Class V hitch rating and it is rated at #1800 lbs.

I thought I remember seeing somewhere if you use the 2" adapter it drops the hitch rating down to a class IV hitch rating.
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Old 09-05-2017, 03:00 PM   #5
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1. I'll verify the factory hitch max tw sticker. It's out in the parking lot at work and I'm inside "working".

2. I know (and understand) that the 1014# tw is a "fantasy brochure number". However, the only option we have is the "fiberglass" walls instead of the "corrugated" alum walls. There aren't very many options available for this unit.

This is our 1st rv, out or 5, that doesn't list the "as built" tw on the weight sticker.

The only thing I can find online about my hitch is the "10-15% of trailer weight" rating. My rv weighs ~6500# empty so I should be between 650-975#'s of tw. I assume it'd be a bit higher due to it being a toy hauler.

I finally found the data I was looking for on my truck (in the owners manual of all places!).

The max tw for my truck (2500/3500 standard box) is 1500#. A long box is 2000#.
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Old 09-05-2017, 04:36 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnm1 View Post
2. I know (and understand) that the 1014# tw is a "fantasy brochure number". However, the only option we have is the "fiberglass" walls instead of the "corrugated" alum walls. There aren't very many options available for this unit.
I counted 22 "options' for the Vengeance TT.
Any option or forced option package weights are not included in the "dry" weight numbers.

Often, common things like: awning, oven, a/c, microwave, spare tire and so on, are not included in the dry weight number.
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Old 09-05-2017, 06:14 PM   #7
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Here's a screen grab of the sales brochure listing the 10 options that we're available on the 2015/2016 travel trailers. I do remember there were some others like a fuel tank and pump but we didn't get anything else besides what I list below.

We got:

Gel Coat sides
Power tongue jack
Screen wall (in rear of rig)
Glass shower enclosure
Ramp door patio system (in rear of rig)

But none of this "who weighed what when and how" matters. I couldn't care less about when or where the thing is/was weighed with what options. What I care about is I have a 3/4 ton diesel and the camper is OVER THE LIMITS OF MY TRUCK. I shouldn't even have to give this a 2nd thought when you consider that our whole dang camper (as optioned) is around 6500# empty.

I also included the specs and see that I was a bit off on the listed tw. It's 1126#, not 1014#. Either way, the rv's tw is much heavier than it should be.
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Old 09-05-2017, 06:49 PM   #8
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Is that max tongue weight rating for weight distribution or weight carrying. Often there will be 2 values, with a substantially higher value for use with WDH.
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Old 09-05-2017, 07:15 PM   #9
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Propane and batteries are not included in a brochure tongue weight. Some may disagree with this but it is my finding. The battery is not included in anything, but propane is included in the dry trailer weight.
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Old 09-05-2017, 07:20 PM   #10
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The weight sticker on the hitch lists one weight (nothing about with or without a w/d set up) but the owners manual says 1500 with a w/d setup.
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Old 09-05-2017, 07:26 PM   #11
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Why so much for a new hitch? I put a class V Curt on my work truck (2013 F350). It was fairly easy and cost me a few hundred bucks.

etrailer.com has multiple Curt class V hitches for less than $300.
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Old 09-05-2017, 07:44 PM   #12
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I need to replace my Reese w/d setup as well and BlueOx has the highest weight rating at 2000#. Reese "only" goes to 1700# and I'm already at 1600# fairly empty.
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Old 09-05-2017, 08:12 PM   #13
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https://www.etrailer.com/Weight-Dist...x/BXW2000.html

Blue Ox SwayPro Weight Distribution w/ Sway Control - Clamp On - 20,000 lbs GTW, 2,000 lbs TWBlue Ox Weight Distribution
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Shank fits 2-1/2" hitches and offers up to an 8" rise and a 2" drop. System uses optimal points of tension to help prevent sway while it balances your trailer's load for a more level ride. Clamp-on brackets require no drilling.

Try etrailer ............ https://www.etrailer.com/dept-pg-Wei...tribution.aspx

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Old 09-05-2017, 08:15 PM   #14
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That's the setup I listed in my original post.
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Old 09-05-2017, 08:25 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnm1 View Post
That's the setup I listed in my original post.
Thought so but you can find it for much less than $1000 there are other options as well.

Toy haulers are typically tongue heavy. I am not at all surprised.

But I would load the trailer as you would plan to camp then weight it again.

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Old 09-05-2017, 08:32 PM   #16
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Yes. $600+ for the BlueOx w/d setup plus $300 for the Curt hitch. That's where the approx $1000 comes from.
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Old 09-05-2017, 09:03 PM   #17
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TT tongue is overweight (from factory)

Toy haulers have a heavy TW until you load your toy in the back. My pin weight went down by almost 350 lbs when I load my 1500 lb side by side and gear in the garage.
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Old 09-05-2017, 09:35 PM   #18
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My 2014 GMC class V is rated at 1500/13000 straight towing...no WDH. With WDH it jumps to 16000 towing, but can't find the rating on the change on tongue weight.
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Old 09-05-2017, 09:41 PM   #19
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That would make sense. If they made the tongue weight too light then people could max weight the garage and make for a terribly unsafe tow. OP will have to get used to hauling toys or ballast towards the rear.
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Old 09-05-2017, 09:52 PM   #20
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Quote:
Our "toys" are kayaks and I like to carry a full tank of water with us
Quote:
I shouldn't even have to give this a 2nd thought when you consider that our whole dang camper (as optioned) is around 6500# empty.
It is a toy hauler... most people carry dune buggies, cycles, heavy stuff, so naturally the tongue will be heavy with the trailer unloaded from the factory.
12% times 9500# is 1140# tongue weight

With a nearly 3500# payload capacity on the Vengeance, your "toys" barely scratch that number. You mentioned batteries and such that you are adding. Would it be too much to mount anything heavy that you can as far back in the trailer as you can to help offset that monstrous tongue weight? Maybe add a metal floor/decking to the back? How about carting some sand bags back there? You have the payload capacity in the TT to offset the tongue weight to something more manageable with your current TV, you just have to use it.

You have to engineer something to do it. Instead of loading the built-in tank with water forward of the axle, buy a plastic or metal tank and mount it rear of the axle in the toy area deck, then pump it into TT system as you need it for boon-docking then replenish that water before you return home or hook to water at camp and leave the "heavy" water there. I would not let that factory tongue weight number screw me out of using the trailer with your current TV. You have a capable truck. Am I thinking wrong here?
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