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Old 09-23-2010, 07:04 AM   #1
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New RV Selection

After looking at many trailers we are pretty sure we want the Rockwood Signature Ultra Lite 8315BSS. We will be full-timing half the year so the bedroom slide seems to be a priority as wife is somewhat claustrophobic and this model has great wardrobe storage, great bathroom with window and counter and lots of kitchen counter space and cabinets. The weight is a big factor this one under #6500 dry weight works for us.

We have looked a less expensive TT such as PUMA & Catalina with rear kitchen but no bedroom slideouts.

Some people have said you can't go too big but if you go to small you will end up replacing to a larger unit.

We will be spending $3-4K more for the Rockwood but we are leaning towards getting what we want rather than keeping the price lower.

Any full-timers have advice or Rockwood Signature-Ultra Lite owners?
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Old 09-23-2010, 07:19 AM   #2
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Welcome to the forum !!

In your signature, you asked for input on a TV, so here goes. A long wheelbased F150 would be a better choice over the Expy. But if it were me that towing that big of a trailer (the longest that Rockwood makes), I would be looking into an F250, Crew Cab, and 8' bed.......that model has a 172" wheelbase. Just my 2 cents worth.
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Old 09-23-2010, 07:49 AM   #3
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I wouldn't use dry weight as my benchmark because you are not going to tow it with the dry weight. You are better off looking at the gross weight of the trailer and getting a tow vehicle that will tow more than that. You will be surprised at how weight adds up when you load stuff in them.
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Old 09-23-2010, 08:08 AM   #4
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I have an 8315ss, no bedroom slide. It's dry weight is 6348, so I would guess your dry weight with the bedroom slide will probably be in the 6600 to 6700 range.

Since this is a front kitchen model, loaded for camping your tongue weight will probably be between 1100 and 1200 lbs. I did have an F-150 but the heavy tongue weight of this tt was too much. Most of the time it towed alright, but I did keep an eye on the rear view mirror for passing semi's. In high winds and rain it wasn't much fun. If you do decide to go with the F-150 make sure it has the Max Tow Package. I wouldn't tow this tt with anything less.

I went with the tv mtnguy pointed out, F-250, CC, LB, 172" wheelbase. I have no problems at all now. Wind, rain, passing sem's, makes little or no difference in how the tt tows.

Hope this helps.
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Old 09-23-2010, 08:55 AM   #5
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Yup, that trailer is a nice choice for what you are planning. I think it will do you fine for "partial full-timing". It has a nice open floorplan that should suit you fine.

As for the TV, I will agree with the Expy as a non-choice for sure. I would also agree with the F-250 as a "best" option, however, I am not too sure it needs to be the longbed. I would not argue it too much though either. If you were to get a Crew Cab, that would give you more of a wheelbase with a shortbed. However, I have a longbed Crew Cab myself, and while it was a little intimidating at first (it's a LOT of truck), it has worked out nicely, and I really enjoy driving it.

I do not believe an F-150 is going to be enough truck for this trailer. Even with the max tow package, the 5.4L engine, and a good rear-end (3.73 or better), that is a big trailer. You will be much more comfortable with an F-250 (or 2500 of you're looking at the "other" guys).
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Old 09-23-2010, 10:06 AM   #6
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We have that same model (8315BSS) 2010 year. Tow it with an '07 Dodge Ram 1500 5.7L Hemi w factory tow package. Does the job quite well, however when it comes time to change trucks, we will probably move up to a 2500 diesel. Strangely, the Ram seems to like towing the 8315BSS better than our previous trailer, which was a smaller and lighter 2601SS !

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Old 09-23-2010, 10:12 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EdJunior View Post
You will be much more comfortable with an F-250 (or 2500 of you're looking at the "other" guys).
I didn't mean to discriminate against the other guys with my other post. Since the Expy and F150 were mentioned in the 1st post, then I presumed Ford was preferred. A long wheelbased GM or Dodge 3/4 ton truck would also be a great choice for this trailer.
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Old 09-23-2010, 06:21 PM   #8
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Today we DID order the above RV as mentioned. We looked through the floor model and decided that we wanted the Tuscan Cream cabinets and the wood like vinyl (minimal carpeting) flooring which we have in our home and love, the king dinette rather than chairs or the standard dinette. We ordered the power hitch, stab jacks and awning we are thrilled with our choice. We used the bid from RV Wholesalers (after they knocked another $1500 off) as our ammunition to dicker with our local RV dealer and it worked - they matched the price. After we told RV Wholesalers they called back and knocked another $500 off. We are sticking with the local as RVW wanted a non-refundable deposit and full payment in a few weeks. The local is coordinating our delivery for an April delivery/closing.

Thanks for all your input on the TV....
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Old 09-23-2010, 06:34 PM   #9
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Congratulations on the new rig. I think you were wise to stick with your local dealer because he is who you will need to have any warranty work done. Besides on a purchase that big $500 isn't that much. Hopefully he is a good dealer and will stick with you in case you need him.
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Old 09-23-2010, 06:48 PM   #10
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Congrats on the purchase. And with an April delivery, you have plenty of time to make the decision on your TV.

Yeah, I'm with you Chap. I made the same assumption, and of course me being a Ford guy anyway (at least for my trucks!), I hesitated to put that, but I did want to be fair!
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Old 09-24-2010, 09:56 AM   #11
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We are digesting the about input from all of you and doing further research. We have months to do this so we get a TV that works well for us and pulls our TT safely and easily. Keep em coming!
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Old 09-29-2010, 07:36 PM   #12
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We just bought a 2011 Flagstaff 831FKBSS (identical to the Rockwood and exact same stats on weights from FR). Don't believe the UVW you see on the FR website. Ours is stamped 6907 lbs from the factory. Add the battery and propane and it runs right about 7K dry. My sherline reads 1,060 lbs TW. Add the EQ hitch and you are looking at right about 1150 lbs TW. I have a F250 and would not even consider a smaller truck for this trailer.
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Old 09-29-2010, 07:44 PM   #13
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to the forum, it sounds like you have been camping for a while.
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:27 AM   #14
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The factory sticker on our 831FKBSS says 6,828 pds. That's 550 pd more than the brochure. We went with free standing table and we added slide awnings along with all the power goodies.

Last time we weighed the rig, hitched up, the weight on the truck axles was 6,908 and on the trailer axles, 7128. That was near to home at the end of a dry camping weekend so there were 43 U.S. gallons of water disbursed among the holding tanks, plus the water heater.

On a different occasion, with battery and full propane, but, no water at all, the unhitched tongue weight was 1,012.

Our pickup is the strongest "half ton" you could get in January of '07 and we are very happy with how it pulled the Flagstaff over 1,500 miles this summer. Even so, you will likely tow for several thousand miles farther a year than we do. Along with several previous posters, my advice about a tow vehicle is that the 3/4 ton is a better option. Dodge, Ford, GM all make great trucks and you wouldn't go wrong with any of them.
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Old 09-30-2010, 07:05 AM   #15
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Thanks for the info. First of all how do you like your Flagstaff? After reading all the input here we are looking at a 3/4 ton and will do a truck unless we can find that a HD SUV like a Suburban or Excursion will safely and adequately handle our TT and allow us comfortably have several passengers. Since the Rockwood is a lower hgt trailer and we have knee issues a lower SUV is preferred to a truck. But being safe is more important so if we must tow it with a truck we will. After one posting about hitch weight and checking specs it is clear that the Expedition is borderline in regards to tongue weight so it is off our list.,
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2012 Flagstaff 831FKBSS
Ford Expedition /Hensley Arrow Hitch
2011 Camping Days: 93 (thru 12/31)
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Old 09-30-2010, 07:11 PM   #16
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Thanks for the welcome rockwood06. Lifetime tent camper, just started RV'ing last year. Hit my fifties and got a roof. New truck this spring led to the new trailer and hopefully we are set for a while.

We love the Flagstaff. Moved (up) from a Keystone product which was also good.

I hope it didn't come across that I was knocking 1/2 tons, just meant that I personally feel more comfortable with the 3/4. I am a lot more conservative as i get older.
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Old 10-01-2010, 12:30 AM   #17
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debron911

Perhaps it is a problem with any trailer that's 34+ feet in exterior length, but, our FK is pretty jiggly when we set it up. It moves when you walk around inside it. I've also got a touchy stabilizer jack motor that blows fuses if you let it lift all the way up and bind at the top.

There are some other annoyances, but, I'm sure if we chose our RV differently we'd just have a different set of annoyances. Our experience after one season is that the FK seems to be put together pretty well and it is very well equipped. We'll figure out how to get the jigglies to go away and we'll certainly enjoy all the amenities.

The FK pulls very well behind our truck, better than the smaller and lighter unit it replaced. It backs into a camp site better too. Overall we're pretty happy with it.

lbrjet, there's no offense taken.

No question, a garden variety 1/2 ton will not tow our trailer either economically nor safely. However, our GMC with Vortec Max power train and heavy duty trailer tow package is no garden variety 1/2 ton. I did the research, learned what the actual load capacities are for our truck as equipped and I'm satisfied that we tow within the truck's engineered capabilities.
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