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Old 05-03-2021, 07:17 AM   #1
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Why only 150# in the front storage?

When I purchased my camper (A214HW) the guys at the dealership said just donít put more than 150# combined in the front storage compartments. I havenít yet, but I was wondering why. I put a 5 inch lift on it and have a 6000# replacement axle from dexter on the way along with 16in wheels and better tires. My trailer tongue says not to exceed 700# which Iím still a couple hundred pounds short of even with putting 150# in the front storage. Iím also curious how is it legal to sell a trailer with a GVW higher than the 3000# axle they put on it?
Thanks in advance for helping out this camper new guy.
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Old 05-03-2021, 07:26 AM   #2
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All I can tell you is you better get plenty of tongue weight for the camper size or you will have towing/sway issues.
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Old 05-03-2021, 07:43 AM   #3
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The "guys at the dealer" are salespersons.
Take what ever they tell you with a grain of salt.
Tongue weight needs to be AT LEAST 10% of total weight.
Have you weighed your trailer?
That's what you need to do and then we can go from there.
More tongue weight helps reduce/eliminate tail wag. This is a big deal.
Hit the scales and go from there.
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Old 05-03-2021, 08:23 AM   #4
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the trailer weight is carried both by the tires/axles and the weight on the tongue. You should find that adding these two covers the GVWR of the trailer. Putting higher rated axles on doesn't change the GVWR from FR's pov.


I was pleasantly surprised to find the weight rating on the wheels of our ROO was considerably in excess of the GVWR of the trailer, until I realized the axles were the limiting factor in that structure.
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Old 05-03-2021, 08:53 AM   #5
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I suppose every unit can be a bit different, but looking up your model number gives me numbers as shown below...

The UVW is how much the trailer weighed from the factory... 2700#
the 653# CCC is how much cargo weight the trailer is designed to handle, which would include another 50# for a battery and " The UVW does not include cargo, fresh potable water, additional optional equipment or dealer installed accessories." 2700# + 653# = 3353# total weight of trailer. 3000# on the axle and 353# on the tow vehicle.

I am guessing that you have a 25 gallon fresh water tank so you have an additional #210 approx. of weight there.

The "salesmen" at the dealership were probably trying to be helpful ,but I wouldn't put much stock into their numbers.

As mentioned above your tongue weight should be at least 10-11%% of the total weight of the trailer or as is stated about 353# on the tongue of the trailer. MORE does not hurt but less will give an unstable towing experience. This video will demonstrate how that works...

https://youtu.be/w9Dgxe584Ss
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Old 05-03-2021, 04:28 PM   #6
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I am wondering, is that 6000# axle coming with springs. If it is then the ride being that stiff will shake that light trailer to pieces. That along with the stiffer side walls on the 16" wheels and tires. Add the additional sprung weight of the larger wheels and tires and that little rig should be coming off the highway at every joint in the pavement. If it doesn't have springs with it then the extra sprung weight will pound the existing springs to pieces along with the hangers and mounts. We all seem to think we know more than the Manufacturer and can improve on it but it is an engineered 'system'. Change one part and the system goes out of balance. For your sake I hope I'm wrong.

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Old 05-03-2021, 04:41 PM   #7
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Rsdata is correct. Those numbers work out exactly to a 3000lb axle being adequate because your tongue is rated for 353lbs. I think also you are referring to the stamped rating on the tongue, 700lbs, which is irrelevant. I suspect FR uses that tongue on multiple models.

Perhaps the sales person was suggesting putting more than 150lbs in the front compartment would increase tongue weight over 353lbs, so you need to balance your cargo to maintain 10-15% on the tongue. Lastly, getting a bigger, heavier axle probably increases your weight unnecessarily, taking away from your overall CCC.
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Old 05-03-2021, 05:20 PM   #8
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It sounds like you bought the wrong trailer and are trying to modify it into what you should have bought in the first place. Looks like the A122TH would more suit your needs.
Back in 2010 I bought a Flagstaff popup with the off road package and a deck to haul a Quad. Loved that wagon, towed easy and could get into any backwoods area that my F150 4x4 could. It was comparable to the 282TESP.
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Old 05-03-2021, 05:59 PM   #9
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Blackrock you are some what correct. The trailer i wanted was $40,000 rigged to go where I want to go. Not willing to pay that up front I am forced to modify this one. I don’t like people when I am camping. I am changing the water tank out to triple the holding capacity. Also putting in a composting toilet and tearing out the wet bath to add a residential shower pan and shower hook up. I don’t mind reinforcing the frame if it needs it but I can’t get forest river to call me back about how much it can handle. As far as it rattling apart, to late. I have a torsion axle so yes springs included. The shower pan has a 3in split off the drain and I have replaced a hand full of screws that have stripped out already. Yes it’s under warranty but I don’t want to wait a month to use it again. Also in previous campers we were able to store ice chests of meat inside when traveling. 1 boned out elk weighs 250-300lb. Thanks for everyone’s help!
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Old 05-03-2021, 07:10 PM   #10
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Well, that went well 👍
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Old 05-03-2021, 07:14 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wan2bMountainman View Post
Blackrock you are some what correct. The trailer i wanted was $40,000 rigged to go where I want to go. Not willing to pay that up front I am forced to modify this one. I donít like people when I am camping. I am changing the water tank out to triple the holding capacity. Also putting in a composting toilet and tearing out the wet bath to add a residential shower pan and shower hook up. I donít mind reinforcing the frame if it needs it but I canít get forest river to call me back about how much it can handle. As far as it rattling apart, to late. I have a torsion axle so yes springs included. The shower pan has a 3in split off the drain and I have replaced a hand full of screws that have stripped out already. Yes itís under warranty but I donít want to wait a month to use it again. Also in previous campers we were able to store ice chests of meat inside when traveling. 1 boned out elk weighs 250-300lb. Thanks for everyoneís help!
I hope you can get it built up the way you want. I sure liked that popup I had. I got rained out in SD shooting prairie Dogs and it took my truck and a F350 srw 4x4 to get me up out of the river bottom where I had camped on a fellers ranch. That was a sight with both trucks throwing mud in the air coming up a ranch road.
If you can't take a whiz off your front step you're camped to close to other people.
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Old 05-03-2021, 07:44 PM   #12
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Quote:
If you can't take a whiz off your front step you're camped to close to other people.
Blackrock, I like your thinking...
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Old 05-03-2021, 08:05 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by rsdata View Post
Blackrock, I like your thinking...
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Old 05-04-2021, 09:33 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wan2bMountainman View Post
When I purchased my camper (A214HW) the guys at the dealership said just donít put more than 150# combined in the front storage compartments.
Since no one else has pointed it out, my front compartment has a sticker, apparently "stuck" by FR, that the storage is limited to 150#. So it's not something the salesmen just told you out of the blue. Beyond that I could only speculate as to the reasons, like everyone else above.
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Old 05-05-2021, 01:37 PM   #15
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The GAWR being well under the TT GVWR thing was mind boggling to me, too, initially.
Capacity sells in the RV universe. So cheaper lower capacity axles can have the tongue weight that the tow vehicle actually carries ADDED to the GAWR to reach a higher GVWR.
6000# axle is a big jump from 3K. The adventure option in Wolf Pups now adds a 5K# axle (& bigger wheels) vice standard 3K#.
It appears that you are modding this trailer for off reading. An HD axle and bigger wheels with appropriate brakes will help get you there, for sure.
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Old 05-06-2021, 01:40 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wan2bMountainman View Post
When I purchased my camper (A214HW) the guys at the dealership said just don’t put more than 150# combined in the front storage compartments. I haven’t yet, but I was wondering why. I put a 5 inch lift on it and have a 6000# replacement axle from dexter on the way along with 16in wheels and better tires. My trailer tongue says not to exceed 700# which I’m still a couple hundred pounds short of even with putting 150# in the front storage. I’m also curious how is it legal to sell a trailer with a GVW higher than the 3000# axle they put on it?
Thanks in advance for helping out this camper new guy.
My 2019 T21TBHW (same as A213HW) has the same 150# sticker on the front storage. My suspicions for the reasons:
  • keep tongue weight reasonable. Half of the weight of stuff being stored in the front trunk adds to the tongue weight. So a front trunk loaded at 150lbs is adding 75lbs to the published tongue weight. And this is before the battery(ies) are added - almost all of which goes to tongue weight.
  • structure of the compartment can't handle high weights. Even though we keep our front storage lightly loaded to keep tongue weight down, the "sliding" lower front storage bin no longer slides. I have to take it apart this weekend to figure out why it's jamming. I have frame pieces that are stapled to the floor, but not against the wall.
As far as a 3000lb axle goes, I'm suspecting supply chain issues. Both my 2014 A122 and current A-frame had/have 3500lb axles. I know because I had to get axle size to get the correct rear seals when I lubed the wheel bearings. 3,500lb axles were the most widely used size before Covid and record sales. GVWs for the A-frame line were always less than the axle rating - your case is the 1st case I have heard of where it wasn't.

I wonder if your GVW was derated for the axle and/or tires. You might want to check GVWs for earlier model years. My 2019 A213HW has GVW of 3372lbs, GAWR 3500lbs.

Tires have to have at least 10% capacity reserve over the axle rating or GVW (since 2017). Both my A-frames came with LR D ST tires to have sufficient capacity. 2019 A213HW tires: ST 205/75R14 LR D with 2040lbs capacity each at 65PSI.

FWIW, water should be 20 gal tank + 6 gal water heater = 208lbs when full. Water tank is right behind axle, water heater is at front end of body in my model. Very little change in tongue weight from full or empty water.

hope this helps
Fred W
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