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Author Topic: Enclosed Trailer Towing  (Read 987 times)

Bagelboy

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Enclosed Trailer Towing
« on: February 06, 2017, 07:10:11 AM »
We have a 32 foot Class C Holiday Rambler that my wife and I love. We make frequent trips from New York to Florida, 1200 miles door to door. We were thinking of hauling a toad, but our vehicles are all wheel drive vehicles, so my wife has agreed to a possible enclosed trailer, say 6x10 to haul our motorcycle, golf clubs etc. Does anyone have any experience with the vehicle handling as far as swaying, pulling etc. Also, do you think it will affect gas mileage? Any input is appreciated!
2016 32' Holiday Rambler Vesta.                                                 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee (Toad)

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Enclosed Trailer Towing
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2017, 07:25:23 AM »
Many modern AWD models are flat towable, e.g. most Ford & GM SUVs. Have you actually checked yours?

Whether towing or trailering, you will probably notice some modest effect on mpg, maybe 1/4-1/2 less. That stems from additional tire rolling resistance and air resistance.

A properly balanced trailer, i.e. 10-12% of the trailer weight on the hitch ball, won't sway or otherwise cause problems.
Gary
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scottydl

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Re: Enclosed Trailer Towing
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2017, 07:28:38 AM »
It'll affect gas mileage, maybe by 1-2 mpg... assuming you are getting around 7-8 mpg now with that large Class C.  You'd want to make sure you have the cargo capacity remaining to pull that much weight.  Have you ever weighed your motorhome, and do you know what it's capable of towing?  If you give us some more info on year, model, and chassis (Chevy or Ford) we can probably help you figure that out.  Also look for the towing data tag with all the capacity information, which is usually posted in the interior cab area someplace.  Your Class C may have some data stickers in the driver's doorjamb that have useful info too.
Scott, wife, 3 boys... and the dog
- 2008 Forest River Wildwood 32BHDS
- 1995 Chevrolet Suburban C2500 tow vehicle
- 1994 Thor Residency motorhome... owned 2007-2012

John From Detroit

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Re: Enclosed Trailer Towing
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2017, 07:35:09 AM »
Considerations:
Is yoru Motor home a Gasser or a Big D (Diesel)
Most gassers are doing good if they can tow 5,000 pounds. yoru AWD car is likely close to that and when you add in the weight of the trailer you are way over limit.

Most Big D's have no tribble with 7,000 or more.. So you are good to tow.

If you have the CGVW-GVW to tow it (Combined Gross Vehicle Weight - Weight of the motor home loaded) then you have the following:

Disadvantage:  Trailer to "Stow" when you are camping.. ONE CG I stay at has a rule no trailers on site unless still hitched to MH  (I have a cheat on that but only for dollys)
More weight = Less MPG.. or so the theory goes.

Advantages:  You can back up a trailer,, not so a 4-down car
Portable Garage.. When you get home you use the remote garage door opener (yes they make them for Trailers) to open the door/ramp and pull in,, Close the door (Same remote) and when the rain falls, or the snow falls, or the whatever falls,, your car is nice and garaged.

now to me.. That one might just be worth it..  except I do not have the CGVW-GVW to tow a trailer with a car in it.. But If I ever upgrade the MH.. I may consider.
Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
My Home is where I park it.

Alfa38User

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Re: Enclosed Trailer Towing
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2017, 09:32:03 AM »
The maximum weight you can pull with the hitch installed on it should be stamped right into the hitch itself as well as in the motor home documentation. Many Class C are limited to 5000 lbs with a 500 lb tongue weight on the hitch. Some can be less though, usually due to the construction of any extension to the truck frame that was required. Example: On two new 2009 BT Cruisers I looked at, the one on the Ford chassis the hitch rating was 5000 lbs but on the GM Chassis it was only 3000 lbs. These were otherwise identical motor homes.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2017, 09:39:38 AM by Alfa38User »
Stu
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scottydl

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Re: Enclosed Trailer Towing
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2017, 05:04:40 PM »
Many Class C are limited to 5000 lbs with a 500 lb tongue weight on the hitch. Some can be less though, usually due to the construction of any extension to the truck frame that was required.

This was the case on my 1994 Class A.  It had a 5000# Class 4 hitch, but a sticker on the hitch itself (which was almost worn to the point of being illegible) stated the maximum tow limit was 3500#.  That was obviously due to how the hitch was connected, which was only using 4 small bolts on an adapter welded (pretty small welds BTW) to the rear frame rail.  I eventually had a metal fabrication guy reinforce the hitch connections by adding long steel plates and a couple dozen bolts.
Scott, wife, 3 boys... and the dog
- 2008 Forest River Wildwood 32BHDS
- 1995 Chevrolet Suburban C2500 tow vehicle
- 1994 Thor Residency motorhome... owned 2007-2012

hedhunter9

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Re: Enclosed Trailer Towing
« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2017, 08:19:37 PM »
I have pulled half a dozen enclosed trailers in the past 30 years.  Pulled on over 100,000 miles behind our old Class C.
Our last one, we put over 50,000 miles on it behind our 31 foot Class A.

The 7x12 tandam axle trailer we pulled behind our Georgie Boy with a Ford 460 didnt change its Milage at all. It got 10MPG
towing it and got 10MPG not towing...   I think it was the gearing on it.. That old one didnt have overdrive and the motor was turning
some pretty good RPM's at 70MPH... But  that motorhome could accelerate with any traffic !   It also never slowed down going over the mountains..
It would go over them at 55-60MPH with no problem...Towing a 12 foot enclosed trailer !

Our last MH, a Coachmen 31 Foot Class A with the Chevy 454 towed a 7x12 single axle enclosed trailer all over the US.  We got 7.5 to 8.5 MPG.
We took one trip to S.C. with out the trailer and we got 7.8 to 8.7 MPG each tank full....  Slightly better not towing.
This MH had overdrive, but it was a bigger heavier MH  18,000lbs compared to 12,000 on our old class C

Our currant MH is a Thor Outlaw Toyhauler, so we dont need to pull a trailer anymore,  But we did have to pull our trailer back home from La where we traded out old MH in..   We got 7.7 MPG on the 1,000 mile trip home.  The Outlaw has the Ford v-10 motor in it with a 5 speed tranny.  This motor runs higher RPM,  and the Outlaw weighs more, loaded 24,000lbs, and it is taller, (13.3 foot tall) so I dont think we will get as good a MPG average as our old one...  We are getting ready for a trip to Florida soon so we will find out..

 As far as towing, sway etc.  A trailer will affect you slightly, When a semi pass's you it will push the trailer slightly which you have to steer to correct for it..  How much depends on how much rear overhang on the MH.. The longer the tail, the more a trailer will affect it.  On our Old Class C which was short with a very short overhang, the tandom axle trailer hardly affected it at all.....   Now the Outlaw with a Long overhang pulling the single axle trailer is affected much more...  A couple times on our return home trip, we got passed by a semi and and we got pushed around a bunch.  My wife thought something was wrong !    I told her, "its because of the longer MH and rear overhang" .  Keep it below 80 MPH!.. (she likes to drive faster than me)

Bob
« Last Edit: February 06, 2017, 08:23:17 PM by hedhunter9 »
Bob n Sharon
2008 Outlaw 37' Toyhauler
2 Yamaha Majesty's
Northern Indiana

Lou Schneider

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Re: Enclosed Trailer Towing
« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2017, 08:45:12 PM »
I'm  towing a 21 ft. enclosed dual axle trailer behind a 27 ft. Chevy motorhome.  When I bought the motorhome it didn't have a hitch receiver, so I had one put on at a custom hitch shop.  I asked them if they could upgrade the hitch to 10,000 lbs. - since the motorhome had a short rear overhang without any added frame extension they agreed it was feasible.  The cost wasn't much more than the regular 5000 lb. hitch, basically the cost of the extra steel.

This doesn't change the tow rating of the motorhome, but it added extra peace of mind when I was flat towing my 3500 lb. Bronco II.

Now that I'm towing a largish trailer, I'm glad I went with the stronger receiver.

With the short rear overhang I really don't feel any push from passing trucks, etc.  The only time I feel the trailer is while accelerating or going up hills, and there I do as good or better than the majority of large trucks.  I mostly stay in the right lane on freeways and match the speed of the trucks - in CA that's about 60-65 MPH most of the time.

The dry weight of the trailer is 3500 lbs, inside i'm hauling the Bronco II adding another 3500 lbs. plus some miscellaneous tools.  The trailer's GVWR rating is 10,000 lbs.  I may add a workshop or a motorcycle in the future.

The biggest thing that helps the towability of a larger trailer is an equalizing trailer hitch like you'd use with a travel trailer.  Not to keep the rear of the motorhome from sagging, but to stop the trailer from bouncing the rear of the motorhome up and down as you go over irregularities.  Throwing weight forward to the motorhome's front wheels and keeping the ride level is a bonus.

I'm using an Eaz-Lift hitch that I got with another trailer, but Harbor Freight has a reasonable looking clone for about $200.

Don't forget you'll also need a brake controller.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2017, 09:59:23 PM by Lou Schneider »

Bagelboy

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Re: Enclosed Trailer Towing
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2017, 05:02:26 PM »
Thank you everyone for your responses. We have a Class C 32 foot with a Ford 450. We plan on pulling a 6 x 10 with about 1500 to 2000 lbs of cargo.
2016 32' Holiday Rambler Vesta.                                                 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee (Toad)

 

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