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Author Topic: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton  (Read 569 times)

NACEInspector

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Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« on: August 20, 2018, 07:30:58 AM »
I am looking at pulling the trigger this week on a Keystone Cougar Half-Ton 33 SAB.  I am going to be the one living out of it while on the road 90% of the year.  I do pipeline inspection work and jobs are either in one location for a long time or following a pipeline.

I have been looking for a hitch to purchase and I am kind of lost.  The dealership wants to sell me one, shocker, for almost 700 bucks but I am finding them online for  250 to 500 dollars.  Does anyone have a suggestion?

I have a 2014 Ford F-150 Limited Eco (V-6) Super Crew

lynnmor

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2018, 08:14:49 AM »
That trailer is not something that I would pull with a half ton truck, so I have no recommendation for a hitch.

ysidive

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  • Coachmen Freedom Express , 2018 2500HD Duramax
Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2018, 08:32:07 AM »
If the keystone specs that I checked for that trailer are correct on their website the trailer has a shipping weight of almost 9000 pounds with a tongue weight of over 1200 pounds... That is WAY TOO MUCH for that truck... Just because there marketing decided to call it the Half Ton does not mean it can be towed by a half ton truck.. I would venture to say that you need to check your door for the GVW and maximum combined Gross Vehicle Weght rating.. (Combined Truck & Trailer)   Check the yellow tire sticker with payload also...  This is just my Humble opinion, but I think that the experts will agree....
Silverado Z71 Custom Sport Duramax
Freedom Express 281RLDS

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2018, 08:55:46 AM »
I agree, too much trailer for that truck. 
2016 F350 Crew Cab Dually King Ranch Diesel
2017 Keystone Fuzion Impact 303
Track Bike  2008 GSX-R750
"If it ain't Fast......It ain't Fun

Gods Country

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2018, 08:56:01 AM »
Be sure your truck can handle it.  You already distrust the dealer selling you an overpriced hitch.  After all they only lie when their lips are moving.

Is this "half ton" trailer some marketing gimmick to sell to half ton truck owners?

NACEInspector

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2018, 09:55:03 AM »
I agree, too much trailer for that truck.

Thank you, I distrust any salesperson especially when it relates to a high ticket item.  My truck says I can tow 9600 (per camping world towing Guide). I put the VIN in for the RV and the dry weight is 9,845 lbs.  Ugh, so this is to much trailer for my truck.  All of that shopping around and this happens.  Thank you all for your comments, I guess the sales people were all telling me it could pull 11,300 pounds. 

I am getting confused now.  I have a lot of different sites telling me different things as far as weight.  What should I be looking at?

Gods Country

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2018, 10:31:26 AM »
Thank you, I distrust any salesperson especially when it relates to a high ticket item.  My truck says I can tow 9600 (per camping world towing Guide). I put the VIN in for the RV and the dry weight is 9,845 lbs.  Ugh, so this is to much trailer for my truck.  All of that shopping around and this happens.  Thank you all for your comments, I guess the sales people were all telling me it could pull 11,300 pounds. 

I am getting confused now.  I have a lot of different sites telling me different things as far as weight.  What should I be looking at?


Hey, good on you for asking.  most people come after they purchase.

Rule1:  dry weight is a marketing scam.  You need to assume your trailer will be at the max. weight rating, so focus on that.
Rule2:  towing capability is a scam.  Towing 12,000 means zilch if your truck is overweight, so look for the yellow sticker on the
           drivers side door frame.  That should tell you the max cargo capacity of YOUR vehicle.

Figure on 12-13% of the max trailer weight as the load the trailer will place on the vehicle. because that is a realistic number, not the 10% trailer brochures publish.  That weight, plus passengers, all cargo (tools, clothes, everything), hitch, etc, get subtracted from the cargo capacity.  Try to stay within about 80-85% of that number.  That gives you a safe margin, so you are not overloaded, or maxing out your trucks ability.

Once you satisfy those numbers look at towing capacity, but generally if you keep the cargo capacity safe the other numbers should be no problem. 

Then there is the more realistic concerns, like should I be towing a 30' plus trailer with a half ton truck.   That depends a lot on your driving habits, and destinations.  Even moderate hills are going to give your truck a work out.   Personally i wouldn't tow anything over 25' with a 1/2 ton.  Lots of people do.  More power to them.  I don't trust what other people do as a rule for my safety.

Then you can purchase a hitch elsewhere ;D

xrated

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2018, 10:53:56 AM »
First and foremost, find and VERIFY the ACTUAL numbers for YOUR truck.  By numbers I mean the GVWR, GCVWR, Payload rating, RAWR, FAWR, tire load capacity, hitch rating using a Weight Distribution Hitch (WDH), and just as importantly....or more so, if you are willing to upgrade the truck if necessary to get the size trailer you want......OR.....you cannot upgrade the truck so you have to get a smaller trailer and keep your existing truck.  Every truck since about 2007 will have stickers on the driver side door post that will tell you GVWR, payload capacity, etc. and those numbers are for your truck, not from a sales brochure that talks about max. Towing capabilities. 

Once you decide on which way to go (upgrade truck for the trailer you want....or downsize the trailer and keep your truck), then you can make smart choices on a truck trailer combination that works for you.

As far as trailer weights go, every manufacturer will list the GVWR of that trailer. That number will be the weight of the trailer itself and everything you put in it....your cargo!  Sometimes the empty weight of a trailer will change a bit from model year to model year.  That is because of manufacturing changes of some of the components generally.  A very good rule of thumb for calculating the tongue weight on any given tow behind trailer is to figure the GVWR number times 12-13%.  So, a 10,000 lb trailer should have between 1200 to 1300 lbs of tongue weight.  Every single pound of that tongue weight counts against your truck's available payload capacity......what ever that number is (located on the driver side door post and usually a white with yellow highlighted numbers).  Then you have to take into act the WDH, which will probably be about 75-100 lbs, then anything and everything that will go in or on the truck.....tools, toolbox, bed cover, whatever.  All of those items are taking away from the available payload capacity.  Now, in addition to not going over payload capacity, you also do not want to exceed the other capacities that I mentioned earlier...GCVWR, RAWR, RAWR, tire load capacity, hitch capacity, etc.

Hopefully, this will help you get started with your decision and how to make sense of all these numbers and capacities
2016 F350 Crew Cab Dually King Ranch Diesel
2017 Keystone Fuzion Impact 303
Track Bike  2008 GSX-R750
"If it ain't Fast......It ain't Fun

kdbgoat

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2018, 10:55:57 AM »
Trucks have to do two things to get a trailer down the road. They have to pull the weight of the trailer, and they have to carry the tongue or pin weight. Most trucks are rated to pull a whopper of a trailer, but they can't carry the tongue or pin weight. That's why folks are telling you that you need a bigger truck. You cant go by the dry weight despite whatever the salesman says. No one goes out in an empty trailer. You also can't go by the truck's brochure for towing weight and payload. You should go by the tire and loading placard, better known as the "yellow sticker" that is on the pillar when you open the driver's door. That is the amounts for your particular truck, not a stripped down version the brochure uses to make the numbers look good. Around here, most of us go by the GVWR of the trailer when trying to match a truck. The GVWR of that trailer is 10,500#. The tongue weight on that trailer will be at least 1050# and up to 1575# if you stay in the recommended range which is 10 to 15% of the trailer's GVWR. 
I know you believe you understand what you think I said,
But I am not sure you realize what you heard is not what I meant


2016 Leprechaun 319DS

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2018, 10:59:22 AM »

Hey, good on you for asking.  most people come after they purchase.

Rule1:  dry weight is a marketing scam.  You need to assume your trailer will be at the max. weight rating, so focus on that.
Rule2:  towing capability is a scam.  Towing 12,000 means zilch if your truck is overweight, so look for the yellow sticker on the
           drivers side door frame.  That should tell you the max cargo capacity of YOUR vehicle.

Figure on 12-13% of the max trailer weight as the load the trailer will place on the vehicle. because that is a realistic number, not the 10% trailer brochures publish.  That weight, plus passengers, all cargo (tools, clothes, everything), hitch, etc, get subtracted from the cargo capacity.  Try to stay within about 80-85% of that number.  That gives you a safe margin, so you are not overloaded, or maxing out your trucks ability.

Once you satisfy those numbers look at towing capacity, but generally if you keep the cargo capacity safe the other numbers should be no problem. 

Then there is the more realistic concerns, like should I be towing a 30' plus trailer with a half ton truck.   That depends a lot on your driving habits, and destinations.  Even moderate hills are going to give your truck a work out.   Personally i wouldn't tow anything over 25' with a 1/2 ton.  Lots of people do.  More power to them.  I don't trust what other people do as a rule for my safety.

Then you can purchase a hitch elsewhere ;D

Yo posted while I was typing (on a tablet, so much slower.  :)  But we both said about the same thing!   :))
2016 F350 Crew Cab Dually King Ranch Diesel
2017 Keystone Fuzion Impact 303
Track Bike  2008 GSX-R750
"If it ain't Fast......It ain't Fun

ro1459

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #10 on: August 20, 2018, 04:29:58 PM »
I have a 32 SAB and I can assure you that you cannot pull it in any type of inclines with a F-150. I know, I tried. I now have a F-250 diesel and it works great. BTW, you will love that trailer. But to answer your question, I used an Equalizer, 12,000 pound and have no problems with sway. I bought it from Amazon and had the dealer install it for me. Good Luck.
« Last Edit: August 20, 2018, 04:33:32 PM by ro1459 »
Ray and Betsy
2016 Ford F-250 6.7 L Diesel
2014 Keystone Cougar 32 SAB
Soddy Daisy, TN

grashley

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #11 on: August 20, 2018, 09:01:40 PM »
Very good advise above!  It looks like a really nice camper, but at a GVWR of 10,500#, it will overload your very nice truck.  Unfortunately, they will not play nicely together.  You either need a smaller camper - under 8000# GVWR?? or a bigger truck.  A F250 would be fine.  A F150 special ordered with the HDPayload package may also do the job.
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS  Progressive HW50C
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4   TST TMS  Garmin 760
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
It's not a dumb question if you do not know the answer.

NACEInspector

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #12 on: August 22, 2018, 05:47:41 PM »
Very good advise above!  It looks like a really nice camper, but at a GVWR of 10,500#, it will overload your very nice truck.  Unfortunately, they will not play nicely together.  You either need a smaller camper - under 8000# GVWR?? or a bigger truck.  A F250 would be fine.  A F150 special ordered with the HDPayload package may also do the job.

Thank you all for your feedback.  I have gotten various comments on what my truck can and cannot haul.  This is what the VIN says I can pull. 
Dead Weight Hitch - Max Trailer Wt. 7300  lbs  7300.0 min 7700.0 max
Dead Weight Hitch - Max Tongue Wt. 730  lbs  730.0 min 770.0 max
Wt Distributing Hitch - Max Trailer Wt. 7300  lbs  7300.0 min 7700.0 max
Wt Distributing Hitch - Max Tongue Wt. 730  lbs  730.0 min 770.0 max

But if I go to the Ford.com towing guide it says Maximum loaded trailer weight is 9,600 lbs.  All these numbers have me even more confused.  Of course, the dealership says I will be fine pulling that trailer but I do not want to ruin my engine and I am not ready to go from an F150 to an F250. 

Now I am just confused on what to get.  It will only be myself in the trailer doing inspection work.  Sucks that I found a trailer I really like that fits my needs and if my wife wanted to visit me or we moved to Texas we could have a place to stay until we found.

Any suggestions on something like this Cougar that will not destroy my engine?

ro1459

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #13 on: August 22, 2018, 06:45:36 PM »
Have you looked at the Grand Design Imagine 2500 RL. This is one we were going to purchase before we bought the F-250 and the 32SAB. It's 30 feet long, which makes it easier to tow and is rear living like the SAB. Grand Design is one of the better built TT on the market. Their web site says the hitch weight is under 600 pounds. But, it only has one slide and queen bed. Much bigger than this and I believe your 150 is going to be pushing its limits. As far weights you can pull, go with your VIN info. The Ford towing guide is generic and your VIN and the yellow sticker are for your truck. Best wishes.
Ray and Betsy
2016 Ford F-250 6.7 L Diesel
2014 Keystone Cougar 32 SAB
Soddy Daisy, TN

darsben

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #14 on: August 22, 2018, 07:06:26 PM »
redacted
« Last Edit: August 22, 2018, 09:42:34 PM by darsben »
1990 Fleetwood Southwind on P30 chassis located in
Central NY in summer and beautiful Casa Grande AZ in winter

NACEInspector

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #15 on: August 22, 2018, 09:02:44 PM »
I am not sure it makes any difference but I do have the Supercrew 4X4 and I went down from the 22-inch rims to the 20-inch rims with good tires that can handle the off road and also not blowing a tire on the ROW.  I also have the Axle of 3.73.  This is where they got their information from for the weight pulling limits.
 
https://www.ford.com/resources/ford/general/pdf/towingguides/14FLRV&TT_F150_Sep11.pdf

As far as what I will travel with it will not be much.  I am a simple guy so mainly work clothing, computer, inspection tools (very light) and a few other items.  I do see where the weight can add up quick.  But no kids, dogs, wife....Just me and my man stuff so I will travel light.

I am listening to you guys over anyone else now.  I would rather be safe than broke down on the road.  I spend way to much time in my truck watching others work and I really love that darn 2014 F-150 Limited.

NACEInspector

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #16 on: August 22, 2018, 09:11:16 PM »
Have you looked at the Grand Design Imagine 2500 RL. This is one we were going to purchase before we bought the F-250 and the 32SAB. It's 30 feet long, which makes it easier to tow and is rear living like the SAB. Grand Design is one of the better built TT on the market. Their web site says the hitch weight is under 600 pounds. But, it only has one slide and queen bed. Much bigger than this and I believe your 150 is going to be pushing its limits. As far weights you can pull, go with your VIN info. The Ford towing guide is generic and your VIN and the yellow sticker are for your truck. Best wishes.

I am going to look at those.  There are 2 or 3 dealers in the state.  I hate having to get out and shop around again but that is what I am going to have to do. 

darsben

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #17 on: August 22, 2018, 09:23:59 PM »
redacted
« Last Edit: August 22, 2018, 09:39:09 PM by darsben »
1990 Fleetwood Southwind on P30 chassis located in
Central NY in summer and beautiful Casa Grande AZ in winter

grashley

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #18 on: August 22, 2018, 09:24:06 PM »
Please find the yellow border placard on the driver door latch pillar which states the maximum weight go passengers and cargo shall not exceed XXXX pounds.  That is the payload for YOUR truck as it left the factory.  It is what it says.

Add together the weight of all passengers and cargo you will have in the truck.  Add 80# for the WD hitch.  Add 10% - 12% of the weight of the of the loaded camper.  I suspect you will be overweight by this measure.

The VIN check gave a specific tow capacity for YOUR truck, taking into account the actual weight of the truck, not a base model, and the options on the truck.  It confirms what we had said that a 10,500# camper is too heavy.

The 9600# tow limit from the web site means they make a F150 Eco that can tow 9600#.  It is likely an XL trim regular cab, 8 ft bed with tow package, max payload package, and no other options.  It still should not pull a 10,500 FVWR TT.

We want you to be safe and not destroy your very nice truck by asking it to do something it was not designed to do.  You are wise to not believe the salesman!
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS  Progressive HW50C
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4   TST TMS  Garmin 760
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
It's not a dumb question if you do not know the answer.

grashley

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #19 on: August 22, 2018, 09:26:14 PM »
darsben

He is looking at towing a TT, not a  FW !
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS  Progressive HW50C
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4   TST TMS  Garmin 760
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
It's not a dumb question if you do not know the answer.

NACEInspector

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #20 on: August 22, 2018, 10:03:01 PM »
Please find the yellow border placard on the driver door latch pillar which states the maximum weight go passengers and cargo shall not exceed XXXX pounds.  That is the payload for YOUR truck as it left the factory.  It is what it says.

Add together the weight of all passengers and cargo you will have in the truck.  Add 80# for the WD hitch.  Add 10% - 12% of the weight of the of the loaded camper.  I suspect you will be overweight by this measure.

The VIN check gave a specific tow capacity for YOUR truck, taking into account the actual weight of the truck, not a base model, and the options on the truck.  It confirms what we had said that a 10,500# camper is too heavy.

The 9600# tow limit from the web site means they make a F150 Eco that can tow 9600#.  It is likely an XL trim regular cab, 8 ft bed with tow package, max payload package, and no other options.  It still should not pull a 10,500 FVWR TT.

We want you to be safe and not destroy your very nice truck by asking it to do something it was not designed to do.  You are wise to not believe the salesman!

Thank you again, I am now looking at the lighter TT now, under 8,000 lbs.  The sales people could give a rip if I blow my truck up so thank you all for your help on this.  Saved me a huge headache down the road.  I am thankful that I did not do what my buddies tried to tell me to do and "pull the trigger".  It is nice of yall to help me.  I know I am new to this and doing my homework is paying off.  I am in a rush to find a good TT and learn the lingo.  I am going to keep watching this thread and I do value your time and opinions. 

Labor day is around the corner and I know they will be trying the hard sells and what not but I am looking for comfort and value.  This is basically my man cave on the road and my truck is my office so I want to keep both nice and having them for a long time.  Now if I could just find one that has a back wall that is a 60 inch TV and only a couch, a kitchen, a shower that will fit my 6'3 frame and a bed I am perfect.

I might upgrade my truck and trailer down the road but l tend to get and keep things for a long time and keep them nice.   Something tells me I might like living this way and the MRS might like it as well.  Just glad my kids are grown and out of the house.

spencerpj

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #21 on: August 23, 2018, 07:10:44 AM »
Thank you again, I am now looking at the lighter TT now, under 8,000 lbs.  The sales people could give a rip if I blow my truck up so thank you all for your help on this.  Saved me a huge headache down the road.  I am thankful that I did not do what my buddies tried to tell me to do and "pull the trigger".  It is nice of yall to help me.  I know I am new to this and doing my homework is paying off.  I am in a rush to find a good TT and learn the lingo.  I am going to keep watching this thread and I do value your time and opinions. 

Labor day is around the corner and I know they will be trying the hard sells and what not but I am looking for comfort and value.  This is basically my man cave on the road and my truck is my office so I want to keep both nice and having them for a long time.  Now if I could just find one that has a back wall that is a 60 inch TV and only a couch, a kitchen, a shower that will fit my 6'3 frame and a bed I am perfect.

I might upgrade my truck and trailer down the road but l tend to get and keep things for a long time and keep them nice.   Something tells me I might like living this way and the MRS might like it as well.  Just glad my kids are grown and out of the house.


Very wise man  :))  Good luck, and you will feel a whole lot better looking now as well.  Good luck

grashley

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #22 on: August 23, 2018, 06:32:11 PM »

Very wise man  :))  Good luck, and you will feel a whole lot better looking now as well.  Good luck

Ditto.  Thanks for the response!
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS  Progressive HW50C
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4   TST TMS  Garmin 760
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
It's not a dumb question if you do not know the answer.

longhaul

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #23 on: August 23, 2018, 10:31:14 PM »
Inspector....the truck has two jobs.
  They carry all the trailers hitch load ...plus the weight of the hitch plus all our necessary junk in the bed. This is the trucks RAWR job. The F150 has 5 different RAWR  from 3300 lbs up to 4800 lbs. So how much load your particular truck can carry depends on its RAWR which is found on the drivers side door post certification placard.

 And the truck has to have enough performance to pull its rated trailer  tow capacity. Keep in mind not all trailers are RVs. Pulling a 9600 gvwr car hauler with a full load is possible as we can move the load around to stay with in the trucks RAWR. Thats the reason a 9600 lb TT may have too much load for the truck to carry.

 Always look at the trailers dry weight/cargo carrying capacity/GVWR. We have some trailers with over 3k CCC. Many rv folks won't load that much into the trailer.

Bratton316

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Re: Trailer Hitch for Keystone Cougar Half-Ton
« Reply #24 on: August 24, 2018, 08:31:10 AM »
I have a F150 as well so im kinda following along and offering some advice on my shopping as well. Seems like about the only thing we can safely pull is up to about a 24'. The Grand Design ones are really nice but a little out of my price range new (about 26K). Camping world is useless they actually sold me a 5er for my 150 and before taking deliver and putting the hitch in I came here with questions and was saved tons of money and headache and didn't take delivery. Most of the floor plans I have shopped have been Rear Living or Rear kitchen. With your size you may want to look at rear bath for a bigger shower though. I would recommend looking at the camping world website to figure out what brand you like then going to a diff dealer and look at the brands you like. I've found the smaller dealer sales people to be much more willing to sell you what you can actually tow rather than their profit margin. It seems like Kodiak sells a cheaper camper and some other brand that starts with a M I believe also has a camper that's more affordable. Best of luck and interested to see what you end up buying!