Just Starting Reserach...Double Axles?

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TenneseeWannabe

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Nov 24, 2018
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Hi Friends We are just starting to research this world! Maybe a couple of years out from spending 3-6 month trips OTR in semi-retirement. Right now we think we want to stay under23 feet Travel Trailer.Will probably a tow vehicle (truck) after selecting TT.
We are seeing double and single axles....is the double axle really an advantage, e.g., for sway control or safety in case of rapid air loss? What is the disadvantage of double axle on this size trailer?

Also is there a link on this forum to simply explain hitch systems and tongue weight?

Thanks and love the discussions we have been seeing.
 

Gizmo100

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welcome to the forum TenneseeWannabe

Since you said "we" I will assume at least 2 people will be sharing the space. That said...

You are going to need enough space for 2 people and all the stuff they will want with them when traveling. It's my opinion that a single axle TT will not offer that space or weight capacity.

Remember you will have days when it raining and your stuck inside for the day. You don't want to be tripping over each other.
We have a 24 Ft and it's a little tight.

I highly recommend a weight distributing hitch with anti sway built in. I use the husky in-line system. It works for me but I'm sure other will have their own recommendation. Don't buy one until you have your trailer and truck.
 

IBTripping

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Gotta agree with Gizmo100. I've got a no slide-out 24 ft travel trailer (TT) which works for gf, me, and our 80 lb dog, but only because we have such great personalities.  ::) But, it is a bit cramped. Seriously, consider how cramped you'd both feel if you have to spend several days inside a very small space because of rotten weather. I looked at a 20 ft TT first and realized how cramped it would be even with just the dog and me. As far as towing, there's not much difference in driving between a 20 ft and a 25 ft as long as you've got the right tow vehicle (TV). However, there are couples who are fine in a small TT. Just be aware how confining a small TT can be.
 

Prior member

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Get one with a double axle.
Get a blow out and you'll never even know it with a double until you look in the mirror and see rubber flying down the road behind you , (from experience !). Then you'll be still able to tow it to a safe place
With a single, you'll be all over the road trying to keep  the trailer under control

Jack L
 

Gizmo

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Double axle allows for a greater load carrying capacity, as mentioned  in the event of a flat tire or blow out the trailer will be easier to control until you are able to get it safely off the road.
 

PancakeBill

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Axles have ratings, most in the TT word are 6 or 7000 lbs.  The number of axles will depend on the total weight rating is for the trailer.  Size matters.  Long trips in short trailers become longer (felt) trips.  When I was on the sales end of RV's I would see it happen often, couple buys xx for trailer because we don't want anything bigger come back to trade bigger.  Had one customer had a 42' motorhome and didn't need anything that big anymore, traded for about a 28' class C, was back in less than 2 months to trade for a 35' class A.

Find layout you like and stay in it an afternoon.
 

donn

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They are more commonly called TANDEM AXLE trailers.
There are so many reasons your logic can be flawed.  Starting with sleeping, moving to closet spwce and storage and ending with room to live comfortably for extended times.  I think you need to go pick a small RV and play house in it for a half hour.  Bathe, fix a meal, store clothes, sleep?  While making up the couch each night might be OK for a weekend, guaranteed you will want a comfortable permanent bed for longer than a week.  Picking a trailer first is a good idea, but again, dont make the same mistake most first timers do.  Do not look at brochure advertised weights.  Instead find a trailers GVWR and match a tow vehicle to that.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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Usually the trailer will be substantially under 23 ft if it has only a single axle. Tandem axles are usually better balanced (a single axle is essentially a teeter-totter) and track a bit better (more stability). They also spread the weight load over 4 tires instead of just 2, meaning smaller size tires (less expensive!).

Axles come in various weight ratings and trailer axles up to about 6000 lbs are common, so you could have a moderately large single axle trailer. Few RV builders do that, though, so you will usually find tandem axles on RVs over 3000 lbs or so.
 

Memtb

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Gizmo said:
Double axle allows for a greater load carrying capacity, as mentioned  in the event of a flat tire or blow out the trailer will be easier to control until you are able to get it safely off the road.


  And, ?if? you experience a wheel bearing or similar failure, and you are in a remote area....you can elevate the damaged axle stub, support it to the frame, using a small chain or ratchet strap. This will allow you to travel to a town or a safe place to park, until proper repairs can be made. It happened to us once, nearing dark, temperature at near zero and falling, Christmas Holidays, and destination 70 miles away. We reached our destination, enjoyed Christmas with family....I repaired the problem while at the campground!
 

Rene T

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JackL said:
Get one with a double axle.
Get a blow out and you'll never even know it with a double until you look in the mirror and see rubber flying down the road behind you , (from experience !).

Good time to mention getting a tire/pressure warning system. It's saved my butt twice. I knew the tires were going flat before they had time to tear apart and destroy my trailer
 

Lou Schneider

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Tandem axle trailers will tend to float more over bumps and potholes compared to single axles.  In effect, the trailer is suspended midway between the axles and as each one hits the bump, the trailer only deflects half as much as it would with a single axle.
 

Hanr3

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Central Illinois
TenneseeWannabe said:
Hi Friends We are just starting to research this world! Maybe a couple of years out from spending 3-6 month trips OTR in semi-retirement. Right now we think we want to stay under23 feet Travel Trailer.Will probably a tow vehicle (truck) after selecting TT.
We are seeing double and single axles....is the double axle really an advantage, e.g., for sway control or safety in case of rapid air loss? What is the disadvantage of double axle on this size trailer?

Also is there a link on this forum to simply explain hitch systems and tongue weight?

Thanks and love the discussions we have been seeing.

Might I suggest figuring out how much space you need for each room/activity and then figure out the size of the camper. We all have differing space requirements. Some may need that 42' trailer, while others can get by using a teardrop, or just a 2 man backpack tent. I've seen the world from a tent, but my wife has other requirements. She wants hot showers, flush toilets, and a place to do her hair and makeup. I want to tow the boat. So we compromised and bought a 5th wheel. We buy what suits our needs. First step is figuring out what those needs are? Go tothe local RV shows, walk thru the campers, site, socialize, visit, work the space like suggested above. Try it out in several sizes and get an idea.

Couple of questions to think about.
Do you need a bathroom in the camper? Toilet only, shower, bathtub?
Does the bedroom have to be seperate from the living room? Permanent wall/door or sliding curtain? What about a half wall? Murphy bed?
Will there be others staying with you occasionally? Privacy concerns?
Food- are you take out types or chefs, or somewhere in between? What appliances do you need in the kitchen? Do you need an outside kitchen? How much food do you need to store for a week? How much freezer space?
How often will you go into "town" for entertainment, groceries, etc.?
Planning on boondocking?

The idea is to get you thinking about how you live your lives now, and what (if anything) you will compromise in the camper?
Then start to look at camper layouts, options, features, etc.

 

SarniaTricia

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Aug 15, 2018
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Amherstburg, Ontario
Everyone has given you great advice...
I see you have a couple of months..... May I suggest renting an RV.
We have a couple of places in my area were they will also setup at a camp ground and remove it after; this way you don't need to invest in a Tow Vehicle yet.

I have pulled an old single axle 18ft 1984 travel trailer and it was always making me aware it was there... built like a toaster and had all of the aerodynamics of one... towed with an astro van (also toaster shaped)

The astro van is out and I have found an older 1500 pick-up; just in time for my husband to gift me with a 2017 Jayco Flight 21ft trailer.... they are almost the same weight (1,000lb difference) ... and my Weight Distribution Hitch and sway bar can be used for this RIG too....
(floor plans are great to look at, but I changed my mind on ours after being inside of the trailer.... I liked the couch and dinette beside each other!.... something I didn't think I liked before being inside two trailers with different layouts)

Happy Hunting.
RV show, booking an appointment at dealerships and talking to people at RV parks are great ways to "shop" for a new RV....
 

TenneseeWannabe

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Nov 24, 2018
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Location
Nashville
Thanks everyone! Appreciate your time, these are great questions. We are definitely thinking tandem axle  ;) and we want to stay a wee bit shorter. We are simple people with a LOT of camping and backpacking experience.....we just want that bed now and little more elbow room.

We have only visited  two dealers so far but are looking forward to shows and more dealer visits.

Gonna investigate how to go about testing out a TT but it does seem easier to rent a class C.
The nearby dealer we visited recently no longer rents >anything< because we are so close to Bonnaroo ha!

See ya soon with more questions.
 
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