Triples

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an RV or an interest in RVing!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.

dmason5913

Member
Joined
Apr 6, 2021
Posts
20
Location
Nashville, TN
So, I am trying to decide what RV is right for my first one. My requirements land me in a Class A or C diesel RV. I am torn because I want to spend most of my time in nature instead of RV parks, but I work full time remotely. As such, I have to be online with power and internet M-F. My thought was to toad (can that be used as a verb?) a Patriot X3 and a pickup truck, so I could go dry camping with a smaller footprint on the weekends. This would enable me to get to harder to reach places and I would leave the RV at a camp site and head to the boonies on the weekends in the truck.

Having said that, can you tow a truck towing a small trailer? I know semi's can do triples, but I wasn't sure about the non-commercial rules. If not, an option could be a toy hauler and stick the patriot trailer in the garage, but getting it up the ramp would be a challenge alone, so I would have to install a wench or use a come-along or something.
 

Rene T

Site Team
Joined
May 20, 2011
Posts
16,776
Location
Farmington NH
You have to check with the state you’re going to be towing in. Not all do allow it and I think the ones that do aren’t many.
 

Ex-Calif

Well-known member
Joined
May 15, 2020
Posts
1,265
You'll also have to be very careful, especially with a class C on total towing capacity...
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
72,693
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
The pick-up plus the X3 is going to run near 10,000 lbs gross. Any class C that could handle that would have to be a Super-C, based on a diesel-powered medium truck.

For what you want to do, I think that is a near-perfect though incredibly expensive solution. You just have to be careful about navigating around states that don't allow triple towing. At a mere 12 ft overall, the X3 behind the pick-up should not have much in the way of typical triple tow concerns, though.
 
Last edited:

Lou Schneider

Site Team
Joined
Mar 14, 2005
Posts
10,767
So, I am trying to decide what RV is right for my first one. My requirements land me in a Class A or C diesel RV. I am torn because I want to spend most of my time in nature instead of RV parks, but I work full time remotely. As such, I have to be online with power and internet M-F. My thought was to toad (can that be used as a verb?) a Patriot X3 and a pickup truck, so I could go dry camping with a smaller footprint on the weekends. This would enable me to get to harder to reach places and I would leave the RV at a camp site and head to the boonies on the weekends in the truck.

Having said that, can you tow a truck towing a small trailer? I know semi's can do triples, but I wasn't sure about the non-commercial rules. If not, an option could be a toy hauler and stick the patriot trailer in the garage, but getting it up the ramp would be a challenge alone, so I would have to install a wench or use a come-along or something.
Triples are towing three trailers behind the powered vehicle. You're talking about towing doubles.

Most states that allow double towing require the first trailer connect to the powered vehicle using a 5th wheel hitch. This rules out towing a trailer behind a truck behind a motorhome using a hitch that connects at the motorhome's rear bumper.
 

JudyJB

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 6, 2010
Posts
1,553
You will spend half of your time hooking up and unhooking, plus that rig would be a nightmare in most gas stations. Most of the few states that do allow them have a limit on total lengths and the kinds of vehicles you can tow.

I just take my 32' motorhome wherever I want to go and seldom have problems finding a place to camp or to park it. In small towns, if I want to pick up a pizza, I might have to park down a side street and walk a block or two, but it is a lot easier than hauling around a toad. At least for me. Also, I have an electric bike and use it in campgrounds or to go to nearby towns because I cannot walk long distances.

My advice is to keep it simple, especially when you start, and add a toad later if you find you need it. You don't have to start out with all the bells and whistles, and you certainly want to keep your life easy, not add complexity. I have talked to a couple of people with those triple tows, but they all had As, and all lived only a few miles from where they were. In other words, they had not towed that monstrosity across more than one state.
 

malexander

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 2, 2015
Posts
626
Location
Oklahoma City, OK
I have an '07 Fleetwood Bounder 38N DP, and flat tow a 2019 GMC Canyon. I've often wondered/wanted to tow my pontoon boat behind the GMC behind the MH. I'm thinking I may do it once this year, just to see how it goes. The only thing I absolutely hate about towing ANYTHING is the fact that there's just that many more tires on the ground to worry bout.
 

dmason5913

Member
Joined
Apr 6, 2021
Posts
20
Location
Nashville, TN
Yes, all very good advice on doubles (thanks for the correction). It seemed daunting when I was bouncing that around in my head as well, so this helps put that to bed. I think the only way that would work well would be if I had a toy hauler and could wench the trailer into the garage. I guess I only have one major question in follow up:
I just take my 32' motorhome wherever I want to go and seldom have problems finding a place to camp or to park it
Do you frequently dry camp on BLM or fed land? Is the weight of a big motor home that isn't 4x4 an issue in that scenario? It just seems like a scary thought because it could rain while I am asleep and I could be stuck miles off the main road. Some of that dirt will be soft too, so even if it is dry, it seems sketchy. Obviously a desert is a different thing than the forest and conditions there would present other similar challenges.
 

JudyJB

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 6, 2010
Posts
1,553
I very occasionally dry camp, and when I do, it is in a regular campground. There are several reasons for this:
  1. As someone mentioned, many of the BLM or Forest Service sites do not have good cell service, and I need cell service to get internet because I teach online and need to have about 5 hours of internet per day.
  2. I am a 77-year-old woman traveling alone, and am concerned about being isolated in a place which is not secure. This is enhanced by the fact that about 8 years ago, my college students had to research and report on a business problem. Several of them over a several year period wrote about the thefts occurring in Walmart parking lots!!
  3. I use CoachNet for my road service and highly recommend it. They have been wonderful, but I do not want to suffer the embarrassment of having to call them to tell them I am stuck somewhere and then having to describe where exactly I am stuck! (Well, it's down this road near the intersection of X and Y. Drive down about half a mile and turn left at the third cactus on your right. Then bear left at the tall pine tree.) Plus, I don't think they would go down anything but a legal road to rescue me.
What I meant is that I take my motorhome grocery shopping, to malls, to McDonalds, etc. I also have almost never found it a problem to go to national parks and museums with my big vehicle. In fact, most of the time, they have sites specifically for RVs and buses. An exception of Yellowstone during the summer. (Long story, but after a bad experience of getting stuck in a parking lot because entering cars blocked the entrance and having to round up a crew of helpers to block more cars from coming in and directing traffic so we could get out, I now rent a car there. And after that event, I drove to the nearest ranger's station and thoroughly chewed them for not staffing that large parking lot!! Also found park manager and chewed her out, as well. We older folks can get grumpy, and I was furious.)

Here is a link to something I wrote about towing a long time ago: 12/20 To Tow, or Not to Tow
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
72,693
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
Triples are towing three trailers behind the powered vehicle. You're talking about towing doubles.
There is no consensus on the terminology - the terms are used interchangeably in different places or audiences. Among RVers, triple towing is an accepted term that in fact means two vehicles in addition to the primary one.

Here is a discussion about RV's towing two or more units for a total of three, aka a triple combo.


 

dmason5913

Member
Joined
Apr 6, 2021
Posts
20
Location
Nashville, TN
I very occasionally dry camp, and when I do, it is in a regular campground. There are several reasons for this:
  1. As someone mentioned, many of the BLM or Forest Service sites do not have good cell service, and I need cell service to get internet because I teach online and need to have about 5 hours of internet per day.
  2. I am a 77-year-old woman traveling alone, and am concerned about being isolated in a place which is not secure. This is enhanced by the fact that about 8 years ago, my college students had to research and report on a business problem. Several of them over a several year period wrote about the thefts occurring in Walmart parking lots!!
  3. I use CoachNet for my road service and highly recommend it. They have been wonderful, but I do not want to suffer the embarrassment of having to call them to tell them I am stuck somewhere and then having to describe where exactly I am stuck! (Well, it's down this road near the intersection of X and Y. Drive down about half a mile and turn left at the third cactus on your right. Then bear left at the tall pine tree.) Plus, I don't think they would go down anything but a legal road to rescue me.
What I meant is that I take my motorhome grocery shopping, to malls, to McDonalds, etc. I also have almost never found it a problem to go to national parks and museums with my big vehicle. In fact, most of the time, they have sites specifically for RVs and buses. An exception of Yellowstone during the summer. (Long story, but after a bad experience of getting stuck in a parking lot because entering cars blocked the entrance and having to round up a crew of helpers to block more cars from coming in and directing traffic so we could get out, I now rent a car there. And after that event, I drove to the nearest ranger's station and thoroughly chewed them for not staffing that large parking lot!! Also found park manager and chewed her out, as well. We older folks can get grumpy, and I was furious.)

Here is a link to something I wrote about towing a long time ago: 12/20 To Tow, or Not to Tow
So, I am not into stealth camping or Wal-Mart camping as it could be illegal or dangerous. Wal-Mart is a scary place in the daytime, much less at night :)

I am not really concerned as much with personal safety as I have some self defense training and weapons training in addition to a carry permit. Having said this, I don't know if I will be able to carry in the RV and know there are states where I can't. I will have to research that some, but it's not of major concern cause I can carry knives, pepper spray and any number of other lethal and less than lethal deterrents. I am also thinking on getting a dog to bring along as well which would help.

The internet connection stability is required for me as well, because I will be working M-F. There are cellular boosters that can improve signal strength in the boonies which may work well enough. There are also wifi devices that can pool multiple hotspots into 1 wifi network, but I don't know if it is just for convenience or if there is some additional load balancing between hotspots (more techy research for me). If not, I will want something to take off in on the weekends, even if its just a truck and camper top. I love being in nature and will find a way to get a few days a week there.

I imagine some states will have more to offer than others with regards to wireless signal and park access restrictions, so I am sure there will be times where I am stuck at a campground. Not to mention weather issues because I would hate to get caught in something bad in the middle of nowhere on dirt roads.

Eventually, I will develop a list of places I can boondock on this continent legally with solid internet and then travel between those sites following the seasons. I would use the toad to fan out and explore around the area on my days off. In a perfect world, someone will have made a diesel pusher under 35 feet with a 4x4 transfer case lol, the internet boosters will work and my solar rig/generator will be enough to let me get far enough into nature to enjoy it. It won't work out all the time, but I want to give myself the best chance of working in the boonies. If I can't, I wanna be able to get there another way on weekends, besides being dropped off by an uber :)

Do you think I am asking too much from RV builders? I think they need to get with my program
There is no consensus on the terminology - the terms are used interchangeably in different places or audiences. Among RVers, triple towing is an accepted term that in fact means two vehicles in addition to the primary one.

Here is a discussion about RV's towing two or more units for a total of three, aka a triple combo.


Yaaaya, we are all right! :). Lou is correct in the commercial realm though as the definition of it was very specific in my CDL class. I used triples here because it seemed the terminology varied for RV's in my research.

Thanks for the links, I will check those out.
 

dmason5913

Member
Joined
Apr 6, 2021
Posts
20
Location
Nashville, TN
One option I haven't seen mentioned would be to just add a pop up slide-in camper to the pickup for those short term boondocking adventures.
I looked at those and they are still an option, but I have some stability concerns with that type. It would definitely have to be the right one. If, I went that route, it would be my full time RV (not a toad) because I don't need much camping ability in a toad as I already have camping gear and can rough it on weekend toad trips. As such, it would have to be pretty big slide-in to meet my needs, which means a bigger truck. At that point it's only benefit is the ability to go more places, but if internet is an issue in those places, it eliminates that place on weekdays anyway. The other issue with those, is I would have to pull a trailer full of extra tank space anyway to stay for an extended period (14 days at a time) as they seem to have small tanks.
 

dmason5913

Member
Joined
Apr 6, 2021
Posts
20
Location
Nashville, TN
I recently started looking at school busses as I do have construction experience and could strip and rebuild the interior. I could get one really cheap, but have to research the cost of materials to finish it. I am not sure how realistic it is to take on a big project like that by myself either.
 

NY_Dutch

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 22, 2010
Posts
6,488
Location
Where our wheels take us!
I looked at those and they are still an option, but I have some stability concerns with that type. It would definitely have to be the right one. If, I went that route, it would be my full time RV (not a toad) because I don't need much camping ability in a toad as I already have camping gear and can rough it on weekend toad trips. As such, it would have to be pretty big slide-in to meet my needs, which means a bigger truck. At that point it's only benefit is the ability to go more places, but if internet is an issue in those places, it eliminates that place on weekdays anyway. The other issue with those, is I would have to pull a trailer full of extra tank space anyway to stay for an extended period (14 days at a time) as they seem to have small tanks.
If you already have the camping gear, then what would you need the X3 for that the truck bed and a topper can't provide?
 

dmason5913

Member
Joined
Apr 6, 2021
Posts
20
Location
Nashville, TN
If you already have the camping gear, then what would you need the X3 for that the truck bed and a topper can't provide?
The x3 is pretty awesome, from the awning to the slide out kitchen, it has tons of features I would use and the bed is more comfortable than a hammock or tent in many situations. It would really be about versatility as well. I could carry more in the truck bed with that in tow. It also has tons of storage for its size.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
72,693
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
Do you think I am asking too much from RV builders? I think they need to get with my program
There simply aren't enough of you to make the market attractive. We often see the complaint that "all RVs look alike" and "almost all are designed for senior couples". There's a reason for that - they have to build for the mainstream buyers to be price competitive. Rigs like the Patriot X3 are fabulous, but there aren't many buyers who are willing to shell out $52k for a pop-up camper.
 

JudyJB

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 6, 2010
Posts
1,553
An internet booster boosts an internet signal that someone provides to you, like a store or restaurant or coffee shop. Except you are not going to be able to find any loose internet signals while boondocking in the wilds, no matter what state you are in. What you are going to need is a contract with a cell service provider such as Verizon, which really does have the widest network. Then you will either use the data on your cell phone or use a couple of mobile hotspots. I mention a couple because at least in my case, I get 30 gig of data at 4 G with each one before Verizon throttles me down.

If you want to boost anything, you will need a cell phone signal booster to get a better signal while you are boondocking somewhere.

I am online 5-7 hours per day, so I have two mobile hotspots which I purchased from Verizon for $200 each. I pay $148 per month for "unlimited" data, which is really not unlimited because I get 30 gig of fast speed and then unlimited really slow speed. My contract also covers unlimited cell phone calls and 20 gigs of data on my cell phone if I need it.

You can always drive into town and find a mall or someplace like McDonalds or Starbucks that provides free internet and use an internet booster for that. I do have an internet booster that I used to use for that, but now use only occasionally when I am at a campground that provides free internet. However, be aware that for 95% of commercial campgrounds, free internet means you have to be sitting next to the activity center or directly under the wireless access point. IN other words, it is almost always useless.

You can check into satellite internet, however. Not sure what that provides or what it will cost you, but obviously you will need to buy a satellite dish and some other equipment. (Providers make you purchase a satellite for RVs, as opposed to with home use where they bring you a satellite and let you rent it.)
 
Top Bottom