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Old 02-27-2011, 01:39 PM   #1
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Never Trust a TT Salesman?

I have read never trust a salesman several times on this forum. Looking for some "REAL" advice. I have a quadcab Dodge Dakota with tow package 4.7 L HO V8. Max towing capacity is rated at 7150#. I am very skeptical of that number. I pull a 3800 # boat with absolutely no problems. I was looking at getting a TT around 4000#. Salesman is trying to get me to buy a 26BH that is 4700# dry. I'm guessing that after I load all my crap (I mean gear) I will add 800 - 1000# and will be approaching 5700# with my little quadcab Dakota. I'm a little timid. I plan on using load distribution bars, and sway control. What are your thoughts on this? Tell the salesman to shove it? Is this doable? Any help is greatly appreciated! Help!!!!

Thanks, - John

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Old 02-27-2011, 01:46 PM   #2
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Welcome to the Jayco Owners Forum John! Yup, pretty much when a salesperson says your tv can tow something base on dry weight of the tt, run for the hills. Others here will share their real advice. Lotsa great help here

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Old 02-27-2011, 06:43 PM   #3
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I wouldn't hesitate to pull 6k lbs with that setup. You're wheelbase is decent (longer than most SUVs), and with a V8, you shouldn't have a problem pulling it. Make sure to get a good brake controller and that will take care of the stopping part. Just make sure you get a good WD/sway control hitch. I would look closely at the Reese Dual Cam. It's a good setup that won't break the bank.

What it really comes down to is whether or not you like the 26BH. If you're happy with the smaller trailer, then go that route. If, however, you really like the 26BH, I don't think you're Dakota will have any problems towing it.

One more thing to consider.... once you buy a camper, you usually wish that you would have gone two feet bigger (know as two-foot-itis in the boating world). If you do get the smaller trailer, you'll see just how well the Dodge pulls it, and may be wishing you'd have gone bigger.
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Old 02-27-2011, 06:51 PM   #4
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Well John nobody`s chiming in, I`ll take a crack at this one. There is an unwritten mythical rule some RVers use which says that the weight of the loaded trailer should not exceed 80% of the trucks tow rating. This gives a margin for wind resistance due to the high profile of the trailer and other variables you may encounter. The GVWR on that TT is 7500 lbs, not saying you would ever go that heavy. Your estimates say you will keep your loaded weight below 6000lbs. You may be alright there. The next issue is tongue weight and payload. What is the payload of your truck? Payload is the GVWR of the truck minus actual weight of the truck. The tongue weight on that trailer is 600 lbs dry and empty. It will be higher when loaded and ready. Passengers and any gear in or options installed on the truck also add to the payload. So you could exceed payload or rear axle rating. I find the tongue weight and marginal suspension on my truck to be more of a concern then the tow rating, which I am well below on mine. I also do not know the wheel base on your truck. Generally the longer the wheel base the more stable the towing platform. You may have better luck posting this question on a Dakota forum to get actual advice from Dakota owners. I really can`t say one way or the other what you should pull, just offer these tidbits to mull over. Good luck, Lee

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Old 02-27-2011, 07:06 PM   #5
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John - I have a 26BH that I tow with a Chevy 1500 5.3 v8. It is rated just over 7,000 and it pulls fantastic. Now I am in the middle of the country and dont have any big hills - I dont know where you are, but I would not be scared off just yet.

Yes -- I have a "high school buddy" RV salesmen that told me I should get a big old 5th wheel with a slider hitch for my 1500...not....

I think with a proper WD hitch, sway system and good brake controller, you might be ok. You are not going to win any race, and you may go slow up some hills - but the 26BH is one of the lightest and easiest to pull Jayco pull behinds for its size in my opinion.
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Old 02-27-2011, 07:37 PM   #6
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What you need is a good class on how to figure out all this weight stuff and an explanation of what all the terms mean (like GVW, GVWR, etc)

I strongly recommend visiting the site below for a complete explanation on how to figure out whether the tow vehicle and trailer you plan to "marry" will be a happy one or a disaster waiting to happen.

Take lots of coffee, Coke, Monster or whatever your favorite drink is with you when you go as there is a lot of material that will be covered. Plan to be at this site for awhile.

When you return back here, I'm confident that you will have the knowledge to determine if the trailer you're planning to purchase will put you, your passengers and other innocent people at risk every time you hook it up and drive off into the sunset (so to speak).

RV and Tow Vehicle Weights
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Old 02-27-2011, 09:32 PM   #7
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IMO, a loaded trailer (with no water in its hlding tanks) can have 800-1,500 (use average 1,200 lbs) more lbs - above its dry weight numbers This additional weight is from dishes, AC unit, loaded LP tanks, tools, blocks, etc. etc. It all adds up. Even for the average family.

I'm also a big fan of the 80% rule as well. re: Always stay under 80% of the vehicle's MAX towing weight. This 20% buffer is for extra strong head wind, going up steep hills, stop/go traffic and/or a combination at the same time.

If wondering, I "use to" tow at my Tow Vehicle's max weight limit. Legally, I can do that. One day, after a long trip, the transmission blows - while pulling away from a stop light (and NO trailer connected). Luckily, I limped home on 2 gears. It needed a $1,200 rebuild kit. My transmission guy said its internals was "over stressed" and it couldn't take it anymore. Thus, expensive rebuild. From that day forward, I've been a huge fan of under 80% max weight numbers as well...

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Old 02-27-2011, 09:42 PM   #8
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I don't know where you are planning on towing the trailer or even how far or how often. As long as you are not exceeding your trucks capability you should be ok. A 4.7 isn't the strongest engine for towing but if you are not in the mountains you should be good. Use tow haul and keep it out of overdrive.
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Old 03-01-2011, 06:07 PM   #9
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Hey everyone...thanks for the information. This helps and educates me. I am not sure what I am going to do, but now I know that I can make a better decision.


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Old 03-10-2011, 01:29 PM   #10
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I made a REAL rookie mistake when I went shopping for my first TT. I told the salesman that I wanted a trailer that I could pull with my Ford Explorer Limited and he told me that I could safely pull a Jayco 29" BHS that he had a great deal on. I had been pricing Jaycos and knew it was a great deal so I bought it. When I got home I found out (with a bit of research) that the rig was WAY to heavy and we would most likey die (and possibley kill others) if we tried to pull it with the Explorer. (I didn't take the trailer home the day I bought it thankfully.) I wound up finding a great used 2004 Silverado 2500HD long bed which I bought to pull the trailer with. Though it cost me more I am very pleased with what I wound up with. The Chevy pulls the Jayco very well and the trailer is big enough that we get to have our kids and grand children camp with us. Even though the salesman was dishonest, in the end it all worked out for the best. You are very smart to question what a salesman tells you BEFORE you buy. If I ever replace the Jayco I will walk away if I even suspect a salesman is lying to me, but only after I report his unethical behavior to his boss.

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