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Old 11-17-2014, 04:49 PM   #1
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4wd TV or 2wd TV?

Hi everyone. Just came back from Hershey PA RV show and decided after looking at all the 5th wheels there that a Jayco Pinnacle 36KPTS is the 5er for us. Here's my question, 4wd, or 2wd 1 ton DRW diesel truck?

We've got a bit of experience RVing, as we full time RV'd with DW, 4 kids and two dogs from 2006-2008 after I Retired form the Army. We homeschooled our kids (two now graduated from college, one a college senior and one a freshman this year) and called our trip our American History Tour. For the trip our TV was a Volvo 770 (single axel and registered as an RV), and a 44DBS Travel Supreme 5th wheel. Prior to getting the Volvo we had a Ford F350 CC DRW diesel, 2wd. I'm also well versed in the mods that can be done to trucks, calculating "safe" towing weights etc. My question revolves around is there a "need" for a 4wd tow vehicle vs. a 2wd tow vehicle?

We plan on making several trips to AK, so 4wd seems to be a good option. Then again, when pulling a big 5er there is plenty of weight on the rear wheels so why pay the extra for a 4wd?

I had one experience with the Ford F350 when trying to hook up my TS on a grass parking area. It rained the night before and, yep the 2wd truck had trouble (I got it hooked up) on the slick grass = spun a lot.

There is also the question of Chevy vs. Ford, but I'll leave that for another time. I'm not a fan of either, just want to get the truck that fits us the best, and can pull the 5er we purchase.

Thanks for all your insight, I'll sit back and read what you all have opine on this.

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Old 11-17-2014, 05:29 PM   #2
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. Welcome to the forum. I have 2WD on both my trucks but a different situation. Pulling that Pinnacle to Alaska and many other places I would want 4WD.


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Old 11-17-2014, 05:30 PM   #3
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Sounds like you answered your own question as to 2wd or 4wd. I personally thank dodge has the best diesel-hands down. My kenworth has a cummins so I think they have that part figured out quite well. Good luck with your choice
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Old 11-17-2014, 08:04 PM   #4
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I just stored my TT for the winter and the day before I pulled it to its winter spot it had rained. The lot was quite slick and I started to spin the tires while backing the TT into its spot. I locked the rear dif but that did not help much. I ended up utilizing 4X4 which saved the day. I had a 2 wheeel drive truck once and swore I would never buy another.
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Old 11-17-2014, 08:30 PM   #5
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The only reason I have a 4x4 is for winter driving if I run into any heavy snow or icy roads, so unless you plan on towing on snowy roads I don't see the point. If you use 4 wheel on dry roads, esp. pavement, your tires won't last long.

All this being said I wouldn't own a truck that doesn't have 4 wheel drive, it's just to darn nice when you do need it.
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Old 11-17-2014, 09:20 PM   #6
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Just my opinion but if the road conditions were such that I needed 4wd, I wouldn't be on the road. Logic dictates that if you need 4wd to move forward then you'll also need help steering and stopping, both characteristics I'd like to maintain.

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Old 11-17-2014, 10:20 PM   #7
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Location: Reno (home base), Oregon coast, Eloy, AZ
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First of all thanks for your service and welcome.

Since we have the same rig you are looking at and you have a choice of vehicles we are so glad to have a 4WD dually to pull.

There have been many occasions if we didn't have the 4WD we would have been spinning our wheels and wondering what to do. I'm not talking about driving down the hwy in ice and snow but backing or pulling out of places that were greasy, uphill/downhill or on soft roads getting to a place that was off the beaten path.

You are picking a nice rig...now get the 4WD TV that will give you the confidence in your travels to enjoy to the utmost w/o worrying...I should have got the 4WD.

Good luck with your decision and safe travels.

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Old 11-18-2014, 03:09 AM   #8
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Last February I had to use 4WD to drive the first 30 or 40 miles out of my house to get down to Florida for my (almost) yearly trip to Florida. Without 4WD I would have been stuck in 8" or 10" of snow for most of those 2 weeks rather than sitting out on Tampa Bay and kayaking...

Let me tell you, that 4WD would have been a deal at TWICE the price last winter!

It all depends upon how and where you tow and drive. If you are one of those guys that follows a strict timeline and you have to leave on Thursday by 0900 hours whether its wet or dry then a 4WD might be useful. If you can look out your window and see it looks nasty and hunker down for 2 more days until it dries out then a 2WD might be better suited. If you load up the trailer and leave town because you hear about an upcoming snow storm, maybe you want that 2WD. If you live up north and decide you are done with snow by January and want to go somewhere warm, maybe a 4WD would be helpful.
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Old 11-18-2014, 05:19 AM   #9
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While picking up my daughter from a friends house, their driveway had leaves and was damp. I had to back up an incline to the street and because a diesel is heavy in the front and light in the back, the rear wheels just spun. I needed 4wd just to get out of the driveway!

I'm sure a dually would have been a little better, but I would always opt for 4wd.
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Old 11-18-2014, 05:58 AM   #10
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