Jayco RV Owners Forum
 


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 07-05-2016, 06:58 AM   #1
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Northeast Ohio
Posts: 86
HT Fifth Wheel Opinions

Couple of questions on the smaller, lighter HT FWs. Wife and I are considering one for our next purchase in a few years, upgrading from a PUP directly to our empty nest / early retirement version. Three oldest girls (currently 18, 22, 23) no longer come with us, but if they did, they can bring along the PUP. Youngest (8) might bring a friend/cousin and sleep on the pullout sofa. So, we like the Rear Living versions since we plan keeping our PUP (still in very good shape) as our "bunkhouse".

We like the 27.5RLTS and the 28.5RSTS, NOT because they're (supposedly) "half-ton towable" but because we don't feel like we need anything bigger.

Questions:

1. Should we just assume we need a 3/4T truck? Specs are 10,000 GVWR and 1400-1500 hitch. I'm thinking the HT (half-ton) is an exaggeration at least for any 1/2T on a lot.

2. More importantly, are the HT's made cheaply to keep weight down (relative to other FWs)? We see this is a long-term investment, not a throw-away, and don't want to sacrifice quality for weight. Put another way, is the HT Eagle line just smaller than the Eagle line but with the same quality.

Goal is to purchase in 2-5 years and keep for at least 10.
__________________

raising4daughters is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2016, 07:36 AM   #2
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Fort Wayne
Posts: 77
HT

We just made our purchase this past april, ours is the HT RSTS, The quality for the 2 of us is great, Maybe we got luckey lol, Lots of storage. Great for 2 people and room for 2 guests. I pull with a Ford F 250, It barely droped the rear about 1 1/2 Inches. Its a gaser but so far have not had a problem. Loaded with fuel wood and just about the whole house(she over packs) my GCW was 14580, IMO I think its a bit much for a Half ton, for safety and for the life of the truck.
__________________

sobuck1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2016, 09:23 AM   #3
tld
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Manhattan ks
Posts: 50
My wife and I bought a new Eagle HT 27.5 RLTS (3 slides and about 30.5 ft in length) in November of 2015 (it was a 2016 model). We live in Kansas and spent the winter traveling in South Texas. And this summer have gone north into the Black Hills of South Dakota and over into Wyoming to try to beat some of the Central Plains heat. So, we've put about 3500 miles of towing on our Eagle HT so far and have lived aboard our rig for a total of about 3 months, with the longest continuous stretch of living onboard 2 months. After a lot of research about which towing vehicle to buy, I purchased a 3/4 ton Ford F250 6.7 Diesel 4X4 (2015 model).

So, that's my up-to-this-date experiential background. Now I'll try to address your questions and maybe throw in some other things that I've learned or encountered.

1. So, the big question is, is the HT more cheaply made? I could be wrong, and if I am, I know someone will justifiably correct me. But, we looked extensively at the Eagle and the Eagle HT and I've got to tell you that the materials used, and workmanship, seemed to be identical in both models. The only difference seemed to be size and the extra "things" that came with the Eagle. If you get on Jayco's site, construction specs appear to be the same - vacuum-bonded walls, welded aluminum frame, added insulation, etc. My wife was a little concerned that the size might be a little tight for us (we also travel with our 40lb dog). On the other hand, I wanted to stay reasonably small for towing, backing and getting into tighter State and National Park campground sites when not staying at an RV Park. But I've got to tell you that with 3 slide, the living space in our HT is more than adequate. And even though our rig is wired for 50 amps and the vent in the bedroom is pre-wired to drop in a second A/C, my one 15K A/C has done great even when the temps are in the middle to upper 90's. However, if our rig was much bigger, I would for sure want the second A/C unit for summer travel. A smaller 13.5K A/C would be more than adequate for the second A/C. I guess that what I'm really thinking is that if I was doing it over, I would probably go ahead and get the second A/C as part of the original purchase. But if you found what you wanted and the price was right, don't be scared of getting an HT with only one 15K A/C.

And here is something to be aware of regarding the HT. The HT's have an adjustable axel height. The frame can be raised an additional two inches higher than the height it comes out from the factory. So why is this important? If you buy a 3/4 ton 4x4 tow truck (and I definitely recommend going with a 4x4), you will discover that the HT will set nose high at the lower axel setting (even with your hitch in the truck bed set at the lowest level) because the 3/4 ton 4x4 will setup higher than a 4x4 1/2 ton. The trailer should, of course, set level while towing - or at least close to level. Otherwise you may get extra tire ware and you will probably damage your refrigerator if you want to run it while traveling. So, be sure to include a clause in your sales agreement that will require the dealer to make the adjustment to the axel height if necessary. It took 3 workers about two hours to make the change on my rig. Fortunately I had been aware of the issue and had it covered in the sales agreement.

2. When I was trying to decide between a 1/2 ton and 3/4 ton towing vehicle, so many others who were already experienced fifth wheelers said that even for the HT, don't go 1/2 ton. My personal experience has been that those that said go with the 3/4 ton were right. Some 1/2 tons might safely pull the HT as long as you didn't put much in the 5th wheel or the truck. But, the more we travel with our rig, the more stuff we find ourselves wanting to take along. And, if you want to travel through or over any mountains, I think the 3/4 ton becomes a must ( I totally love my exhaust brake for going down the mountains). And what about gas vs diesel 3/4 ton? You will get better power with a diesel - hands down! Diesel engines will last far longer than gas engines. But they are more expensive to repair and maintain. Diesel fuel will usually cost a little more than regular gas (although for about a month this spring, diesel was cheaper than gas in my area). But with diesel you will get better gas mileage while towing. With my Ford F250 6.7 diesel I get 23 mph on the highway unloaded and 13 mph towing. Most owners of 3/4 ton gasers that I have talked with get about 9 mph when towing and about 15 on the highway unloaded.

So, I hope that something that I've talked about is of some help. Good luck.
tld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2016, 02:38 PM   #4
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Neosho
Posts: 56
In the order they were asked;

1. Yes, go with a 3/4 ton if you intend to travel with it much at all. Even the lightest/smallest models are marginal at best in the real world for even a modded 1/2 ton.

2. No, as stated above construction is very close to the same. Mostly they are smaller in length with the HT line topping out at 35' OAL and the Eagle line going from about 38' and up. Get the 16" wheel and E rated tire upgrade!
Krusegroup is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2016, 05:48 PM   #5
Junior Member
 
AC Gypsy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Pacific Northwet
Posts: 4
Hello raising4daughters, Having just picked up my 2016 HT 27.5RLTS in May the advice I've seen here so far is spot-on. Sobucks advise about pinbox height is something to keep in mind. I raised the pin box up one hole and adjusted the axle (leaf-springs actually) and still ride with about 4 inches difference. Still have a couple of options; Add the Correct-Trac II which will raise the frame another 2 inches or lower the back end of the TV.
Another thing too consider is how will you use your rv. Short or extended trips, or full-timing?
The HT is perfect (IMHO), for short-term use, but it is not built for full-timing (states that somewhere in the users manual also.)
We had a lot of fun searching for the right rv and after a 2K mile, 3 week break-in ride home, believe we choose the perfect one for our current needs.
Good luck in your endeavor!
__________________
John
Granite Falls, WA
2016 Eagle HT 27.5RLTS
2007 Chev Silverado 2500HD Duramax 6.6 LTZ Ext Cab
AC Gypsy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2016, 07:15 AM   #6
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Northeast Ohio
Posts: 86
All - thanks so much for the valuable feedback!

I wanted to follow-up AC Gypsy's point (below). If "full-timing" means selling our primary home and living exclusively in the FW, that's not our plan. At the same time, our plan WOULD be to use it a helluva lot more than the 1-3 weeks per year we use our PUP. Frankly, we would not own a PUP had we not fallen into it. Just don't have enough spare time with kids activities now even though they're getting older.

Longer-term, we'd like to, for example, drive to the south or southwest after Christmas and stay there for 2-3 months. Then, once the summer months hit, we envision hitting the west shore of Lake Michigan for a month.

Any reasons the 27.5HT RLTS or 28.5RSTS wouldn't suffice for that plan? I don't think that qualifies as "full-timing", does it?




Quote:
Originally Posted by AC Gypsy View Post
Another thing too consider is how will you use your rv. Short or extended trips, or full-timing?
The HT is perfect (IMHO), for short-term use, but it is not built for full-timing (states that somewhere in the users manual also.)
raising4daughters is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2016, 07:39 AM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Fort Wayne
Posts: 77
They put that in the book to cover their butts. I could live in mine full time if I had to with no problem. some NY apartments are smaller. It should serve you well for your intenions
sobuck1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2016, 08:16 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
troutslayer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: NW AR (God's Country)
Posts: 1,726
Quote:
Originally Posted by raising4daughters View Post
Any reasons the 27.5HT RLTS or 28.5RSTS wouldn't suffice for that plan? I don't think that qualifies as "full-timing", does it?
I use mine 3 to 5 months per year either working for Habitat or just traveling. It's held up well however, the material and "appliances" are certainly not of the residential quality. With my use, I fully intend to replace certain items before my 10th year anniversary.
__________________
Skip

2012 Eagle Super Lite HT 26.5RKS
2005 GMC 2500 SLT HD D/A
troutslayer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2016, 08:24 AM   #9
tld
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Manhattan ks
Posts: 50
I agree with sobuck1. Last winter we lived in our 27.5HT RLTS for 2 continuous months straight while doing exactly what your talking about doing. There is no question that it will work for what you would like to do. We could live full-time in ours with no problem. But here's the rub regarding full-time use, or extended part-time use. None of the fifth wheel or travel trailer rigs are built with construction grade materials like your house is nor to any type of residential construction/building code (the more expensive larger rigs may use better grade materials). They can't be because they would simply be too heavy. Plus, those heavier materials couldn't survive the magnitude 4 and 5 earthquake levels that they would be subjected to when encountering rough highways at 65mph. So, any of the materials used in these rigs are not as user durable as the materials used in your house, and using them, full or part-time, will simply wear things out faster.
tld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2016, 08:36 AM   #10
Member
 
FoxFanRay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Raleigh
Posts: 52
While sitting around at my dealer waiting for some minor issue repair, I found a bunch of wall samples (6" x 6") laying on a table. IF I remember correctly, the HT walls are not quite as thick as the Eagle's walls. Will that make any difference to you? I doubt it unless you are going to extreme temp environments. The Northpoint walls are also thicker than the Eagle's by quite a bit. You might ask the dealer if he has samples. Also, the frame members may be larger on the Eagle. The weight being saved on the HT comes from somewhere! Just some things to keep in mind if you are going to keep the unit long term.

(I'm not knocking the HT, just pointing out there are some differences.)
__________________

__________________
2015 Jayco Eagle 33.5 RETS
2013 Ford F-250 6.7 PSD Lariat SCREW
FoxFanRay is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Virginia State Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:02 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2002-2016 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.