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Old 12-28-2019, 01:32 PM   #1
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Vehicle for pulling

Just purchased our first Octance 161 Toy Hauler. Super excited to camp in the spring. We have a Tahoe V8 with Tow package. Is this sufficient for pulling this size camper?
or Should we buy something bigger? It seemed to pull it okay- however it was empty. Don't want to kill our expensive car. Need advise.

Thanks
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Old 12-28-2019, 03:47 PM   #2
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I don't have either one but I would suggest you compare the maximum allowable weight with the max towing weight of the Tahoe. Also the same for the hitch weight.



If you are above 75% on either one I would look for a new puller. I like leeway for both the gradual age reduction of your vehicle safe towing capacity and the possible (likely?) understatement of the real world weights you will deal with.
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Old 12-28-2019, 04:39 PM   #3
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I'm surprised you haven't received more responses. Holidays? Or, because this gets asked so much on this forum?

Suggest you search on this, but for now...

Never mind what the vehicle maker says it's rated to tow. What you REALLY need to know is the tow vehicle's PAYLOAD. In other words, what can it carry. From that number, subtract the weight of all the people, pets, coolers, tents, etc. that will be in the tow vehicle. Then, subtract the tongue weight of the trailer. One way to establish the tongue weight is to weigh it. The easier way is to take the weight of the LOADED trailer and multiply it by 13%. Subtract that number from the payload.

You must not exceed the payload of the vehicle. Check the door jamb for the payload of the vehicle. Or, wherever it's given on your vehicle. It has to be for your specific vehicle, not the figure you might find for your model of vehicle found somewhere online.

If you aren't exceeding the payload of the vehicle, then you can check to see if you're exceeding the maker's rated tow capacity. That number must not be exceeded, either. In general, you come up against the payload number before you get anywhere near the rated towing number.

Just remember, payload, payload, payload.
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Old 12-28-2019, 05:01 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ktm200 View Post
snip..... We have a Tahoe V8 with Tow package. Is this sufficient for pulling this size camper? or Should we buy something bigger?....snip
Ktm200,

Welcome to JOF

Everyone's TV/TH loading habits will very which can influence one's towing expectations.

A CAT scale visit ($9 & 3 minutes) will confirm your Tahoe's actual 'available' payload capacity under loaded conditions (full fuel, passengers, and cargo). Subtract the CAT scale gross weight from your TV's specified GVWR, and subtract the CAT scale rear axle weight from the TV's specified rear GAWR.

The 2020 Octane 161 has a 7,500lb GVWR, and a 4,800lb UVW to 5,100lb UVW range (based on 'as-shipped' yellow sticker sampling) depending on final configuration.

An ideal "loaded" TH tongue weight would be 13% to 15% of the TH's loaded gross weight. Since we don't have an actual loaded Octane 161 gross weight under "your" loaded conditions..., let's assume a worst case scenario:

Octane 161 loaded @ 7,500lbs (GVWR), loaded tongue weight = 975lbs (13%) to 1,125lbs (15%) range. Compare this "worst case" loaded tongue weight range with your Tahoe's CAT scale comparison results. This should give you an indication of your Tahoe's capabilities and weight limits (worst case). The TH's loaded tongue weight gets subtracted from your TV's "actual available" payload capacity.

Also, IMO a 1,200lb rated WDH should be ideal for the Octane 161 and not an overkill for lower loaded tongue weights. Like any WDH, proper adjustment is important. A lower rated WDH would work, but one would have to insure not to exceed the lower rating.

Just food for thought.

Bob
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Old 12-28-2019, 05:25 PM   #5
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Thatís what nice about a 161 is I pull mine with a GMC Canyon, it would be nice to have a bigger engine but Iím not in no super hurry to get there.
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Old 12-31-2019, 01:15 AM   #6
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Old 12-31-2019, 09:23 AM   #7
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This question in one form or another comes up two or three times a week. There are numerous threads on it, in fact there is another running in the same list of current threads.

The problem with this is you will a whole bunch of "expert" opinions so rather than trusting what get as "advice" here, and some of it is very good, search the Web and us one or several of the various sites that use your data to give you an accurate answer.

Here is a start:
https://rv.campingworld.com/towguide
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Old 12-31-2019, 11:09 AM   #8
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Follow Bob's guidance (Rustic Eagle) to find out your true capacities. It's worth the time and effort.

FWIW, our Tahoe says 1588 lbs available payload on the sticker. That doesn't include passengers or gear in the truck. I figure for us that is easily 4-500 lbs. So, that's roughly 1,000-1,100 lbs left for tongue weight. With a worst case tongue weight of 1125 (15% of trailer GVWR) for the 161, that's not a lot of wiggle room.

First thing I would do is load up whatever you'll normally carry in the truck (people, full tank of fuel, whatever gear you plan to carry) and weigh the truck. Subtract that scale number from the Tahoe's GVWR and that's what you have left for a hitch and trailer tongue weight. You'll run out of payload before you hit the "towing capacity" as stated in the OEM guides.

Again, do your own research, collect your own weights for your own gear. No one's situation will be just like yours, so you're the only one who can accurately answer your question.
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Old 01-06-2020, 02:53 PM   #9
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Trust me, I'm an expert... LOL,,,,,do what i did, get the biggest baddest diesel truck you can afford, then later if you change trailers, you will not have to change tow vehicles.
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Old 01-06-2020, 03:10 PM   #10
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For the past 30 some years I have always had "more" truck than trailer, except for a couple of years when I had a truck trailer combination that was "within" spec. I subsequently went back to having "more" truck.
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Old 01-18-2020, 01:11 PM   #11
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Yeah, since 3/4 ton pickups can be had for a song compared to 1/2 tons and the SUV stuff, I believe in the more truck than required thing myself. Far more capability and a much better bang for the buck. A 3/4 ton with many of the same features and 2-3 times the payload and towing capacity... standard... is far less cost than any 1/2 ton that tries to be a max tow whatever but never seems to make it. With a standard 3/4 ton, Can throw in a family, the dogs, a lot of accessory gear, full of fuel and still have more than ample payload to handle a fully loaded 161 toy hauler with ease.

And the OEM's finally stepped up on the gasser versions. The new 6.6L gasser (standard) in the GM 3/4 tons is pretty good. And Ford really got back into the game with the optional 7.3 gasser. These are far less cost than a diesel to buy and operate and more than ample power for most folks.

I have seen brand new Chevy 2500 crewcabs with 6.5' box, 4x4 with the 6.6L gasser going off the lot for under $40K.
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Old 01-18-2020, 01:46 PM   #12
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Trailer life tow guide
http://www.trailerlife.com/trailer-t...Y5gwzsJ1L3o75Y
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Old 01-18-2020, 02:51 PM   #13
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Back in '05, I was towing a big but lightly loaded U-Haul trailer across Arkansas with my 99 Suburban on I-40. Outside temp was 98 degrees. I managed to burn out my transmission and spent a wonderful couple of days in Stuttgart Arkansas waiting on a replacement transmission to be shipped in from Memphis. No "tow mode" on that model Suburban.
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Old 01-20-2020, 05:48 PM   #14
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You bought a toyhauler so what toys are you going to put in it.
UTV's are very heavy, my Polaris x1000 with all the goodies is
close to 1800 lbs. Remember when they sell a utv the weight does
not include any option like a heavy spare tire or fuel.
A truck is the best way to go because you do not want to
carry extra fuel cans in an enclosed vehicle.
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Old 01-20-2020, 06:45 PM   #15
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And remember while engines are important the strain on the TV when cornering and especially stopping, will test the suspension and brakes which ultimately will determine how safe the combination is.

You would be surprised on how small of an engine will pull something but getting it to stop is the excitement.
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Old 01-31-2020, 05:54 PM   #16
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I'll go against the grain here and advise not to 'buy the biggest truck you can' just to make sure you can pull 'trailer x'... I say this because the 95% of the time you're NOT pulling your trailer, you're paying for gas to push your lone monster truck down the road in a very powerful way. If you have money to burn (literally), go that route.

...or get the trailer/truck to match as best you can, with a little room to spare. I'm using a diesel Colorado, which is a quarter ton, so pulling my Octane 161 pushes 'er, but I'm within specs. I've trailered it 1000's of miles across the country for the last year, over mountains, and it's been just fine. And the 95% of the time I'm not hitched to anything, I'm nearing 28mpg. ...and it can fit in garages and parking spaces.

Driver skill and experience, combined with patience and common sense, is the most important factor, regardless of towing capacity/GVWR, etc. Not saying that stuff isn't important, but overkill in a tow vehicle isn't needed.
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Old 01-31-2020, 06:52 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by ChaosTheory View Post
I'll go against the grain here and advise not to 'buy the biggest truck you can' just to make sure you can pull 'trailer x'... I say this because the 95% of the time you're NOT pulling your trailer, you're paying for gas to push your lone monster truck down the road in a very powerful way. If you have money to burn (literally), go that route.

...or get the trailer/truck to match as best you can, with a little room to spare. I'm using a diesel Colorado, which is a quarter ton, so pulling my Octane 161 pushes 'er, but I'm within specs. I've trailered it 1000's of miles across the country for the last year, over mountains, and it's been just fine. And the 95% of the time I'm not hitched to anything, I'm nearing 28mpg. ...and it can fit in garages and parking spaces.

Driver skill and experience, combined with patience and common sense, is the most important factor, regardless of towing capacity/GVWR, etc. Not saying that stuff isn't important, but overkill in a tow vehicle isn't needed.
And I had a 2014 Duramax LML that got 16-18 around town and 20-22 on the road with no load. Todays big vehicles get much better mileage than a few years ago.

Generally what happens is you buy too little vehicle for what you upgrade to 3-4 years later so you have to buy a new vehicle to pull the new RV. Plan ahead.
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Old 01-31-2020, 09:14 PM   #18
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IMHO it’s all about the weights and weight ratings. I have no idea what the “max tow” number is for, perhaps someone will chime in on that.
A TV’s payload is distributed over 2 axles (front - Rear but not equally). Again, IMHO its the actual weights and weight ratings that will tell you if you are within the mfg’s suggested weight limits.
A scale (CAT Scale is common) will report the actual weights and the sticker on the drivers door jamb will have the weight ratings. Loaded to travel the rear axle weight subtracted from the Rear GAWR (Gross axle weight rating) will suggest a maximum tongue weight. Divide that number by 0.12 and you have an estimate of the max TT weight the vehicle should be pulling.
All of this is just my opinion. YMMV, but I believe “the CAT Scale is your friend” and is about the best $10 a trailer person can spend.
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