Jayco RV Owners Forum

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Old 07-25-2013, 06:29 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by dakranii View Post
Thank you for the reply.

Just removing some of the complication here (I'm imagining the look I'll get when I tell my wife we're going to pack for camping but not actual go camping, but rather drive down the interstate to the closest weigh station), I keep coming back to this thought:

Jayco specifically says these trailers are for "made for minivans and crossovers" and I have one of the biggest engines you can get in a minivan and the trailer I've chosen is the second smallest of 5 available...I've got to be okay weight-wise, right? Otherwise what minivan is Jayco talking about here? They would be irresponsible to suggest that a product is made for a particular vehicle when even the most hardy of those vehicles can't actually handle it.

Perhaps I'm being naÔve, perhaps I'm being lazy.
Possibly they were refering an "Astro Mini-van" which is a solid axel, leaf sprung and solid body on frame construction with a 4.3 V6. Basically an S-10 pickup/Blazer with a minivan body. Too bad they are long out of production but I agree todays mini vans are pretty lightweight in that catagory.

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Old 07-25-2013, 09:33 AM   #22
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Good thread,
It's great that you're doing your homework before going down the road
I was in a similar situation as you are last year. 4.0L, V6 4 Runner with factory hitch.
I had to upgrade my factory hitch to something rated at 500#. I did have a truck frame that was approved to work with a WDH. My friend has a Highlander and they are built on a Camry frame. Toyota does not recommend using a WDH on them.
However, many people on the Toyota forum have been fine with a lightweight system in your range.

After reading this thread, I would only have the following adds.

1. Check with your local dealer service manager on his/her take on using a lightweight WDH system on your vehicle.
2. Your Curt hitch rating seems fine.
3. This is the WDH that I purchased and it has done a fine job combining WD and sway control. (just check brackets periodically to make sure nothing shifts)
4. etrailer.com has some good articles and videos on WD and sway control systems. They also seem to have a knowledgable staff that will take calls directly to answer any questions.
5. Make the time to visit the CAT scale to weigh you packed out rig after you get it set-up. If you're not 100% packed, you'll still get the 80% knowledge for 20% effort. Tell your wife it's important for the safety of your family and not a waste of time. Have her go with you so she gains an understanding of the process and she can calculate the numbers as you get them :-)
If that doesn't work for you, plan an extra 1 hour and hit a truck stop on your 1st outing to get the fully packed out weights. It's really no a big job and will give you and your wife some practice hitching and unhitching the rig. Just take your time and have patience. I think our CAT scale process took us all of 1/2 hour total.

In the sticky section of this forum, there is a worksheet for getting CAT scale figures.

I just re-arranged the order of weights to minimize hitching and unhitching.
1st weight is TV + TT + WDH engaged
2nd weight TV + TT + WD bars removed, but stowed in TV rear cargo area
3rd weight TV only (unhitch TT off the the side of the parking lot somewhere out of the way)
Here is their website for locating your nearest location
They also have some tips for the weighing procedure and a nice video.
Three weights will cost you $16, best money you'll ever spend.
Bring a yard stick with you to reach the call button. It's about 8' high usually designed for tractor trailer rig heights :-)

When all done, your towing experience will not be the best, but it will be safe and within the design limits of your tow vehicle.

These TT's are like having a parachute behind you. Wind will be your enemy. Leave early morning (6-7am) and arrive by noon.

Don't be in a hurry. You'll have more control and best gas mileage doing 55mph and just stay in the slow lane.
CA law is 55mph when towing. I went from Ohio to CA and back doing 55mph. Arriving safely is the key to an enjoyable trip.

Keep us updated, post some pictures and your scale readings when all done.

Happy camping,



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Old 07-29-2013, 04:05 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Rustic Eagle View Post
That's good to know because just about every other Jayco HTT, TT, and FW the actual Ship Weight (yellow sticker) is anywhere from 250lbs to 700lbs above the published UVW (depending on how it is configured). In the case of the 154BH having the UVW and Ship Weight at 2,450lbs works in favor of the limited CCC.

Thanks for the confirmation.

Here's what Jayco had to say about the advertised weight:

"As you've discovered, the Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW) is really a starting point. Normally, you would have to add the weights of the options to the UVW, but since there were no options on the 2013 154BH, the trailer should have weighed approximately 2,450 pounds when it left the factory. Any additional weight would only come from equipment that your dealer might add or any cargo that you might add."

Would the battery and/or propane tank be included do you think? The TT would come from the factory with those wouldn't it have?
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Old 07-29-2013, 04:06 PM   #24
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Okay, first, thanks everyone for responses. I'm still working on what we're doing. Aside from the weight calculations, I'm also figuring out the financials and where we're going to store the TT when we're not using it.

I'm heading to a CAT scale with a fully-packed-for-vacation vehicle this weekend, so I should get some answers that I'll post here. We have one about 2 miles from our house, so that'll be a piece of cake.
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Old 07-29-2013, 04:38 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by dakranii View Post
snip......Would the battery and/or propane tank be included do you think? The TT would come from the factory with those wouldn't it have?
The RV dealer adds the battery (not included in any of Jayco's weights), and the dealer also fills the LP tanks but the weight of the LP solution is included with the weights reflected on the Ship Weight yellow sticker (not included in the published UVW).

I would work with the Jayco Ship Weight (154BH yellow sticker) of 2,550lbs as noted by member "Threebutchers" in his earlier post as a safe bet.


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Old 07-31-2013, 09:50 AM   #26
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Hi dakranii, I'm new to the forum and TT as well so i feel your pain! We've been Jayco pop-up campers for 4 or 5 years. We just purchased our TT in January, and had to work through these issues as well. I'll second the "mini-van" comment above, being an Astro owner, our 4th or 5th, l lost count! It is the only 'mini' van with a full frame and fairly popular for towing. Our TT is 4k dry and our TV can handle 5500 or 6000 depending on configuration, gears and drivetrain. We are stuck at 5500 because of the AWD and maybe even 5k because I'm not sure what gears we have. Our last Astro may it rest in peace, had towing gears and pulled like snot, this one is a bit weak.

But I digress, work with that yellow number to start, find out how much leftover from your TV capacity, and that's pretty much what 'cargo' you can haul. Others here have mentioned, that includes passengers and cargo in TV, so getting that TV weight loaded is probably a good idea, but I'm guessing you'll be over in no time. Take my example, 4100# TT, 5500# towing capacity, pretty much leaves me 1400# cargo. Now throw in me, my wife and my two 6ft teenagers and I've eaten half that. That being said, we are doing fine other than power on hills, with our setup.

DEFINITELY recommend the Equal-i-zer brand WD, with built in sway. Why put two things on when one will do it? I have TT Friends with several models, chains, with and without sway, and one who steered me to Equal-i-zer. Some sway controls and WD hitches need to be removed to backup and turn, the Equal-i-zer does not. We load our TT over the axles with a little bias to front to keep that load on tongue and it tows like a dream. I can barely feel the TT back there. No sway, and our TV rides nice. Oh, and another tip, don't travel with tanks full unless it's absolutely impossible to fill near your destination. Water is almost 9# per gallon, so 35 gallons of FW adds 300# fast.

Good luck!

2013 Jayco X23F
2002 Chevy Astro AWD
2000 Chevy Astro AWD (retired)
1996 Jayco 10UD (retired)
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