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Old 02-23-2013, 07:44 AM   #1
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Towing calculator/worksheet

Hello Everyone.

My wife and I are returning to camping after a 15 year hiatus. When our children were small, we camped via tent and popup from the East to the West coast. As our kids hit their teen years, their interest waned and we stopped. Now, with just the two of us at home, we are planning an extended trip to the western national parks (Glacier, Yellowstone, Grand Tetons, Rocky Mountain) this summer.

We have ordered our first travel trailer, a White Hawk 26SRK, and it is scheduled for delivery in mid-March. While we towed a popup behind a minivan for many miles, we have never towed a travel trailer.

I have spent a lot of time on the Jayco forums and others, sorting through the issues of how to determine a safe TV/TT combination. We will be using a ProPride 3p hitch in combination with a 2006 Ford F150, 5.4L, Super Crew, towing package with a tow rating of 8300 pounds. I have put together a number of different calculations to consider various aspects of a safe towing combination. The details are below. I think we have a good combination of TV/TT, however, I am writing to see if I have overlooked anything. Is there any consideration that is missing below? The truck weights are from a CAT scale. For the TT, I am using weights from an identically configured unit. The tongue weight is calculated at 12% of trailer weight. The weight of the trailer cargo is an estimate at this point.

Thanks.

Terry



2006 F150 5.4L/Super Crew/Long wheelbase-2013 White Hawk 26SRK

Truck Front GAWR 3750
Truck Rear GAWR 3850
Truck GVWR 7200
Truck Front Actual 3220
Truck Rear Actual 2520
Truck Total Payload 1460
Truck Front Payload 530
Truck Rear Payload 1330
Truck Wheelbase 145 inches
Trailer Max Length Guide 28.75 feet
Truck Max Towing Capacity 8300
Trailer GVWR 6950
Trailer Total Actual 6458
Trailer Tongue Actual 775
Trailer Cargo Actual 900
Trailer Dry Weight Actual 5558
Trailer Weight Margin 1842
Passenger weight 330
Truck Cargo Limit 355
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Old 02-23-2013, 08:03 AM   #2
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It looks to me like you have done your homework, there are others here that are better then me at sifting through all the numbers. You look to be good on both trailer weights and payload.
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Old 02-23-2013, 08:22 AM   #3
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Looks like the calculations are correct.
I assume you have a full tank of gas.
The 355lb left for TV cargo, you will need to subtract weight of WDH? or did you have the WDH attached to TV?

If you load out differently and the tongue weight increases, you'll be pretty close to the GVWR for the TV.
I think Bob mentioned the GVWR for the 1/2 ton is where you usually run into limitations.

I added up your weights for the TV w/o cargo and that is about 95% of your capacity.

Many people use 90% of rating for max load out.

I actually like to stay at about 75%, but I am conservative.

Looks like you're going to be on the high side of 90%. Seems like you could go over pretty easily by adding some cargo in TV or additional tongue weight.

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Old 02-23-2013, 08:30 AM   #4
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Yeah he is close on payload, and will have to load accordingly. A trip to the scale will no doubt be in order with the trailer loaded for travel. Tongue weights do have a way of creeping up on you.
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:51 AM   #5
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Thanks for the quick replies. A few answers to the questions above.

The weights do reflect a full tank of gas. I also had the truck loaded with the tools and "stuff" that lives in the back seat area.

The hitch weight was not reflected in the calculations. I will have to wait until delivery to make a trip to the scales with the hitch. The 3P hitch was listed by UPS as having a shipping weight of 230 lbs. This leads to a further question below.

I calculated the cargo limit as the total payload less passenger weight and tongue weight.

The comment about the WDH has me wondering how to determine its effect. I was assuming that I add it to the weight of the TT and then I adjust the WDH to place 12 percent of that total on hitch. Or is it that I adjust the WDH to get the specified drop in hitch height and live with whatever weight that adds.

So I am unsure how to factor in the weight of the hitch. I also have a slight concern that as I adjust the WDH I may be moving too much weight to the front axle, since a WDH moves weight to the front of the TV and rear of the TT. Given the very heavy weight of the 3P hitch, I had expected that front axle payload would be the most limiting factor. Another point I am considering is that if my truck had a 3.73 as opposed to the 3.55, the towing capacity goes up another 1000 lbs. It would seem that getting that extra 1000 lbs of towing capacity is unrelated to suspension travel, braking and steering components but rather a function of torque.

Thanks for your help in clarifying this.

Terry
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:00 AM   #6
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The actual weight of the 3P hitch is 150 lbs.

Gary
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:05 AM   #7
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My understanding is that the weight of the WDH is added to the TV cargo weight.
The tongue weight is the weight on the tongue as a function of how the TT is loaded out and the weight in the TT is distributed by design.
Looks like you have about 500lbs available for the WDH to move to the front axel.
Once loaded and WDH is set-up, the CAT scale will tell you were you are.

You're going to be close on both GVWR and front GAWR. The GVWR trumps axel weight as Bob states elsewhere. The GVWR takes into account frame, suspension etc.

I am not an expert on gear ratios, but your assumption is correct. You could pull a heavier trailer, but it won't change your load ratings on the TV.

Hope this helps.

Again, looks like your going to be over the 90% GVWR that most people use as a high benchmark.

Doug
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:13 AM   #8
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"Another point I am considering is that if my truck had a 3.73 as opposed to the 3.55, the towing capacity goes up another 1000 lbs. It would seem that getting that extra 1000 lbs of towing capacity is unrelated to suspension travel, braking and steering components but rather a function of torque."

Correct. It would improve your tow rating but not your payload.
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Old 02-23-2013, 11:53 AM   #9
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Terry,

I concur with the previous replies that the weight limit to watch on 1/2 ton pickups is the actual remaining usable payload capacity and avoiding the TV's GVWR, especially when considering the heavier TT's.

(TV GVWR @ 7,200lbs) - (TV 'CAT' GVW @ 5,740lbs) = 1,460lbs weight remaining for TV passengers, loaded tongue weight, WDH weight, and any other unaccounted for TV cargo.

The individual TT weights that you are using appear to be realistic.., and I assume that your "Trailer Dry Weight Actual 5,558lbs" is the Ship Weight (yellow sticker) of a similar 26SRK.

In applications utilizing a Hensley Arrow WDH or ProPride WDH, as mentioned, the weights of these units do increase the actual TT tongue weight by about 100lbs because a good portion of the hardware is attached to the TT A-frame/ball coupler area.

As you are aware, both RV and WDH manufactures recommend a 10% to 15% loaded tongue weight range. I also agree that your 12% application is much better than 10% on the 29 feet long 26RKS. Just food for thought; many folks have found that a 13% to 15% seems to be the norm on the heavier/longer TT's (also enhances TV handling).

The following links may be helpful as well:

CAT Scale "how to": https://www.jaycoowners.com/showthrea...igh-Your-tt-tv

Note: Published Tow Ratings fall short of a TV's actual tow rating: https://www.jaycoowners.com/showthrea...uot-Tow-Rating

Bob
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Old 02-23-2013, 12:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tharrison View Post
snip...... The comment about the WDH has me wondering how to determine its effect. I was assuming that I add it to the weight of the TT and then I adjust the WDH to place 12 percent of that total on hitch. Or is it that I adjust the WDH to get the specified drop in hitch height and live with whatever weight that adds.

So I am unsure how to factor in the weight of the hitch. I also have a slight concern that as I adjust the WDH I may be moving too much weight to the front axle, since a WDH moves weight to the front of the TV and rear of the TT.....snip
Terry,

The WDH doesn't adjust the TT's loaded tongue weight, the amount of loaded weight on the TT tongue is controlled by your personal TT loading habits, that's why it takes a CAT scale visit to confirm the actual tongue weight (% of TT weight) and if any cargo within the TT needs to be re-located.

The main function of a WDH is to return the same weight that was removed from the TV's front axle do to the "effect" of the TT's tongue weight being placed on the TV's hitch ball (TV's front rises, rear squats). The importance of returning the same weight removed back to the TV's front suspension is to re-establish the steering integrity and TV handling characteristics.

The WDH when engaged will distribute (remove) weight off the TV's rear axle then distribute the proper amount of weight back to the TV's front axle and a lessor amount of weight back to the TT axles. The weight being distributed in most cases is less than the loaded tongue weight value (not all TV/TT combinations are created equal). It should be noted that the loaded tongue weight value originally placed over the TV's hitch ball remains fairly constant.

Some WDH's like the ProPride, Hensley, Equal-i-zer, Reese Strait-Line, etc., also have sway control integrated into the product.

The only way to know that any WDH is adjusted properly is a visit to the CAT scale.

Hope this helps.

Bob
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