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Old 07-25-2011, 01:10 PM   #1
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New member thinking of purchasing Designer

Hello everyone, my wife and I are seriously considering making an offer on a 2006 Jayco Designer, model 31RKS. We currently have a Keystone Outback and have outgrown the relatively small size. I don't know much about the Designer but they get very good reviews. Before making an offer on the trailer I'd like to understand a few things better.

We have an F250 Diesel LG 4x4 which is quite heavy and has a limited payload capacity. While I'm convinced the trucks actual payload is much greater and I'm willing to exceed the rating, I don't want to purchase a trailer which my truck can not pull safely. So, hitch weight is important. The Jayco website says the dry hitch on the 31RKS is 2,300. The trailer is equipped with a Onan 5500 genny, an inverter, a second AC in the bedroom and probably a few more extras. The additional weight of these options is up front so a disproportionate amount will likely go on the pin.

My first question is how much should the pin weight on this trailer be with about 2,000lbs of water and gear in addition to the genny and other add ons?

My second question has to do with the slides. The living room slide moves very slow and the motor seems to be working overtime to move it out and back in. Is this normal for a large slide? I haven't checked the bedroom slide on this unit so don't know if that also operates slowly. My small trailer slide moves much faster. But it's only 14" deep by 8 feet long so quite light by comparison.

Finally, are there any known issues that I should be aware of? Leaks, structural, delamination etc.

Thanks in advance for your responses. If we get lucky and purchase the unit, I'll provide a more formal introduction.

Until then,

Gary
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Old 07-25-2011, 04:23 PM   #2
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My 2010 Designer's small slide moves faster than the larger slide, always has,
I am about to put my 2010 35rlts up for sale
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Old 07-25-2011, 08:32 PM   #3
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Welcome to the Jayco Owners Forum garyb1st! Hope your research and input from members here helps you make an informed purchase! Let us know what you wind up doing.
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Old 07-25-2011, 08:42 PM   #4
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I can't tell you anything about the trailer but I know about F250's and I LOVE them. I have a 2006 F250 and the GCWR which is the most important to me is 23,000. The F350 has the exact same GCWR which means that the F250 can pull a bigger trailer than the F350 because the F350 weighs more. Now this GCWR is the same for 2003-2006 from what I understand. Not he truck GVWR is 10,000. I put a 100 gallon tank in the bed of my truck, filled it up, then went to the truck stop and weighed it. So I can be under all weight ratings pulling the biggest Jayco Bunk House trailer, the 365BHS. Check the weight on that one. If you have an older 7.3 Ford I think the weights are smaller, let me know.
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Old 07-26-2011, 09:10 AM   #5
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First of all, thanks to everyone for responding. I was concerned because I didn't get any email indications letting me know the three of you had responded. I guess I need to look into my settings.

Justcampin, that makes sense and probably the reason the large slide on the unit I'm considering moves slowly. Good luck on the sale of your unit.

Healthi, I definitely will. So far most all of my research suggests Jayco builds an excellent trailer.

Monte, thanks for the info on your tow vehicle. Sounds like my truck is a year older version than yours. It's the 2005 F250 XLT 4x4 CC LB. It weighs about 8,000 with a load of fuel my wife and self. So based on the advertised payload rating, I can only have about 2,000 lbs max on the pin. But, I tend to agree with you, This is a lighter version of the F350. I've done a ton of research and it appears the only difference are in the springs and larger tires. I learned yesterday that the axle is the same and the lower axle rating is based on the weight limit of the springs. I've concluded the payload limit has to do with vehicle registration and not capability of the truck. Do you have air bags or extra springs on your unit? Also, I like the idea of the 100 gallon fuel tank. I've thought about that.
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Old 07-26-2011, 09:03 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garyb1st View Post
snip.........My first question is how much should the pin weight on this trailer be with about 2,000lbs of water and gear in addition to the genny and other add ons?.....snip
Gary,

One could only guess, and a purchase made under the wrong assumptions could be costly. Do you know if the present owner has ever CAT scale weighed the FW? If not, you may want to have it weighed before making the purchase....work with real weights.

The recommended "loaded" pin weight should be 15% to 25% of your "loaded" FW weight. On the longer and heavier FW's, I tend to recommend a 20% minimum.

The '06' 31RKS FW had a published UVW of 10,185lbs, GVWR of 14,000lbs, and dry hitch of 2,300lbs. The UVW doesn't reflect the actual "ship weight" from the factory, assume another 350lbs.

So for grins : (10,185lbs) + (350lbs) + (2,000lbs water/gear) + (300lbs genny) = 12,835lbs @ 20% = 2,567lbs pin weight. This is based on the weight being properly distributed.

Don't forget to account for the weight of the hitch against your TV's RGAWR as well.

Just food for thought.

Bob
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Old 07-26-2011, 11:54 PM   #7
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No extras on my truck and with my 100 gallon tank full of fuel, my truck weighs 8000lbs. Now the GVWR is 10K on our trucks and the GCWR is 23,000. I was told by ford that the GVWR should not be considered when pulling a trailer, only the GCWR and the RAWR. Ford told me that trailers (especially 5th Wheels) have unloaded weight. I had no idea what that meant and they explained it to me like this. As you are driving down the road the front of the 5th wheel is constantly weighing different weights because of the road. So I asked them if my RAWR and GCWR were in limits would I be in limits according to Ford and they told me yes. I was really worried about the GVWR when I was looking at the Jayco 365BHS, but they told me that as long as I didn't max out the trailer with weight, I would be fine. They also told me (under the table) that all those values are very conservative. So take that as you want. If you can hook up to the trailer and take it to the truck stop and have them weight each axel, you will know right quick what you are dealing with.
The main reason I have the 100gallon fuel tank is because I put diesel in my main tank and I make my own fuel that I put in the big tank. I have over 100,000 miles with my own fuel and I have 225,000 on the truck and the engine is great!!
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Old 07-27-2011, 07:00 AM   #8
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snip.......I was told by ford that the GVWR should not be considered when pulling a trailer, only the GCWR and the RAWR.
Monte and Kids,

Interesting..., but Ford's own Towing Guides contradict that statement. One will find the following statement in many Ford publications/documents in respect to tow ratings:

"Trailer tongue (trailer king pin for 5th-wheel towing) load weight should be 10-15% (15-25% for 5th-wheel towing) of total loaded trailer weight. Make sure vehicle payload (reduce by option weight) will accommodate trailer tongue (trailer king pin for 5th-wheel towing) load weight and weight of passengers and cargo added to towing vehicle. Addition of trailer tongue (trailer king pin for 5th-wheel towing) load weight and weight of passengers and cargo cannot cause vehicle weights to exceed rear GAWR or GVWR. These ratings can be found on the vehicle Safety Compliance Certification Label."

Reference source: http://www.ford.com/towingguides/

Quote:
Originally Posted by Monte and Kids View Post
snip.......I was really worried about the GVWR when I was looking at the Jayco 365BHS, but they told me that as long as I didn't max out the trailer with weight, I would be fine.
I'm a little confused why they seem to be concerned about the 365BHS GVWR more than their own product GVWR......, I guess if I was assuming that the Ford TV was at it's "curb weight" (Ford tow rating is based on) might account for the statement.

I figure that RV, Automotive, Hitch, etc., manufactures take the time to generate weight limits I might as well use them....but that's me.

Bob
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Old 07-27-2011, 09:22 AM   #9
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Monte, I tend to agree with what the Ford salesman says about axle and combined being more important. The changing pin weight as we drive down the road is something I hadn't thought about. It actually makes sense so maybe there's a margin built in just for that. Have you posted anything about your home made fuel? I'd like to hear more about that. Didn't know the 6.0 could use it.

Bob, I'm looking at the pin weight the same way you are. I figure it's going to be at least 2,700 lbs. In spite of the GVW limits of the F250, I think I'm OK with that much pin. If you're interested, I can give you more info on how I arrived at the higher number.

Gary
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Old 07-27-2011, 09:38 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garyb1st View Post
Hello everyone, my wife and I are seriously considering making an offer on a 2006 Jayco Designer, model 31RKS. We currently have a Keystone Outback and have outgrown the relatively small size. I don't know much about the Designer but they get very good reviews. Before making an offer on the trailer I'd like to understand a few things better.

We have an F250 Diesel LG 4x4 which is quite heavy and has a limited payload capacity. While I'm convinced the trucks actual payload is much greater and I'm willing to exceed the rating, I don't want to purchase a trailer which my truck can not pull safely. So, hitch weight is important. The Jayco website says the dry hitch on the 31RKS is 2,300. The trailer is equipped with a Onan 5500 genny, an inverter, a second AC in the bedroom and probably a few more extras. The additional weight of these options is up front so a disproportionate amount will likely go on the pin.

My first question is how much should the pin weight on this trailer be with about 2,000lbs of water and gear in addition to the genny and other add ons?

My second question has to do with the slides. The living room slide moves very slow and the motor seems to be working overtime to move it out and back in. Is this normal for a large slide? I haven't checked the bedroom slide on this unit so don't know if that also operates slowly. My small trailer slide moves much faster. But it's only 14" deep by 8 feet long so quite light by comparison.

Finally, are there any known issues that I should be aware of? Leaks, structural, delamination etc.

Thanks in advance for your responses. If we get lucky and purchase the unit, I'll provide a more formal introduction.

Until then,

Gary
The 2300 pin weight is probably based on basic RV without the generator, etc. My F250 Super Duty diesel short bed's pin weight max is around 2900 but I would not go near that amount. I have installed Firestone air bags on back and inflate to 15-18 psi and that makes quite a difference in back end drop down. Adding a 100lbs diesel tank in bed (about 800lbs) I think would max out your pin weight capacity. Do you have a short bed or long bed truck?
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