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Old 05-13-2017, 04:44 PM   #1
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Newbie with questions

We are in the process of buying our first camper. We are looking at a used "only 1 time" 2016 slx 264 with the bunk beds. We will be towing with a 2014 Nissan Armada. Question 1 how accurate is the 4700 empty weight? My max towing is 9100 with a tongue weight of 900. We also plan on driving cross country this summer. Any opinions on how the armada will handle the mountain passes? It's a 5.6 liter v8 5 speed, with a gear ratio of 3.357:1. I'll be using a pro series WDH that is included in the price of 11,000.00 #2 How will this size camper work with my TV? #3 Since I'm buying it used private party I would like a checklist of what to look for. I get to test all appliances, plumbing and stuff like that, but I'm sure there are things I'll forget about. #4 General thoughts on this camper for a family of 5. #6 How is this price?
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Old 05-13-2017, 04:56 PM   #2
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welcome

Welcome to the board! You will get lots of great advice here. There is a whole forum on towing too in case you don't get traction on that here.
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Old 05-13-2017, 06:38 PM   #3
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I looked at the Armada, wasn't familiar. If it's an SUV, I wouldn't go any bigger than a 20' personally. If it's a truck platform, like a suburban, maybe a 24'.
It's the wheel base that gets you towing these trailers.
Your payload is something else you need to look at.
This trailer loaded will probably have a tongue weight, combined with your family and cargo that will exceed your specs.
I towed a 16.5' trailer out West with my 4Runner. Just me, wife and dog. It was white knuckles all the way.
I like to try to stay about 80% of my rated capacity.
I went to a 24' trailer this year with a Tundra 5.7L V8. I wouldn't want anything bigger going across country.
Pricing, I look at Blue Book and try to come somewhere in-between trade in value and retail. Closer to trade-in value the better.

Hope that helps. Personally, I think that is too much trailer for that rig and with a large family, cargo etc. your going to be limited.

PDI (Pre-delivery Checklist) can be found as a sticky thread on the home page of the forum..

Hope that helps,
Doug
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Old 05-13-2017, 07:48 PM   #4
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Read through your vehicle towing section of your manual.
I think this one will get you out of spec 1st.
"On all NISSAN vehicles, the
GVWR
is shown on the
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (F.M.V.S.S.)
certification label located in the driver’s-side door area.
Weigh your vehicle on the scale with all of the
passengers and cargo that are normally in the vehicle
when pulling a trailer. Subtract the actual vehicle
weight from the GVWR. The remaining amount is the
available maximum tongue/king pin load.
To avoid overloading the vehicle, be sure
to include the trailer tongue/king pin load as a
part of the cargo when determining how much weight
can be safely carried inside the vehicle. "

Doug
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Old 05-13-2017, 08:10 PM   #5
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The gvwr is 7300 with a curb weight of about 5300. People and gear in the car is jot more than 800 lbs the dry weight of the camper is around 4600 figure another 800-1000 for gear in the camper. That puts me at less than 6000 total weight for the camper. That would give me a total weight of 6700 not including fuel and hitch weight. I guess I'd be bumping right up against the gvwr.
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Old 05-13-2017, 08:30 PM   #6
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Fdnavy,

Your TV may or may not be suitable for your trailer. You have a payload of up to 1742 pounds. If you maxed out your trailer to the 6500 GVW, your tongue weight could be as much as 925 pounds. That would still leave you with 817 pounds of family and stuff in the Armada.

Your wheelbase is 123 inches. This is short but only 7 inches shorter than my former TV, a 2008 Explorer Sport Trac. You have a bigger payload and an extra 25 more horse, not to mention an extra 2000 pounds of trailer capability than the Sport Trac. If the short wheelbase scares you a bit, I pulled a 25 foot trailer with a 1986 Ford Bronco that had a 104 inch wheelbase and never had a problem other than the low-tech three-speed Ford Cruise-o-matic.

Doug mentioned he like to stay at 80% of his tow capacity. You will be below that at about 72%. Be sure to check your hitch for a sticker that states your max tongue weight, as it could be a deal breaker.

For $$$ asked, the link below will show the cost of the trailer new:

https://www.jayco.com/tools/archive/...ht-slx/264bhw/

Hope this helps a little.

Murff
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Old 05-13-2017, 08:34 PM   #7
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7300 GVWR - 5300 curb wt = 2,000 lbs total available.
2,000 - 800 (family of 5) = 1,200 available
150 misc in vehicle = 1,050 available
50 WDH = 1,000 maximum available for tongue wt.

Trailer GVWR = 6,500
Tongue wt = 15% of 6,500 = 975 lbs

You would be maxed out in my opinion which is not a comfortable position to be in towing.

Best regards,
Doug
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Old 05-13-2017, 08:53 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fdnavy View Post
We are in the process of buying our first camper. We are looking at a used "only 1 time" 2016 slx 264 with the bunk beds. We will be towing with a 2014 Nissan Armada. Question 1 how accurate is the 4700 empty weight? My max towing is 9100 with a tongue weight of 900. We also plan on driving cross country this summer. Any opinions on how the armada will handle the mountain passes? It's a 5.6 liter v8 5 speed, with a gear ratio of 3.357:1. I'll be using a pro series WDH that is included in the price of 11,000.00 #2 How will this size camper work with my TV? #3 Since I'm buying it used private party I would like a checklist of what to look for. I get to test all appliances, plumbing and stuff like that, but I'm sure there are things I'll forget about. #4 General thoughts on this camper for a family of 5. #6 How is this price?
The empty weight is pretty accurate for most trailers if you know what they are talking about. It is the weight of the trailer with no options and no water on board. If you have viewing ability, read the label for the actual trailer, it will give you a lot more accurate information than the brochure.
The Armada is a BEAST of an SUV. I would expect it can handle this trailer with no issue, but the main number you should focus on is the payload capacity. Everyone focuses on the max towing, but realistically you have to be able to carry the tongue weight plus the weight of everyone/everything you are going to load inside of that huge cargo hold. This number is easy to find on your door jamb stickers; it will say the maximum of all cargo and occupants cannot exceed x,xxx lbs. Add up your expected tongue weight (I usually take the ratio of the dry tongue/dry trailer, and apply that ratio to the max trailer weight to calculate the approximate max tongue weight), the weight of your occupants, and the weight of your expected gear inside the truck, and compare that the payload listed on YOUR vehicle.
$11k for a 2016? I would be ALL OVER that deal. Sounds like they are throwing in all of the extras they already purchased. Take what you can get, but I wouldn't push too hard for anything they don't want to give up. SWEEET!
I can't comment on how this camper will work with your family. That is a very individual thing. The best you can do is sit down in it and think it through. Don't just picture sunny days. Picture a crappy weather day; will everyone have enough space to keep out of each other's hair?
I would use the PDI checklist here on JOF, but as you state, this is a private sale. Keep in mind that the current owner, if they only used it once, has not yet found all of the initial quality issues on the TT. Initial quality issues are rampant in the industry. Personally, I am happier with a moderately used 3-4 year TT because I know the previous owner has probably taken care of all the IQI's and the aging issues have not yet started to rear their heads. Again, eyes wide open; you are buying a trailer and they are a constant maintenance item. Most of us who truly like the lifestyle, like it BECAUSE it is always challenging us with new and interesting items in all areas of maintenance. I am at my happiest when I am puttering or tinkering with our TT!
Welcome to JOF, and welcome to the lifestyle. I hope you find it as fulfilling and exciting as the rest of us!
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Old 05-14-2017, 04:49 AM   #9
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im learning that the advertised tow ratings are basically nonesence and only realistic if you are towing the camper empty with only the driver on board.
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Old 05-14-2017, 04:51 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug View Post
7300 GVWR - 5300 curb wt = 2,000 lbs total available.
2,000 - 800 (family of 5) = 1,200 available
150 misc in vehicle = 1,050 available
50 WDH = 1,000 maximum available for tongue wt.

Trailer GVWR = 6,500
Tongue wt = 15% of 6,500 = 975 lbs

You would be maxed out in my opinion which is not a comfortable position to be in towing.

Best regards,
Doug


Shouldn't the trailer weight be what we plan on carrying not the trailer gvwr? We don't plan on hauling 2000 lbs of gear. I figure at most we would have 1000 lbs.
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Old 05-14-2017, 05:37 AM   #11
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I have a 06 Infiniti QX56 (basically an Armada with an aluminum block and a few more bells and whistles). It is a beast of an SUV designed and built for towing. Tow capacity is 8900lbs, equipped with tow mode that changes the gear shifting points, rear air suspension, and trans cooler. I use the Equal-i-zer WHD (which I love) and clip-on tow mirrors.
I have a 2010 Jay Feather 24T the is very close to the size/weight of your 264BHW.
I've traveled form NY to FL, all thru the Blue Ridge and Alleghanys and have had not a problem one; with my WDH it is one solid unit (zero sway or porpoise). I effortlessly cruise along 60-65, and as far as climbing mountains, I just stay in the truck lane, take my time, and enjoy the views.
I'm completely satisfied and feel totally safe with my setup.
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Old 05-14-2017, 05:59 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fdnavy View Post
Shouldn't the trailer weight be what we plan on carrying not the trailer gvwr? We don't plan on hauling 2000 lbs of gear. I figure at most we would have 1000 lbs.
You are correct.
I was working actual possibilities. In the habit of sizing my tow vehicle based on GVWR.

You just need to verify your numbers on a CAT scale to be safe.

Sounds like others have had good experience with this TV.

You've gotten some good information, both theoretical and practical.

Safe travels.

I was close to buying used last fall and got approval to use their WDH and do a test pull. Maybe you could work something out to tow it on the expressway and hit a few hills.
Doug
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