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Old 04-18-2013, 05:54 AM   #1
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Question looking at a 25' Camper

I'm looking at buying a camper and I'd love some input from TW members.

I have a '06 DC Tacoma and the camper I am looking at is a 25" tandem axle "Rockwood". I think I have the factory towing package on my truck but understand I need to look into trailer brake hookup and sway bar setup. I also was about to do 5100's on all for corners and maybe AAL (TSB not done).

Based on the Camper specs below (outlined in red) is this camper too big for my Tacoma? I plan to use at a local campground and an occasional 150 mile trip twice a year.

I really appreciate any feedback, thank you!



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Old 04-18-2013, 06:11 AM   #2
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Pushing it. Going to be a handful. You will need the factory tow package.
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Old 04-18-2013, 09:24 AM   #3
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as long as you have the factory tow package, you should be fine. You are not pushing it as far a weight goes, which is good. However, you are at about the longest length you would want, especially with a DCSB.

Trailer brakes and anti sway/WD hitch are a must...I would leave the leafs allone unless you notice you need them or are still under warranty. biggest problem you will have with that is cross winds...but ten again, you're only going 150 miles with it, so it wouldnt really bne a problem as long as you took your time...
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Old 04-18-2013, 04:37 PM   #4
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You should get it weighed and find out the true weight as it sits. The "dry weight" is usually a bunch of crap from manufacturers. It can be done, you're pushing it though, travel trailers are the toughest to tow, they are tall, long, and top heavy. You'll get wind drag and side winds and you'll feel it in the truck and the Tacoma is a smaller, lighter, more narrow truck and you want bigger. Throw the "6500" pound towing capacity out the window when it comes to a travel trailer.

I bet this guy was under towing capacity----->http://youtu.be/kwOqARlw1EI?t=28s
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Old 04-18-2013, 05:51 PM   #5
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Thanks for the input everyone.

I've seen the clip of that crosswind blowing over that TT, that's exactly why I'm taking this serious and educating myself.

I have some questions about that video clip. If that "non" 5th wheel TT could not have been towed safely with a 3500 dually GMC then what vehicle could possibly do it better? It looked more like a lack of a W/D device to me then the truck being under sized. It doesn't get much bigger than a 3500 dually. Would a W/D device have just rolled the truck over too?

Wouldn't it be safe to say that no matter what tow vehicle was being used there that those results were inevitable given the same speeds were driven and the same hardware was used?

I'm just trying to understand this stuff a little more and I don't want to get into a situation I'm going to regret.
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Old 04-18-2013, 09:10 PM   #6
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I think the biggest concern is you are over the maximum recommended length for your trucks wheelbase. I don't have the chart in front of me, but I think 24' is the max you should tow with our short beds. Can you do it? Yes, but any part of the equation that equals over the max limit increases safety concerns. You don't want your trailer to control your truck with the a tail wags the dog effect.
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Old 04-19-2013, 04:50 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rizzo20 View Post
Thanks for the input everyone.

I've seen the clip of that crosswind blowing over that TT, that's exactly why I'm taking this serious and educating myself.

I have some questions about that video clip. If that "non" 5th wheel TT could not have been towed safely with a 3500 dually GMC then what vehicle could possibly do it better? It looked more like a lack of a W/D device to me then the truck being under sized. It doesn't get much bigger than a 3500 dually. Would a W/D device have just rolled the truck over too?

Wouldn't it be safe to say that no matter what tow vehicle was being used there that those results were inevitable given the same speeds were driven and the same hardware was used?

I'm just trying to understand this stuff a little more and I don't want to get into a situation I'm going to regret.
Heavy winds flip tractor trailers they are huge sails that's why they close bridges and open areas in high winds to high profile stuff. WD hitch just levels the TV and if the hitch assembly is strong enough yes it will flip the truck.
http://www.cbbt.com/weather.html
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Old 04-19-2013, 04:56 AM   #8
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Some thing else to think about the dry weight of a new camper is empty, no propane tanks no water nothing in the drain tanks no battery, nothing but the frame and body.
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Old 04-19-2013, 06:00 PM   #9
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I've got a 2011 Tacoma, 6 speed manual, with the tow package. We tow a 2012 Rockwood Mini Lite travel trailer which weighs in at around 4,000 lbs. We have a Reese weight distribution/anti-sway bar setup and the Tacoma has pulled this trailer about 18,000 miles now. We live in Canada and are currently on a road trip to Florida. The Tacoma pulls this weight comfortably, but you certainly know that you're pulling something.
It appears my biggest mistake with this combination to date has been to listen to my local tire dealer, when he suggested that I go to an LT tire instead of the factory installed P 265/70R/16's. (The original B.F. Goodrich's, were worn out after about 18,000 miles.)The LT's, which carry an E rating, appear to be too much tire for the truck. Tire dealer said to set all 4 tires at 50 psi. However, the handling of the truck and trailer felt like I was driving on ice. Dealer contacted Goodyear and they said to crank them up to 70 psi. Going to test the setup out tomorrow on a short (150 mile) drive to the next campground, but I already don't have a good feeling. (The sidewall on these tires calls for 80 psi at max. load.)
All that being said, I am seriously considering going to the 5.7 litre engine in the Tundra, however, I really don't want to give up my manual tranny.
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Old 04-22-2013, 06:14 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkillora View Post
I've got a 2011 Tacoma, 6 speed manual, with the tow package. We tow a 2012 Rockwood Mini Lite travel trailer which weighs in at around 4,000 lbs. We have a Reese weight distribution/anti-sway bar setup and the Tacoma has pulled this trailer about 18,000 miles now. We live in Canada and are currently on a road trip to Florida. The Tacoma pulls this weight comfortably, but you certainly know that you're pulling something.
It appears my biggest mistake with this combination to date has been to listen to my local tire dealer, when he suggested that I go to an LT tire instead of the factory installed P 265/70R/16's. (The original B.F. Goodrich's, were worn out after about 18,000 miles.)The LT's, which carry an E rating, appear to be too much tire for the truck. Tire dealer said to set all 4 tires at 50 psi. However, the handling of the truck and trailer felt like I was driving on ice. Dealer contacted Goodyear and they said to crank them up to 70 psi. Going to test the setup out tomorrow on a short (150 mile) drive to the next campground, but I already don't have a good feeling. (The sidewall on these tires calls for 80 psi at max. load.)
All that being said, I am seriously considering going to the 5.7 litre engine in the Tundra, however, I really don't want to give up my manual tranny.
wouldn't a good set a tires be cheeper than a new truck? you need a LT tire with a C rated side wall.
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Old 04-22-2013, 06:38 AM   #11
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Do not tow that camper w that truck. The Tacoma is not heavy enough to pull something with that much wind resistance not to mention the 4.0 would be taxed. I tried to pull my dads 28fter because they had a brush fire behind their house and I was trying to save as much as I could for they were 6hrs away. With my 4x4 DC LB anything over 45 and she was swaying everywhere. Luckily I had only a short distance to go.

Only reason I'm chiming in on this is for your safety. Towing a camper is totally differ than any trailer. I like my truck but it is only a toy. You need a real truck to handle that.
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Old 04-22-2013, 07:41 AM   #12
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Its interesting to see all the differing opinions. Not just in this thread but in nearly every travel trailer thread.

I think Im going to give it a whirl. I have a brake controller, Reese leveling and anti sway hitch, AAL springs.

I have 2 campgrounds within 10 miles that we plan to frequent. If its as bad as some are predicting Ill see about going to a fullsize.
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Old 04-22-2013, 08:39 AM   #13
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OP if you take it easy just going 10 miles you should be fine...emphasis on "easy". With just a couple of those trips you will quickly realize that 150 mile trip is not going to happen, especially if "any" wind picks up.
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Old 04-22-2013, 08:45 AM   #14
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Definitely not...I tow 4k pounds and the truck is terrible at pulling it. Get a bigger truck or smaller camper...
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Old 04-22-2013, 08:56 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taco227 View Post
Definitely not...I tow 4k pounds and the truck is terrible at pulling it. Get a bigger truck or smaller camper...
Correct me if I am wrong, but, 291lb hitch weight? I think the limit is 250lb in our trucks. Of course, I was wrong before.
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Old 04-22-2013, 09:20 AM   #16
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Im pretty sure the max tongue weight is 650 lbs. I also confirmed that I do indeed have factory tow package.

Im supposed to pick the camper up tomorrow.... I have to admit the naysayers have me worried.
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Old 04-22-2013, 06:44 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rizzo20 View Post
Im pretty sure the max tongue weight is 650 lbs. I also confirmed that I do indeed have factory tow package.

Im supposed to pick the camper up tomorrow.... I have to admit the naysayers have me worried.
Correct, max tongue weight is 650. The least of your issues will be the tongue weight. The 7'6" width and the over 25' length would be the concern. The width will mean you fuel mileage will suck ass. The length is beyond what is recommended for your short wheel base truck. I hope it works out for you, really I do. Mainly because I just bought a toy hauler that is 22' with a tongue weight of 620 lbs. I too have a lot of people saying don't buy that trailer. Oh well, I'm driving to AR to get it next week.
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Old 04-23-2013, 01:40 PM   #18
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UPDATE: I picked up a camper today....not the one I originally asked about but similar. (probably bigger)

It's a Fleetwood Resort Ext 25 QB
25' and 48xx dry wieght (per manufacturer) Seller included Reese friction anti-sway bar and a W/D setup. I also installed a Pilot brake controller.

My Taco did OK, not great or awesome just OK. My 50+ mile trip had a little of everything. Flat interstate hi-way with gusts of wind and crosswinds (unknown speed), a long steep winding mountian road (Rte 350 Bald Eagle, PA) and some red light to red light "city" travel.

For the most part I never went over 60 mph. I never once felt the trailer sway or fish tail. I did however feel the push from big trucks that were running 75ish+ mph. If a truck eased by me I never really felt any push.

As for power, it was good on the flat or slight grades. I can see how it will use a ton of fuel because you have to stay in it or even get somewhat of a run for average hills. I doubt it will get any steeper or twisty/windy than Route 350 Tyrone Pike for me. I never dropped below 40 mph and had to let up for several of the turns for handling. I didn't have the accelerator on the floor at all and I believe the truck was in 3rd gear the whole way up (auto). IIRC, the RPM's were somewhere around 4000-4200. I have no idea what the trans temps were because I can't monitor them yet but I didn't feel any slipping or smell any weird smells. All in all, I was satisfied with the Taco's performance and wouldn't hesitate to put the truck through that a few times a year if I had to. That hill is not on any of my planned trips and I doubt I'll ever have to climb anything similar to it again, or go down for that matter.

I didn't get a chance to really test the braking as my trip home was mostly uphill but it seemed to brake fine when I used it. My controller worked good set at 3.8-4.0 and was stopping much like the truck would w/o the trailer.

For the camping my family plans to do and the destinations we have in mind I have no issues whatsoever towing this trailer with my Taco. Sure, we didn't have all of our camping gear in the truck, but I will be sure to keep it to a minimum. Would a fullsize truck do a better job and be safer, yea more than likely but it's not currently in my budget. All of our camping trips are planned to be within 10-20 miles of our house and I feel comfortable making the trip with this setup. I do want to mention though that the 150 mile trip I mentioned before is cancelled, lol. Too far away to beat on the truck IMHO. I would reconsider it if I did have a bigger truck. I think the Taco will "legally" and safely get me to our local campgrounds but I wouldn't want to push it anymore than that.

Thank you everyone for the feedback. I plan to check in and update this thread ater a few of my trips to let you know how the Taco is holding up and if there are any things I should add.
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:23 PM   #19
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Thanks for the write up Rizzo20. I guess the one thing that concerns me is you don't want tow it 150 miles to go camping. In my mind, if the truck can't handle going 150 miles towing the camper it's either the wrong camper or the wrong trailer. I get the not having the budget for a bigger truck, but man, that would suck to not be able to take your camper beyond the local areas.

The toy hauler I'm considering is 1000 lbs less, so hopefully I have a better experience. I'm going to be pissed if I won't feel like I can pull my camper across the country if I want to.

Do keep updating this thread with your experiences.
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Old 04-24-2013, 08:05 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rizzo20 View Post
Seller included Reese friction anti-sway bar and a W/D setup.
Hi Rizzo,

Which model Reese WD/sway hitch are you using? I'm looking for one for an 18' car hauler.

Thanks,

- Spindifferent
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