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Old 07-10-2014, 11:58 AM   #1
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Travel Trailer Assistance Request

Hello All,

FNG here. I read through the Tacoma Towing Bible and it has been a tremendous help; however, I am now left with a conundrum: what travel trailer to buy. Also I am a true newbie when it comes to towing. While my 06 4x4 Access Cab v6 TRD Off Road comes with a towing package, I bought it used and I don't know what this pigtail is that is being described in the bible thread. Do I need to go find and buy one?

I am in Colorado Springs and am looking to spend 10K on a travel trailer to live aboard for the foreseeable future. I have been looking at several of them, but all the different brands/"made by" labeling has me confused. I confess I know nothing about the brands or their reputations. The more I look into it, the less I feel I know.

That having been said, is there information any of you care to share about what travel trailers are best, with respect to my truck's capacity? Are there brands and/or makes to stay away from? Thanks in advance.

Very Respectfully,

Ll

Edit: I would like to add that I am not married to a travel trailer as a live-aboard. I am open to other RV suggestions as well if there are better solutions out there for the same money. I've never thought about towing my Tacoma behind a larger RV type vehicle, I don't even know if that's possible, tbh.
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Old 07-10-2014, 12:40 PM   #2
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The pig tail people are referring to is the control for electric brakes. If your trailer is over a few thousand lbs you'll want it to have it's own brakes that are controlled from the tow vehicle. If you 06 didn't come with one, you'll want to get one from the dealer.

But we are way ahead of ourselves here. There are an awful lot of types of trailers, let's get some answers from you about what you are going to use it for...

1. Are you going to be living in it alone or with a partner?
2. Is it going to be in one spot or will you be moving around with it?
3. If you will travel with it, will you want to travel off road with it?
4. Is this going to be your full time dwelling or will you be a weekend warrior?

I may have more questions, but tell me what you are looking to do with this trailer first.
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Old 07-10-2014, 01:08 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jethro View Post
The pig tail people are referring to is the control for electric brakes. If your trailer is over a few thousand lbs you'll want it to have it's own brakes that are controlled from the tow vehicle. If you 06 didn't come with one, you'll want to get one from the dealer.

But we are way ahead of ourselves here. There are an awful lot of types of trailers, let's get some answers from you about what you are going to use it for...

1. Are you going to be living in it alone or with a partner?
2. Is it going to be in one spot or will you be moving around with it?
3. If you will travel with it, will you want to travel off road with it?
4. Is this going to be your full time dwelling or will you be a weekend warrior?

I may have more questions, but tell me what you are looking to do with this trailer first.

Thank you for the response jethro. I will attempt to answer your questions the best I can.

1. Are you going to be living in it alone or with a partner? Alone (for now)
2. Is it going to be in one spot or will you be moving around with it? Moving Around (unless I find a campground that I really like and do a monthly there)
3. If you will travel with it, will you want to travel off road with it? Not really (but dirt and gravel roads occasionally may come up)
4. Is this going to be your full time dwelling or will you be a weekend warrior? Full Time Dwelling

Very Respectfully,

ll

Edit: I went out on my lunch and looked at a few trailers in a nearby lot. I got to step inside a 14ft and a 16ft. The 16ft was cutting it close on space. I'd say it's the bare minimum length for me.
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Old 07-10-2014, 05:12 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by liveload View Post
Thank you for the response jethro. I will attempt to answer your questions the best I can.

1. Are you going to be living in it alone or with a partner? Alone (for now)
2. Is it going to be in one spot or will you be moving around with it? Moving Around (unless I find a campground that I really like and do a monthly there)
3. If you will travel with it, will you want to travel off road with it? Not really (but dirt and gravel roads occasionally may come up)
4. Is this going to be your full time dwelling or will you be a weekend warrior? Full Time Dwelling

Very Respectfully,

ll

Edit: I went out on my lunch and looked at a few trailers in a nearby lot. I got to step inside a 14ft and a 16ft. The 16ft was cutting it close on space. I'd say it's the bare minimum length for me.

I would suggest Escape trailers. Specifically their 5th wheel. It is 19' but 3.5 of that is over the bed of the truck so you have the space of a 19' trailer but the overall length of a 15 or 16' trailer.

5th Wheels are more stable than tow behinds because the weight is right over your truck axle. The Escape is one of the only 5th wheels light enough to be towed by the Tacoma. (4000 # GVW) Also you don't have to contend with sway issues or Weight Distribution Hitches, etc. If you can find one used, that would be ideal.

http://escapetrailer.com

Best of luck ....
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Old 07-11-2014, 11:34 AM   #5
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The suggestion of that small 5th wheel is a good one, but it's a specialty trailer and might be tough to find used, let alone under $10k. A 16' would be the bare minimum I would consider for full time accommodations. A 20' would be better but you are going to start getting really close to maxing out the tow vehicle. The Tacomas with a tow package generally are rated at 6500lbs, but me personally, I would want to tow with a full size if it was over 4000 lbs. You really feel like you are beating your truck up if you are towing that much.

We had a Jayco back in the day and it was a great trailer.
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Old 07-11-2014, 08:53 PM   #6
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The thought of a 5th wheel is intriguing. I haven't come across any escape or scamp trailers yet; however, I have come across a few things like this Thor/Tahoe 21MB. What I have found say that thing weighs just under 3900 pounds.
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Old 07-11-2014, 08:57 PM   #7
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The fifth wheel would be the way to go but I'm not sure if there is actually a kit made for the Tacoma. I could be wrong.
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Old 07-19-2014, 08:11 AM   #8
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Check out the scamp fifth wheel. Could be a good fit for you. As far as mounting the receiver their are a couple guys on here that have done custom set ups. Their is not a commercially available setup though.
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Old 07-19-2014, 10:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Check out the scamp fifth wheel. Could be a good fit for you. As far as mounting the receiver their are a couple guys on here that have done custom set ups. Their is not a commercially available setup though.

I've seen those. And while I think one guy done an excellent job of creating the mount he spent a lot of time and money building it. Nothing wrong with that. Not knocking him making something work. The only other thing is from a liability stand point with the way things are now. If in an accident and insurance sees a fifth wheel and finds a homemade setup it might could get iffy. Just my .02$
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Old 07-22-2014, 09:05 AM   #10
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I spent a lot of time running around looking at trailers recently. Finding one that didn't depreciate heavily was not easy, and it seems that a large percentage of trailers are meant for 3/4 ton trucks, not even most 1/2 tons could pull them. So far I've found this trailer and am moving forward with it. I am still looking for a smaller one tho. It seems to be right around 4200 empty weight. Doable I think, but the wear and tear worries me. What do you guys think?

Edit: I'm feeling a lot better about this trailer since I've had a chance to sit a read more threads with people's towing experiences. I don't plan on making a run up Pikes Peak or Trail Ridge with it in tow. The most I'll do is head up to Estes Park and that area, and find a spot to camp.
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Old 07-25-2014, 09:34 AM   #11
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we were in the same boat as you and decided to just go with a pop up. We could not justify the expense of a travel trailer that would be worth less than half of its purchase price in 2-3 years. What we found is the airstreams in the 70's are a good choice. You can find one relatively cheap, put a few thousand into rehabbing it and come out with something worth a whole lot more than you have invested. We are getting ready to start a complete rebuild of a 1976 argosy 26'. The rehab is going to cost us anywhere from 6-8K. We are going to be doing all of the work ourselves. In the end this trailer will be worth 12-15k and will not depreciate over time. In fact vintage airstreams in serviceable condition gain value.

Just food for thought. Of coarse you need to have the time to complete the work yourself. Otherwise you are going to quickly overspend on labor.
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Old 07-28-2014, 10:50 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by liveload View Post
I spent a lot of time running around looking at trailers recently. Finding one that didn't depreciate heavily was not easy, and it seems that a large percentage of trailers are meant for 3/4 ton trucks, not even most 1/2 tons could pull them. So far I've found this trailer and am moving forward with it. I am still looking for a smaller one tho. It seems to be right around 4200 empty weight. Doable I think, but the wear and tear worries me. What do you guys think?

Edit: I'm feeling a lot better about this trailer since I've had a chance to sit a read more threads with people's towing experiences. I don't plan on making a run up Pikes Peak or Trail Ridge with it in tow. The most I'll do is head up to Estes Park and that area, and find a spot to camp.
I did a lot of research as well and that is what led to our purchase of an Aliner Aframe pop-up. It is the "Airstream" of the A-Frame trailers and holds its value. The main advantage of any folding trailer is the gas mileage because of reduced wind resistance when folded under tow. I was able to get 16.5 to 17 MPG on my way back from Indiana to the Seattle area a few weeks ago. They don't come up on the used market much but you should be able to find one in the same 10K price range at the one you linked to above.

See my picts under this link on a different thread. http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/tow...ou-tow-62.html
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Old 07-29-2014, 03:11 PM   #13
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I stayed in a 16 foot Scamp trailer for about 7 months. The trailer only weighed about 1800 lbs and pulled behind my DC SB no problem. However, I would look elsewhere. The fiberglass trailers are very light but the vintage ones at least are very bare minimum for full timers. It was just me and my jack russell and I was feeling a bit closed in after that long, but it worked. I didnt have a bathroom (used camp sites) and the cooking and space was very minimal. Some of the "modern" TT have really come a long way for the price, and I think you should be able to find a sub 20 foot TT for what you want to spend with much more to offer than a vintage style septic tank/Scamp style TT.
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Old 07-31-2014, 01:07 PM   #14
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Thanks for the replies thus far guys! It is much appreciated.

I checked out the A-frames and the Scamps nearby. I really like the A-frames and if I wasn't going to be living in it full time, I'd seriously consider one. They're a really good concept for Colorado.

The scamp just didn't feel like I could stay sane inside of one. I don't know what it is about that "septic tank" shape (lol), but I feel claustrophobic inside Airstreams and Scamps. I halfway expect a random T-Rex to show up and attempt to make a morsel out of the conveniently shaped object.

Unless something drastic happens I am going to be picking up the 24ft Carson Fun Runner toy-hauler, an Equal-I-Zer 90-00-1200 hitch, and either a Prodigy 2 or Primus IQ controller (haven't picked up the controller yet).

It's going to be a looong weekend!

I'll update this thread with more information about how everything went soon.
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Old 08-06-2014, 02:53 PM   #15
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Cool

We made it! From Hurricane, Utah up I-15, then onto I-70 to Denver. Took lots of rest breaks (easy to do with comfy trailer behind you) to let the truck cool and myself to remain rested and fully alert. Thanks to all for their assistance.
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