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Too much to tow - or just ok?

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by sechsgang, May 22, 2011.

  1. May 22, 2011 at 8:49 AM
    #1
    sechsgang

    sechsgang [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Hi everybody!
    I have an '06 V6 6spd. dbl cab short bed 4x4 with the towing package. We currently tow a pop up camper (12' box, probably ~ 1,800lbs empty).
    Now we are looking at upgrading to this: Link. It's a 21' Hybrid Travel Trailer, dry weight 4,182lbs, GVWR 5,743lbs. I think that realistically we'd be towing it at right around 5,000lbs. I would never be towing water around.
    We are talking about 4-6 camping trips per year, most 1-2 hours drive, but maybe one that's a 4-5 hour trip.
    The trailer would of course have breaks, and I'd be using a weight distributing hitch with sway control.
    One more detail that may or may not be important: I have 1" blocks in the rear, and 5100's at 1.75" in the front.
    What do the experts here think? My gut feeling is: on the edge. Opinions?
     
  2. May 22, 2011 at 9:57 AM
    #2
    762x51taco

    762x51taco Well-Known Member

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    Well at 5k your still 1.5k under the rated capacity, and figuring that engineering accounts for a certain percent under the actual weight the truck will pull I say you will be fine. I would look in the towing section cause there is a lot of people that are towing similar stuff with your same specs.
     
  3. May 22, 2011 at 11:31 AM
    #3
    sechsgang

    sechsgang [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks 762x51!
    I just realized that there is a dedicated towing section, should have posted it there. If a mod reads this - please go ahead and move this thread to the towing section.
     
  4. May 22, 2011 at 9:35 PM
    #4
    travelingman

    travelingman What would Scooby do?

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    You'll be fine.
     
  5. May 26, 2011 at 9:27 AM
    #5
    j4x4ar3

    j4x4ar3 Well-Known Member

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    +1 you'll be fine. I tow a 26' travel trailer (not hybrid) that weighs 4300# unloaded. I'm about 5500# loaded. Slow on the grades though and let'er rev over 3.5k to get the best performance if you're climbing and she'll do just fine.
     
  6. Jun 2, 2011 at 7:34 AM
    #6
    sechsgang

    sechsgang [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks everybody! I think we'll go for it!
    j4x4ar3, do you have a picture of that 26 footer behind the Tacoma? That must look cool!
     
  7. Jun 2, 2011 at 7:42 AM
    #7
    97yota4wd

    97yota4wd Well-Known Member

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    x4 you will be fine towing that! but you can also think about getting air bags too if you sag alot with the trailer. just a thought!
     
  8. Jun 2, 2011 at 7:33 PM
    #8
    j4x4ar3

    j4x4ar3 Well-Known Member

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    Old photo from one of the first trips. It's unhitched in the photo. I've got some newer photos with my mountain bikes in the bed but I haven't uploaded them to photobucket yet.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Jun 3, 2011 at 6:25 AM
    #9
    sechsgang

    sechsgang [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks 97Yota4wd. I got Timbrens installed (they work very well) and will also get a good WDH with sway control. I hope that the combination of those things will do the trick.

    Awesome, thanks j4x4ar3! Looks more reasonable than I thought, I got to say (I mean the trailer length behind our truck). If you get to uploading more pics - I'd be very interested. Which trailer is that? Looks nice. Also, are you using a WDH? Which mirrors?
    Sorry about all the questions, and thanks for your posts!
     
  10. Jun 3, 2011 at 10:15 AM
    #10
    skytower

    skytower Well-Known Member

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    I used the timbrens, which worked out fine for towing. They make the ride a little more harsh unloaded. A weight distribution system would work instead, or air bags(as mentioned before)
    Just make sure you have a sway control for the trailer, or the tail will wag the dog.
     
  11. Jun 3, 2011 at 10:23 AM
    #11
    kmok

    kmok Plastidipped ma Hootus!

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    Maybe swap out the blocks in the rear for an AAL. The AAL will help with load capacity and you wouldn't have to worry about the blocks failing on you.
     
  12. Jun 3, 2011 at 11:12 AM
    #12
    bjmoose

    bjmoose Bullwinkle J. Moose

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    X2 on swap block for 2" AAL - put a little rake back in so it's "level" when towing, not when empty.
     
  13. Jun 3, 2011 at 12:02 PM
    #13
    sechsgang

    sechsgang [OP] Well-Known Member

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    There is a little rake in there right now, and when I am towing and loaded for camping I am actually level with the Timbrens and the TSB
    I would of course add a WDH with sway control. You guys think those 1" blocks could actually fail? I am towing our popup now without a WDH, the tongue weight is around 400lbs, probably more than on the new trailer with a WDH.
     
  14. Jun 3, 2011 at 12:13 PM
    #14
    cc350

    cc350 Buckeye Member

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    With the Timbrens you shouldn't need the WD hitch. Just add sway control and you'll be fine. I tow a 19ft Mallard w/4590 lbs 450lb TW. Trailer and Truck sit level. If you do go for the WD hitch be sure!! to get one the weight size to match trailer weight 6k max. If not it will ride like crap (stiff)
     
  15. Jun 3, 2011 at 12:14 PM
    #15
    cc350

    cc350 Buckeye Member

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    BTW I also run Timbrens.
     
  16. Jun 3, 2011 at 2:21 PM
    #16
    skytower

    skytower Well-Known Member

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    Hitch and wiring, aux back-up light, rear strobe lights, radio and underseat sub.
    Didn't see you had the timbrens.
    Tage your loaded rig to the scales. If you're not over on any of your ratings, don't bother with the WDH.
    I hauled a 12' u-haul trailer for 500 miles. I didn't have a sway controller, but could manage without. Couldn't go over 55 without excessive sway. I wouldn't go much more than that anyway.
    I only have the timbrens and stock springs. It handled fine, but was slow through W Virginia. You'll be fine, just keep it slow and follow far... :)
     
  17. Jun 3, 2011 at 2:30 PM
    #17
    sechsgang

    sechsgang [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks skytower!
    I have an interesting piece of information here: I actually went to the scales (our dump) last weekend, fully loaded for camping, full tank, firewood, popup in tow and the whole family aboard.
    My GCWR was ok: 7,950lbs (the truck is rated at 11,000lbs). But: the rear axle was 200lbs over limit! Ouch. I think a WDH would be a good idea to keep it safe.
    The new trailer has an empty weight that's about 2,000lbs higher than the popup, so that would put me at about 10,000lbs GCW. Should be ok. But A WDH is probably a good idea.
    Even while being overweight on the rear axle, the truck was about level and the ride was not too rough. Those Timbrens are truly awesome. They are doing a great job, are inexpensive and there is nothing on them to really ever break. These last two "features" set them apart from airbags imo.
    I still have all axle weights on a piece of paper in my glove box, let me know if the details would help.

    Has anybody ever heard of a 1" block breaking while towing? I mean, the same blocks are used on trucks that put more weight on them empty than I do fully loaded, with a lot more engine power as well. I am not wheeling the truck at all, so I think the blocks are ok. No?
     
  18. Jun 3, 2011 at 2:35 PM
    #18
    skytower

    skytower Well-Known Member

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    Yea. Over limits on a regular basis is a bad thing. Hope you can get it even. How much do you have free on the front axle?
     
  19. Jun 3, 2011 at 2:47 PM
    #19
    sechsgang

    sechsgang [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Here are the numbers from last weekend:
    GCWR: 7,960 (allowed 11,000)
    front: 2,400 (allowed 2,755)
    rear: 3,380 (allowed 3,110)
    trailer axle: 2,180

    So I was 270lbs over on the rear axle. Ouch.
    The good thing about the new trailer is that it's a dual axle, whereas the popup is single axle. Any load in the popup sits before the axle, and I expect the new trailer's tongue weight to actually be lower than the popup after loading gear. The added weight would all be on the trailers axle.
    Yeah, a WDH is a must on our trucks when towing anything heavy because the rear can't take much. I don't know for sure, but my guess is that the tongue weight on that trip was > 500lbs. The trailer's empty rating is 325lbs tongue weight, and I have an extra gas bottle up front, an electric lift, a bigger battery and gear in the trailer forward of the axle.
     
  20. Jun 3, 2011 at 3:13 PM
    #20
    TacoGK

    TacoGK Making changes is always fun

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    I see alot of people pulling boats, campers, trailers with their Tacomas that should probably been pulled by a 3/4 ton truck. I do think that your Tacoma should pull the TT ok. IMPO and with what I have been told there is a safety factor built in and you can actually tow more than what the manufacture says it will tow. Just realize that your pop up has less wind resistance than a TT would and that will have a big effect on how it will pull and handle. My boat and my pop up weight in about the same thing around 4000# and my boat is harder to tow. I have to pull it in 4th gear vs 5th gear if I want to run any faster than 55 MPH. I wouldnt want to pull anything heavier than what I am currently towing because It causes the truck to have to work to hard. here is a picture of my boat and you can see my Pop up in the back ground under the carport.


    100_2644.jpg
     
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