Trailer experts - need more advice - the move is near!

BigDanSBigDanS Senior MemberPosts: 6,636 Senior Member
I will be on the road to Oregon about May 9th.  I have been absent lately because I have diligently been packing, selling and moving stuff over the past month.

My rig seems pretty solid.  I have 2005 Tundra double cab, v8, towing kit with lower rear end gears, posi traction 2wd, new brakes, etc. The truck has a GVWR of 6600 lbs and is 5100 lbs empty.  The max trailer towing capacity is 7000, but the Combined gross vehicle weight rating is 11,800 lbs. I have a Reese weight distribution hitch setup, with a class 4 hitch.

Trailer weighs in at 2200 lbs, has dual 3500 lb axles and has 4 wheel brakes.

Based on what I know, 11,800 - 5100 - 2200 = 4500 lbs maximum weight in the cab, the truck bed and in the trailer, total.

Me, the dog and my luggage and snacks will easily be 350 lbs in the cab.

My questions are as follows:

1. If the vehicle GVWR is 6600 lbs and the dry weight is 5100 lbs, I have a capacity of 1500 lbs in the vehicle. If I have 500 lbs of tongue weight, have I just lowered the capacity from 1500 lbs of stuff in and on the vehicle to 1000?

2. How much can I load in the bed of the truck weight wise, safely. I am guessing no more than 500 lbs of stuff?

3. My truck does not list anywhere I can find the effect a weight distribution hitch has on tongue weight.   Am I limited to 500 lbs?  The Reese hitch is a 10,000 lb hitch system and far exceeds the truck's capacity. The hitch weighs in around 100 lbs configured. I am guessing this lowers my contents ability by 100 lbs? I know it does not affect tongue weight.

Here is my understanding:

Truck and trailer weigh in at 7300 lbs, and maximum weight is 11,800 lbs

Total allowable weight 4500 lbs max load in cab, truck bed and trailer.

Weight inside the truck cab will be under 400 lbs.

Weight in the truck bed 500 lbs

This means I can load a maximum of 3600 lbs load in the trailer with a 500 lb tongue weight?

Thanks in advance for your insights.

D
"A patriot is mocked, scorned and hated; yet when his cause succeeds, all men will join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." Mark Twain
Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.... now who's bringing the hot wings? :jester:
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Replies

  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 1,246 Senior Member
    You're over thinking. Hook and go. Focus on proper snacks in the cooler and relaxing music. Enjoy the drive.

    Wiper blades?
    Sun glasses?

    🚚
  • JermanatorJermanator Senior Member Posts: 14,038 Senior Member
    You are fine and then some.

    Combined, the truck and trailer are rated at 13,600 (truck 6600+ trailer 7000= 13,600). Subtract the combined truck and trailer weight which is truck 5100+ trailer 2200= 7300 pounds and you get 6300 left for you, the dog and cargo.

    Ain't no thing. Relax.
  • Old RonOld Ron Senior Member Posts: 1,953 Senior Member
    Wow Dan you have put a ton of thought in moving stuff.
    I have drug trailers full of stuff coast to coast & never really thought about it. I keep my weights over the axles so it doesn't fish tail at 60mph if it does then I pull over & adjust the loads. It sounds like you have a big enough rig that you should have no problems.
    I realize this is not advice .....just a comment. Best of luck with your move.
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 695 Senior Member

    1.  Yes the tongue weight counts against your 1,500 lb payload in your truck.

    2.  I think you are on the right track with limiting yourself to 500 lbs. of stuff.  1,500 - 500 tongue weight - 400 in the cab - 100 for the hitch = 500.

    3.  Everything that is in/on the truck that was not factory installed counts against the payload, so yes, you have to count the weight of the hitch.  Unless there is documentation indicating that the weight distributing hitch increases the allowed tongue weight, you have to assume it does not.  Just one question to really mess up your calculations......did you figure in the weight of a full tank of gas?

  • JermanatorJermanator Senior Member Posts: 14,038 Senior Member
    We buy 5 tons (10,000 pounds) of crushed concrete just about every day, sometimes several times a day and haul it in our dump trailer. There is no way in hell you are going to fit 3 tons (6000 pounds) of weight inside your truck/trailer combo even if your cargo is crushed concrete.
  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 1,246 Senior Member
    edited April 14 #7
    Windex and newsprint paper will clean the inside of a windshield with no streaks.

    Just thought I'd throw that in.🏃
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 695 Senior Member
    One more thing to consider, how much weight are your tires rated for?  And at what PSI?  When we bought a 2010 Suburban last year to tow our travel trailer it had a brand new set of very nice Michelins on it that I had to replace.  They did not have the load range rating that I needed.  I got less than half what those tires were worth in a trade-in, but now the Suburban has a set of BF Goodrich KO2's that I know I can trust for heavy hauling. 
  • FisheadgibFisheadgib Senior Member Posts: 5,162 Senior Member
    Yer gonna die! Seriously, the load ratings of vehicles is based on what you can stop, not on what you can get moving.
    snake284 wrote: »
    For my point of view, cpj is a lot like me
    .
  • JermanatorJermanator Senior Member Posts: 14,038 Senior Member
    My thing is to do 60/40. 60% in front of the axles and 40% behind them. Dan.... they way you think... no, you do not have to weigh this stuff out. Just make sure you have a bit of weight on the tongue as opposed to the rear. I drove the 70 miles from Flint to Detroit with a back weighted trailer.... I could have made diamonds with my butt! Shift the load forward so you have some front weight on the trailer. If the truck springs are level you are pretty much at your load limit.

    Sunday I am headed to Maryland from Michigan to pick up an unknown weight load with a 10,000 gvwr truck and a 14,000 gvwr trailer. My empty weight is around 11,000 pounds including my fat ass and a cooler. My concern is not about the load I am picking up and hauling, but the 20 hours of very boring driving I have to do.
  • Farm Boy DeuceFarm Boy Deuce Senior Member Posts: 5,965 Senior Member
    One more thing to consider, how much weight are your tires rated for?  And at what PSI?  When we bought a 2010 Suburban last year to tow our travel trailer it had a brand new set of very nice Michelins on it that I had to replace.  They did not have the load range rating that I needed.  I got less than half what those tires were worth in a trade-in, but now the Suburban has a set of BF Goodrich KO2's that I know I can trust for heavy hauling. 
    The tires figure into the “rated” capacity of the pickup. So if Dan is running the factory recommended tires or a decent equivalent he is , in theory, good to go. 

    That said P series tires are lacking in side wall stiffness when you get a trailer close or at “rated capacity.” LT series, load range D or E, tires will have better road manners 
    I am afraid we forget sometime that the basic and simple things brings us the most pleasure.
    Dad 5-31-13
  • Old RonOld Ron Senior Member Posts: 1,953 Senior Member
    I found with the LT tires they have 2 ply sides & that works but really isn't enough for corners with a load on so I went to 4 ply & took care of that soft twists.
  • BigDanSBigDanS Senior Member Posts: 6,636 Senior Member
    edited April 14 #13
    For Fisheadgib, just to confirm it, yes I am probably overthinking things.  That's what I do on most projects, and this is a big one for me.  I have been applying mental energy to it for over a year.

    Thanks all.  The truck tires are Michelin LT's and I am going to replace the trailer tires with 4 ply radials that are over rated for the load. The current trailer tires are 6 years old and I am more worried about rot that anything else.

    This will be my first long distance trip with a trailer of this type.  My current route leaves, Miami, to Sarasota to visit family, then through Pensacola, St. Louis,  the mid part of the USA, through Nebraska, Wyoming, Idaho, and finally Portland.  I have budgeted 8 days for the trip.  I am counting on about 10 MPG and with my 26 gallon tank I will be stopping every three hours or so.  Total distance is about 3500 miles, and I plan on about 500 miles a day, and about 400 a day through the Rockies.  My Tundra owners manual recommends I tow with the overdrive off, which will kill my MPG.  I am tempted in the flat areas to leave it on and turn it off on the hills.  Anyone have experience with this?  I figure at least 350 gallons of gas.  

    My 1st Generation Tundra is made with a lot of Tacoma components and is what I call a 3/4 sized truck.  If I was driving a newer full sized Toyota, Dodge, Ford or a Chevy I would not have any issues with this haul.  However, my truck is now 13 years old, and although it has just 95,000 miles on it, this will be a stress on it like I have never tried.  The Tundra owners forum is full of people that say the towing limits for this truck are real, and to not exceed recommended maximums.  I will be testing the limits on a 13 year old truck for 8 days in both flat an mountainous conditions.

    As far as loading goes, I have over 1000 lbs in just tools and shop stuff.  Steel adds up fast, and is compact.  My other stuff is also dense, like books and paper. I have no doubt I have over 4000 lbs to move.   The 4000 lbs I move myself will save me $4000 in movers costs, and more than pays for the trailer.  ( the movers are taking about 15,000 lbs of stuff. )  I will sell the trailer  on the west coast, eventually.  If I am honest, while nervous about becoming homeless and pulling up stakes, I am having fun planning and of course, calculating, 

    One thing I have been figuring out is lodging along the way.  The obsessive in me wants to plan every night from the time I leave, but I think I am going to wing it each night and make a new reservation down the road for the following night, each night.  If I find I can make 700 miles one day, I can do that, but I anticipate keeping it around 60 mph the entire trip.  Given the length of this trip, I really do not want to spend more than 10 hours a day in the truck. 

    A note to others, moving, my homeowners policy covers my contents in the trailer, but it is unclear what happens if the trailer is stolen.  I have asked for a clarification from the insurance company.  If the trailer is on your property and is stolen it is covered, and contents.  It is clearly stated that if it is damaged or stolen while moving they are not liable.  I have Geico coverage for that.  I am trying to make sure the contents are also insured.  

    D




    "A patriot is mocked, scorned and hated; yet when his cause succeeds, all men will join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." Mark Twain
    Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.... now who's bringing the hot wings? :jester:
  • zorbazorba Senior Member Posts: 16,278 Senior Member
    Different strokes for different folks!

    13 years old? Its brand new!

    I never lock myself into a schedule by making reservations.

    Back in the day, I would put my **** in OD when towing on the flat with no headwind. Get even a mild hill or mild headwind, I'd take it out. That was with a GM 700R4 transmission, not exactly their best success story yet I had no problems. YMMV with the Tundra.

    6 year old tires are nothing - UNLESS they're on a trailer. You're probably right, they're probably rotten or well on their way.
    -Zorba, "The Veiled Male"

    Carry a 25 if it makes you feel good, but do not ever load it. If you load it, you may shoot it. If you shoot it, you may hit somebody, and if you hit somebody – and he finds out about it – he may be very angry with you. --Jeff Cooper
  • Farm Boy DeuceFarm Boy Deuce Senior Member Posts: 5,965 Senior Member
    Dan it does not matter, mpg wise, if you use OD on the flats and downhill runs. Your gas mileage will be garbage. 

    The gear selection will will be up to you. Your pickup may now like pulling the trailer in OD. If on flat ground you have a hard time maintaining your desired speed without the pickup downshifting don’t try to force it. Just put it in 3rd and rock on. That engine won’t mind the revs. 
    I am afraid we forget sometime that the basic and simple things brings us the most pleasure.
    Dad 5-31-13
  • FisheadgibFisheadgib Senior Member Posts: 5,162 Senior Member
    I would heed the manufacturers advice and Leave the overdrive off with a load. Overdrive with a heavy load will put a lot more strain on the transmission and make it run much hotter and reduce the life of the transmission. A few extra dollars for gas is cheaper than a failed transmission.
    snake284 wrote: »
    For my point of view, cpj is a lot like me
    .
  • jaywaptijaywapti Senior Member Posts: 4,207 Senior Member
    I would advise you not to tow in OD, you know my Dodge truck, its rated for far more towing capacity than your Toyota, I burned up my **** pulling a 5000 lb. boat in OD in the flatlands.

    JAY
    THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 12,602 Senior Member
    1. Don't tow in overdrive.
    2. If you get in the double digits for gas mileage, I will be surprised. 
    Overkill is underrated.
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 9,991 Senior Member
    Before I would spend a year trying to work this all out, I would have spent a few days trying to figure out how to pay for a professional moving company to handle the whole deal. Worrying about stuff is not worth it to me. Instead, I will work at something I already know, to earn the money needed to eliminate worry about the unknown.
  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 37,645 Senior Member
    Replace the trailer tires, don't tow in overdrive. Quit being a nervous Nelly. You'll give yourself high blood pressure. 
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 12,602 Senior Member
    Also, follow Jerm's advice about weight balance. 
    Overkill is underrated.
  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 1,246 Senior Member
    Don't forget your travel mug☕
  • CHIRO1989CHIRO1989 Senior Member Posts: 9,686 Senior Member
    Don't forget your travel mug☕

    Or the Pizza Pretzel Combos, beef jerky, and some minty gum to offset the taste in your mouth;) 
    I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn away from their ways and live. Eze 33:11
  • PFDPFD Senior Member Posts: 1,197 Senior Member
    edited April 14 #24
    BigDanS said:


    This will be my first long distance trip with a trailer of this type.  My current route leaves, Miami, to Sarasota to visit family, then through Pensacola, St. Louis,  the mid part of the USA, through Nebraska, Wyoming, Idaho, and finally Portland.  I have budgeted 8 days for the trip.
    I'm about an hour north of Seattle just off of I5.
    Just the Mrs. & I & we have 3 beds and a bath that never get used. . . . maybe a little gun maintenance.
    You're welcome to spend the night, do some laundry, grab a meal or give me a holler if you break down
    Paul
    That's all I got.

    Paul
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,080 Senior Member
    edited April 14 #25

    I've been towing various types of trailers since the late 1960's, and I've probably violated all the rules of thumb for safe towing.  Blind luck is not a substitute for good planning and preparation.  I've had more than my fair share of "max pucker factor" moments when I got a little overconfident. 

    Your trailer needs to be loaded with approximately 10% of its gross weight on the hitch ball.  Your load leveler hitch will transfer that weight equally to all four wheels of the tow vehicle if it's set up properly.  Be careful that you don't overdo the weight transfer, as it can take too much load off the drive axle and cause the trailer to push the tow rig sideways during a stop with the vehicle in a slight turn.  That gets downright frightening, and can result in a jackknife situation you can't recover from.  If the trailer starts to sway, resist the urge to nail the brake pedal- - - -it only makes things worse.  Lock down HARD on the trailer brake manual control and give the tow vehicle full throttle to pull the trailer back in line.  It's counter-intuitive to do that, but it works.  Once the sway stops, then gently come to a straight stop and check your skivvies for stinky lumps!  Adjust the sensitivity on the brake control so you can almost, but not quite lock up the trailer brakes with the manual knob.

    Jerry

          

    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 1,246 Senior Member
    Nothing quite so alarming as the sight of the back of yer trailer in the rearview mirror.👀🐵🐒
  • zorbazorba Senior Member Posts: 16,278 Senior Member
    My late father left Messina, NY in 1959 towing a 29 foot house trailer with a '48 GMC carryall - 3 on the tree, straight 6. He went south to somewhere around Virginia, then turned right to head across the country to California. Somewhere about Virginia, the brakes went out on the tow vehicle. He just kept on going, using the trailer brakes only to stop, didn't fix the truck brakes until he got to California. He told me that he had to issue a 6 weeks written notice in triplicate to that rig that he intended to stop it - it took 1.2 forevers! He traded the carryall off on a '53 1 ton Dodge pickup shortly thereafter, he said starting the carryall out moving that trailer - especially if it was on an uphill grade - the truck would shimmy, shake, chug, blow smoke, bang around, but it would get it moving eventually!

    Compare that to the brouhaha I saw recently on a motorhome forum about pansies who won't even change a tire!
    -Zorba, "The Veiled Male"

    Carry a 25 if it makes you feel good, but do not ever load it. If you load it, you may shoot it. If you shoot it, you may hit somebody, and if you hit somebody – and he finds out about it – he may be very angry with you. --Jeff Cooper
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 695 Senior Member

    The smaller the tow vehicle, the larger the pucker factor.  Last year I bought a travel trailer with the intent to tow it with my 2010 GMC Canyon.  The 4,351 lb. dry weight of the trailer is well under the 5,500 lb. tow rating on the truck.  Even though it is a compact truck, power is not an issue since it has a 5.3L V8 stuffed under the hood.  The trailer has brakes and I bought a weight distributing hitch with sway control.  After towing it a couple of times with that truck I was so unimpressed with the performance that I bought a Suburban to tow the trailer with.  It has the same engine as the Canyon but the extra curb weight and wheelbase of the Suburban make a huge difference.  Power and stopping ability were not the issue, handling was.  Towing with your first generation Tundra will be more entertaining than with a true full-size truck.

  • BigDanSBigDanS Senior Member Posts: 6,636 Senior Member
    The good news is the trailer is only 16 '11" from tongue to tail, and 14 ft inside with a V nose.  Since it is a low rider  trailer it sticks out above the truck roofline by just 5 inches.  Although it is 8' 6" from outside wheel edge to outside wheel edge the trailer box itself is just 7 feet wide.  When I sized the trailer I was mindful of it sticking out of the truck's windstream, so the trailer only sticks out a bit.  The truck is 80 inches wide and the trailer is 84 wide.  The truck is 75 inches high and the trailer is just 80 inches.  I am hopeful the slip stream effect will also help keep it on track.  I have an anti sway kit, but I have not installed it yet. 

    I has totalling my load weights today and I am just over the limits.  I need to send more with the movers and have a bit of safety margin.

    D


    "A patriot is mocked, scorned and hated; yet when his cause succeeds, all men will join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." Mark Twain
    Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.... now who's bringing the hot wings? :jester:
  • BigDanSBigDanS Senior Member Posts: 6,636 Senior Member
    edited April 15 #30
    Here is the rig.  I have since added frame mounts for the weight distribution on the trailer, and raised the hitch ball two inches. Not sure yet, but I might add another 2 inches before the haul.  When all is said and done, I figure the truck, the dog, my stuff and me will weigh in about 6000 lbs.  The trailer, and load will be about 5500 lbs.




    "A patriot is mocked, scorned and hated; yet when his cause succeeds, all men will join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." Mark Twain
    Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.... now who's bringing the hot wings? :jester:
  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 1,246 Senior Member
    This time of year, maybe there won't be a million bugs stuck to it at the other end.🐝🐜🐞
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