Tow vehicle size?

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Tow vehicle size?

Postby Fishhaggis on Sun Jan 27, 2019 12:32 am

Have a 1500 Ram truck. How big of a Ranger Tug before you need a bigger tow vehicle? Any issues using my half ton 1500 to tow a Ranger Tug?
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby JamesTXSD on Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:28 am

It will depend greatly on what Ram 1500 you have and the tow rating of that particular vehicle. For instance, the standard tow rating on a 2018 Ram 1500 is 4,770 pounds, so you would be looking at an R-21EC. Properly equipped, the tow rating can be as high as 10,620 pounds. Without knowing the specifics of your truck, it would be hard to give you any real advice. A 2014 Ram 1500 Eco-diesel is rated at 9,200 pounds (less than a similarly equipped Hemi engine version).

For some perspective, most folks towing an R-25 or larger recommend a 3/4 ton truck (preferably diesel), at least.

When you narrow down your choice of boat, it would be good to visit with owners of the same boat model to get an idea of what the actual "all up on the trailer" weight is.
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby Crewdog on Sun Jan 27, 2019 8:34 am

Here's the 2018 Ram Truck Towing specs and guide for various combinations.

https://www.ramtrucks.com/content/dam/fca-brands/na/ramtrucks/en_us/towing/2018%20Ram%201500.pdf

And here's a link to page for other years of Ram trucks:
https://www.ramtrucks.com/towing-guide.html

note the fine print at the end of the guide that recommends using a weight distributing hitch for trailers over 5000 lbs.

And be sure and check the sticker on the tow hitch itself for the conventional hitch towing capacity and hitch ratings; might have to crawl down on the ground to look for it underneath the chassis.
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby knotflying on Sun Jan 27, 2019 9:35 am

Anything over and R-21 I would go with a 3/4 ton capacity. You can get by with the larger 8 cylinder gas, but if you plan on doing a lot of towing, especially in mountainous areas, I would go diesel. There is nothing worse than having a tow vehicle that has marginal capacity compared to what you are towing. If you have to make a concession on cost, go used if you have to.
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby jagizzi on Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:54 am

You are going to have to look at your specific truck specs. My 2007 F-150 would tow 6500 lbs. My 2015 is rated at 10,700 lbs. My R23 leaves me enough cushion at 8500 to easily tow anywhere but the 2007 truck would have been over capacity. There is quite a large difference between different models of the same year as well. Look up the specs for your VIN, add 1200 lbs to the boat, 1800 for the trailer and see where things land. I wouldn't want to tow more than 85% of rated capacity for any great distance.
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby jagizzi on Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:55 am

And by the way, that 2015 is a 6 cylinder :-)
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby snydzy on Sun Jan 27, 2019 11:43 am

jagizzi wrote:You are going to have to look at your specific truck specs. My 2007 F-150 would tow 6500 lbs. My 2015 is rated at 10,700 lbs.


Not to ruffle feathers, but the 10,700 lbs capacity is with a weight distribution hitch. The weight carrying max. trailer capacity for an F150 is about 5000 lbs....
https://www.fleet.ford.com/resources/fo ... _May19.pdf
page 28
This is important! I’ve been a big proponent of weight distribution hitches. As others have noted, a 3/4 ton truck is a wise choice,..even for an R23.
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby YukonRon on Sun Jan 27, 2019 12:27 pm

We have an aluminum trailer, and my research indicated that weight distribution hitches are not recommended for aluminum trailers. The weight transfer system puts too much stress on the trailer frame. Just something to consider; if you end up with an aluminum trailer, you could be limited by the standard hitch rating.
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby snydzy on Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:14 pm

Aluminum trailers can use weight distribution hitches. There are different styles. Reese claims their distribution hitches are compatible with aluminum trailers. Checking with your particular trailer manufacturer is a must. This website might help some sort this out: https://campaddict.com/weight-distribution-hitch/
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby Fishhaggis on Sun Jan 27, 2019 2:22 pm

Should have noted my truck can tow just over 10000 pounds. Had a 3/4 ton truck when we had our 30 foot camper. Moved to a 1/2 ton when we got rid of the camper and bought our Thunder Jet.

Retiring in a year or two and hoping to move to Vancouver Island and pick up a 27 or 29 Ranger Tug. Looking at options now. Looks like I leave it in the water or go back to a 3/4 ton.
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby BB marine on Sun Jan 27, 2019 3:50 pm

I have weight distribution bars set with an aluminum trailer. I use the Reese 1200 lbs SC weight distribution hitch. My tow vehicle has a rating of 14500 lbs without bars but I find that the rig tows smoother with the use of the bars.
Image
This was set up with my Tahoe for local towing. I use the same for my 2500.
Image
This is the set up with my 2500. The truck and trailer ride level. The distribution bars distribute weight to the steering Axel. This really is not necessary for HD 3/4 trucks. I have towed without the bars installed and the rig handles fine. With the bars the truck and trailer seem to ride down the road as one, resulting in a smother ride and less sway in wind.

There are trucks that require weight distribution system for max tow capacity.
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby YukonRon on Sun Jan 27, 2019 4:39 pm

snydzy wrote:Aluminum trailers can use SOME weight distribution hitches. /

Ok, I stand corrected. Sort of.
SOME aluminum trailers can use weight distribution hitches.
Which is why i use terms like "my research indicated", "not recommended" or "could be limited".
So, yes, as many have said, carefully check the manufacturers recommendations for each specific piece of equipment you intend to use.
YMMV.
:D
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby PanaSeaAh on Sun Jan 27, 2019 11:28 pm

You are correct that some trailer manufacturers state that equalizer (Weight Distribution) setups should not be used on their equipment. Depends on tongue design, (pole tongue or A frame? Gage? Etc.) I ran Reese WD on my Loadmaster Custom trailer for 12 years with no problem, but it was designed for it and a steel frame.
I'll probably regret going here but for what it is worth, I am towing a 2009 R 25 Classic with a Toyota Tundra, obviously with the 5.7 L engine. A Tundra with the 5.7 L comes with all other towing equipment standard, and is rated for just over or under 10,000 lbs. tow capacity. Toyota rates towing according to SAE standards, which most others do not. A 4.3 rear end and six speed transmission are standard. I have been towing with a Tundra since 2009 with very good results. Previously I was towing a Sea Ray Sundowner on a Loadmaster trailer that weighed about 1,600 pounds more that the R 25 on an aluminum trailer.
We tow about 2,000 miles per year, almost all in Michigan or Ontario. I probably would not take it in the mountains, but other than that, it is very satisfactory.
Incidentally, if you are shopping trailers, crawl under anything with pretty aluminum wheels and look at the weight rating or air pressure max. on the back of the wheels. They will probably not be rated for the trailer they are mounted on.
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby jagizzi on Mon Jan 28, 2019 10:00 am

snydzy wrote:
Not to ruffle feathers, but the 10,700 lbs capacity is with a weight distribution hitch. The weight carrying max. trailer capacity for an F150 is about 5000 lbs....
https://www.fleet.ford.com/resources/fo ... _May19.pdf
page 28
This is important! I’ve been a big proponent of weight distribution hitches. As others have noted, a 3/4 ton truck is a wise choice,..even for an R23.


No worries on ruffling feathers, and they're not ruffled ;-) My truck is equipped with a weight distributing hitch but it is not necessary for the R-23 trailer to be so equipped. The measured tongue weight is 500 lbs which is perfect trim for the truck without distributing weight to the front tires. The F-150 measure body tilt and lean due to the addition of the trailer and displays that information for the driver.

The 5000 lb. limit is for the weight carrying hitch itself but the truck is certainly capable of towing its rated capacity of 10,700 lbs. if properly equipped.
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Re: Tow vehicle size?

Postby YukonRon on Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:50 am

No ruffled feathers here either. I have no problem being told when I'm wrong. :D
We're talking about safety issues; better to throw it out on the table and work it out.
Being wrong and correcting it safely is always better than defending ignorance and regretting it later.
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