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Discussion Starter #1
I posted this in the "Truck Uses" forum before I saw this one. I'm reposting it here. To anyone that catches it on both posts, I apologize for the "double-up"



Hello to everyone,

Been planning to purchase a big toy hauler and have been frustrated by the sometimes conflicting and confusing info I'm finding on truck towing and payload capacity. I'm new to both truck and trailer. Not much experience.

I have read several of the forum threads on this this topic (weight ratings and how much you can pull/load in a truck) and ultimately just want to get some educated/experienced input on what I am considering to pull with the truck..

thanks for any personal experience or guidance anyone can give....

I have a 2011 Chev 2500HD Duramax
Interested in getting a Heartland Torque 325SS Toy hauler.

My concern is the varying info and opinions I've read from various posts on how ok I would be with the load this unit will place on the truck.

The toy hauler is 15.5K lbs at max weight rating (11.7K dry). That plus the truck will be under the 24,500 GCWR the truck is rated at for 5th wheel towing. I feel pretty comfortable on this part.

But now let's talk payload.......:mad:

The trailer seems to be pretty pin-heavy. According to Heartlands site;
Home

The Hitch weight for this trailer is 2400lbs. (I assume that is the UNLOADED/DRY pin weight for the trailer. If I'm wrong on that, someone correct me.)

When I originally decided on this truck/trailer it was because I read that my truck has a payload capacity of about 3300lbs. I have since read a bunch more and found that it might be more like 2800 lbs (2500CC LTZ 4x4, stock).
Then today I looked at the stickers inside my truck driver door. I about crapped myself! the Tire and Load sticker states that I should not add more than 2394lbs!!! What the...?

I checked my tires and they are "E" rated Goodyears rated at 1450 per tire. (the stock bright chrome, 5 spoke "star" wheels).

In reading other forum entries I see that lots of others are saying;
  • As long as I don't exceed my RAWR I'm OK
  • The GVWR is an artifical number that GM stuck uses order to keep the 2500 rated as a class 2 vehicle, the truck can take more weight just fine
  • The truck will explode if I exceed the GVWR while towing :)
  • I just need to ensure that the tires and wheels are rated for the load, everything else is fine
  • as long as I don't exceed my RAWR I'm ok.
  • Ignore the GVWR listed for the Duramax model, I can use the GVWR published for the gas engine model, because all the weight the Duramax adds is over the front bumber...
etc. etc.

I just wanted to get some earnest feedback from the forum on if what I want to do with the truck is dangerous/stupid or OK.

Details;

Truck GVWR - 10K
RAWR - 6200
FAWR - 5200
GCWR (5er) - 24.5K
Tire/Load sticker max- 2394lbs
Tire rating - 1450 ea.

Truck cargo -
Me - 200 lbs
wife - 120 lbs
kids - 220 lds
bedliner - 30
Andersen ultimate
Hitch plus rail kit - 120lbs
TOTAL CARGO - 690

Trailer hitch weight (dry) - 2450
TOTAL PAYLOAD (cargo+pin) - 3140


This is below what I originally thought to be the payload capacity of the truck (even with info from some Chevy literature) but obviously WAY above what the truck sticker says is OK.

I've seen others pulling similar trailers with similar trucks (pretty regularly in fact) but don't know if they're just idiots or if I'm not understanding things well.

ALso,
Per the published pin weight of the toy hauler, can I reduce that pin weight by loading things in the toy area at the back of the trailer? I'm super concerned, because I assume a full tank of water plus generator will only add to the published pin weight. How will the pin weight change as I load the unit up?
 

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You're reading the tires wrong. They are over 3k # rated each.
 

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You need to take the truck to a local scale, CAT scales near the interstate are pretty good. Weigh the truck with everything on it, wife, kids, any tools or accessories that will be in the truck during travel, as if you were about to hook up the trailer and go. Take the actual weight on the rear axle with the truck fully equipped and ready to hook up. Subtract that weight from the GAWR and you will have the legal remaining weight capacity for the axle. Yes, adding anything behind the wheels of the trailer will remove weight from the pin, but it becomes a balancing act. Removing to much weight from the pin will make for an ill handling trailer. In GA(and some other states), anything that is 10,001 and higher GVWR, classifies as commercial. Keep in mind that is the weight for the State definition of commercial weight, not federal definition. The axle ratings on your truck would make for different registration and insurance, if they added those together to get the GVWR. I don't believe that it is coincidence that your GVWR is 10k with 11.4k worth of axles. If I were in your shoes, and I wasn't over on any axles/tires, front, rear, and trailer, and the brakes on the trailer were properly adjusted and working, I'd go for it. What makes you feel better about it and what makes others feel better about it aren't always the same. Without the actual weight on the rear axle unloaded, everything else is just a guessing game.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
heymccall;
Thank you. I'll check the tires again. I was a bit concerned by that rating.

GunRok;
Exactly the kind of info I'm looking for.

I'd planned to get the truck on scales to get exact numbers. Even with those numbers it seems obvious to me that I will expected to be over the GVWR rating on the truck, but I expect to be under the axle ratings. With the little experience I have, I just wanted to get an idea of how much weight to give each of those ratings based on how more knowledgeable people would feel if they were in my same situation.

Thanks for the feedback.

One other detail question on the axles and tires;
Does a GAWR take into account only the strength of the axle itself or is it reflective of the wheels and tires that were originally spec'd on the vehicle as well?
 

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heymccall;
Thank you. I'll check the tires again. I was a bit concerned by that rating.

GunRok;
Exactly the kind of info I'm looking for.

I'd planned to get the truck on scales to get exact numbers. Even with those numbers it seems obvious to me that I will expected to be over the GVWR rating on the truck, but I expect to be under the axle ratings. With the little experience I have, I just wanted to get an idea of how much weight to give each of those ratings based on how more knowledgeable people would feel if they were in my same situation.

Thanks for the feedback.

One other detail question on the axles and tires;
Does a GAWR take into account only the strength of the axle itself or is it reflective of the wheels and tires that were originally spec'd on the vehicle as well?
axle rating is the lower of the axle rating itself or the carrying capacity of the tires. Often the axle has a rating higher than the tires.

On my truck, the front axle is limited by the axle, on the rear, I believe it is tire limited.
 

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Multiply the kilograms by 2.2 to get the rating in pounds if it is not stamped on the tire.

See some of my other posts on this subject.

As noted, get the actual weight of the truck rigged and ready. I do wish vehicle sales people would NOT suggest "cargo carrying capacity" unless they are prepared to provide a scale ticket for your truck and their trailer. Otherwise is fraud.

A toy hauler will generally be heavy on the front/pin until you get the toys in the back to counter balance from the front to the trailer axles. But as noted above, a light weight pin on that large of trailer can cause the trailer to steer the truck.

If you don't have experience with any truck and trailer combinations, think about being very prudent when you head out with that rig. Drive it like a heavy hauler. Slow and steady. Have fun.
 

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Depends on the make of TH.. My Forest River XLR 35-12, @ normal loaded for weekending ( no toys) has a pin weight of 2300lbs..My rear axle wt is 5500..(ratd @ 6080).fully loaded somewhere in the 17k range (total of 25080), pin was 2600lb. and rear axle was 5800lb (rounded numbers) Frt axle @ 4600 lb..drug this monstrocity 3000 miles on a cross country move. not one problem in the hills,up or down...Now..my tires are rated @ 3750 each, wheels @ 3200 and am bagged( for bucking purposes )..had it CAT scaled before I started trip...your a few thousand lbs less then my setup...if your not dong any long hauls thru and Dragon Trails you should be fine..
 

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I was in a similar situation with a Crusader 325res and 2003 F250 7.3. I was about 300# over GVWR. I never had a problem truck pulled fine but, in the back of my mind I kept doing the "what if". I don't trust bloodsucking lawyers and knew if I got in an accident even if it wasn't my fault I would get screwed. So I sold the F250 and got the 3500 dually. So it comes down to what you feel comfortable with your truck should do the job. JMHO.

Funny thing was a friend with a 2011 F250 has the same axles springs etc. and his GVWR is about 1000# more than mine was.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
How would I check the load rating of the rims/wheels on my truck?
They're stock chevy wheels, so I imagine they would match at least the rating of the stock tires but would like to verify things...
 

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They are rated at least the axle rating. Most of the time it is stamped on the inside of the wheel.
 

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You should have no problems pulling that trailer.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks again for all of the answers.

So next question....air bags.

I notice IGO1320 shows he is using airbags on his truck. Others as well.

I had intended to go without the airbags to see how the truck carries the load. If the rear dips too much with the trailer pin weight, I'll go have some airbags installed.

From the answers I've gotten on the thread, it looks like several of you could probably just solve this for me up front. Will I need some Airbags?
 

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I would just get the air bags, you will need them and it will make your ride a little bit better when towing. It will squat your truck pretty good.
 

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It's not just "squat". Rough roads will make you bottom the suspension, that's greatly diminished with air bags.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
So wanted to thank everyone for all of the help.

I went ahead last week and bought an RV. I ended up changing from the Torque to a Keystone Carbon and the kids love it.

Can't thank everybody enough for the info and guidance.

Best Regards to all!
 

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You really need some kind of helper springs or airbags. I use the Roadmaster Active suspension springs. They help hold up the load some, but really help with the jerking and axel wrap.
I tried airbags and took them off and put these on. Much better. Bags hold up the weight better but do nothing for the jerking and axel wrap.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks for the info on the airbags too. I talked to a local suspension shop and am going to get airbags with some kind of a wireless remote controller. They're Firestone bags.

Anyone have experience with the wireless compressor and bags? Good way to go?
 

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Thanks for the info on the airbags too. I talked to a local suspension shop and am going to get airbags with some kind of a wireless remote controller. They're Firestone bags.

Anyone have experience with the wireless compressor and bags? Good way to go?
Those that have them swear by them.
 
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