For all those towing trailers...

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Postby ygmir » Fri Aug 13, 2010 3:17 pm

unjonharley wrote:Hooking up those trailer lights and there dim???

Spit in the recesses of the plugs..


or a bad ground
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Postby ygmir » Fri Aug 13, 2010 3:24 pm

just done servicing my car trailer.
I built it myself, so, it may be heavier than Gyre would approve......but,
2 7K lb torsion suspension axles, e-brakes on both.
225/70-16 LR-E tires.
16' flat deck, 8'6" wide, 6'tongue, 2-9/16 ball hitch.

I pulled all 4 wheels and hubs, cleaned all loose rust and dust, slight lube on the hinge points for the brakes, cleaned the magnets, re-greased and re-set the bearings.

I have no swaybar/loadlevelers on it, and it tows just fine.
I've hauled up to 8K lbs payload.
I think, the key, is knowing how to load a trailer.
Loaded properly, you get little or no sway or bounce.....at least, that's my experience. YMMV

Just sayin', there are many ways to do things, many methods.
Just make sure, you feel good about the one you choose.
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Postby gyre » Fri Aug 13, 2010 3:42 pm

Nice maintenance.

How heavy is it?

It's all relative.

I've towed loads with a trailer heavier than the load.
You should see the one I use for hauling steel!
NO SUSPENSION!!!!
Scary too.
My light trailer is very strong for it's size, with a three dimensional tube frame.

It starts to really matter when you have a limited capacity on the tow vehicle.
The trailex can allow a small vehicle to tow a car, rather than be replaced at heavy cost.
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Postby EB » Thu Aug 19, 2010 4:25 pm

Updated link to the LA TIMES story referenced in the original post (link was DOA.)

Read the story here
Irony. You're soaking in it.
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Postby sambojones » Thu Aug 19, 2010 11:39 pm

is there any way for me to figure out what kind of mpg i'll get towing a trailer this will be my first time towing a long distance i have a 4 x 10 double axle open utility trailer it seems pretty heavy duty i only plan to load up about 500 pounds of it for my drive from dallas to reno and then from reno we'll pick up around 250 lbs of water plus our food and beer so maybe 1000 lbs for the last leg of the journey... i drive a lexus ls430 with a big v8 in it i think it's the same v8 that was in the tundra... i usually get around 28-29 mpg highway when i'm cruising so i'm just trying to figure what i'll get towing around 1500-2k lbs
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Postby capjbadger » Thu Aug 19, 2010 11:49 pm

EB wrote:Updated link to the LA TIMES story referenced in the original post (link was DOA.)

Read the story here

Thanks EB. Always good to give myself a healthy scare before driving the trailer out there. Keeps me from doing stupid shit. :)

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Postby capjbadger » Thu Aug 19, 2010 11:51 pm

sambojones wrote:is there any way for me to figure out what kind of mpg i'll get towing a trailer this will be my first time towing a long distance i have a 4 x 10 double axle open utility trailer it seems pretty heavy duty i only plan to load up about 500 pounds of it for my drive from dallas to reno and then from reno we'll pick up around 250 lbs of water plus our food and beer so maybe 1000 lbs for the last leg of the journey... i drive a lexus ls430 with a big v8 in it i think it's the same v8 that was in the tundra... i usually get around 28-29 mpg highway when i'm cruising so i'm just trying to figure what i'll get towing around 1500-2k lbs

Figure 6-12mpg less to start. You'll figure it out after your first fillup.
Also depends on your route. I have to climb Donner Pass. If your route is flat, you'll still get pretty good mpg once you're up to speed.

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Postby gyre » Fri Aug 20, 2010 7:01 am

Air drag is often the biggest factor.

You could take a short trip, 100-200 miles to figure mileage.
Or do a coastdown comparison.

A vehicle that isn't very reactive to speed, will be with a trailer.
And you will probably want to stay out of lockup too, with an automatic.
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Postby ygmir » Fri Aug 20, 2010 7:54 am

estimating mileage is so problematic, IMHO, for this.
you have to account for terrain, traffic, wind/resistance (good point, Gyre, especially at highway speeds), speed.........
I'd agree with the good Capjbadger. It's better to underestimate and be surprised by more economy.........IMHO.


I tested my trailer yesterday:
7K lb Ford 10 ton dually diesel on it, 12' of 3' dia. steel pipe. hauled them about 100 miles, gaining 2500' of altitude in the last 40 miles, up and down hills and canyons.

all worked well, the tires and rims got sort of warm, but ,a hot day and large load, seemed withing specs.

to answer your previous question Gyre:
the trailer weighs about 2500 lbs.


I get about 8 mpg under these conditions. Mine is a 93 Dodge, W350 dually, diesel engine, auto trans.
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Postby Bling » Fri Aug 20, 2010 8:00 am

Our Yukon can get 20-22 mpg/highway. When we tow our trailer, which is 9' tall and weighs ~4,500 lbs., even with a wind deflector, we're lucky to get 10--if it's pretty flat.
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Postby gyre » Fri Aug 20, 2010 9:10 am

ygmir wrote:I tested my trailer yesterday:
7K lb Ford 10 ton dually diesel on it, 12' of 3' dia. steel pipe. hauled them about 100 miles, gaining 2500' of altitude in the last 40 miles, up and down hills and canyons.

all worked well, the tires and rims got sort of warm, but ,a hot day and large load, seemed withing specs.

to answer your previous question Gyre:
the trailer weighs about 2500 lbs.


I get about 8 mpg under these conditions. Mine is a 93 Dodge, W350 dually, diesel engine, auto trans.

Not bad, considering.
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Postby crstophr » Fri Aug 20, 2010 10:49 am

Mine is a 93 Dodge, W350 dually, diesel engine


Mine's a 93, W350 dually, extended cab, 5.9l CT Diesel as well :P Although I have the 5spd.

Fully loaded with 23' TT in tow, 110Gal water, 30 gal gasoline, generators, tools, gear, etc. Combined weight of about 14-15k lbs. I get 13-14MPG.

--Chris
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Postby missariel » Fri Aug 20, 2010 11:03 am

Hi everyone!
I've been lurking on this board, specifically this post, for a while now, and I finally decided to come out and play.
This will be my fourth year on the playa, but my first year with a trailer. So far, it seems like this advice is geared towards people who own trailers, I'm wondering if you all could give some tips to those of us unfortunate enough to rent uhaul trailers.

I have a 96 GMC Jimmy, in very good condition for its age. It has done a good deal of towing, unfortunately never with me though. We will be renting a 5x8 trailer. I have read through this whole thread, and so far I have learned to slow the fuck down. done. It also seems like tire pressure/bearings/brakes should be checked, my car needs to be heavier than the trailer etc. What I'm really interested in are things to ask uhaul to check before I leave the lot. Things that a novice like me may overlook. I will be checking the trailer often, driving painfully slow the whole way, etc. paranoia seems to pay off at times!

Anyway, tips specifically for rented trailers would be really appreciated.
thank you all!
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Postby ygmir » Fri Aug 20, 2010 12:05 pm

crstophr wrote:
Mine is a 93 Dodge, W350 dually, diesel engine


Mine's a 93, W350 dually, extended cab, 5.9l CT Diesel as well :P Although I have the 5spd.

Fully loaded with 23' TT in tow, 110Gal water, 30 gal gasoline, generators, tools, gear, etc. Combined weight of about 14-15k lbs. I get 13-14MPG.

--Chris


cool.
What's (trying not to giggle) your rear end ratio??
Mines 4:10 to 1.
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Postby slvrnmph » Fri Aug 20, 2010 12:24 pm

missariel wrote:Hi everyone!
I've been lurking on this board, specifically this post, for a while now, and I finally decided to come out and play.
This will be my fourth year on the playa, but my first year with a trailer. So far, it seems like this advice is geared towards people who own trailers, I'm wondering if you all could give some tips to those of us unfortunate enough to rent uhaul trailers.

I have a 96 GMC Jimmy, in very good condition for its age. It has done a good deal of towing, unfortunately never with me though. We will be renting a 5x8 trailer. I have read through this whole thread, and so far I have learned to slow the fuck down. done. It also seems like tire pressure/bearings/brakes should be checked, my car needs to be heavier than the trailer etc. What I'm really interested in are things to ask uhaul to check before I leave the lot. Things that a novice like me may overlook. I will be checking the trailer often, driving painfully slow the whole way, etc. paranoia seems to pay off at times!

Anyway, tips specifically for rented trailers would be really appreciated.
thank you all!


I would suggest making sure you have a good quality hitch pin for the draw bar. I can't remember what the hitch pin I had was like, but the 2nd time I ever towed I had my hitch pin fail on me, thankfully as I was returning the empty trailer and the draw bar and attached trailer came apart from my vehicle. I doubt this happens very often and is probably easily avoided with a quality hitch pin. I must have had a really cheap one. You should also have their assistance in verifying all the trailer lights are working. Also, consider getting extended side view mirrors.
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Postby crstophr » Fri Aug 20, 2010 1:11 pm

[quote="ygmir"][quote="crstophr"][quote]Mine is a 93 Dodge, W350 dually, diesel engine[/quote]

Mine's a 93, W350 dually, extended cab, 5.9l CT Diesel as well :P Although I have the 5spd.

Fully loaded with 23' TT in tow, 110Gal water, 30 gal gasoline, generators, tools, gear, etc. Combined weight of about 14-15k lbs. I get 13-14MPG.

--Chris[/quote]

cool.
What's (trying not to giggle) your rear end ratio??
Mines 4:10 to 1.[/quote]

Yup, 4:10 ratio as well. With some upgraded injectors and a couple of injection pump mods it pulls like mad up long grades. I typically have to back off due to exhaust or water temps before I run out of go pedal.

This truck has an amazing ability to handle heavy loads and towing in general while maintaining excellent fuel economy.

Some day, just for kicks, I would love to drive one of the big rigs. After a couple of years towing all over the west coast with this truck I'm really curious what it's like.
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Postby sambojones » Sat Aug 21, 2010 1:09 am

I'd love to consult yalls road knowledge in terms of safety and fuel efficiency for the routes that are available to me. i'll be driving out of dallas so either i can just start going west and go through NM, AZ and cut north through NV or i can start going west and go slightly north west through colorado and keep going west through utah and nv till reno. i think probably the NM, AZ, NV route would be more flat but its just such a damn boring drive and i've never been to colorado. it would be nice to see some new states but i dunno how bad the mountains will kill my efficiency or if there are any safety issues. my trailer is prolly around 1500 pounds with my stuff in it but it sits low mostly just my yurt and some other camping gear.
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Postby Bluemandrew » Sat Aug 21, 2010 5:26 am

Ygmir, Elliot

You'll be happy to hear I bought a truck. 1986 military cargo van.


But then it died on the way home from buying it, so what I really did was buy another project to get done between now and go time...
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Postby ygmir » Sat Aug 21, 2010 6:45 am

well Sambo........I'd bet your right, about the southern route being more flat, and, hot, and boring. but, maybe faster?
Does your trailer have brakes?
What are you towing it with?
If your trailer/load is over 1K lbs or so, and unless you're towing with a pretty big truck, I'd suggest brakes on said trailer.
If you don't have brakes, the flatter the better.
Some of those downgrades through Utah and Colorado are long.....and steep.
Don't forget, with towing, it's not so much about speed and getting there.......it's about stopping.
If on a long downhill, you feel your brakes fading, and getting hot (smell, sometimes), pull over or slow down, and let 'em cool, go to lower gears and not use them so much.........

once they get to hot, and won't work, it's a bummer to be still going to fast downhill.

Just some thoughts, not trying to imply you don't know, but, others read this, too.

BMD:

yay, for getting a bigger rig!!!
I hope you can get er going soon.
I really think, even though it'll cost more in fuel, the safety you just bought will pay off..
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Postby Elliot » Sat Aug 21, 2010 7:33 am

:D
A "military cargo van".... Well, that certainly narrows it down to... anything from a heavy duty golf cart to a self-propelled warehouse building. ;-)

Whatever it is, it is certain to be more suited to the task than the Neon. Have a pro look it over real good. And make sure you stop and get some sleep along the way.
:D
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Postby ygmir » Sat Aug 21, 2010 7:35 am

Elliot wrote::D
A "military cargo van".... Well, that certainly narrows it down to... anything from a heavy duty golf cart to a self-propelled warehouse building. ;-)

Whatever it is, it is certain to be more suited to the task than the Neon. Have a pro look it over real good. And make sure you stop and get some sleep along the way.
:D


I have a military cargo truck........is it like this?

Image
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Postby sambojones » Sat Aug 21, 2010 7:45 am

ygmir wrote:well Sambo........I'd bet your right, about the southern route being more flat, and, hot, and boring. but, maybe faster?
Does your trailer have brakes?
What are you towing it with?
If your trailer/load is over 1K lbs or so, and unless you're towing with a pretty big truck, I'd suggest brakes on said trailer.
If you don't have brakes, the flatter the better.
Some of those downgrades through Utah and Colorado are long.....and steep.
Don't forget, with towing, it's not so much about speed and getting there.......it's about stopping.
If on a long downhill, you feel your brakes fading, and getting hot (smell, sometimes), pull over or slow down, and let 'em cool, go to lower gears and not use them so much.........

once they get to hot, and won't work, it's a bummer to be still going to fast downhill.

Just some thoughts, not trying to imply you don't know, but, others read this, too.


Thanks for the thoughts Ygmir that's pretty much what I suspected I guess it's the southern route for me.

my tow rig is a lexus ls430 and the trailer is a 4' x 10' heavy duty double axle open utility trailer the kind that doesn't have solid walls just tubing that's about 1 foot tall. the trailer does have brakes however my car currently doesn't have a hookup for them, but if u think that the weight i'll have warrants them i'll see about getting them connected to the car. i'm gonna have the bearings repacked and new tires put on it before i leave i was hoping to save a bit of cash and not have the brakes hooked up, but i guess it might be unavoidable. any idea how much it costs to get the brakes hooked to the car?
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lol

Postby Bluemandrew » Sat Aug 21, 2010 8:06 am

Image

It's a Chevy G30 van, with a high cube body.

Image

Image


It's got a 6.2 diesel, which I'm told is great once I get it running right...Should get decent mileage even if it is a bit slow.

It overheated and then ran out of gas :shock: right after I picked it up. I had test driven it for a half an hour prior, I beat the snot out of it, but when I finally got rolling home all hell broke loose.

The chilton's manual and my tools will now be accompanying us.


I do have to say I rather like doing the coast-to-coast drive straight btw. I've done that once, and some multi-day journey's around the east before.
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Postby ygmir » Sat Aug 21, 2010 8:20 am

sambojones wrote:
ygmir wrote:well Sambo........I'd bet your right, about the southern route being more flat, and, hot, and boring. but, maybe faster?
Does your trailer have brakes?
What are you towing it with?
If your trailer/load is over 1K lbs or so, and unless you're towing with a pretty big truck, I'd suggest brakes on said trailer.
If you don't have brakes, the flatter the better.
Some of those downgrades through Utah and Colorado are long.....and steep.
Don't forget, with towing, it's not so much about speed and getting there.......it's about stopping.
If on a long downhill, you feel your brakes fading, and getting hot (smell, sometimes), pull over or slow down, and let 'em cool, go to lower gears and not use them so much.........

once they get to hot, and won't work, it's a bummer to be still going to fast downhill.

Just some thoughts, not trying to imply you don't know, but, others read this, too.


Thanks for the thoughts Ygmir that's pretty much what I suspected I guess it's the southern route for me.

my tow rig is a lexus ls430 and the trailer is a 4' x 10' heavy duty double axle open utility trailer the kind that doesn't have solid walls just tubing that's about 1 foot tall. the trailer does have brakes however my car currently doesn't have a hookup for them, but if u think that the weight i'll have warrants them i'll see about getting them connected to the car. i'm gonna have the bearings repacked and new tires put on it before i leave i was hoping to save a bit of cash and not have the brakes hooked up, but i guess it might be unavoidable. any idea how much it costs to get the brakes hooked to the car?


yeah, Sambo, I really would suggest getting the brake controller......that stopping thing is pretty important. And even though your car is a nice fairly good size rig, having half it's weight, pushing you, and the car probably loaded to capacity, too........makes for tough emergency stopping. The slow, anticipated stops always work, but, when the guy in front of you slams his brakes on.....you gotta be able to deal with it.

I'm assuming the brakes on the trailer are electric?

Does your car have an integral trailer plug in the back, or, one there at all?

If it has a factory set up, it'd be pre-wired, and, a controller will just plug into your harness.

If not, you'll need to run one wire back for the brakes.
There are usually only 4 wires on the controller:
one for power, ground, brake light, and brake power. The last is the only one that needs to go to the back and into the plug.

The controllers vary greatly in price.
I'd check online to get a feel for cost.
Most RV places have people that can install fast and well.

good luck
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Postby ygmir » Sat Aug 21, 2010 8:25 am

cool van BMD:

running out of fuel in a diesel, is not good...........not sure on that particular one, but, sometimes you have to bleed the injectors to get them to start again. If you avoid that yay.

The overheating would concern me.
Do you know why it overheated?
Diesels, like to run hot, but overheat is expensive on them.

It should be a great rig, though, once squared away.

is it 24Volt?
remember that, if you need or offer a jump start.
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Postby sambojones » Sat Aug 21, 2010 8:47 am

thx for the advice Ygmir... i'll look into getting the brake controller hopefully i can find a place that'll install for a moderate price... as for my car it didn't come with any kind of factory installed trailer towing stuff i was gonna get the wiring harness for the lights installed tuesday but i guess i'll see if they can add the brakes as well... damn still got lots to do and not enuf time
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Postby sambojones » Sat Aug 21, 2010 8:50 am

also what do yall think of having u-haul do my wiring for lights/brakes good idea? or will they overcharge or fuck up my shit?
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Postby ygmir » Sat Aug 21, 2010 8:54 am

I'm sure, it depends on the U-haul place.
as with all, some are good, some not.
On the plus side, they'll probably do a good job, considering the liability they'd be open to if it fails.
and, they'd know if you have factory wiring and such for the stuff.
An RV place would also know.
Maybe a few phone calls are in order?
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Postby sambojones » Sat Aug 21, 2010 9:00 am

yup calling places as i type this 8) tho they all seem to be closed on the weekend guess i'll start hitting the phones monday morning
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Postby gyre » Sat Aug 21, 2010 10:50 am

I would go anywhere but uhaul.
Look for someone experienced.
Probably cheaper too.

Last I checked there were some controllers that used inertia for controlling trailer brakes, so took simple mounting in the tow vehicle.
They had full adjustments to fine tune.
Don't know how well that works but even a manual brake control is an upgrade over nothing.
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