Truck + camper + towing = Questions
General Topic
Contributors to this thread:
Tilzbow 09-Jul-24
Norseman 10-Jul-24
70lbDraw 10-Jul-24
WV Mountaineer 10-Jul-24
KSflatlander 10-Jul-24
70lbDraw 10-Jul-24
NM highcountry 10-Jul-24
Tilzbow 10-Jul-24
Kurt 10-Jul-24
Tilzbow 10-Jul-24
bb 10-Jul-24
bigswivle 12-Jul-24
WV Mountaineer 12-Jul-24
Norseman 12-Jul-24
From: Tilzbow
09-Jul-24
Another truck thread.

I’m considering getting a 1 ton pickup; crew cab, short bed, 4 wheels (not a dually), not hard set on make of truck but it’ll be a diesel. I’ll be adding a cab-over camper and using this rig as a hunting base camp (when possible), and flat towing my 5,000# Bronco to hunt out of.

Will also be towing my boat on multiple week fishing trips. Drop the camper and be able to launch the boat daily without breaking camp.

The campers I’m looking at are +/- 2,500# loaded. My boat and trailer weighs 6,500# with a 780# tongue weight.

Questions:

Air bag suspension upgrade or no? Airbag recommendations?

How to extend the hitch beyond the camper to tow the boat?

Other considerations?

Thanks

From: Norseman
10-Jul-24
350/3500 with air bag. 8k 800lb Torklift super truss weight distribution hitch extension.

Have a professional look it over and approve set up.

From: 70lbDraw
10-Jul-24
I have a 23 Ram 3500 with a leveling kit and rear air bags installed by 4 Wheel Parts Inc. I tow a 40 ft 5th wheel with no issues, and am considering pulling my UTV behind the trailer.

10-Jul-24
With the camper insert, I’d definitely get airbags.

FWIW, you are making the right decision. Guys will tell you how much they pull with their gas trucks. That you don’t need a diesel. Only on the Internet I guess. Because if you want to handily haul that insert or tow easily, you need a diesel.

Gas Trucks have come a long way. In power and all around performance. Diesel trucks have come a heck of a lot farther. All of them have Power that can’t be understood until you drive them. With reliability as good or better then an equal gas truck.

From: KSflatlander
10-Jul-24
Not the same but I have airbags from Air Lift that go inside the existing springs for towing the boat and camper. Takes all the squatting out of the rear end and stiffens the spring bounce. It has a wireless remote and onboard air pump mounted to the frame (no drill mount). I think it was $400 for the system and I installed myself. I didn't want to do any cutting on the spring mounts for airbag replacements. System is 5 years old and works great.

From: 70lbDraw
10-Jul-24
The airbags do make a YUGE difference! As KS alluded to, the wireless remote is a must have. I can adjust my hitch height at 70 mph.

10-Jul-24
Ford F350 Fx4 Powerstroke Lariat or Platinum is hard to beat. You won’t even know you have a camper in the bed or that you’re towing anything. I’ve never hauled anything where I thought I needed air bags. I haul a livestock trailer at times with 10- 15 800 lb steers..no problem, smooth as silk.

From: Tilzbow
10-Jul-24
Thanks for the input thus far!

Will definitely get a diesel pickup for this. Seems like airbags are the way to go.

I’ve owned and driven diesel pickups for 20 years while the 20+ years before that were gas pickups including a big V8 and a V10. I towed trailers up to 15,000# and the diesel is definitely where it’s at. I currently own a 2016 3/4 ton GMC that I use to tow boat but did use it to tow heavy travel trailers before we got the motorhome. Motorhome is a diesel, too. Rig weighs 38,000# loaded plus my 5,000# Bronco being flat towed and the diesel does the work. Problem with the motorhome is it’s a pavement only rig, tow rating is not high enough for the boat, wouldn’t want to break camp daily to launch the boat nor would I want to launch the boat with a 38,000# rear engine rig.

From: Kurt
10-Jul-24
Ordered my '15 Ford F350 Powerstroke with the heaviest load rating I could buy with single rear wheels, crew cab, short bed. I carry a Northern Light 8'-11" cab-over camper that weighs about 2600# with 40 gallons of water, twin batteries, fridge loaded etc. Truck is rated to carry about 3,400#s.

After using the truck for a few years with the camper on it 90% of the time I had to add air bags to level up the truck. They work very well at about 35psi to raise the back of loaded truck and improve the handling.

I have towed a single axle cargo trailer with a Polaris RZR aboard with the truck/camper from BC to AZ on occasion. Truck has plenty of power and handles the load just fine. But if you doubled the weight of my trailer with your boat, we'd be over the payload rating of the single rear wheel truck (not towing capacity). I'd bet the truck would handle it, but if you got in a wreck the insurance company might have an issue?

Good luck with it, I love my truck and Northern Lite combination. Same combo I had at the Sheep Show sporting clays shoot in '23.

From: Tilzbow
10-Jul-24
I remember that truck at a clays shoot during the Sheep Show! Good advice watching the total payload capacity, I’ll have to pay attention to that.

From: bb
10-Jul-24
One thing to consider, this is what sold me on the Fords with the aluminum body. You'll increase your payload by roughly 300lbs for a given GVW over a steel body truck.

From: bigswivle
12-Jul-24

bigswivle's embedded Photo
bigswivle's embedded Photo
Just bought this yesterday. 1 ton long bed, air bags will be here next week and then I’m hauling a 36’ horse trailer to Georgia for a rodeo. I’ll let u know how it does.

12-Jul-24
I’d prepare to be shocked by the power. The power stroke diesels have all been strong. But, the 6.6 powerstroke Ford diesel is something words can’t express accurately. The truck will break traction at 25-30 mph if you get into it hard. On dry asphalt roads.

From: Norseman
12-Jul-24

Norseman 's embedded Photo
Norseman 's embedded Photo

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