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Post Info TOPIC: Questions about Your capacities


RV-Dreams Community Member

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Questions about Your capacities


Hello Howard.  We have been following you and Linda for some time now and plan to fulltime within a few years.  We currently have a 2006 F350 dually and a 2015 Montana High Country.  We have every intention on starting out with a more fulltime friendly rig.  We have looked at Augusta RV and Mobile Suites.  I know our current truck will not be in the mix, so we have been looking at what years of trucks to look for to combine legally with a 20K lb fifth wheel.  Looks like a 2015 and up F350 or 2012 and up F450.  I am leaning towards the F450 but we have time to make the right decisions.  My questions are, how did you go about getting the GVW increased on your Cambridge, or did you?  Is there a way to show that axles were increased, tires, suspension, etc. and be legal?  That would open up the door for used units for us, if that is possible.  And on your F450, did it come from the factory able to tow your rig and its own weight GCWR or did you do something else?  I have found trucks that will tow a 20k lb fifth wheel, but only leave 10k for the truck.  Last year on the way to the beach, our truck was 12500.  So I am wanting to find a combination that will allow the truck to be at max capacity and the fifth wheel to be at max capacity and still be legal.



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"My questions are, how did you go about getting the GVW increased on your Cambridge, or did you?  Is there a way to show that axles were increased, tires, suspension, etc. and be legal? That would open up the door for used units for us, if that is possible.


The only way to have the federal compliance label weight ratings changed is to have it done by the manufacturer, and most aren't willing to do that unless they have made the changes themselves.  So, no we did not officially get our GVWR changed.  However, if we are stopped, weighed, and challenged for any reason, we have all the paperwork showing that we upgraded tires, wheels, suspension, and brakes and the increased capacities of all those changes.  Will that hold up in a court of law if we are in an accident?  Hopefully.

And on your F450, did it come from the factory able to tow your rig and its own weight GCWR or did you do something else?"

Yes, our F450 came from the factory with enough GCWR for both itself and our fifth wheel plus some cushion.  However, keep in mind that our truck is a 2005 and was built on a commercial chassis with a 4.88 rear axle ratio.  They weren't built as a pick-up model and they had to have a bed put on after the factory at that time.  The F450s didn't come out as a retail, showroom pick-up until 2008.

I don't know if any of that helps, but those are my answers.  Sounds like you are on the right track and doing the proper assessments.  Best of luck in your decision-making.



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RV-Dreams Family Member

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I'll comment a bit more about some important differences in Howard's F-450 and 99.9% of the "F-450's" in use on this forum.  His is a commercial truck with significantly different capacities, including more than just "towing" capacities, then the "pickup" version of the F-450 you are most likely considering.  That's not to say the "pickup" F-450 might not do the job in all capacity areas, including rear axle rating, etc., for your specific application. it is simply to comment what Howard has is a different truck then the pickups and one should be aware not all F-450's are the same. There are many differences in many rating and capacity numbers.  It is best to look at the full specifications and not just the marketing materials that say "This truck can pull this much."  This is true for all brands of trucks between the commercial and the non-commercial versions.  It's also good to note that the F-350 actually has some ratings that are higher than the F-450.  Important to read the "fine print."  Lots to research in detail.

There is a lot of material on the forum concerning these important issues of ratings and capacities.

Bill



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Bill & Linda
2014 New Horizons Majestic F37RLTSS 96

2016 RAM 5500HD \ 4-Wheel Drive \ Link Air Ride
Classy Chassis RV Hauler Bed Conversion \ Aux Fuel Tank 



RV-Dreams Community Member

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I thought that I was looking at the correct capacities from Ford. I found a 2005 F550 Cab and Chassis, but when I looked up the capacities, it was quite lower than I expected. Now it would have done the job I was looking for, but I was surprised how much lower the towing and payload capacities were than some of the newer trucks. For instance, the 2005 F550 Cab and Chassis is the only one that offers 33k GCWR. Subtracting 20k for the fiver, only leaves 13k for the truck and that is with 4.88 gears. What I would like to have is a Cab and Chassis and purchase a hauler bed like Howard and Linda, so that is what I have been looking at anyways. But I have had trouble finding a difference in "commercial" trucks and regular trucks. I would prefer to not buy new because of the cost with the hauler bed, $80k+. I don't mind an older truck without all the bells and whistles, it just needs to have all the capacities that I may ever need to stay legal.

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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DreamingtheDream wrote:

I thought that I was looking at the correct capacities from Ford. I found a 2005 F550 Cab and Chassis, but when I looked up the capacities, it was quite lower than I expected. Now it would have done the job I was looking for, but I was surprised how much lower the towing and payload capacities were than some of the newer trucks. For instance, the 2005 F550 Cab and Chassis is the only one that offers 33k GCWR. Subtracting 20k for the fiver, only leaves 13k for the truck and that is with 4.88 gears. What I would like to have is a Cab and Chassis and purchase a hauler bed like Howard and Linda, so that is what I have been looking at anyways. But I have had trouble finding a difference in "commercial" trucks and regular trucks. I would prefer to not buy new because of the cost with the hauler bed, $80k+. I don't mind an older truck without all the bells and whistles, it just needs to have all the capacities that I may ever need to stay legal.


The F-450 is the only Ford truck where the F-450 "badge" is significantly different between the commercial cab and chassis and the "pickup."  But as you will notice once going to the Ford website the commercial trucks, which are listed as a separate category from the the "Super Duty" pickups, have de-rated engines, i.e. less horse power and torque then the pickup offerings.  In the case of the F-550 much less HP and torque.  This is one of the reasons for the much lower tow ratings.  For example, Howard has commented several times in his posts that the truck "struggled," to use his word, to climb a mountain with the trailer. 

While not rocket science this is a bit more complicated then most imagine if one really wants to stay within all ratings.  You mentioned a hauler bed which is a very good idea to protect the trucks bed rails from going into the trailer.  As an example, putting a hauler bed on many versions of the F-450 will, when one includes the weight of the trailer pin and tools and possibly a loaded auxiliary fuel tank, exceed the 9,100 lb rear axle rating of that pickup version of the F-450 (model rear 2016 and prior.)  Howard's commercial F-450 truck is fine due the higher ratings of the commercial truck he has.  But the catch is just because it is a commercial truck does not mean it will have higher ratings in all necessary areas.  "It depends."   

I mention, "It depends" often having "run the numbers" for a lot of trucks over the years and it is sometimes surprising what works and what doesn't.  The sales materials are very misleading.  

If you want to be totally "sure" you must get the spec charts, set up a spread sheet and "do the math" as you are obviously trying to do this correctly.  But please keep in mind the specs for a 2005 truck, of any manufacture, and a 2016 are going to be quite different in many cases and getting the numbers for the older trucks can be more challenging - especially for Ford as they tend to make more changes over the years than others.  Not a knock, just a fact which you are looking for: facts that is.

A final comment, your 20K for the trailer and 13K for the truck are not too far off.  But remember not to count the pin weight of the trailer "twice" in the GCWR.  Further, a 20K trailer may seem pretty heavy, but never, IMO, purchase the truck before the trailer.  The only totally safe way is an HDT and that opens up a whole bunch of other, more complicate to some, issues, 

Trust this helps a bit.

 



__________________

Bill & Linda
2014 New Horizons Majestic F37RLTSS 96

2016 RAM 5500HD \ 4-Wheel Drive \ Link Air Ride
Classy Chassis RV Hauler Bed Conversion \ Aux Fuel Tank 

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