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Bought our first trailer! Couple questions.

Discussion in 'Towing & Hauling' started by GhostOfGaspar, Jan 19, 2020.

  1. Jan 19, 2020 at 3:06 PM
    #1
    GhostOfGaspar

    GhostOfGaspar [OP] New Member

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    Howdy y'all! My beautiful wife and I have just completed our 5-year plan of purchasing a travel trailer. We paid off 2 cars, put 65% down (keeping monthly payments low) on a 2017 5.7 v8 TRD CM Off Road and tow package, and saved for a 50% down payment on our new camper; purchased on Friday, with final walk-through and delivery this coming Saturday. We are beyond excited. Just want to run a few things by the forum, though I feel I've done a ton of research and number crunching.
    Truck's numbers-
    GVWR-7200
    Payload- 1270
    GCWR- 15540
    Tow Capacity- 9200

    Travel Trailer (Coachmen Apex Nano 213RDS) numbers-
    UVW- 3826
    Total Exterior Length- 25'
    Dry Hitch Weight- 467
    GVWR- 6000

    I know I'm pretty well under all my numbers for the Tundra. My lovely wife, myself, and our two dogs combine for about 450lbs. I anticipate our load-out for the trailer to be in the 600-800# range, as we have no designs on needing to travel with full water for the foreseeable future. So even leaning towards the heavy side, and taking into account propane and battery, I can't see us getting above 1100# payload, putting maybe 650# tongue weight (again, I think we'll be pretty well under this).

    So I guess my questions are-
    Anyone else pull a similar set-up? How's she do? I've never towed anything before, but I'm a naturally conservative and defensive driver. Any general words of wisdom?

    What type of hitch should I be looking for? I'd like to go WDH with built in sway. I would like something of quality that will take care of me, but I don't think I need to over-do it and I'd like to not break the bank. It's a double axle TT with already about 12% on the tongue.

    Being a double axle TT, I've heard good thing about Xchocks. Any opinions?

    Other than the obvious things like hoses and leveling blocks, pressure gauge, and the associated accouterments, anything else I should be looking at?

    Thanks for any help to a newbie to towing and travel trailers (though pretty grizzled to camping).
     
  2. Jan 19, 2020 at 3:42 PM
    #2
    SprinterAE86

    SprinterAE86 New Member

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    Charlottetown, PE, Canada
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    2012 Toyota Sequoia Platinum
    Bilstein 5100 2.3/1.5, TRD sway bars ft/rr, Cooper Tires Discoverer AT3 XLT 295.70.18, Vision Manx 2 18x9 +12, APS side armor steps, TRD-Pro Grill and Bulge, de-chromed, blackout emblems, OEM mirror caps and flares, TRD shift knob, Leather wrapped steering wheel, All weather mats
  3. Jan 19, 2020 at 3:47 PM
    #3
    GhostOfGaspar

    GhostOfGaspar [OP] New Member

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    Pudge likes this.
  4. Jan 19, 2020 at 3:59 PM
    #4
    SprinterAE86

    SprinterAE86 New Member

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    Charlottetown, PE, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2012 Toyota Sequoia Platinum
    Bilstein 5100 2.3/1.5, TRD sway bars ft/rr, Cooper Tires Discoverer AT3 XLT 295.70.18, Vision Manx 2 18x9 +12, APS side armor steps, TRD-Pro Grill and Bulge, de-chromed, blackout emblems, OEM mirror caps and flares, TRD shift knob, Leather wrapped steering wheel, All weather mats
    Never pulled a 25ft trailer or a trailer at all? You may need to rent a u-haul trailer to practice on.

    You definitely need a weight distribution hitch and the dealer should be able to steer you in the right direction.

    Xchalks are good.

    For your Tundra: Helwig or TRD rear sway bar, Firestone Air Springs, wireless camera mounted on the back of the trailer connected to a monitor in your truck. E rated tires.
     
    GhostOfGaspar [OP] likes this.
  5. Jan 19, 2020 at 4:14 PM
    #5
    Jtundra81

    Jtundra81 Just a member

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    I tow a 5000 lb travel trailer , I use a husky 30849 sway bar and weight distribution .
    Had no issue with sway and it levels the truck perfectly.
    I use S4 with tow haul and drive between 55 and 60 mph and keep an eye on trans and engine temps.
    Truck Has plenty of power and you should be more then good with 6000 lb .
    I also had a trd sway bar installed for peace of mind
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2020
  6. Jan 19, 2020 at 4:18 PM
    #6
    JohnLakeman

    JohnLakeman Burning Internet Daylight

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    Once you've hitched up the trailer, see how your mirrors are working for you. Tundra is a wide tow vehicle, but you will need to evaluate the usefulness your existing mirrors. Extended tow mirrors may be helpful. You have to be able to see down both sides of the trailer, and where you are in the lane. My Gen1 4Runner was a narrow tow vehicle...had to use tow mirrors mounted up on the front fenders to see what was happening behind me.

    Congrats...Some good decisions. You're going to love it. ;)
     
    jtwags and GhostOfGaspar [OP] like this.
  7. Jan 19, 2020 at 4:29 PM
    #7
    GhostOfGaspar

    GhostOfGaspar [OP] New Member

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    Cool! I for sure am going to go with WDH. The dealer has scales and, as you said, should be able to steer me in the right direction, though I think that (and correct me if i'm wrong), Husky or E2 seem like good options for what I need it to do. I have a TRD rear sway bar already installed, and Bilstein 5100 shocks, though to be completely honest, I'm not sure how that will affect my towing. The truck had them when I purchased her.

    Awesome, thanks. I really don't think that we would hit the 6k mark, but I always want to think about the maximum potential. realistically I think we'll settle in at about 4700-5000# fully loaded.
    I absolutely plan on taking our time on the road. Even though I'm only 36 I've been driving like a grandpa since about 1999. It's weird how you value your things differently once you have to buy them yourself. Or when you have family to worry about as well.
     
    AzureNightmare likes this.
  8. Jan 19, 2020 at 4:33 PM
    #8
    GhostOfGaspar

    GhostOfGaspar [OP] New Member

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    Thanks, bud! I have after-market Tow Mirrors on my truck, they were there when I bought her. They are extendable from the already longer length and have the "blind spot mirror". Also, the trailer we purchased is only 7'6" wide, as opposed to the more-or-less standard 8", so I feel like my vision should be good. Like @SprinterAE86 suggested, I might look into back-up cameras as well.
     
    JohnLakeman likes this.
  9. Jan 19, 2020 at 4:36 PM
    #9
    Jtundra81

    Jtundra81 Just a member

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    Cool , I am 38 myself with wify , 2 kids and a dog , I always take my time towing or not , I see people with less trucks towing heavier load that passes me all time driving in the Upper 70 , it is really not worth the risk , 15 or 20 min won't make a difference
     
  10. Jan 19, 2020 at 5:22 PM
    #10
    SprinterAE86

    SprinterAE86 New Member

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    Charlottetown, PE, Canada
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    2012 Toyota Sequoia Platinum
    Bilstein 5100 2.3/1.5, TRD sway bars ft/rr, Cooper Tires Discoverer AT3 XLT 295.70.18, Vision Manx 2 18x9 +12, APS side armor steps, TRD-Pro Grill and Bulge, de-chromed, blackout emblems, OEM mirror caps and flares, TRD shift knob, Leather wrapped steering wheel, All weather mats
    Rear sway bar will definitely help. You are adding payload to your truck. Every time you drive in a windy road, apply brakes with steering angle, you you are increasing that payload. Your roll center increases, stability of the tow rig will be affected.
     
    GhostOfGaspar [OP] likes this.
  11. Jan 23, 2020 at 12:43 PM
    #11
    Maadcaap

    Maadcaap White Tundys

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    275/70/18 KO2
     
    GhostOfGaspar [OP] likes this.
  12. Feb 6, 2020 at 12:11 PM
    #12
    bluelakeguy

    bluelakeguy New Member

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    To OP - I have nearly same setup. 2018 Tundra, 5.7, TRD. Apex Nano 213RDS. Use Equalizer WDH. Pulls like a dream. Definitely get a good WDH. I swear by my Equilizer.
     
  13. Feb 6, 2020 at 12:28 PM
    #13
    GhostOfGaspar

    GhostOfGaspar [OP] New Member

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    I ended up with an e2 WDH with sway control. Towed like a champ, especially since I had not towed anything ever before. Was actually surprised how easy it was, though I topped out at about 55mph on the way home.

    Backing that thing into my driveway, however. . .
    That's going to take some practice. But my lovely and direction-signaling wife has the patience of a saint. We take her out on our first trip two weeks from tomorrow.

    [​IMG]
     
    Bigboitundra and drobb like this.
  14. Feb 6, 2020 at 12:36 PM
    #14
    bluelakeguy

    bluelakeguy New Member

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    Backing comes with practice and care. Use a spotter and don't be shy about getting out and looking multiple times. We've actually just upgraded to bigger unit - 32' long, 7000#. Hoping I don't regret it!
     
  15. Feb 6, 2020 at 12:37 PM
    #15
    ARMYGREEN

    ARMYGREEN New Member

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    Give us an update on your first trip once it is done.
     
    GhostOfGaspar [OP] likes this.
  16. Feb 6, 2020 at 12:46 PM
    #16
    GhostOfGaspar

    GhostOfGaspar [OP] New Member

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    Here's a pic of the rig, while we were practicing backing up.

    [​IMG]
     
    JC303, Burdturger, usaf.2012 and 5 others like this.
  17. Feb 8, 2020 at 3:27 AM
    #17
    plumber802

    plumber802 New Member

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    Nice looking rig. Respect to you for staying the GVWR/payload rating.
     
    GhostOfGaspar [OP] likes this.
  18. Feb 8, 2020 at 3:37 AM
    #18
    Jpneely

    Jpneely New Member

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    yep. this. ive been towing crap for years and i still do this. just the other day i got too comfortable and backed my boat into my garage door haha. dont get too comfortable or proud to ask for a spotter or get out a thousand times.
     
  19. Feb 8, 2020 at 5:49 AM
    #19
    Borador

    Borador New Member

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    Congrats on the truck and camper, and for being able to save 50+% on them before purchasing! That's the way it should be done!
     
    GhostOfGaspar [OP] likes this.
  20. Feb 8, 2020 at 6:12 AM
    #20
    shawn.roe24

    shawn.roe24 New Member

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    Awesome stuff! Congrats to you and the wife. One thing I will say with towing is leave ego out of it. Like a previous post said, if you need to get out and look then get out and look. Nothing wrong with being cautious.
    Usually when I tow something new I like to find an empty parking lot and practice driving around. Figure out how it pulls from a dead stop and practice backing up between painted lines.

    But hey, enjoy it and post a lot of pics of the adventures.
     
    GhostOfGaspar [OP] likes this.
  21. Feb 26, 2020 at 9:46 AM
    #21
    Mike19

    Mike19 New Member

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    Nice rig. I would like to suggest adding airbags to you rear suspension to remove the rear sag. they don't cost much and will make your ride even better.
     
    GhostOfGaspar [OP] likes this.
  22. Feb 27, 2020 at 10:37 AM
    #22
    GhostOfGaspar

    GhostOfGaspar [OP] New Member

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    Thanks y'all. Maiden Voyage was this past weekend and everything was smooth. No issues arose with the camper itself, and everything seems to be in working order. We towed about 155 miles each way, Tampa area to Gainesville area, pretty flat and kept it about 60-65. Had pretty good cross winds on the way up, big rigs flying by, but encountered no real sway of any sort.
    Took my time backing her into the spot, got out twice, moved a picnic table from a vacant site across from us so I could pull forward, parked and unhitched. The whole thing was about 15-20 minutes.

     
    usaf.2012, shawn474, Zum and 5 others like this.
  23. Apr 5, 2020 at 11:26 AM
    #23
    Rob's Inferno

    Rob's Inferno New Member

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    Easy backing starts with the set up.Miss the set up and it becomes a pain really fast.GOAL= Get Out And Look,as many times as you need if you have no spotter.Know how your truck and trailer react to each other.Steer less, it makes it easier.And Dont OVER think when backing.Have fun :)
     
    GhostOfGaspar [OP] likes this.
  24. Jul 24, 2021 at 1:47 PM
    #24
    dukeofURL

    dukeofURL New Member

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  25. Jul 25, 2021 at 8:19 PM
    #25
    snappy924

    snappy924 New Member

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    We upgraded our trailer about a year ago and I love the extra space. Kids bunks in the rear. Box size is 27, but with tongue I think we’re around 31ft. Backing up seems easier. Our previous trailer was 20ft,
     
    dukeofURL likes this.
  26. Jul 26, 2021 at 5:38 AM
    #26
    BrakeDust

    BrakeDust New Member

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    Thread was a year old...
     

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