Tongue weight concerns

Trooper1629

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Hello all. Just bought a new Laramie crew with the short bed. It has the tow package and 3.92 axle. From my math it can tow 11,340lbs. I’m looking a buying a camper that has a dry weight of 7,800lbs and a tongue weight of 1,100lbs. I also plan on putting air bags in the back as well as using a huskey center line TS WDH. The campers max gvw is 10,400lbs I which is about 90% of my max. But I also don’t see my self putting 2,600lbs of gear in my camper. I don’t think the truck will have any issue pulling the weight. I’m more concerned with the tongue weight. I’m sure it will go up being I will be adding the weight of gear in the camper. I believe the max tongue weight of the truck is 1275lbs. Looking for anyone’s thoughts. The camper is also advertised as half ton towable
 

YoAdrian

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I went through this not too long ago, and ultimately recognized that there was an important trade off to be made between a LD/HD truck, the option list and trim level, the # of family members I would be bringing in the cab, and the size of the trailer.

I gave up options to gain a bigger payload. This allowed me to keep my medium sized trailer and pack the family while sticking with the LD Ram 1500.

I am concerned with the towing case you describe, but without your exact allowable payload it’s hard to answer, as it is different for every truck depending on options... post your door sticker with the payload number on there to help this discussion along. In fact there’s a whole thread on comparisons between payload stickers!

If your payload is where most Laramies are (guessing 1350-1400ish?), you will be maxed out between yourself, that nice WD hitch, and the 1100# tongue... if you really mean dry tongue weight then it’ll be even higher. And with ANY passengers, you will exceed your payload.

Pending your exact payload numbers, indications are that you should be considering a change of some sort to your plan so you don’t exceed your payload and thus GVWR and/or GAWR. So assuming you are keeping the truck you just bought, is it going to be a smaller trailer, fewer family members, or a thinner waistline? ;-) Just kidding about the waistline, but not the rest!
 

Howitis

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Are you experienced in towing a trailer of this size? The weight of this trailer and any wind at all is going to be scary. I think your trailer is way to big for a half ton.
 

Trooper1629

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Are you experienced in towing a trailer of this size? The weight of this trailer and any wind at all is going to be scary. I think your trailer is way to big for a half ton.
I am an experienced. I used to work at a towing and recovery shop and have towed tractor trailers.
The camper is definitely at the top end of the spectrum. The weird thing is the company advertises it as a camper that can be towed by a half ton. I just don’t want to have an issue where the truck has mechanical failure due to the weight
 

JoeRam

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The Company's both selling and building these campers tend to play down if you will, the requirements of the tow vehicle, they sell more units that way. once it's sold the issue is yours to own, not on them. I have to agree with YoAdrian, unless you have a minimal options on the Laramie, that trailer is maxing out your tow abilities if not exceeding once you ad passengers and anything in the bed of the truck. That is of course if your fully loading the trailer to its max capacity. The door sticker will certainly help us understand more of your configuration/set-up.
 

YoAdrian

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I am an experienced. I used to work at a towing and recovery shop and have towed tractor trailers.
The camper is definitely at the top end of the spectrum. The weird thing is the company advertises it as a camper that can be towed by a half ton. I just don’t want to have an issue where the truck has mechanical failure due to the weight
I am almost up there trailer weight-wise and the gross weight is managable... but the tongue weight eats up a LOT of the payload of a half-ton truck, which is why I had to abort my first Ram order (after waiting for the mythical Ramboxes no less, good times :D)... when my beautiful, decked out Blue Steel Laramie arrived I saw the payload sticker read... 1240. [insert that Darth Vader “NOOOOOO” video]

My Airstream has a max weight of 7600, but with solar in the front tongue weight is about 1000 vs the standard 10% 760. Stable load, but heavy tongue. As you can see from my sig block I searched for and finally found a lightly optioned BigHorn elsewhere with almost 1600 payload, that still had my key options. Now I could tow my existing trailer and bring a couple family members! Still gotta watch it though.

If I were you, and you want to stick with your current truck for now, I would compromise by lightening up on the trailer and tongue weight. Give yourself some wiggle room on those numbes. The salesman won’t want you to do this of course...

Will a pound over cause you to explode? No. Towing is one of those things (like flying, or motorcycle riding) where you can cut corners here and there for a very long time and come out ok... until you don’t (due to “the perfect storm” of problems eg bad weather+bad road+imperfect load+worn tire+fatigue... etc). For this reason, aside from staying legal, it is all on us to decide how safe we will be every moment we do these things. It all starts by asking the right questions on setup like you’re doing. (y) Ok, off the soap box!
 

devildodge

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Let's look at 2 numbers GVWR and GCWR.

LETS SAY, you load the truck to its max...7100 GVWR(ASSUMING, your truck is 4wd, please fill out signature)

So, with a GCWR of 17000, that leaves 9900 lbs for a trailer.

It looks like the trailer you have listed is tongue heavy. Interested to know where you got the 1275lb max tongue weight number from?

The trailer is heavy for a half ton...but people are very successfully towing these, so far.

A half ton towable camper uses the max tow of a specific configuration truck and the minimum weight of the trailer.

A Laramie is no where near the max tow truck, and do no be planning on hauling water or not emptying your tanks.

Good luck with your setup...it is possible to tow heavy with these 5th Gens, but I can not make myself feel comfortable with it.
 

devildodge

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@YoAdrian, is giving excellent advice...and he has been there and made the hard decisions.

Camping season is ramping up...just like when production ramped up, we had alot of excited people...alot of happy customers...then some issues came.

I sure hope we don't hear too many issues...but the fun has just started for some, and i still got 4 more days til our first trip.

Anxious for everyone's camping and towing experiences.
 

YoAdrian

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Shouldn’t cram the cab or bed with people/stuff, but that payload of 1651 gives you options. I found my sticker was dead on accurate when I weighed at the scale. Just subtract you and your passengers’ weight along with the weight of the hitch and tongue from 1651, and make sure you have something left over...

Truck will have plenty of power and cooling.

That’s all understanding you said you’ll have a good WD hitch and sway control. Set it up right and I think you are on the right track my man. I just never would have guessed a sweet optioned Laramie would have a higher payload than my medium optioned BigHorn. Sad face. Happy for you though!
 

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