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Unread 03-09-2014, 09:37 AM   #1
bordeauxman
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Tow Rig Recommendation??

I am considering buying an extended cab pick-up truck for towing my rig to off road activities.

WHAT IS THE RECOMENDED MINIMUM PICK-UP FOR TOWING A 4000+ POUND JEEP ON A TRAILER?

If buying a Ford, would it be an F150 or F250? It needs enough power to make up highway hills with tow.

Thank you in advance.

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Unread 03-09-2014, 10:12 AM   #2
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I'd weight the Jeep with full fluids and packed like you would for a trip, then add that to the weight of the trailer. Make sure that weight does not exceed 80% of the tow rating. Good W/D hitch and controller, I'd rather be the guy who spends a few hundred extra on overkill than the guy on the side of the road with a flipped rig.

And get a quad cab, you'll only regret an extended cab.

I'd personally go F-250 or Chevy/GMC 2500 if you'll be towing a lot. I'm towing with a Sierra 1500, but it's not a perfect tow rig.
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Unread 03-09-2014, 10:51 AM   #3
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All 1500, 2500, and 3500 pickups will tow a reasonable trailer with a Jeep on it. A 3/4 ton better than a 1500, a 3500 better than that. A diesel better than gas, etc. There is always a compromise to be made. If you tell us what else the truck will do (DD?) and your budget, you will get a good answer.
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Unread 03-09-2014, 11:09 AM   #4
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The pick-up would reside at a weekend home in the country (we live in NYC) so it would only be used for some weekend hauling & jeep hauling. Probably less than 2,000 miles per year. Thanks and it seems like I'm in the correct forum now!
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Unread 03-09-2014, 12:05 PM   #5
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I think you will get good answers here about a pickup from others. I assume that you need a quad cab so you can take your passengers to the trails. However, if not, I always want to throw out what I think is a better choice for getting to the trails:


I recommend an Isuzu NPR with a 16' landscape bed on it, but there are other choices. These rigs are far more road friendly than an F250 with a trailer behind it. They are a dream to drive. You won't even know you have a rig on the bed. And, if you set a budget of about $12,000 it will last you forever with virtually no maintenance at 2000 miles per year. I think I paid about $400 per year for license and insurance on my Volvo FE. The cost per mile of a diesel 3/4 ton PU as a DD will dwarf the cost of owning a reasonable daily driver and a dedicated tow rig like the Isuzu NPR. Get out the calculator and take a look at it.

This one is 14' and you need 16' but you can get the idea:

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Unread 03-09-2014, 06:16 PM   #6
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Since you're not using it as a dd I'd get a 3/4 ton diesel if you can afford it. If not, the big gas engines will do fine. With only driving anything 2k/year you're biggest problem will be keeping things from dry-rotting especially if you have to leave it outside.
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Unread 03-11-2014, 12:47 PM   #7
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ahh the ever famous which truck should I get decision, kinda like do I take the red or the blue pill? A big factor in this is budget, its your business but you are asking for input and that is a key factor for some of us to give an honest reply.


for the amount of use you stated the truck is going to 'get,' I might suggest going with a gas motor truck. no they don't tow like a diesel but, cost vs use vs need all play into it. A gas motor will burn more fuel getting there but cost less to maintain overall. deisels don't like to sit very long, they can be tempermental LOL. We pull with everything around here, an new f150 eco boost, a 01 ext cab short bed Silverado gas, dodge ram 1500 gas, 06 single rear wheel f350 deisel, 06 crew Silverado diesel, my 06 f350 diesel dually and even my 04 Yukon xl with 180K on it and the gas 5.3 in it. The 01 Silverado has even pulled around the 06 SRW f350 on a car hauler.


If your not getting an regular cab, then I would go right to a crew cab. skip the extended cab. its a matter of 10-12" inches and I believe that you will regret not having it if you go with a ext cab. I have not heard one person I know say, geez I wish I got an ext cab instead of the crew.... on the flip-everyone I know with an ext wished that had gotten the crew cab. the additional length of the crew cab will also help in the towing characteristics of the truck.


if your not towing much more than a jeep on a trailer and little things like that, I wouldn't see you 'needing' anything more than a 150/1500 series truck, 250/2500 series on the top end. What you 'want' though always plays a factor. I say get the most truck you can for the money you have to spend, yet, leave a few dollars out for an air bag set up in the rear. putting a set of air bags in the rear will make a significant improvement in towing capabilities, ride and stability.


make sure your truck is equipped with a quality electronic brake controller and whatever trailer you tow has 'fully functioning' electric brakes on every wheel.
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Unread 03-12-2014, 08:16 AM   #8
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Hello guys,

Thank you for the help. I've dialed into a used F250. I thought the Isuzu idea was unique, but there is a negotiation taking place with the family too and that means a QUAD CAB....

Giant Panda (any relation to Kung Fu Panda?); The trailer that I get will have working brakes for sure. I understand the imporantance of being able to stop. You did loose me on the "AIR BAG SETUP" (???). Can you elaborate on that? Pardon my ignorance.

Thank you.
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Unread 03-12-2014, 01:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bordeauxman View Post
Hello guys,

Thank you for the help. I've dialed into a used F250. I thought the Isuzu idea was unique, but there is a negotiation taking place with the family too and that means a QUAD CAB....

Thank you.
Thanks. I have had so many pick up trucks over the years I am all over the alternatives. But, i certainly get the family aspect of your quest.

There is also the diesel E350 van that can be had for half the price of a comparable pickup, and while not a great tow machine will do fine with a single Jeep and reasonable trailer.

But, I know you will probably end up with a pickup as I did many times. Best of Luck!
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Unread 03-12-2014, 07:21 PM   #10
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absolutely... air bags, air springs, 'helpers' springs' .... people call them different things. I just call them air bags. they are a 'load carrying air bag' system that is installed between your axle and your frame. there are a few different versions, but I like to run the 'no drill' myself. they work great and provide additional ride stability with increased cargo capacity. You can level your truck correctly and still retain a nice ride with a trailer in tow. on the far end, I occasionally pull a 36' imperial double car hauler, triple axle with 2 built jeeps and a fully loaded truck bed full of 'stuff.' the air bags keep the load level and the ride stable. I adjust PSI according to the load of course.


As I have them on my tow rig, we also installed a set on my buddies 06 Silverado short bed 2500.

http://www.amazon.com/Firestone-W217.../dp/B001FEOSGC

^^^This is the kit I use on my truck and recommend for the 250, verify part numbers etc before you purchase of course for your specific application. there is a compressor kit available for them which gives you in cab control... which truly is a nice feature. You can price shop them of course, I believe my last set [replaced my bags after 5 years] came from summit racing.

installed pic, courtesy of etrailer..... lots of info there too.

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Unread 03-13-2014, 07:16 AM   #11
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OP, while air bag suspensions are very helpful for huge loads, you have no need whatsover of these great products. Your loaded trailer weighing 5000-5500 lb will have a safe tongue weight of no more than 750 pounds. If you buy an F-250 and put 750 pounds in the back and it sinks more than an inch, maybe an inch and a half, take it back.

While air suspension parts are a lifesaver for a guy towing a load that can't be balanced, like a travel trailer, or a wood chipper, a Jeep can be moved up or back on a trailer and needs no relief for the tongue weight that the poster above has with huge loads he describes. Waste of money for you.

Not only are the parts expensive, they affect handling since they introduce an engineering element not designed by the engineers that designed the suspension, they need attention to reset air pressure, and sometimes fail. An F-250 suspension is designed to have a tongue weight of more than 1000 pounds on it and does fine without any help. I am not against air bags. If you have 1500-2000 pounds of tongue weight from an RV or a piece of equipment on a bumper hitch, they are invaluable. But for a Jeep on a trailer, why bother.
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Unread 03-13-2014, 08:18 AM   #12
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Unread 03-13-2014, 08:28 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bordeauxman View Post
I am considering buying an extended cab pick-up truck for towing my rig to off road activities.

WHAT IS THE RECOMENDED MINIMUM PICK-UP FOR TOWING A 4000+ POUND JEEP ON A TRAILER?

If buying a Ford, would it be an F150 or F250? It needs enough power to make up highway hills with tow.

Thank you in advance.

You say you will park it at a vacation home and drive less than 2000 miles a year. I wouldn't spend much money. Unless you can lock it in a garage I would not get something too impressive or desirable being you won't be able to keep an eye on it. Air bags are not needed at all for your intended purpose, don't waste any money on that.

About any full size p/u esp a 3/4 ton or better can easily do what you are asking it to do. I would consider a weight distributing hitch and brakes but that is all you need.

I would get something older and get handy with tools or find a good mechanic. No need to dump $$ into to something you will park unprotected and use only occasionally.

I recently picked up a 79 Chevy dully one ton with a dump bed for 800 bucks. I have a total of about $1300 (timing chain, distributor and plugs, water pump and front drive shaft, starter) in it now and it is a great truck. I wouldn't want it for a daily driver but for me it is only for occasional use. It isn’t pretty but it works.
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Unread 03-14-2014, 04:43 AM   #14
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Ross, It will reside in a garage and I'm looking at 2005-2007 models with 100k miles. Also, it will make for a good rig for our weekend ski trips with the kids. I'm sure I'll use it more than I initially thought.
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Unread 03-14-2014, 06:52 AM   #15
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Ross, It will reside in a garage and I'm looking at 2005-2007 models with 100k miles. Also, it will make for a good rig for our weekend ski trips with the kids. I'm sure I'll use it more than I initially thought.
I would give Wilsonís idea about a van some serious thought, depending on need and availability for 4 wheel drive for your ski trips.
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