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Old 10-17-2017, 06:57 PM   #1
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Weights and Balance for 5.0TA and Canyon

We recently got home after picking up our new 5.0TA on the 5th. The return trip was 2,767 miles over 10 days. It included heavy stop-and-go traffic from Everett to Portland, steep grades and narrow twisting road from Lee Vining to Benton CA, and a lot of straight and level highway on I40.

My previous towing experience was with a much bigger truck and a much smaller trailer, so I donít really donít have a good point of comparison, but overall I was happy with the experience. I certainly knew I was towing a trailer, and there were times when either a strong cross-wind or concrete expansion joints would cause a perceptible oscillation, but it was never bad. I had no problem going as fast as I wanted to, which was usually 60-65 mph. Bottom line, I was very satisfied with the way the truck-trailer combination performed and handled.

Overall measured mileage for the return trip was 17.9 mpg. This compares to 28.4 mpg for the measured mileage for the 2,252-mile out-bound trip without the trailer.

We brought the truck to Chilliwack full of bedding, clothing, kitchenware and other essentials. After pick-up this was transferred to the trailer, and we stocked the cupboards and refrigerator with groceries. We had nothing that was particularly heavy, though, and still had empty cabinets in the kitchen and dinette areas. In New Mexico, I took the opportunity to use a Cat scale at a Loves truck stop. At the time, I had a full fresh water tank, and one days use in the gray and black tanks which registered at 1/3 and Empty.

These are the weights:
o 3,885 lbs -- Standard empty weight (without options, from ETI web site)
o 4,286 lbs -- Empty weight of my trailer (from nameplate)
o 4,940 lbs -- Measured weight of trailer
o 5,460 lbs -- Measured weight of truck alone
o 760 lbs -- Measured weight of kingpin on truck

This gives 15.4% of the trailer weight on the kingpin. This is lower than the 19% to 25% the Ownerís Manual says it should be. I donít see any good way to add weight to the front of the trailer. Emptying the fresh water tank should increase the pin weight percent a little, but when I specifically asked about this during orientation, I was told it was not necessary.

This also gives a gross weight for the truck plus kingpin of 6,220 pounds, compared to the GVWR on the doorpost decal of 6,200. Adding weight to the front of the trailer is not an option, even if I had a way to do it.

I seem to be operating under the recommended pin weight, and at the limit of what the Canyon is rated for, but so far I am satisfied with the performance there.

Trademasters told me that there are many others with the same truck-trailer combination. Can any of you share your weights and towing experience?
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Old 10-17-2017, 07:38 PM   #2
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Different truck and an older 5.0TA, but the heaviest I've measured the pin, and I've done it a few times, was a bit lower at 728 lbs. I've always thought the holding tank contents make the biggest difference. As such it can vary an awful lot as you travel.

On edit: if this works, here's a link to Jon's real world weight list.
http://lakeshoreimages.com/spreadsheets/Weight.xls
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Old 10-17-2017, 07:46 PM   #3
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Just curious if you had any issues turning at tight angles? Does not look like you would. Thanks for picture and info!

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Old 10-17-2017, 09:14 PM   #4
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Also does the steering feel light at hi-way speed ?
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Old 10-17-2017, 10:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by padlin View Post
Different truck and an older 5.0TA, but the heaviest I've measured the pin, and I've done it a few times, was a bit lower at 728 lbs. I've always thought the holding tank contents make the biggest difference. As such it can vary an awful lot as you travel.

On edit: if this works, here's a link to Jon's real world weight list.
http://lakeshoreimages.com/spreadsheets/Weight.xls
What was the trailer weight that went with that pin weight?

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Old 10-17-2017, 10:04 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kent View Post
Just curious if you had any issues turning at tight angles? Does not look like you would. Thanks for picture and info!

Cheers
I haven't tried anything very tight, but no problems yet.

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Old 10-17-2017, 10:05 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Devil Dog View Post
Also does the steering feel light at hi-way speed ?
No, the steering always felt solid.

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Old 10-17-2017, 10:19 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmchamplin View Post
These are the weights:
o 3,885 lbs -- Standard empty weight (without options, from ETI web site)
o 4,286 lbs -- Empty weight of my trailer (from nameplate)
o 4,940 lbs -- Measured weight of trailer
o 5,460 lbs -- Measured weight of truck alone
o 760 lbs -- Measured weight of kingpin on truck

This gives 15.4% of the trailer weight on the kingpin. This is lower than the 19% to 25% the Ownerís Manual says it should be.
Of the small sample of 5.0 and 5.0TA in the spreadsheet, pin weight fraction varies from 12% to 22%... with half of them under 19%; that seems to work for those owners.

The base, dry, empty 5.0TA only has 15% pin weight, so a target of 19% to 25% seems unreasonable to me, especially with as much storage space in the back as in the front. 25% of the GVWR of 5500 pounds would be 1375 pounds, which is within the ratings of common hitches but unreasonable for any truck commonly suggested for towing the 5.0TA; this could only reasonably be an upper limit, not a goal.

Although a fifth-wheel trailer typically can handle a higher tongue (pin) weight fraction than a conventional trailer, it doesn't need it for stability or any other reason that I can think of. Unless someone can provide a good reason for the 19% value, I don't see any reason to be concerned about the 15.4% value.
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Old 10-18-2017, 09:42 AM   #9
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Duramax for me

We had about the same weights as yours coming back to TX after pick up in April. Towing a TA was a lot different than our previous Scamp 19 and we'll be switching to the diesel next season. With the 2015 gas engine I only got 14.9 mpg (down 1.5 from the Scamp) but lousy performance in any uphill or headwind.
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Old 10-18-2017, 09:59 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmchamplin View Post
We recently got home after picking up our new 5.0TA on the 5th. The return trip was 2,767 miles over 10 days. It included heavy stop-and-go traffic from Everett to Portland, steep grades and narrow twisting road from Lee Vining to Benton CA, and a lot of straight and level highway on I40.

My previous towing experience was with a much bigger truck and a much smaller trailer, so I donít really donít have a good point of comparison, but overall I was happy with the experience. I certainly knew I was towing a trailer, and there were times when either a strong cross-wind or concrete expansion joints would cause a perceptible oscillation, but it was never bad. I had no problem going as fast as I wanted to, which was usually 60-65 mph. Bottom line, I was very satisfied with the way the truck-trailer combination performed and handled.

Overall measured mileage for the return trip was 17.9 mpg. This compares to 28.4 mpg for the measured mileage for the 2,252-mile out-bound trip without the trailer.

We brought the truck to Chilliwack full of bedding, clothing, kitchenware and other essentials. After pick-up this was transferred to the trailer, and we stocked the cupboards and refrigerator with groceries. We had nothing that was particularly heavy, though, and still had empty cabinets in the kitchen and dinette areas. In New Mexico, I took the opportunity to use a Cat scale at a Loves truck stop. At the time, I had a full fresh water tank, and one days use in the gray and black tanks which registered at 1/3 and Empty.

These are the weights:
o 3,885 lbs -- Standard empty weight (without options, from ETI web site)
o 4,286 lbs -- Empty weight of my trailer (from nameplate)
o 4,940 lbs -- Measured weight of trailer
o 5,460 lbs -- Measured weight of truck alone
o 760 lbs -- Measured weight of kingpin on truck

This gives 15.4% of the trailer weight on the kingpin. This is lower than the 19% to 25% the Ownerís Manual says it should be. I donít see any good way to add weight to the front of the trailer. Emptying the fresh water tank should increase the pin weight percent a little, but when I specifically asked about this during orientation, I was told it was not necessary.

This also gives a gross weight for the truck plus kingpin of 6,220 pounds, compared to the GVWR on the doorpost decal of 6,200. Adding weight to the front of the trailer is not an option, even if I had a way to do it.

I seem to be operating under the recommended pin weight, and at the limit of what the Canyon is rated for, but so far I am satisfied with the performance there.

Trademasters told me that there are many others with the same truck-trailer combination. Can any of you share your weights and towing experience?

Congrats on your positive experience, and thx lots for the informative post. Almost eerily validating, as this is exactly what we hope for next month. Down to identical driving habits.

*Did you have any significant X winds, and if so, how did you do with them?

*How did you do with jake braking, if any?

*Did you have lots of stuff in your truck? Are you anxious about your GVWR? FYI, this seems widely scofflawed among other posters, but I think we both take safety and overloading seriously.

Thx again...
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