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Old 07-12-2015, 02:59 PM   #11
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Hi Loren or Cathy. I laughed right out loud when I read your first sentence. Yeah, I have probably replaced a million or two rivets. It's a wonder we found time to camp for it! It didn't compromise any structural integrity of the the cabinets etc. for us, nor did it cause any leaking, it was more just an "awww man!! You gotta be kidding me!" sorta thing. And of course, I would have to replace the rivets at least on the sides or back of the Casita to make it look good. All about appearances I say...
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Old 07-12-2015, 03:20 PM   #12
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FJ with 21' on mostly level terrain would probably be ok. You will need your WD hitch. If you are planning on regular trips in hilly or mountainous terrain, I would suggest that the 19' would likely be a better combination.
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Old 07-12-2015, 03:25 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by ice-breaker View Post
FJ with 21' on mostly level terrain would probably be ok. You will need your WD hitch. If you are planning on regular trips in hilly or mountainous terrain, I would suggest that the 19' would likely be a better combination.
The Tacoma went through a major design change after 2000 (I've owned 4) and the current model I use is a 4 dr 4WD long bed with a V6, rated to tow 6400 lbs. My 21 weighed in at 4100 pounds loaded for travel and it tows it just fine, even in the mountains. The automatic tranny is geared very differently than my last one. I get 13-13.5 mpg towing.
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Old 07-12-2015, 03:29 PM   #14
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The Tacoma went through a major design change after 2000 (I've owned 4) and the current model I use is a 4 dr 4WD long bed with a V6, rated to tow 6400 lbs. My 21 weighed in at 4100 pounds loaded for travel and it tows it just fine, even in the mountains. The automatic tranny is geared very differently than my last one. I get 13-13.5 mpg towing.
I like tha Tacoma also and would definitely consider one when my FJ needs replacing. But the op did specifically ask about towing a21 or 19 with his FJ.
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Old 07-12-2015, 03:37 PM   #15
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Hi Laura! Now you've gone and done it! You questioned my love of my FJ. (snip)

Then I found...oh my goodness...my PERFECT vehicle. You know how some people cannot bear to even think of camping in something other than lets say Escape? Well, that was me with the FJ. When I saw that 5 year old, yellow and white FJ with 37,000 miles on it (snip)
I would never question the love for an FJ, as I love mine as well! I looked and test drove them off and on for 3 years before realizing it was time to give up the Trooper (which I also loved) and get a new vehicle. We bought it new and I've never regretted it. Yeah, it has some issues with visibility, but you get used to it. Mine is brick red.

And yes, I'm thoroughly bummed I can't use it to pull the size trailer we want. I could have settled on the 21', but with what I need to haul, I didn't feel comfortable using the FJ for that. And Dirk does need to replace his truck, so he gets a new vehicle and he gets to drive my FJ when I'm out of town with the 5.0TA.

And I get to drive my FJ the rest of the time. Win, win!
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Old 07-12-2015, 04:41 PM   #16
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Welcome. I'll add my two cents to the discussion.

1. I really enjoy towing my 21 with a full size pickup. Its overkill for 80% of the miles, but I've bumped into the remaining 20% on occasion and been pleased to have more truck than trailer. Don't forget cargo weight is a concern, potentially with more toys as the boys get older. This is coming from someone who mountain travels (well, 4000 feet anyways).

2. 21 bed is great. Making it properly can be a pain, but there are ways around that issue. As a solo, the walls never were an issue.

9 My laundry goes in the wheel well cubby under the fridge. If its filled to the brim, thats two machine loads and time to do laundry.


I like the Andersen hitch system, as its relatively lightweight and easy to manage. Value of it might be more for you if you go with the FJ.

I don't have the storage box (can add it) as between the truck bed and the massive space under the 21 bed I have lots of room already. Most really like it, especially with a SUV TV.

YMMV.
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Old 07-12-2015, 04:55 PM   #17
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Thanks so far everyone! So I kinda am getting that the FJ would safely (albeit maybe just marginally so) tow the 21'. Thats good news. I am going to talk to the Toyota dealer to see if towing at the upper limits will wear out the FJ quicker, but then again, we aren't full timing with it. More like 10-12 weekends a year with maybe a couple thousand mile trip to Arkansas thrown in. Why there?? It's called the inlaws. No other reason...

I just like the option that if we really wanted the 21' for all the wrong reasons, we can get that with only a majority of panic. We had seen a 19' and like it, but we have not yet seen the 21'
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Old 07-12-2015, 05:29 PM   #18
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I decided to verify your FJ Cruiser numbers and found that the gross combined weight rating is 9,200 lbs. If you find a better number plug that into what follows. This rating is the weight of everything you are carrying in, on or attached as a tow to your vehicle and it includes things you may not realize, for example:

Passengers
Pets
Fuel - 19 gallons at 6.3 lbs = 119
Gear
Tongue weight of tow
Towed vehicle and all the contents inside such vehicle (axle weight).
FJ Cruiser - 4,050
Roof mounted items

How does the 19 and 21 compare? The best source of trailer weights is a series of weighins conducted by Frederick the Scaleman at different fiberglass rallies. He weighs and records the trailers of participants as they arrive at the rally. He has weighed 10 Escape 19's and 5 Escape 21's. His results are published as Trailer Weights in the Real World.

The 21 averages a hefty 434 lb tongue weight compared to the 358 lb average on the 19. The balance axle weight of the trailersare closer with the 21 averaging 3,471 and the 19 a 3,327 average. The tongue weight and the axle weight need to be combined to determine the towed vehicle weight.

The way I read the numbers is you have 5,150 lbs to play with. I take the GCWR less the curb weight of the vehicle. If you added a Escape 19 to your FJ Cruiser with its 358 lb tongue weight you have 1,465 lbs for passengers, fuel and gear. An Escape 21 leaves 1,245 lbs for your use.

You need to evaluate the weights of what you are putting into the FJ and how that affects your GCWR. From those numbers you can make a better judgement of the appropriateness of the FJ with your camping methods and style.
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Old 07-12-2015, 07:32 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by fudge_brownie View Post
I decided to verify your FJ Cruiser numbers and found that the gross combined weight rating is 9,200 lbs. If you find a better number plug that into what follows. This rating is the weight of everything you are carrying in, on or attached as a tow to your vehicle and it includes things you may not realize, for example:

Passengers
Pets
Fuel - 19 gallons at 6.3 lbs = 119
Gear
Tongue weight of tow
Towed vehicle and all the contents inside such vehicle (axle weight).
FJ Cruiser - 4,050
Roof mounted items
Excellent - real numbers!

One note... I'm not sure where the 4,050 pound weight for the vehicle came from, but if it is a curb weight, it already includes the fuel.
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Old 07-12-2015, 07:50 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by fudge_brownie View Post
How does the 19 and 21 compare? The best source of trailer weights is a series of weighins conducted by Frederick the Scaleman at different fiberglass rallies. He weighs and records the trailers of participants as they arrive at the rally. He has weighed 10 Escape 19's and 5 Escape 21's.
The real-world loaded weights are good, especially for those who don't know how much they will carry in the trailer, but I don't think they're a good way to compare two models. With a very small sample of each model, you could easily end up comparing a lightly loaded 19' to a heavily loaded 21' (exaggerating the difference), or vice versa. Even worse, the list doesn't give any indication of how the trailers are equipped or how much cargo they are carrying.

Most options (such as a microwave oven) weigh the same regardless of which trailer they are going into, and the difference between base dry weights of the two models from Escape specs is 440 pounds (200 kg), so I think that's the difference to consider when choosing.

There is over 1000 pounds difference between the lightest and heaviest examples of the 19' in that list. The average is no more valid for a specific buyer than either extreme.
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