What vehicle are you towing with?

JaccFrost

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'05 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited 5.7L Hemi. Does great for us. We have a few long hauls if we hit different lakes and when I picked the boat up for the first time,  but the usual launch is only a 5-7 min drive.  AWD is pretty awesome on a wet ramp too.
 

drose01

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2015 F-150 platinum.  Ecoboost with Max tow package rated to pull 12k plus lbs.  Only pull 3 miles probably overkill a bit but don't even know there's a boat behind you. Pulling a loaded out 2016 2575 QSB so has a little weight on it. But only drive it to the lake and back. 
 

sunnyside360

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My first pontoon tow rig was a 2011 GMC Acadia which really struggled towing the boat. Then got a 2014 GMC Yukon Denali with a 6.2 liter engine and 400 plus hp which towed the boat very well.  I keep the boat stored in a large equipment storage barn and tow for all our outings which is about 45 minutes from home.  Don't ask what the gas mileage was when towing.


Recently got a 2016 GMC Yukon Denali.  Haven't towed with it yet since boating weather isn't here and the vehicle only has a few hundred miles on it but it won't be too many more weeks.  It has the same 6.2 Liter engine with 420 hp and 8 speed transmission.  I don't think there will be any issues but I doubt it will run in 8th gear much because the engine is only turning about 1200 rpm when traveling at 60 mph on the interstate w/o a trailer.
 

mattb

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Mine is an 03 Sierra 1500 HD with a 6.0, 4X4, 3:73.  Got a Diablo tuner for a easy little kick and tranny shift help.  As it is now, about 93,000 miles on the clock.  Will keep it for a long, long time.  My wife will pull it occasionally, 2 hr drive, when we camp and boat with her 13 Pilot, just got the Benny so she has not done that yet.  I took a test drive and it did OK, wouldn't pull it to Cumberland with that thing but two hours in Ohio, it'll be alright.      
 

Rockie69

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Mine is an 03 Sierra 1500 HD with a 6.0, 4X4, 3:73.  Got a Diablo tuner for a easy little kick and tranny shift help.  As it is now, about 93,000 miles on the clock.  Will keep it for a long, long time.  My wife will pull it occasionally, 2 hr drive, when we camp and boat with her 13 Pilot, just got the Benny so she has not done that yet.  I took a test drive and it did OK, wouldn't pull it to Cumberland with that thing but two hours in Ohio, it'll be alright.      

Matt, what's the tow capacity on that truck? My FIL just bought one as a farm truck. It's a sturdy ole gal. Nice truck. How much is the tuner? Easy to install?
 

mattb

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If I remember correctly,  9600 tow, 3300 payload, get your RPO codes off the glovebox sticker and search them.  Bought the tuner used for 300, plug into OBD, make your choices.  Check out their website, around 400 new.
 

lakeliving

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I now have a 2017 Silverado Z71. We've been looking at getting a travel trailer and I see most people run weight distributing hitches. I saw SpinZone mentioned it but is anyone else using one? Looks some manufacturers recommend them over 5000lbs which some of us are. Just curious.
 

Havasu

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I used to use a WD hitch when I towed my heavy SW boat (over 10k).  It did make a difference as it minimizes the bumper bounce.  The bars act as a counter-balance so it keeps the trailer level.  I stopped using it when I put air bags on my truck.
 

lakeliving

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Good to know. When we towed ours last week I noticed some bounce. I think I need to move the boat back and hopefully that will solve it. If you didn't go the bag route would you use it for pulling the benny?
 

tcpip95

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2016 Nissan Titan XD Turbo Diesel.
 

gnc1017

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I'd be very hesitant to move the boat back. You want tongue weight to prevent sway issues. If you have the proper tongue weight but have too much vehicle rear sag, that's where air bags or weight distribution hitches (more typical for trailers with electric brakes) come in.
 

Havasu

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Good to know. When we towed ours last week I noticed some bounce. I think I need to move the boat back and hopefully that will solve it. If you didn't go the bag route would you use it for pulling the benny?

Probably not.  Unless I was towing with a much lighter vehicle than I use now (2006 GMC Sierra Crew Cab 4x4 diesel with Allison 6 speed).  The Benny and the trailer aren't all that heavy for my tow rig.  I do pump up the bags a little for the Benny (maybe 20 lbs.) but for the SW boat it was like 80 lbs.  They certainly do help.
 

lakeliving

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I'd be very hesitant to move the boat back. You want tongue weight to prevent sway issues. If you have the proper tongue weight but have too much vehicle rear sag, that's where air bags or weight distribution hitches (more typical for trailers with electric brakes) come in.

Good point. I have surge brakes. I think I have too much tongue weight. Haven't been to a scale though to check.
 

gnc1017

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I'd check it first if any way possible but from what I've seen with many of these pontoon setups, although possible, I think it would be unlikely to have too much tongue weight.


I have a 2010 F150 and the air bags make a big difference. It is okay without them aired up for shorter trips (although I almost always air them up when pulling the boat anyways), but for longer trips, aired up is an absolute must for me.


Then again, we are also 6400+ lbs with the boat and trailer...


Depending on the size of the travel trailer, I'd seriously consider a WD hitch (unless you do air bags). And a TT hitch with anti-sway bars would be on my list too.
 

TomS

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We always used a WD setup when towing our horse trailer and it worked great with a 3/4t Avalanche and Suburban.
 

tcpip95

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Good to know. When we towed ours last week I noticed some bounce. I think I need to move the boat back and hopefully that will solve it. If you didn't go the bag route would you use it for pulling the benny?

Have you measured your tongue weight?  That's the first thing I'd do.  You want about 10% of the total weight on the tongue.  I went and bought a tongue weight scale and keep it in the truck.


Here's a good video that demonstrates the importance of proper tongue weight:

 
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Alicedream

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2014 F150 King Ranch V8 5.0 liter.  Purchased new in 2015.
 

Rockie69

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I put bags on my 6.0 2006 Denali Truck. Helped quite a bit.
 

sunnyside360

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I put bags on my 6.0 2006 Denali Truck. Helped quite a bit.

I agree.  My 2016 GMC Yukon Denali came with factory air load leveling system.   Huge difference from the previous Yukon.
 

mattb

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Locally, 03 Tahoe, 5.3 2WD, auto load level.  Longer trips, 03 Sierra, 1500HD 4wd.  I have my 2" drop ball mount inverted to raise 3/4".  Both vehicles tow nicely.
 
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