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Old 02-17-2011, 12:37 PM   #1
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My wife and I are new to the world of Zingers, having graduated from a tent trailer. Just purchased a new 19RDS model and it will remain at the dealer till April up here in Minnesota. In the meantime we need to acquire a tow vehicle. My question: what vehicle towing capacity rating should I be looking for, considering a normal amount of gear carried for two persons. The tongue weight seems higher than that of other small trailers, so is that a factor, too, in choosing a vehicle? BTW, I'd be interested in knowing what tow vehicles others are using to pull their 19RDS, and with what success.

Thanks for the input -- this is sure a great forum! --John
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Old 02-17-2011, 12:58 PM   #2
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A little more info would be helpful... Do you want a truck or an suv?

You need something with a tow capacity greater than the GVW of your trailer and can handle the tongue weight of your trailer. You will probably want to get a weight distribution hitch installed as well.



I am not that familiar w/ trucks but as for SUV's I know the nissan armada and the toyota sequioa can comfortably tow it. (pay attention to the year and capacities on the sequioa as the older models couldn't tow as much weight). I think I have seen some posts about tahoes and suburbans being able to tow that much also. I tow w/ an armada. I just bought my zinger so I have only towed it home from the dealer but it did pretty well. It used to tow my horse trailer, a car trailer and a boat trailer like they weren't even there. That is with a tow capacity of 9100 lbs. Myzinger has a gvw of 7709 lbs.
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Old 02-17-2011, 10:04 PM   #3
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One thing for certain, as you get into the tow vehicle purchase, you want the tow package all ready on the unit no adds. Most factory tow package add a bunch of items. Like Transmission cooler ( a lot of units now come with the trans coolers but they are smaller than the tow package) Comes with a true wiring harness less subjection to rust larger Alternators and some even bigger radiators. Do not fall in love with the color and allow them to try to add this other stuff. A lot of sales people think because they add a hitch they have added the tow package. Other info needed is how yu are going to use the vehicle while not towing. At this point all most any of the big five 1/2 pick ups eqpuipt right will do the job. but will not if you want to grade handle some of the bigger units. I would recomend that you find a dealer with a good size commercial fleet department and work with those guys. These guys are use to working and specing out vehicles for comercial customers. and generaly have more knowledge in the field

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Old 02-17-2011, 11:44 PM   #4
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I pull my 19RDS with a 2009 Dodge Ram 1500 Quad Cab, with the 5.7L Hemi. Pulls great. As others mentioned, get the tow package that has the hitch, prewired, tranny and oil cooler, tow mode for the transmission, computer controlled anti-sway, and some other things. It has surprisingacceleration with the trailer.

Last june we towed from Texas to Minnesota with no issues, no struggles, no temp issues.

Lastly you'll need weight dist and sway control bars (but don't get friction based bars - the 19rds is so short the friction ones don't help prevent it at all - just helps stop it)

That's my opinion.
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Old 02-18-2011, 02:08 AM   #5
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Additionally make an honest appraisal of your intentions and whether or not you will stay with that sized unit, or, possibly intend to go bigger. If you are going to stay in that sized unit for the expected life of the tow vehicle, you will be fine, but if you decide that you like a hard sided camper and decide in the near future to go bigger, you could place yourself into a position where the tow vehicle would not handle the new purchase.



As I said, you have to make an honest to yourself decision.

Additionally, in my opinion, it is always better to have more capacity in your tow vehicle than what you actually need. Not saying to buy aTopkick to pull your trailer, but if you have more capacity, if you ever have a panic braking episode, or get caught in a severe crosswind, pull a severe grade, etc., then you would appreciate having more than enough truck.



A few years ago when we had one of the hurricanes actually make it all the way to Ohio, I was returning from out west. We were coming across I-70 from Indianapolis and having a truck with a long enough wheelbase, we were not affected by the wind, etc. It definitely was white knuckle due to the amount of rain coming down (I couldn't see the side mirrors at all and we got stuck in traffic and couldn't get over to get off the highway). At least I had enough truck to where I wasn't worried about losing control.



Having another thought, take a very good look, (or have a secondary opinion) on the factory installed hitch. Some of the oem hitches are, to say the least lacking. I have a Chevy 2500HD and the oem hitches that were installed (up thru model yr 2010 I believe) had weld failures. GM had farmed them out to the lowest bidder (I had read they came from Mexico).



We replaced the oem hitch with a GOOD Reese hitch. Cost less than our 6 month insurance premium on the truck. There is a definite improvement in the feel when towing. We were getting some distortion in the oem hitch from the weight distribution torque. So I am just trying to say to evaluate that also.



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Old 02-19-2011, 12:52 PM   #6
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I will admitour truck is overkill for our 19RDSE, (see signature below) but we had it long before we bought the Zinger. This is our third TT. On a level stretch of road, you can't tell you are towing anything. And getting 14-16 MPG while towing is a bonus. It has the factory towing package. And diesels live forever. We are tickling 200K as I write this. As you mentioned, the tongue weight is well above average for this size trailer. The figure in the brochure is dry. i.e. no water (the tank is up front under the bed, and so is the water heater), no propane, etc. Ours is usually around 615# with a small amount of water and ready to travel. Water is 8.34 # per gallon

When truck shopping, don't believe the salesman. Most don't have a clue. If you are buying off the lot, you can check the actual tow rating on the spot.

As was said above, if you even THINK you might want to upgrade in a few years, buy more truck than you need. It's a lot cheaper than trading in a year or two. Edited by: rv-rick
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:25 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the replys! Appreciate the input and I learned a lot. We're pretty confident that this is the size for us (19 ft.) for years to come. We're about to "pull the trigger" on buying a GMC Yukon -- anyone else towing a 19RDS with a either a Yukon or Tahoe? The listed towing rating is 7800 pounds.
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:55 AM   #8
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Remember that your 19 is a 19 in name only. Overall length is closer to 24'.



Again, before you sign on the dotted line, check the specs on the actual vehicle. Just because the brochure says it can tow 7800#, there is a lot of fine print regarding options required for that limit. If you are buying off the lot or used, the information will be posted on the truck. Some are on the driver's door jamb. Others are inside the glove box door.

Good luck and happy traveling.
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Old 02-21-2011, 10:42 PM   #9
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We just recently upgraded our tow vehicle, and before the purchase I told the salesman why we were out buying a new truck, he told us to take the vehicle home and hook our Zinger 30KB up to the truck and go drive around for a bit. You might tell your salesman your intentions and ask if it is possible to do the same. I would have never guessed they would allow us to do that. Buying that new tow vehicle was a big expense, you truly want to make sure it travels down the road the way you want it. Our first tow vehicle was a 2008 Escalade...the numbers on paper said we could tow our new RV....did not work out so well. We ended up buying a 2009 Ford F150 to pull ours. Big difference between shocks and leaf springs when towing.
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Old 02-22-2011, 02:56 AM   #10
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I went out to www.autotrader.com and looked at prices of new Yukon -vs- a Chevy 2500HD, crew cab,4x4 gas engine. The 2500HD is less expensive, enough less expensive that you could put on really good Bilstein shocks, sway bars front and back, a truck cap, Bedrug in the bed and still have money left over.



The new pickups ride just as good as a SUV and with a crew cab you have the same seating room.



I would assume the price differential holds true when you get into used vehicles also.



There are lots of options depending on the size of your budget. Spend the time and investigate all options. As I said in my post above, having more than enough truck provides for a much more enjoyable towing experience.



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Old 03-09-2011, 09:17 AM   #11
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get something big enough for your next upgrade cause they seem to sneak up on you!!
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Old 05-13-2011, 12:28 AM   #12
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i am buying a zinger 19rd and going to pull by town and county van
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Old 05-13-2011, 02:09 AM   #13
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We tow our 2009 Zinger 19RD with a 2008 F150 with a 4.2L 2wd automatic. It does okay. You sure no it is back there when the wind is blowing strong and also the big rigs pass you. If we keep it at 60 MPH it does fine. Gas mileage is terrible get between 8-10 but heck when I'm not pulling I get 15. Wish I would of bought a 5.4L. It just wasn't in the budget and also when I bought the truck I didn't have an idea that I would be buying a travel trailer. We talked about getting a pop up. But for the price difference we had to get the Zinger. One thing I need to get is the weight distribution hitch. Thatmight help.
Happy Camping!

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Old 05-13-2011, 09:21 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seanixus
i am buying a zinger 19rd and going to pull by town and county van






You didn't say what year you have, but I just looked up 2011 specs. With the towing package, the towing limit is 3600#. That is the upper end of the Class II rating. That also usually has a tongue weight limit of 350#.

My 2010 19RD weighed 3688# from the factory, not counting propane, water, plus foodand everything else you will add. The tongue weight of mine is just under 600#



That said; if your Town & Country is the old style full size van with a V-8, it's a whole different ballgame, but you still need to check your rating, especially the tongue weight.Edited by: rv-rick
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