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Old 02-11-2013, 05:50 PM   #1
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We are a family of 3 (DS 3 yo) and 2 busy dogs living in the Pacific Northwest.We are pretty much 3 season weekend campers with the odd week long trip, mostly within a 4 hour drive from home. We do state and provincial parks mostly so some dry camping or power only. Our last TT was a Jayco rear slide bunk model. Too cramped!

We love the "early" 2013 models without the ODK as they have the bike door access which would be great for storing dog crates and gear. We love the 29SS for the bunkhouse privacy and play area for kids but are concerned it might be too much trailer.Other option is the 26 BH but we don't like the lack of a door for the bunk area but do like the shorter length. This is a trailer we hope to keep for 5 to 10 years.

Our TV is a '08 Armada with tow pkg. 9000 lb tow cap, 900 lb max hitch weight, ~1400 lbs payload and 123 " WB.

Looking for feedback on towability of the 29ss with our fullsize SUV. And pros and cons between the two models. Are there other makes/models that compare well?Thanks!
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Old 02-12-2013, 01:11 AM   #2
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We have a 29SS and while we love the trailer, the tongue weight when loaded is just over #1000. That doesn't leave you much payload for the 3 of you plus the dogs and WD hitch. I did add an extra battery so that is added directly to tongue weight but it's also something you might need when dry camping too. Edited by: 8iron
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Old 02-18-2013, 01:10 AM   #3
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We had seen the 26BH at a show and went to a dealer to buy it. When we got there they had a 29SS and we ended up getting the 29SS because of the rear bedroom. Two dogs, kids, and grandkids. Its perfect for us. We tow it with a 5.7L Tundra. Was a little worried about the extra length and weight compared to our old camper but it really tows better.
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Old 02-18-2013, 03:57 AM   #4
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Thanks all!

We've got a few things we're contemplating, including a competing brand: Cruiser Viewfinder 28BHSS. Anyone looked at these? Really appreciate the feedback.

The 'downgrading' of the warranty has me concerned with the STs but every brand has it's issues. We've been so lucky so far that we never had a single problem with either of our previous Jayco trailers. We are in western Canada (Vancouver) and have significant rain out here. Leaky slides is something I am NOT interested in dealing with.

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Old 02-18-2013, 10:49 AM   #5
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Stick with what you have and go by your gut feeling. I'm just saying!

Edited by: LeBo
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Old 04-29-2013, 01:49 AM   #6
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We have a family of 3, we decided to go with the 26BH, we spend most of our times outside, plus now the two older kids being 11 & 13 yrs old, started to camp in a tent beside the trailer, so a 29SS would be too much wasted space for us, a 26 BH is perfect and can accommode all 5 of us easily.
2012 Sunset Trail ST26BH Reserve

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Old 04-29-2013, 11:50 AM   #7
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honestly, I think both are comparable in weight and length. That said, I think both are too much trailer for the armada. Why? because I used to tow my TT with an armada. My TT is a similar floor plan to the 28BH but lighter and shorter. mine is 30' and weighs 7000 lbs loaded. My tongue weight is close to 1000 lbs. my armada was a 2004 LE 4x4 model. My armada was also rated to tow 9100 lbs but my payload was way under what you are listing. with 2 adults, 1 preschool aged child and a 70 lb dog we only had 800 lbs of available payload. this number was obtained at the cat scales with a full tank of fuel. I advise you to go weigh your armada with the whole family, any pets and gear that you intend to take in the vehicle when camping. Take the scaled weight and subtract it from the armadas gvwr to get your available payload. Take the scaled weight and subtract it from the armadas gcwr to get your adjusted towing capacity. you will find your numbers are going to be a lot lower than you think. remember the TT tongue weight should be approx 13-15% of the loaded TT weight. Both of these TT that you list will likely weigh at least between 8000-9000 lbs when fully loaded. that means a tongue weight of 1040-1350 lbs or more.

Now the other end of this is how the Armada handled pulling the 7000 lb zinger I mentioned above. I had a Reese dual cam for wdh/sway control and after many adjustments, measurements and trips to the scale we got that dialed in right (hint, turn armada off and set up wdh without loaded leveling suspension engaged). handling was really bad. Every vehicle (car, SUV, semi etc) that passed would push the rig all over the road. The trailer always felt like it was the tail wagging the dog. Even with E rated Michelin LT tires. The armada struggled big time in the mountains. I would gear way down but still have trouble keeping the transmission cool on a long steep grade. The real trouble came in vA going down a long twisting 2 lane 7% downgrade. I stopped at the truck pull off at the top of the hill, went down the mountain in lower gears than going up and tried every other trick I knew from 20 yrs of towing horse trailers. that TT proceeded to push the armada down the mountain. I used the brakes way more than I wanted to because the engine wasn't strong enough to hold the TT back. By the bottom I had almost completely cooked my brakes. Never again is what I told Dh. The armada was traded in on the F250 in my signature before I was willing to come out of the flat lands again. Now there is no more white knuckle driving. I took that same mountain road last year with the F250. it was like night and day. The engine held the TT the whole way down. I had to pump the brakes 1 or 2 times and that was it.I'm merely telling you what my experience was with a TT that weighs loaded just over what the ones you are looking at dry, IMHO if you want a TT that big, you need to get at least a 3/4 ton SUV, van or truck (if not a 1 ton van or truck).best of luck to you.Edited by: anaro

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Old 05-03-2013, 04:38 AM   #8
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I agree 100% with anaro. We have a 2012 29SS. We bought it for the same reason, we liked the separate bunk house section in back for the kids. We originally pulled it with a 2008 Chrysler Aspen SUV with the 5.7 and experienced the same behavior as anaro explained. No a comfortable feeling by any means. We changed tow vehicles to a 2010 Ford F350 Crew Cab with the 6.4 diesel FX4 and it is like night and day.
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