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Old 11-01-2016, 04:23 PM   #11
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I figured that is what you guys understood as a toter and I still do not know what to call a tractor with a big box on the back with a 40K hitch. I have found several that will work in the $90 to $150 K asking price range. Cannot figure out what dictates the difference in price because of miles on the chasis/mtr not being disclosed, year designations meaning the year that the it was stretched and box put on, etc. Does seem like miles on donor truck almost do not count one way or the other.
Next to nothing is available down South( in am in S Louisiana). Most are on L or R coast or in Midwest.
Thanks again for the guidance.
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Old 11-01-2016, 04:28 PM   #12
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Thanks guys. Just the type advice I was looking for and thanks for the pic.

I will not be pulling a gooseneck or 5th wheel and only need a hitch for my two different trailers so no problem with license. Fairly sure that I do not need more than 32 foot box room wise and would like a shorter total length for easier
maneuverability. I have been busted in Texas for being over total length with my MH/trailer so the shorter length toter will help in that regard as well.
since I'm in Texas (NW Houston to be precise) - I'm curious to hear more about when / where & how you were busted for over length.

I'm 42 feet tip to tail plus hitch.
Add in a tow-bar & jeep wrangler I'm nearly 62 feet.
If I'm towing the 22 foot trailer I'm over 65 feet.

According to this chart I'm over length even with the jeep in 18 states
and in another 18 states (32 total) I'm over length with the 22 foot trailer.

Only 8 states permit anything over 65 feet.




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So it looks as though you guys think that a twin screw might be overkill and added expense and maintenance for what I will be doing? I have always done the complete service and most of the repairs on my MH myself and have heard that these things are easier to work on. Any experience with that?
If i were pulling a heavy load (aka stacker), I'd want the added capacity of the 2nd axle...just for the margin of safety and the extra set of brakes.

Even at my (seemingly light weight) 36k lbs, i wish i had some extra braking capability.

If you can afford the 4 extra tires every 6 or so years i'd go for it....figure 500 bucks a tire thats only 333 dollars cost (per year) over a single axle....i burn more fuel than that per quarter back and forth to virginia etc.

another benefit - the extra set of tires means youre not completely dead where you are if you ever have a flat.

Maintenance is pretty low on our coaches - given that these are purpose built chassis that are designed to run 1M miles w/ only an in-frame needed around 750k miles....yeah stuff breaks...but these trucks can be serviced almost anywhere (including truck stops).

I do what i can on our coach - but so far thats been limited to (43 quart) oil / filter changes & fuel filters. I had a rear spring (bushing) go bad & to have the axle dropped & all the spring bushings replaced AND a full alignment done it only cost me 1000 bucks (i don't have the equipment to drop a class 8 tractor trailer drive axle).

We have close to 150k miles on our brake (shoes) and they might be approaching 50% wear....i think we (campers) do a lot more stop & go than most class 8 tractors.

our trucks are designed to haul 80k lbs.... and i rarely see my trans temp come off the peg at 125* (f) - even at 43k lbs....im not even beginning to stress our coach.

MOST pusher coaches (with their tiny 8-ish liter engines) leave the factory at or near their maximum GVWR...thats why a lot of the manufactures are using wider tires on the new coaches now....theyre maxed out from day 1!
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Old 11-01-2016, 04:31 PM   #13
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When I was busted in Texas, the cop stopped us(a buddy got busted as well) and questioned us initially about being pro racers and did not believe us until we showed him our Porsche Club racer cars with the club racing decals. So then he drug out the tape and we were both over the 65 ft overall length and we did "NOT" have temp permits.
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Old 11-01-2016, 04:43 PM   #14
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I figured that is what you guys understood as a toter and I still do not know what to call a tractor with a big box on the back with a 40K hitch. I have found several that will work in the $90 to $150 K asking price range. Cannot figure out what dictates the difference in price because of miles on the chasis/mtr not being disclosed, year designations meaning the year that the it was stretched and box put on, etc. Does seem like miles on donor truck almost do not count one way or the other.
Next to nothing is available down South( in am in S Louisiana). Most are on L or R coast or in Midwest.
Thanks again for the guidance.
somewhere on this site is a list of dealers - i got our coach (from a private seller) in St. Louis (he was pulling a stacker, briefly, and was upgrading to a twin screw).

my seller had his unit consigned with Flying A Motorsports....i looked for a good 18 months til i found the configuration we were looking for.

I'd keep an eye on the dealers and eBay - i used to have a bot run on eBay for all the manufacture names "haulmark rv" "show hauler" "renegade" and "toter home" - many of the listings are at dealers.
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Old 11-01-2016, 04:48 PM   #15
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When I started down this road, I just wanted a class-8 tractor with a big sleeper "singled" for towing heavy tag along stuff. Interestingly, the gentleman I spoke to (some shop in Canada recommended on another hdt forum) recommended against a singled out class-8 for tag along towing, because there would not be enough weight over the axle for optimal traction.

That is what started me looking at complete conversions. Unfortunately, once I got looking at conversions, I wanted a motor home! Even though I now have the power to tow three of my boats, it is too doggone long to tow it. So, I am thrilled with my motorhome, but I still have to tow the boat with my pickup
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Old 11-01-2016, 05:06 PM   #16
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When busted, we were in NW Texas on the direct route from Dallas to Denver in nowhere land. Damn your state is big! We were brought into a tiny town and hauled into court but luckily the Judge was out that day so the cop escorted us back to the county line and we headed on to the race track near Denver. My total length is 66 ft with the 20ft stacker.

Nice Jeep. Do you offroad it? Hummer advises against dingy towing H1s unless the drive shafts are pulled plus I am always hard whellin off road and occasionally bust stuff and kill the truck so need the trailer to drag it back it home to repair it. I carry spare drive shafts, half shafts, etc so what has broken lately? Steering box and radiator! Never the stuff you have on hand. Use the stacker for race and street cars.

The H1 Hummer on a heavy utility trailer is the "light" load I pull so I now know to get the twin screw based on your advice. Also think 500+hp might be wise as well. Looks like I am sorta cutting out a lot of possibilities which may narrow my choices?
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Old 11-02-2016, 01:31 AM   #17
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When busted, we were in NW Texas on the direct route from Dallas to Denver in nowhere land. Damn your state is big! We were brought into a tiny town and hauled into court but luckily the Judge was out that day so the cop escorted us back to the county line and we headed on to the race track near Denver. My total length is 66 ft with the 20ft stacker.
YUP....more than 850 miles from lousiana to new mexico.
Any idea what the fine could have been?

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Nice Jeep. Do you offroad it? Hummer advises against dingy towing H1s unless the drive shafts are pulled plus I am always hard whellin off road and occasionally bust stuff and kill the truck so need the trailer to drag it back it home to repair it. I carry spare drive shafts, half shafts, etc so what has broken lately? Steering box and radiator! Never the stuff you have on hand. Use the stacker for race and street cars.

The H1 Hummer on a heavy utility trailer is the "light" load I pull so I now know to get the twin screw based on your advice. Also think 500+hp might be wise as well. Looks like I am sorta cutting out a lot of possibilities which may narrow my choices?
Our ('12) Jeep Wrangler (sport) w/ soft top tips the scale around 4200 lbs - if it weren't for the rear view cameras we wouldn't even know it was back there.

Ours is mostly a "mall crawler" we've wheeled it several times (virginia, arizona & central texas). Ive boosted it 1.5 inches but am about to lift it 3 inches - I've been waiting to wear out the factory tires from towing it behind the coach.

Our Wrangler is a manual trans, but all Wranglers have a manual transfer case - so Mopar/Jeep says tow 'em in park (auto) or gear (manual) and put the transfer case in Neutral....mopar even makes a factory harness that uses weather tight connectors (plugs into the factory harness) and allows direct connection to the primary tow vehicle 7 pin connector for use of the factory (jeep) tail lights....no extra wiring or lights needed.
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Old 11-02-2016, 04:26 PM   #18
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Check the front end and tire specs along with the actual front axle weight before you buy anything. Some of these coaches are heavy on the front. Renegade started to change over their specs a few years ago from 12K to 18K. We run 315 steer tires up front and a lot of the newer coaches do the same.

Like some of the guys said, good buys are out there you just have to be patient and keep looking. We have a Detroit Series 60, 13-speed manual, twin screw. I've had a few friends have troubles with their automatics but it seems like it's always electrical related issues.
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Old 11-02-2016, 04:50 PM   #19
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Check the front end and tire specs along with the actual front axle weight before you buy anything. Some of these coaches are heavy on the front. Renegade started to change over their specs a few years ago from 12K to 18K. We run 315 steer tires up front and a lot of the newer coaches do the same.

Like some of the guys said, good buys are out there you just have to be patient and keep looking. We have a Detroit Series 60, 13-speed manual, twin screw. I've had a few friends have troubles with their automatics but it seems like it's always electrical related issues.
Not sure how I would identify the front heavy coachs as those specs are not typically listed and I would not know good from bad nor the appropriate questions to ask.

Is your 13spd manual totally manual or do you use the clutch at start up and then it is auto? I would not mind cranking a shifter as all my cars are manuals and I prefer manuals if given a choice. When I say I know almost nothing about the big trucks it is true. Whole new world to me but one I must learn because there is no turning back now.

Keep the comments coming. I am learning very quickly.
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Old 11-02-2016, 05:08 PM   #20
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Not sure how I would identify the front heavy coachs as those specs are not typically listed and I would not know good from bad nor the appropriate questions to ask.

Is your 13spd manual totally manual or do you use the clutch at start up and then it is auto? I would not mind cranking a shifter as all my cars are manuals and I prefer manuals if given a choice. When I say I know almost nothing about the big trucks it is true. Whole new world to me but one I must learn because there is no turning back now.

Keep the comments coming. I am learning very quickly.
I'd just keep the front axle stuff in mind. We had 11R x 24.5 tires on the front of our truck when we bought it. They're a 7K tire but they were pretty squatty and the steering was really tough when stopped. I'd just consider what front tires are there and maybe take it across a scale if you can. Our local truck stop let me do ours for free with a verbal weight. They're probably not all like this so don't let me scare you. Also consider where the fuel tanks are and what the effects are when they're full. I true 18K set-up has big stuff, big steering rods, U-bolts, hubs, 9K wheels and sometimes dual steering (box on one side with a ram on the other side).

Yes, we have a manual and really only use the clutch to get going. It's a full manual though so we're shifting gears w/o the clutch after that or double clutching. It's fun and easy to drive once you figure it out and I'm still learning. Our's is an Eaton Road Ranger 13-speed and it's super versatile when rolling down the road.

Double frames is another item. I'm not convinced they all need double frames but some have them and some don't. The frames are nested one inside of another if they have it. Most of the coach builders stack some pretty big boxed frames between the coach box and the truck frame so I'm not really sure it necessary but having a double frame is not really a bad thing.
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