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Old 02-12-2005, 07:00 AM   #1
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Hello,

Just found this forum a couple of weeks ago and I'm still learning but I'm definitely interested in a truck conversion.

I realize the final tow rating and capabilities of truck depend on many variables: engine, axles, tires, weight of the conversion, etc.

What I'm looking for is a rough estimate to apply so I can narrow my search for a truck.

I consider the ability to maintain reasonable speed (55mph) up the grades found in southern California, Nevada, and Arizona almost a necessity. So it would be nice for a truck to have the torque, gearing, horsepower, and cooling necessary to accomplish this. My normal load will be a 13-15 thousand pound trailer with my max being 20k pounds.

I see quite a few conversions with engines in the 300 hp 800 torque range. What is a good estimate of their maximum towing capability?

For the trucks with 400 or more hp, how much can they reliably tow?

This forum has been a great source of information so far, if anyone has other sites or sources of information I would be interested in those as well.

Thanks,
Matt
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Old 02-12-2005, 06:56 PM   #2
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When you get into this class of vehicle, you'll hit the LEGAL max before the physical limitations of the truck are reached. So check your local laws to know what you can do.
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Old 02-12-2005, 09:14 PM   #3
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.....20,000# aint nothin' for a class 8 but in a MTD level truck you will be close to max speed/grunt on hills but the speed flat out will be about 78mph max. I have a Cheve 6500 roll-off wrecker with a Catapillar 3126e X 6 speedX 3.70 set for 210hp at 520# it will pull it's 16,000 empty wt. very easy but load it with a car on the deck and another on the stinger-or maybe a boat or TT.....and we get real winded on the hills.....then again if I set it up to 330 hp at 860# I will do hills at 55mph+ but I loose MPG and my warranty goes up in smoke.....right now it is 8 years on the engine alone.....so everything is a trade off....make your choices wisely-there is no real right and wrong it is a matter of trade-offs....geof kaye
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Old 02-14-2005, 04:52 AM   #4
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Gary Atsma:
When you get into this class of vehicle, you'll hit the LEGAL max before the physical limitations of the truck are reached. So check your local laws to know what you can do. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Ok, thanks.

I guess you're saying a 20,000 lb trailer is no sweat (even up hills) for something in the 300hp 800 torque range.

Matt
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Old 02-14-2005, 05:24 AM   #5
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Matt -

Since we are in the motorhome forum I am assuming your looking at a motorhome conversion pulling a 20,000 lb trailer.

I would think you would be disappointed with the performance of say a M2-106 with a 300 hp / 860 torque setup 28' motorhome weighting in at say 27,000 lbs and that 20,000 lb tag trailer in the mountains.

I'll have a much better idea of how the M2 w/ MBE 926 motor performs in April.
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Old 02-14-2005, 04:39 PM   #6
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Oops- I over-generalized. I was thinking you had Class 8 trucks in mind, most of which have over 1100# of torque, which would perform as I said. 800#, as Warpath says, would be another story. 20,000 would make that engine work a little harder than you might be comfortable with.
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Old 02-14-2005, 10:45 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by warpath:
Matt -

Since we are in the motorhome forum I am assuming your looking at a motorhome conversion pulling a 20,000 lb trailer.

I would think you would be disappointed with the performance of say a M2-106 with a 300 hp / 860 torque setup 28' motorhome weighting in at say 27,000 lbs and that 20,000 lb tag trailer in the mountains.

I'll have a much better idea of how the M2 w/ MBE 926 motor performs in April.
Thanks,

I wouldn't mind downshifting and slowing down to 45. Its that I want to avoid all the other problems (overheating, excessive wear and tear, etc) that come from asking too much from an engine.
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Old 02-15-2005, 09:22 PM   #8
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.....you can never have too much Hp or Grunt.....'cuz you can always let off and slow down.....I just can't seem to master that concept too well....must be geneticly programed right foot on the loud pedal.....Oh well! -next life!....geof kaye
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Old 02-25-2005, 04:50 AM   #9
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Matt, you won't have a problem towing your trailer with the 300HP Cat, you just may be unhappy later while you are slowing down up the hills. Also remember the resale is better on motorhomes with big horsepower (1 million mile) when compared to the 300HP Cat (400-500,000 mile) engines. You can't go wrong with the big power!

Bob
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