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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We ordered our first travel trailer on Valentine's Day. We ordered a 28RLS. We have two older kids who will likely not travel with us too much. My son is 20 in college and my daughter is 16 and not into camping. We loved the layout for space, windows, and all around comfort. We should get delivery by April 1.

We will be pulling our "Vacation Home" behind our 96 Dodge Ram conversion van with a 5.2 engine. The van is pretty heavy with the conversion. We installed a Reese WD hitch with 1200# bars and a Reese friction sway control and a prodigy brake control.

The trailer has a sticker weight of 5200# dry with all of the options. We will be close to both the GVWR of the van and the GCWR for the van with the van and trailer loaded.

Does anyone have any experience in pulling the 28RLS or something of similar weight with a large conversion van? We do know that we might have difficulty climbing any mountain passes with this setup. However, we are not in the position to get a new tow vehicle at this time. We might consider one in a year or two.

Any input or advice for new RV'rs would be welcome. This includes first supply lists and suggested trips. We are on the East coast and will probably travel North and South in the beginning.

Of interest is recommendations on leveling blocks, chocks, and mobile internet connections.

Look forward to your replies. Thanks.
 

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Congratulations and welcome to the fourm
.

As long as you are under gvw and gcw, take it easy and you should be just fine. You might want to think about adding a larger transmission cooler and switching to synthetic atf. I did on our truck and it makes a difference, the synthetic atf runs cooler than regular atf.

As far as first trips, we took short weekend trips to get started, but don't be afraid to venture out, we have been to Williamsburg VA. Bar Harbor ME., Sturbridge Village MA, Cape May NJ and lots of weekend trips to Pa. We'll be heading for the Outer Banks in April. We never travelled so much until we bought our trailer. Just hit the road and and head for what you enjoy, that's the great thing about travelling by rv, you can head anywhere you want and have your vacation home with you.

As far as chocks, I use nylon ones that I bought at the rv dealer.

I use 3/4 inch plywood and 2x6's as leveling blocks, I cut them 14 inches long and cut a 45 degree angle on one end. I have them screwed together in thicknesses of 3/4 inch, 1 1/2 inch, 2 1/4 inch and 3 inches. 14 inches long is just the right length to fit between the two wheels. I put one behind each wheel and back up onto them while my wife guides me. I then use the chocks on the wheels that are still on the ground to keep the trailer from rolling anywhere.

Good luck and enjoy

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Camping. I have been viewing this forum for a while but have never jumped in. There is a lot of good information from the members and everyone is free to pass on their knowledge and experience.

We are adding a transmission cooler before we pick up the trailer. We know that this is a must. I had not heard about the synthetic transmission fluid. I will be sure to ask our mechanic about that.

We hope to get our trailer by or before April 1. After pulling it around locally and trying it out in the driveway for several days, we would like to head down toward Florida the week after Easter. My wife's brother's in-laws have a place at Imperial Bonita Estates. We might try to make it there for a few days.

On the leveling blocks, as we are trying to stay light on weight, we were considering the plastic leveling blocks like Lynx. Does anyone have experience with these, good or bad?

As for chocks, we have read a lot of postings on the use of the "between-the-wheel-clamping" chocks over on the Trailer Life forums. Does anyone have any experience with these, good or bad?

Does anyone have suggestions of things to look for and ask about during the pre-delivery inspection for our '04 28RLS? We already know that the oven will be missing until they become available again and the dealer will then install it.

Lastly, what are the members' experiences with internet access while on the road. I am self-employed and need to keep in touch with my customers while I'm away. I have a new laptop and am looking for a reasonable, yet available and reliable internet connection. I have read that the Verizon 555 card and the $79.99/month plan is about the best. Your thoughts on this would be appreciated.

I know this is a lot in one post. However, I have a lot to learn and am really looking forward to our new experiences to come. Thanks.
 

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Hello and welcome to OUTBACKERS!

I hope you enjoy your trailer as much as we do.

Like Mike, we use 2x6's cut down to fit between the wheels in different thicknesses, and use the plastic chocks. I use small chunks of plywood under the jack and stabilizers.

There are a couple pre delivery threads going on the forum, and there is a lot of good info there. Check them out before you go, and you'll be fine.
 

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Hi MH,
WE use the linx blocks, picked them up at walmart(30+) they seem to always have them in stock. We bought two set I don't always need them but it is nice to have them when we do need them. For chocks I got the cheapey triangle type they seem to lock in good with the lego's. I also carry a 4x12x12 wood block for the tounge jack makes it easer and more stable when disconnectting.good luck with your new TT and one last thing get your backing up directions worked out with your wife ahead of time will save a lot of frustration.
 

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Some good advice and good to see you'r taking the right steps (trans cooler), might want to look at an oil cooler too.

I have a full set of Lynx Levelers and their Chock n Block, I also take along a 4' 2x8 as well in the back of the truck to be safe.
 

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I have a question along this line. My husband and I have a 1995 Tahoe w/ tow package and have towed a pop-up, and trailmanor with it and had no problems. My question is will we have problems with either a 25fb-s or 28rl-s. These are the two models we have narrowed down to. Any advice?

Thanks,
Steve and Kim
Still in research mode
1995 Tahoe w/ tow package
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
What are the ratings on your Tahoe as for the GCWR and maximum trailer weight? These will determine the Tahoe's capabilities. Also, the wheelbase of the Tahoe is shorter than some others like the Suburban or some pickups. All these factors need to be considered. **** luck.
 

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I wouldn't even consider towing a 29.5 ft trailer (28 RLS) with my Tahoe. I have no doubt it would do the job, the question is how safe? Too much trailer for the short wheelbase of the truck, I think. My 25 RSS is plenty long enough for me.

Just my opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·

Well, we stumbled upon a 2001 Suburban 2500 LT with the 8.1L V8 and 44000 miles on a Pontiac dealer's lot only a 1/2 mile from our home. We took it for a test drive and liked it. They gave it to us to drive overnight to see if the whole family liked it.

Needless to say, what's not to like. I went back on Saturday and negotiated a sale. Now we don't have to sweat pulling our 28RLS with our 96 Dodge Ram Conversion Van which would have been at or above all of the weight ratings. With this Suburban, we almost won't know the trailer is back there.

Thanks again for all of the replies and input. It helped us make our decision on what we wanted and luck helped us find the vehicle that we wanted.

Thanks again to all. action sunny
 

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Nice! Good luck and happy camping


Mike
 
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