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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm somewhat of an RV Newbie... in 2013, I drove a brand new 32' Class C from Fort Wayne,Indiana, to Southern Arizona, to Las Vegas... I've tent camped in Reenactment Events and Scout Jamborees for years... I also currently own a 6x8 enclosed cargo trailer. So... I know just enough to get myself into all kinds of trouble.

I'm thinking of buying a 2002 25RSS Outback Travel Trailer - I'm at the point where tent camping is just beyond my limits.

I have very little idea what I'm about to do.

Worse, my tow vehicle is a low mileage 2007 Ford Explorer XLT... it's a V6, but it does have the factory upgrade tow package. Am I going to kill my beloved Explorer trying to tow this? That's Question 1.

Question 2: what is this brake system business... I've a very limited idea... but not sure what I need and what I don't know quite how that whole thing works.

Question 3: Is my choice of trailer a good choice - quality wise? I've heard good things about this model, but there is a lot in this forum regarding leaks. :(

Question 4: when shopping trailers - the 25RSS or any others - what should I look for as danger signs? I've bumped around in this forum and found many interesting tips, but I'd like to know more and what are the most important boxes I should check... or are there inspection folks I can ask to check it out for me?

I know... it's a lot to ask in my first post, but I've saved up for this trailer, decided this model checks all my 'wants'... I'm just afraid I'm wanting too much for what I can have.

Thanks in advance.

Befuddled in Florida,

LL
 

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Hi:

I'll try to answer a few of your questions.

1. I believe that this trailer will be way too much for your Explorer. I had an Explorer Sport Trac with my previous trailer (that weighed in at 3800lb ready for camping), and it was all I would want to pull with that. The Sport Trac had a 5000lb tow rating. The trailer tow package on these vehicles isn't as good as you might think.

The 2002 25RSS probably weighs in at around 5300lb dry(meaning nothing but trailer...no 'stuff ' inside).

http://www.keystonerv.com/previous-years?brand=Outback&year=2002

The 2007 Explorer had a max tow rating of around 7300lb, if properly equipped.

http://www.fleet.ford.com/resources/ford/general/pdf/towingguides/07RVTTguideApr08.pdf

2. You will need a brake controller and the proper wiring for the brakes on the trailer. See your local RV dealer for more info on this, as it's a little too much to type about.

3. A friend has one of that age and likes it.

4. Trouble spot... Delamination of anything on the outside. It looks like the outside panels have big bubbles in them. Also, any water spots inside that might hide water damage from a leaky roof, and possible rot in the sidewalls. Also, any discolored floor tiles, or soft spots in the floor. Lots of other things too, but water damage is the major problem.

Good luck.

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Chris, thanks for the input.

I think the 2002 24RSS weighs 4424, (dry weight- but then there is the tongue weight thing I don't get), and I'd be traveling dry I would think.

I have the V6 2007 Explorer, and I think it's rated to tow 5100.

I've towed 4000/4500 in the West Virginia and Western Pennsylvania area. My Explorer was not super thrilled hailing up the mountains, but held steady speed of at least 45mph in most cases. It was 2008 and my TV was younger then.

I'm thinking I'm pretty much pushing it.

Just got news that the camper I was looking at sold before I could make up my mind. Bummer.

LL
 

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Too bad it sold, but maybe for the best this time.

Just remember that dry weight is the weight of the trailer only, sometimes without the weight of the awning, AC and propane tanks added in, just to name some stuff. Then add in your things like food, bedding and clothes, pot and pans, coffee pot(and whatever else you bring), and it can get to 1000 lbs over dry weight real quick. That does not include any water or sewage you might carry in your tanks(at 8.3 lbs/gallon).

My current trailer, weighed last summer on a truck scale, weighed 5300 lbs ready for 2 weeks of camping, with dry tanks. Dry weight of my trailer is 4400 lbs...

I did tow my current trailer with my Explorer Sport Trac, rated at 5000lb capacity a couple of times before I sold the Sport Trac. It was more than my Explorer could handle, and I knew that when I bought the current trailer, so I was looking for a new tow vehicle when I bought the trailer. I now pull it with a F-150 rated at 9200 lbs.

Good luck in your search. BTY: A good time to buy a new one is at the winter RV shows. Prices are, many times, about as low as you will get all year.

And... welcome to this site! There's a lot of good info here, and a friendly bunch of people too. :gathering:
 
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