legacy_etu

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Woah, someone who took their trailer on a trip and came equipped to deal with trailer issues... impossible!! Nice trailer BTW. Quick suggestion to anyone towing long legs: bring a non contact infrared thermometer to check wheel bearing temps. when you stop. Great quick way to make sure a bearing isn't about to go on you.

That seems like pretty good mileage given the load. Your Glad. looks great between the color, tent setup, and and wheels. I actually just installed the same ones on my JK. Loving them so far.

 

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Woah, someone who took their trailer on a trip and came equipped to deal with trailer issues... impossible!! ( :CWL: :CWL: :CWL: )

That seems like pretty good mileage given the load.
Yes, that is the same mileage I got from my Overland with my heavier (about 450 lbs with stuff) travel trailer.

I still think that shifting manually is the way to go to keep your fuel economy in that 13+ mpg range because then you are not running above 2,500 rpm that often. 7th around 1,900-2,000 rpms works fine. Even unloaded, in 8th gear I am around 1,800-1,900 rpms and get around 24.5 mpg straight highway and 19.5 running around. Not too shabby for driving something with the aerodynamics of a brick :like::like::like: My wife's 2019 GC Ltd. gets about 1 mpg more straight highway so...aerodynamics.
 

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^^ well I was thinking about the mileage I used to get towing my 28' sailboat (5.5K lbs) with my V8 Explorer. I got 10 - 11 MPG with that rig; but to be, fair there was a lot of windage/surface area with that boat.
 

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Yes, that is the same mileage I got from my Overland with my heavier (about 450 lbs with stuff) travel trailer.

I still think that shifting manually is the way to go to keep your fuel economy in that 13+ mpg range because then you are not running above 2,500 rpm that often. 7th around 1,900-2,000 rpms works fine. Even unloaded, in 8th gear I am around 1,800-1,900 rpms and get around 24.5 mpg straight highway and 19.5 running around. Not too shabby for driving something with the aerodynamics of a brick :like::like::like: My wife's 2019 GC Ltd. gets about 1 mpg more straight highway so...aerodynamics.
Can you go into more detail about shifting manual with the automatic ? I tried it the last time I was towing and if I kept it in a higher gear manually it would just slow down and lose speed.
 
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Can you go into more detail about shifting manual with the automatic ? I tried it the last time I was towing and if I kept it in a higher gear manually it would just slow down and lose speed.
That's what I noted when testing it before the trip. Trying to keep it under 3,000 rpm on our hills - all it did was slow down and drop mpg. The cruise literally got me the best mileage with the transmission doing the shifting - AFTER it appeared to learn.

If I didn't let it downshift, it struggled and didn't accelerate up the hills either. There was no way to let it stay under 3,000 rpm on the ramps and hills. But then again, there's nothing level on that trip, not anything at all, until you cross the Mississippi into Il. It's 100% hills here. Trucks constantly downshift and upshift.
 
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2TH MVR

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Too funny. I used to drive an AMC Spirit in highschool. Jacked it up with rear shackles. Traction bars. Wide rear tires. Skinny fronts. 258ci 6 cylinder was strong. What memories.
 
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Too funny. I used to drive an AMC Spirit in highschool. Jacked it up with rear shackles. Traction bars. Wide rear tires. Skinny fronts. 258ci 6 cylinder was strong. What memories.
The SX4 is mostly based off the Spirit platform. The fenders are different (wider openings because of the steering knuckles and CV joints up front) and the floor pan is different for the transfer case clearance. Otherwise a lot of parts interchange. Rear differential on the SX4 is mounted under the leaf springs where on the Spirit it sits on the leaf springs.

Since my SX4 sits so high (because it's 4 wheel drive) it sits high on the trailer, and stands up higher than the roof of the Gladiator.

Here's a fast Spirit -

20210911_153811_HDR.jpg
 

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First time towing with the JT and it was hauling my 2015 Rubicon JK straight off the boat from Europe. I will say the 9mpg average wasn't great, but the JT did its job well. Smooth, good braking and plenty of highway power. I am more impressed with this Jeep every time I drive it. Bittersweet ending to the JK at the end of the day delivering the trade in, but I'm sure it turned some heads having a Rubi tow a Rubi :)

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I don't understand the increased octane for the fuel. The engine is designed around 87 fuel. What is the benefit of higher? The engine does not have a compression ratio or detonation risk to merit higher octane. Even with 10% ethanol, the energy/kg fuel is almost the same.
 

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Hopefully no one will jump in with their perennial "the diesel would do better" stuff - please no.
This is about my real-world experience finally towing a real load over a distance and some long hills (I80 between Des Moines and the Mississippi and back again.

Trailer -with spare tire, straps, tool box and some simple emergency supplies (for in case I lose a bearing, etc.) comes in at 1600.

My car - I thought it was 3200. I did more research and found that to be the base model 4 cyl car. Mine is a 6, loaded Sport, and comes in closer to 3276 with the I6 and T5, Sport spoiler, etc. I'll call it 3300 since I've learned what people report an SX4 as weighing is incorrectly based off the base model 4 cyl.

That means 1600 plus 3300 for a total of 4900 pounds tow load.

I weighed the tongue with the trailer setting level like it would when connected and got a tongue weight of 520 pounds.

Aluma says their ALL aluminum trailer should have a tongue weight of 10 to 12% That means mine should be running between 490 and 588. I'm running just shy of 11% tongue weight.

I have the Overland. Those are geared at 3.73:1 and it has the 8 speed automatic. They are rated to tow 6,000 pounds and the payload on mine is something around 1060 give or take.
So my tongue weight took about half of my payload. That means I'm down to about 540. Take away for the bumper and winch I put on - I'll call it 150 total to cover the added equipment on my truck. I still have roughly 400 left.

Not a biggy - I travel light - sleeping bag, tent, cooler, all of my gear isn't more than about 100 pounds.

I was running some experiments with my truck just for kicks. It runs GREAT, no pinging at all, no rough idle, it simply runs. Unloaded I think it hunts too much and towing my trailer empty was a disaster a year ago. I was concerned. It was horrible, 11 mpg, it sucked pulling just 1600 pounds.
My tires are General A/TX about the same diameter as the stock Dueller tires, but are obviously wider and an A/T tread and not H/T tread. I aired them up for the load.

I wanted to play around with it and ran some 89 octane. After most of the tank had run through I noticed the engine sound was different - intake area and exhaust all sounded different. Makes sense if the valve lift and timing also changed. I usually run the really cheap stuff in my truck, 87, not usually "top tier", just whatever I can get.

I figured for the trip and towing I'd go into town and find some top tier gas. I went to a Quiktrip and filled it with their 91 10%.

The first thing I noticed on the trip over was that it really ran the low gears and RPM was way up in the 4,xxx range a few times. As the trip progresses I saw that change a bit and is seldom went over about 3200-3300 rpm (I tried to run 65).

I seldom saw 8th gear except on down hill areas. It spent most of the time in 7th. 5th and 6th were common on hills but it really didn't hammer the engine as much as the LS in my Silverado did. Shifting smoothed out and it got into a routine. I'd say most of the trip was in the 2200-2300 rpm range or so. Again, tried to stick to 65 mph.

I stopped a couple of times just to check the tires and everything - they weren't hot, barely warm to the touch. If I had to guess, I'd say maybe 100 degrees or so??

I made it all the way with a bit over 100 miles left on the tank. The truck showed 13.8 mpg average.
There was a shell station not far from the events, so on the way back I stopped there and filled up with their 91.

The FilIUp app on my phone said I did 13.94 mpg average but I may not have pulled the trigger the same so perhaps I could have gotten a couple of tenths more in it (gas was expensive in IL)
In other words, looks like I really did get a good 13.8 mpg running 65 on I80 with the hills and all hauling 5900 pounds behind me.

Coming back the mpg was about 13.7 average - maybe the wind was different, who knows. It was warmer outside - about 90 degrees part of the way back where on the way over was very early AM and it was COOL. So the difference could be ambient air temp. Difference was likely 20 degrees.

It seemed to have plenty of power. I never felt it suffered for power. It didn't hunt or shift any more often or any worse than my Silverado - perhaps a bit less. It was in the 2,xxx rpm area a lot and to me that's fine. It's like it learned on the trip over.

In short, it had the power to pull, it didn't hunt badly, yes - I only saw 8th gear maybe a handful of times but who cares - it got better mpg than my Silverado. I'd have been happy if all it did was the same or matched that Chevy towing. Not the totally planted feeling a slightly wider or heavier truck would have but honestly, I'm not sure 4.10 gears would have made any real difference. The automatic compensated and kept the engine where it was needing to be. Taking off, yes, it would have mattered. I was happy with how the transmission acted after it had pulled a while. I was glad to see it didn't push the RPM up too often - it did get up to about 5,000 rpm once as I was trying to get back on I80 on a ramp that was short and up a hill (tons of truck traffic). Otherwise it was mostly 22-2300 and 32-3300 rpm. I suspect the 8 speed vs. my Chevy's 6 speed made the difference there.

First thing my wife asked when I got back in last night- "how did it tow"? I said fine. She said "so getting the Overland wasn't a bad thing after-all then, was it". Nope.

Bigger tires may have not been a good thing - that's one reason I bought these A/T tires in the same diameter - to keep the final RPM to road speed ratio the same (it was rated with the 32.2" tires to tow 6,000 - it was figured with this RPM to road speed ratio so I wanted to stick with that)

This is direct from the Iowa DOT - it doesn't take into account the grades on the Iowa side of the river or some others in that area:

The steepest grade was located between Jasper County Road F-48 (Baxter exit) and Newton. There is 1800’ of tangent grade at 3.9946%(as built). The next steepest grade is near the rest areas near Grinnell at 3.4%. There are several other widely scattered locations of 3% grade.


I measured several times, it always settled to 520 pounds tongue weight.

20210909_134320.jpg


I stopped at a rest stop to stretch my legs (LOVE THE Hooke Road DEAD PEDAL!) and to check the looks of the tires, feel the sidewalls, trailer bearing area, car straps, etc. - all was fine.

20210910_063711_HDR.jpg


Oh, mine wasn't the only Gladiator there! They hauled that Gremlin over from a town only 30 minutes south of us.

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I'm glad I'm only 5'8" A taller person would have had their feet sticking out over the tail gate but it worked out ok for me. I took a ratchet and TORX bit to remove the tonneau cover before putting the tent up. Made a huge difference and those covers come off in under 5 minutes - less if you hurry.

20210910_191133_HDR.jpg


And back home again, ready to unload -

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Parking my trailer in a tight spot without running into my neighbors stuff or over the wall is a piece of cake with a JT and a front receiver................

20210912_111743_HDR.jpg

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Any Jeep owners with power needs can always consider something like this, I guess........... you may end up having to cut the hood, though. There's a clearance issue.

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Would you recommend the tent still? I'm thinking of getting one, I'm the same height as you so I don't think it'd be a problem

Also, I hate to say it, as I usually run the cheapest 87 I can find too, but I've tried a couple tanks with 89 or 91 and the engine really does feel better
 


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Can you go into more detail about shifting manual with the automatic ? I tried it the last time I was towing and if I kept it in a higher gear manually it would just slow down and lose speed.
When I shift manually, I do not go much above 2,500 rpm. When I hit that mark, it's the next gear up and, the truck can get to merging speed easily. When I get to 7th, I have found that the truck can maintain 60-65 mph easily at around 1,900-2,000 rpm. If it's flat or a slight downgrade, then I can go to 8th. When going up a grade, when my speed (in 7th) drops below 58 mph, then I bump it back to 6th (again around 2,500 rpm) and can actually get back up to between 60-65 mph. Once that is achieved, back to 7th and repeat as necessary until the hill is crested, then it's generally 7th. This is total interstate by the way. Haven't really tried more rural types except for getting to the occasional campground but by then, speeds are in the 40s to 50s and the shifting is different but, can still maintain that 2,500-3,000 rpm range.
 
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Would you recommend the tent still? I'm thinking of getting one, I'm the same height as you so I don't think it'd be a problem

Also, I hate to say it, as I usually run the cheapest 87 I can find too, but I've tried a couple tanks with 89 or 91 and the engine really does feel better
Yes. I'm no expert at tents, camping, etc. - I grab and go and try to figure it out later. I suspect what I experienced with the inside of the door being wet was indeed condensation as I had things closed up a bit much. I'll learn.
I think if I had a slightly larger air mattress I could have gone a bit diagonally if need be but again, my stuff is old (my sleeping bag dates to about 1979).
I actually slept well. The nice thing is you can tweak how the truck sits to sleep in a level place - and not have to try to find level non-rough ground for a ground tent. I have one, but I think this is actually as easy or easier to set up than my 2 person (HAHAHA, yeah, right) tent I used in the past.
I laid a tarp in the bed of the truck, a couple old thick blankets, my air mattress, and sleeping bag. It worked fine.
The trick to this truck tent is like someone said - don't over-tighten the straps! leave them loose, put in the poles, etc. and snug the straps as needed. I had mine set up in 5 to 10 minutes.
The tail lights sticking out on those with the BSM make the straps not being too tight even more important. The Jeep fenders stick out so that's another trick area, but mine sealed fine - NO bugs. I figured if there had been gaps that violate or yellow painters tape might have taken care of that but I never needed or used it. I put a couple of things in the inside hanging pouches and that helped pull the centers of the sides inward to seal better, too (my phone and a couple of other things in those helped)
Yeah, I'd do it again.
 
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When I shift manually, I do not go much above 2,500 rpm. When I hit that mark, it's the next gear up and, the truck can get to merging speed easily. When I get to 7th, I have found that the truck can maintain 60-65 mph easily at around 1,900-2,000 rpm. If it's flat or a slight downgrade, then I can go to 8th. When going up a grade, when my speed (in 7th) drops below 58 mph, then I bump it back to 6th (again around 2,500 rpm) and can actually get back up to between 60-65 mph. Once that is achieved, back to 7th and repeat as necessary until the hill is crested, then it's generally 7th. This is total interstate by the way. Haven't really tried more rural types except for getting to the occasional campground but by then, speeds are in the 40s to 50s and the shifting is different but, can still maintain that 2,500-3,000 rpm range.
You'd never maintain speeds on I80 that way. Even my LS V8 couldn't.
It took 6th for the JT to maintain speed on our hills. You also don't drop down to 58 here like you did there. You'll have traffic so backed up..........and people pissed. You share the road with hundreds of 18 wheelers that struggle on the hills. Slow down below 60 and you have them so close you could jump bumper to bumper.
Anything under 2,000 was in the "lugging" range.
I was pretty happy when mine was running about 2200 RPM or so.
 

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When I shift manually, I do not go much above 2,500 rpm. When I hit that mark, it's the next gear up and, the truck can get to merging speed easily. When I get to 7th, I have found that the truck can maintain 60-65 mph easily at around 1,900-2,000 rpm. If it's flat or a slight downgrade, then I can go to 8th. When going up a grade, when my speed (in 7th) drops below 58 mph, then I bump it back to 6th (again around 2,500 rpm) and can actually get back up to between 60-65 mph. Once that is achieved, back to 7th and repeat as necessary until the hill is crested, then it's generally 7th. This is total interstate by the way. Haven't really tried more rural types except for getting to the occasional campground but by then, speeds are in the 40s to 50s and the shifting is different but, can still maintain that 2,500-3,000 rpm range.
Thanks for the reply, I think where I drive it is too hilly, I am on the highway running around 70mph, from MA to ME, constant up and down hills, with the cruise it will range from 5th to 8th depending on terrain, mileage is around 13.5 towing 3500lbs, it is a boat without much of a profile.
 
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ShadowsPapa

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Thanks for the reply, I think where I drive it is too hilly, I am on the highway running around 70mph, from MA to ME, constant up and down hills, with the cruise it will range from 5th to 8th depending on terrain, mileage is around 13.5 towing 3500lbs, it is a boat without much of a profile.
Mine wound up tight or didn't do enough at first couple of miles........ then it's like it learned or something. OR - maybe it was just ME, dunno, but once I got going a ways, it pretty much kept things under control. And I figured hauling a 4900 pound load in our hills, and the fact my car sticks up a bit above the truck when all loaded up on the trailer (which actually sits pretty low since there are no springs to deal with forcing it to sit higher) and after seeing what others reported at times - 12 or 11 or worse, I was actually very happy with my 13.8 and 13.7 averages.

Even the FillUp app agreed with my truck's estimate. It's a truck, I was towing, the engine is much smaller than the LS in my Chevy was........
My wife is happy that I'm happy with the truck towing. I could tell she was "anxious" hearing of my concerns and how it sucked the first time out - empty. Whatever happened, the PCM flash, the added miles, the heavier load forcing it into thinking - aha, we have a TRAILER back there, who knows, but it matured and got smarter (and perhaps I did as well - hope so)

I really can't see how manually shifting the whole way would have gained me anything over 13.8 I was doing.

Fun facts -
The world's largest truck stop is on the stretch of I80 I drove. On average, the truck stop has served more than 1.4 million customers per year since it opened in 1965. Four-hundred and fifty employees staff the megaplex.

Currently as I-80 crosses the state, it carries vehicle volumes ranging from 20,000 to 35,000 vehicles per day with heavy truck/freight traffic making up anywhere from 15 to 30 percent of the mix. Personally, on my trip, I'd say the commercial traffic was closer to 40% at times. Thankfully the Iowa/Iowa State game was not in Iowa City Saturday! I'd have been SCREWED. GRIDLOCK.

 

 
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