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  #1  
Old 11-04-2012, 10:31 PM
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Loaded down and headed out!

We finally got everything loaded into the trailer today. With the exception of some odds and ends the trailer is completely loaded as high as the ceiling all the way to the back door. Inside is all the worldly possessions that we are moving from our house here in Amery, WI all the way out to Manchester, CT. The trailer is equipped with tandem 7K axles, and a GVWR of 14,000 lbs.

My main goal today was to get a sense of how heavy the trailer was, how much tongue weight I had, and exactly what the WD kit did to the axle weights. All of them were being compared against this, which is my empty Excursion with a full tank of gas and nothing else.

Click the image to open in full size.

Which matches up quite nicely with the advertised curb weights. So I roll onto the scale without the WD kit installed, and here's what I come up with:

Click the image to open in full size.

So, 6,280 + 2,820 = 9,100 lbs. Subtract the 7,360 lbs and we have a tongue weight of 1,740 lbs! It's not quite that bad, as I probably had another 40 lbs of spring bars and wheel chocks int he back, so I figure I have right around 1,700 lbs of tongue weight. Total trailer weight is right at 14,160(which is fine), but the tongue weight is FAR over my target of 1,000 lbs!

So, to continue, I drove around and hooked up the WD kit and went around for a reweigh:

Click the image to open in full size.

Wow. Those spring bars really do move some weight! 580 lbs went back onto the front axle, and 220 lbs went back to the trailer axles. Now with this my steer axle is close to what it originally was, and the drive axle is still comfortably under it's 7,000 lb GAWR. Subtract the 220 lbs that went back onto the trailer axles and I still have 1,480 lbs on the tongue. Here's a shot at the Walmart parking lot on the way back:

Click the image to open in full size.

I did add increase the rear airbags another 10 PSI to a total of 40 PSI in each bag.

So the load plan is to take all 500 lbs of topsoil that I have sitting outside my shed and find a way to stick it in the very back of the trailer. Don't remember my exact measurements, but this should remove ~250 lbs from the tongue. Still way over where I want to be, but that's the best that it's gonna get.

On the upside I was truly amazed with how well the Excursion did with that much trailer weight. I do have the optional 4.30 gears, but I was still 40% over the maximum rated trailer weight! Had no trouble moving that much weight at all, I just took my time and stayed around the speed limit. Only had to downshift to 2nd gear once, and that was only to see how well I could maintain speed up the steepest hill around here. To my utter surprise I had no trouble holding overdrive along all flat stretches of road and even some slight inclines! Maximum recorded RPM with my ScanGauge was 3,750 RPMs, and I never got under 52 MPH the entire 60 mile trip to and from the truck stop. Trailer sway was more pronounced than it was under similar situations with my Super Duty trucks, but that's to be expected because they weighed over 8,000 lbs and had the longer 156" wheelbase.

My modified transmission cooling setup performed exceptionally well, with the transmission temps climbing quickly into the 180° and never exceeding 190°. The ambient temperatures were in the low 40's, so this shouldn't have been particularly challenging to the gigantic 6.0L cooler that's riding up front, but it's good to see the Derale thermostat is working well.

After putting the final touches on the load tomorrow we head out. Hoping to make it to South Bend, IN assuming all goes well. I'll be cruising at a nice and leisurely 60-62 MPH to be easier on the wallet, and I hope to have a nice, easy ride.
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:39 PM
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looks great! i sure hope after all your work you've put into her in the last month or 2? pays off for you! my thoughts are with you and hope this trip goes safe and sound with no issues!

make sure to update us with MPG numbers and your opinion after the trip.

be safe! if your feeling tired pull over. i have a issue with falling asleep on long drives, hope its not a issue you have.
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:45 PM
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Ya done good, Tom.

Safe travels buddy.

Stewart
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Old 11-04-2012, 11:01 PM
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I like to pretend my little trailer is bigger than it is... But it weighs something like 3800lbs hehe. Its like its not even back there. I stop faster because of the trailer brakes

Someday I will get a proper sized trailer, but for now, borrowing dads will work.
Click the image to open in full size.

I have trailer envy.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:19 AM
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Good luck, Tom. We're all rooting for you. It's been awesome to see you polish away the rough edges of your Ex and reveal the true gem within.

You're gonna have an awesome trip. And we will all be interested to hear how it goes (especially us v10 owners!).

Can't wait to have you up and running again so we can read your posts!

Good luck

Karl
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Old 11-05-2012, 02:33 AM
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Safe travels and thanks for the info!
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Old 11-05-2012, 07:13 AM
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Safe travels!
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A/Ox4 View Post
I like to pretend my little trailer is bigger than it is... But it weighs something like 3800lbs hehe. Its like its not even back there. I stop faster because of the trailer brakes

Someday I will get a proper sized trailer, but for now, borrowing dads will work.

I have trailer envy.
Haha, I feel the same way when towing my boat!

Click the image to open in full size.

3,500 lbs just doesn't seem like enough.

Busy day today, we have to finish up everything and then get on the road. Hoping to leave by 10:00!
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazy001 View Post
I did add increase the rear airbags another 10 PSI to a total of 40 PSI in each bag.

So the load plan is to take all 500 lbs of topsoil that I have sitting outside my shed and find a way to stick it in the very back of the trailer.

On the upside I was truly amazed with how well the Excursion did with that much trailer weight. I do have the optional 4.30 gears...

Maximum recorded RPM with my ScanGauge was 3,750 RPMs

I'll be cruising at a nice and leisurely 60-62 MPH to be easier on the wallet, and I hope to have a nice, easy ride.
I wish more people would go to the same lengths to ensure their trailers/vehicles are properly loaded. Some of the rigs rolling down the road truly amaze me.

I have a question. Is there a reason you don't run more air in the airbags? I know the ride is compromised the more PSI you run, but I think you might be able to run more air pressure in order to transfer some weight back onto the trailer. That would mean you don't have to pay good money to haul 500 pounds of dirt.

I really think that V-nose trailer is going to make a huge difference in how much fuel you (don't) burn. That and the 4.30 gears will make your 60-62 MPH speed the "sweet spot" for power and MPG. I know my V10 and 4.30's really work well together at that speed for MPG.

I really look forward to hearing your numbers when the trip is done.
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Old 11-05-2012, 09:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigPigDaddy View Post
I wish more people would go to the same lengths to ensure their trailers/vehicles are properly loaded. Some of the rigs rolling down the road truly amaze me.
Thanks Jeff. I was a professional truck driver for a few years, and I am still a CDL holder, so weight matters to me. Even though I'm a business major I also have a fair appreciation for physics as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigPigDaddy
I have a question. Is there a reason you don't run more air in the airbags? I know the ride is compromised the more PSI you run, but I think you might be able to run more air pressure in order to transfer some weight back onto the trailer. That would mean you don't have to pay good money to haul 500 pounds of dirt.
My problem is tongue weight, and the trailer is sitting level the way it sits. Every 10 PSI in the bags adds 500 lbs of lifting capability, so with 40 PSI I'm adding 2,000 lbs of lift force to the rear suspension. Stock the truck sits over 3,700 lbs on that axle, so with 40 PSI I'm now effectively sprung for 5,700 lbs with extra capacity to spare with the factory springs, as they can handle another 1,000 lbs even without the bags. My concern is that if I stiffen the rear suspension too much the shock on the hitch will be greater when I hit bumps, and that could work to rip the hitch from the frame.

I guess I should stop procrastinating and get to work...
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Old 11-05-2012, 09:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazy001 View Post
My concern is that if I stiffen the rear suspension too much the shock on the hitch will be greater when I hit bumps, and that could work to rip the hitch from the frame.
That makes sense.

I was thinking you could adjust the hitch height to lower the trailer tongue, then add air pressure to the bags to raise the back of the X until the trailer is again level. Now I understand what you mean.

I have very little experience with air bags (although they are on my wish list) so I am looking at your setup for future reference.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:22 PM
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Let me know if you get to Eastern Pa and decide to stop. I'll meet up with you and buy you a drink! How long do you anticipate the trip taking?
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:14 PM
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Wow, Tom that is a long trip (I just google mapped it).

I had a Navy buddy who was from Bloomer, his dad owned a bar there.

How long are you planning the trip to take?
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Old 11-05-2012, 07:51 PM
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Safe travel Tom! Looks like you got it pretty well balanced.
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:05 PM
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is that a race trailer? if so i'll meet you at the track next summer
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:05 PM
 
 
 
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