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1957 - 1960 F100 & Larger F-Series Trucks Discuss the Box Style Ford Trucks

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Old 01-28-2013, 02:48 PM
dbq1928 dbq1928 is offline
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Engine/tranny combinations for towing

I have been lightly browsing the web for people towing with their f100's and I am not coming up with much. I have a 1959 f100 that has a 223 in it with its original 3 on the column (no OD). I am cruising on the highway averaging 50 mph(broken speedo) about 200 miles a week. I am currently looking at hauling a 19 ft camper that should weigh somewhere around 2000 lbs. My 223 still has plenty of life and my tranny isn’t too tired but I have been reading up a lot about swapping it out for a World Class T5.

Will I be able to tow 2000 lbs with my stock 223 and 3 on the column or should I look at a T5 swap? Is a 300 needed to pull this much weight?

Any input would be greatly appreciated, thanks!
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Old 01-29-2013, 06:23 AM
3414 3414 is offline
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It all depends on your driving style, and how fast you want to get to the top of the hill.

Back in the 60s and early 70s a friend pulled a two axle Monitor travel trailer all over the country with a 55 or 56 F100. Totaly stock with many miles on it. It had a 3 speed. In the 80s someone else I know regularly pulled trailers upto 10,000 lbs with a 77 F150, 300 six, 3 speed automatic hauling grain and feed.

Both did it at a steady pace, taking things as the truck would.

Your truck will pull a 2000 lb travel trailer if both are set up properly. Good trailer brakes on the trailer, possibly a weight distributing hitch (not usually necessary, but it may make things handle better). Go over the brakes, shocks and springs to get all in tip top condition. You will not be the fastest on the road, but you will get where you are going and have a reasonable cruising speed. These trucks were built to move a load, and in good condition the engine, clutch, transmission, cooling system, brakes, and axles will be up to the job. The biggest thing is that your driving style and expectations must match the performance of the vehicle.
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Old 01-29-2013, 07:59 AM
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hiball3985 hiball3985 is offline
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Some additional information would be helpful. What type of terrain are you planning on traveling? I use to pull a small tent trailer, maybe 1000lbs + another ???lbs of stuff the wife and kids would fill it with fairly easily on flat ground. I also pulled a 4 axle UHAUL full of junk, don't know the weight. But on long up hill grades and higher altitudes in the mountains you can't expect that much and plan on spending a lot of time going slower in lower gears. A 5 speed would give a little more choices of ratios, a 300 will give you more ponies and torque. So depending on how often you plan on hauling it and can justify the $$$ to do it.

As already mentioned BRAKES are your number one concern.
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1960 F100 Panel 223 3 spd overdrive

1966 F250 390 4 spd

1957 Ranchero 292 3 spd
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Old 01-29-2013, 10:55 AM
willowbilly3 willowbilly3 is offline
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I guess the easiest thing is to just hook to the trailer and see what happens. My 58 223 with 4 speed has a 3.89 gear and I would think that would roll a small travel trailer at 55 in the flatlands but I sure wouldn't want to head over the continental divide with it.
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Old 01-31-2013, 06:53 AM
3414 3414 is offline
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Another thing to consider. Will you be on the interstates or state routes? With your truck as it is it would be fine on state routes most anywhere, but on interstates, particularly in hilly terrain, you might be well below the speed of most traffic. An example is in Pennsylvania. I would avoid the Turnpike, but PA 31 and US 30 east of Bedford are very scenic and more suited to the pace your truck would be a "comfortable" drive with. A T5 would give you 2 more gears and better splits, but might not get you higher speeds in the hills, because you would never use 5th gear towing. You have about 130 hp to work with, and the wind drag of the travel trailer will hold your speed down more than the weight at anything above about 35 mph. Pick the right route, and it could be an enjoyable drive.
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Old 01-31-2013, 06:53 AM
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