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3rd Gen Durango 2011 models

Another Towing Experience with the V6

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Old 05-01-2012, 07:50 PM
Stoopalini Stoopalini is offline
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Default Another Towing Experience with the V6

This past weekend, I towed the GTO out for a NASA road race weekend using a steel trailer I borrowed from a friend.

2200lb trailer
3500lb car
300-400lb in tools
~6000lb total load

Click the image to open in full size.

I loaded the car on backwards to move more of the weight to the rear of the trailer, and headed out.

Total trip was about 120mi each way, and it did great. Averaged 16mpg during the trip, about 65-70mph, at around 2k rpms. Here in TX, there's not much in the way of hills to deal with, so it was a very smooth and worry free trip.

I cranked the boost rating on the Tekonsha brake controller I installed up to level 3, and had no problems slowing or stopping. Honestly, with this controller, the trailer was barely noticeable during braking.

Getting moving wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be either. It was a bit slow, unless I let the motor come up to 5500rpm+, but I let it shift earlier and gave up some acceleration. At one point, I did drag race my buddy in the paddock, with our cars and trailers hooked up LOL! He has a Chevy 2500 crewcab turbo diesel, and was towing about a 8000lb load ... believe it or not, we were neck-and-neck through the empty (yes, everyone had already gone home)paddock, until about 40mph, then had to stop because we ran out of room.

Handling was very nice on the highway. As you can see form the picture, frontal area is fairly minimal on my setup, but it was very windy on the way out there. Every now and then there would be a bit of sway, but nothing to be alarmed about. I never used the manual brake lever on the controller.

I'm still going to get an aluminum trailer for the long term, and will probably get a distribution hitch so I don't have to load vehicles on in reverse, but I'm extremely satisfied with the Durango's capability to tow a load of this weight
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  #2  
Old 05-01-2012, 08:10 PM
switchblade906 switchblade906 is offline
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I wish i had something to tow LOL.....
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Old 05-03-2012, 12:30 AM
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46fever 46fever is offline
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Good report. . .

Must be nice not having hills. : )

Definitely get the weight-distributing hitch, it makes a huge difference . . . put some more weight towards front of trailer and not get any sway.

.
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Old 05-03-2012, 12:50 AM
12hemiawdcitidale 12hemiawdcitidale is offline
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Very nice rides, both of them! I'm new to towing sorry for asking but why would you want the weight towards the back of the trailer, I would figure you would want it closer to the front instead but again, I've never towed anything.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:20 AM
Stoopalini Stoopalini is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 12hemiawdcitidale View Post
...why would you want the weight towards the back of the trailer, I would figure you would want it closer to the front instead...
It's due to tongue weight. General rule of thumb is tongue weight shouldn't exceed 10% of the total towing capacity. The towing capacity of the V6 is 6200lbs, so 620lbs is the max tongue weight.

When I loaded the car on forwards, I imagine the tongue weight was more than this due to the sagging of the rear of the D. When that happens, the front wheels get lighter and sway becomes more of an issue at high speeds.

Here is a pic for comparison. When I took this pic, I was just testing out the setup, so I didn't have any tools or parts in the toolbox. I knew I would be adding an additional ~400lbs, so I decided to load the car on in reverse.

Click the image to open in full size.


Corner weights of the GTO are:

LF: 1061
RF: 1043
LR: 798
RR: 740

So 2104lbs for the front and 1538lbs for the rear and you can see how drastically you can change the tongue weight by flipping it around on the trailer..

A distribution hitch would allow me to reduce tongue weight by adjusting the load and still load the car on forward.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:48 AM
kingofwylietx kingofwylietx is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 12hemiawdcitidale View Post
Very nice rides, both of them! I'm new to towing sorry for asking but why would you want the weight towards the back of the trailer, I would figure you would want it closer to the front instead but again, I've never towed anything.
Also keep in mind that Stoopalini may move his car so that more car weight is towards the back, but there is still more total weight (car & trailer) on the front (tongue).

You have to factor in the trailer. You know you have more gross weight on the front when the tongue has any downward force.....if you have more total weight behind the trailer axle, then the tongue of the trailer would be up in the air. I hope I typed that clearly.

It is recommended that your tongue weight be between 10-15% of the total (gross) weight of the trailer and contents. Per the Durango manual, you should not exceed 620# tongue weight on the V6, and 720# on the V8.

Adjusting the tongue weight and distibuting your load evenly will make the trailer much easier to control. That keeps you safer and also is less tiring on you.
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:01 PM
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ZCR1 ZCR1 is offline
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FYI, if you have the factory load leveling suspension, the rear will always sag at first. Then the shocks pump themselves up to normal ride hight as they cycle. It's not an auto leveling system.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:23 PM
Stoopalini Stoopalini is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZCR1 View Post
FYI, if you have the factory load leveling suspension, the rear will always sag at first. Then the shocks pump themselves up to normal ride hight as they cycle. It's not an auto leveling system.
Correct, but only as much as the tongue weight can handle. When I had the car on forward, I measured the ride height, then drove about 20 miles as a test, and measured again. It only came up 1/4 inch. The pic is mid way during the drive, so about 10 miles.

With the car on backwards, the D sat level after a few miles of driving.
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Old 05-05-2012, 10:01 PM
fuzzyb fuzzyb is offline
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Wow, that's some weight.
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Old 05-05-2012, 10:01 PM
 
 
 
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