Any tips for steep grade towing?

Discussion in 'RV Tips & Tricks' started by axelbe, Jun 30, 2003.

  1. axelbe

    axelbe New Member

    I'm brand new to the forum and have been enjoying the RV lifestyle for a couple of years now, but with the exception of the occasional bride or hill I have no steep grade towing experience. My rig is a 28ft travel trailer towed by a Chevy 1 ton diesel, and I'm planning a trip from Tx to Oregon via I10 West and then I-5 North. I've read in the Destinations topic of the forum that the "grapevine" is pretty bad (I5 N of Six Flags in CA). If anyone can provide any tips or advice I'd be very grateful. Thanks. I've only been a member 30 minutes and I've already learned alot.
     
  2. hertig

    hertig Senior Member

    Any tips for steep grade towing?

    One thing you can do is use Good Sam's routing service. They mark any severe grades, and reference them against 'grade guides'. To find out details, you'd need to buy the guide, but just knowing where they are is the first step. Then you can throw out all your wife's rocks (see 'The Long, Long Trailer' with Lucy/Desi :) ) before ascending or decending.

    The third step is to have a diesel engine. You may want to have something called an 'exhaust brake' for coming down the grades. If you have an automatic transmission, you will want to ensure you have a huge transmission cooler, and a transmission temp guage is invaluable.

    As for the steps after these, I haven't got them figured out yet, so will leave the podium open for someone with more knowlege in this area
     
  3. C Nash

    C Nash Senior Member

    Any tips for steep grade towing?

    Welcome to the forum
    What year is your truck and which transmission does it have :question: How many miles on the dually. If it's the 6.5 turbo keep the rpm up and use the trans lower gears going down hill. Do not tow in od if it's shifting back and forth but, recond if you have been towing for a couple of years you have all this down pat :) . Now about the bride :bleh: oh well, been married so long can't remember anything that might help you there :approve: What is an occasional bride :eek:
     
  4. axelbe

    axelbe New Member

    Any tips for steep grade towing?

    After 30 or so years of marriage I'm beginning to believe an occasional bride would have been the best kind. Seriously though. I meant to say bridge, but now that I've thought about it - crossing either one could be dangerous :laugh: The diesel is a 6.5 liter turbo, the year model is a 93. I know it already has both a transminnion cooler and an oil cooler, but I'm not sure about the transmission specifics. I know it had a gooseneck hitch before I bought it and added the Class C. I'd like to say thanks to everyone for all the good advice. There are obviously alot of great folks in here.
     
  5. John Harrelson

    John Harrelson New Member

    Any tips for steep grade towing?

    A good prayer is always helpful,AXELBE.
    With a setup like you have, you have no worries going up the "Vine". However.... make sure that your trailer brakes are in good working order and that you brake controller is in tune with the trailer.

    Ask any experienced truck driver and they will tell you that going up the hill is no big deal... you either make it or you don't.... BUT .... coming down the hill is the most dangerous situation any vehicle can be in. Coming down is a thousand times more dangerous than going up..
     
  6. axelbe

    axelbe New Member

    Any tips for steep grade towing?

    Thanks John. I just got the brakes done on the truck, and I'll be sure to have the trailer brakes checked, also. How do I make sure the TT brake controller is in tune with the truck? :question: Thanks again.
     
  7. Henry

    Henry New Member

    Any tips for steep grade towing?

    I don't usually worry about going up hill, just watch your RPM's and temp. Comming down use lower gears, again watch RPM's and temp use brakes sparingly. I like to brake getting speed down quick and getting off brakes letting transmittion do the work.
     
  8. Henry

    Henry New Member

    Any tips for steep grade towing?

    I don't usually worry about going up hill, just watch your RPM's and temp. Comming down use lower gears, again watch RPM's and temp use brakes sparingly. I like to brake getting speed down quick and getting off brakes letting transmittion do the work.
     
  9. rudyhiebert

    rudyhiebert Junior Member

    Any tips for steep grade towing?

    Synthetic engine oil and synthetic transmission and drive train oils will keep the engine and tranny cooler by many degrees. I haven't stopped to ask what oil stranded drivers had in the stranded steaming vehicles but tests show that it does make a differnce.
     

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