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toy hauler for kayaks and bikes; or other options?


TBrase

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First post since I am new to this discussion forum. This Forum has SO much information that I have just begun to explore. I've been reading 2 threads about full-timing it in a toy hauler and several threads on reviews of toy haulers.

 

My wife and I will be buying a 5th wheel in the next few months and full-timing it June 2015. I've retired from teaching and will be doing consulting work while on the road using an internet connection.

 

The first issue is buying a "5er" (sorry if I used that incorrectly, but am trying to pick up on the acronyms and lingo). We have kayaks and bikes so was planning on a 10' garage toy hauler. But after reading the comments here, I am second guessing that.

 

My question is: Are there other suggestions for hauling 2 kayaks, 2 bikes, and fishing equipment other than in a toy hauler? Kayaks won't fit in pickup bed; wife would like bikes inside or covered.

 

I just bought a 2014 Chev 2500HD Crew Cab with 6.6 diesel standard box.

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Welcome to the forum. Couple of thoughts. Your truck will handle a medium size fifth wheel roughly in the 14k lbs to a max of maybe 16k lbs. so keep that in mind while shopping for a toy hauler. A lot of toy haulers have a built in aux fuel tank with a pump, pressure washer and a few other goodies that can pile up the weight. Eliminating these if not needed will help lighten it up.

 

I have seen kayaks on rigs of every description but mostly on roofs of RVs and trucks. If you are determined to get a fifth wheel then a toyhauler will work but you give up a lot of liveable space. I never could convince my wife that we needed a TH for that reason. As you can see in my signature I now have a motorhome but recently switched from a fifth wheel. We find the. MH works better for us as we can pull a pickup with our toys in and on the pickup.

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You can get an Open Range

Front Living Room with Massive Exterior Storage (RF/MF346FLR)

At Open Range, we have taken storage capacity on a front living room to a whole new level. This floorplan provides over 200 Cu. Ft. of exterior storage and can accommodate (2) 10ft Kayaks as well as 4 Bikes in the rear storage area. 38' GAWR 12000 lbs GVWR 14,300 Net NCC 3281

 

Or the RF/MF376 the same provides over 200 Cu. Ft. of exterior storage and can accommodate (2) 10ft Kayaks as well as 4 Bikes in the rear storage area, 42' GAWR 14000 lbs GVWR 16,600 Net NCC 3659 This maybe to heavy for your truck.

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We haul 2 kayaks, suspended over our 2 Harleys....along with whatever else we can fit (full size grill, tools, clothes, hobby material, supplies) into our 20' cargo trailer/garage. The cargo trailer provides a reasonably safe, secure place to store "toys" out of sight while parked. Traveling this way does have the disadvantage of needing a second tow vehicle, and requires thoroughly scouting for places to park, or using a stout enough MH as a tow vehicle, but it has worked well for us for years.

 

Regards

Gemstone

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I have always full timed in a Toyhauler. But it's just me, with an occasional extended visit from my youngest daughter. I'm not sure if it would work full time with a couple. There are others who may say different, just not me.

 

I was very disappointed in the mass marketed toyhaulers. Most are for strictly weekend and maybe a week or two once a year. Despite looking at Hundreds and Hundreds before purchasing my first one, I found myself still disappointed. I probably expect too much.

 

I am starting my second year in my Custom built toyhauler and for something like I have you will need to graduate to an HDT. There are photos and links to photos if you search my posts. You are free to message me if you have specific questions. I am Happy with my Home, there are things I would change but I don't plan on having another one built so I will work at resolving some of the issues over time. One thing I will say, you will never have enough storage for everything you might want to bring with you. Especially if there are two people each thinking their items are more important. Weight will be a HUGE concern in a non custom unit. You will not believe how much things weigh and even those that don't weigh much add up when all put together.

 

Rod

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Thanks for the quick replies! I've started looking for racks on the back of the fifth wheel but hadn't considered on top of pickup.

 

I am interested in learning more about the Open Range. I couldn't find anything on the website that gave more information on the large storage that you mentioned; Is it on any of the floorplans that have the front living space ? 346 and 376?

 

When I bought the 6.6 diesel, people told me that it would pull any RV. And since we'll be traveling light (no ATV or cars) I thought we would be good.

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First of all, let me correct an omission by some of us here and give you another big, Escapee welcome to the forums! It is always good to have new folks join us here so please do become a regular contributor and do not hesitate to start new subjects, ask questions, offer comments, or just join the chatter. We need fresh opinions and ideas so new folks are very important to us.

 

We have a lot of RVing experience but since none of that was with a fifth wheel trailer I'll leave most of that to others here but suggest that before you get very far into the search you need to make sure that you understand the weight limitations of your truck and also of the chosen RV since they can be critical to your success. The fact that you have already purchased a tow truck will be very limiting on what you can safely and comfortably tow. I is also very important to realize that the RV sales people will usually tell you that your truck can tow most anything that they believe they can get you to buy, so do not use that information to choose. Many of the RV experienced people here can tell you from experience that even if the RV you tow is just below the maximum tow ratings of the truck when on the road, it may get the job done but it will not be pleasant to drive and will be pushing the safety limits. If you are not familiar with the weight limits and terms, let me suggest this article as a good place to start to learn about those limits.

 

There are many things to consider as you begin your new adventure and in addition to the information that members here share about things RV related, I suggest that you also explore the many websites and blogs that contributors here keep as you will find a tremendous amount of technical information as well as hints about the lifestyle. Many of us have a link to our websites in our signature line.

When I bought the 6.6 diesel, people told me that it would pull any RV. And since we'll be traveling light (no ATV or cars) I thought we would be good.

This is a subject that I suggest you explore in great detail. It is probably true that the truck will move any RV, but the issue is can it do so safely, can it stop it in an emergency, and will that truck hold up towing something as heavy as the choices out there?

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Welcome!!!

 

We have do/done it!

 

We had a toyhauler, 36' Raptor pulled with our Dodge Ram Diesel 4x4. We hauled the kayaks & bikes in the garage. Pulled it all over the States & Mexico. We had 110,000 miles on the Raptor when we made a change. We had no problems giving up the space from the living area. The benifits of the larger tanks made boondocking much easier. Completed a 6 week trip in Mexico mainland without ever having to add Mexico water via water management (125 gals of fresh water).

 

Now we have a Diesel Class A motorhome. We still take the toys with us. First we mounted a trailer server on the front of the MH. We have pulled the Dodge Ram with a roof rack carrying the kayaks and the bikes on a rack in the front server. We also pull a Jeep CJ5 with a roof rack carrying the kayaks and a bike rack for bicycles in the trailer server of the Jeep. In the front MH server a motorcycle rack with a dirt bike. Makes a great rig! If we don't take the toys, we pull a hybrid Ford C-Max 4 down and bicycles in the front MH trailer server.

 

Will confuse pulling the Ram was not enjoyable, too heavy!

 

rocmoc n AZ/Mexico

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If I was a full-timer, my dream rig follows:

 

Custom-Built New Horizons 44 footer with an 8 foot garage.

 

Totally self-contained with a 10w Onan DG, 200 gallons of FW, etc.

 

Pulled by a Freightliner Cascadia or Volvo Class 8 Truck with a 600hp Detroit Diesel with a Little Car sitting behind the Cab.

 

But then my budget would die!!

 

JohnnyB

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There is a picture on page 6 of this http://www.openrangerv.com/mesa-ridge/Mesa-Ridge-2015.pdf and another a little more than half way down here http://www.openrangerv.com/whats-new/new-features.php

 

I have looked at it in person, in fact I saw the prototype coming off the production line and it is a huge area. The Kayaks go in front of the bikes.

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We lived in an Open Range toy hauler for a while. We pretty much had to go with a toy hauler for space issues because there are eight of us. When researching toy haulers, we were disappointed in the quality of most of them and knew our family would tear them up in a short amount of time. For our budget, the Open Range was the best made toy hauler we could find. We were very pleased with it.

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Not aimed at the OP but for others who may see this thread and not yet decided on a direction, we own a 1999 2-door Wrangler that we tow with our 36' diesel pusher motor home. We have a spare-tire-mount bike rack where we carry two mountain bikes. Our two skin-on-frame kayaks (29 lbs each and 11-feet long) that we carry on a rack over the soft-top Wrangler. I built one of the kayaks at an Oregon symposium in 2010 and a friend of mine built a second but decided to get into "rolling" as a sport and left her SOF with us.

 

It's not unusual for kayaks to weigh 50lbs (it all depends on what they're made of... kevlar is light.... molded plastic is generally much heavier) and between the bikes (one is carbon fiber) and the kayaks and other gear we have about 150lbs of extra weight being towed by the RV.

 

Good folding kayaks were another option (Feathercraft) but they are very expensive. Inflatable kayaks were not an option for us but might work for others.

 

WDR

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mocroc, What is a trailer server?

Trailer server is the square piece of steel mounted to the tow vehicle you insert a trailer hitch or tow bar into. In the old days it was just a flat piece of steel that was mount to the tow vehicle with the trailer ball bolted thu a hole.

 

rocmoc n AZ/ Mexico

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OK, I have heard it called the front hitch but a long time ago and have used one once or twice for spotting boats and trailers from that hitch. Just never heard the terminology. There was a phrase or term that was in the topic that was shut down that I didn't recognize by the terminology but didn't get around to asking now I can't remember exactly what it was but if I recall it had to do with the white lind on the right edge of the roadway. I know sometimes wording is regional.

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I just saw a guy go past me in the RV park with a truck pulling a fifthwheel. On the front of the truck he had a hitch reciver with a rack going up and connected to a rack just behind the cab. On this set up he had a row boat . Kayaks would work good on this kind of set up as well.

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Thanks for all the comments and suggestions. There are enough options out there, that we probably won't be getting a toy hauler. I like JimAlberta suggestions of a rack over the cab and N Tex Dave of in-trailer storage! I'll be back to let everybody what we did and how we like it.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 4 weeks later...

Woo-Hoo, just ordered a new Open Range Mesa Ridge 346FLR. There is plenty of room for our two kayaks and two bikes in the rear compartment where they are easy to get to and yet out of the way. Decided this was a better option than a toy hauler or mounting somewhere. Thanks for everybody's comments!!

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