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Actual Weights - 2015 New Horizons and 780 with smart


Jack Mayer

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Up until recently I have been carrying lots of extra stuff in our 2015 New Horizons so have not gotten an actual weight that was "good". We now have everything settled into our "road weight" so I scaled it all.

 

Truck: 2009 Volvo 780, 515 hp, 1850 torque, D16, singled

Trailer: 2015 New Horizons 44.5'. Large upper deck (bed/bath) will bias weight forward to pin. Genset installed at rear to counterbalance. Batteries still in front.

 

Truck with smart (full fuel) and 205 gallons truck fuel, driver and dog. Truck has a 13,200lb front axle.

 

Front: 12,640

Rear: 12,220

Total Bobtail with car: 24,860

 

Trailer attached. Trailer has 90% water (90 gallons), 40 gallons black, 6xL16 batteries, genset, 4x305 watt solar panels, wood floor, washer/dryer. In other words, it is heavier than "most".

 

Truck Front: 11,000

Truck Rear: 20,860

 

Trailer axles: 21,200

Trailer Pin: 7,000

Trailer pin %: 25%

Total Trailer: 28,200

 

Total weight: 53,060 lbs.

 

Notice the truck rear axle is overloaded slightly with the fuel levels, etc. I'm not at all concerned about this. Discussions with Volvo engineers resulted in a "don't worry about it" conclusion. I also have an axle temp gauge and it never even approaches hot. But for those carrying more weight you need to stay tandem. I DO carry a lot of "stuff" in the truck that is heavy. I could get back to ratings pretty easy. This is the worst case scenario that I weighed.

 

The ET Sr. with Super Binkley was augmented with the single bag modification which brought the working pin weights up to 8-10K lbs. It is riding on an optimal pressure setting with the current weights. I consider the trailer pin weight percentage to be ideal at 25%. On heavier trailers I like to see the pin weights in the upper range (16-25% is the working range for an RV in most cases).

 

Obviously this is a heavy setup for an RV. But the truck handles it like a dream. The 1850 torque is really "nice". And the BluDot system driving the largest Dexter disc brakes on three axles stops it "fast", and as a single unit - it is totally proportional, just like a semi-trailer.

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My left/right is unavailable until Trey and Susan weigh us at the HDT Rally. In the past the left side is substantially heavier, since that is the kitchen side. On this trailer I moved the batteries to the right side to help balance the weight a little, and I moved the genset to under the living room floor behind the axles. That got about the right pin weight (% wise).

 

The truck wheelbase is 230", but the trailer pin is cantilevered a good bit behind the rear axle. By intention. The unloading of the front is typical of what I would have expected and does not affect handling in the least.

 

Rear tires are fine - I have more than enough rating on them.

 

Trailer tires are H rated and I'm running them at 100 psi until Trey weighs me. The tables would call for 90 psi. But since I don't know the individual loadings that is what I am doing.

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Jack,

If, I am not mistaken you have the 150 gallon tanks that full would add about another 760 lbs. When traveling I always fill completely full. I think this is why when spec'ing my truck Volvo engineers would only do a 23K rear axle. I was also surprised to see how much weight came off the front axle.

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. I think this is why when spec'ing my truck Volvo engineers would only do a 23K rear axle.

See, now that is just weird...to me. The Federal limit on the Interstate system is 20,000 lbs on a single axle. "Most" states have adopted that as their state law. I wonder what the reasoning behind an 23,000 lb axle is when the most weight you can have on it is 20,000 lbs.

 

Curious to what your rear tire load ratings are on the truck?

Most decent H rated 22.5's are rated for 6000+ in dual configuration. (5500+ for G rated). That gives him an easy 22 -24,000+ worth of tire rating. My Continentals are rated at 6940 single/ 6175 dual.

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Phil,

There was also an up charge for the 23K Air suspension upgrade to go with the 23K axle. Because of the Wheel base and overhang 150 gal fuel tanks ordered they didn't give me a choice. The rear axle added 157 lbs as well.

 

M 330145 REAR AXLE PACKAGE MERITOR RS23-160 23,000 LB CAPACITY 0 0 $0

 

M 350457 REAR SUSPENSION PACKAGE 23,000 LB VOLVO AIR SUSPENSION 0 157 $337

 

M TUXA1X DIFFERENTIAL LOCK FULL LOCKING WHEEL DIFFERENTIAL 0 32 $560

 

M TAXB4X REAR AXLE RATIO 2.67 REAR AXLE RATIO 0 0 $0

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See, now that is just weird...to me. The Federal limit on the Interstate system is 20,000 lbs on a single axle. "Most" states have adopted that as their state law. I wonder what the reasoning behind an 23,000 lb axle is when the most weight you can have on it is 20,000 lbs.

 

 

It likely has more to do with the torque input than weight.

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The Federal limit on the Interstate system is 20,000 lbs on a single axle. "Most" states have adopted that as their state law.

 

20,000 lbs per axle, and the bridge formula, apply to the entire National Network, and unlike the length limitations, they're applicable even if you're not commercial. The states not only have to have laws on the books with that weight limit, they have to demonstrate sufficient enforcement, otherwise they lose 10% of their federal highway funding.

 

https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/23/658.17

https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/23/657.19

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Rick, was your truck spec'd by a dealer in the US or Canada? Wondering if the Canadian rules and regs allow a heavier axle.

 

My truck was spec'ed in Canada. I don't think I will even get close to 20K on the rear axle real weight. I think as mentioned above may be due to the fact I spec'ed the 500/1850 engine. I know that David "Whats Next" here on the forum also went with a 23K rear axle but don't know if he ordered it that way or like me was not given the choice. He has the 405/1650 spec and it is a USA spec'ed truck I believe.

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Thanks guys, I had always wondered about the 23,000# axles because I too had read the federal law about 20k per axle nationwide.

Yes, it must be a rating something other than loading because 10 ton/axle is all anyone gets in US.

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The issue with being overweight even a little is the new fangled automatic systems being installed on some roadways. These do have the ability to detect anything out of norm on your rig "in motion". And accurately. Including smart cars overwidth, trailers overlength, and axles overweight. They could even issue you a ticket automatically and mail it to you. They do not at the moment, but they may in the future.

 

Part of being in compliance is having accurate data. Then you can make an informed decision.

 

The reason I published my numbers was for other members to see that you CAN go over on a singled tractor. It is not all that hard if you have heavy equipment. Part of building up a truck is to determine usage, and to have a good idea of what you will haul. My trailer is heavier than most which contributes to the slightly overweight rear axle when fully loaded. So bear that in mind during the design process. Also, consider that I have a D16 which is a very heavy engine....a smaller engine would affect the outcome....again, having the data is important to your decision making process.

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That's because not all trucks run on the Interstate System! In Connecticut you are allowed to run 22,400 per axle as long as the axles are more than 6 feet apart!

So you think Volvo has 23,000 lb rated axles specifically for trucks that want to haul an extra 2400 lbs only in Connecticut ?

 

So does this weight limit of 20K axle weight only apply to Commercial Rigs or it for Any Vehicle on the road?

 

What are the fines for being overweight in an RV if found overweight?

Weight laws apply to every vehicle on the road. That would be what this conversation is about. Jack said he is overweight...in his RV.

And in Texas, the fines for really over weight vehicles get up there.

AXLE WEIGHTS OVERLOADS / HEAVIER THAN ALLOWABLE

OVERAGE:

Less than 2500 pounds = up to $500

2500 - 5000 pounds = up to $1000

More than 5000 Pounds = up to $2500

 

GROSS VEHICLE OVERWEIGHT / HEAVIER THAN ALLOWABLE

OVERAGE:

Less than 2500 pounds = up to $500

2500 - 5000 pounds = up to $1,000

5001 - 10,000 pounds = up to $2,500

10,001 - 20,000 pounds = up to $5,000

20,001-40,000 pounds = up to $7,000

More than 40,000 = up to $10,000

 

All fine amounts DOUBLE for a 3rd offense in a one-year time period.

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On the way to the Rally last year, I didn't pay sufficient attention and stayed in the "In Motion Weighing" lane (once in, you are not supposed leave it). Next thing I get is a lit up "request" to pull into the weigh station. Since i didn't have any desire to "explain myself" on number of issues with my rig they might be curious about, I blew by the station, I am an RV after all. They didn't send a chase car after me, but lets say it was few anxious miles after that.

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The issue with being overweight even a little is the new fangled automatic systems being installed on some roadways. These do have the ability to detect anything out of norm on your rig "in motion". And accurately. Including smart cars overwidth, trailers overlength, and axles overweight. They could even issue you a ticket automatically and mail it to you. They do not at the moment, but they may in the future.

Jack, I do not use, and am therefore not intimately familiar with the automated systems being installed but I am curious about the tolerances and allowances, where an over width smart car is involved. I know that there are numerous "weigh in motion" systems but I have never seen a "measure in motion system". Many commercial box vans are not "square". They lean and actually wobble. Traveling down the road, a 102" wide trailer leaning a bit would, while still 102" at the top and 102" at the bottom being looked at from about could be 104" overall due to the angle. I wonder how these automated systems will be measuring that width (I suspect by looking down from an overhead view as the vehicle passes under) and what "variances" will be set to avoid false readings/alerts. Most of the weigh in motion systems I have looked at have a plus or minus 6-10% accuracy. That is a big variance when you are talking about width. I would assume that would need better accuracy than 6%. That would be 108" on the "plus" side. A sideways smart wouldn't even exceed that range.

I also wonder the motivation that states will have to spend money on overwidth measuring equipment. An over weight vehicle translates into road degradation and costs money to repair, hence the reasoning for enforcement. Over width, causes no extra damage so I wonder how they will justify spending money on equipment to measure this. I am sure we will see more and more "weigh in motion" systems and eventually speed sensors in the roadway but I wonder about how soon we will get measured in motion. It is something to think about.

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