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Old 07-09-2014, 08:05 PM   #1
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Anyone Redwooded New Mexico Hwy 64?

We are new Redwood RVers and as heavy as it is, it makes my truck feel a little anemic (maybe a lot). If you have traveled Hwy 64 in New Mexico pulling a Redwood, we would sure appreciate any info on what we might encounter. We're planning a trip from Texas to Chama, NM. Thanks in advance.
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Old 07-09-2014, 11:20 PM   #2
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Can't help with the truck, but welcome to the Redwood family tree and the forum. Everyone on here is very helpful. Maybe you should provide more details about your tow vehicle, as I'm sure someone can help.
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Old 07-09-2014, 11:53 PM   #3
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I haven't figured out how to post my tow vehicle info where it displays. It is a 2000 F350 SRW 7.3 diesel 4X4.
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Old 07-10-2014, 03:32 AM   #4
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We have a 2012 F350 SRW, CC, 4x2 with the max 11,500 lb GVWR. Even this truck is loaded to the max with the Redwood hitched up. I keep our coach about 15,500 lbs and a pin weight of 3,000 to 3,100lbs. Even with this I am within 150lbs of max load on the rear axle. This is for a 2012 F350, but not sure what the specs are for a 2000 model

These coaches are heavy, with some owners having pin weights over 4,000 lbs.

The SRW tows like a dream, especially with recently installed air bags, which are highly recommended. Have been through the BC mountains including up and down 8% hills. Downshift and it goes down hills with hardly any use of brakes.

Welcome to the forum.
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Old 07-10-2014, 10:40 PM   #5
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Thanks for the info. I assume you have an automatic transmission. Would you please verify this? I am concerned about coming down the mountains as well as climbing them. Also, my truck is pretty leveled out without airbags. Would you please let me know what benefit the bags are? And I'm curious what rearend gear you have. My truck has a 3.73. Maybe a lower gear ratio might help.
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Old 07-10-2014, 11:53 PM   #6
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Biggest thing with the airbags is they improve the rear suspension travel and keep it from bottoming out. My Dually sits level with the coach hooked up, but with the airbags I can vary pressure for ride quality. Pretty much stops all of the violent chucking when you come off a bridge or hit a big dip in the road.

I'm not sure what rear ratio is in Andy's SRW, my Dually is 3.73. Biggest thing is that the new diesels are so much more powerful. Ours are 400hp and 800 lbs torque and the '15s are 450 and 920 lbs. Towing the coach, it knows it's back there but doesn't really care. Stability is great and with the cruise set on 63-65 I consistently get 10.5-11 mpg unless in the hills and eastern mountains, then I'm into the upper 9's
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Old 07-11-2014, 12:46 AM   #7
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TexasRVer,
I used to own a 2000 F-250 with more or less the same setup as you. Is your truck modified at all? Chips, exhaust, gauges? That particular year is known to have transmission issues, so be very careful about overheating it and take your time with the climbs.
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Old 07-11-2014, 03:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasRver View Post
Thanks for the info. I assume you have an automatic transmission. Would you please verify this? I am concerned about coming down the mountains as well as climbing them. Also, my truck is pretty leveled out without airbags. Would you please let me know what benefit the bags are? And I'm curious what rearend gear you have. My truck has a 3.73. Maybe a lower gear ratio might help.
Affirmative, we have an automatic gearbox. The rear end is 3.5 on the SRW. As Vaughan mentioned the air bags sure help with ride quality, especially on bridges.
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Old 07-11-2014, 05:53 AM   #9
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I went through Southern New Mexico on I10 a couple about a month ago, there were hills, but no big mountain passes. I have not traveled 64 for many years but it does have a some mountain passes at the eastern end (which straddles the Taos/Colfax county line). There is a long succession of closely spaced curves (advisory speeds in the 25-35 MPH range). You will definitely be driving on mountain roads. Palo Flechado Pass on 64 crests at 9,101 feet. Taos Canyon is another long climb or decent depending on your direction.

Your 2000 7.3 liter should get you over the passes if you go slow. I'm not sure what your 5th wheel weight is? As piper guy stated above, todays diesels are more powerful. I have a 6.4l PowerStroke and I'm thinking about trading it in for a more powerful engine. Mine struggled climbing out of Sacramento CA on I80 over the Sierra's, of course the fact that it was 108 degrees out did not help.
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Old 07-11-2014, 01:52 PM   #10
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Mine struggled climbing out of Sacramento CA on I80 over the Sierra's, of course the fact that it was 108 degrees out did not help.
Next week we leave at 04:00 to save the heat while climbing the Rockies outside Vancouver. Forecast is for high 90's to low 100's, so I want to get the worst grades before 09:00.

Oh well at least we also arrive and get set up early.
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Old 07-11-2014, 02:29 PM   #11
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Affirmative, we have an automatic gearbox. The rear end is 3.5 on the SRW. As Vaughan mentioned the air bags sure help with ride quality, especially on bridges.
Andy, I think you might have a typo and meant 3.55 for the rear end on ours...

I upgraded from a tuned 2002 7.3 to the 6.7 and it's night and day...
with the tranny being the best upgrade!

the 7.3 is a proven performer and can be made to be a beast, but the tranny has to be cared for as it's the weakest link (IMHO)
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Old 07-11-2014, 04:11 PM   #12
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This is my 2001 7.3 with 3:73 pulling Wolf Creek Pass in southern Colorado (which it did about a dozen times). It also pulled I-70 over the Rockies, and every other pass I had time to pull.

No engine brake, no tuner, just stock. It never moaned, up or down hill. You'll be fine!

As John said, just keep that transmission clean and flushed, and go easy on it. Ultimately, it was transmission failure that left this one on the used car lot in favor of a new Ford.

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Old 07-11-2014, 04:34 PM   #13
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Atom,
Keep in mind I'm the farthest from the weight police, just asking out of curiosity. How heavy was that setup? And was it squirrely with the double pull?
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Old 07-11-2014, 09:39 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by johnboytoo View Post
Andy, I think you might have a typo and meant 3.55 for the rear end on ours...

I upgraded from a tuned 2002 7.3 to the 6.7 and it's night and day...
with the tranny being the best upgrade!

the 7.3 is a proven performer and can be made to be a beast, but the tranny has to be cared for as it's the weakest link (IMHO)
Affirmative, forgot the 2nd 5 - should be 3.55
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Old 07-12-2014, 04:08 AM   #15
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Brad, inquiring minds want to know ...... how lonnnnng was that rig ? Must have been like being the engineer for a train !
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Old 07-12-2014, 01:55 PM   #16
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Atom, I see you tow a boat behind the RW. Do you have electric brakes on the boat trailer?
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Old 07-12-2014, 04:41 PM   #17
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The total length was 76 feet - (a bit over the limit for most states I traveled in). Ironically the combined weight of the boat and Montana (4,200 + 13,700 = 17,900) was only about 700 more than the Redwood is now by itself

A two axle boat trailer tows very true and reacts slow, so the whole thing towed very nicely. When I first looked in the mirror I figured I needed a caboose, but it only took a day to get used to it. Because of the wide tail swing on the 5th wheel, the boat tracked out wide in a turn and was no concern in town for curbs etc. Once the 5th cleared, the boat was fine. I did have to focus across Nebraska in a cross wind to keep the tail from wagging, but friends that followed always gave us a status as we traveled.

Its actually common as mud here in Colorado. I probably counted 30 5th/boat combos over the last few weeks on vacation.
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Old 07-12-2014, 04:43 PM   #18
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Atom, I see you tow a boat behind the RW. Do you have electric brakes on the boat trailer?
JHardin - at that time the boat trailer had surge brakes, so all I needed was brake/tail/turn. Since then, I have converted the boat to electric brakes, and would need to wire different if I ever tried to tow behind a 5th wheel again. We can't tow it behind the Redwood, because length would be pushing 90 ft. For your ATV trailer, make sure your trailer tongue is long enough that the trailer doesn't hit the back of the Redwood in a turn. Not a big issue with a boat, but a square trailer can hit, as found by another member here with his ATV trailer..
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Old 07-13-2014, 01:48 AM   #19
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Thank you for all of the contributions! This forum is great and we are looking forward to sharing info with you guys in the future.
My rig grosses at 24,000 with full fuel, occupants, loaded up except empty bk/gray tanks and about 25 gal of fresh. My truck grosses about 8,400 with fuel/people, so I reckon the Redwood comes in at about 15,600 or so. My truck is completely stock and I did have transmission probs at 100,000 miles, I think from pulling livestock and rv trailers using O/D. FYI...Also, after the transmission rebuild, we added another transmission cooler to back up the stock one. After about 30,000 miles I had it in the shop for something else. The mechanic advised to take it off because it strains the transmission to suck the fluid through both coolers.
I have gotten a lot of education in the last two days from this forum and also other sources. Until a couple of days ago, I was under the impression that all F350s were equal with the exception of mine, which has the 7.3 which people rave about. I have learned that my truck only produces 235hp/500ft.lbs torque (when it was new)!! No wonder it feels anemic! The performance of the newer diesels leaves mine in the dust. We have canceled our northern New Mexico trip until we replace our truck. I'm glad we didn't get up there and break something. It might be money well spent to get a 2015 because of the increased hp/torque.
Re: the airbags....I am definitely talked into getting them, but will wait on the newer truck.
Once again, we are thankful for the input. Know any good deals on F350s, maybe invoice plus $500????
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Old 07-13-2014, 03:48 AM   #20
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If your buying a new Ford go to one of the Ford forums and ask someone for a X-Plan pin. This will get you about invoice price plus any applicable incentives. Occasionally you can negotiate a better deal but in general the x-plan is hassle free, even for a negotiator like me I find the plan easier to use.
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