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Author Topic: Towing capacity  (Read 2291 times)

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Offline Chuck White

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Towing capacity
« on: June 02, 2018, 11:35:25 PM »
According to Google, the towing capacity of a 2009 or 2005 Toyota Tacoma is 3,500 pounds!

Reading through my manual and asking questions at WM, my 1995 WM hydraulic weighs in at about 3,000 pounds!

In my day-to-day travels (sawing) I usually don't travel over about 30 miles!

What is the general consensus of either of the Toyota's handling my mill appropriately, now keep in mind that two years ago I installed electric brakes on the mill!

Your thoughts please! 
~Chuck~
Retired USAF (1989), Retired School Bus Driver (2012), and now a Mobile Sawyer
1995 Wood-Mizer LT40HDG2425 Kohler - Shingle & LapSider, Cooks Cat Claw Sharpener, 4-foot Logrite cant hook.
Basic mechanical skills are all that's required to maintain the Wood-Mizer.
I LOVE MY SAWMILL

Offline Ianab

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2018, 12:39:46 AM »
With brakes on the mill, and sensible driving / terrain / trips you should be fine. 

Issues are. 

Extra load on the transmission / overheating. Short trips and taking it easy on the gas get around that. If you slow down on the hills because you aren't flooring it, so be it.  Drop a gear and keep the engine humming at 1/2 throttle/ 1/2 revs, and you wont hurt anything. 

Braking ability. Can you stop in an emergency. Brakes on the mill, and being under the max tow capacity suggests you are OK there. 

Load balance. I assume the mill parks the head in a sensible location so there is a small down load on the tow hitch? That and the mill brakes make it a safer tow. 

Bottom line is that if Toyota didn't think you could tow ~3,000 lb, they would have set the limit lower. 

BTW, my Toyota hatchback is rated locally to tow 2600 lb if the trailer has brakes....   I'd get your WM up to speed just fine, stopping it might be a challenge.  :D  Towing my mill and utility trailer, you hardly notice it's there, but the engine seldom slips into the "eco" mode, so you burn a bit more gas.
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Offline Southside logger

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2018, 12:40:43 AM »
Do you have a transmission temperature gauge for the truck?  If not can you install one?  A hot transmission would be a red flag that you are towing too much.  
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Offline schmism

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2018, 12:42:49 AM »
Ive had 3000 behind my 1998 4runner.   you feel it but handled it fine.

The 2wd taco will struggle a lot more than the 4wd.   the 4cyl will also struggle.   

V6 4x4 should handle it fine at least here in the generally flat midwest.   If your in the hills it will work the truck fairly hard.
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Offline PA_Walnut

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2018, 06:06:30 AM »
Synthetics in the driveline is a good upgrade, especially in working it hard enough that heat becomes an issue (lots of big hills, etc.)

The good news is that anything that may become an issue after a while, is WAY cheaper to fix than a new truck!  ;D :D
I own my own small piece of the world on an 8 acre plot on the side of a mountain with walnut, hickory, ash and spruce.
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Offline Chuck White

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2018, 07:15:38 AM »
My current truck is a 2003 Silverado, 176,000 miles, and it was just discovered that there is a small crack in the frame where the round cross-member is located!

So, I'm looking for a replacement since this truck won't pass inspection if it is done thoroughly!

~Chuck~
Retired USAF (1989), Retired School Bus Driver (2012), and now a Mobile Sawyer
1995 Wood-Mizer LT40HDG2425 Kohler - Shingle & LapSider, Cooks Cat Claw Sharpener, 4-foot Logrite cant hook.
Basic mechanical skills are all that's required to maintain the Wood-Mizer.
I LOVE MY SAWMILL

Offline Onthesauk

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2018, 10:21:35 AM »
Have a 2009 Tacoma and pull a Wooldridge aluminum boat.  Weighs less then your mill, maybe 2000+ loaded but hardly know it's back there.  MPG does drop a little bit.  Truck has been bullet proof.
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Offline CCCLLC

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2018, 12:27:27 PM »
I brought my lt 40 wide home from Albermarle with my 2009 Tacoma. 
Electric brakes hooked up, hardly tell it was back there.

Offline sawguy21

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2018, 04:11:46 PM »
Keep in mind that the factory rating is with an empty vehicle, minimum fuel and a 150 lb driver (how many of us weigh 150 anymore ;D). All the 'stuff' in thebox reduces that number so you will be pushing the limits of your Tacoma. Keep the speed down especially on down grades and be careful not to let the tail wag the dog. We tried towing a small fifth wheel that was within the weight rating for our Ranger, it was not a fun experience and gas mileage was atrocious.
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Offline dgdrls

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2018, 05:04:00 PM »
Hi Chuck,

I had a 2wd Taco, 4cyl/stick.  I would not pull #3K with it,  brakes or not.
Not to mention unless its an X-tra cab or crew,  you'll be packed into it.
With that said, it was a dandy truck to homeowner & commute with and very reliable indeed.

I would look for another full size, even 2WD as long as it has a locker/limited slip rear.


D


Offline SawyerTed

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2018, 05:13:12 PM »
+1 on what saw guy says.  Fuel in the truck approx. 120 pounds, extra fuel for sawmill +/- 80 pounds (2 five gallon jugs), extra blades, cant hooks, chainsaw, fuel and oil for chainsaw,  miscellaneous tools, chain, leaf blower, blocks for leveling the mill, a cooler with drinks/lunch and whatever else a mobile sawyer needs.  All that stuff isn't figured into the weight when manufacturers rate vehicles for towing.  I bet my "kit" for mobile sawing is at least 500 pounds.

I prefer a full size pickup to ensure I have the capacity, power and stopping power.  Around here people think very highly of their Tacoma trucks. They are great vehicles in their class but people will pay top dollar for them here.
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Offline Southside logger

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2018, 06:32:09 PM »
and a 150 lb driver (how many of us weigh 150 anymore )


That is a bit ridiculous for sure.  I didn't weigh 150 lbs when I first got my license, and by no means was I overweight.  
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Offline TKehl

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2018, 11:16:58 AM »
There are brakes on the mill, but does your Taco have a brake controller?

If so, I would do it.  (As long as it isn't lifted or significantly oversized tires.)  

Start slow until you get a feel for how it responds.  Would be effortless with a full size truck, but with a Taco, you will need to drive attentively and think about the load and road instead of just the road.
Lucas 6-13+slabber, Mr. Sawmill bandmill, orange chainsaws, JD SSL, Case Backhoe, farm tractors, trailers, and 150ish acres of trees.  Fledgling woodshop with CNC router, laser engraver, Woodmaster 712, and a Berlin 108 moulder (project).  Oh, and a lovely (patient) wife and four offbearers.

Offline Chuck White

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2018, 12:22:10 PM »
Don't know if either of these trucks has a brake controller or not, but I'd just have to have one installed!
~Chuck~
Retired USAF (1989), Retired School Bus Driver (2012), and now a Mobile Sawyer
1995 Wood-Mizer LT40HDG2425 Kohler - Shingle & LapSider, Cooks Cat Claw Sharpener, 4-foot Logrite cant hook.
Basic mechanical skills are all that's required to maintain the Wood-Mizer.
I LOVE MY SAWMILL

Offline Brucer

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2018, 12:50:32 AM »
My 1980 half ton diesel Chevy was rated by the manufacturer to pull a 2000 lb. load. The manual mill I was about to buy was listed at 3000 lb. What to do?

An experienced mechanic said the transmission in my truck was built like a brick outhouse. All I needed to do was add the biggest auxiliary transmission cooler I could get my hands on.

A guy from the Commercial Vehicle inspection department told he as long as I had electric brakes on the mill (plus a controller in the truck), the only thing that mattered to them was that I didn't exceed the rated axle load.

The Service Manager at the local Chevy dealer said I'd be fine with a big auxiliary transmission cooler added, but to be sure to put it in series with the existing transmission cooler (which was built into the radiator). He also told me it would be slow going up the "hills" in these parts.

So I added the extra transmission cooler and everything worked out fine. A year later I traded up to a hydraulic LT40 that weighed in at 3500 pounds and the truck handled that as well.

They four key points were: 1) electric brakes with controller, 2) axles rated for the load, 3) transmission built to handle the load, 4) extra transmission cooling.
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Offline YellowHammer

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #15 on: June 05, 2018, 08:00:48 AM »
The survival of the truck will be based on how much you tow, and how you tow, if you are anywhere close to the max capacity, or if towing something the truck can "feel".  Even from my first vehicle, a Chevy Blazer, every truck I've owned has failed a transmission due to lots and lots of towing.  Boats, trailers, equipment, etc, some just down the road, some to the coast, many hours away.  Most tows were well within manuafacturer rating.  Just lots and lots of towing.  

So through the years, I failed two transmissions on the one Blazer, two transmissions on Chevy full size 1500's, two transmissions on two different Fords, one a 6 cyclinder, one a 2500 gas burner, and finally am having 200,000 mile transmission life success per vehicle using diesel pickups, which arguably, are designed for towing.

So the point I'm trying to make is that I've never once failed an engine, always a transmission or clutch so that is the part of your truck you should pay close attention to.  Put a trans gauge on and pay attention to it.  Put on a trans cooler.  Change your fluid a lot if an automatic, as soon as it changes color from bright red it means the trans got hot so drain it and refill. Crisply shift the clutch, don't slip it.  Drive slower, drive in lower gear, let people pass, etc, keep the stress and temp off the transmission. Run the engine at higher revs to use a lower gear, as in tow mode.  
Just my personal experience.    
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Offline Hilltop366

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #16 on: June 05, 2018, 08:19:48 AM »
I'm thinking the 3500 lbs is the bumper tow rating, found this on Car and Driver.

The base Tacoma's towing capacity is a punk 3500 pounds, but ours came with the optional SR5 No. 8 trailer-tow package that included a hitch, along with transmission- and engine-oil coolers. So equipped, the Tacoma's pulling capacity increases to 6500 pounds

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #17 on: June 05, 2018, 08:59:21 AM »
For my use I would have to have a 4X4 with limited slip.  If I could only have one the nod would go to the latter because a 4X4 without limited slip with get you stuck with one rear and one front wheel spinning.  A ¾ ton truck will also cause problems because of the addition truck weight.

My "perfect" sawmill truck would be a ½ ton, 4X4, limited slip, and winch.  My Toyota Tundra was a perfect sawmill truck.  :)  My present F250 is not but I am limited to one truck and choices/concessions have to be made.

Chuck, if you are OK without 4X4, the Tacoma should serve you well.  smiley_thumbsup
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Offline hopm

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #18 on: June 05, 2018, 09:34:37 AM »
Pulled alot and for a long time....hooked up to some stuff I knew better and in one way or another it cost me...learned my lesson a year ago when I took a couple of sleigh rides in the ford getting pushed by a boat. Decided I would get something to handle what I hook to and protect me from my ignorance.

BTW...the first red flag is if you question if it's too much for your tow vehicle, then it's probably too much for your tow vehicle

Offline Chuck White

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Re: Towing capacity
« Reply #19 on: June 05, 2018, 12:09:32 PM »
The two trucks I'm looking at are 4-door models, and 4X4 with towing package and the transmission and oil coolers!

Both trucks look identical except one has a tonau cover, which will have to go!  One is 2006 and the other is 2010.

The dealer confirmed what Hilltop mentioned, towing capacity of 6,500 pounds as opposed to the basic model of 3,500 pounds
~Chuck~
Retired USAF (1989), Retired School Bus Driver (2012), and now a Mobile Sawyer
1995 Wood-Mizer LT40HDG2425 Kohler - Shingle & LapSider, Cooks Cat Claw Sharpener, 4-foot Logrite cant hook.
Basic mechanical skills are all that's required to maintain the Wood-Mizer.
I LOVE MY SAWMILL


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