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Old 09-16-2007, 05:50 PM   #1
New Member
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Charles Town
Posts: 4
M.O.C. #7651
We'd like to introduce ourselves

Hi there,
My name is Bob and I am joined by my wife Sallie.
We just came back from the PA RV show in Hershey, PA this weekend and we are more convinced that Montana is the way we are very likely to go.
Compared the Montana to others in its Price Point and we feel the Montana beats them all in build quality, features, and reliability.
We are particularly interested in the 3500RL (my favorite) and Sallie is partial to the 3000RK.
My only concern is that our TV is a 2500HD Duramax/Allison 6. Any folks out there towing these larger rigs with 3/4 ton series trucks?

Thank you,
Bob and Sallie
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Old 09-16-2007, 05:59 PM   #2
stiles watson
Montana Master
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Leona
Posts: 6,382
M.O.C. #2059
There is a poll on this forum that shows there are a large number of RVers that tow 5th wheels with 3/4-ton PUs. You will have to decide what you will do for yourself.
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Old 09-16-2007, 05:59 PM   #3
Montana Master
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Winfield
Posts: 7,327
M.O.C. #6846
Bob and Sallie,
Welcome to the forum. I don't think you will go wrong with your Montana choice, but (Bob - keep in mind that the only time everybody is happy is when Mama's happy). Your initial question is always a very contentious one on this forum and other's, unfortunately I took a solemn vow to myself to not address the issue that you have brought up so as to not instigate or further previous rabid discussions!! I will say that it has to be a personal choice that you will have to be happy with. Do your homework, and good luck with your decision.

Bingo and Cathy - Our adventures begin in the hills of WV. We are blessed by our 2014 3850FL Big Sky (previous 2011 3750FL and 2007 3400RL) that we pull with a 2007 Chevy Silverado Classic DRW CC dually.
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Old 09-17-2007, 02:35 AM   #4
Montana Fan
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Sparta
Posts: 167
M.O.C. #6661
Montana,s are one of the best pulling trailers out there,but like Stiles and Bncinwv said, do your home work on what what TV to use.
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Old 09-17-2007, 08:23 AM   #5
Seasoned Camper
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Calgary
Posts: 72
M.O.C. #6319
Welcome to the MOC

We chose the 3500RL for a variety of reasons

1. The fridge is right by the door. This eliminates tracking dirt through the trailer evry time you are in and out to get something from the fridge - especially important with grandchildren.

2. We love the rear living room - feels like home. We winter camp a fair bit here in Canada and this room is so cozy to relax in and read a book or watch a movie - with the fireplace on. It also doubles as a great second bedroom which can be closed off from the rest of the trailer.

3. We were concerned about dishes etc. in the cupboards bouncing around when travelling. Previous posts on this forum confirm this. We do not have this problem with the 3500RL.

4. The only thing that we feel we had to give up was the extra kitchen counter space. Our second choice was the 3400 which had more counter space, however, the separate living room was more important to us.

These are some items which influenced our decision. Your wants, needs and preferences might be totally different than ours. Just remember that if your wife makes the final decision, it will always be the right one.

I am one of those that pulls with a 2500HD CC. Previous posts are correct. Do your homework and pull with the truck you are comfortable with. I have had no issues or problems with my truck but we are not fulltimers and don't put a lot of miles on pulling the trailer.
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Old 09-17-2007, 08:54 AM   #6
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Charles Town
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M.O.C. #7651
quote:Originally posted by Robertone

Any folks out there towing these larger rigs with 3/4 ton series trucks?
Ok, ok, sorry I opened a can of worms here. I promise not to revisit this particular subject again! However, thanks for putting out the welcome mat.
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Old 09-17-2007, 10:07 AM   #7
Eagle Man
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Telling
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M.O.C. #7430
quote:Originally posted by Robertone

quote:Originally posted by Robertone

Any folks out there towing these larger rigs with 3/4 ton series trucks?
Ok, ok, sorry I opened a can of worms here. I promise not to revisit this particular subject again! However, thanks for putting out the welcome mat.
Do the numbers yourself, then you can make a knowledgeable decision. Just remember that 'towing' is a none issue, all diesels will tow any Montana, pin weight is the key issue.
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Old 09-18-2007, 05:47 AM   #8
Montana Master
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Pagosa Springs
Posts: 3,711
M.O.C. #3120
We'd like to extend the welcome mat too. Montana has been a great choice for us, the forum is worth half the price of the unit.

Do your homework on your truck, forget the brand names, and live with your decision....that's the only advice we think is legitimate. Just about everyone has the perfect truck.

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Old 09-18-2007, 07:57 AM   #9
Montana Sky
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Location: Down the Road
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M.O.C. #889
Welcome to the club! You have come to the right place to get any and all of your questions answered.
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Old 09-18-2007, 05:30 PM   #10
Okie Guy
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Olahoma City
Posts: 1,219
M.O.C. #6054
Welcome to "Family Montana."

I have been through the tow vehicle question numerous times over the past year. I even purchased a couple of older TV's to see how each brand performed. After an expensive and exhausting search I found the TV which was right for me. This time it just happened to be a brand I don't care for but has the drive train I prefered.

One thing you can do if your worried about tow weight is go to a sale lot(cattle or horse) and shoot the breeze with a couple of farmers about their tow vehicles. They will offer you a wealth of information.

I have the advantage of working at a feed store part of the time so I could poll people bringing their horses to the race track from other states. I found each vehicle has its own little quarks. If you buy a ford keep an extra cam sensor in the glove box. If you buy a dodge be prepared to have the fuel system serviced as routine maintance. After too many tranny problems I had ruled out the Chevy long ago. After several months of my poll I made my decision and haven't looked back.

Take your time.
Drive everything you can.
Pick what makes you comfortable when you get behind the wheel.

Hope this helps.
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Old 09-19-2007, 08:57 AM   #11
Montana Fan
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: New Haven
Posts: 170
M.O.C. #6271
Welcome to the forum and to the Montana Family! You will find a wealth of information here. Never be afraid to ask anything! We have the 3500RL and love it. We chose this particular model because of the rear living and being able to close it off. It makes a great 2nd bedroom and when our daughter has her friends over, they can stay up and watch movies and we can go to bed and not be bothered! You do give up some counter space, but it was a trade we were willing to do. No matter which model you see, you're going to like certain aspects of each one. Too bad we can't mold it all together and get one camper with EVERYTHING we want. I have to agree with everyone else...check your particular tow vehicle and see what it can pull. Make your decision from there. We have friends who use a 3/4 ton Ford to pull the same size trailer and close to the same weight. Just check your pin weight...that's pretty important. Good luck.
Cheryl :-)
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Old 09-26-2007, 06:40 AM   #12
Bill and Lisa
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Join Date: Mar 2007
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M.O.C. #6958
Maybe by sticking to facts I can help you know what to look at without opening the preverbial can of worms.

I tow a 2007 3000RK with a 2001 Chevy 2500HD Duramax/Allison. What follows is only my experience....yours' may differ.

The Chevy has a GVWR of 9200 pounds, I am over that.
The rear axle rating is 6084 pounds, I was close on that.

What I have done to give myself increased piece of mind

1. upgraded tires to 265/75R16. Previous rear tire max load was 3042 each (6084 total). Total max load for new tires is 6830.

2. Added air bags to:
a. improve ride
b. return truck to level which shifted some of the weight to the front axle and some of the trailer weight to the rear axles.

3. FW tank is forward of the axles on the 3000RK so I only run with tank 1/3 full to minimize pin weight.

4. Don't fully empty the kitchen Grey tank unless it is my last stop before reaching home. That weight, all the way at the rear of the unit helps keep down the pin weight (which is what pushes the hitched truck over the GVCWR)

New problem I am aware of based upon discussions with the Moryde folks at the rally. Your trailer should be towed as level as possible to evenly distribute the load on the dual axles. Level is determined by measuring distance from fram to ground at the front and the rear of the unit.

Prior to adding the air bags my 2500 squatted quite a bit and I was still about 1" higher at the front of the monty than at the rear.

Now that I have added the air bags and the truck is back to level I am about 5" higher at the front of the trailer than at the rear. Not good. For around $800 Moryde can cut off my existing suspension, insert tubular spacers and remount my suspension. It was strongly recommended that I save up and for $1600 replace the axles completely with the independent wheel suspension. I am probably going to go that route but need to check if that can only be done out in Goshen IN or if it can be done elsewhere, closer to home.

Interim partial solutions
1. I have room to lower the whole hitch on my rails one notch. Hesitate to do that as there have been a couple of times where getting into or out of campsites and fuel stations the back of my bed side walls have come close to "touching" the underside of the bedroom area. reducing that vertical clearance by putting the hitch lower in the truck bed worries me.

2. looking at the ability to partially compress the leaf springs on all four truck wheels, lowering the whole truck closer to the ground.

My monty is 2000 lbs under the gvwr for the trailer so I am not sure if I am over loading the rear trailer axle or not but am very close to it if not over.

This are my "challanges" using a 2500 but I am not looking to change TV any time soon. I am generally pleased with the ability of the 2500 to pull the 3000RK. Coming through PA on the way back to VA from the rally there were times where I dropped to 40MPH (didn't want to run higher than 2700 rpm) but as others have said, there were plenty of 18 wheelers ahead and behind me travelling the same speed on those stretchs.

Hope this helps you understand the issues and what you need to look at as you make your decision.

Bill and Lisa Rearick
2023 Grand Design Reflection 367BHS
2020 GMC SIERRA 2500 Denali, 8 ft bed, SRW, Duramax Diesel w/10 speed Alison Transmission.
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Old 10-17-2007, 09:32 PM   #13
Montana Master
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Hesperia
Posts: 1,321
M.O.C. #7787
Hi everyone,Iam Jack and my wife is Terry. We both retired this year and promised our selfs we aren't going to get stuck indoors in front of the TV for the rest of our lifes.
We both agreed our most fun days were with the kids and friends boating and camping in our cab-over camper in our younger days.
So our first choice in mind was a class A and then we came to our sense's and realized how impractical that would be and finally decided on a 5er.
Monday we attended the Pomona show and low and behold we came away from that show owning a Montana 3400RL. We hope we got a good deal and I can't tell you how excited we both are. They told us it would be ready by the end of this month.
Iam praying I choosed the right TV which we purchased last Sept.
Iam open for any suggestions and comments
Tow Vehicle: 2007 GMC 1 ton Crewcab Dually D/A.
Hitch: Drawtite Sig.Series 18K
Iam looking forward to making new friends and reading what experience Montana owners have to say.
Jack and Terry with Labs Maggie & Rose
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Old 10-20-2007, 05:24 AM   #14
New Member
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Edgewater
Posts: 5
M.O.C. #7797
Hey Jack and Terry, we just purchased our 3400RL at our local RV show too! Isn't it so cozy!!
I can't wait to start going places but we have to get our truck ready. I figure we will just have to be patient and wait for the spring to get here. I hope it won't seem like forever.
Have a great time with it. I know we will.
Mary Jo & Chuck from MD
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Old 10-20-2007, 05:46 AM   #15
Montana Master
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Casa Grande
Posts: 5,369
M.O.C. #6333
I towed our 3400RL from Alaska in a Chevy 2500, no problems with power or drivetrain or brakes. I did, however, add an extra leaf spring in Alaska, added air bags in California and will be changing out tires to the 265's very soon. I really like my truck and will not change it for a few years. I considered a dually, and even owned one for a while, but geting around in it did not suit me. As a fulltimer, I have no other vehicle to use. In fact, I am renting a car right now to make trips into San Francisco to see the sights.

My take on the TV is this: I have plenty of power to tow my rig. I am over Manufacturers weights. I drive no faster than 60 with rig attached. I check tire pressures daily when towing. Had brakes checked at 35k miles and will continue to check the brakes often.

I agree that the decision is yours, BUT, you asked for advice, so this is mine. To just say the decision is yours is no advice at all. We all know that it is your decision, as it was mine.

When and IF, I upgrade my truck, it will probably be a F450 or MDT. Perhaps by that time, Chevy or GM will have a 4500 or 5500 pickup style as Ford does now.

BTW. My trailer sits perfectly level when hitched....

I only offer this information to Help you make an informed decision. I am, in no way, suggesting you follow my lead. Good luck with your purchase and HAPPY MOTORING!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 10-24-2007, 04:24 AM   #16
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Elburn
Posts: 16
M.O.C. #7752
We're new, too, but welcome. We have a 3500RL and love it. We're not fulltimers yet and we pull with a 2006 2500 GMC Duramax. Zero towing problems to date (knock on head). I'll probably get one of those bounce reducer thingies next season. Some issues we had with the 3500RL. I had to remove most of the drawer latches and tighten them as our drawers in the kitchen were always open when we arrived where we were going. I also had the awning reduced by one foot and moved back on the unit so that it doesn't cover the bedroom window. Many more modifications, but that's for another forum. We're very happy with the 3500RL - that big window in back makes a giant difference. Those sliding doors back in the living room are great when you have visitors. If only the bathroom wasn't in the bedroom. Trying to figure out a mod to replace the paper curtain between the bedroom and the bathroom for more privacy when needed.
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Old 10-24-2007, 05:48 PM   #17
Trailer Trash 2
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Posts: 4,189
M.O.C. #639

Welcome and we hope you have as much fun as we are with our Monty
Pulling a 2004, 2980 RL an oldie but goodie.
Tow vehicle is a 2009 RED RAM 3500 DRW.
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Old 10-25-2007, 07:49 AM   #18
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Welcome aboard, Bob and Sallie! I see you have figured out why the Montana has been the number one seller in North America in each of the past six years.

As a point of reference, we towed a 2003 3295RK and this 2007 3400RL with a 2005 Ford F250 with nary a problem. We put 85,000 miles on that Ford before trading it a few months ago. I did put airbags on it but only because there was about an inch of sag. The sag really wasn't hurting anything but I prefer to keep things level on the truck. The only difference between the Ford 3/4 ton and 1 ton single rear wheel is the rear springs and the air bags compensated for that. We never ever experienced any kind of control problems, even in strong sidewinds, and never had any problems at all. We were (and still are) fulltime traveling all over the country.

Bob, as others noted, the 3/4 ton vs 1 ton question and the single rear wheel vs dually questions are very volatile with both sides towing Montanas very successfully. We chose the single rear wheel for the same reasons others stated. Mainly, sightseeing. A dually doesn't fit our sightseeing preferences. We are over the payload rating on this truck but we've towed somewhere on the high side of 100,000 miles with single rear wheel trucks and I've yet to see any kind of problem develop. The last set of tires (on the F250) went 70,000 miles and could have gone longer.

As others said, you will have to decide your level of comfort and go with it. I do want to say that if we were towing stock trailers it would be with a dually. Those heavy beasts moving around inside a trailer demand more rubber on the road for stability. But the Montana is no problem, even in heavy winds and we've been in some doosies.

Good luck. We think your choice of buying a Montana is an excellent one.

On edit, I just read about the issue with the drawer and cabinet latches. What I found on ours was the two pieces were, in a couple of cases, misaligned. When that happens you don't get the full spring pressure of both sides holding the latch closed. You may be able to just realign so that both sides are firmly holding the male piece in place.
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Old 10-25-2007, 02:26 PM   #19
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Just posting what works for us. We have a 2005 HD LB Chevy Diesel Duramax and have pulled it without problems. We do not have airbags, and do not have a problem with being level. The engine on the 2005 is the same for the 1 ton as the 3/4 ton.

We do not pull the 3400RL with water in the water tank, only a few extra gallons in the black and grey water tanks. We have not had any problems pulling in fact DH just puts it in the tow mode and lets the it do the work it is supposed to. We do not pull it over 65 miles and hour and check TV and trailer tires every day before leaving.

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Old 10-25-2007, 06:13 PM   #20
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We love our 2007 3500RL, for the same reasons mentioned earlier. We especially love that rear living room with the firelplace. It's also nice to have the refrigerator and the bathroom accesible without having to pull the slides out, when you stop for lunch breaks on long trips. We also pull with a 3/4 ton. I also had airbags installed for the extra support and keeping everything level.

Good luck and happy trails...
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