Power Wagon Towing - real life experience

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Ramv

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Yeah mileage is not good. I get 5-6 with my truck vs 7-8 with my girlfriends Duramax. Good thing with the PW is I also have spare fuel for the side by side and generators. The diesel is more of nuisance
 
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62Blazer

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Did about a 5 hour round trip pulling the 28' enclosed trailer shown in the first post. Same load. Travelling west bound with up to 20 mph gusts. Again, pulled 5th gear most of the time and occassionally would drop down to 4th. Did hit 3rd once or twice but that was when switching lanes and accelerating while going up a small grade on the freeway. Got about 8 mpg again (hand calculated). For comparison, a completely stock Ram 2500 pulling a longer and heavier trailer got about 9.6 mpg (not sure if that was hand calculated or off the display). We did take it easy at around 65 mph.
40 PSI in the rear 37's and 30 PSI in the air bags, no WDH or sway control. Absolutely no signs of trailer sway or any other weird feelings. *I will always recommend a WDH, but did not have a shank with enough drop for this trailer. If I spent more time on the freeway at higher speeds I would invest the money.
 
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62Blazer

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Update on temps. Trans stayed right at 170 F the whole time. First leg of the trip the outside temp was in the 70's. Engine and oil temps were about 208 consistent the entire time. These are the same temps I see when running empty down the freeway.
 

Udy2554

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Hauling my LS3930 with backhoe, York rake, Brush hog, etc!

I’m running long grades in both directions! @18 miles between both properties! image.jpgIMG_9317.jpeg
 

Nickx86

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Since I constantly see posts asking how a Power Wagon tows here are some real-world experiences if people are searching for information about it.
2016 Power Wagon, 1.5" Thuren front springs w/ Fox 2.0 shocks, 1" rear coil spacers and stock shocks, Airlifter 5000 air bags, 37x13.50R17 Ridge Grapplers on 17x9 wheels. So yes, a lifted PW on 37's....... Previous truck for comparison was a Chevy 2500HD crew cab shortbed with the gas 6.0L, auto, 4.10 rear axle, stock suspension with slightly larger tires (33's, basically the same size as stock PW).

Trailer 1 - small 6x12 single axle pulling a SxS so total weight is maybe 3,000 lbs. Obviously not an issue in general. Was surprised the first time on the freeway at 70+mph you could feel just a tiny bit of sway. Looked out the mirror and could see some minor trailer sway...nothing major, but you could feel it in the truck. Pulled the SxS as far forward as possible (maybe another 8") and it was fine and never noticed this with the Chevy even with less tongue weight. Again, not big deal but just the fact it was noticed. I've pulled this load for thousands of miles on the freeway.

Trailer 2 - 28' enclosed trailer, 9,900 lb. GVW and is around 4,500 lb. empty. Fully loaded would estimate around 7,000 lb. with 1,000 lb. tongue load (have a hitch with scales on it). 30 lbs. in the air bags and rear tires at 45 PSI (when empty run 38 PSI) it tows perfect. 65-70 mph on the freeway, even with 20 mph gust crosswinds, were cruise control and one hand on the steering wheel. With no air in the bags it has a decent amount of squat, but not too much squat. With 30 lbs. in the bags the rear suspension feels really planted and solid with no bouncing on expansion joints, but doesn't feel harsh. Did not have WD hooked up.

View attachment 529797

Trailer 3 - 26' enclosed trailer, 7,000 lb. GVW and around 4,000 lb. empty. Probably only 6,000 lb. but improperly loaded with too much tongue weight. Hitch scales said 1,300 lbs. Caused excessive squat. While I didn't notice it, there were witness marks where the rear bump stops had just touched the axle pads. Keep in mind I have 1" spacers so the bump stops are 1" further away from the pads versus stock. I would not drive this down the freeway as-is but the 2 mile trip was fine. Don't have a built-in air compressor for the bags so they were not inflated at all. This picture makes is look worse than it really was because of the angle, but it was too much squat.
View attachment 529798

Overall on tongue weight:
The PW can handle around 800 lbs. on stock springs with what I would consider normal and reasonable squat.
1,000 lbs. of tongue weight is "okay" and not excessive squat, but the PW really could use a little assistance. 30 PSI in air bags (rated up to 100 PSI) was good.
1,300 lbs. of tongue weight is just too much for the factory suspension. While it didn't feel bad or anything towing a short distance and slower speeds, and would probably be fine on the freeway, it's really too much. You should have either air bags and/or WD hitch
I’ve notice w the rear coils over traditional leaf springs is that you definitely need to have little bit more tongue weight on the hitch to keep that trailer sway down. It’s probably due to the design of the rear suspension but otherwise no problems with them and great write up
 

MantaRay67

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I've only added Timbren Bump Stops to address the squat and I tow a 6000 lbs 26' travel trailer (~7000 lbs. loaded & wet). The PW Drivetrain tows like there's nothing there. With the 37's on factory 4.10 gears (5.13 recommended for 37s) I still get pretty bad mileage with 10 around town and 8.5 towing.

I didn't buy the "Beast" to worry about good gas mileage. I bought it to replace my Landcruiser (that had difficulty towing) with something that could tow whatever I want and still be off-road capable.
20220511_164820 (Sm.5).jpg
 

r56ranch

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18 PW

I frequently tow a bass boat on a tandem axle trailer. Occasionally tow a 4 horse bumper pull tandem axle with 2 horses. Ive blown 2 transmissions and one engine so far.
 
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62Blazer

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I frequently tow a bass boat on a tandem axle trailer. Occasionally tow a 4 horse bumper pull tandem axle with 2 horses. Ive blown 2 transmissions and one engine so far.
Definitely some bad luck going on! Though just to clarify for other people skimming through this thread that those issues are not specific to the Power Wagon at all, but rather any Ram 2500 as they shared the same engine and transmission.
 
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