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Old 02-29-2008, 08:30 AM   #1
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I am currently looking at a 2005 38J adventurer that has the Chevy 8.1 Workhorse chassis. I live in TN and need to have the power to negotiate streep grades. My toad is a 2005 Ford Explorer 4X4 V8 and weighs in at around 4200lb (curb weight). I only pack a cooler and other light weight items in the Explorer so I'm not adding alot of extra weight. I'm hoping the calculated tow limit will be 4800-5000lb on the coach. I did see a couple of posts that make me believe the tow capacity might closer to 3000-3200lb (even though the coach has a 5000lb class hitch. Any help would be greatly appreciated, as I love this coach!!

Currently have 2004 30' Minnie Winnie Ford V10
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Old 02-29-2008, 08:30 AM   #2
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I am currently looking at a 2005 38J adventurer that has the Chevy 8.1 Workhorse chassis. I live in TN and need to have the power to negotiate streep grades. My toad is a 2005 Ford Explorer 4X4 V8 and weighs in at around 4200lb (curb weight). I only pack a cooler and other light weight items in the Explorer so I'm not adding alot of extra weight. I'm hoping the calculated tow limit will be 4800-5000lb on the coach. I did see a couple of posts that make me believe the tow capacity might closer to 3000-3200lb (even though the coach has a 5000lb class hitch. Any help would be greatly appreciated, as I love this coach!!

Currently have 2004 30' Minnie Winnie Ford V10
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Old 02-29-2008, 09:57 AM   #3
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MBiancardi,
First off, welcome to the forum. This forum is a fountain of information for owners and wannabe owners. Winnebago/Itasca has a website that has the brochures for the past model year coaches http://www.winnebagoind.com/products/previous-models/. I think that your coach has a 5000# capacity. I pull a 4100# jeep behind my Adventurer 35U (Ford F53 V-10 with less Hp than the WH engine has)and have no problems. You can use the link to go to the site and look up the year and model coach you are interested in and near the tail end of the brochure the specs will be listed.
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Old 02-29-2008, 12:19 PM   #4
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We have the 38T and tow a Nissan Frontier that weighs in dry at 4100lbs +/-. Overall the ride is fine with this weight and the RV pulls it with no problems. Going up a steep hill obviously takes extra effort but that is normal. I do notice a big difference though when I do not have the toad attached!

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Old 02-29-2008, 02:40 PM   #5
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The W24 chassis is rated to tow 6000#s. The 2" receiver hitch on the 38J is rated to tow 5000#s.

-Tom
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Old 02-29-2008, 03:33 PM   #6
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Like Tom said, you're rated for 6000lbs but limited to 5000lbs because of hitch.
If your toad has the neutral tow switch is <5000lbs and total combined weight is <30,000lbs you're good to go four wheels down.

If you get the 8.1 I'd recommend you consider joining the Workhorse Chassis Motorhome Club (WCMC).

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Old 02-29-2008, 04:36 PM   #7
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OK, here's what I found out. The coach is rated at GVWR - 22,000 and GCWR - 24,000. He tells me the coach wieghs in at 19,404 Dry/empty no fuel, water etc.). If I understand correctly, the coach's maximum loaded weight is 22,000lb. That leaves the difference between 22K and 24K which is 2000lb. I know that it has the 5K hitch, but that doesn't mean the coach is rated at 5K towing capacity. Maybe I'm looking at this all wrong, I just need someone to help me interpret the numbers (:
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Old 02-29-2008, 06:46 PM   #8
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MBiancardi,
The way I read the Winnebago data sheet is that the 38J on a Workhorse chassis has a GCWR of 30,000 lbs and a GVWR of 24,000 lbs. This should allow you to tow your Explorer without problem. The Explorer is a little heavier than most of us want to tow, but the 38J has the capacity to do so.
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Old 03-01-2008, 03:33 AM   #9
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Actually the owner read the weight sticker on the coch and it is rated at GCWR of 24,000 and not 30,000. I'm not sure what the difference is between the two chassis but obviously there is the 2 ratings on the 38J with the 8.1 Workhorse. It may have something to do with suspension options or some other upgrade I'm not seeing. It also may depend on how the coach is configured, number of slides, appliances, furniture etc. I'm still confused as to why there are 2 ratings. All I know is his coach is the GCWR of 24,000 based on how it is labled from the factory. I guess I'm going to have to pass on buying it, as I like a little extra weight limit to be on the safe side.
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Old 03-01-2008, 03:33 AM   #10
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MBiancardi - You are interpreting the numbers correctly. It's the numbers that are wrong. Who is giving you the numbers? If you have access to the coach, look at the sticker in the bedroom closet. It will list the GVWR & GCWR. I think the numbers are also posted near the driver's seat, but the one in the closet gives more info, like empty weight. If you can't look for yourself, ask whoever is giving you these questionable numbers to verify them on the sticker.

The 38J was new for '05 and so was the W24 chassis that the other posters are referring to (24K GV & 30K GC). That's the only chassis that Winnie shows the '05 38J being built on. It might be possible that a very early '05 38J was built on a W22 chassis. I really doubt that though. Even if that were the case, the W22 chassis has a GCWR of 26,000#. That gives you 4000#, and if you load the MH to 21800# or less, you have your 4200# capacity.
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Old 03-01-2008, 03:41 AM   #11
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MBiancardi - I see you posted at the same time I did and the numbers are from the owner. I don't know how he could confuse the numbers, but there are no options that change the numbers. My only suggestion would be to get the chassis serial number and call Workhorse or get the Winnie serial number and call Winnie. One or both of them should be able to straighten this out. Although, if the owner is that confused, maybe you don't want to buy from him anyway....
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Old 03-01-2008, 05:03 AM   #12
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The GVWR is 24,000#.

The GCWR is 30,000#.

The chassis can tow 6000# but the 2" hitch receiver is rated for 5000#.

See my 2005 W24 Motor Home Weight Information label below.

-Tom

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Old 03-01-2008, 05:08 AM   #13
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by MBiancardi:
Actually the owner read the weight sticker on the coch and it is rated at GCWR of 24,000 and not 30,000. I'm not sure what the difference is between the two chassis but obviously there is the 2 ratings on the 38J with the 8.1 Workhorse. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

The 2005 38J only came on one chassis and that was the Workhorse W24 with 30,000# GVWR and a 24,000# GCWR.

For definitions of GCWR and GVWR see the label I posted in the previous post.

-Tom
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Old 03-01-2008, 03:44 PM   #14
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According to 05 brochure the 38J is only listed with the W24 (24,000 GVWR and 26,000 GCWR).The other floorplans had the GVWR/GCWR available as 22,000/26,000 or 24,000/30,000.

If you were told it is a GVWR of 22,000 and a GCWR of 24,000 I think they misread the brochure. There is a line that shows 22,000/24,000 but that line is for the 2 GVWR options. If you actually saw those on the sticker, I'm stumped?
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Old 03-01-2008, 04:04 PM   #15
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I am driving a 38J towing a 2005 CRV and have been out west up and down the coast without any problems in the mountains. The real steep grades I do slow down but nothing I consider serious or unusual for gas. We also like the floor plan and the only problems have been roof seal and the seals on the therm pane windows over both driver and passenger sides. Both problems have been discussed as reoccuring on some Winnie products. Still haven't seen anything better in the price range
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Old 03-06-2008, 10:21 AM   #16
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I'm towing a Tahoe with our 38J with no problem.

I do suspect the slurping noise I hear is the extra gasoline being sucked up.

You'll love the 38J layout.
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