Dodge 3500 - Advice Needed!

Asbjorn

Active Member
Location
Montrose, CO
DF5050B0-2F6E-4199-9B39-63C19B1D7D63.jpeg

I recent bought a 2005 Dodge 3500 for my DD/tow vehicle and hadn’t even considered that I’d have an issue with payload - WRONG!!! This thing is only rated for a measly 2830 pounds payload. I’ve been shopping for a cabover camper to put on it while towing around during wheeling trips. I’ve pretty much come to the conclusion that any camper with the amenities we are looking for will exceed the payload by itself, let alone the weight of passengers, luggage, etc. Then there’s the tongue weight of the trailer. UGH.

So…I’m thinking about options:

1) add heavier springs, air bags, and the highest load index tires I can find and run it. I’m concerned about liability if something were to happen and I’m over GVWR.

2) dually conversion. But, my door sticker will still show the SRW GVWR, so I may not relieve any liability issues.

3) trade/sell for a dually.

What would you do?
 

haulinshine

Active Member
The correct answer is to trade for a dually, nothing you can do will raise the legal GVWR of your truck. If you get into an accident while over you can get ticketed for over weight and if your insurance wants to they can tell you they won't pay anything for the damage to your vehicle or other vehicles involved in a crash as you were operating outside your vehicles intended weight.
 

Hickey

Premium Member
Supporting Member
The GVWR sticker doesn't change, not matter what you do the truck.

The rating system used to create the GVWR, payload, and tow ratings is kind of odd. My new truck has a payload over 4k but a tow rating of only 16k. It's a gas engine.

A crawler hauler setup could meet your needs and not exceed payload.
 

mbryson

.......a few dollars more
Supporting Member
I like that you are thinking of this. In my opinion, too many people do not.

In my opinion, having the mfg sticker and staying within those weight ratings is key to saving yourself from any potential litigation issues that could come up. Having had a similar truck, that was my exact observation with it as well. Awesome driving experience. OK to tow, not a lot of payload. (I had every problem possible those trucks have in the 40-50k I owned my 2004 truck. I hope that truck is the BEST truck imaginable to who I sold it to because I certainly paid for him to have a great truck :D)

I LOVED the engine in the 2004 truck. The rest of the truck, not so much.


I'd choose option 3 and get the right truck for your max load.
 

Asbjorn

Active Member
Location
Montrose, CO
A crawler hauler setup could meet your needs and not exceed payload.

trade out the trailer for a gooseneck long enough to fit the crawler and a small tent camper

The crawler hauler idea is out. I just sold my 32’ gooseneck I had planned to build out. We decided we didn’t want to have to 1) tow a huge gooseneck to the mountains if we wanted to camp or go on a road trip that didn’t involve wheeling, or 2) have to unload the camper from the gooseneck and onto the truck for the aforementioned activities. Having a camper that goes on the truck with the option of the flatbed trailer was our preferred alternative.
 

Asbjorn

Active Member
Location
Montrose, CO
I like that you are thinking of this. In my opinion, too many people do not.

In my opinion, having the mfg sticker and staying within those weight ratings is key to saving yourself from any potential litigation issues that could come up. Having had a similar truck, that was my exact observation with it as well. Awesome driving experience. OK to tow, not a lot of payload. (I had every problem possible those trucks have in the 40-50k I owned my 2004 truck. I hope that truck is the BEST truck imaginable to who I sold it to because I certainly paid for him to have a great truck :D)

I LOVED the engine in the 2004 truck. The rest of the truck, not so much.


I'd choose option 3 and get the right truck for your max load.
Thanks for the encouragement. I guess I’ve reached the level of maturity where I think these things through a little more. I think having a son has prompted me to be much safer. I do love the way this truck pulls, although as you mentioned, the rest of the truck is meh.

Dually is probably the answer. Or another SRW truck with a higher GVWR.
 

Asbjorn

Active Member
Location
Montrose, CO
Never in my life have I even known the payload or towing capacity of a vehicle I own.

put the camper on there and be happy.
While I have considered this (e.g. option 1), I think that in today’s world, should I get into an accident and someone get seriously hurt or killed, I’d potentially be financially and legally liable. Not sure if it’d rise to a vehicular manslaughter level, but I’d rather not find out. In my past setups, I have thrown a camper in my truck and pulled this trailer with crawler in tow without a second thought. But now that I’ve thought of it, it’s unlikely that I can convince myself to take the chance.
 

jeeper

Currently without Jeep
Location
So Jo, Ut
I just looked for fun.. My payload in my srw f350 is 3,750lb.. so I am quite surprised that the dodge is so much less.

Because I have 3.73 gears, my tow rating drops 3,000lb down to just 12,000... Which I can assure you I have exceeded about 10 times this month alone.
 

Hickey

Premium Member
Supporting Member
My neighbor has the same issue with his 2014 Dodge Ram it's a Mega cab and his Toyhauler exceeds his ratings. It's not a huge Toyhauler.

Every manufacturer releases pdf's for their truck's tow ratings. If you decide to look for a different truck, Google those tow ratings for the year you are looking at. The cab configurations and axle gearing have a lot to do with the payload and tow ratings.

Generally, a 2WD single cab with the lowest gears available will always have the highest ratings. The ads for pickup trucks will say "highest payload in its class! (4,200 lbs)" while showing a crew cab 4x4 shortbed that only has a 3,200 lbs payload rating. Crew Cabs are always a lower payload rating.
 

TRD270

Aloha’n MF
Location
SaSa Sandy
The GVWR sticker doesn't change, not matter what you do the truck.

The rating system used to create the GVWR, payload, and tow ratings is kind of odd. My new truck has a payload over 4k but a tow rating of only 16k. It's a gas engine.

A crawler hauler setup could meet your needs and not exceed payload.
FWIW I ordered same truck as Jeremy with lower gears, 4.6k payload just over 20k towing.
 

xj_nate

Doctor, economist, polical expert, poser
Location
UT
My neighbor has the same issue with his 2014 Dodge Ram it's a Mega cab and his Toyhauler exceeds his ratings. It's not a huge Toyhauler.
Yeah it's ridiculous. My Megacab diesel is rated the same as a crew cab with the 6.4 Hemi at 14,500 lbs lol riiiight.

I don't tow heavy anyways but I will gladly ignore that if needed. My same truck with a crew cab has a tow rating of 18,790. N O N S E N S E.
 

mesha

By endurance we conquer
Supporting Vendor
Location
A.F.
I have an arctic fox 990 camper and tow a car hauler behind. I switched to a dually a few years back and I like it better.

That being said I do have a Firestone airbag set up for your truck new in the box. It would be a cheap way to improve your set up while you make up your mind.
 

Asbjorn

Active Member
Location
Montrose, CO
I have an arctic fox 990 camper and tow a car hauler behind. I switched to a dually a few years back and I like it better.

That being said I do have a Firestone airbag set up for your truck new in the box. It would be a cheap way to improve your set up while you make up your mind.
I have been eyeballing those, but I’m really hesitant to do anything more with this truck. I’m fairly convinced that I need a dually, and I’m going to look at one today. That said, it will be another 3rd gen Dodge, so those airbags may still work.
 
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