View Full Version : A few concerns/objections for prospective new owner

09-16-2006, 03:07 PM
We are seriously considering getting a used Trailmanor if we find the right one. Probably a 3023. I really like the Trailmanor product. It looks solid and the weight and low towing profile really appeal to us. There are a few objections/concerns that I have which may have been discussed here but I would like to get additional feedback on. Our main use will be as a fishing trip trailer in the mountain states – mainly Colorado - for up to 10 days at a stretch. I'll be towing with my GMC Sierra pickup.

Axle - I see talk about upgraded axles. Do I need this? And what is the benefit?

Fridge – Yes, we know its small. Wife is a gourmet cook and is looking forward to preparing terrific meals in a travel trailer. She’s thinking of writing a book on the subject after a few years and some feedback from others. What additional cooling arrangements does everyone use? Remember, we'll be staying in one place for a week at a time. I would like to avoid having to replace ice very often.

Toilet - I don't mind using the campground facilities for #2 if required and probably will unless its inconvenient, middle of the night, or its pouring down rain. However some campgrounds we plan to use will have no facilities. I just hate the idea of a smelly john with only a very limited #2 capacity. I see the toilet in the Trailmanors as its major drawback. It is what it is – designed for a few days. I would like to have a toilet that we can use for a week before requiring a trip to the dump. Any good alternatives here? I don't mind replacing the whole thing if necessary.

Battery - I suppose everyone has a spare? Or two? Yes or no? What about chargers or generators.

Stability - a single axle does concern me. I realize that anti sway technology has come a long ways over the years. Make me feel better about it. Also has anyone experienced a flat tire on their Trailmanor at 70mph? How did everything handle?

09-16-2006, 03:56 PM
Referring to the cooking... We have a Cobb, like some of the others here on the forum. Last week we used it to cook a turkey breast, it turned out really good. I wouldn't recommend using the drippings for gravy like we did, it tasted like smoke.

We use a small refrigerator that we set outside on a table. We keep mostly our drinks and some frozen stuff in that one. If we take cheese we shred it first and lay it flat in a baggie. We also put the meat in a baggie and lay it flat as possible. We take frozen hash browns and do the same with those. If I take spaghetti sauce I make it first at home then freeze it. The one thing I have the hardest time with is lettuce, it always gets frozen. Both our refers work pretty good, even in hot weather.

We went camping at a place where there were no sewer hook ups, and the weather was very hot. We were able to get five days out of our toilet with 2 adults and 2 children with minimal use for the solid stuff, and throwing a lot of toilet paper in a lined, covered, trash can we keep in the bathroom. Of course we had to empty the trash quite often. We also used the camp bathrooms during the day if possible. Because it was hot the toilet was getting a little smelly, but it stayed contained in the toilet if the lid was closed. We always try to go where there are full hookups because we're not really fond of not being able to dump the toilet.

09-16-2006, 05:22 PM
I don't have as much experience as others on this site but I'll give a little input on what I do know.

I towed my 2720 from the bottom of Texas to the middle of Indiana in varying weather conditions on various roads with a rather small SUV (Nissan X-Terra). I have a Reese WDH with a friction sway control set-up. I took the sway control off after day 1 because you can't back up with it. I had absolutely no sway problems whatsoever even with my narrow wheelbase.

I guess I'm easy to please but I think the toilet is an upside for such an easy to use trailer. In extremely hot Texas conditions I had no odor to worry about as long as the lid was down. When the lid was pulled up the smell was basically very chemically.

09-16-2006, 11:29 PM
I and several others that I know of use the Coleman type coolers that can be plugged into your car's cigarette lighter. Mine comes with a power supply that can be plugged into a 115 volt source also. I mostly keep cold drinks in there as well as snacks for the road and it goes in the backseat of the car while on the road. It pays also to keep things such as lettuce and tomatoes in there because as was previously mentioned they might tend to freeze in the TM refrigerator.

While I mostly camp in full-service campgrounds I do have two 12 V batteries hooked in parallel. I don't know that I'll ever need that extra capacity but I like to have it just in case. (And the marine deep cycle battery was given to me by my son who just happened to have a spare from a boat he had recently sold).

The anti-sway is a non-factor with TMs. With the low-profile and positioning of the axle sway does not occur. I have not experienced a blowout and hope I never do. I'm sure you'll hear it from a lot of others but I'll mention it here anyway, the maximum speed the tires are rated for is 65 mph, and only then with proper inflation.

09-17-2006, 07:50 AM
If you are camped for more than about 4 days with no hookups and the only toilet that is available is the TM then you may have a capacity problem.

We are out and about most of the day sight seeing and have never had a problem for 4 days.

We are planing our first full week trip in a couple of weeks. We will be staying 2 or 3 nights at each campsite so i will just dump the tanks every time we move.

Some people use a blue tote. This is a holding tank on wheels that allows you to dump the TM tanks into the blue tote and then dump the blue tote into the local rvdump. It allows you to avoid moving the TM to the rvdump station at the campground. I have never used one so I can not comment on how well that works out.

We also use a Coleman 12/120 volt cooler. It doesn't get my drinks very cold, but it works well for lunchmeat, chees, eggs, lettuce etc. If the kids are with us and we have hookups then we tae it. We also take it to use in the TV whild sight seeing. Nothing beats ice cold beer, so I just buy the ice.

09-17-2006, 09:14 AM
Nothing beats ice cold beer, so I just buy the ice.
Amen to that!!:new_all_c

Yep, the plug in Coleman for food and a 6 day cooler full of ice and Sam Adams sounds like the best idea. I suppose can live with using a blue tote for the toilet. If capacity becomes an issue I can always buy a second blue tote.

Any more feedback on blowouts and axle upgrades?

Anybody use solar on their batteries? How has it worked out?

09-17-2006, 10:12 AM
oktx77: there is a separate section dedicated to solar in the forums.
Seems that if you want to rely fully on solar, you'll need 150+ watts of solar panels. If you only need to supplement and extend battery use (but not necessisarily fill 'em up full each day), one 80 watt panel may do it adequately.

09-17-2006, 03:00 PM
Hi... When we were coming back from our Labor Day trip a few weeks ago, we experienced a blowout. We were not traveling over 65 mph, the tires were properly inflated and in good shape, but it still happened. I'm happy to report that even though the tire completely shredded, we never even felt it happen, no trailer sway or anything. We heard a "pop" like we ran over something, and then the people in the car next to us motioned to the trailer, so we knew something was wrong. I don't know if that was due to the fact that we tow with a truck that has the capacity to pull the weight of 4 TM's, but we didn't feel a thing. We did learn a valuable lesson, however, as my hubby was helping the AAA guy change the tire (we didn't have a trailer jack and the truck jack was too big... guess what we're buying for our next trip?). They couldn't change the tire without unfolding our TM. This was unsettling as we were on the side of the highway right near a very busy turnoff with a bunch of traffic whizzing by at very high speeds. After they figured that out, everything went quickly and we were back on the road.

I can't help you with the other stuff, as we've only had our used '02 3023 since May, and have only gone on short trips. I can tell you that we're very happy with our TM and can't wait to take it out for more fun trips next summer.

I hope the blowout information helps. If you have any other questions about our experience, let me know.

'02 3023 and '99 Ford F250 (Superduty Powerstroke)

09-17-2006, 03:13 PM
The tires on TM's and other trailers are not designed for prolonged high speed towing...that is over 60 mph. 65 is the top recommended towing speed....
Your info APPEARS to be out of date, Goodyear does now allow for higher speeds at higher PSI (up to 10 PSI over the stamped max on the sidewall):

But you've experienced tire blow-out, I haven't. And I have the big Goodyears on the big axle-- 2619 and 2720 models on the standard 14" wheels and tires are running real close to the max load of the "C"-rated tires, I'd be a bit reticent about cranking them up to 60 PSI and driving fast when they're loaded heavily.

I was VERY concerned about the standard 2619/2720 models being built to ride near the limit of the tires all the time, so I ordered my 2619 specially-built with the big axle, big wheels, and far more capable "D"-rated 15" tires.

I'd NEVER recommend doing the "high speed, over-the-sidewal-spec PSI" trick in hot weather, on hot pavement, on the 14" tires. Even if Goodyear says it's OK, I don't like the idea at all.
- - - - -

I think that one of us, a 2720 owner, has "upgraded" to big wheels and tires onto the standard (3500 lb) Dexter axle, and feels that it was successful. I know that RockyMntRay was planning to send his 2720 back to the factory for a full upgrade (axle and everything, to be just like my 2619), but recently needed to cancel his appt. IIRC, UtahSue had the factory build her TM with the 5000 lb axle, just like I did.

With the really strong tires, we have to reduce the air pressure a lot to avoid excessive bouncing and shaking. Goodyear provides tables for doing this, I read off the table and then add 5-10 PSI, usually ending up at about 45-50. (The tires are capable of 65 PSI.) I drive pretty quickly in NV, where Trailers and OTR Trucks are allowed to go at the full posted speed. (In CA, the law says we've got to stay much slower.) So basically, I've always followed the new PDF rules: I have a few extra PSI, less than 10, and drive a few MPH above 65 when road and weather conditions are suitable.

Anyone looking for more on this particular subject can Use "search" to find Threads and Posts about 15" wheels and tires on small TM models, there have been lots of them

09-17-2006, 06:46 PM
already comes with the "big" axle, there is no "upgrade" on this model.

09-17-2006, 08:04 PM
already comes with the "big" axle, there is no "upgrade" on this model.

Thanks for clearing that up. I wasn't sure whether there was an axle upgrade on the larger models or not. So far, sounds like things should stay pretty stable in a blowout situation as long as you aren't driving like a complete maniac.

Talked to a couple of my fishing buddies and told them I was considering a purchase of a Trailmanor. I think they're more excited about it than I am. They volunteered to pay all fuel expenses if they could come along on the maiden voyage!