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Old 06-15-2021, 12:49 PM   #1
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New Dutchman Voltage 3845 Owners

We are new Dutchman owners after a terrible experience with a Heartland Torque. We just purchase a new Voltage 3845 and are pulling it with a 2021 GMC 2500HD Denali. We plan on using it for not only our daughters last year of travel softball but also for holiday weekends and just short fun weekend in between.

This is our first 5th wheel, first camper over 40’ as well as a few other firsts for us. We would welcome any helpful tips from those with more experience and more miles under their belts.

We are happy to be a part of this group and hope to be able to help contribute in the future as we learn the ins and outs of our new home away from home.

Thanks,

Matt and Cindy Throgmorton
Marion, IL
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Old 06-15-2021, 10:20 PM   #2
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have you hooked it up and pulled it yet?
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Old 06-16-2021, 02:13 AM   #3
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I just checked the specs. That is listed at 14,900 lbs dry if I am correct. My 3305 is 13,300 and that is a beast for my 2500. Are you confident your truck can handle it? I am certainly not trying to be the “weight police” but I would be prepared to add another 3,000 lbs easy after toys, gear, etc., so hope your truck is up to the task. You could be pushing 18,000 pounds before you know it.

I am sure it will be a great rig.

Make sure you are familiar with your sewers connections and dump valves as they always seems to move things around. My rig has a black and grey valve in the wet bay and a third valve in the back behind the axles that was not shown to me (and left open) so my first trip out saw a huge flow of grey water as soon as I removed the sewer cap.

Also check the fuel gauge on both the outside and in the control panel area and make sure both work.

Enjoy your new rig!
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Old 06-16-2021, 02:57 AM   #4
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have you hooked it up and pulled it yet?
Supposed to take delivery on the 23rd. Will hook up for the first time then.
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Old 06-16-2021, 03:01 AM   #5
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I just checked the specs. That is listed at 14,900 lbs dry if I am correct. My 3305 is 13,300 and that is a beast for my 2500. Are you confident your truck can handle it? I am certainly not trying to be the “weight police” but I would be prepared to add another 3,000 lbs easy after toys, gear, etc., so hope your truck is up to the task. You could be pushing 18,000 pounds before you know it.

I am sure it will be a great rig.

Make sure you are familiar with your sewers connections and dump valves as they always seems to move things around. My rig has a black and grey valve in the wet bay and a third valve in the back behind the axles that was not shown to me (and left open) so my first trip out saw a huge flow of grey water as soon as I removed the sewer cap.

Also check the fuel gauge on both the outside and in the control panel area and make sure both work.

Enjoy your new rig!
Unless I’m not looking at it correctly, the 2021 Sierra 2500 with the Duramax L5P has an 18,500 cap. If I’m wrong, please let me know.
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Old 06-16-2021, 03:46 AM   #6
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I am no expert but just wanted to make sure you check.

Also check the max pin weight or tongue weight on your truck too. In some cases you can exceed your truck’s GVWR or cargo capacity well before you exceed your towing capacity.

Personally, if you are within your axle weight limits, specifically your rear axle weight rating (RAWR) that is the most important in my opinion. GVWR can be more arbitrary and not as critical. I would say RAWR and towing capacity are the most important. Others will tell you everything matters and you can’t exceed any ratings at all. You can make that call yourself.
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Old 06-16-2021, 05:05 AM   #7
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I just checked the specs... Are you confident your truck can handle it?
Since he says the intended use is for short, regional travel in the Midwest, he’ll probably be ok. Not a lot of big hills there. But if he ever heads out west… he’ll most certainly find out the first time he crests the top of a pass, and begins a curvy 8% (or greater) downhill grade on wet asphalt.
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Old 06-16-2021, 01:02 PM   #8
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I am no expert but just wanted to make sure you check.

Also check the max pin weight or tongue weight on your truck too. In some cases you can exceed your truck’s GVWR or cargo capacity well before you exceed your towing capacity.

Personally, if you are within your axle weight limits, specifically your rear axle weight rating (RAWR) that is the most important in my opinion. GVWR can be more arbitrary and not as critical. I would say RAWR and towing capacity are the most important. Others will tell you everything matters and you can’t exceed any ratings at all. You can make that call yourself.
I am DEFINITELY not the expert so I will check it out in more detail. I appreciate the advise.
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Old 06-16-2021, 01:05 PM   #9
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Since he says the intended use is for short, regional travel in the Midwest, he’ll probably be ok. Not a lot of big hills there. But if he ever heads out west… he’ll most certainly find out the first time he crests the top of a pass, and begins a curvy 8% (or greater) downhill grade on wet asphalt.
I’ll check out all the specs further. If course, the dealer says it is fine. LOL. Your correct that we are only planning on regional travel but I do want to make sure we are safe and not have to worry about overloading the truck or not having control.

Thanks for your reply.
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Old 06-19-2021, 09:12 PM   #10
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Of you have the Duramax diesel you should be ok. I think its rated at 32,000 towing with the 10 speed.
The one thing I recommend is the Firestone air bag system. We have a F350 Dually with a Voltage 3200, fully loaded 16k and change. Makes all the difference in handling, also keeps people from flashing their brights at you! Would never tow again without them.
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Old 06-19-2021, 09:21 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by mattthrogmorton View Post
We are new Dutchman owners after a terrible experience with a Heartland Torque. We just purchase a new Voltage 3845 and are pulling it with a 2021 GMC 2500HD Denali. We plan on using it for not only our daughters last year of travel softball but also for holiday weekends and just short fun weekend in between.

This is our first 5th wheel, first camper over 40’ as well as a few other firsts for us. We would welcome any helpful tips from those with more experience and more miles under their belts.

We are happy to be a part of this group and hope to be able to help contribute in the future as we learn the ins and outs of our new home away from home.

Thanks,

Matt and Cindy Throgmorton
Marion, IL
Before I added a bunch of upgrades to my 2014 Chevy 2500 HD Duramax, I pulled my 2016 Voltage E-Series model 3605 which is around 13,000 lbs dry. Your truck has more HP than mine and should be fine. My RV tongue weight was very close to max weight for my truck.

If your engine has a turbo the temperatures should not go above 1350 degrees. I ran into that limit on long stretches of grade in the road. I have since added an edge tuner, rear lifts, huge intercooler and an ethanol injection to help with the issues. Believe you may fine the way your truck is but I'd seriously think you should install air bags on the rear to keep your headlights pointing on the road ahead instead of the sky. Believe me oncoming drivers will appreciate it and not yell or flash their lights at you.
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Old 06-19-2021, 09:51 PM   #12
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445hp & 910 ft/lb torque, you can pull any 5th wheel rv I know of. sure a long wheelbase and maybe dually could handle better but you are fine, just don't get wild with it, lol. I would add air bags with independent air supply hoses to the rear and while pulling the rv run around 60# psi in the bags. with some of the highways being not the best I found the air bags smooth the ride out tremendously.
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Old 06-20-2021, 01:04 AM   #13
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445hp & 910 ft/lb torque, you can pull any 5th wheel rv I know of. sure a long wheelbase and maybe dually could handle better but you are fine, just don't get wild with it, lol. I would add air bags with independent air supply hoses to the rear and while pulling the rv run around 60# psi in the bags. with some of the highways being not the best I found the air bags smooth the ride out tremendously.
like xomerlin said it will make your towing much smoother. Without those rear bags there is almost nothing scarier than a bumpy road or pot hole to make your truck bounce as if you are on a stormy sea, That is when the trailer is controlling the truck and you won't like it at all.
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Old 06-20-2021, 01:05 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roy J View Post
Of you have the Duramax diesel you should be ok. I think its rated at 32,000 towing with the 10 speed.
Quote:
Originally Posted by llokensmi View Post
Before I added a bunch of upgrades to my 2014 Chevy 2500 HD Duramax, I pulled my 2016 Voltage E-Series model 3605 which is around 13,000 lbs dry. Your truck has more HP than mine and should be fine. My RV tongue weight was very close to max weight for my truck.
Quote:
Originally Posted by xomerlin View Post
445hp & 910 ft/lb torque, you can pull any 5th wheel rv I know of. sure a long wheelbase and maybe dually could handle better but you are fine, just don't get wild with it, lol. I would add air bags with independent air supply hoses to the rear and while pulling the rv run around 60# psi in the bags. with some of the highways being not the best I found the air bags smooth the ride out tremendously.

Ok… after reading the last 2 or 3 posts, I just gotta point out something.

Some excellent observations have been made, but the question is NOT about whether your truck can “pull” the rig. It ain’t about horsepower, and it ain’t about torque. Using Ford diesel Super Duty trucks as an example… the F-250, the F-350, and the F-450 of a certain model year ALL have the same engine. ANY of them will pull your rig just fine… no problem. They will all PULL your rig.

And while air bags on the axle will “soften” the ride comfort, they do very little (if anything) to aid the actual ability of the truck to handle high-profile, heavy towing loads.

And THAT’S the real issue… how your truck can HANDLE the load… especially on windy days, wet roads, and on steep downhill grades… and this is where the truck’s suspension, wheelbase length, axle ratios, and the question of dually rear wheels (or not) enters the equation. The various combinations of each of these options is REALLY what determines your truck’s GCWR, it’s towing capacity, and how suitable it is for your towing application.

Remember… we’re pulling toy haulers, not just simple RVs. They’re heavier than most other RVs, and then most of us put a toy or 2 in back of them, making them heavier still. And that extra “toy weight”, as I call it, is located BEHIND the rear axles… and that matters!

Take a hammer… put it on a table, and attach a string to the end of the handle with a loop knot. Now start pulling the hammer by the string around in circles on the table. As you circle faster & faster, notice how the heavy peens at the far end pull to the outside of the circle. This exactly how the laws of physics work on our toy haulers as you take curves on the highway.

Now consider that in most cases, your toy hauler weighs at least 1 ˝ times what your truck does… most of the time, even more. Example:

A normal Ford F-250 medium or long bed truck weighs about 8,000 lbs.

My Voltage 3200 weighs right at it’s GVWR of 16,500 lbs when loaded. (the triple axle rig are much heavier).

In this case, my rig would weigh over TWICE the weight of the truck. That’s DOUBLE the mass. And, the only connection between the 2 is a single-point 5th wheel king pin, meaning that the rear of the RV is free to move with the forces of physics the same as the hammer on the table above.

Now let’s put you & your family in that truck, towing your rig, on a rainy day, in windy conditions. You’ve just crested the Monarch Pass in Colorado on US-50, and are now beginning a 16-mile long twisty, curvy, downhill journey… with the first 9 miles consisting of 6% grade with no less than 25-to-30 turns (some of them with a very tight radius). Adhering to the laws of physics, on each turn, your 16,000 lb. rig is trying to continue in a straight line… pushing the rear end of you much lighter 8,000 truck (hopefully not one with a short wheelbase) towards the outside of the turn. And the only thing keeping your truck stable are the 2 tire patches of your single-wheel rear axle trying to maintain traction on the wet pavement to keep you from getting pushed over the side of the mountain.

Now… still feel your truck is safe? Still feel your family will be safe? Only you can answer that question.

Posted below are the stats for that pass. I’ve crossed it many times over the years, and many others just like it. I answered that question the first time I towed my rig over a similar pass… and that was the last time I ever did it with the F-250 I used to have. The hundreds of other passes I’ve crossed in the 8 years of owning the rig have been in the F-450 I got less than 3 weeks after that first crossing.

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Old 06-20-2021, 01:35 AM   #15
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1. Don’t trust the salesman. He wants a sale.

2. Figure the numbers for YOUR truck,not some sales brochure. Any aftermarket adds ons count.

Your truck has to be able to STOP. Being overweight could bring huge headaches if you have an accident..

No expert,just concerned.
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Old 06-20-2021, 01:37 AM   #16
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Thanks ATCguy for that info and the demonstration. I have a short bed Duramax 2500, no duel wheels. I use the tow mode, the engine braking system and drive slow in the situations you mentioned. After reading your post I'm going to drive slower now.
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Old 06-20-2021, 04:24 PM   #17
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Also, my trailer brakes were terrible from the factory. I assumed it was my truck because “how could a brand new 5th wheel stop so poorly?” I had the Ram dealer tell me the controller was fine at least twice. Eventually I had the brakes checked by a good experienced trailer repair guy and the factory drums and pads all replaced and correctly adjusted.

Now it stops great and as the repair guy told me “a proper setup allows the trailer brakes to stop the trailer and the truck brakes to stop the truck—no more, no less.” If your dually is stopping the truck that is not correct and if the trailer is slowing the truck that is bad too.

Check your trailer brakes!
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Old 06-20-2021, 04:40 PM   #18
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I had the wheels removed and repacked and in the case of one of the wheels, had to be replaced because the factory overgreased them. I have heard of some being undergreased and some over. Best to have someone pull all the wheels and repack the bearings correctly, you will not need to do it ever again unless you wear out the brakes.
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