Looking to tow a camper for a big family with a Toyota Sienna

Discussion in 'Camper Pre-Purchase Questions' started by mai_lin, Jun 5, 2019.

  1. mai_lin

    mai_lin New Member

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    I'm looking for a PUP for my family of 6. We have a 2014 Toyota Sienna with a tow rating for 3500. Our family weight is currently 600 lbs. but with 4 growing kids that will change and then there's gear and the camper

    Anyone know of a camper that can sleep 6 and allow us to take ourselves, our stuff AND the camper for less than 3500 lbs.?

    It seems impossible!
     
  2. Eric Webber

    Eric Webber Active Member

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    My Coleman Santa Fe might be a bit small for six but it was pulled from Montreal to South Carolina for five years by a 2010 Sienna. A bit of sag in the rear end but it never complained and was great for the passengers
     
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  3. mai_lin

    mai_lin New Member

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    Good to know! Thanks!
     
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  4. jmkay1

    jmkay1 2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah

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    The only thing I can think of is find a popup with two dinette tables. That can collapse down to a separate bed. Everyone will have a place to sleep. Another option is to get a 10' popup and use a tent for your older kids. However you may still be very limited on tongue weight.
     
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  5. billbillbillbill

    billbillbillbill Member

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    We towed 6 kids and our Fleetwood Yuma with our 2004 Sienna for the last couple of years. It was 9.5' box and with 2 in the twin bed, 1 on the dinette, and 1 in a pack and play in the entry way, it was definitely snug. If you can find a 10' box with maybe a U shaped dinette that could convert to a bed for 2 kids, you could probably find something in the 2000-2500 lb range.

    We just upgraded to truck and trailer this spring now that the Sienna has 175,000 miles and our youngest needs a bed. Floorplan of our Yuma didn't really work for 6 unfortunately.

    Good Luck!
     
  6. WrkrBee

    WrkrBee Well-Known Member

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    I never thought about putting the kids in the camper. It would have made for quieter vacation travels.
     
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  7. Fixitup

    Fixitup Active Member

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    I think you will very limited to what you can tow with the grocery getter that will accommodate 6 people. I agree with the tent for the older ones. Good luck with the hunt.
     
  8. Rusty2192

    Rusty2192 Well-Known Member

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    It depends on what you want your sleeping arrangements to be. I could sleep 6 in my tiny 8’ pup if I wanted. Both bunks and the dinette are all 48” wide (slightly smaller than full) and the full width of the pup long. A 10’ box with a similar layout would give even wider beds.

    You have a little more wiggle room on Your Sienna than you think. Toyota added plenty of room between the GCWR and the towing capacity, all SAE J2807 compliant. GCWR is 8,900 for FWD or 8,990 for AWD, so subtracting the curb weight leaves a nice buffer of people and stuff you can put in the van before eating into your towing capacity.

    If you want to know for sure, load up the family and whatever gear you think you’ll take and hit a scale. That will show for sure how much room you have on GVWR and GCWR for a pup, accounting for whatever buffer makes you comfortable.

    BE626097-B923-4568-AD6A-3B92691F58DA.jpeg
     
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  9. mai_lin

    mai_lin New Member

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    Good idea Rusty! Do you know if there is a listing of scales one could access?
     
  10. 1380ken

    1380ken Well-Known Member

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    My 1997 Starcraft Venture 2408 has a 12' box and weights less than 2000 lbs. We sleep five comfortably and could do six.
     
  11. Rusty2192

    Rusty2192 Well-Known Member

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    CAT scales are all over near major highways, usually at truck stops. I just hit one last week for the first time. Watch a few YouTube videos before going to learn how it works. I used the Weigh My Truck app, which made it even easier. It costs $11 for the first weigh and another $2 each time you may want to do it again within 24 hours.

    https://catscale.com/cat-scale-locator/

    Other options that may be free are quarries, dumps, grain scales, etc. You’d have to search around and make a few calls to find those in your area.
     
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  12. Sjm9911

    Sjm9911 Well-Known Member

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    + 1 for the tent for the older kids , it will nake life so much eaisier.
     
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  13. Ken Lane

    Ken Lane Active Member

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    Jayco has a 12' box that just a little above 2K lbs dry, and it has a low tongue weight too.
     
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  14. Tulip

    Tulip Active Member

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    we pulled our 1994 dutchman 1203 with our grand caravan with the tow package from Ontario to BC and back last year. I think the trailer is a touch under 1800 dry weight. We have 3 teens, 2 girls shared one of the bunks and our son had the couch dinette which is about a double bed. The bunks are queen/king and there is a small dinette that folds down to fit a younger child (maybe up to age 10ish - it's short but about twin size). It says it sleeps 8 but I think that's a bit of a stretch.
    My son likes to sleep in a tent if the weather is nice just for some privacy but we all fit comfortably in the pup if the weather isn't great.
     
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  15. MNTCamper

    MNTCamper Active Member

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    There are plenty of campers that will sleep 6 that you can tow with that rig. Any basic 12' box unit without a slideout would be fine. Most of those will gross out at about 2800 or 2900 (max weight). We sleep 6 in our no problem and tow all of that and 2 dogs and my kids are 15-20 YO and not small. Minivans make fine tow vehicles. Keep your gross under 3K lbs and ideally less and you will be fine.
     
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  16. mai_lin

    mai_lin New Member

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    Thank you everyone, you're making me feel much better about this! $400 for the hitch and I can start looking for a camper!
     
  17. TheBlurb

    TheBlurb New Member

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    Totally doable. I pull an 1,850lb Jayco and family of five with a Sienna. Queen and King on either end, and two dinettes that convert to beds. Lots of room for 6.
     
  18. RDWRER

    RDWRER Active Member

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    We pull a 2014 Jayco 12BS with a 2012 Toyota Sienna. We are a family of 5 and 3 of them are teenage boys (and one of them is 6’2”)! We have 2 slide out bunks, one gaucho sofa/bed, and a dinette/bed. Plus a bath/shower and small kitchen. I think our gvwr is about 2600. So it’s definitely doable!
     
  19. RDWRER

    RDWRER Active Member

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    Sorry, double post
     
  20. xvz12

    xvz12 Well-Known Member

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    If you don't mind looking for an older pup, our '84 Coleman Cape Cod sleeps 8 (if 4 are kids...lol), & the GVWR is 1995 lbs.....it's pretty modest by today's standards, but as lifelong tent campers, we REALLY like it.
     

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