No offense, but if I spend $60k on a truck... I'd be dam sure it's what I needed for a long time...
Yeah well, I hear ya. Long story short... I keep changing my mind.
I recently retired at the beginning of the year, and had planned on simply using my F-250 to pull my motorcycles in an enclosed trailer and staying in hotels during my travels. That was that plan... and it worked for about 6 weeks: right until I met up with some friends of mine down in FL who had full size RV's.
Well, after spending a few days with them... the hook was set, and before long I'd decided that I wanted to try it. After doing some research & shopping, a few months later I had an RV. I really liked a couple of the larger rigs... but since I wasn't sure I was going to completely love the RV lifestyle, AND because I knew I had to keep the total weight with one of my bikes inside under 16,000 lbs (tow rating of 15,900 on my F-250)... I bought a rig that conformed to those specs.
I knew my truck weighed about 8200 lbs... and the RV weighed a little over 13,000. My big Gold Wing motorcycle weighs 970 lbs 'wet', and I figured I'd need no more than 1,000 lbs for all of the stuff I'd load inside it (clothes, golf clubs, supplies, etc.)... for a total of guesstimate of around 15,000 lbs.
Fast forward a few months & about 14 weeks total in the RV at different places... and I found that I LOVE it, and was already considering upgrading to a larger rig. As such, I'd already been kicking around the idea of upgrading to a dually in case I did decide to purchase a larger rig at some point.
Fast forward another month while pulling my rig up to PA a few weeks ago... it occurred to me that, although I'd kept saying I was going to do it at some point, I had never actually weighed my rig since I got it. So at the next re-fuel point, I decided that I was going to a truck stop & pull across a set of the CAT scales there.
I filled the truck with diesel, and then pulled across the scales. When the lady handed me the weigh-in slip... it had the weight per axle breakdown, but the number that jumped out to me was that I'd crossed at 24,400 lbs gross weight.
At that point, I'm thinking that I'm still ok legally... but alarm bells began going off in my head. Not only because there was about 1,000 lbs somewhere that I hadn't accounted for, but also because the number "23" kept banging in my head as I rolled on down the highway.
Next fuel stop, I decide to get online and pull up the truck's towing specs from the Ford.com website... and that's when I see what had been bothering me: my truck's GCWR was only 23,500. As such, I was about 900 lbs overweight.
After I got to my campsite, and got everything set up... I began mentally re-calculating my load. Where was that extra 1,000 lbs coming from? At some point I looked over at the truck, and a few things began to click. I noticed the front brush guard I'd hung on the front... that was around 100 lbs. Then I thought about the 5th wheel hitch setup. All together, that was about another 400 lbs of iron & steel. Then I remembered the RV washer/dryer combo unit I'd installed into the rig a few weeks after I bought it (another 150 lbs or so)... and all of the little stuff like ratchet tie-downs for the bike, the portable grill, water & sewer hoses, etc that all add up.
So... to wrap things up... pulling across that set of scales solidified my decision to trade the F-250 for a dually. While I know those published numbers are purposely conservative, and that there are tolerances built in... and the fact that the truck really did handle fine as it was... for peace of mind, I just didn't want to have to worry about it.
As far as money goes... well, as they say, it's only money. I've got a decent pension, and I can always make more of it if I need to. And it's for sure that I won't be taking any of it with me to the grave, right? I'm single, my kids are grown & doing well. Yeah, I don't like being upside down anymore than anyone else... but when I decide that I want something, I usually end up getting it. Maybe not that same day, but at some point... and usually sooner rather than later.