Despite my concerns of possible under power and possible trailer sway, the truck pulled and performed perfectly. Our trip out was in Friday noon rush hour complicated by a broken down semi in the middle lane of the Atlanta bypass freeway. So got stuck in some stop/go for a while. Outside temps were in the mid to upper 90’s. Engine temp never rose above 222 with oil temp about the same. Similar with the trans temp, not that much above it’s normal when not hauling. Roads were mild with only a few hills. Trailer was heavier than expected as the “owner” who we rented from had the front storage area packed (grills, hoses, chairs, etc). I know we were at or slight above tow limits but you really couldn’t tell based on the truck performance. The engine does rev higher when starting from a stop at a light or when ascending a hill probably due to the “tow/haul” mode switched on. Mileage averaged about 15mpg or so. (My normal w/o a load is about 26mpg). We were using a Husky Center line weight distribution hitch which I’m sure helped eliminate almost all possible trailer sway. I did hit a CAT scale once hooked up and I was slight over max on drive axle but under on the steer. If the hitch had been mine I would have made adjustments to balance it better but I didn’t want to change the “owners” set up and I was only towing a short distance. When we eventually purchase our TT I will balance out everything correctly. Hope that helps!
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Sounds like a great first trip!
The Grand Design 2400/2800BH models are well balanced - almost too well balanced. There is actually not ENOUGH weight on the tongue and so the trailer tends to be too neutral when hooked up 'dry.' The spec page on the Grand Design website shows the unloaded tongue weight on those two models to be less than 10%. So we load the basement storage area pretty heavy with chairs, grill, stove, table, all the leveling blocks, water hookups, etc. - and then place a fair amount of 'stuff' in the large storage area under the front bed. I rarely store much more than an extra chair or two under the rear bunk to keep the weight focused on the front.
I use the exact WD hitch you used on your test trip - the Husky Centerline. I have 800 lb bars on mine but for the 2800 you should move up to the 1000 lb bars. My steer axle weight when fully loaded for camping is within 40 pounds of the unloaded weight and the rear axle is about 320 pounds under max - and the rig tows great. Very well balanced, very little "truck suck" when a semi passes us and minimal sway in strong cross winds. Even though the rig tows great, for simplicity and ease of hookup I'm seriously considering the Anderson - it just makes too much sense. If my wife would ever have to hookup the trailer she would struggle greatly with the WD bars - ours are setup pretty tight and they are probably a bit much for her to lever over the cradles on the trailer tongue. The Anderson is a snap by comparison.
We've trailered ours from NE Ohio to the Smokies, Nashville, northern Michigan, Pennsylvania and all across Ohio and our overall mpg average is around 13. The ED seems happiest on the highway at 68mph though I certainly don't force that speed on hills - and I don't use the cruise so I can manage hills and transmission gears a little better.
My 2 cents...