How much can my truck tow? That is a good question since the truck manufacturers do not make this readily apparent to the buyer. Let's use a Ford F250 diesel with automatic transmission as an example of the tow vehicle. Ford says that it can tow 12,500 lbs with conventional towing and 15,500 with 5th-wheel towing. The factory tow bar hitch that Ford provides on the truck says 6,000 lbs weight carrying and 12,000 lbs weight distribution max loads. The F250 is rated at 23,000 lbs gross combined weight rating (GCWR) and it weighs about 7500 lbs with driver and canopy and trailer equipment in the bed. So, that leaves us with the 15,500 weight carrying capacity.
So, you remove the factory tow bar hitch and replace it with a Putnam XDR Class 5 hitch with a 15,000 lbs weight carrying and 16,000 weight distribution rating. Then you purchase a heavy duty trunnion weight distribution system rated at 15,000 and weight distribution shank and you are much improved for towing your boat.
Now, let's say that our boat weighs a nominal 9,000 lbs with the engines. We have to add our 270 gallons of fuel (at 6.3 lbs/gal) which equals 1700 lbs. We also want to add the weight of the fresh water onboard, 35 times 8.3 lbs/gal which equals 290 lbs. We also add a minimum of 10% of the boat weight for equipment which would be 900 lbs. The trailer might weigh an optimistic 3000 lbs if we don't add a lot of options. So our total for towed weight is 14,890 lbs and we are legal. We could be better in capability if the boat weighed a little less, but very few people ever weigh their boats, because sometimes it is better not to know. When you apply and receive a oversize permit from the State, you will have to weigh your truck and trailer at the Weigh Station and you might get a surprise.
By the way, weight distribution systems really add a lot of stability to pulling a heavy load, like a boat.
On Order: 30 x 10.5 GC with twin Suzuki DF300's.