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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all,


To all of you who wonder how the MDX will pull a full size travel trailer, I will be able to report right after Thanksgiving. 2010 X with Tech, self installed hitch, went well in about 45 minuets. Had to drop exhaust but only had to remove one heat shield. Make sure you properly torque the bolts! Still trying to decide if to order the Acura wire harness or do a hard wire for the 7 way.

Empty weight on the trailer is 3400 LBS. Loaded should be right around 4100 LBS with minimal water. Will be using weight distribution hitch with sway control.

Will update with more info as the trip is close. Colorado to Arizona, to So Cal and home.

Any tips would be welcome!


Momo
 

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Keep the speed down and your awareness up. Be ready for heavy cross wind, especially in the mountains. Mount the brake controller somewhere close in case you need to get on the trailer brakes to stop a sway. There's a reason you see so many accidents with bumper pullers.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you Skinny 2 for the tips!

I have decided to order the factory harness, should be here soon. I will report on how install goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Update.....


Received factory 7 way harness from OEMACURAPARTS.COM Quick and easy purchase, good service.


Installed harness, no instructions, found a mounting bolt nutsert after removing cargo tray where jack tools are. Everything was plug and play, ran harness down though holes that had plastic plugs in them. Mounted 7 way connector to hitch bracket on aftermarket hitch. I had to make a bracket because the harness was to short to reach.

Mounted brake control off of a custom bracket to center tunnel side, right by OBD port. I did not want to drill holes in lower dash panel. If I ever remove brake control all I have to do is remove bracket screws and rub the carpet to hide holes.

Will update again when I get trailer hooked up....

Momo.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Update...

Hooked up trailer with an E-2 weight distribution and sway. Have test pulled about 100 miles. Tows straight and true, stops well. I need mirror extensions.

Power is okay, towed up a steep hill, much steeper than any highway would be, at about 5500 ft elevation, 40 MPH.

Will know more when I get to the mountains of southern Colorado and Arizona.

Momo.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Update....


We will be leaving Saturday morning to miss a snow storm that is supposed to hit higher elevations along the Colorado Rockies.

We are taking two dogs, I made a great pet barrier from some wire shelving, put a extendable rod to fit inside the cargo cover pockets on each side of the cargo area just behind second row. Zip tied it all together and viola, great pet barrier, fits perfect, and cheap!

Also made a pet ramp to allow the older dog to get into the back without jumping. Made a support using the factory tow hook to support the right end of an aluminum tube and a bracket attached to the receiver hitch. The ramp rest on the tube, the dog now can have an easy climb into the back.

Will post pix later of all.

Found a set of mirror extensions at a thrift shop, modified them, will report on how they fit and perform.

Thanks for reading.

Momo
 

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Update....


We will be leaving Saturday morning to miss a snow storm that is supposed to hit higher elevations along the Colorado Rockies.

We are taking two dogs, I made a great pet barrier from some wire shelving, put a extendable rod to fit inside the cargo cover pockets on each side of the cargo area just behind second row. Zip tied it all together and viola, great pet barrier, fits perfect, and cheap!

Also made a pet ramp to allow the older dog to get into the back without jumping. Made a support using the factory tow hook to support the right end of an aluminum tube and a bracket attached to the receiver hitch. The ramp rest on the tube, the dog now can have an easy climb into the back.

Will post pix later of all.

Found a set of mirror extensions at a thrift shop, modified them, will report on how they fit and perform.

Thanks for reading.

Momo


Any pictures of the trailer and X together?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hello all!

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving.

Made it back from a great vacation on Sunday afternoon.

I'll give as much information as possible so others can get an idea of how towing a big trailer behind a relatively short wheelbase SUV feels like and if they feel like it would work for them.

Lets preface this with I have towed trailers many thousands of miles, maybe even over 100K worth. Just not a combo like this one for any distance.

Before leaving, I readjusted the E-2 hitch, as the trailer was a little low in the front and MDX was a little low in the back. most of the gear and clothing was loaded in the front. Never tow without proper tongue weight, sway is a bad thing. Loaded up Saturday, two adults, teenage boy, two dogs weighing 110 LBS, little else in the X other than blankets.

Filled up fuel, all mpg numbers are from the info center, not calculated from fuel/miles. First 180 miles went by quickly, mpg reading around 12.5 . Speed was on average around 55. Fairly level from Loveland to Walsenburg CO. Filled up, went West toward Pagosa Springs, mpg down to 11, some steep grades in there, slowest we went was about 45 MPH. Used sport mode in transmission almost entire trip, 3rd gear on steep grades, tried and did well keeping RPMs below 3500, engine got a little noisy above 3500. Lots of intake air growl, valve train noise went up too. I am assuming VTEC was kicking in. If speed an RPM ever would start dropping, i would slow down and drop gear. I almost always drive by cruise control , cruise worked great entire trip.

Fuel economy reading rarely dropped below 10, if it did, it was up hill, and when on the other side of a hill it would go back up.

To be continued....
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Sorry, most of this story has nothing to do with the X and pulling, so you can skip if you like.....

... Pulled into Pagosa Springs, tried to find a place to stop for the night, it is about midnight. We often stay at Walmart, usually can stay there overnight. Not this one, was making some tight turns to get through parking lots and turn around. Pulled out on to the main road to see if we could find another place to stop. Small dog, a black Border Collie named Krunchie Noodle, was jumping around, looked back and saw flashes of light through the back window reflecting on the trailer. That is odd I thought. Kept looking back, flashes were brighter. I think there is a fire. I pull over, get out, look at the area where the flashing was, my 7 way cord is on fire. Oh my. I put the fire out before I pulled the 7 way out of the X connector. I disconnect the battery on the trailer, wires and insulation are charred bad. Whew, disaster averted.

Very tired but a little excited about the fire, we pull into a parking lot at an abandoned hotel, think that maybe we could park here without any issues. Not the case, a police truck pulls in, spotlight in my face. Explained what was going on, they refused to let us stay there. But we have no lights on the trailer, there was a short, then a fire. Officer reply, "I know we saw it". "Great, is there a place where we can park overnight so I can fix my trailer wiring?" "Yes, at the end of town at the diner" he says. "I have no lights." I reply. "We will escort you down there." We get back in the X, I head to the end of town, find the parking lot, we settle in for a cold night.

Got up in the morning, disconnected the trailer, drove to Walmart, bought some electrical connectors, a crimp tool, electrical tape and some razor blades. Drove back to the trailer, tried to cut the vinyl insulation with a razor blade, almost would not cut.

It was about 20 degrees. It was a lot colder over Wolf Creek Pass though. The vinyl insulation had gotten so cold that when we made the tight turns, it had cracked and allowed the wires to short after our tight turns in the parking lot.

Finally had cord repaired and back on the road. Arrived at the Grand Canyon at about 8 P.M., we stopped to stretch at an overlook at the rim. Very dark, no light anywhere, we look down, nothing but black, even with the flashlight on. Very cool. Got a campsite, stayed comfortable overnight till the dog started to bark at dawn. Great exploring the South Rim of the Canyon, we hiked a ways in, stared to talk to a fellow hiker, he told us someone had fallen off the trail and down quite a ways, a helicopter had to get him out. Also told us people die all the time, most from people taking selfies and loosing their balance. Great.

Latter in the day at one of the overlooks, there were 30 or more people the the railing, almost all of them were taking selfies. So much for enjoying the great views.

Left that night, trailer pulling fine, stopped in California desert overnight. MPG was around 11.2. Pull into Orange County Tuesday afternoon, set up camp in Huntington Beach, small campground, but just across Pacific Coast Highway from the beach. Huntington by the Sea, would recommend it to anyone.

That night had a great time in Huntington Beach Main Street, they have entertainment every Tuesday night, great food. My son loves vinyl records and CDs, stopped at a cool store in Costa Mesa. Got back into the X, started it up and noticed a funny sound coming from the power steering. Slight panic, opened up hte hood, fluid was good, no leaks, got in drove around a bit, there was an odd hesitation when I just stared to turn the wheel. Went on for half a day, then went back to normal. Why that happened I don't know.

To be continued....
 

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Sorry, most of this story has nothing to do with the X and pulling, so you can skip if you like.....

... Pulled into Pagosa Springs, tried to find a place to stop for the night, it is about midnight. We often stay at Walmart, usually can stay there overnight. Not this one, was making some tight turns to get through parking lots and turn around. Pulled out on to the main road to see if we could find another place to stop. Small dog, a black Border Collie named Krunchie Noodle, was jumping around, looked back and saw flashes of light through the back window reflecting on the trailer. That is odd I thought. Kept looking back, flashes were brighter. I think there is a fire. I pull over, get out, look at the area where the flashing was, my 7 way cord is on fire. Oh my. I put the fire out before I pulled the 7 way out of the X connector. I disconnect the battery on the trailer, wires and insulation are charred bad. Whew, disaster averted.

Very tired but a little excited about the fire, we pull into a parking lot at an abandoned hotel, think that maybe we could park here without any issues. Not the case, a police truck pulls in, spotlight in my face. Explained what was going on, they refused to let us stay there. But we have no lights on the trailer, there was a short, then a fire. Officer reply, "I know we saw it". "Great, is there a place where we can park overnight so I can fix my trailer wiring?" "Yes, at the end of town at the diner" he says. "I have no lights." I reply. "We will escort you down there." We get back in the X, I head to the end of town, find the parking lot, we settle in for a cold night.

Got up in the morning, disconnected the trailer, drove to Walmart, bought some electrical connectors, a crimp tool, electrical tape and some razor blades. Drove back to the trailer, tried to cut the vinyl insulation with a razor blade, almost would not cut.

It was about 20 degrees. It was a lot colder over Wolf Creek Pass though. The vinyl insulation had gotten so cold that when we made the tight turns, it had cracked and allowed the wires to short after our tight turns in the parking lot.

Finally had cord repaired and back on the road. Arrived at the Grand Canyon at about 8 P.M., we stopped to stretch at an overlook at the rim. Very dark, no light anywhere, we look down, nothing but black, even with the flashlight on. Very cool. Got a campsite, stayed comfortable overnight till the dog started to bark at dawn. Great exploring the South Rim of the Canyon, we hiked a ways in, stared to talk to a fellow hiker, he told us someone had fallen off the trail and down quite a ways, a helicopter had to get him out. Also told us people die all the time, most from people taking selfies and loosing their balance. Great.

Latter in the day at one of the overlooks, there were 30 or more people the the railing, almost all of them were taking selfies. So much for enjoying the great views.

Left that night, trailer pulling fine, stopped in California desert overnight. MPG was around 11.2. Pull into Orange County Tuesday afternoon, set up camp in Huntington Beach, small campground, but just across Pacific Coast Highway from the beach. Huntington by the Sea, would recommend it to anyone.

That night had a great time in Huntington Beach Main Street, they have entertainment every Tuesday night, great food. My son loves vinyl records and CDs, stopped at a cool store in Costa Mesa. Got back into the X, started it up and noticed a funny sound coming from the power steering. Slight panic, opened up hte hood, fluid was good, no leaks, got in drove around a bit, there was an odd hesitation when I just stared to turn the wheel. Went on for half a day, then went back to normal. Why that happened I don't know.

To be continued....


Wow that is great! As for the power steering making noise or hesitation. Just do a PS fluid flush and that is it.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Good to hear you caught the fire before it caused more damage.

That is strange the wire was not up to handling the cold.

I use to tow a popup and well into some cold weather here in Ontario and never had an issue with the wire harness.
 

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...... Had a great Thanksgiving at a friends house. Friday morning we hooked back up to the trailer as checkout was 11:00. Dropped the trailer off at friends house, went shopping for more records, found a lot at a store in Santa Ana, very friendly owner.

Headed back for home Friday night, big climb out of the LA basin on the 15 towards Vegas, rig climbed like a champ, 40 was the slowest we went up the grade. If any of you have driven that you know how steep it is. Uneventful for the rest of the trip, lots of very steep grades on the 15 to Vegas and I-70 East has many grades. Never felt like the X was struggling except for Vail pass, altitude at the top is over 10,000 feet. Slowed down to about 35 on the steepest part.

Fortunately there was very little wind. I had expected more. A Strong wind was evident going West in California, stability was good, I didn't fight too much. The E-2 sway control hitch worked great all the way, it is noisy though.

My modified mirror extensions worked great even though they were not pretty. Could not have done the trip without them.

The dog ramp worked awesome, our old but great dog Elmo was able to get into the back of the X with no problems.

Summary, the trailer is a big load on the 2010 MDX, but handled the task well. fuel economy dropped less than half towing. Not as bad as I had expected. I would have preferred a shorter trailer but the trailer we have is great. Other than having to put a new 7way pigtail on before our next trip.

Thanks for reading, more than happy to answer any questions you may have...

Momo

Fuel economy average was around 11 on the whole trip.
 

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Pictures!
 

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Thanks for this information. My brother has been using shipping from wewilltransportit.com as a mode to take his car while going on a trip. He never used travel trailer or installed hitch. But this link provided useful information, specifications/mechanisms to be applied while using travel trailer with his MDX.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Hello all,

Sorry, having problems down loading pictures from the Iphone into my work computer.

Here is a picture of the DIY dog barrier made from a Harbor Freight load bar and wire shelves. Worked great and is cheaper than the better store bought ones.

I took the feet off of the load binder, locked it in to the pockets where the cargo cover mounts in the X.
Cut the wire shelf to fit, I used zip ties to hold it all together. It kept the dogs back well.

Momo
 

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