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Old 08-20-2020, 07:02 PM   #1
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Default Questions re:towing an X139 w/lifted Mazda B4000

Good evening- I'm a new member to this forum, since I'm considering purchasing a 2014 X139 for Baja travel and wanted to learn from other members.

I have a Mazda B4000 with tow kit rated at 5000 lbs- but it was lifted a few inches by a previous owner. The truck has a V6/4L engine with good power- do I need to be concerned about this added height? Will it effect the balance/center of gravity of the trailer?

I'm thinking I may flip the axles on the trailer to lift it up for better clearance, and also to match the truck level.

Also: is the X139 weight reasonable for this truck, along with a Callen camper shell? I bought the shell used, and the company is no longer in business- so I don't know the weight. It's several hundred pounds- and actually the truck rides better with the added weight (it has very stiff suspension).

I would prefer to leave the camper on. The goal is to set up the trailer at remote camps in Baja and be able to drive the truck as needed to resupply etc.

Thanks for your thoughts on the height/weight/camper issues.
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Old 08-21-2020, 04:10 AM   #2
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I love the 139 models, and I hate to give you bad news, but I do not think that this is not going to work. First, let's assume Covid goes away. Second, let's assume that the following travel advisory goes away:

https://mx.usembassy.gov/mexico08062...do-not-travel/

I have driven through Baja a couple of times -- I speak Spanish fluently and love Mexico. Right now, I would not go there and especially would not camp in a remote unguarded place. But you may be more courageous than I am.

Now, let's deal with your questions. The height issues are not a problem -- you can easily get an adjustable hitch, or else they have lifts and drops for your receiver so that the trailer rides level, no matter the height disparity.

The tow vehicle might not safely handle both the camper shell and the trailer. Check the load sticker on the driver's side doorpost -- it'll give you the various parameters. Although you don't have the exact weight of your camper shell, use the numbers given for comparable rigs made by other companies to get a close estimate.

You always want to have a margin of safety -- if you are right at the load limit of the tow vehicle, you are risking transmission trouble and brake failure.

Lifting a 139 is done all the time -- if you have leaf springs, reinforce them. I added shocks to mine for off-pavement travel. A lift raises the center of gravity, however.

A single axle trailer, like the 139, is a little risky on bad roads -- if you get a blowout, there is no "second wheel" to keep you vertical. To counteract this problem, I am running really beefy Endurance trailer tires, Load Range D, and I watch tire inflation like a hawk.

The biggest issue is the incredibly poor quality of the roads in Baja. The main highway has many potholes, "topes," and washouts. There is no shoulder -- the ground is often a foot below the road surface. The roads leading from the highway to the beach are almost always deep sand -- you will use "four wheel low" frequently, and will have to drive at about five or ten mph due to the ditches and washes.

Hang in there, and good luck!
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Old 08-21-2020, 04:29 AM   #3
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One more thought -- upgrade the axle. The original one is 2500 lb -- I now have a 3500 lb axle.
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Old 08-24-2020, 04:38 PM   #4
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My Jeep is lifted, I just bought a hitch with a 4 inch drop and it made up the difference in height, so the trailer sits normally.
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Old 08-30-2020, 07:18 PM   #5
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I agree with ProfDant on the security issues presently south of the border. Years ago we traveled as far south as San Quintin (where the road leaves the Pacific and swings to the Gulf) and had a great time but that was in a different world. Even then we had multiple vehicles and relied on safety in numbers. Our regular runs were to Puerto Penasco (aka Rocky Point where we explored the lava flows north of town) and San Felipe, the most recent being 3-4 years ago. But alas, times have changed. No more 10 cent bakeries!
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Old 09-04-2020, 11:58 AM   #6
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I've been to mexico twice in the early 70's & only a few miles over the border.

Just my opinion, but I would never go there today. Not only are the police corrupt, the gangs and drug cartels operate with immunity.

Nope, wouldn't go there on a bet.......my opinion and position.
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Old 09-28-2020, 09:51 PM   #7
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Hey everyone- thanks for your comments & suggestions.

I bought a 2012 X139 from the original owner. I haven't taken possession of the trailer yet- I need to upgrade the electrical system on my truck (from the 4-pin to 7-pin on a 2000 Mazda B-4000) so I can connect the electric braking system. This is basically a Ford Ranger, and I've been told the Ford towing systems are generally good- but needs the updated additional connectors.

The seller is willing to deliver the trailer to my home while I get the electrical work done on the truck, so I can start evaluating some of the other work that might be needed.

Re:Mexico- I have lived in Baja, and have friends who live and work there. I plan to visit them during whale migration season before exploring other areas nearby.

As I read some of these comments, it makes me think I'll be in need of a local trailer shop. I live in San Diego, and there are many around, but any personal recommendations are welcome, or suggestions on how to evaluate a shop before having them work on the trailer.

Thanks again!
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