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Author Topic: 5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck  (Read 522 times)

NEWBERRYHI

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5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck
« on: December 29, 2017, 08:46:35 PM »
Hi all, we are looking at our first 5th wheel. We are getting a 2018 f350 short bed truck. The fw we are looking at is a keystone cougar 369bhs. So far we have only seen pictures. It appears to have an extended king pin box and a rounded nose with indentions for clearance. My question is , is a slider hitch still necessary given how campers seem to be more tailored for short bed towing?

Roy M

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Re: 5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2017, 09:01:44 PM »
You should be fine with a fixed hitch unless you want the peace of mind and are ok with the extra cost. To be sure measure from the pin to the outermost corner of the trailer that is below cab level, we will call this A. Now pick a point in the center of the truck box about 2 inches ahead of the axle centerline and measure to the corner of the cab, measurement B.  If A is greater than B you need to look at a slider.

steveblonde

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Re: 5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck
« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2017, 07:56:09 AM »
While HIGHLY unlikley a cab strike is possible if you make a turn greater than 90 degrees in which case a slider probably wouldnt help. You should be just fine without the slider. As with everything just be careful making super tight turns forward and in reverse.
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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: 5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck
« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2017, 09:37:00 AM »
I think you are actually referring to what is now called a "standard bed" (6,5 ft) rather than "short bed" (about 5.5 ft).  That terminology came about with the introduction of crew cabs on shorter wheelbase trucks.  An ultra-short box is used in that configuration and the marketing types decided to confuse things by calling the new ultra-short box "short bed" and renaming the 6.5 ft box as "standard bed". The 8 footer is still called "long".  Sales people, websites, and even some press articles may use either the old or newer terminology, so you have to be cautious with what you read and hear.

I mention this only to make sure you are talking about the 6.5 ft box/bed configuration. The 5.5 ft version is unsuitable for just about any 5W.  Even with a slider it is often susceptible to cab strikes..
Gary
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LFHenderson

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Re: 5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2017, 09:42:42 AM »
I use a B&W companion slide with my 6.5ft bed ford and Durango G384rlt. I have to slide the hitch back if making a 90 degree turn.
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NEWBERRYHI

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Re: 5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2017, 12:10:20 PM »
Yes it would be a standard bed 6.5 ft. Realistically, how often do you need to make a 90 degree turn. I read somewhere that the fw setup I mentioned can make a greater than 80 degree turn with a std. bed truck. Does that sound right?

Rene T

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Re: 5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2017, 01:22:14 PM »
Realistically, how often do you need to make a 90 degree turn.

Seldom, but it's that one time and you don't think about what the outcome could be then BANG and your rear window falls in the back seat. I have a Reese slider. I've never had to use it but if there comes a time, I'm ready if I think of it.  Also, If I ever need to tow one of the older RV's without the radius corners, I'll be able too.
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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: 5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck
« Reply #7 on: December 30, 2017, 02:58:03 PM »
Quote
I read somewhere that the fw setup I mentioned can make a greater than 80 degree turn with a std. bed truck. Does that sound right?

It sounds like the right ball park, but there is no general rule because the cab profile, hitch position, trailer pin box location, trailer width, and the amount of taper (radius) on the front of the trailer (if any) are all variables. Some like you describe may be able to do 90 degree turns, while others might be considerably less.  The time to find out is before you get into a position where an extreme turn is required.

Personally, I never found a need to make a turn so sharp that it approached 90 degrees, but it all depends on where you go and also to some extent on your driving skills. If you get messed up trying to back into a spot, say from a narrow road into an opening between trees or buildings, you can get at an acute angle almost without realizing. You get focused on the maneuvering problem and forget to check the trailer vs cab proximity.  That can happen with a slider too, if it's not the fully automatic type.  If you don't make it a habit to always engage the slider before backing, you might just forget that one time you really need it.
Gary
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SargeW

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Re: 5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck
« Reply #8 on: December 30, 2017, 03:45:01 PM »
In most cases, yes you probably would be OK. But driving down the road is easy stuff. It's backing into tight camping spots that is when it is suddenly critical. If your style of camping is one that you drive from one paved RV park to another, then it probably won't matter much. But if you like to get away from the big commercial parks and do state and national parks, then I would highly recommend getting one.

In my 5th wheel days we really enjoyed getting away to the more remote places. Some of the campsites I pulled into were really a test of my backing ability, which I got really good at. It was not unusual for me to go past 90 degrees to get into a spot. But I had a long bed truck and turns were not an issue. With a short bed I would have definitely had a slider.   Depends on your style of RVing.
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Boonieman

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Re: 5th wheel hitch and short bed ttruck
« Reply #9 on: December 30, 2017, 07:41:38 PM »
   Is it even possible to make a 90 degree turn going forward? I donít think so. As SargeW said, backing up in a tight spot is the issue, and you can easily go beyond 90 degrees. Itís not all that much more for a slider vs what it would cost to repair damage to your truck cab. If I had a short bed truck, I would rather have it and not need it, than be in a spot where I had no options. I mean letís face it, most of these fivers and the tow vehicles to pull them are not cheap, so if it is a concern why quibble over a few extra bucks for peace of mind?
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