5th wheel with 3 axles

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bigtexan99

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Joined
Oct 15, 2006
Posts
157
I'm shopping for a used 5th wheel and saw a unit with 3 axles. 

Does the 3 axle 5th wheel tow any better than the 2 axle 5th wheel? 

My real question is what is the purpose of the 3rd axle.  Is it just support for more weight?  Or is it for towing stability.

Thx
 
F

Frizlefrak

Guest
Fifth wheels by nature are VERY stable to tow (assuming you're using a tow vehicle with the correct GVWR).  I could be wrong, but the only reason I can think of to add a third axle would be for weight.

How long is this fifth wheel you're looking at, and do you know what it weighs?  And what are you using for a tow vehicle?  I would look good and hard at the numbers before I bought something that size, just to ensure that your tow vehicle is up to the task safety wise.

Good luck on your search.  :)

 

Gary RV_Wizard

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Feb 2, 2005
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At my Silver Springs FL home
Just to carry the weight without using expensive, high capacity axles with huge tires and big brakes.  Most RV trailers limit axle capacity to around 7000 lbs each and add axles as the weight of the trailer goes up.  Thus trailers over around 13,000 lbs GVWR will have more than two axles.

A 2 axle fifth wheel tracks so well that any benefit from a third axle is of no interest.  And there is actually a slight negative because the trailer turns on the front-most  axle and drags the others slightly sideways as it goes. This "scrubbing" tends to wear the tires on the other axles a bit more than the front one. Rarely a big concern, but it may be observable at times. Make a sharp turn on sandy soil and you will actually see the drag marks in the sand.
 

Shayne

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Jan 22, 2006
Posts
4,324
3rd Axle does have advatage but only to Tire manufacturers.  The drag really tears up the tires whe cornering in tight areas, which happens more frequently then you would expect.
 

Gottasmilealot

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Oct 8, 2006
Posts
324
Location
PA
Toll roads like them.? It allows you to use the vacuum toll lane where the suck all the cash out of your vehicle as you pass.? ;D
 

Shayne

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Joined
Jan 22, 2006
Posts
4,324
Yep  I know the feeling  When I go thru them it's 5 axles  3 on MH(Tag) and 2 on trailer.
 

GaryB

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Joined
Jul 29, 2006
Posts
223
Location
Evansville, IN
RV Roamer said:
Just to carry the weight without using expensive, high capacity axles with huge tires and big brakes.? Most RV trailers limit axle capacity to around 7000 lbs each and add axles as the weight of the trailer goes up.? Thus trailers over around 13,000 lbs GVWR will have more than two axles.

A 2 axle fifth wheel tracks so well that any benefit from a third axle is of no interest.? And there is actually a slight negative because the trailer turns on the front-most? axle and drags the others slightly sideways as it goes. This "scrubbing" tends to wear the tires on the other axles a bit more than the front one. Rarely a big concern, but it may be observable at times. Make a sharp turn on sandy soil and you will actually see the drag marks in the sand.

Hi Gary (RVRoamer)

I just wanted to compliment you on how clear, thorough, helpful and grammatically correct that your responses are!  I bet you could write an excellent RV ?user?s guide? type of book!  I, for one, would buy it!

Thanks again for all your help in answering our questions
Gary
 

Jack

Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2005
Posts
12
A three axle" 5th wheel" is really called a 7th wheel--just being more accurate.
 

Tinner

Member
Joined
May 29, 2006
Posts
22
Location
Holland, Texas
I've put a lot of miles on both double and triple axle trailers.  Yes, it cost more for tires as you have two more.  There is another pair of bearing to pack also.  I haven't noticed a big difference on tire wear as mentioned above even though it is correct that you get a sliding motion as you do with even the double axle too.  I rotate my tires.  If you want to have fun, go to your local tire store and ask for a 5 wheel rotation, no body seems to know how to do that anymore.  Personally, I prefer the triple axle.  I have a 36 foot Cardinal with triple axle.  Never lost a tire on it but have on gooseneck trailers of both type and get less negative reaction from the triple axle trailer.  Good Luck.
 

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