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janpaul

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Easton, Maryland
I had a Fifth Airborne air ride hitch with the new sidwinder attachment installed on our new fiver. If you have never seen one, the sidewinder attachment puts the pivot point back where the box attaches to the camper. I saw a demo on it and decided to get one. The 5er is 102" wide, I have a shortbed pickup without a slider and can turn well past 90 degrees with still close to a foot of distance between the cab and camper front, it doesen't even come close. It also tracks the truck unbelievably well, I found I did not have to swing anywhere near as wide on a turn as I thought, because I can cut so sharp.Making a right hand 90 degree turn at a stop sign or intersection is a piece of cake. The air ride hitch also performed as advertised, it rides great, (870 miles from dealer to my house), which will help my wife Janice who sometimes gets car sick. Fifth Airborne has a demo video on their website for the sidewinder if anyone is interested in seeing it. The demo I saw did not have the air ride pin box combo like I got. The tech guy there told me Keystone bought several thousand of them and is going to offer as standard equipment on some models.   Paul
http://www.fifthairborne.com/



Edited to make link live
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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Moving the pivot point back makes a fifth wheel act more like a tagalong and that has some definite plusses. I see the model on the website has a 16,000 lb limit - is it the same with yours?

Would you mind sharing what it cost, either MSRP or your actual cost? I suspect a lot of people may be interseted in one of these if the price is less than a Pullrite Superslide.

 

janpaul

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Sep 12, 2006
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348
Location
Easton, Maryland
Cost on it was 1499.00 for the combo, and that is what the factory and the dealer quoted me. That includes both the sidewinder, and the air ride box. If you buy one without the other the individual components are less seperately, but I do not know how much. The picture on the website shows the sidewinder without the air ride box.The dealer is supposed to get me all the paperwork, which I assume will have all the specs, when they send me the rest of my papers. They had a little issue getting the combo because it is so new, and that was also the hold up on the paperwork.
 

GaryB

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Jul 29, 2006
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Evansville, IN
There's quite a discussion going on about the Sidewinder over at the NuWa Owners Forum.  I plan to buy a NuWa within the next year or so, and the Sidewinder seems like the ideal solution for a shortbed truck.  The only thing that concerns us is that the pivot point is moved behind the rear axle.  We're concerned that may introduce some instability or sway while towing.

Have you noticed anything such as this, as compared to a regular hitch that pivots directly above the rear axle?  Also, did the $1499 cost include installation?

Question to All - do you know of any problem (safety, stability, etc.) associated with such a hitch (more specifically, due to moving the pivot point backward)?

Thanks so much
Gary B.
 

janpaul

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Sep 12, 2006
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348
Location
Easton, Maryland
It towed and rode great, and that was 870 miles from Jackson, Tennessee to Easton, Maryland. I was up and down grades, had plenty of wind with the rainstorms that were present, and if you have ever been on I-81, lots of tractor trailers passing me literally all night. This was my first trip towing a 5er, but I have been towing goosenecks and other large trailers since I've had my license, and I was impressed with the ride. I had my cruise on 61-62 mph and everything was fine. I had installation worked out in my purchase with the dealer, but the 1499.00 was just the price on the combo unit. If you call Fifth Airborne with the number on their website, they are more than willing to give you plenty of info, including prices on it whether alone or with the air ride.
 

GaryB

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Evansville, IN
RV Roamer said:
Moving the pivot point back makes a fifth wheel act more like a tagalong and that has some definite plusses. I see the model on the website has a 16,000 lb limit - is it the same with yours?

RVRoamer (or anyone who might know) ---  Does moving the pivot point backward also affect the downward force (i.e. weight) on the hitch?  I'm trying to figure out whether the pin weight is affected, or if instability/sway could be introduced, or if excess stress will be placed upon some connection point as a result of this pivot point shift.

Thanks
Gary
 

janpaul

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Sep 12, 2006
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Easton, Maryland
I could be wrong, but I don't see how the location of the pivot point will affect the pin weight. That arrangement or a standard pin box is still dropping the weight in the same place on the hitch.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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At my Silver Springs FL home
The Hensley design is a weight distributing one and all weight-distributing hitches make the apparent weight point be forward of the actual hitch point. That is not related to the apparent pivot point, however.
 

janpaul

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Joined
Sep 12, 2006
Posts
348
Location
Easton, Maryland
I spoke with an engineer at the company, because I need to make a slight modification to the wedge that contacts the hitch, and he said they did extensive testing, logging in thousands of miles with the sidewinder, as did some rv manufacturers. It does not move significantly until  you get to a turning position like backing up or making a turn at an intersection, and will have no effect on the handling of the 5er,such as sway or instability.
 

GaryB

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Jul 29, 2006
Posts
223
Location
Evansville, IN
Thanks Paul!!!  That makes me feel alot better that no instability or sway will result from moving the pivot point backward. 

Thanks again for letting us know.
Gary
 

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