Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Tow Vehicles: settle an arguement
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 > settle an arguement

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noonenosthis1

northern california

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Posted: 11/12/20 11:33am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi all,

My husband and I are having a discussion about getting a 5th wheel. We currently have a TT but I've heard that a 5th is easier to tow. As I have not driven this TT, and I need to learn as we are not spring chickens, I was looking for something to make the drive easier for me.
Anyway, we have a 2015 F350, single rear wheel, crew cab, 4x4, 6.2 gasser. I say we should look at 5ths that are 10,000 or below. He says we can go higher. What is the formula again for determining weight?

Thanks!

Wayfarer

Northeast Alabama

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Posted: 11/12/20 11:57am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The first thing is to look inside the driver's door for a yellow sticker. The sticker will tell how many pounds your truck can tow. For 5th wheels the formula for weight that the truck carries is the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating(GVWR) of the RV time 20%. So if the 10000 lbs is the GVWR, not empty weight (UVW), then you would plan for 2000 lbs on the truck. I would think your truck should have over 3000 lbs of capacity. You have to allow for the weight of the 5th wheel hitch, passenger, and any other things that you carry in the truck. Normally an F-350 gas truck can handle much more than a 10000 lb RV as far as weight goes. Now if you will be happy with how well the truck will pull the trailer (power wise) is another conversation.

BurbMan

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Posted: 11/12/20 11:59am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Scroll down to the last page on this Ford Towing Guide and see that your truck is rated for a max of 12,000 lb fifth wheel if you have the 3.73 axle ratio and 15,000 lbs if you have the 4.30 axle.

These would be loaded or GVWR weights on the trailer, so something in the 10k dry weight range is probably right.

Also remember that a 5er puts about 20% of its weight on the pin, so a loaded 15k trailer puts 15000 * 20% = 3000 pin weight plus hitch and whatever else is in the truck. Check the yellow weight sticker on the driver's door jamb so you don't go over that loaded weight for the truck.

Sorry to say this is one vote for the hubster....


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Lwiddis

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Posted: 11/12/20 12:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I just don't believe one is "easier" than the other. Each has its advantages.


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jdc1

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Posted: 11/12/20 12:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Rule of thumb......get what the wife wants.

Grit dog

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Posted: 11/12/20 12:30pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

There's no set formula save for the solid recommendation to stay below the rated towing capacity of your vehicle as a conservative yet competent upper limit.
And depending on the basis for that limit, is also dependent on how much "better" it tows.
IE: your truck, gasser, the limit is more based on the the truck's power to move the load well. At your limit, it will not have the power to pull grades at the same speed as a diesel and not as good of grade braking.
Diesels limits are generally the chassis rating and at the (higher) limit of a diesel (apples to apples trucks), the limit is generally based on the chassis limits.

"Better"? Again subjective. Generally GNs and 5vers are more stable than conventional hitch trailers. And they can generally be turned tighter and backed into tighter spaces than the same length bumper pull trailer.
Putting on alot of miles, I'd rather have a 5ver. Occasional towing, I'd take the $ savings of a TT over a comparable size 5ver.


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time2roll

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Posted: 11/12/20 12:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I would rather be at the very max with a 5th wheel than a TT any day.

As far as I am concerned bigger is not always better. Many great spots have length restrictions.

OK having said that start with your actual tow capacity including all options. Anything that reduces capacity must be considered. Your owner's manual or the towing guide will have this. Don't just look for the highest number, you need your number. Keep the trailer GVWR within this tow rating for best results. Look in the footnotes if there is any reduction due to frontal area of the trailer.

Next you need to prove out the weight carrying capacity to carry the pin weight, hitch weight, extra truck cargo weight. This may also reduce the size of the trailer.

You could weigh the truck and post the front and rear actual weights and post the actual trailer model you are considering for best answers.

Yes this is a bit tedious and frustrating. I don't think 10,000 is a magic number. And we don't know if that is dry weight, Gross weight, or something in the middle.


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JKJavelin

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Posted: 11/12/20 12:49pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

noonenosthis1 wrote:

Hi all,

My husband and I are having a discussion about getting a 5th wheel. We currently have a TT but I've heard that a 5th is easier to tow. As I have not driven this TT, and I need to learn as we are not spring chickens, I was looking for something to make the drive easier for me.
Anyway, we have a 2015 F350, single rear wheel, crew cab, 4x4, 6.2 gasser. I say we should look at 5ths that are 10,000 or below. He says we can go higher. What is the formula again for determining weight?

Thanks!


You don't give any numbers about your TT, but your gas engine might feel quite underpowered towing a fifth wheel. A general rule of thumb has been over 10,000 lbs = diesel truck. And I learned the hard way.


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gbopp

The Keystone State

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Posted: 11/12/20 01:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

jdc1 wrote:

Rule of thumb......get what the wife wants.

Yes, what is the husband thinking? [emoticon]

4x4ord

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Posted: 11/12/20 01:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you buy the 5th wheel you want and the truck proves to be too small then you just buy a truck that's right for your 5ver. If you buy a 5ver that's small enough for your truck and decide it's too small for you, you have to start all over again to be happy.


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