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Old 03-22-2016, 12:36 PM   #1
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Bed Length?

I know this has probably been discussed - bed length. I'm enroute to look at a Chevy and it never occurred to me how bed length may effect towing a 5th wheel?

We are purchasing a 2009 Excel and now I'm wondering if cab contact could be an issue or if one particular wheel base rides better or worse than another.

I appologize now for not using the search function.

Thank you.

It's an '03 Duramax if there's something else that I should know. I don't know much about the Duramax.
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Old 03-22-2016, 01:54 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Live 2 Camp View Post
I know this has probably been discussed - bed length. I'm enroute to look at a Chevy and it never occurred to me how bed length may effect towing a 5th wheel?

We are purchasing a 2009 Excel and now I'm wondering if cab contact could be an issue or if one particular wheel base rides better or worse than another.

I appologize now for not using the search function.

Thank you.

It's an '03 Duramax if there's something else that I should know. I don't know much about the Duramax.
If the truck has a 6.5" bed than I would suggest a slider hitch any brand will work; some just cost more than others.

Now as far as the Duramax engine there are some known issues with the early years. Use the internet and read the links to them. All of the diesel truck engines have had issues some just more expensive than others. Also good maintenance is your friend and clean fuel is best.
See the attached link.
Commons 6.6L Duramax Problems & Concerns

Good Luck.
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Old 03-22-2016, 03:10 PM   #3
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Sliding hitch - key here is to remember to use it!

I remember some time back (been out of the 5th wheel scene for a while) when Dodge trucks would buck the passengers to death. I'm hoping those days are long gone with any manufacturer or wheelbase.
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Old 03-22-2016, 04:26 PM   #4
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Mine rides great. If you're worried about not remembering to use the slide, take a look at the Hijacker autoslide. I like it a lot more than the pullrite (It doesn't require a capture plate).

I'm assuming 3500. If it's a 2500, then I would stick with the lightest slider I could find. I really like the B&W Companion hitches, however they're really heavy.
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Old 03-22-2016, 07:50 PM   #5
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The truck I was looking at was a dually but sold before I got there. No biggie, I'd prefer a non-dually only because the Mrs hates the extra width of a dually... Been there, done that!

I can't envision a 3500 with a short box but I'm sure people do it.
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Old 03-22-2016, 08:00 PM   #6
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Only option if you want a MegaCab. Same wheelbase as the long bed roughly (A little less, but not much).

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Old 03-23-2016, 09:28 AM   #7
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The RAM Mega Cab (short bed only) is 20" longer in wheelbase than the Crew Cab short bed and 9" shorter than the Crew Cab long bed. I am talking wheelbase here.

The short bed boxes on both of these are the same at 6'4".
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Old 03-23-2016, 09:35 AM   #8
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I dont consider short bed real trucks. Real trucks have an 8 foot bed. Then you have enough room for a full sheet of plywood, sheetrock or a bunch of sruds. Besides with a short bed you need or at least should have a slider hitch. You loose storage room and save maybe two feet of turning room.
As for the dually/SRW debate, regardless of what the wife thinks, if you need one to carry the weight, get it! Nothing worse than being at the trucks limits or overloaded when traveling.
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Old 03-23-2016, 11:08 AM   #9
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I dont consider short bed real trucks. Real trucks have an 8 foot bed. Then you have enough room for a full sheet of plywood, sheetrock or a bunch of sruds. Besides with a short bed you need or at least should have a slider hitch. You loose storage room and save maybe two feet of turning room.
As for the dually/SRW debate, regardless of what the wife thinks, if you need one to carry the weight, get it! Nothing worse than being at the trucks limits or overloaded when traveling.

They (short bed) have their place, but a heavy duty truck ain't one of those places.

I love my 91 Short Bed Chevy 4x4. Works great around the property and still shines like new money (except the hood). But.... Considering a truck with a diesel for pulling.... Long bed all the way.

Relax folks.... Just having fun!
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Old 03-23-2016, 01:24 PM   #10
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Well thanks for your opinion on what a real truck is. All these years l have been towing with a short bed and calling it a truck. In the future l will refer to it as my wanna be truck. Silly me .... why didn't the saleman tell me that my bed is one foot six inches of being a real truck !
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Old 03-23-2016, 02:12 PM   #11
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And all this time I thought size didn't matter. Wait, wrong topic.

Seriously, I am one nod from the DW away from signing the line on a new short box (only because double cab / long boxes are so hard to find. Probably drive it home Friday. Somebody please tell me a short box will do fine.

Now I need to lead about sliding hitches.
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Old 03-23-2016, 02:58 PM   #12
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Just depends on how mich your trl weighs My 5th wheel weighs 14,300 loaded . I have a fake 3500 short bed Mega cab and it tows ot fine. If tou are going to be much over that l would get a dually.
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Old 03-23-2016, 03:03 PM   #13
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And all this time I thought size didn't matter. Wait, wrong topic.

Seriously, I am one nod from the DW away from signing the line on a new short box (only because double cab / long boxes are so hard to find. Probably drive it home Friday. Somebody please tell me a short box will do fine.

Now I need to lead about sliding hitches.
Ditto with me, I ain't owned a long bed since my 1974 Club Cab D250 Dodge.
Many many folks tow with short bed trucks without a slider. It seems to be 50%/50% from what I am seeing around here. I always ask them about it. Some guys without a slider say they wish they had one some times. Many of the guys with sliders say they hardly ever use it.

Many of the older trailers absolutely need a slider as the front cap won't allow a sharp turn. Many of the newer 96" wide trailers have what is called a Max Turn front cap and no slider is needed except in extreme backing up situations.

I don't have a 5'er yet but I do an extreme amount of research. I am worse than my wife shopping for a purse.

As far as the need for a short bed truck and turning a trailer that will hit scenario it seems the best sliders are the automatic ones. Pullrite is popular. Demco makes one many people like. A combo I have seen in action that was very cool is the Companion BW hitch and Airborne Sidewinder. What I liked about that combo is you never have to worry about the pin box contacting the truck bed sides and you also have storage room in your truck bed with it.

If you don't feel the need for a sliding hitch in your short bed the BW hitch is pretty solid, and heavy. The Andersen Ultimate (which will be my choice) is absolutely loved by those who use it due to the smoothness of ride and ease of putting the hitch in and out of the truck bed. It is also hated by those who don't use it cause it'll bend and fold up like a limp noodle if you hit a bump or slam on the brakes and many children and puppies will die.

My Mega Cab has a wheelbase only 9" less than a Crew Cab long bed truck. I like the long wheel base I have for better stability and better ride, but it is not real happy doing U-turns. That extra 9" on a long bed would be a killer to do a U-turn with.

On today's trucks you very seldom see a 2 door regular cab rig. Most folks drive 4 door trucks. But many of the short bed 4 door trucks have a longer wheel base than the regular cab long bed trucks do.

For example---I use RAM trucks as that is what I know.

A regular cab 8' bed truck has a wheel base of 140.5" and turn radius of 45.1"

A 4 door Crew cab short bed has a wheel base of 149.4" long and turn radius of 47.5

A Mega Cab short bed is 160.5" wheel base and turn of 50.7

So with this you can see the turn radius gets longer along with wheel base. This only makes sense. And if you have a 4X4 the radius gets longer.

For this reason a longer wheelbase truck with a short bed will have a difficult time hitting the cab against the trailer while moving forward than a short wheel base short bed truck.
I spoke with a guy at a trailer park last summer with a Mega Cab 3500 SRW 4X4 with a non-sliding hitch pulling a Cougar trailer and he said he could turn his steering wheel to full lock and drive in circles and the trailer would never hit. Backing up at a severe angle would be a different story. But of course if you tried you could even bash in the cab with a long bed backing up if you tried.

I'd never get a long bed. I need to use my truck for a lot more than pulling a trailer. I can haul all the 8' long plywood I want in my 6'4" bed with the tail gate down. I have a hard enough time as it is parking this Mega Cab the way it is.
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Old 03-23-2016, 09:24 PM   #14
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Sliding hitch - key here is to remember to use it! .

Get an auto-slider and forget it. It's worth the extra money.


Quote:
Originally Posted by head gamez View Post
They (short bed) have their place, but a heavy duty truck ain't one of those places.
I love my 91 Short Bed Chevy 4x4. Works great around the property and still shines like new money (except the hood). But.... Considering a truck with a diesel for pulling.... Long bed all the way.
Relax folks.... Just having fun!
Some of us need the cab space of the ridiculous-mega-cab. If the had it in a long bed "limo" edition, I would have bought it, but I gave up the bed length, added an auto-slider, and deal with it. I don't spend much time in the bed of the truck, but I do spend a lot of time in the cab... Yea, you give up some tow capacity, but I think you can still get a megacab dodge to tow about 28-29k...
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