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Old 04-08-2016, 03:24 PM   #1
kenkap's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Chatham, NJ US
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Question Has any one test driven a 5th wheel before buying?

I am a 10+ year veteran of pulling a toad behind my MH (see signature), and I've usually test driven any vehicle before I bought it. But I'm about to switch to a 5th wheel and have never driven either a large pickup or, more importantly, a 5th wheel. I will certainly test drive the truck for feel, fit, etc.

Should I be concerned about a) "buying without trying" the trailer
and/or b) switching to the combo altogether? Is it less than smart to drive the 5th wheel from the dealer with nothing more than towing it around a big parking lot for a while?

'04 Kountry Star 3740, '09 VW Eos (6 speed)
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Old 04-08-2016, 04:55 PM   #2
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There is alot going on when pulling any trailer. Take your time be very aware of the total length of your vehicle. Put your head on a swivel and don't forget about how tall your rig is. You should be ok with it. Good luck.

2008 CC 34RLSA / 2003 F-250 SD 6.0
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Old 04-08-2016, 05:09 PM   #3
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Juts remember the the 5th wheel will not precisely track the truck on turns. Rather, it will turn somewhat inside of the truck's path.

Retired electronics engineer. Avid paddler & birder.
2011 Silverado 2500HD, diesel, 4x4,crew cab, 8' bed
Palomino Puma 253FBS (27' 5er) & '94 19' Class B
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Old 04-08-2016, 05:45 PM   #4
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Assuming you have checked the weight capacities of the truck, and picked a 5th wheel trailer that is suitable, just take it slowly until you get the feel for the set-up. You are an experienced big RVer, so you know to watch mirrors. You just have to swing that truck wider than normal, like a tractor-trailor rig. I asked my dealer before my purchase to drive it over (his truck) to make sure it would back-in to my driveway OK. I went from a 21' trailer to a 33' 5th wheel with a quick and easy learning curve. As mentioned above, the height is the thing I have to be most concerned with (you're already used to the height clearance concerns).
A proper quick, brave, steady, ready gentleman!
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5th wheel, test

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