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Old 10-09-2011, 10:16 AM   #1
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tow a 5th wheel with a 6' bed?

Can you tow a 5th wheel with a 6'bed pickup? If yes any problems different than 8' bed? I am moving from M/H to 5th wheel.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:24 AM   #2
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Yes, and no problem as long as the truck is adequate to tow the 5th wheel you select. Get a slider hitch, you may never need it, but if you do, the few hundred dollars more will bail you out of a tight turn situation. I tow a Montana Mountaineer with a Ford F-250 short bed and have never needed to use the slider.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:27 AM   #3
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I tow my 318SAB Cougar with a RAM (Dodge) Mega Cab. This has a 6.5 ft bed, but a long wheel base truck.
I use too tow a 5er with a 2001 Chevy Silverado SWB with a 6.5 ft bed with no issues.
Some may say no, but I do believe you must use a slider hitch, either it is manual or automatic style. I use the manual style hitch as this severs my needs. I have a Reese 16K hitch.
I only need to use the slider (maneuver position)when I am backing up to place the 5er in a camp ground back in site or in my drive way. I do not require the slider to be in the maneuver position when I am towing.
I have never experience any issue when towing in cities or on the interstate when the hitch is in the towed position.
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Old 10-09-2011, 11:13 AM   #4
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It all depends--- Some fifth wheels are built to accommodate short wheel base pickups and advertise them as such. They will have front corners that are rounded off. Other 5th wheels which weren't built to accommodate short wheelbase trucks will actually hit on the corner if you turn too sharply mainly when backing into a campsite. I have seen a couple of pickups that the corner of the cab plus the rear window have been damaged.
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Old 10-09-2011, 11:59 AM   #5
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Thanks, just what I wanted to know
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Old 10-09-2011, 12:04 PM   #6
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It all depends--- Some fifth wheels are built to accommodate short wheel base pickups and advertise them as such. They will have front corners that are rounded off. Other 5th wheels which weren't built to accommodate short wheelbase trucks will actually hit on the corner if you turn too sharply mainly when backing into a campsite. I have seen a couple of pickups that the corner of the cab plus the rear window have been damaged.
Oh, did you see us pulling into Reno last year. Yup we managed to do it. We have a manual slider but it is a regular pita to move, going to upgrade with the trailer next spring.
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Old 10-09-2011, 12:19 PM   #7
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I prefer an 8' bed for a 5er, you never worry about the trailer putting goonie dents in the corner of the truck. Next issue is does the truck have enough GVWR and rear axle GAWR to carry the pin weight of the 5er.

Never believe the sales people or the manufacturers Tow Ratings. The tow ratings are based on a base model truck, and only 1 small driver in it's weight. You have to read all of the foot notes in the rating. There is usually a note to the effect that you are not to exceed any other ratings such as GAWR and GVWR.

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Old 10-09-2011, 03:39 PM   #8
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Pull our 5er with a 6 1/2' bed all the time and don't need a slider hitch. Some 5ers are built for that.
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Old 10-09-2011, 03:57 PM   #9
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Had a PullRite slide, and it worked flawlessly. As you turn sharp it slides to the rear of the truck.
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Old 10-09-2011, 04:18 PM   #10
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It works for me. But I have a slider hitch. I've never had to use the slider, though.
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Old 10-09-2011, 04:31 PM   #11
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I tow with a 6.5 foot bed F350 but have a 5er that works well with that arrangement. I can do almost a 90* turn, but am very careful. So far the worst place to back in has been my own driveway, much worse then any camp ground site I've ever encountered. I do have my B&W Companion set pretty far back (~4" behind the CL of the rear axle) and against all recommendations, but have done so for many thousands of miles.

If you have a choice, an 8 foot bed is best, but not necessary for all units
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Old 10-10-2011, 11:45 AM   #12
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Oh, did you see us pulling into Reno last year. Yup we managed to do it. We have a manual slider but it is a regular pita to move, going to upgrade with the trailer next spring.
You will note I was being diplomatic by saying the rear of the cab and window where "damaged". I could have said rear window smashed and corner of the cab caved in!!
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Old 10-10-2011, 12:08 PM   #13
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You'll find, as several have said, that towing a 5th wheel with a short bed and no sliding hitch works great - until one gets into a tough situation only to find out that, oops, it DOESN'T work after all. That's generally how the caved in rear cab pillars and broken rear cab glass happen.

Yes, perhaps some current 5th wheels have a front cap design that will work with a short bed truck and no sliding hitch, but one had better check it out thoroughly to determine what it can and can't do before getting stuck in a tight situation after dark. In those immortal words of Dirty Harry, "...a man's got to know his limitations!"


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Old 10-11-2011, 11:53 AM   #14
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If you are careful and scout where you have to get to then you may never have to use the slider. Myself I never want to have to jack my 5er around in a 90 deg turn. When you do that the tires are not rolling but they are twisting and torqueing around on the rims. I really don't think that is healthy for the tires or the suspension. I can't help but think that some of the tire problems people have come from having twisted them in a 90 deg turn and broke the belts inside. I have been in some tight campgrounds and gas stations but have never had to jack my trailer around that hard. My slider is probably rusted in place now lol... JMO
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