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Old 04-25-2013, 12:33 PM   #1
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Truck Bed Size

Is there any information on optimal truck bed size for 5th Wheels?

4 feet, 6'6", 8 feet? Why is one better than others?
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Old 04-25-2013, 12:39 PM   #2
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You are pretty much assured that you won't have any cab-to-5th wheel cap clearance problems when turning or backing with an 8' bed. You might with a short bed truck, depending on a lot of variables such as exact hitch placement, 5th wheel cap configuration, pinbox extension configuration, etc. That's why they make sliding 5th wheel hitches.

I've always towed with a long bed (8'). Others make a short bed work for their own reasons - getting the truck into a garage or whatever. Or they live with dented C pillars on the cab and the risk of popping out the rear cab window.

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Old 04-26-2013, 10:43 AM   #3
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8' is safer and easier it terms of hitch placement because there is more room. But like Rusty said, people use short boxes too. I know a few people that use short boxes and they haven't had any issues.
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Old 04-26-2013, 11:03 AM   #4
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4feet was that a typo?
My 2 TVs for 4 different 5ths were 6' 6" boxes, had a slider hitch in both trucks and never used it. I was very aware of the pin box extension when looking at new 5ers.
JMHO. And I can't really back this up with any current info , as I haven't looked at 5ths for a number of years. But here goes; 5ers under 32' are usually set up for a 6'6" box, over that lenght, you need an 8' box, or a slider hitch in your 6'6".
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Old 04-26-2013, 01:40 PM   #5
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I agree with Rusty that an 8' bed is optimal but for me I have a short bed long wheel base truck; the Ram Mega Cab. This does fit in the garage but a long bed extra long wheel base Ram Mega Cab would not.

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Old 04-26-2013, 06:29 PM   #6
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The 4' beds are only found on specialty vehicles, the 6'6" bed is the standard truck bed, the 8' bed is the long-bed for pickups. Most 5er manufacturers today make their units for towing with a standard bed pickup, they normally have convex corners on the front cap to accommodate the shorter distance between hitch centerline and cab. When I purchased a pickup to tow a 5er a long bed was the norm. Were I to do it again today I would purchase a standard bed pickup and matching 5er with convex front cap corners.
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Old 04-26-2013, 06:40 PM   #7
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For easy of mind and ride, a long wheel base with an 8' bed is the way to go.

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Old 04-27-2013, 09:03 AM   #8
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8' is for towing fifth wheels. If you go with a shorter bed you will need a very costly slider hitch to compensate for the bed not being long enough.
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Old 04-27-2013, 09:25 AM   #9
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I've always thought that trucks with short boxes and crewcabs or supercabs are for weenies and those that want an over-sized SUV. Can't get a full sheet of plywood in the bed without it hanging way out and 12' and longer 2x4s are out of the question. However....

Now that we have a truck with a long box and supercab, I find that the extra 20" or so in overall length makes a humongous difference in parking and turning corners. I never would have guessed. Now I usually head for a parking spot way at the back of the lot. Our old reg. cab with long box was a breeze to park and drive around town in comparision.

I can now see why some opt for the short boxes and why those that tow might want one. If someone bought a truck primarily for towing a 5-er and can make the hitch clearance work, I think I would go with a short box. I hesitate to think how hard it is to park and drive a crewcab, long box dually but I've seen lots of young girls driving them in our horse country neighborhood.
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Old 04-27-2013, 09:42 AM   #10
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I hesitate to think how hard it is to park and drive a crewcab, long box dually but I've seen lots of young girls driving them in our horse country neighborhood.
It's like anything else. Just drive it and get accustomed to it. My wife has no problem at all driving our crew cab long bed dually, either towing or running around town after we've arrived and unhitched.

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Old 04-27-2013, 10:10 AM   #11
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Is there any information on optimal truck bed size for 5th Wheels?

4 feet, 6'6", 8 feet? Why is one better than others?
Ford half ton trucks come with 5.5 - 6.5 and 8 foot beds. The super duty line comes with 6 foot nine inch and 8 foot beds. This is 3 inches longer then the other brands short bed trucks. Sometimes 3 inches can make a lot of difference. I towed a fiver with the six- nine bed, but it came with a hitch extension. I have a sliding fifth wheel and usually just kept it in the rearward position. No problem whatsoever. I see many short bed trucks pulling fivers now days. For the longer heavy rigs I would opt for a long bed truck. Just more room and better ride. And the biggest reason is fuel tank size. My short bed superduty has a 30 gallon tank. I have a long bed superduty and it has a 38 gallon tank. The tanks are all too small and all SD and HD trucks should have a 50 gallon minimum. They make replacement tanks that big. Why can't Ford, GM and Chrysler? I think their engineers probably play too much golf!
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Old 04-27-2013, 10:29 AM   #12
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I have a sliding fifth wheel and usually just kept it in the rearward position.
With all respect, the sliding hitch should be in its rearward position only for low speed maneuvering. It should be in its forward position for over-the-road towing. Here's what Reese says:

Quote:
When maneuvering tight turns such as backing up, a slider unlocks and slides toward the rear of the truck, providing room for proper clearance at the cab. It then unlocks and slides forward for regular towing.
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Old 04-27-2013, 11:43 AM   #13
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With all respect, the sliding hitch should be in its rearward position only for low speed maneuvering. It should be in its forward position for over-the-road towing. Here's what Reese says:



Rusty
Rusty this is true and I have a Reese wheel. My fiver had a very light pin weight. Jayco 265 RK, and very light fiver overall. And I was pulling with a 08 F350 4X4 four door short bed. Very under loaded. When I pull my goose neck trailer with heavy loads I always put the wheel in the front tow position. I have a king pin on the goose neck as I like that better then a goose neck ball. We don't have the fiver anymore so I only use the tow position instead of the, maneuvering position. This has the pin right over the rear axle. In the maneuver position it is about a foot back I am thinking. And we used to pull a 22 foot Baja with a 454, behind the fiver and I couldn't tell it was back there. Couldn't see it either unless you were turning. This is a V10 truck with 4.30 limited slip rear end. Now you know why 30 gallons is not a whole lot of fuel.
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Old 04-27-2013, 12:00 PM   #14
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With all respect, the sliding hitch should be in its rearward position only for low speed maneuvering. It should be in its forward position for over-the-road towing. Here's what Reese says:



Rusty
Our slider was manual only. Not one of the automatic kind that slides back on turns. You either lock it forward or back.
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