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Old 08-11-2011, 02:48 PM   #1
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Fifth Wheel Hitch

We are planning to move to a 5er in the next year or so. I am confused on the fifth wheel hitch. I have a 2011 Chevy 2500HD with the 6.0 liter gas engine. The bed is 6 1/2 feet. Now for the confusion. I am not sure if I need a slider hitch or not. What are the advantages/disadvantages? Most people I have talked with that have the slider hitch haven't used them much even with the shorter bed length. I also have a standard above the rail tool box in my truck. Will I be able to keep it in the truck or does it have to come out when I am towing? Any suggestions will help out.

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Old 08-11-2011, 04:26 PM   #2
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I had a slider in my 2010 Chevy 2500HD, but never had to deploy it. Only problem I had was the 6.0 gasser would move my 5vr (Montana 3150RL) but was under powered and heavily loaded even with air bags. Went to a 2011 GMC 3500HD Duramax/Allison dually and could not be happier. MPG went from about 5 mpg with the 6.0 to 11.8 mpg ave on our last 4700 mile swing through the western states.

Jimmy & Tre
Katy, TX
2014 Allegro Red 38QRA
& 2014 Jeep Sahara Unlimited Toad
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Old 08-12-2011, 12:38 PM   #3
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I have had two different trucks, both short beds and two different 5er's. With my first combination of a 2001 Chevy extend cab SB, 6L gas engine and 2006 Ameri-Camp with extended pin box. I hit the cab and broke the rear window when backing into the driveway at my house. I got distracted and forgot to extend the slider hitch.
This was the only time, I have hit the cab, but it was a lesson I will never forget. Since then I have always extended the slider hitch when backing up in my driveway and in camp grounds.
I have never found the need to use the slider hitch when traveling on the highway or city streets. More than enough room to maneuver thru the streets between the truck and 5er.
So for the piece of mind I would get a slider hitch with a SB truck. It is like the man said pay me now or pay me later, your call. But the rear window and truck/5er damage will be more than a slider hitch in cost.

I traded in the 2001 Chevy after pulling the 5er twice in one season. I told my wife never again, we either sell the 5er or buy a new DIESEL engine truck. As you can see we are still camping and pulling a 5er with a Dodge Cummins 6.7L diesel.
The fuel mileage was terrible with the gas engine when pulling, around 6 to 7MPG. With a 26 gallon tank in the Chevy I could only get 150 to 180 miles to the tank. Another thing to consider is gas stations are not too friendly to trucks pulling a trailer or 5er. So you need to consider that when looking for a gas station to fill up at. It is a bear to get the 5er in with the truck and not hit anything. Wife does not like to direct traffic in the gas station lot.
Jim W.
Jim & Jill
Sold: 2010 318SAB Cougar:New: 2016 Cedar Creek 34RL. 2008 Dodge 6.7LCummins the original 6.7L engine, w/68RFE Auto
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Old 08-13-2011, 12:31 PM   #4
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Have a Forest River Wildwood Sport 32SRV and had a Ford 360 with the V10. Had a Pull Rite slider hitch and needed it in tight quarters. Everywhere else would have been fine.

Tool box, keep in mind that the 6" or so that you have is on lever ground, if you back up a hill or pull in a campground on uneven ground that gap can alter. I would not do it just because I would forget or think I could make it, if you are careful it may work.

Truck, depends on the weight (loaded) and nubs, hills, or mountains. I traded my V10 for a new 6.7L diesel. My 5er is about 13k loaded. If I pulled in the flats we would have been ok, we are in enough hills that I was worried I would would run out of truck, and I do not like keeping the RPMs as high as I needed to drive our roads at a reasonable speed.
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Old 08-14-2011, 04:09 PM   #5
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Study the Automated Safety Hitch at www.automatedsafetyhitch.com and fully understand that what is important here is not what the truck can "pull", but how safely it can stop a heavy fifth-wheel fully loaded in a quick response situation. This is a very interesting product designed by an aeronautical engineer and there is a lot of good educational information on the site.
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Old 08-14-2011, 05:04 PM   #6
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When I had a 5er I had a slider hitch. Highly recommend one on a short bed truck. I have used mine over and over especially when coming home and backing into the drive from a narrow street. I have known plenty of people that hit the cab while backing up. The Auto slider hitches are more convienient but at least get a slider.

As far as the toolbox you probably won't know until you make the measurements while hooked up and turning. Compensate for grades.

Make sure you get a truck towing guide before you buy to see the weight limits of what you can tow. Include how much weight you plan on putting in the camper. Remember if you lose your electric brakes you still have to be able to stop with truck brakes. So power to pull is just part of the problem. There are lightweight 5ers that your truck can handle safely.

98 Endeavor DP, ISB275
RX300, Falcon II hitch, BB Vantage Select
VMSpc, 2002 Grey Ford Powerstroke
TST 507 w/ 10 Sensors
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