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Old 05-05-2012, 09:38 PM   #15
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I have towed TT @ 14000 pounds (Commercial) with a 1 ton, Goose Neck @ 14000 pounds (Commercial) and 5er @ 13000 pounds (personal).

The tt had load distribution hitch and it is a great thing. I towed the tt without an anti-sway bar and that was a nightmare. It was 32 feet long and at the heavy weight when ever anyone came up behind me it would break the draft and the swaying would start. The only way to relieve the swaying was to slow down. That would usually cause the person behind me to pass. Since travel was typically slower than traffic, it would not be long before the next person behind you would come up and break the draft. Half way from CA to TX I stopped and bought an anti-sway bar. Great invention. Two lane roads were a stinker.

The Goose Neck worked basically the same as the 5er for towing. I found that the control was better, backing was definitely easier, and turning and backing allowed for 90 degrees, wheres the tt was limited in turning and backing. Also, whenever backing with the tt the anti-sway bar had to be disconnected, which was easy to do, but still had to be done.
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Old 05-06-2012, 03:47 AM   #16
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I've towed both and even a driver induced sway with my 33' 5er was non-existent.
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Old 05-06-2012, 03:55 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by SmokeyWren View Post
But if you invest in a Hensley Arrow or ProPride hitch, the TT will tow just as good as any 5er.
I stongly disagree with this statement!

Lets compare the same light duty truck and haul two trailers (one tag and one 5th wheel) that both weigh in at the trucks max towing limit for a bumper pull. The fiver will pull, and feel much better than the tag almost 100% of the time!

Why do most late model trucks have a higher towing weight limit for a 5th wheel than a bumper pull? The truck has exactly the same; HP, transmission, gear ratio weight, but yet the factory see it safe to raise the towing limit while pulling a 5er!
That in itself makes it pretty clear which tows better when comparing apples to apples!

When loaded heavy a 5er gives the best ride, and you would be doing it with a dually diesel for best results!
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Old 05-06-2012, 07:55 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Back-to-Doo View Post
Why do most late model trucks have a higher towing weight limit for a 5th wheel than a bumper pull? The truck has exactly the same; HP, transmission, gear ratio weight, but yet the factory see it safe to raise the towing limit while pulling a 5er!
Because the weight of a TT is limited by the weight capacity of the standard factory receiver. If you replace the receiver with a reciever that has a higher weight capacity, you no longer have that weight limit, so you can tow a TT that has the same weight as a 5er or gooseneck trailer.

Examples: Per the Ford 2012 RV and Trailer Towing Guide, my 2012 F-150 with GCWR of 14,000 pounds has a tow rating of 8,400 pounds, either 5er or TT. The receiver is rated for a max trailer weight of 10,500 pounds, so that tow vehicle is not limited by the weight rating of the receiver. Therefore it can tow either a 5er or TT that weighs up to 8400 pounds without exceeding the GCWR of the tow vehicle.

But move up to a 2012 F-250 4x4 diesel CrewCab with GCWR of 23,500 pounds, and the conventional tow rating is 14,000 pounds - because the stock factory receiver hitch is rated for a max trailer weight of 14,000 pounds. But the tow rating for a 5er is 15,200 because it's not limited by the receiver hitch, and Ford assumes you will install a 5er hitch that is rated for at least 15,200 pounds.

Now, back up to that same F-250 but with the gas engine and GCWR of 19,000 pounds. Receiver is rated for 14,000 pounds max trailer weight. Tow rating for conventional towing is 12,200 pounds. Tow rating for fifth wheel towing is 12,100 pounds. What? Tow rating for a TT is higher than for a 5er? How'd that happen? Sorta blows a hole in the idea that you can tow a heavier 5er than TT with the same tow vehicle.

Quote:
That in itself makes it pretty clear which tows better when comparing apples to apples!
No, it doesn't, when you understand why the conventional and 5er tow rating is different for some, but not all, tow vehicles.
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Old 05-06-2012, 08:53 AM   #19
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We towed a 28' Silver Streak and a 35' Avion travel trailer using a Reese Dual Cam Straightline HP hitch. Set up properly, neither trailer presented any problem with towing. Both were stable and never so much as a wiggle in cross winds or passing trucks. Having had and again have a 5th wheel trailer, the travel trailer towed every bit as good as the 5ers. So you can't have a blanket statement that ALL 5th wheel tow better than a travel trailer.

If you do your home work and set up a travel trailer properly with a properly sized tow vehicle, a TT will not be an issue.

But we see lots of people "towing" a TT (and a 5er as well) with a truck that is too small and they have problems.

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Old 05-06-2012, 09:38 AM   #20
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I've pulled both. As noted, a TT with a good weight distribution hitch and sway control system does fine. However, my personal preference is a dually with about 3,000 in the bed.
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Old 05-06-2012, 09:55 AM   #21
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Granted the DRW with a heavy load will ride better. A lightly loaded truck will beat you to death.

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Old 05-06-2012, 11:42 AM   #22
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I've pulled both. Either one, with the right hitch, tow vehicle, and weight distribution, is a joy to pull. With any of those things out of whack, either one can be a real pain.

As a rule the 5er is more forgiving for errors, and the TT cuts tighter on the turns, and must be watched closely.

JMHO.

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Old 05-06-2012, 01:19 PM   #23
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This could be a HOT issue, but I'm really curious since I've never pulled a 5er. Here is why I ask:

I drive a tractor trailer and find that the combination always handles better when the weight is biased heavy on the tractor. Fully loaded, on a 5 axle combination, weight limits will dictate that the tractor will be heavier. But given the opportunity, I load the front heavy and the rear light. Maxed out it works out to 58/42 with a 2 axle trailer and in Canada, about 49/51 with a tridem.

IMO: The more the trailer outweighs the truck, the worse the handling gets.

With my van and TT, I keep this in mind and load the front heavy, even filling the water tank because a heavier tongue weight means a heavier tow vehicle. Coincidentally it too works out to a 58/42 split and handles great.

But when I look at the GVW's of 5th wheels and 20-25% hitch weights, I'm guessing the trailer ends up quite a bit heavier than the average tow vehicle. So I assume the handling is worse.

What say you?

(sorry for the long post)
Bob. I think you are the right track. I believe that the way the way TTs are built we have builtin trouble. If you measure how the axles are located in comparison to the TT box, you we see that most if not all are very near to the balance point. My 28' TT is 2.5' behind the mid point of the box. There are things that offset that. My TT has the fresh & black water tanks behind the axles and 2 grey water tanks in front. Also it has a 12' slide that goes from the axle center line forward. IMHO with that much rear over hang it gives side wind or Bow wake from big trucks/MH a lot of leverage to push you around unless you have an expensive hitch or a heavy TV. I also have a flat bed trailer (with a 20' bed) that the axles center line is 5' behind the midpoint of the bed. I have never have any sway and don't use a sway bar. When loading it I keep the load back towards the axles. In the case where I load 2 tractors I load the heavy one in back. I will not use it with a SRW truck. With larger loads I do use the WDH to put more weight on the TV front axle.
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Old 05-07-2012, 05:30 AM   #24
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~Now, back up to that same F-250 but with the gas engine and GCWR of 19,000 pounds. Receiver is rated for 14,000 pounds max trailer weight. Tow rating for conventional towing is 12,200 pounds. Tow rating for fifth wheel towing is 12,100 pounds. What? Tow rating for a TT is higher than for a 5er? How'd that happen? Sorta blows a hole in the idea that you can tow a heavier 5er than TT with the same tow vehicle.


Not really wanting to get into a pissing match over this, but your example is only trying to mislead and nothing more. While yes what you say is true itís not the whole story.

Letís discuss that 2012 F-250s 6.2L gas with a 3.73 rear end @ 19000 GCVW.
Hmm, does it seem odd to anyone that on that data sheet it is only the F-250 with GCVW of 19000, that your fact holds true? (Actually this holds true for the 2012 F-350 6.2L gas with a 3.73 rear end @ 19,500 GCVW also, but the reason is exactly the same for both trucks)
Let's look a bit more closely shall we? Maybe it was missed, the weight for the truck in your example towing that size trailer has reached that trucks GCVW. I believe Ford is accounting for the weight of a 5th wheel hitch and mount with the 100 or so pound difference between TT vs. 5er towing limits here. (but thatís only an assumption on my part)

How about if we were to compare towing limits of another gear ratio on those same trucks?
Let's see, take a 2012 F-250 6.2L gas and ONLY change the gear ratio to 4.30 (which also changes the trucks GCVW to 22,000) on those same trucks and low and behold once again even these gas trucks are rated to tow a heavier 5th wheel! Way heavier! Go figure, this truck is rated to tow up to 3,000 pound heavier 5er. Yet the TT stays close in weight limits. Huh? Now why is this? What, with a larger GCVW this allows for a heavier 5er but only slightly heavier TT. ??? How can this be? What happed to that 14000 lbs factory receiver? Whatís the limiting factor on those trucks when regarding TT tow limits? WOW, it is amazing when you fully understand what your reading isn't it!

Once anyone starts changing factory receiver hitches or other items affecting towing limits, then all bets are off and the factory data sheets mean nothing because of the unknowns!



Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokeyWren View Post
~No, it doesn't, when you understand why the conventional and 5er tow rating is different for some, but not all, tow vehicles.


In my first post I clearly stated 'most late model trucks' as I already knew while 'on paper' there is those few trucks that claim to be able tow a heavier TT than 5er. Those few TVs are NOT the norm, but thanks!
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Old 05-07-2012, 05:37 AM   #25
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Might it have to do with leverage?

Where on the truck the ## is placed. Ie over the axel. Or some distance behind the axel.
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Old 05-07-2012, 06:42 AM   #26
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back-to-doo,

And that is why YOU have to do the research on each truck considering engine, cab, and axle. You cannot take the blanket manufacturer's statement the their truck has a towing capacity of a gazillion pounds. (when properly equipped). The fine print in the footnotes is a gottcha'ya.

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Old 05-07-2012, 07:10 AM   #27
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TXiceman,

I do agree 100%!
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Old 05-07-2012, 09:55 AM   #28
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I have driven only one 5th wheeler, it was, in fact, A Semi. but based on what I know of engineering I'd have to think a 5er would tow better epically if you are doing a panic stop on a curve.

There a secondary question however.. "Will my truck tow this" Met a guy at the last CG I was in who never asks that question... The link.. Tells why He shopped there.

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