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Old 11-14-2013, 05:02 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Cumminsfan View Post
I fail to see any draw backs from having the springs on top of the springs. 99% of all 5th wheels have the springs on top. Never hear much about spring failure. IMO it's more about how well the springs, axles and frame are built. Is there enough payload reserve so the TT's not overloaded? Overloading either setup is far more destructive than having proper spring/axle combinations. Find a TT that has over 2000lbs in reserve payload capacity and either set up should be fine.
In this thread you will see what happens:
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Old 11-15-2013, 12:45 AM   #16
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In this thread you will see what happens:
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Further substantiates my point. 5'ers are built tougher. Build a TT frame with the same quality and the over under issue is resolved. By cheap stuff and you get poor results.
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Old 11-15-2013, 12:50 AM   #17
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Well, there's two of on this thread that have experienced this problem first hand and it's not because of overloading. The spring hangers in our TT swing from side to side and has caused the bottom flange of the I-beams to be bent and distorted. It would just be a matter of time before there are fatigue cracks. In our case, the tall spring hangers and under-slung axles along with the lack of any re-enforcement have greatly aggravated the problem. In fact, a government certified frame shop that looked at it said it was the worst frame design they've ever seen. I've seen the identical design on quite a few other makes and models of TTs now. You can be certain some owners will eventually have problems but will probably be after the warranty expires. From an engineering perspective, tall spring hangers along with under-slung axles is not great unless there is some re-enforcement.

I really doubt there are many TTs out there with over 2K lbs in actual reserve payload capacity. They're often built to a minimum standard to be lighter in weight and cost competitive. And in doing so, they generally just don't have much actual reserve carrying capacity. If they did that, they'd be pricing themselves out of the market.

Many of the 5th wheel frames I have looked at have stronger frames and have more re-enforcement of the suspension. The higher elevation of the FW hitch point would make the lateral forces and movement somewhat different. I don't think you can compare FW frames to the ones on TTs.
Read my post. It's how well they are built. Over under is a non issue on a properly built frame. What you're saying is it's not ok to put springs on top of the axles on a poorly built frame, but ok under the axles since there's less stress. I for one would rather have a better built frame. All it takes is gussets welded vertically in the web of the I beam above each spring hanger. Or thicker spring hangers. If the frame doesn't have them then move on and find a TT that does.
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Old 11-15-2013, 05:46 AM   #18
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The manufactures aren't building cheap frames (for the most part), they are responding to market demands. Folks want a 1/2 ton towable camper. That is very doable, as mine demonstrates. However, the box is only 25 feet long. The demand is for lighter with more room. This means longer plus at least one slide. The manufacturer that can provide all that in a 1/2 ton towable unit will sew up the market. I've noticed a couple "1/2 ton towable" 5ers recently. I wonder what they look like underneath...
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Old 11-15-2013, 07:04 AM   #19
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I fail to see any draw backs from having the springs on top of the springs. 99% of all 5th wheels have the springs on top.

I have not noticed anywhere near that many--seems to me, about 99% of the fivers have the axles ABOVE the springs. The ones I have seen are in the lighter models that can be taken into places like hunting camps.

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Old 11-15-2013, 08:14 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Cumminsfan View Post
I fail to see any draw backs from having the springs on top of the springs. 99% of all 5th wheels have the springs on top. Never hear much about spring failure. IMO it's more about how well the springs, axles and frame are built. Is there enough payload reserve so the TT's not overloaded? Overloading either setup is far more destructive than having proper spring/axle combinations. Find a TT that has over 2000lbs in reserve payload capacity and either set up should be fine.
I totally agree

I did have a tube frame 5th wheel that the spring mount were moving and had to place beams across to reinforce all the spring supports

Present heavier unit with same spring mounts has never moved while axles are 2k heavier.
But it has the heavier I beam design.

The overhung springs usually have a flat spot for the plate. My lighter spring plates were replaced due to loosening of the u-bolts that caused a center pin to break.
Just can't just change from under to over without worrying about the center pin and proper plate arrangements.

Also unbalanced tires will cause most bushing wear on lite trailers.
I have 7k axles with same nylon bushings with balanced tires and bushing wear is no problem.
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