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Old 07-27-2015, 06:54 PM   #1
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F150 as Dinghy

I am considering purchasing a 2015 F150 as a dinghy so that I can put my Honda Goldwing in the pickup bed. Question is whether to get a 5.5 or 6.5 foot bed. I would prefer the 5.5 so that I could get the 2.7l turboboost (which does not come in 6.5 with the crew cab). Rampage has told me that their motorcycle loading ramps will work with 5.5 foot bed, but I am concerned about sway of the truck as I pull it down the road with so much weight (motorcycle is 950 pounds) behind the trucks rear axle. I would of course put air bags on the truck. QUESTION - has anyone pulled a short box F150 with a motorcycle in the bed? If so, any sway problems?
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Old 07-27-2015, 07:13 PM   #2
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I have a friend that pulled his full dress Harley in the bed of his short bed Chevy and he never had a problem.
Without a doubt that F 150 should easily handle 950 lbs.
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Old 07-27-2015, 07:36 PM   #3
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F-150 8' long box was no problem...I'd be surprised if the short be with Rampage ramp (which I think is a good idea rather than driving it on board BTW). Why air bags...it is a half ton truck??? JMHO
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Old 07-27-2015, 08:34 PM   #4
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I just went through ALL of this and actually will be picking up my new 15 Ford F150 4x4 CC 3.5 EB tomorrow......I got the 6.5 bed. I also haul a GL1800. I measured and measured, the wing from front of front time to center of rear wheel is 78", the F150 5.5 bed from front of bed to end of tailgate is 92". It will fit, but it is real close. The F150 doesn't need air bags to haul the wing, they have a payload of near 2500 lbs. I looked at the Rampage the cruiserlift the Triple D and anything else you could find. What I settled on is the Mountain Master (I have no affiliation to them at all).

There are a few reasons I went (or will be going) with them, weight for one is only #250, it's all aluminum, and you can get a hitch mount for it. I talked with the builder and he builds each lift for the order. You send him measurements that he requests and he builds your lift. He said he had done weight carring tests and his design allows for 40% in the bed, 30% on the tailgate and 30% on the receiver hitch, so no real weight on any part of the truck.

Now my other delima is that we intend to full time. So I needed to be able to easily remove the lift when we get to a sitting spot so that I would not have to drive with the tailgate open and the lift sticking out all the time. That rulled out Rampage. Cruiserlift is very easy to take in/out, but again after talking to Mountain Master I just felt they were it, pull two or three pins, slide it out of the truck and push it under the coach for storage.....again I'm not a salesman, just giving you information i have discovered.

Back to the truck, the 5.5 will work but the 6.5 is much better. The reason I say that, if you go back to the measurements above remember that on NONE of the lifts do they allow the front tire to be right against the forward edge of the truck. Also remember the measurement must take in account the top of the front of the bed is a shorter distance then at the floor level, so the ramp is pushed back for this distance so it can pass while going flat or rising. In all actuality what I found is the front tire actually sits between 4'-6" back from the forward bed wall. so add that to the 78" above and you are at 82"-86" to center of rear bike tire on a 92" bed. THEN remember all of the bike behind the center of the rear wheel and realize how much is actually hanging off the back of the truck. I am sure you have looked at all of this, but just giving the info I have found. I don't know where you are but finding a CC 6.5 Lariat in my area is like finding an alligator in AK. I have scoured, researched, searched, researched some more, searched some more and finally found one in Louisiana....I even went and looked at GMC, Chevy, and Dodge.....they are ALL 5.5 beds on the Crew cab trucks, they all actually call the 6.5 a long bed truck....lol

Good luck in your decision, personally I would go with the 6.5 for the added safety. If you want to talk offline give me a shout. Sorry it was a long post.
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Old 07-27-2015, 09:29 PM   #5
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Thank you all for your replies so far. I already have a Rampage. Purchased it a couple of years ago when I had a travel trailer. Worked great in the 6.5 bed of the Silverado I had at the time. I don't want to go to the effort and expense of selling it and getting a Mountain Master, although I recognize the benefits I would gain. The fellow in the Pacific Northwest who deals in Rampages can install it for me in a manner that allows easily unbolting it from in the bed (i.e., don't have to crawl under the bed), so I can take it out in two pieces, although i will need another set of muscles to help me. I live in Oregon, and although most of the F150 crew cabs sold new are 5.5 bed, there is still currently a good supply of enough 6.5 beds for me to choose from if that is what I decide upon. I would add air bags, because the installer told me he has installed the Rampage in only one 5.5 bed so far - a Silverado 1500, and the owner complained of sway until he installed the air bags. His explanation was that going over bumps, bridge abutments, etc. without the bags caused excessive harmonic motion in the truck which he said added to the tendency to sway. I am looking to see if the same holds true for the F150. I prefer the 5.5 bed because, 1) I like the gas mileage the 2.7 recorded when I test drove it, 2) I have no need for the 6.5 bed, 3) the 5.5 bed will fit in garage better, and 4) the shorter the wheel base, the easier for my wife to drive.
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Old 07-28-2015, 06:44 AM   #6
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We all have our reasons for doing what we do, just glad we have choices....lol The 2.7 looks like a good engine, it just wouldn't do what I wanted it to do. I have driven an F250/350 since the late 80's which most were diesels. Currently have 250 diesel 6.5 bed, so moving to a 150 for us is no big deal. we will be full timing, so a garage doesn't exist...lol Let me know how the 5.5 works with the GL, I was really close to getting one before I finally found the 6.5 but was REALLY worried that it wouldn't work after I got it. In all honesty I could have lived wiht that as I currently have a Cruiserlift on my coach so all would not have been lost.

Best of luck to you, let us know how it all works out.
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Old 07-28-2015, 12:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vulcangw View Post
I am considering purchasing a 2015 F150 as a dinghy so that I can put my Honda Goldwing in the pickup bed. Question is whether to get a 5.5 or 6.5 foot bed. I would prefer the 5.5 so that I could get the 2.7l turboboost (which does not come in 6.5 with the crew cab). Rampage has told me that their motorcycle loading ramps will work with 5.5 foot bed, but I am concerned about sway of the truck as I pull it down the road with so much weight (motorcycle is 950 pounds) behind the trucks rear axle. I would of course put air bags on the truck. QUESTION - has anyone pulled a short box F150 with a motorcycle in the bed? If so, any sway problems?
Vulcangw,
Well Sir, I kind-a went through all of that too when we were looking to change the way we hauled our Wing. We carried on the back of the coach, an Itasca Horizon 36GD with the C-7 330HP CAT on a Hydralift. It worked great but, a few things caused us to change our mode of operation. At the time we did this change, Ford, in it's infinite wisdom did not allow any of its F-150 fleet, in 4x4 configuration, to BE FLAT TOWED, AT ALL! So we ended up with an '11 GMC Sierra 4x4 Extended Cab.

That truck, has a 6 1/2' bed. I didn't even do any research on all the available lifts (which at the time was very limited anyway) at the time. We simply chose the Rampage. Brand new, they hover around $3,000 plus or minus. The DW was cruising around on C/L and found one about 300 miles away for $1,750. It was used twice. I called, we struck a deal and, I got it for $1,500. All I had to do was take a road trip and pick it up. No biggie.

I set that Rampage up to that it's removable in a matter of about 1-2 minutes. I also built a cart to keep it on when it's not in the back of the truck. I built that cart approximately 1" higher than the height of the bed of the truck. When it comes time to remove it, the bolts are all un done in 1 minute, the electrical is un plugged and, I grab the end of the Rampage and pull it out about 2/3 the way, I then lift it just enough for the wife to roll the cart under it.

The Rampage and the lift both have marks to align when I set it down on it so that it's in perfect position each and every time. When it's at rest on the cart, it's no longer touching the bed of the truck and, I just roll it way to its parking spot in the garage. Done.

Everything is reversed when it comes time to load it into the bed. Now, you made a comment that you'd have all "950 lbs." BEHIND the rear axle. Well, that's not exactly accurate. I'm sure what you probably meant was, 900 lbs. sitting in the bed, OVER THE REAR AXLE. That's quite a bit different than BEHIND it.

Now, the truck we have is the Z-85 Edition. That truck hauls our 900 lb. Wing without any issues what so ever. And NO, THERE IS NO WADDLING, SWAYING, IMPROPER handling of any type, while the bike is in the back of the truck. We have towed that scenario all over the Western U.S. and I constantly watch it in the rear camera. And, not only that but, there are many times when we disconnect the truck from the coach and do run-a-bout stuff, with the bike in the back and, it works absolutely perfect with no handling problems at all.

Sure, you're not going to run a slalom course at max speed with the big girl sitting in the bed of the truck but, normal driving is just fine. I forgot what the payload is for our '11 GMC but, as I recall, I'm way under the limit. I condidered the installation of air bags before we did the installation and put the bike in the back.

But, after loading it and, measuring the drop in bed height and, checking the handling while driving it, it was determined that there was no need to ad them and waste the money. That truck is not over taxed in any way.

I strongly suspect your new F-150 will be the exact same. Before you go spending money on suspension alterations, put that Rampage in there and load the Wing and see for yourself how the truck handles it and just how little it will squat. Ours drops 2 1/2 - 3" total. Big deal.

One more thing. For some odd reason, GMC built the tail gate on our truck in such a fashion that, when lowered, the surface of the tail gate is higher than the surface of the bed. Hmmmmm, imagine that. That would mean that 50% of the Rampage weight and, the Wings weight, would be on the tail gate, not the rear section of the bed. Not going to happen. So, when it comes time for us to haul the Wing, the tail gate is removed. Besides, you can't use it anyway since the Rampage is over it. Why haul it? Good luck on your new adventure. The Rampage is a great system.

One of the nice folks I spoke on RV.net who hauls a Wing too in the back of his truck says, he just carries a couple of foldable saw horses. When he get's to a camp destination that he's going to be at for more than a few days, he zips out the bolts on the Rampage and, he and buddy just lift out the Rampage and put it on the saw horses. That way he gets to use his truck as a truck while camping.
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P1010346_zpsd50105e7.jpg Photo by FIRE-UP1 | Photobucket
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Old 07-28-2015, 07:15 PM   #8
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I love the Rampage lift, however for me going to be full timing it is not the lift that I could use easily. That is what got me to looking at other options. Cruiserlift easily stays in the truck BUT you have ramps to deal with and store...not a huge big deal. Then I found the Mountain Master and the way you could mount it to your receiver hitch, combined with the small footprint and the light weight and decided that was my direction.

With all of the the OP was wondering about a 5.5 bed or a 6.5 bed. By measurement either will work, but the 5.5 will be CLOSE to the rear wheel sitting on the very edge of the tailgate. I still personally would go to a 6.5 bed length, but that is just my opinion. As for payload I don't think you will have any issues at all as the F150 has a payload of 2500# I believe, or real close. A GL at 900 and a lift is still less than half of it's payload capacity. As FIRE UP shows in his pics, the truck aint squating and actually looks good in a 6.5 bed.

I pick my new F150 6.5 up on Thursday, so hopefully in a couple months once I rebound I will be able to get a bed lift and haul that way instead of the lift on the coach.

BTW, FIRE UP, great job on the rolling table, looks good and is super functional. Just wouldn't work in my full timing desire.....lol Actually glad you included a picture of you bike loaded, was wondering what it looked like in a 6.5 bed. I won't take my tailgate off though and Ford has a flat gate and bed configuration.
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Old 07-28-2015, 11:09 PM   #9
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Thanks again for the comments. I have used the Rampage in two Silverados, 6.5 foot beds - a 2006 2500 and a 2011 3500. The rampage worked great for me on those trucks. My concern is that the installer told me (as I noted above) that a customer of his who had a Silverado 5.5 bed complained of sway behind the coach with the bike and Rampage in the bed, and that was not rectified until airbags were installed. Regarding the trucks payload capacity, all the F150 crew cabs with 2.7 engine and 5.5 foot bed for sale in my area have a GVWR of only 6,500 pounds. I took a test drive over the scales and the trucked weighed 5,000 pounds unloaded, leaving a payload capacity of 1,500 pounds. My bike and Rampage come in at about 1,300, with leaves 200 pounds for gear I plan on loading into the back seat area with seats folded up. For that reason, as well as the Rampage installer telling me the Silverado 5.5 bed swayed until airbags are installed, my guess is that I would need the air bags. I just want to make sure that the airbags do indeed prevent any sway.

Love your cart, FIRE UP.
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Old 07-29-2015, 07:19 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Vulcangw View Post
Thanks again for the comments. I have used the Rampage in two Silverados, 6.5 foot beds - a 2006 2500 and a 2011 3500. The rampage worked great for me on those trucks. My concern is that the installer told me (as I noted above) that a customer of his who had a Silverado 5.5 bed complained of sway behind the coach with the bike and Rampage in the bed, and that was not rectified until airbags were installed. Regarding the trucks payload capacity, all the F150 crew cabs with 2.7 engine and 5.5 foot bed for sale in my area have a GVWR of only 6,500 pounds. I took a test drive over the scales and the trucked weighed 5,000 pounds unloaded, leaving a payload capacity of 1,500 pounds. My bike and Rampage come in at about 1,300, with leaves 200 pounds for gear I plan on loading into the back seat area with seats folded up. For that reason, as well as the Rampage installer telling me the Silverado 5.5 bed swayed until airbags are installed, my guess is that I would need the air bags. I just want to make sure that the airbags do indeed prevent any sway.

Love your cart, FIRE UP.
Yep, you are correct, I didn't realize the 2.7 was that much less. From Ford site : 1640#, or 1960# with payload package for a 2.7 with 145"SuperCrew

I was looking at the 156.8" supercrew of the truck I got which is 2650# payload.
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Old 07-29-2015, 02:33 PM   #11
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FIRE UP, if you look at the profile of a 5.5 bed crew cab f150, you will see that the rear axle is VERY close to the front wall of the bed. As you know, you can't put the Rampage all the way up to the wall. Hence, once loaded in a crew cab F150 5.5 bed, the vast bulk of the bike and Rampage is behind the rear axle. Now, not being an expert in statics, I really don't know how much of the weight actually pushes down behind the rear axle, but it sure doesn't look good to me. BTW, I sent you a private message with several question particular to your motorhome and truck setup. Didn't want to bother others with questions not pertaining to this thread. I would really appreciate it if you could read the message and respond. Thanks, Dave.
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