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Old 08-26-2018, 11:11 AM   #1
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Ford Reese Elite 25K 5th wheel hitch

OK so a couple of days ago I bought a used 1 time Reese 25k Elite 5th wheel hitch from a friend of mine. It is the one that fits the factory puck system on ford and he bought it directly from ford when his F450 was new. Well he used it one time and sold the 5th wheel and it has been in his garage ever since. So he sold it to me at a great price and threw in the goose neck setup too. I was a happy camper until I saw someone mention that any hitch is great EXCEPT the Reese system. So I bit the bullet and asked him why? He said something to the effect that the clamp(?) bends and his trailer dropped to the bed of his truck while he was leaving his camp site.
So was this operator error or is there a problem with these hitches?

Has anyone had a problem with this hitch? In 3 to 4 weeks I an going on an 3200 mile round trip to pick up my new trailer and do not need any problems.


Thanks,
Steve
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Old 08-26-2018, 11:46 AM   #2
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I used the Reese Elite hitch for 6 years on my Ford diesel dually with no problems other then unhitching there was a nack to it. I had to put the truck in neutral to remove pressure off the jaw so it would open.

I bought mine new and made sure not to high pin it. Always have the ramps on the hitch and the hitch pin meet and push down the truck some. Open the rear window to hear a solid click as it hitches. There is a 'flag' that moves out of the way so the safety pin can be inserted.

I did have a little trouble keeping the jaw open when hitching. Seemed like a hair trigger, any bump on the truck and the jaws would close.

I towed about 16,000 miles with it. About 3 months ago I traded down for a F-250 to pull a travel trailer.
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Old 08-26-2018, 10:03 PM   #3
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Forgot to mention the hitch is heavy. Best to move it in and out of the truck with two people.
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Old 08-28-2018, 01:02 PM   #4
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I can not believe there are no other posts to this thread.
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Old 08-29-2018, 10:12 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by priv8pilot View Post
I was a happy camper until I saw someone mention that any hitch is great EXCEPT the Reese system. So I bit the bullet and asked him why? He said something to the effect that the clamp(?) bends and his trailer dropped to the bed of his truck while he was leaving his camp site.
So was this operator error or is there a problem with these hitches?
I strongly suspect that what we have here is a failure to communicate.

Reese makes several 5er hitches. The Elite is the top of the line. I doubt he had an Elite hitch disconnect after it was properly connected and locked.

But the Reese "economy" 5er hitch called the Pro Series, and even some of the Reese 5er hitches that cost a bit more than the Pro Series but not nearly as much as the Elite, can be connected wrong and thus drop the kingpin on the pickup bed. Yes, that requires gross operator error, but it can be done.

But the Elite has a different locking system around the kingpin that you would have to be really stupid to connect it so it would disconnect without you purposely unlocking and disconnecting the jaws from around the kingpin.

But even with the cheap Pro Series, don't blame Reese if you drop the kinpin onto the bed. Blame operator error in not properly connecting and locking the jaws of the hitch around the kingpin.

Nobody makes better 5er hitches than the Reese Elite - Unless you want an automatic slider for a short-bed truck. I don't think Reese makes an automatic slider, so if you're a forgetful old man like me but you want to tow a 5er with a short-bed truck, then you want a PullRite SuperGlide.
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Grumpy ole man with over 60 years towing experience. Now my heaviest trailer is a 7'x16' 5,000-pound flatbed utility trailer, my tow vehicle is a 2019 F-150 Lariat 3.5L EcoBoost SuperCab with Max Tow (1,904 pounds payload capacity).
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Old 08-29-2018, 10:27 AM   #6
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The Reese Elite has one massive jaw. I painted the the bottom ring of my 5th wheel hitch white. I also painted the back side of the big jaw white.

That made it very easy to see it was hitched correctly. What would happen sometimes is in hitch jaw would not go far enough around the pin...but when this happened you could not put the safety pin in the hole in the 'flag'. If you moved the truck 1/2" front or back the jaw would then engage fully.

The head pivots 4 ways so you have a bunch of articulation to keep the connection solid.

The Reese Elite looks much more beefy than a lot of pics of hitches I see on this forum that members think are great.

Again 16,000 miles, no failure.
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Old 08-30-2018, 07:06 AM   #7
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Thanks! Finally someone said what I was thinking. Operator error! I was thinking no way is this coming out if you have the safety pin in and give it a 'tug test' Just need to be sure.
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Old 08-30-2018, 07:51 AM   #8
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Three things that can go wrong when connecting a 5th wheel or any travel trailer.

1. Rain messes me up.

2. Too much help messes me up.

3. Wife is mad for some unknown reason messes me up.
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