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Old 01-17-2018, 08:49 PM   #1
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Help- Is our truck enough

So confused at this point- Trailer life says our truck is adequate to pull the fifth wheel we are seriously looking at. The truck manual harder to understand.

2002 Chevy Duramax-short bed, CC 6.6liter V8 3.73 axle. How do I interpret the hitch weight and what the truck bed can carry?

Fifth wheel UVW is 12,100 GVWR is 15,000

We have been pulling a 8900 pound fifth wheel with no issues, not sure if this is too much of a jump. We do not want a new truck.
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Old 01-17-2018, 08:59 PM   #2
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Is that 2002 a 2500 or a 3500?
If 3500 is it SRW or DRW?
2WD or 4WD?

If 2500.........MAX 5th wheel towing weight is 12,000#
That is with a 150# driver and 20# cargo
Add anything else and that MAX Tow number goes DOWN and down and down


If 3500....
12,000# also if a SRW
15,000# if DRW...........again based on a 150# driver and 20# cargo.
Add anything and that MAX Tow number agaun goes DOWN and down and down
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Old 01-17-2018, 09:55 PM   #3
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I don't think chevy had a SB dually so 12k should be the max. I have the exact same weighted trailer. Pulled fine on very flat grounds as far as power with a 2500 ram with air bags. Air bags stopped working one day. Thought the truck was going to fall apart on I35. Bought a dually. No comparison and has an exhaust brake. Please don't tow with the unloaded weight as a pre calculation for your tow vehicle. I did that. Ended up closer to GVWR than I thought in the trailer.
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Old 01-17-2018, 10:04 PM   #4
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whats the payload on your truck? sticker in door jamb.
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Old 01-18-2018, 11:53 AM   #5
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Hi,ELDMLD, and and to our campfire.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ELDMLD View Post
So confused at this point- Trailer life says our truck is adequate to pull the fifth wheel we are seriously looking at.
Yes. Trailer Life publishes the tow rating, but the tow rating gives you only the max weight you can PULL, provided there is no weight in the truck but a skinny driver. Tow rating is never the limiter as to how heavy a trailer you can tow without being overloaded. GVWR is usually your limiter. If you go by the tow rating, you're guaranteed to be overloaded when wet and loaded on the road.

Quote:
The truck manual harder to understand.
The manual includes instructions as to how to compute GCWR. GCWR is used to determine tow rating. (GCWR minus the weight of the empty truck = tow rating).

Quote:
2002 Chevy Duramax-short bed, CC 6.6liter V8 3.73 axle. How do I interpret the hitch weight and what the truck bed can carry?
The only sure way is to load the truck up with everyone and everything that will be in it when towing. Driver, passengers, pets, toys, tools, jacks, campfire wood, charcoal and grill, installed 5er hitch, everything. Drive to a truck stop that has a CAT scale. Fill up with fuel then weigh the wet and loaded truck.

Subtract the weight of the wet and loaded truck from the GVWR of the truck. The answer is payload capacity available for pin weight.

Quote:
Fifth wheel UVW is 12,100 GVWR is 15,000
Pin weight of a 15k 5er will be about 20% of the weight of the wet and loaded 5er. To be conservative, assume the weight of the wet and loaded 5er will be the GVWR of the 5er. 20% of 15k = 3,000 pounds. So the most pin weight you should have is 3,000.

3,000 pounds pin weight will probably exceed your payload capacity available for pin weight. So you'll be tempted to cheat and use less than the trailer's GVWR as the wet and loaded weight of the 5er. 14,000 pounds 5er will have about 2,800 pounds pin weight. That's still probably more than the payload capacity available for pin weight.

Quote:
We have been pulling a 8900 pound fifth wheel with no issues, not sure if this is too much of a jump.
It's too much of a jump. I had a '99.5 F-250 diesel with GVWR very close to the GVWR in your truck. My 5er also had GVWR of 8,900 pounds and I loaded it to about 9,000. I was usually overloaded over the GVWR of my 3/4-ton tow vehicle by one or two hundred pounds during coast to coast trips from Maine to California and from Seattle to Key West, crossing all the mountain ranges in between. My only problem was blown out trailer tires until I upgraded the tires (and wheels) from ST205/75R15C to ST225/75R15D or E.

You need to weigh that rig on a CAT scale to see where you stand. Add the weights on the steer and drive axles and compare the total to the GVWR of your GM. You're probably very close to exceeding the GVWR of your Chevy with your current trailer, and you would be severely overloaded with the heavier trailer.

Quote:
We do not want a new truck.
Then don't buy more trailer than the old truck can safely tow, IOW, without exceeding the GVWR (and payload capacity) of the old truck.
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