Looking at 5th wheels and I have question. We ride motorcycles and dont care so much for the toy haulers. Would it be possible to have a extended flat bed with the bikes behind the cab, and a 5th wheel trailer? Thanks for any input, Cman.
Every day is a good day to ride, just some better than others.
1997 Fleetwood Flair
Towing either a 24 or 14 ft trailer full of motorcycles
Very unlikely with a class 1 or 2 truck,you need to be ahead of the rear axle with the hitch and it will not leave much room for bikes .
I have seen what you describe on MTD and up(hitch behind axle)
I have pictures if you want.
someone on the forum did just what you are talking about using a dually. they had a custom flat bed made using a bike loader that are sold to load a bike in the bed of a pickup only had it adapted to the side behind the cab and used a auto slider hitch so as you turn the hitch slides back to privide enough clearance for a bike. I assume it worked . A search on hauling a motorcycle might find the post.
An extended wheelbase truck would do just the trick!!! You could purchase a new or used cab/chassis model truck that had a 10' bed or even longer, then stuff the bikes sideways on the truck.
That's what I thinking. A truck with say a 14ft extension, maybe like a single car hauler platform. Just kinda thinking out loud. Not to worried about getting around, as for the last 11 years have been using a 28ft Rv with a 24ft enclosed trailer. Thanks, Cman.
I have an F350 dually cab/chassis truck that has long wheelbase length. It is a regular cab truck with 84" back of cab to rear axle frame length. The truck has an 11 foot long by 8 foot wide flat bed on it.
There is about 6-1/2 feet of bed length between the gooseneck hitch and the headache rack behind the cab. Plenty of room there to load a large street bike or a pair of dirt bikes and pull a fifth wheel at the same time and still be able to turn the trailer, without using a slider hitch. If using a slider hitch, a 4 wheel ATV could be loaded behind the cab.
By comparison, my other F350 with 8 foot long bed pickup box has 56" back of cab to rear axle frame length. So the flat bed truck has 28" more bed length forward of the rear axle than the long bed pickup has. Since the flat bed is 8 feet wide, it can easily carry a full length motorcycle across the back of the cab.
The overall wheelbase length of my flat bed truck is actually 7" less than the wheelbase length of my similar year F350 crew cab long bed pickup. The crew cab long bed pickup has 168" wheelbase length. The regular cab 84" chassis truck has 161" wheelbase length.
The cab/chassis truck turns very slightly sharper than the pickup, due to it's slightly shorter wheelbase length, since both trucks have the same 4wd front axle in them and wheel cut angle is the same for both trucks. In actual use, I can hardly tell a difference in maneuverability between the 2 trucks.
Yes it is easy enough to get a long wheelbase truck, Ford sells them in regular cab and crewcab, but for whatever reason not the extended cab.
I would be looking for some sort of bike loader with a rack or platform to load the bike onto it, then it is winched up into position on the truck. This would allow loading and unloading without the need to disconnect the fifth wheel if you have it along on the trip. And it might allow a lower loading height, if you get a truly custom bed.
If you already have a regular length dually, it is easy enough to extend the frame, it is done all the time on frames that are not heat treated (IE not on a GMC with heat treated frame).
I even considered taking a 158" wheelbase E-350 or E-450 and adapting that to tow a fifth wheel, by building a handicap accessible passenger space, and having a short as possible flatbed just over the rear axle. This would allow more space than a crewcab for the passenger compartment, accommodate a wheelchair passenger, and still be able to turn around in a supermarket parking lot.
You might also consider a cargo liftgate, yes it is possible to have that mounted to the side of a truck, or a flatbed. It would require a special shape to the flatbed, as the lift normally extends about 6" from it's mounting point, and the flatbed would be manufactured with the correct cut out on the front passenger side to fit the lift into that cutout.
One of those 10' long about 3' wide aluminum loading ramps, like for a u-haul truck, would work good for loading the bike on the flat bed. Hook the ramp to the side of the flat bed, ride the bike up the ramp.
Would be a good idea to have a wheel stop or short section of side bed wall on the opposite side so the bike can't accidentally ride right off the other side of the bed.
I used to ride my bikes up my ramp into the bed of my pickup, just hit the brakes before the tire runs into the front bed wall.
There are also those front wheel dollies for motorcycles you can use to winch the motorcycle up the ramp. Towing companies that haul motorcycles on their tilt/slide carrier bed tow trucks use those dollies to winch the motorcycles up the tilted carrier bed.
the only problem i see with it is the possible legal aspects of the flat bed. i say with the flat bed you could move the axle back and make extra room without making it a lot longer. noone says that you have to have X amount of distance behind the axle. you might want to think about something a little heavier depending on the weight of the bikes.
2000 K3500 CCLB DRW 6.5 TURBO
2009 Cougar 320 SRX
2007 atlas 24 auto hauler
1987 GMC origional low miles