O.K. fifth wheelers. My wife and I are looking into trading for a fiver. Problem is the hitch weight. What does it end up being after the trailer is loaded? It seems to me that even a one ton truck will be maxed out by a 2200 lb hitch weight and say 2500lb of cargo added to it.
What am I missing? I see some really huge trailers are being towed by 3/4 ton trucks.
Hs any one weighed the hitch weight, starting with about 2000lb,adding cargo then weighing again? If so what was the end result? Salesman claims adding a thousand pounds would only increase pin weight by about 300lb. But I learned a long time ago not to believe salesmen.
Thank you in advance to any and all replies.
2000 F-350 V-10 SRW Super Cab, 4x4 Short Bed. Prodigy Brake Control, BilSteins, and Scan Gauge II! Full Timing 2014 Jayco Eagle Premier 321RLTS
I'm not a judge, it's just a nickname! "SEMPER FI"Vietnam 1968!Don't act stupid- We have congress for that!
Those pulling 5th wheels will have more specific info, but until they respond.....it depends where the weight is added as to how much it will affect the pin weight. Obviously, if the weight were added to the back of the rig, it could decrease the pin weight and if on front of the rig it will increase the pin weight. If the weight were added directly over the wheels it will be marginal in terms of affecting the pin weight. You are right, can't always believe the salespeople.
Again, those exerienced with 5th wheels will be able to be more specific.
The recommended pin weight percentage varies with the expert. One says it should be 20% while others say 14%to 18%. Personally I prefer the 14% to 18% as my pin weight is 18%. I have shifted more weight to the back of our rig to further reduce the pin weight. I need to reweigh to confirm that I've done some good. I'm doing this to reduce the load on the back of our truck.
USN RET. 2001 Diesel Dodge Quad Cab 2500 Auto w/4:10 rear end. Miller Mfg Truck Bed Cover, with RBW hitch, and a 1995 29' Automate 5th wheel with one slide
I guess I should have specified. What they are telling me is that if you put 1,000lbs in the cargo area, which is behind the hitch and and in front of the axles, it will add 300lbs. to the pin weight.
I guess nobody weighs their rig to see what all the cargo they carry added to the hitch weight. It seems to me if the pin weght is 2000 dry, by the time it is fully loaded for a trip it must be about four thousand pounds. All the stuff in the bedroom and the cargo area are right there at the hitch. If I knew a 3/4 ton truck would handle that it would indeed be the way to go . But I'm not even sure a one ton can handle that much.
As was stated previously, placement of the added weight affects the pin weight. If the load is added to the rear of the axles the pin is lightened. Forward of the axles, the pin gets heavier.
The stated weight of the trailer will not include any fluids, propane, or added options to the trailer. So if your propane tank(s) are in the front of the trailer, that will change the pin weight as stated by the factory. Many fivers have a rear freshwater tank, you know what that will do to the pin now.
This can be a difficult thing to judge (weight distribution) without knowing what you will be taking and the floor plan of the rig. The only true way to tell is to weigh the truck/trailer.
A number of posts have been made recently on how to weigh your rig. Do a search and you will find plenty of info on this.
You know I posted a similar question, our trailer weighs alone 8,500, truck alone 6,740 together 15,240. Pin weight when trailer and truck are hitched together 1,310 which they say is too light. Should be about 20% of trailer weight, from what I have gather from different postings. We have a 3/4 ton Ford CC diesel and not even sure of the weight limit on the bed of the truck. We put a ball in the bed of the truck which we pull our FW trailer with instead of the common FW hitch. I don't know if this makes any diffenence as to our pulling limit or not. We have never weight our trailer loaded but have learned over the years to load less and less. I asked in a posting what would be an opinion of what a family of 5 (3 children, 2 adults) would load as far as weight. Don't know. I'm thinking that next time I will hook up early and go and weigh the trailer and truck again.
2002 Trail Bay 30' FW w/gooseneck hitch
1997 F250 Ford Diesel CC short bed
Here's what we did: Got brochures and towing guides from Ford (250/350), Chevy (2500/3500), Dodge (2500/3500) so we had all the truck GVWRs, GAWRs, and GCWRs. And looked at 5vrs and got brochures with 5vr GVWRs.
For additional research, we also found sites like this and Ford-Diesel.com where we could ask questions and do searches and get estimates of actual weights of trucks with options from people like texatDurango.
We always worked with 5vr GVWR, not dry weight. For GCWR we estimated truck weight plus 5vr GVWR plus hitch, people, tools, etc. Published pin weights are for dry 5vrs, so for truck GVWR, we estimated pin weight = 5vr GVWR X 20% and added that to truck weight plus hitch, etc. Because we didn't want to go medium duty on the truck, that eliminated everything over about 12,500#s.
After looking at 5vrs, the wife and kid decided they wanted the biggest one we could get, and for us that meant we needed a dually (350/3500/3500)--the biggest one I could get!
From there we went with what we saw as quality and what we wanted in features. When we were close to what we thought we wanted, we double checked our estimates by posting them in forums like this.
Start to finish, I guess it took us one year to do our homework and decide. Of course we were first timers. You probably know already know what you want in quality and features.
Everyone says "go weigh it" that 's a great idea if you have bought it already. But how do I load it and go weigh it before I buy, so I can buy the right truck??? That is what I am trying to decide. And I know it depends on how and where you load, I just thought some of you would be able to say what your hitch weight was empty and loaded. Then I would have a better idea what I need. Thanks Tex I E-mailed you.
Judgerr, You sure are assuming some very heavy weights in your calculations. I weighed my rig on CAT scales two weeks ago with what we thought would be our camping load. The "drive axle" weight (which is the axle the pin weight most affects) was 5020 lbs. This past Friday I weighed again on the way camping and the drive axle weight was 5260 lbs. That was after we loaded a LOT more groceries, more clothes, MORE SHOES!, and more stuff. We had everything we would need to camp for a month!
I think you are either mis-judging your weight or just carry everything with you. You mentioned seeing lots of large trailers being pulled by 3/4 ton trucks, don't let looks fool you. Click on my photos link below and look at my trailer and tell me what you think it weighs! If you don't cheat and visit the web site, you'll probably miss by a few thousand lbs. I've got both the "brand new on the way home" empty weight and the "going camping" weights.
2006 Duramax Diesel 1 ton dually tugging around a 2006 Mobile Suites 36TK3 #2609. Retired and just travelling around now and then seeing the sights.