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 > Moving to a 5th Wheel

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Lantley

Ellicott City, Maryland

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Posted: 06/08/21 07:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

In terms of set up and ease of use. I'm in the motorized RV camp. A motorhome will always be easier to set up and operate. The motorhome will generally be more expensive to own.


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FootSoldier

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Posted: 06/08/21 08:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

An automated leveling system is a must have for me. Having enough storage so that I don't have to haul a pickup bed full of the extras is highly desirable. Pull in, unhook the trailer, let the unit level itself, extend slides and awning, roll out a camp carpet outside, set up two chairs and a small table. Done outside.

Inside, it's all set up.

In our little hybrid; unhook trailer, level it, set jacks, fold out tent ends, then unload the truck. Generator, gas, wood, carpet, water, ladder. Then go inside; extend slide and awning, erect tent ends, move bed mattresses to beds, set up table. The setting up was always easier than the packing up.

Not a terrible hassle, just more than I want to do if we are going to move around much. That, and there is no pull over and go lay down for a quick nap or meal prep.

I was originally really attracted to the motor driven options. Then I could tow my Jeep. Besides the expense of having to own and maintain another running gear, I don't have any good storage options at home. I want whatever we buy to at least be covered under a shade structure. We live in the desert and the critters are hell on vehicle wiring when parked outside. The thought of finding $1000s of damage to a motorhome is not attractive at all.

The 5th wheel approach would represent a lesser upfront investment, get us into plenty of room and I'd still have a nice truck to use, and storing here at home would be much less concerning, considering that a trailer has so much less external wiring to be damaged.

It just seems like trailers are like homes, they're all built as cheaply as possible. So far, based on floor plan and package, I still like the Rockwood Ultra Lites. Under $50k and I'm convinced a 3/4 ton diesel would tow it fine. That counts too, because it would be a considerable project to get a 1 ton long bed into my garage. LOL!

I have looked at $80k and up trailers and they are amazing, but I can't see under the skin, so I am skeptical that we would get anything more than prettier finishes.

Am I close, or am I missing a bunch here?

Thanks all for trying to help!

Michelle.S

Western NY till fall, then Sebring, FL

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Posted: 06/09/21 07:23am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You can get a 1 Ton (350/3500 series) SRW Short Bed and be the same size as a 3/4 Ton, but would give you more cargo weight capacity if you ever went heavier/larger without buying another truck.


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Posted: 06/09/21 07:46am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

theoldwizard1 wrote:

Newer diesel trucks do NOT get the same fuel economy as older ones. Plus you have to add the cost if DEF and very expensive oil changes.
This type of gloom worked on me for a while - but since going to a CTD, nothing would ever bring me back. Lets talk about oil changes - they are less numerous than on a gas engine. Sure they cost a lot, but if you put some cash into a savings account here and there, when the time comes to have it done, your savings has it covered. I've changed oil twice in my 2018. Service dept at my dealer says to bring it in when the computer tells you that the oil/filter life is around 5 - 10%.

Fuel economy - my CTD gets better mileage towing the same fifth wheel than my previous 2018 6.4 Hemi 2500. Also is my daily driver and fuel consumption is still better when not towing.

DEF is cheap - especially at Walmart - you don't have to constantly put it in like fuel.

Get the diesel - you won't regret it.


Experience without good judgment is worthless; good judgment without experience is still good judgment!

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bucky

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Posted: 06/10/21 04:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

wanderingaimlessly wrote:

Your original post you mentioned wanting less work setting up, and more comfort, as well as approaching 69.
Look at a motorhome, ,,,,,
Less work setting up, put it in park press the leveling button, and connect water and electric as needed. Whats easier? ANY trailer will have more steps to go through.
Going to be there for a few days? Fine, disconnect the Towed to sightsee, in a smaller, easier to drive vehicle that can fit in small spots in small towns and parking lots, vs parking on the back 40 because the dually wont fit in a 8' wide spot or on a street with parallel parking only.
Dont get me wrong, there are cases where the big truck and 5er make sense, but your question opening with the 69 age, and wanting easier for your stops to me screams Motorhome A, C or whatever.


I agree with all of this, but especially about the workout setting up. There is zero difference between a TT and a 5er in that scenario. Our dually is a tow horse only but there are times.....


2005 Cummins 3500 2WD LB quad cab dually pulling a 2014 Blue Ridge 3025RL


Campinghoss@51

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Posted: 06/10/21 04:19am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We had a Sunnybrook fiver and then I decided to go Class A. It was a 40 footer dp. After several thousand miles the Class A did not suit our travel style especially after looking at the upper end of new fivers. New fivers have auto leveling systems, and honestly there is very little difference in setting up the newer fivers vs a Class A speaking from experience.

The advice on getting a truck first is definitely the way to start. I sold my F-250 and went with a F-350 dually so I could get the floorplan and the fiver we wanted. Diesel is something you will not be sorry you have. If fuel mileage and the cost of oil changes cause heartburn you probably need to rethink the rv lifestyle in general.

Do as much truck as you can first and then start your hunt for the perfect fiver for your family.


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schlep1967

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Posted: 06/10/21 06:27am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My advice, a lot of RV's/campers were sold last year that will be coming back on the market as the cruises and amusement parks reopen. I'm seeing 2021 units sitting in yards around my place with for sale signs on them. Watch the used market for a unit that will work for you.
As for the truck, in the length and price range you are looking you certainly shouldn't need a dually. Unless you happen to stumble on a really good used deal on a high end unit.
Auto leveling is great until it doesn't work. Our 2009 doesn't have it and I can be set up faster than our camping buddies with a TT with auto level. I use the Andersen Levelers to level side to side. Back into the site, place the levelers behind the wheels of the low side and back up until level. Drop the landing gear and unhitch. Push landing gear button until level front to back. Push another button until the rear stabilizers are down and tight.


2008 Dodge Ram 2500 Diesel
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StirCrazy

Kamloops, BC, Canada

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Posted: 06/10/21 07:01am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

valhalla360 wrote:

Second Chance wrote:

As for fuel mileage, with a 1-ton DRW truck with a 6-speed and 373 rear end, I get 17 - 18 on the highway not towing and 10 - 11 MPG towing a high-profile 15k (on the scales) fifth wheel.

Rob


Had an old ford with 7.3 diesel...got 20-22 not towing and 13 towing.

I noticed similar comparing to my BIL's 2008 ford diesel. He was down similar to what you report.

It doesn't sound huge until you consider the percentage difference...it works out to about a 20% loss.


I get better in my 2014 f350 than I did with my 1999 7.3. The 7.3 had 100 ftlbs more torque and 50 more hp, but the 6.7 out tows it hands down. as for the 6 and 6.4, they did get bad milage and other issues.

to the original poster, I have a 1 ton single rear wheel and I have 4500Lbs of payload but that is a specal order payload package and hard to find. if you dont mined driving a dualy then just buy one and you can towany 5th you find, but at least get a 1 ton over a 3/4 ton. you might find somthing thats in the capacity of the 3/4 ton but the extra stifness in the 1 ton is worth its weight in gold. plus up here 1 ton trucks are cheeper than 3/4 when you buy new as they are exempt the luxery tax.

Steve


2014 F350 6.7 Platinum
2016 Cougar 330RBK

FootSoldier

Scottsdale, AZ

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Posted: 06/12/21 09:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've been reading and trying to get on top of all the important aspects of our consideration, and I've been trying to keep my head because some of the 5th wheel trailers out there are so beautiful and easy to fall in love with. LOL!

Think we've solved the storage problem and will be able to keep the unit here at the house. We're going to build a covered parking spot out 30' or so feet from the house.

I really want to be able to garage park the truck and that is going to limit me to a crew cab/short bed truck. As to weight rating, that's what I need to know that I understand correctly?

Right now, my leading contenders for a truck/trailer combination is posted at 12,995 lbs GVWR for the trailer and the truck is listed at 11,300 lbs GVWR, with a GCWR capacity of 27,500. If I am correctly understanding, the total GCW of the rig would be 24,295 and be 3,205 lbs under the max rating of the truck.

My question; is running at 89% of GVCW rating too close to the safety line?

I would greatly prefer to own the 3/4 ton truck and have the trailer be under 35', both of the leading contenders meet those preferences.

As for love, the KZ Durango 301RLT has really caught my eye. Not too big, not too fancy, not too expensive, and just plain beautiful in my eyes. LOL! Maybe I'm already hooked?

StirCrazy

Kamloops, BC, Canada

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Posted: 06/12/21 10:09am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

FootSoldier wrote:

I've been reading and trying to get on top of all the important aspects of our consideration, and I've been trying to keep my head because some of the 5th wheel trailers out there are so beautiful and easy to fall in love with. LOL!

Think we've solved the storage problem and will be able to keep the unit here at the house. We're going to build a covered parking spot out 30' or so feet from the house.

I really want to be able to garage park the truck and that is going to limit me to a crew cab/short bed truck. As to weight rating, that's what I need to know that I understand correctly?

Right now, my leading contenders for a truck/trailer combination is posted at 12,995 lbs GVWR for the trailer and the truck is listed at 11,300 lbs GVWR, with a GCWR capacity of 27,500. If I am correctly understanding, the total GCW of the rig would be 24,295 and be 3,205 lbs under the max rating of the truck.

My question; is running at 89% of GVCW rating too close to the safety line?

I would greatly prefer to own the 3/4 ton truck and have the trailer be under 35', both of the leading contenders meet those preferences.

As for love, the KZ Durango 301RLT has really caught my eye. Not too big, not too fancy, not too expensive, and just plain beautiful in my eyes. LOL! Maybe I'm already hooked?


Combined GVWR is kind of a useless rating, what will matter for you is the payload capacity which you wont know exactly untill you have the truck and can scale it with a full tank of gas and the people normaly in the truck when you go camping. then you subtract this from the truck GVRW and you have how much more weight you can add to the truck overall. but you still need to get the axel ratings and what they weight also.

for example my numbers for my truck are

GVWR 11500lbs
front axels max 5600LBS
rear axels max 7000lbs

emptry measurements with full gas and me are

front 5093lbs
rear 3483lbs

measured with 5th hooked up full fresh water and gas and the crew

front 5093lbs
rear 6117lbs
trailer 9326 lbs

so my hitch weight was listed as 2100lbs but in reality it came in at 2634lbs but the important thing is my rear axel can still handle 883 lbs so I have room if I decive to put firewood or somthing else in there.

Steve

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