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Thread: hitch weight issue

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    hitch weight issue

    I made the mistake of purchasing a truck based on the total weight of the 5th wheel and have figured out that I am over on CCC by about 500lb hitched up and with the 5th wheel loaded. My question today is has anyone done any counter balancing with weight on a 5th wheel? Like adding 300lb to the rear of the frame? Unfortunately its a rear living and the basement and cargo holds are in front of the axels. When I use the only tank behind the axels (fresh water) as ballast it only takes off 120lb. I has a rear hitch, I could add 300lb there bit I would have to put it on and off every trip, I would rather do something perinate. Any thoughts? I don't want to move to a DW set up if I can get away with it..
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreddieD View Post
    I made the mistake of purchasing a truck based on the total weight of the 5th wheel and have figured out that I am over on CCC by about 500lb hitched up and with the 5th wheel loaded. My question today is has anyone done any counter balancing with weight on a 5th wheel? Like adding 300lb to the rear of the frame? Unfortunately its a rear living and the basement and cargo holds are in front of the axels. When I use the only tank behind the axels (fresh water) as ballast it only takes off 120lb. I has a rear hitch, I could add 300lb there bit I would have to put it on and off every trip, I would rather do something perinate. Any thoughts? I don't want to move to a DW set up if I can get away with it..
    Unfortunately, I don't believe you'll be able to counter balance enough to make up for the weight difference with 300 lbs since that isn't going to do much at all. I would think finding ways to reduce weight between the axles to be more effective, but hard to do as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FreddieD View Post
    I made the mistake of purchasing a truck based on the total weight of the 5th wheel and have figured out that I am over on CCC by about 500lb hitched up and with the 5th wheel loaded. My question today is has anyone done any counter balancing with weight on a 5th wheel? Like adding 300lb to the rear of the frame? Unfortunately its a rear living and the basement and cargo holds are in front of the axels. When I use the only tank behind the axels (fresh water) as ballast it only takes off 120lb. I has a rear hitch, I could add 300lb there bit I would have to put it on and off every trip, I would rather do something perinate. Any thoughts? I don't want to move to a DW set up if I can get away with it..
    So if I read this correctly, you are over your payload capacity for the truck? If so, the only way to remove a lot of weight off the truck is to change your hitch to either an Andersen or I believe Pullrite. These two weigh substantially less than a standard hitch. Second, don't load anything in your truck other than people. Any cargo needs to go into the 5th wheel. Move weight in the 5th wheel from front to rear but don't go over the axle rating. Realize that this only removes a percentage of weight from the pin. Having a real living will make it difficult but you could strap down some cargo on the sofa or floor if there is room. Not sure of your exact numbers but I believe a 350/3500 SRW can handle this payload although a dually makes for a stable ride.

    You might be able to achieve your goal or get really close to it, either way, I believe 200lbs over will not hurt your truck in the long run. Enjoy the new trailer....
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    Thanks for the reply's, I believe I am gong to be inducted into the infamous Two Time Tow Vehicle club.
    2021 Grand Design Solitude S Class 3540 GK-R
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreddieD View Post
    Thanks for the reply's, I believe I am gong to be inducted into the infamous Two Time Tow Vehicle club.
    I've been there, done that myself. First truck I bought for towing a camper was without any knowledge of towing dynamics on my part. Second truck I bought (See my signature) was after lots and lots of research, asking questions on forums like this, and digging in and learning about what all goes into properly mating a tow vehicle and a trailer....in my case, a very large 5th Wheel Camping trailer.
    2016 F350 CrewCab Dually
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    Thanks, I have have been a mechanic and worked around 18 wheelers, I check the tow weights and has 20 min discussions about the tow ratings, it was the CCC and GVWR that got me, I had no clue that a truck that could tow 19K on a 5th wheel could not support the ccc and GVWR.. Live and learn..
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreddieD View Post
    Thanks, I have have been a mechanic and worked around 18 wheelers, I check the tow weights and has 20 min discussions about the tow ratings, it was the CCC and GVWR that got me, I had no clue that a truck that could tow 19K on a 5th wheel could not support the ccc and GVWR.. Live and learn..
    That part gets a lot of folks and here is the reason why. Truck manufacturers will tell you tow ratings and GVWRs along with all the other numbers....Payload, FAWR, RAWR, GCVWR, etc. And when they list those numbers, they are NOT lying....they just don't tell you the rest of the story. The truck that will have a tow rating of say 19,000 lbs will in fact be able to do just that. But NO WHERE in the their info do they say it will pull a 5th Wheel Camping type trailer....they simply say TRAILER. So if you are buying a camping trailer, you would normally be looking for towing capacities for a "Camping Trailer"...but their info that gives tow ratings doesn't say a 19,000 lbs camping trailer...it just says trailer. So if you hook up to a tandem or triple axle flat bed or utility type trailer and load up a heavy piece of construction equipment, say a skid steer loader for something like that and the load and the trailer total weight is 19,000 lbs, it will certainly tow it. The difference is, that trailer can be loaded in such a way on the trailer that the equipment is further back on the trailer and doesn't cause the trailer pin weight to make the truck overloaded as far as payload capacity. With a 5th Wheel Camping trailer, most of the time the pin weight is going to be at least 20% of the total trailer weight, and many times it is more....22, 23, maybe up to about 25% of the trailer weight. And, there really isn't much you can do to change that. With the flatbed trailer, you can move the load further back on the trailer and lessen the pin weight on the truck....you have options. With a 5ver Camping trailer, the loaded trailer is what it is, based on where you tanks are, your storage compartments are, and other things. So that's where they get you, they tell you the truth, but don't clarify all of the facts that go with it.
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    Agreed, it's only half the information they give you, I specifically validate it would tow a 5th wheel with a GVWR or 10600. CCC never came up.... I know better now.... Thanks for all the replies!
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    @xrated is spot on. You'll notice whenever the Big Three advertise their towing capacity in commercials, they always show a flat bed gooseneck trailer loaded with either a piece of construction equipment or construction supplies, or a larger boat on a bumper pull. Never an RV... Marketing!

    John
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreddieD View Post
    Agreed, it's only half the information they give you, I specifically validate it would tow a 5th wheel with a GVWR or 10600. CCC never came up.... I know better now.... Thanks for all the replies!
    By default, the manufacturers expect you to KNOW that you should never exceed ANY of the rated capacities involved with towing....GVWR, FAWR, RAWR, GCVWR, Payload rating, Tire Load Capacity, etc. And if you read through the owner's manual of any brand of vehicle made, they will clearly state that which I've stated in the previous sentence. Part of the problem is actually twofold..1. Many people do not read the owner's manual. 2. You are normally not in possession of said manual until after you buy the truck....even if you do decide to read it. Then, there is the third factor, some people simply do not know how to apply all of the numbers to be able to come up with a "proper" match of tow vehicle and trailer. And BTW, I have never faulted anyone for not knowing how to use the available numbers to figure out the truck's actual towing/hauling capacity....we've all been there at one time or another. In fact, I try to go out of my way to anyone that asks questions about that subject....I've been there and didn't know the first thing about how to do it and what they all mean.

    So what it all boils down to, when considering ALL of the weight ratings and capacities that I mentioned above......is that if any one of the capacity ratings are being exceeded, that should throw up a Red Flag, and you may want to consider getting a smaller trailer or a larger truck.

    One of the "generally accepted" methods of doing a calculation for matching trucks and trailers is to ALWAYS use the GVWR of the trailer (5th Wheel Camping trailer) and multiply that weight times 20% to 25% of that weight and that will be your calculated pin weight for the trailer. Then, you always have to consider the "other" weights that will be added to the pin weight.....the weight of the 5ver hitch, any and all passengers that may be in the truck, plus anything and everything else that may or will be in the truck....toolboxes in the bed with tools, maybe some firewood, maybe extra fuel or an aux. tank. ALL of that counts against the truck's available payload.

    Here is an example, based on the trailer that I own. GVWR of 20,000 lbs...so at a minimum of 4000 lbs of pin weight if the trailer is fully loaded. Hitch..175 lbs, passenger...115 lbs, aux. tank and full of diesel fuel...505 lbs, crossbed toolbox with tools...165 lbs. All of that totaled up is getting pretty close to 5000 lb of needed payload. My truck has just under 5300 lbs of payload, so technically, I'm good to go. It's probably closer to the payload limit than I would prefer, but I'm definitely not over any of the ratings.....plus the fact that my trailer has never been loaded to the full 20,000 lb GVWR. I'm normally in the 18,500 to 18,700 lb range when loaded.
    Last edited by xrated; 02-04-2021 at 06:12 PM.
    2016 F350 CrewCab Dually
    2018 Momentum 394M....Got it!
    2019 Can Am Spyder RT
    Excessive Payload is a Wonderful Thing

    "If it ain't fast....It ain't Fun"

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