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Thread: Sidewinder

  1. #1
    Setting Up Camp
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    Sidewinder

    Hi all. Looking at the Reese Sidewinder pin box. Anyone out there using one? Or similar setup? The good and bad if youíre using it.
    Last edited by Michigan_Dreaming; 09-11-2021 at 06:22 PM. Reason: Clarification

  2. #2
    Rolling Along
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michigan_Dreaming View Post
    Hi all. Looking at the Reese Sidewinder pin box. Anyone out there using one? Or similar setup? The good and bad if you’re using it.
    I am using it with my setup.

    The good, is having the trailer pivot far enough back that I do not worry about hitting the cab of my truck. The street I live on is small, and my driveway from the street is initially about 5-7* up-slope, with that I am up to 70* turn and worried about the upper front cap that is not scalloped, hitting the truck, this doesn't. A sliding hitch would work, but I needed weight on the trailer (light front). Another is not needing to worry if the pin-box will hit the side-rail of the truck.

    The bad for me, is, no matter what I have tried, I can never get the wedge (correct one for the setup) in that tight. This can cause the feel of the trailer moving slightly sideways as the kingpin rotates (less then an 1/8"). I only feel when I am going on a curvy road, otherwise I don't feel anything.
    Last edited by Wileykid; 09-12-2021 at 07:25 AM.
    2023 Chevy 3500HD CC SB 4x4 Dmax
    2021 GD 320G with 8K axles

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michigan_Dreaming View Post
    Hi all. Looking at the Reese Sidewinder pin box. Anyone out there using one? Or similar setup? The good and bad if you’re using it.
    Have you purchased a sidewinder yet? I'm also thinking of purchasing a sidewinder. I'm currently using a Demco autoslider and it has worked great, but it takes up a lot of room in the bed and its heavy 300lbs. I have an aux fuel tank in the bed so i need to get rid of some weight. Also, looks like the sidewinder would free up a lot of storage room in the bed while towing.

  4. #4
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    Not yet

    I have not purchased a sidewinder yet. When I put out the query my Reese slider wasnít working. Reese stepped up and replaced the slide portion. Iím still thinking about purchasing one but doing more investigation. Iím not convinced that will be as stable as a traditional pin box with the pivot point moved back 22Ē (defeating the purpose of a 5th wheel rig stability IMO). My main motivation now would be to free up the area under the pinbox for my generator. Iíll give you a shout out if I decide to. Good luck with your endeavor.


    Quote Originally Posted by Maximus216 View Post
    Have you purchased a sidewinder yet? I'm also thinking of purchasing a sidewinder. I'm currently using a Demco autoslider and it has worked great, but it takes up a lot of room in the bed and its heavy 300lbs. I have an aux fuel tank in the bed so i need to get rid of some weight. Also, looks like the sidewinder would free up a lot of storage room in the bed while towing.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michigan_Dreaming View Post
    I have not purchased a sidewinder yet. When I put out the query my Reese slider wasnít working. Reese stepped up and replaced the slide portion. Iím still thinking about purchasing one but doing more investigation. Iím not convinced that will be as stable as a traditional pin box with the pivot point moved back 22Ē (defeating the purpose of a 5th wheel rig stability IMO). My main motivation now would be to free up the area under the pinbox for my generator. Iíll give you a shout out if I decide to. Good luck with your endeavor.
    I have had my sidewinder for 8 years and on the third trailer. I suppose I have over 100K miles towing with it and have had no problems.
    I take it apart every year and clean, the put fresh white grease on wear plate and trunnion.
    All good.
    Follow instructions and jam the wedge into hitch jaws, then unhook and torque bolts.
    2016 Ram 3500 SWD 3:73 Turbo Diesel 6'4"" box
    OEM puck Pro 16K
    2021 Reflection 311BHS
    Previous:
    2017 Reflection 29RS
    Reese Sidewinder Hitch
    Platte Lake MN.

  6. #6
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    Had one on my old Jayco 5th in my signature, and really liked it.
    A gorilla installed my wedge, and I found at times it was really hard to release from my Reese hitch. Removing it, and reinstalling snug, but not superhuman snug, resolved all those problems.
    You do have to learn to back in dead on straight to the pin box, which may or may not be square to the rest of the trailer. On my original, it was possible to "gunch" the box straight by hand. On my second, not so much.
    Be careful due to that issue, if you leave you tailgate down, and come in at an angle, the corner of your gate may make contact with the trailer. I learned fiberglass repair from that. We always backed in far enough to close the gate, then finished the backing, afterwards.
    BEWARE when dropping off for service. Our dealer put pins (bolts) in the box to prevent rotation, so he could use his tractor to move the trailer around his lot. I picked it up, hitched up and drove the 15 miles to home. There were more creaks and groans than I remembered, especially when doing the 90 into my driveway. Then discovered the pins when I couldn't unhitch...and the totally twisted entire pin box assembly on the trailer...and the destroyed Reese hitch. No place to pivot! That cost him all new, plus the flatbed to pick it up out of our drive, and inspection fees at a Ford frame shop to make sure we hadn't twisted the truck box/frame. He was right on it, fixed it all, and even loaned us his head mechanics personal one while he waited for parts to come in for the final install of the all new one. No camping missed.
    When I go back to a 5th, I'll make sure to have one.
    2017 Imagine 2670MK
    2012 F-150 SCrew, Eco, 4x4 6.5 box
    Max. Tow, HD Payload, Airbags, ProPride hitch
    (Previous: Jayco 26.5RLS Fifth, Revolution Pinbox)

  7. #7
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    There is a seller on ebay that is selling the Sidewinder premium with the airbag for 1800. Etrailer is selling them for 2600. This is the cheapest i have seen it. I can get one without the airbag for 1200. I don't know if the airbag will make that much of a difference.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by pnoetzel View Post
    I have had my sidewinder for 8 years and on the third trailer. I suppose I have over 100K miles towing with it and have had no problems.
    I take it apart every year and clean, the put fresh white grease on wear plate and trunnion.
    All good.
    Follow instructions and jam the wedge into hitch jaws, then unhook and torque bolts.
    Does your sidewinder have a jerky motion when rotating? Mine jerks especially after I have retorqued the cap bolts to 40 ft-lbs. It actually jerked while driving through a curve causing the rear tires of my truck to slide on wet pavement. I have cleaned and white greased the friction plates with no success in solving the problem.
    Tim
    2020 Reflection 320MKS, Sidewinder Hitch
    2003 2500HD Silverado Duramax, Sumo springs, Hawk Brake Pads

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    It seems that the actual pivot bearing needs to be disassembled and checked. Itís heavy, two people or a trans Jack to lower and check the Teflon seals and then white grease.
    Take out 4 bolts and cap and lower it.
    Good luck
    2016 Ram 3500 SWD 3:73 Turbo Diesel 6'4"" box
    OEM puck Pro 16K
    2021 Reflection 311BHS
    Previous:
    2017 Reflection 29RS
    Reese Sidewinder Hitch
    Platte Lake MN.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by pnoetzel View Post
    It seems that the actual pivot bearing needs to be disassembled and checked. It’s heavy, two people or a trans Jack to lower and check the Teflon seals and then white grease.
    Take out 4 bolts and cap and lower it.
    Good luck
    Mine doesn't have a roller bearing. It has a Teflon wear plate and the bore has a Teflon sleeve. The cap also has a Teflon ring.
    Tim
    2020 Reflection 320MKS, Sidewinder Hitch
    2003 2500HD Silverado Duramax, Sumo springs, Hawk Brake Pads

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