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Old 01-16-2019, 08:25 AM   #1
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hitch: Side to side articulation limits

Im purchasing a fifthwheel soon (upgrading from a TT). My wife and I do a lot of boondocking off of fire roads. Fireroads are hit and miss on level. Many roads have burms and humps, and many humps are only on one side of the road...

Point is, with the TT, it was not uncommon that the trailer would lurch one way while the truck was lurching the other. With that said, I am interested in a fifthwheel hitch that has plenty of side to side articulation as well as front to back.

Can anyone tell me their knowledge on this? Please keep in mind, im not completely sold on the AUH, but I am aware of it and how it would suit this need. However, can we focus on standard fifthwheel hitches?

If it helps, im using a 2017 F350 longbed SRW (6.7). The rig... not sure yet, but looking for something around 14-15k in weight.
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Old 01-16-2019, 08:31 AM   #2
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Check out B&W. I don't know the exact amount, but I will run out of clearance between the bed and 5th wheel before hitch runs out of clearance. That may be your bigger issue that you need to look at.
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Old 01-16-2019, 09:59 AM   #3
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I also have the B&M, boondock a lot, never had an issue with the hitch. Only place I have come close to the the truck bed though is storing it on in my parents pasture, but never touched. I was actually more concerned with it tipping over than touching the bed, but Iím sure I was just over cautious. Never came close at any boondock locations.
The B&M can be adjusted up or down to give you more room. I just have mine on the middle setting.
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Old 01-16-2019, 10:21 AM   #4
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Pretty much all modern hitches have plenty of pivot now. Your truck frame and trailer frame will flex as well. You won't have any issues. Just have at least 6" of bed rail and tailgate clearance at the minimum distance. You may need more but you will have to watch the distance when you get into those situations. You may need to adjust to get 7" or more.


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Old 01-16-2019, 10:27 AM   #5
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You may want to look at Anderson. I have the Anderson Ultimate hitch which is essentially a raised gooseneck. There are plenty of YouTube videos on this hitch. Itís not only the articulation it allows while towing but itís also easier to unhook on an uneven surface. Given your camping style youíll be wise to also take into consideration the clearance between the 5er and your truck bed rails. Itís rather easy to come down on a truck rail when youíre on uneven ground. I have about 7Ē of clearance and so far Iíve not hit but have been close a few times.
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Old 01-16-2019, 11:30 AM   #6
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thank you!

Excellent point about the bed rails. Fifthwheels are a new beast to me. I clearly need to think in more dimensions than I did when towing a trailer.

I do like the concept of the Anderson. Will that work in the ford puck system? Also, will it work with a Flex Air Pinbox. I'm seriously considering one of those (FlexAir)for much of the same reason: boondocking. Id rather the impact of uneven roads be dampened than straight impact on the hitch and kingpin, which logically to me translates to stress on the frame of the fifthwheel.

We aren't full timers, but we only owned our travel trailer for 16 months before selling her for this upgrade. But in that 14 months, we went out 42 times, and two of those trips were several weeks long each (all boondocking). We used the hell out of that rig and anticipate the same or more in the fiver.
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Old 01-17-2019, 08:02 AM   #7
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Iím quite sure it will work with the Ford puck system. Mine attaches only to a Curt Gooseball. It isnít necessary to attack to all the pucks. I would suggest you call Anderson regarding your other question and watch the YouTube videos. There are many other benefits to an Anderson.
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Old 01-17-2019, 10:51 AM   #8
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JMO but 5th wheels are not nearly as compatible to off roading as a TT is. Height is one issue and bed rail clearance is the other. Besides the side bed rail clearance you will need tailgate clearance when hitting big dips in the road.
Also 5ers dont track like TT's do. They cut the inside corner a lot. That could be a little tricky in tighter turns where trees or brush are next to the road.

As far as hitches goes any of the nicer ones have side to side articulation. Andersen would be my choice for off roading.
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Old 01-19-2019, 12:56 PM   #9
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I have a Pullrite 16K auto slider and it has plenty of movement. Front to back and side to side. If your uncertain on what type of hitch to buy, utube the top 5th wheel hitches and go from there.
Good luck in your decision!��
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Old 01-19-2019, 08:02 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirrob View Post
Excellent point about the bed rails. Fifthwheels are a new beast to me. I clearly need to think in more dimensions than I did when towing a trailer.

I do like the concept of the Anderson. Will that work in the ford puck system? Also, will it work with a Flex Air Pinbox. I'm seriously considering one of those (FlexAir)for much of the same reason: boondocking. Id rather the impact of uneven roads be dampened than straight impact on the hitch and kingpin, which logically to me translates to stress on the frame of the fifthwheel.

We aren't full timers, but we only owned our travel trailer for 16 months before selling her for this upgrade. But in that 14 months, we went out 42 times, and two of those trips were several weeks long each (all boondocking). We used the hell out of that rig and anticipate the same or more in the fiver.
Pretty sure youíre not supposed to pair an articulating pin box with the AUH. If the pin box has a pivot, which an airbag equipped one would, youíre supposed to lock it out from what Iíve read.

Also, pay close attention to the top of tailgate clearance with your Super Duty, the top of the tailgate is about an inch taller than the side rails.

Consider a Reese Goose Box as another alternative to the AUH. Plenty of gooseball articulation, clear bed when not towing, air and shock absorption, no warranty exposure, and about 50 lbs less pin weight than a traditional pin box/5er hitch combo. Thatís what I run.
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