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Old 04-03-2014, 01:19 AM   #1
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5th Wheel Hitch Setup

I have a B&W Turnover Ball with the Companion for my 5th wheel hitch. My 5ver seems to be an inch or two nose high when hitched up and I wanted to get it closer to level and hopefully in the process make the axle loads more evenly distributed. I do have one inch of adjustment left to go down with the B&W pivot arms but I'm concerned then that electrical box on the back of my pin box may hit my bed rails and more specifically, my tonneau cover rails as I don't have much clearance there now as it is.

I'm thinking of asking my dealer to raise the pin box instead since I think that will get me approximately the same result of lowering the 5ver's nose about an inch or so. Anything in particular I should be concerned with in choosing one method over the other? I do currently have about 8-9" of clearance from the bed rails to the 5ver overhang so that's not really a concern at this point.
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Old 04-03-2014, 02:20 AM   #2
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I have the same hitch, I would try dropping the pivot arms another hole and see what your clearance looks like first. Both methods end up with the same effect. Where is your kingpin centered at? One thought about the clearance of the electrical box, you should have kingpin centered about 3" forward of axle( if memory serves), that may bring your pinbox inside closer(forward in bed). I say that because there's a lot of room for adjustment on these hitches and I have a lot of clearance on the rear of my pin box and tailgate.
BTW, thank you for your service. My Dad's retired USAF as well
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Old 04-03-2014, 10:25 AM   #3
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I just installed the same rig. B&w turnover ball and companion hitch. The installation went well, no probs, followed all instructions. On my 2012 F-350 DRW long bed, the GN post is 3" forward of the axle. Installing the companion, with the post in position 1' and the 'companion decal' facing the tailgate, as shown in the instructions, the farthest forward I can place the arms puts the kingpin of the 5er right over the center of the axle. Don't know how it tows yet, as I pick up my 5er trailer tomorrow. If I need, or want to move the kingpin forward, I will have to reverse the companion base. If you still have your instructions, look at the chart which shows fore and aft movement, and you'll see what I mean. BTW, I have the new 3500 companion which does not have the u bolts.
I'm gonna call B&W today, and see what they say.
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Old 04-03-2014, 12:09 PM   #4
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Thanks for your help.

So far, I'm not having problems with clearance fore and aft...but on tight corner back-up maneuvering the back of the extended king pin comes around to almost kiss the side rails of the bed. I lost about 2" of clearance on each side due to I have a Truxedo LowPro tonneau cover installed and the rails for it mount onto the sides of the bed rails and extend into the bed about 2". I think with the pivot arms at the current height the electrical box will clear the tonneau rails but if I lower the pivot arms to level the 5ver tow profile the electrical box may strike the tonneau rails or even possibly the side bed rails of the truck, especially if backing on uneven terrain.

I was hoping I could raise the pin box into the upper holes as an alternative solution to help bring the nose of the 5ver down while maintaining the current side rail clearance based on the pivot arms height. I'm just not sure if there is any reason to choose one solution over the other.
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Old 04-03-2014, 02:06 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thrilskr123 View Post
I have the same hitch, I would try dropping the pivot arms another hole and see what your clearance looks like first. Both methods end up with the same effect. Where is your kingpin centered at? One thought about the clearance of the electrical box, you should have kingpin centered about 3" forward of axle( if memory serves), that may bring your pinbox inside closer(forward in bed). I say that because there's a lot of room for adjustment on these hitches and I have a lot of clearance on the rear of my pin box and tailgate.
BTW, thank you for your service. My Dad's retired USAF as well
Thanks! We loved our time in the service although now it's nice to be able stay put in one location. We lived in 21 different houses during our 20 year tour.

My hitch was installed by the Ford dealer, the turnover ball part at least, and is dead center in the bed recess that is there for it in the newer model trucks. I installed the Companion following the B&W instructions & the king pin sits about 1" in front of the rear axle...but side-to-side clearance is where I'm having issues. I clear the rear of the extended pin box okay since it is angled up at about a 45 but right above that is the electrical conduit box for the pig tail. It also clears the side rails now if I'm backing on level ground but if I lower the pivot arms I'm fairly certain that either the back of the pin box or the conduit box will strike the side rails (mainly the tonneau rails) especially if in a tight turn on uneven ground.

Figured I could get the 5ver nose down a little by raising the pin box to the upper holes and still maintain my current side-to-side clearance height at the back of the pin box...but I found the pin box weighs about 150 lbs so it's not likely I can get it done myself...so would have to ask my dealer to move it. But, before I ask (and possibly have to pay for the service) I wanted to see if anyone knew of any towing issues that might be caused by raising the pin box & that might make me want to think twice about doing that. Bed rail to 5ver overhang clearance is around 8-9" so I think I'm fine there no matter which way I go.
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Old 04-03-2014, 04:33 PM   #6
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[/QUOTE]I wanted to see if anyone knew of any towing issues that might be caused by raising the pin box & that might make me want to think twice about doing that. Bed rail to 5ver overhang clearance is around 8-9" so I think I'm fine there no matter which way I go.[/QUOTE]

Raising the pin box sounds like it's your best bet, although it's a pain. My Dad had to raise his when he installed a sidewinder pinbox. He had no issues after that. 3 guys made it a snap though. But one thought, is the jbox the only thing clearance would be an issue with? Is it possible to relocate it higher up?
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Old 04-03-2014, 04:37 PM   #7
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Is putting a lift kit on the trailer an option?
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Old 04-03-2014, 04:39 PM   #8
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Maybe flip the axels
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Old 04-03-2014, 07:29 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ultraboy View Post
BTW, I have the new 3500 companion which does not have the u bolts.
Mine doesn't have the u-bolts either (thankfully) and the post installs in one of two directions based on whether or not the turnover ball part is located as it should be...or as in some trucks (Dodge, I think) the post needs to be reversed due to the turnover ball being set different to clear the axle area.

I haven't towed much with mine yet, maybe 20 miles, but it seems to ride pretty smooth, although I have noticed some minor chucking already...maybe due in part to the slightly nose high posture of the 5ver.

I think if I can get the 5ver more level it might help the chucking as well as balance the load more between the trailer axles.
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Old 04-03-2014, 07:37 PM   #10
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Maybe flip the axels
Not sure that's an option with the MOR/ryde suspension? But, even if I could, I think it would be too much since I only need the nose to come down an inch or two. I think I'm going to ask the dealer about raising the pin box. Appreciate the idea. I'll keep it in mind.
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