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Old 08-10-2016, 08:38 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by gfarmcafe View Post
We are planning on replacing our bumper pull trailer this winter with a 5th wheel. I want to test drive some, but don't know, and never heard of a dealership that will allow this. I will install the hitch and wiring so that won't be an issue. Presently, we own a 2500 HD gasser with 4.10 gears and want to keep it. I'm experienced with pulling goose neck stock and flat bed trailers but not with this truck. Will dealerships allow hooking and test driving their 5th wheels for sale? I doubt if we'll purchase one if I can't.
Every dealer that I have worked with when buying my three 5er's they would not allow a test drive of a unit. Why? Insurance reasons who will pay for the damages to a 5er if you do not own the unit. The dealer does not carry that type of insurance on a trailer for sale and you do not have insurance for that unit if you are just looking at buying.

Now I towed my first 5er twice with a gas engine truck and I told my DW that either we buy a new diesel truck or sell the 5er we just bought. You are kidding yourself if you think you can pull a trailer around 10,000 LBS and not use a diesel engine. My 6L Chevy gas engine would climb to over 2500 RPM's just to get the load to move and we could never pass a gas station without filling up the gas tank. Try pulling into a gas pump lane with a 5er that is 30+ FT long and at least 12'.6" high and try and maneuver this into a gas pump lane and out. Cars are zipping in and out and will not allow you the clearance needed to get in and out safely. My fuel mileage was around 6 to 7 MPG with a gas engine. I get between 10.5 and 11.5 MPG's when pulling a heavier trailer and taller 5er with my diesel engine truck.
just my $0.02
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Old 08-10-2016, 09:06 AM   #12
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Payload

Payload is 3595 lbs. Looking at trailers 26-32 ft weighing no more than gross 11,000 lbs with 2 slides max.
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Old 08-10-2016, 09:22 AM   #13
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Had a '06 2500 GM gasser with a 7k TT. Towed it 4 times before I traded the truck for a diesel. I've towed lots of different trailers, but hated to tow that trailer with that truck. My next trip out with the camper after I bought the diesel was to the dealership where I traded it in on a 5er!
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Old 08-10-2016, 09:52 AM   #14
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Don't know your truck in particular but by what you just said about payload I'm guessing you are well within spec for the size unit you are looking at. I towed my fifth wheel which is close to 15K loaded with a Ram 3500 with the 6.4L hemi and it had plenty of power. Granted, that power came with the price of the engine turning over 4,000 rpm on hills and entrance ramps, but it moved along pretty good. I am also at low elevation here and wouldn't even consider taking it into the mountains out west.

I traded my truck in recently for a diesel but not because I needed to. I am looking forward to getting out this weekend for the first time and enjoying the benefits like towing with the AC on (kids and wife, I prefer the windows), being able to fuel up at truck stops instead of praying I get in and out of gas stations, towing at low rpm's, and the exhaust brake most of all!

Anyway, I wold guess that most dealers aren't going to allow a joyride but if you are within the rating for the truck I wouldn't worry about it.
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Old 08-10-2016, 10:06 AM   #15
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My experiences seem to have been different than some.

I'm on my fifth, 5th wheel and was able to 'test drive' every one of them.

The first one I didn't even have a tow vehicle that had a 5th wheel hitch so the dealer allowed me to use their lot truck.

My third 5th wheel was enough bigger than the first two, that I wanted to be sure of the towing experience. Again the dealer allowed me to test drive (with my truck) before purchase.

The last two, I hooked up to and test drove just to be sure of the bed clearance/turning radius as I had traded trucks and it had higher bed sides.

I guess it depends on the dealer.
BTW... the five 5th wheels were purchased from three different dealers.
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Old 08-10-2016, 10:34 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by gfarmcafe View Post
Payload is 3595 lbs. Looking at trailers 26-32 ft weighing no more than gross 11,000 lbs with 2 slides max.

My first unit was a 2006 AMERI-CAMP M270RKS. This unit was 28'-8" long with one slide and weighed around 8,000 lbs loaded. This was the unit that I pulled with a gas truck and said never again, the 6L gas engine did not have the guts to pull it.
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Old 08-10-2016, 10:39 AM   #17
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Thank You everyone for your comments and I truly appreciate them. I'm not worried about MPG. I've owned and maintained both big block gassers and diesels for both work and camping. Both have their good and not so good points. What we're looking at is to live in one longer than traveling in one. We go to Florida for the winter and then the flat land of mid America where our family live. All I'm after is a dealer that will allow us to test drive one of their units. I'm not joy riding, nor purchasing another TV. We just want to live in one with more room. Is that too much to ask?
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Old 08-10-2016, 10:47 AM   #18
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this is an interesting question and one that myself others have discussed at CG's, at the dealers or with others. You can test drive cars, motor coaches, etc. but not TT, or 5'ers. Why not? Why not take it for a test pull to see if your comfortable towing it and how does your truck do it with. I get insurance, however, you test drive cars/trucks and motor coaches which are all insured the same way

Now, I test drove a 1500 a few years back and came home and hooked up to my TT and towed it for about 15 miles to make sure the truck towed it, and I was comfortable with the truck towing it.
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Old 08-10-2016, 11:30 AM   #19
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I recently traded in my ancient 1998 Wildwood 26'er. Back then they never even thought of the words "ultra light" or knew how to build that way. My 2004 Chevy Silverado 2500HD w/6.0 and 4.11 gears pulled it just fine. I still use the truck to tow a 10,000 gvw dump trailer loaded with sand on occasion.

Will a brand new "one ton dually diesel" pull it better? sure.

Question is. do you have the extra 75-80 grand to lay out on that new diesel in addition to the 50 grand for the 5er?

We owned the truck and the 5er outright, I got talking about motorcycles only to find out that they were on the DW's bucket list so we bought a pair. She doesn't like riding in urban areas, so we bought a transport trailer.

Once we started figuring out how we were going to handle towing the ancient 5er and the motorcycle transport trailer along with the cost, we chose a class "C" diesel motor home instead

Toy hauler - 95K plus one ton dually diesel - 80K = 175K

or

2017 MBS 2400W with all the goodies that gets 14 mpg towing the motorcycle trailer - 85K plus trailer 6K = 91K

and

we can get into most campgrounds because we are under 44' total

Everyone in their brother on this site loves spending your money. Remember that when determining how accurate their advice may be.

BTW, if you plan on using your 2500HD as a tow vehicle, put the 5th wheel hitch in it and then go rent a 5er and get a feel of what you want in one. the summer is almost gone and prices will drop.
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Old 08-10-2016, 12:21 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by RollingDownTheHighway View Post
this is an interesting question and one that myself others have discussed at CG's, at the dealers or with others. You can test drive cars, motor coaches, etc. but not TT, or 5'ers. Why not? Why not take it for a test pull to see if your comfortable towing it and how does your truck do it with. I get insurance, however, you test drive cars/trucks and motor coaches which are all insured the same way

Now, I test drove a 1500 a few years back and came home and hooked up to my TT and towed it for about 15 miles to make sure the truck towed it, and I was comfortable with the truck towing it.
Also the dealer that has told you your current TV can pull it stands to be corrected if it simply wallows down the road and needs more power. Understand the insurance, yes. But perhaps your insurance would cover you with your policy while you shop? Something else to "ask". And the salesperson isn't getting commission on the TV you will need to buy, just the FW he is trying to sell you right now! As long as you can connect and pull it off their lot, he considers your TV "just right" and will tell the next customer "...oh sure it will, I just sold this one to a guy..." Beware.
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