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Old 04-15-2012, 07:58 PM   #1 (permalink)
farmall130
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Max 5th Wheel for a 2500?

As you can see, I have an LMM 08 2500 GMC. We are looking at 5th wheels, and I know this has come up before, but what can I comfortably tow? We have looked at one 34 footer, a 3400 Keystone, it weighs about 12,600 lbs. dry, with a pin weight of 2140. Also looked at a 33 footer, 11379lbs. dry and pin weight of 2160. Will the truck safely handle the heavier trailer? I know the experiences of others far outweighs what a saleman says, and I know the truck will pull it, just don't know about stopping it and how that much weight will handle. I rather ask and be thought stupid than buy one and BE stupid....

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Old 04-15-2012, 08:49 PM   #2 (permalink)
Drumaniac3000
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Start by looking at the Tire and Loading Info sticker located on or around the driver side door- that's the max payload of your truck as it came from the factory. Now subtract anything you have added to the truck, including hitch, tools, passengers, etc. from that number. The result will be your actual payload capacity.
Eg. 9200lb GVWR- 6800lb curb= 2,400lb total payload
2,400lb total payload - 3 passengers [450lb]- hitch [175lb]- junk [200lb]= 1575lb actual available payload

When looking at the trailers look more so at the GVWR rather than empty weight when gauging the appropriate truck size. Most likely when you add all of your stuff and fill the tanks (fresh, propane, etc.) the trailer will be close to the GVWR.

Assume 15-25% of that trailer GVWR number will be carried on the pin by the truck. Compare that pin weight to the max payload of the truck and see where you end up.

Eg. 15.6k GVWR x .15= 2340lb pin weight (lighter possibility)
15.6k GVWR x .25= 3900lb pin weight (heavier possibility)

1575lb actual payload << 2340lb or 3900lb pin weight possibilities

Either way you are over the truck GVWR, even 'empty' from the dealer it could be too heavy if you have some people ride along.

Just my $.02

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Old 04-15-2012, 08:56 PM   #3 (permalink)
71dsp
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^^ I'm ordering a new enclosed trailer, and I really want a GN; however the issue noted above is why I'm sticking with a tag-a-long with my 2500. If I had a 3500 SRW, it wouldn't be a problem. I'm not planning to buy a new truck anytime soon, so tag-a-long it is (plus a GN is $5k more!).
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:26 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Legally speaking, Drumaniac3000 is right. Practically speaking, your truck can handle either of those trailers.
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:37 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Someone else said it best, 3/4 ton pull behind and 1 ton 5er. I had the same question awhile back and ended up with another truck. After doing the math, just not enough room to play with.

How far do you plan on towing and at what speeds? Last thing you want to do is blow out a tire and risk some serious consequences.
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Old 04-15-2012, 10:04 PM   #6 (permalink)
turnpike
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Drumaniac3000.... good info and explanation.

I would like to suggest, that from that GVWR sticker on the trailer, you can get other info also. The axle weight limits are also shown there. On a two axle trailer, subtract the axle limits from the GVWR to get the rated pin weight.

Now the challenge..... try to load the trailer so the weights are less than the limits, and spread across the axles and the pin as shown above. If loaded correctly, that pin weight may work on a 2500HD. From my experience, fifth wheel trailers are very easy to load heavy on the pin or front of trailer. FYI, as pictured my unit is not over the GM suggested towing limit of a 2500HD, that being 22,000. But it is over the truck gross at 10,000 on a 9200 rating. That overage is on the truck rear at 6,000 on a 6200 rating. So, not over any axle rating, a matter that has been discussed at length on this form.
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Last edited by turnpike; 04-15-2012 at 10:11 PM.
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Old 04-15-2012, 10:19 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I agree also with Drumaniac3000. Legally there is no way your going to do it. With that said I myself tow with similar truck and trailer as you and I'm over GVWR on my truck just like most 3/4 tons. At least I know and understand that I'm over weight on payload and drive accordingly. And I'm never over on any axle ratings.
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Old 04-16-2012, 05:14 AM   #8 (permalink)
farmall130
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I understand what you guys are saying, but I see tons of people at campgrounds towing with 2500 diesels. I will try to do some figuring and see what I come up with. As far as distance, I might go as far as 500 miles, running 60-65MPH.
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Old 04-16-2012, 10:57 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I would look at a keystone cougar 318 sab dry pin wt is under 1600 LBS. If your looking for a bunkhouse the 293sab also has a dry pin weight of under 1600 lbs. I know everone is going to pipe in and say the actual values will be higher. But if you start out at a low number your chances are better. the 328qbs is also under 1600 lbs.
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Old 04-16-2012, 11:21 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by farmall130 View Post
I understand what you guys are saying, but I see tons of people at campgrounds towing with 2500 diesels.
That's because they believed the BS the salesman told them. I see overloaded 2500's running up and down I-35 all day long. Trust me, if you buy one of those 5'vers, you'll be looking for a bigger truck in the near future. Been there, learned the hard way.......

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Last edited by RedG; 04-16-2012 at 11:31 AM.
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