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Old 05-22-2014, 06:33 AM   #1
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Reese 5th Airborne Sidewinder Pin Box

I have a dodge 3500 Crew Cab with a 6'4" bed which is considered a short bed. I am thinking about changing the pin box on my 5th wheel to a Reese 5th Airborne Sidewinder for both smoother towing and up to 90 degree turn angles without taking off corner of truck and 5th wheel. I am new to this game as I had a Class A motor home before the 5th wheel. Anyone have experience with Reese pin boxes?
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Old 05-22-2014, 07:04 AM   #2
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What size/model is your 5th wheel. If it is a profiled front, you will find there isn't a huge or regular need for it. Something automatic like the sidewinder pin box or the actual automatic slider hitch like the PullRite Superglide can take the worries away if you feel you are going to get in a tight turning situation regularly.

I have used my Reese Elite slider hitch once in two years so I haven't seen the need for an automatic. A good pin box like the Demco or Mor/ryde are designed to reduce chucking. Again, with our unit, we have not had an issue with that and just have the TrailAir RotaFlex pin box with rubber cushioning. With air bags up in the truck we don't get any chucking. I also have a short bed, but the box is slightly larger at 6'9".

The 5th Airborne Sidewinder is a relatively new product and I haven't heard/spoke to anyone who has used one before.

Knowing what size / weight of trailer would help with some recommendations. Have you purchased a hitch yet? Just trying to get an idea of your whole setup.
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Old 05-22-2014, 07:33 AM   #3
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Grand Design Solitude

The 5th Wheel will be a Grand Design Solitude 16000 lbs GVRW and 35" 11" long. A Trail-Air Roto-Flex Pin Box comes with unit.
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Old 05-22-2014, 07:36 AM   #4
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Hunter 11 had one on his pp might chime in here
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Old 05-22-2014, 07:57 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gorgill View Post
The 5th Wheel will be a Grand Design Solitude 16000 lbs GVRW and 35" 11" long. A Trail-Air Roto-Flex Pin Box comes with unit.
Nice unit - kind of outside what we are towing in this forum. Similar floor plan to mine but the Solitude is more a full timer.

I would suggest you tow it once or twice before making your decision on changing the pin box. Have you purchased a hitch for your truck yet?
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Old 05-22-2014, 08:07 AM   #6
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No have not purchased hitch yet, just trying to figure all this out.
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Old 05-22-2014, 08:38 AM   #7
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The trailer has the eased front profile which increases your turning radius. Do you have the factory underbed mount in your Dodge? Even if you don't one of the best rated hitches is the B&W Companion - comes in a slider model. Obviously if you went with the Reese Airborne Sidewinder, the slider wouldn't be necessary. If this had been available when I bought my Reese Elite slider I would have gotten one of these instead. They make different models for the Ford and Dodge factory underbed mounts. Might want to consider a high quality hitch like the the B&W Companion slider with a Demco or MOR/ryde pin box.

Honestly, it really depends on the miles you intend to put on your unit annually. We tow about 6,000 miles per year.

You have a million choices and each unit has different characteristics when towed. For heavy units that get a lot of miles, many people go with something like the Hensley Air-Ride.

Obviously, you need to figure both the hitch and pin box out together because one depends on the other.

More questions - single or dual rear wheel on your Dodge? If SRW, you may want to consider air bags for your Dodge with that pin weight. Helps with the bounce and headlights blinding others with the sag in the rear.
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Old 05-22-2014, 11:05 AM   #8
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Yes we have (Since we still own it) a Sidewinder hitch on our old PP. Now I only own LWB trucks so I really did not need it for clearance when turning but it was a one off deal Crossroads did to see how it worked. I will tell you that I could turn sharper and back the trailer up like a bumper pull. If I did own SWB trucks I personally would go this route over a slider hitch.

We owned this trailer for 7 years and never had any issues with the Sidewinder. There are a lot of people on rv.net that bash them but they also don't own one and never have. They are just afraid of something that is different than the norm. When we first bought our unit I was able to speak to the guy that invented the Sidewinder, he told me that ours was rated for 16k but was actually good up to around 19k because they are over built.

Our new trailer was ordered with a Mor/Ryde pinbox and I have changed out my truck hitch to a Precision Custom Hitches 421. My wife cannot believe how much smoother this new setup rides going down the road.
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