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Old 09-28-2010, 12:14 AM   #1
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Iam considering the purchase of my first trailer.The half ton series Cruiser CTX is a strong possibility.

I have gotten some conflicting info regarding the use of an extended cab short bed pickup with a fifth wheel.

I am leaning toward a Toyota Tundra PU. or a 1500 Chevy/GMC.

Has anyone got any advice??
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Old 09-28-2010, 12:57 AM   #2
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There are SO many postings regarding 1/2 ton trucks and towing.The most common thought is NO! Regardless of what is said most 5th wheels are just too heavy to be towed safely with a 1/2 ton. Manufacturers will state that so and so can tow X amount. The main number your need to know is the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating). That is the weight of your truck (usually more than 5,000 lbs), a full load of fuel and passengers with cargo. You need to know the pin weight of the 5ver you are thinking about. The pin weight is usually about 20% of the weight of the RV either empty or full. The smallest CTX 5ver has a pin weight of 1,642 pounds. Loaded to advertised capacity the pin jumps to 2,360 pounds. Say the GVWR of the Tundra is 8,200 pounds you would be close if not over empty. When you start loading up the coach you will be WAY over. Same with the Ford. I tow a Cruiser CF31QB with an '09 Silverado 2500HD Duramax diesel and would not want any more weight on that truck. The 2011 Chevy and Ford 3/4 ton diesels have monster towing capacity, equal or more than 2010 one ton versions of the same trucks. For the sake of safety and the family you should go with a 3/4 ton truck. I have yet to see a 1/2 ton towing a 5ver.

As far as a short bed: A sliding hitch will work well. One thing to remember is that a standard 5th wheel hitch weighs over 100 pounds. Adding sliding rails and you double that weight....more to deduct from the GVWR.

Art and Karen
2013 Itasca Sunstar 35F, 2013 Ford C Max toad.
170 nights in 2013
132 in 2014
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Old 09-28-2010, 03:32 AM   #3
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My dad tows a 5th wheel with a 1/2 ton Dodge. It does OK but he does not go far and he stay's on flat ground. That being said I think it was way under powered but other than that it was OK. We used it to tow our 29RE before we put any thing in it,,,, WOW was it down on power lol.

I tow with a short bed and have only had to slid mine once, you have to watch but it can be done and it's not that bad.

I vote for the Chevy, The other truck you mentioned I would stay away from. They are not built to do what you want to do with them.
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Old 09-28-2010, 04:15 AM   #4
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In 1989 I started towing a fiver with a GM 1500 EC short bed. Only mistake, the 3.42 axle ratio. Back then slide hitches didn't exist, only choice was the extended pin box that located the pin right at the front of the fiver. Max turning angle was around 65 degrees, never had a problem. New fiver in '96 and new truck in 2000 with a 3.73 axle ratio. I had the option of getting a slide hitch but stayed with a fixed position hitch.Moved to a bigger fiver in 2001. Still never had a problem with the setup, even towing at 9000 ft. altitude. There are definately weight and power limitations when using a 1/2 ton. My 2000 GM had a GVWR of 6200 lbs with 285 HP and 325 lb-ft and the biggest fiver was 27 ft mid profile, 5000 lbs dry, 6550 lbs GVWR and a 950 lb dry pin weight. But I also had a 40 gal. aux. tank.

Today's 1/2 ton trucks are much improved and many of today's fiver are heavier, but with attention to details, it is still possible to put a package together. With a short bed, bed length is not important. Instead, pay attention to the C.A. (Cab to Axle) distance, the longer the better to maximize turning angle (hint: GM is longest, around 42 inches).

While I have had a 3/4 ton diesel for 7 yrs now, I still have towed more miles and made more stops with those old 1/2 ton rigs than what I have now.
Larry Day

Texas Baptist Men-Retiree Builders member since '01
13 Silverado 3500HD D/A, 2wd CCSB srw, custom RKI bed
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Old 09-28-2010, 06:24 AM   #5
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I have towed 22,000 miles with my 1/2 ton Tundra with no problems. My truck has the 6&1/2 ft box. You do need 10 ply tires and amaybe air bags.
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Old 10-03-2010, 12:14 AM   #6
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It'd be one thing if you already had the truck, but if you need to purchase a truck why get one that MAY work? If you end up trading up it's gonna cost you. If you buy a 1/2 ton and have to replace tires and suspension parts, maybe a rearend,any savings will be reduced.......and you still have a 1/2 ton. I'd op for a used 3/4 , or more used if the budget required. You'll read a ton of stuff about not having too much truck, it's true. You will understand when you start pulling. My trailer is 8000 dry, my 2500 Yukon does well, but I've stood on the brakes and it ain't fun. When I fulltime in 5 years, I won't even "mess" with a pickup, it'll be at least a mid-duty!
Tom&Denice, Carmel,Betsy, Brighton&Daisy(Rescued Cockers)YukonXL 2500 8.1 4:10 CT31GR
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Old 01-18-2011, 11:36 AM   #7
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I think that when it comes to the bed trucks, brands like jotto and the like would be a good fit in your vehicle's needs. In that way, you would be able to really get things done and make it look better.

Edited by: armandjones82
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Old 01-18-2011, 11:57 PM   #8
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We have a friend that goes camping with us that has a Tundra short bed and large 4 door cab.

They went and looked at buying a 5<SUP>th</SUP>’er and were told they can’t tow one with their truck.

Also they tow a TT and their mileage is really bad. Around 8 and in the wind maybe 5 to 6.

If you want something that will tow anything you might buy , get a Ford or Chevy diesel ? ton or 1 ton.

We have a 2006 Ford F350 power stroke dully long bed crew cab with a Bigfoot camper which weights about 5000 pounds and also a 2008 F250 power stroke extended cab long bed and pull a Sunset Trail and we get around 10 to 13 mpg and if I slow down some I can get better.

No trouble in the mts up or down for they both have Tow/haul which is really worth the money and built in Brake control which I really like.

I have towed many miles with out these things being built into the truck and just added on and there is a big difference.

Sunset trails, 2008 F250 Power Stroke, Bigfoot truck camper on a 2006 F350 Power Stroke dully, Houston, Texas
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Old 01-19-2011, 05:18 AM   #9
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They now mack a slider hitch for the 51/2 ft crew cab. They always made one for the double cab. I must have 27,000 miles towing my 5er.
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