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fatherdoug 01-05-2016 01:51 PM

Newbie to 5th Wheel Setups
Well, we bought a good used 30' fifth wheel trailer for exploring the American west(and other parts) but I am completely unfamiliar with 5th wheel setups. I have a B&W turnover ball in the bed of the '89 and am getting a B&W Companion hitch to convert to 5th wheel.

I am assuming that backing up a 5th wheel is just the opposite of a bumper-pull - turning the wheels to the right will turn the 5th wheel to the right?

And what about the electrical connections? Am I better off getting a connection mounted next to the 5th wheel, or is it okay to run a cord from the bumper to the 5th wheel?

I found a dealer in Billings that will charge me $20 to mount the adapter. I'm headed into Billings tomorrow to get the dirty deed done. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

amkatt1 01-05-2016 07:30 PM

Doug, looks like there's not many retired guys on FTF with 5th wheelers to answer your question :scratch: I wish I had a fifth wheel trailer (then I could answer your question :D) but I'm 15 years away still from retirement, ack!smiliecrybaby

Fellro 01-05-2016 07:47 PM

I run gooseneck mostly, which is what the turnover ball is. For fifth you will either have to do a conversion which are available, but some manufacturers frown on, or get a proper fifth wheel hitch. Proper fifth wheel hitches resemble the saddles you see on semis.

Backing a goose or fifth is the same as backing a bumper, you just have a bit more time to respond to the changes. Also you can turn harder than a bumper will allow. You can nearly 90 a goose or fifth.

As to the plug, I have had the connection inside the box at the front, at the back, and in the bumper. The issue with in the bumper is if you run with a gate on it, you can have troubles with the cord. No gate, no trouble. I would not put a plug in the floor of the box, always keep them vertical.

fatherdoug 01-05-2016 08:17 PM

Thank you, Roger. That helps. I have a fellow retiree that converted a turnover to a fifth wheel for a trailer bigger than mine, and he is quite happy with it. Granted, that is only one case, though.

Roy, I wish you the best. :D

SuperCab 01-05-2016 08:22 PM

Well, your questions have pretty much been answered, but I will answer for fun, and to pad my post count towards 10k :D

Backs up the same, just slower. Takes more room to make the same move. Remember if it looks like it's time to turn the wheel you already missed it.

If your cord is long enough you can run to the back, but be careful with sharp (near 90) turns as you can tear cords, crack plugs, etc. If you have the option to put an outlet in the bed of the truck I would go ahead and do it.

You pulling this with with your Gen8 or ?

fatherdoug 01-05-2016 09:02 PM

Thank you, Frank. Glad I could add to your post count.......... Yes, I will be using the '89 F250.

SuperCab 01-05-2016 09:09 PM

Should be a cool looking setup when it's hitched up. Pictures are forthcoming I assume? :D

Also if you're not adverse to disclosing, what is the age and make of the 5'er?

fatherdoug 01-05-2016 09:16 PM

1996 Four Winds with a tipout. Got it for a song. Something about a divorce settlement........:D Used very little.

SuperCab 01-05-2016 09:24 PM

Nice! Looks like a nice unit as per google images :D

fatherdoug 01-05-2016 10:02 PM

Google is our friend.

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