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Trailer is sitting "nose Up"


capt307

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Hello,

 

Just purchased a 2014 Primetime Sanibel and a 2014 GMC 3500 Denali. I have the Pull-rite automatic slider hitch installed for the standard bed. The head of the hitch sits very high and is not adjustable. When we first took delivery and it was hooked up I commented on the trailer sitting very nose up. I was assured it was fine and sent on my way.

 

Now that it is home I have adjusted the trailer king pin box up as high as it will go. This went a long way to helping level it but it is still off. I am estimating that I have about a 3' difference from to back of the trailer. I have no where else to adjust the height. I do still have 8" plus clearance between the bed rails and trailer which is good after adjusting the king pin. There is no adjustment on the shackles. I am going to the truck to the shop to see if it can be lowered a couple inches. We have not towed the camper at all yet except for a 20 minute drive home from the dealer.

 

Questions are:

1) If I leave this nose up a little like this how much of an impact will this have on things such as rear axel, wind drag and handling?

 

2) Has anybody else lowered the tow vehicle? Any issues or thoughts?

 

3) When hooked up the rear of the truck is measuring 1" lower than the front. Is this normal, acceptable or not an issue at all?

 

I would really like to bring that nose down 1-2". Anybody have any thoughts on this?

 

Heading out for the first time this weekend!

 

Thank everyone,

Scott

post-51639-0-58231900-1429727997_thumb.jpg

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Personally, I would want to bring that nose down and level out my tow rig. You're going to be heavy on the rear axle which is going to create uneven wear on your tires. Not to mention that a high nose is going to contribute to excessive sway on the road.

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I seem to remember that most fivers are set to ride at 45-47" kingpin height. If yours is level at that height in the nose, I'd consider a different hitch to get it closer. If you are going to tow like it is, I also would be concerned with rear axle weight (transfer).

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Trailer needs to be level or your are overloading your rear tires.

 

If the pin has been raised as much as possible then your options are:

1) Different hitch but if you are that far off, the bed sides won't allow a much lower pin.

2) Raise the trailer. Flip the axles from over the springs to under the springs

3) Get a different truck

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I do not have a whole lot loaded in the vehicle. Just basic RV'ing supplies that anyone would carry in the basement section. A few leveling blocks and boards and a portable grill up front. Specs say hitch weight is 2,500lbs. Getting a new truck isn't an option as I just bought this truck for this trailer and have a hitch in it already. 2 RV dealers did tell me that the newer Rams are the worst as far bed height.

 

I am questioning as to whether the dealer installed the hitch correctly since it is now setting the front and rear of the truck down equally. I did look at the horizontal adjustments of the hitch and they have it set as far forward as it can go. I did enquire as to other automatic slider hitched for standard bed trucks and was told that this Pull-rite hitch is the only automatic hitch on the market. Every other hitch must be manually released. True?

 

If I can flip the springs on the trailer axels does that cause any other issue and would it make to much of an adjustment. Does anyone have any recommendations as to who I could go to with this issue, other than the rv dealer that isn't concerned, to get this all figured out?

 

Since our driveway is sloped I am going to get it on semi-level ground this weekend when we take it out and get a better look and measurements. Ideally I would really like to just lower the truck height a couple inches. I would prefer that for all purposes.

 

The dealer told me it doesn't matter if it is nose high some but my common sense is telling me otherwise.

 

Scott

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Do not lower the truck, you'll have driveline issues if nothing else. Actually in your situation I would probably add air bags to the truck rear axle to get the truck back closer to level and that would make the fiver even more off.

 

Flipping the axles if it is possible with your rig will give you 3 to 4 inches of added height for the fiver. It will increase sway and lean on cornering and make the first step a bit taller than you may like. We did our first fiver and it worked for us but we'd sure rather gotten a shorter truck and skipped the flipping issues. If you do flip get it done right by someone that knows what they are doing, a bad job is an accident waiting to happen.

 

You probably want the fiver's pin centered over the rear axle when the hitch is in the locked (no pivot) position. Moving it forward can put too much weight on your front axle which is very limited in a lot of trucks. Check the truck's towing guide for the definitive answer on location.

 

Take them both down to a scale with full fuel tanks, your normal load of passengers and see where you sit on weight. Look at the truck front and rear weights as well as individual axle weights on the fiver. If you pick a slow time and talk with the weighmaster you'll likely pay under $10 for your first weight and only a couple bucks for any additional weights. If you don't set it up before weighing plan on the full price for each weight and have a grumpy weighmaster to deal with too.

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I had to put a bed on mine. We are tall with Teton. could not flip axles without being too tall. If you can stand to go up a few inches I would cut off axle mounts and weld tube steel in chassis and reweld hangers for axles. Would increase strength of chassis too.

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The most cost effective might be to rethink the hitch On the truck. If you can find a lower one without the trailer getting too close to the sides of the box ( you need at least 4inches, preferabley 5 or 6 ) it just might be the cheapest and easiest way to go.

 

I personally like flat decks and was considering doing that to my dually that would enable you to lower the hitch with a custom build and I feel it makes the bed on the truck more versatile as well as eliminating those high sides on the stock truck box. The flat bed also allows for some storage boxes to be added in front of the rear wheels.

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The dealer told me it doesn't matter if it is nose high some but my common sense is telling me otherwise.

You would think dealers are the best source of information wouldn't ya. LOL I would trust your instincts. Even a 1/4" downward can make a world of difference on how she tows.

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Look at your spring hangers, the very front and rear. If there are multiple holes you and move the spring to a lower hole raising the trailer. This would level the rv. Not all rv's have these. Another option is morryde IS.

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Back in 1999 I purchased a new F250 4x4. Ford had an after purchase program to lower the truck to 4x2 height on their dime. It solved a multitude of problems. The thing that started the sequence was the truck would buck when we tried to back up even slight inclines. The oem spacer under the springs caused the springs to wind up and release. Ford removed the spacers when it lowered the truck.

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Took the unit out for its inaugural trip this week end. Both the truck and trailer performed nicely. We were on some pretty hilly and winding roads getting there and back and I can't complain one bit about the towing.

 

I was able to park at a very level looking gas station and while there I visually inspected the overall levelness appearance and it looked pretty good. The nose of the RV was just up slightly. Don't think it would even be noticeable if you were not looking for it. The truck sag was barely there also.Again, if you weren't looking for it I don't think it would be noticed. I took a small level to the frame of the RV and the bubble was within the lines. I laid the level on the truck running board and it almost within the lines with the back just slightly low. I am going to do this again with a longer level as I only had the small one I carry in the RV. I also want to re-measure the truck fender heights again when on level ground to see if it is dropping the front and back equally. I believe that is the ultimate goal here correct?

 

I do still want to weigh it all. I will need to look for a place to do that. I am going to burrow an IR gun the next time I go out and check temps.

 

I do think that possibly the slope of my driveway wasn't the best place to be measuring and eyeballing it all as doesn't appear be nearly as off as what I thought and it handled beautifully for me.

 

The weekend did bring a whole new issue with my Lippert Hydraulic System failing for me.

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What concerned me the most with your picture was that it sure looks like the truck is overloaded at the rear. Be sure to get everything weighed and check the specs to make sure you're OK. Too much weight on the rear of the tow vehicle will lighten up the steering axle and reduce control. JMO.

 

Rich

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Weigh it first to see if there is a loading issue. It helps to have data to make good choices.

x2 it's quick and easy to get a per axle weight. Even CAT scales can give you this info.

Per tire weights take more effort.

 

Even though you are not yet fully loaded getting current weights will indicate how much work you need to do to balance the load on both axles. Later you can worry about Side to side imbalance.

 

IR guns are a gross measurement at bets and it takes some practice and multiple reading to get meaningful data

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  • 2 weeks later...

I think GMC has the tallest bed out there right now. At least this is what DRV told me. You might need to put 2 inch risers ,blocks on the trailers suspension to tow level.

That's what I did to our 40', Grand Junction(axles must be underslung). There is a down-side though, this places more strain and stress on the longer "U" bolts. One end of a rear axle came loose on Top-of-The-World highway, that side slid back about a foot, ruined the brake drum, brake shoes, bearings, and the axle stub had to be cleaned up to install the new bearing. That wound up costing us about $2,000 and 3 days awaiting parts from Seattle, and Good Sam ERS paid the two service calls from TOK.(60 mi each way)

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  • 1 month later...

After towing the unit 12 hours down to Myrtle Beach and checking it on level ground while traveling it all appears to be pretty level. I am not nose up like I thought and the truck was just very slightly down in the bag. The trailer was pretty close to level using a level. Additionally it handled like a dream. I don't think I need to adjust anything. This truck and 5th wheel combo gave me the most pleasant towing experience I have had with any of my units over the past 20 years.

 

Now my pull rite auto slider hitch is a a different story. It still bangs on starts and stops even though I have adjusted the tension bolt as tight as I can. I am not sure what is causing so much play. I'll be posting this in a separate forum for this subject. Couple other issues we had with the unit that I wi post questions to.

 

Thanks you all for all the tips and suggestions you gave regarding the "nose up" issue I started.

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