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Thread: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

  1. #16
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Yeah im not to excited about the fifth wheel and trailer double idea anymore. My new crawler should be done in a few weeks then i can sell my current jeep to free up some money. Im going to go with the flatbed goose neck and a pop up towed behind or mount it to the trailer. After researching there is more cons than pros and safety/family is number one. Thanks for all the input! so anyone with a flatbed they want to sell?

  2. #17
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Okay. Just remember with a goose neck trailer you can't tow double, legally.

    Have you seen the goose neck trailers that have a cabover camper mounted on the front and the jeep goes on the back? That's a cool set up, but $$$$

  3. #18
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Quote Originally Posted by ob1jeeper View Post
    Do some research on 5th wheel recalls, regarding the pinbox attachment to frames cracking. There have been a few instances of inattentive owners completely losing their trailers, and a bunch who have experienced damaged tow rigs. There are a few years/models of 5th wheels you may find which you will decide to steer away from, and for sure, whatever trailer you end up with, you will want to keep a close eye on the frame structure and pinbox area, on a regular basis on ANY 5th wheel (or gooseneck) trailer you tow, whether or not you are double towing...

    A little over a year ago, I purchased a used 25 1/2 foot "1/2-ton towable" 5th wheel, and on my first "check-ride" tow to Kingman (was not double towing), on the rougher areas of the road, I witnessed the front of the trailer moving up and down about 3/4-1 inch, in relation to the pinbox, accompanied by the the sensation of the trailer jerking the tow rig as if the brakes were grabbing in sync with the bouncing. I pulled over and looked, but did not see anything, so continued at a slower pace, keeping a watch on things.

    On the trip home, it got worse. When I got home, I again looked it over carefully, but saw no reason for this. After a thorough inspection, I STILL saw no reason for this to happen.

    I did a little online research and saw where others were experiencing some issues with pinbox-to-frame cracking. So the next day, I rolled my HD welding table under the pinbox, ran a chain over the end of the pinbox and tied off to the table, then using the landing leg jacks to raise and lower the trailer, alternately sitting the kingpin of the trailer on the table, then raising and pulling against the chain to lift the welding table (about 500 lbs worth of table) slightly, I was able to duplicate the movement I had seen when towing.

    after several cycles and using a high-powered light, I finally discovered the frame was cracked in about a half dozen places, both in the frame crossmember aft of the pinbox brackets, but also adjacent to the welds of the pinbox brackets. Luckily, I had been able to get it home, and make repairs before it became catastrophic.

    My buddy also bought a used 5th wheel of about the same size (but much heavier, and NOT a 1/2-ton towable), at about the same time as I did, and he too was feeling the sensation of the trailer trying to jerk fore-aft on rougher road surfaces. Upon inspection, we found nearly identical issues with his frame, so I ended up repairing both trailers.

    We both occasionally double-tow smaller trailers of about 2500-3000 lb total, including the toys (Side-bys, ATV's & motorcycles), but neither of us have had the inclination/guts to try towing a 5,000(+) pound vehicle sitting on a 2500(+) pound trailer behind the 5th wheel... yet...

    Not trying to scare you, just giving you a heads up...
    If you don't mind me asking, what year was your trailer and who made it?

    I had an Attitude by eclipse that had terrible frame issues. They did fix it, but it was years before I realized there was even an issue.

  4. #19
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Quote Originally Posted by OTR-93YJ View Post
    Okay. Just remember with a goose neck trailer you can't tow double, legally.

    Have you seen the goose neck trailers that have a cabover camper mounted on the front and the jeep goes on the back? That's a cool set up, but $$$$
    You can if you switch it to a king pin


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    MPGs? Real trucks go by GPM...

  5. #20
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Quote Originally Posted by redneck20 View Post
    You can if you switch it to a king pin


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    I believe you're correct, but I'm not real familiar with goose neck trailers. I just know the law says it must be a fifth wheel hitch.

  6. #21
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Quote Originally Posted by OTR-93YJ View Post
    I believe you're correct, but I'm not real familiar with goose neck trailers. I just know the law says it must be a fifth wheel hitch.
    Most GN trailers you can just slide the ball receiver out and slide the king pin

    http://www.adventurerv.net/gooseneck...-pi-14515.html


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    MPGs? Real trucks go by GPM...

  7. #22
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    It can always be switched to whatever you need it to be. I'll get serious here n the next month once my crawler gets finished and I know what direction I want to go in.

    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk

  8. #23
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Maybe some pipe and a tarp over my current trailer for now. Lol

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  9. #24
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Quote Originally Posted by OTR-93YJ View Post
    If you don't mind me asking, what year was your trailer and who made it?

    I had an Attitude by eclipse that had terrible frame issues. They did fix it, but it was years before I realized there was even an issue.
    Mine is a 2000 Coachmen Catalina Lite.

    Don't want to sound overly critical of design and construction of this RV, but it was owned since new, by a now 90-something couple who towed it to-from Oregon once a year since new, behind thier 1/2 ton (V-6) Chevy PU until 2009. With advancing age, they elected to not tow that far any longer, and it sat unused for a few years, before putting it up for sale in 2013, and I purchased it in early 2014, and set about cleaning it, new (mattress, linens, etc.) and performing some minor repairs (a couple cracked or missing lamp lenses, water seep/leaks of plumbing like toilet seals, faucet seals, etc.).

    Since I did not yet have a hitch in my truck when I purchased it, the former owner towed it to my house (about 4 miles) for me. After getting the hitch, I discovered that the entire trailer sat too low to be towed behind my 3/4-ton (without bed-to-trailer contact, and a serious case of "tail far-to-low" ride attitude). I corrected that by replacing the axles with heavier duty 3500# axles and 15" tires (original were 2800#, with 13" tires), and doing a "spring-over" conversion.

    FWIW: I am not impressed with the frame design (particulary in regards to the pinbox-to-frame structure) of this or any of the recreational 5th wheel RV's which I have inspected. Nor am I impressed with the light guage (too thin) of frame materials used in this critical area of the two trailers which I have had the pleasure of repairing.

    I have added close to 250-300 lbs of heavier guage steel tubing to the frame, not only in the forward frame where it attaches to the pinbox, but for the entire length of the main rails, to help reduce frame "beaming", and better support the aft rack which I constructed to mount a Honda trail 90, some firewood, a hitch for double towing small trailers, etc..

    If it were not for the length of trailer I'd end up with being unwieldy for many of the available RV sites, (not to mention access to fuel stops, etc), I'd mount this camper on a decent quality gooseneck with about 16-18 ft of decking aft of the camper for towing the toys on...
    Last edited by ob1jeeper; 06-24-2016 at 08:57 PM.
    Working for a living is highly over-rated...

  10. #25
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    My buddy jeff does it all the time with a fifth wheel and a boat.

  11. #26
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Take a look at the Forest River Work and Play trailers. You can get them with an 18' garage with living quarters, usually sleep around six adults.

    I will be doing a similar route when I get back from Japan next year, except I am doing a 25' BigTex Gooseneck with truck camper attached to the bed. The sides are going to be enclosed allowing for an increase in water and fuel capacity plus lockable storage. You can get the Gooseneck trailer for around $7,000 new and the truck campers range from a couple grand used to $12,000+ new. The only thing I have not yet decided on is my tow rig, still debating between 5.9L I6 Cummins, 6.0L V8 PowerStroke, and 6.4L HEMI (new).


    2005 Jeep Wrangler TJ Unlimited Rubicon

  12. #27
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Quote Originally Posted by Demlockian View Post
    Take a look at the Forest River Work and Play trailers. You can get them with an 18' garage with living quarters, usually sleep around six adults.

    I will be doing a similar route when I get back from Japan next year, except I am doing a 25' BigTex Gooseneck with truck camper attached to the bed. The sides are going to be enclosed allowing for an increase in water and fuel capacity plus lockable storage. You can get the Gooseneck trailer for around $7,000 new and the truck campers range from a couple grand used to $12,000+ new. The only thing I have not yet decided on is my tow rig, still debating between 5.9L I6 Cummins, 6.0L V8 PowerStroke, and 6.4L HEMI (new).


    That was my first thoughts. I'm not a huge fan of those truck campers though. They cost way more than anything else. And we need room to sleep 5. I like the idea of a pop up on the front, cheaper and sleeps more. Easier to remove with a fork lift when I need it off. I'll keep this thread alive in the next month or two with what I do.

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  13. #28
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    I thought of the popup option as well, however, it has to many drawbacks.

    The average popup is at least 14' long before being opened, which means they measure around 30' opened. The popup cannot be mounted flush against the gooseneck since it must be opened; it must be set roughly 8' behind the gooseneck. Because of this the trailer must be at least 38 feet long (8' in front of popup, 14' for popup, and another 16' for the Rig).

    On the other hand, you can mount the truck camper directly against the gooseneck as the sleeping quarters will sit on top (as shown in pictures). With this setup you only need a 25' trailer vs. 38' trailer (9' for camper and 16' for Rig). Even though the footprint is only 9' you have a usable space closer to 16' as the bed is raised higher. A nicely designed truck bed camper can sleep four adults comfortably. However, I have seen some that advertise sleeping for six adults.
    2005 Jeep Wrangler TJ Unlimited Rubicon

  14. #29
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    Sep 2009
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    Re: 18ft Trailer behind fifth wheel?? Doubles!

    Toyszukijon used his p/u and GN 30 FT camper and flat towed 1 of his 3 rigs to Montana/Wyoming area every year to hunt with his dad and brothers!
    And his p/u was just a 1/2ton!
    Of course it needn't be said he was an awesome mech and fabricater!
    Im back to the drawing board
    STAY TUNED!

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