Coast Resorts Open Roads Forum: Fifth-Wheels: Pin weight calculations
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Sunnyside42

USA

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Posted: 09/10/13 09:52am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Apologies if this is posted elsewhere, but didn't find anything via searches.

We're eventually planning to move up to a 5er in our next rig. As I'm putting together our short-list of campers, I want to track pin weight. My goal is to keep us in the 250/2500 class TV.

What should I be using as the pin-weight percentage? 20% or 25%? I did a rough read through on the "What's your real weight" stickied thread and I'm seeing most less than 20%. Is that a good percentage? Is 25% being too conservative?

*aside* - I see a lot of talk about new light-weight 5ers, but we'll still have 4 passengers and a full tank of fuel. I don't see that working out for the foreseeable future.

*edit* readability

powderman426

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Posted: 09/10/13 10:02am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I can't say if its right, but 20% seems to be a good starting point. I live near a coal tipple so it only cost me $5 to get weighed with and without the trailer. At the end of the day I think that is the only way you will know for sure.


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45Ricochet

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Posted: 09/10/13 10:12am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Mine is roughly 24%


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12thgenusa

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Posted: 09/10/13 10:16am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The problem is that it is a range from 15% to 25%. Mine is right at the low end at 15-16%. Others will be at the high end. Depends on the configuration, tank location and how you load it. For example, if you take a 10k GVW trailer, the pin weight might be 1500 to 2500 lbs. Quite a range. You really have to know the pin weight% for the trailer you are looking at.

In general, the pin weight% will stay the same loaded as unloaded (probably not for Toy Haulers). Calculate the dry weight or shipping weight pin% and apply it to the GVWR. This will get you very close to a maximum pin weight.


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mdamerell

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Posted: 09/10/13 10:21am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

20-25% is a rule of thumb. Mine actually runs around 22%. Depending upon the age of you 250/2500 will greatly effect the amount of pin weight you can carry. New trucks have a much higher rating than say 6 years ago. Don't forget to factor in the weight of the hitch (200#?). Guess I would look at the GVWR of the trailer (dry weight is useless)and take 22.5% of that. If the truck will carry that your good to go. Example: say your truck can carry 2,000# after you add the family, fuel, hitch etc.... 8,000# trailer x 22.5% = 1,800# pin.

If you don't have the truck, many will find the trailer they like then buy the truck to match (what I did). They make 5r's that a 150/1500 is suppose to be able to pull so you can probably find what you want. Many these days seem to run in the 12,000 - 16,000# GVWR range. Maybe a 350/3500 SRW would be more applicable.

Happy hunting [emoticon]


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Me Again

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Posted: 09/10/13 10:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you do not yet have the truck, then look for a 350/3500 as mdamerell suggested. It will give you more room for pin weight within the factory numbers and in most cases more or better rear springs, so you will not be adding air bags to level it.

And as Dave said, calculate the dry weight to pin weight and apply that the the GVWR of the trailer and you will be close.

Chris


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Sunnyside42

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Posted: 09/10/13 11:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks everyone for the responses. I'm glad to hear I wasn't too far off in my initial understanding.

We're still in the exploratory phase, so I agree with MDamerell in finding the right trailer then truck. Right now we're focusing on the smaller 5ers. Mostly rear bunkhouses under 13K GVWR. Based on that I *think* we would still be good for a 250/2500 class TV.

Chris - checking the ratio of dry-to-pin weight is genius. It didn't occur to me that the ratio of overall trailer weight to pin weight is consistent.

Cheers,
-Brian

Me Again

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Posted: 09/10/13 11:45am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just so you understand. I tow a 12,400 pound fifth wheel with a Dodge Std Cab 4x4 Diesel rated to 8800 pounds. The truck weighs in at the mid to high 9000's with the trailer in tow(7K ready to tow with driver). As someone else pointed out most older 250/2500 4x4 diesel will be easily over the GVWR for the truck, but under the RAWR. The RAWR is what I watch carefully.

Another example would be an early 2000's Chevy 4x4 ext cab Duramax. Ready to tow with a driver it is around 7400 pounds, with a 9200 GVWR. So it has room for 1800 pounds of pin weight and extra passengers. Fords are similar.

Chris

RCMAN46

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Posted: 09/10/13 02:44pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The more the pin weight the better the trailer will tow provided the TV is able to handle the pin weight. The big guys (18 wheelers) run 30-40% for a reason.

Michelle.S

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Posted: 09/10/13 03:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Don't short change yourself on the Truck. While a 250/2500 may work for the 5er you're looking at now, if in a few years you decide to go bigger you'll be looking for a new TV for the bigger RV. We were only looking for a 2500 a few years ago, but couldn't find what we wanted, but the Dealer had a 3500 Diesel Dually with all the options we wanted and for a better price than ordering a 2500. Didn't need that big a TV at the time, but when we decided to move up to a 5er we weren't limited by our TV. Just something to think about since you don't have a TV yet.


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