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How to Tow a 5th Wheel Trailer with a 2004 Ford F-350 with a 6-3/4 Foot Bed

Question:

Can I tow a 5th wheel RV with a 2004 F-350 1ton 6.0 power stroke turbo diesel short bed?

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Expert Reply:

Yes, you can tow a fifth wheel trailer with your 2004 F-350 short bed. The short bed of your truck is 6-3/4 feet long which mean you'll want either a sliding fifth wheel hitch in your truck or a Sidewinder or Revolution pin box on the trailer to make sure you have adequate clearance between the truck and trailer when making sharp turns. This is because the truck's short bed will not always provide enough space between the truck cab and trailer and they can make contact.

A Sidewinder or Revolution pin box moves the pivot point of the trailer back 22 inches. I've attached an article that explains this in more detail. If you want to put a Sidewinder pin box on the trailer I can recommend the correct replacement with your current pin box's model number.

A sliding fifth wheel hitch is kept in the its normal location the majority of the time but can be slid back in the truck's bed when more clearance is needed to execute a sharp turn. This way the trailer's weight is normally placed over the axle of the truck for best support except when the turn needs to be made. Then the hitch is slid back into the driving position over the axle.

Some hitches slide manually and you will need to get out of your truck to engage the slider. Then get back in your truck and execute the turn. After making the turn you will then need to get back out of the truck and reposition the sliding hitch. Other hitches slide automatically so there is no need to get out of your truck to engage it. You just make the turn and continue driving on your way. Auto sliding hitches are obviously much more convenient however they do cost more and are often quite heavy.

To install any hitch that uses industry standard rails in your F-350 you can use the custom bracket kit # RP50082-58.

The Demco Hijacker Autoslide # DM8550034 slides automatically as you make turns. It installs using # DM8552006-71 for the bracket kit.

expert reply by:
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Charles S

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