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Can Curt A16 Head Replace Curt M20 for 2017 Ram With Puck System, and Sidewinder for Lippert 1116

Question:

TV - 2017 RAM 2500 with 6 foot 6 inch box and factory installed tow package pucks and OEM RAM M20 Hitch with legs - see pic 5er - 2018 Montana High Country 345RL with Lippert 1116 King Pin I need more clearance between my truck and fifth wheel but cant afford the added weight of a slider. But I have several questions that I cant find the specific answers to online. 1. Since my M20 hitch is not compatible with the sidewinder, can I use my current legs and simply buy the C16520 A16 head to get a clean bed compatible replacement hitch with minimal cost? My current legs appear to be identical to the C16021 legs that could be bought with an A16 hitch. This setup would also appear to be slightly less weight than my current OEM hitch, which is great. 2. Can you confirm the RP31016 wedge kit would be the correct sidewinder wedge to use with this A16 hitch? 3. Both the RP61410 and the RP61412 sidewinder appear to add length to the king pin, about 5.69 inches for the 10 and 3 inches for the 12, and therefore push the trailer a little farther back from the truck, which obviously helps with clearance all by itself. But does either sidewinder increase the amount of weight that is placed on the hitch? I got the truck too decked out and I am already pushing my payload limit just with the trailers tongue weight and the weight of the hitch. 4. Does either sidewinder change the overall height of the king pin that cant be compensated with the hitch height? Im really not too worried about this, as I have auto leveling air bags on the TV that allows my truck and trailer to travel very level right now. 5. The 12 appears to be 46 lbs heavier than the 10, but is either sidewinder heavier than the trailers current 1116 king pin? I cant find its weight online anywhere. 6. My current setup tows like a dream. Very little sway and no bounce or pull from the trailer that I can detect. So assuming the two sidewinders are comparable in weight to the current king pin, does the 12 actually justify its extra cost over the 10? Another consideration for me is I may trade the fifth wheel for a Class C in 4 years when I retire. But If its a noticeable difference in towing, I dont mind the extra $700 in cost. 7. Does installing the sidewinder invalidate my trailers warranty? I saw this issue on a forum and dont want to jeopardize the extended warranty I bought. 8. I can handle installing the new head onto my existing legs if that works, but I do not have the ability, or desire, to install the sidewinder. How does local installation work and how much will it cost to have the king pin installed by a local shop? I live in... Thanks for answering these questions. Im ready to order if it doesnt hurt me too much in the added weight department.

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Expert Reply:

Okay, there's quite a bit to unpack here so to make things easier I am going to take your questions one at a time.

1) Your Ram OEM M20 hitch is the same as the Curt Q20 Curt Q20 5th Wheel Trailer Hitch # C16530-16021; it uses the same legs so you can replace the head with the Replacement Head Unit for Curt A20 # C16540 or the Replacement Head Unit for Curt A16 # C16520.

2) The Sidewinder Wedge Kit for Curt A16 Fifth Wheel Trailer Hitch # RP31016 is correct for the A16 or you can use the Sidewinder Wedge for Curt A Series 5th Wheel Trailer Hitches # C16992.

3) Neither option increases the pin weight on your truck, the Sidewinder 5th Wheel King Pin with Rotating Turret # RP34FR with Spacer Kit # RP97FR or the 5th Airborne Premium 5th Wheel Air Ride King Pin w/ Sidewinder and Turret # RP61412.

4) Both Sidewinders can change the height depending on what bolt holes you are using for your current pin box but not to an extent that can't be compensated for.

5) Both Sidewinders are heavier than the approximately 90 lbs of the Lippert 1116 5th Wheel Pin Box # LC1270271.

6) The 5th Airborne Premium 5th Wheel Air Ride King Pin with Sidewinder and Turret # RP61412 is absolutely a significant upgrade in regards to towing comfortably. The back-and-forth as well as up-and-down movement that occurs will be noticeably reduced because of the 5th Airborne's air bag. It also reduces the annoying vibration that happens so if your goal is the most comfortable towing experience - as opposed to just needing extra clearance - it is definitely worthwhile to go with the 5th Airborne Premium 5th Wheel Air Ride King Pin with Sidewinder and Turret # RP61412.

7) A Sidewinder is a pin box replacement and not any type of adapter which means it will not void your trailer's warranty.

8) Local installation is something that we can't offer too much assistance on, though larger metro areas like where you are will undoubtedly have an accessible RV dealer or shop. They will be experienced in this type of installation and you can call around (I'm sure there's more than one in your area) to find the most experienced and best rate.

Hopefully this helps and I did leave some video reviews for you to check out as well if you'd like.

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Kyle S

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