Fifth wheel towing - Dodge Durango Forum and Dodge Dakota Forums
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post #1 of Old 08-28-2009, 06:54 AM Thread Starter
wheelman
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Fifth wheel towing

Okay, don't laugh but I am looking into the possibility of using my 2000 Dakota Sport Quad Cab to tow a fifth wheel or gooseneck RV trailer. Mine is a 4.7L, auto trans, 3.55 9.25" rear end and the manual says I can tow up to 9200lbs. My bed payload is 1450lbs. I have been able to find quite a few trailers within that weight range. My only mods to the engine, so far, are clutch fan removal and Airaid CAI. I've searched the site but no one mentions this tow set up. I would like to get feed back, positive or negative, especially concerning opinions on the trucks durability for this type of venture. Thanks.

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post #2 of Old 08-28-2009, 08:40 AM
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I wouldn't do it.

I pulled my old 4x4 Toyota about 40 miles home on a car dolly and it was downright nerve wrecking. The suspension felt -ok- but the brakes where downright worthless and my old yota is only around 4500 pounds.

In my old work truck, a 96 single cab ram dually with a cummins, I would bring 800 feet of drill steel out to the rig or back to the yard and was NEVER as nervous pulling that as I was in my dakota.
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post #3 of Old 08-28-2009, 05:52 PM
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yeah i dont think id risk that weight with a dakota unless beef up suspension and brakes. Hell with mine just towing a 5x8 trailer packed tight to around 1200 pounds i can feel and smell the brakes when i gotta slow quick.

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post #4 of Old 08-28-2009, 06:18 PM
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to put it in prespective...

your trailer WILL have trailer brakes so that eliminates the braking problem. If the trailer your looking at doesn't have brakes....don't buy it.

Been there, done that.

Next is the get up and go part of the question....I'd be looking for a 9.25 axle with a 3:90's.

Have fun...!
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post #5 of Old 08-28-2009, 07:40 PM
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oh and id get the brake controller and a tranny cooler and make sure to keep out of overdrive

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post #6 of Old 08-28-2009, 07:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wheelman View Post
Okay, don't laugh but I am looking into the possibility of using my 2000 Dakota Sport Quad Cab to tow a fifth wheel or gooseneck RV trailer. Mine is a 4.7L, auto trans, 3.55 9.25" rear end and the manual says I can tow up to 9200lbs. My bed payload is 1450lbs. I have been able to find quite a few trailers within that weight range. My only mods to the engine, so far, are clutch fan removal and Airaid CAI. I've searched the site but no one mentions this tow set up. I would like to get feed back, positive or negative, especially concerning opinions on the trucks durability for this type of venture. Thanks.
That 9200lb rating includes the weight of your truck loaded so take the weight of your truck out of the 9200. You're not asking for trouble, you're yelling "I hate Ns!!!" in the middle of Compton.

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post #7 of Old 08-28-2009, 08:19 PM
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I ran across an older gentlemen many years ago that was towing a 5th wheel with his Dakota QC (2000-2002). It was quite a sight. He had a sliding hitch (got to have it for the tight corners and short bed), and the trailer was narrow - pretty much the same width of the truck. He said he had no issues.

I have an extended family member that has a 2000 QC 4x4. He has a 5th wheel trailer and 3.55 gears and he says it tows just fine.

Go figure? It's not the best towing setup, but it has been shown to work.

Bottom line: make sure you can stop safely, and don't overload your suspension (air bags, etc. can take care of that).

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post #8 of Old 08-28-2009, 08:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R/T Rick View Post
That 9200lb rating includes the weight of your truck loaded so take the weight of your truck out of the 9200. You're not asking for trouble, you're yelling "I hate Ns!!!" in the middle of Compton.
Seems kinda low to me...my 05 Durango, 4.7L 9.25 w/3.92s I think was around 11 or 12K towing capacity? I know empty, it was 5500 by itself, and I had my big block dakota on a U-haul trailer behind it, the dakota is 4200, the u-haul car hauler was 1500, so that's 5700 lbs right there, plus another couple hundred pounds of cargo in the back of the Durango and bed of the Dakota...during a military DITY move from Louisiana to Ohio, I had a weight ticket of 11 thousand and some change, and it made the 900 mile trip with ease. never got scary, even going through the "hills" of Kentucky, which can be pretty big! sure, pulling up some hills on the freeway, it was WOT, kicked down into 3rd gear and turning 4,000 rpm just to maintain 65mph, but other than that, it did great. (changed the oil immediately after the trip obviously, working it THAT hard for 900 miles)

The GenIII quad cab Dakota has the same motor, trans and rear end as the 05 Durango did, and weighs 1,000 lbs LESS.

as long as your trailer has brakes so the load doesn't get away from you, why COULDN'T you pull 7-8K lbs of cargo behind it?

However, I would be afraid of a cargo load of 9,200 lbs, add in the truck weight, some cargo (luggage, bicycles, food, other camping supplies) and you're pushing 14,000 lbs or more, which I would think is a bit much for the 4.7L
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post #9 of Old 08-28-2009, 08:50 PM
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Gearing is making all the difference with the 3.92 vs 3.55 not to mention they really beefed up the frame, chassis, suspension, brakes and they're heavier in the 05+ dak/durs vs 04 and down. The power has been there for years now, (hell, my stepmom's 5.9 ram makes no more power then a gen III R/T or 4.7 and it's rated for 12k with a class IV) the rest of the truck really isn't.

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post #10 of Old 08-29-2009, 12:23 AM
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That 9200 has to be the gross combined weight rating for truck and trailer. Subtract the truck out and you might not be able to find a 5th wheel light enough. Scamp makes a small lightweight fifth wheel that could be pulled. I think you will be limited to 25' and under 5th wheels and probably not be able to get one with a slide as the slide adds weight. You will also need a sliding 5th wheel hitch in order to make anything more than slight turns. All that said towing a comparitive size and weight 5th wheel will be eaiser than a trailer. In your setup I would definately go with 3.92 and more likely 4.10 gears. I would also add an additional oil and tranny cooler and upgrade my pads and shoes to top quality parts. I would also either do an add a leaf or do the monroe coil over shocks in the rear. Depending on you climate I would probably also add in a supplemental electric fan to keep it cool. If I were in your situation and did these upgrades I would not hesitate to tow a 5-6k lb 5th wheel that was 25' or less. As long as the tranny didn't hunt around for gears you could keep it in OD but most likely unless you are on complete flatlands you'll need to keep it out of OD.

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post #11 of Old 08-29-2009, 12:44 AM
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I have a 4000 lb or so 21' 5th wheel I tow with the wife's 03 Dakota Quad. It has the 4.7 45RFE 3.92 gears and 265/70R16 tires. Total combined weight loaded was 9980 lbs last time I weighed it. It pulls the trailer fine as long as there isn't too much of a head wind.

I have a Robin 5th wheel hitch that I can move back 9 1/2" for extra maneuvering room when I have to, still can't jacknife it but the extra cab clearance helps. Even with the hitch in the forward position I can turn as much or more than a bumper pull trailer.

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post #12 of Old 08-29-2009, 01:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R/T Rick View Post
Gearing is making all the difference with the 3.92 vs 3.55 not to mention they really beefed up the frame, chassis, suspension, brakes and they're heavier in the 05+ dak/durs vs 04 and down. The power has been there for years now, (hell, my stepmom's 5.9 ram makes no more power then a gen III R/T or 4.7 and it's rated for 12k with a class IV) the rest of the truck really isn't.
05-07 Dakota weights did NOT change. 2004 was the new model year for the Durango, which is close to 6000lbs. gross weight.
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post #13 of Old 08-29-2009, 02:00 AM
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05-07 Dakota weights did NOT change. 2004 was the new model year for the Durango, which is close to 6000lbs. gross weight.
mine weighed 5500 empty, that would mean I could only put 500 lbs into my 7 passenger SUV--which is an average of about 70 lbs per person!

...yea gross is closer to 12K, like I said in my earlier post. I forget exactly how much, and I don't have it to go out and look it up anymore
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post #14 of Old 08-29-2009, 02:16 AM
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our durango has towed a 6500lbs boat, not sure if that includes the trailer or not, plus 6 passengers and equipment as well as the durango being fairly well loaded.

trailer brakes are key. granted my step dad doesn't let me drive with the boat on the trailer since its 30ft long and weighs so damn much.

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post #15 of Old 08-29-2009, 02:25 AM
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is it a 1ton dak or 3/4 ton dak just messen
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