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Discussion Starter #1
Looking at getting a 2018 Dodge PowerWagon and a new camper.

There are two similar layouts that we have fallen in love with, one in a trailer and one in a 5th wheel model (which we like better, but not a deal breaker by any means).

Either would be below the max rated tow capacity of the PowerWagon, and going through all of the 3rd party tow guides, the numbers work out there should be no problem.

Would the extra height of the PowerWagon not be conducive at all to 5th wheel towing?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I realize it does not seem to be a factory order option to get it prepped for one. But that does not rule out by itself that it couldn't tow 5th wheel fine.

I have seen posts from people with older gen PowerWagons 5th wheel towing, just had not seen anyone with 2017 or later with posts saying they were.
 

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A 2017 is the same as a 2014-2016 except for styling
 

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I realize it does not seem to be a factory order option to get it prepped for one. But that does not rule out by itself that it couldn't tow 5th wheel fine.

I have seen posts from people with older gen PowerWagons 5th wheel towing, just had not seen anyone with 2017 or later with posts saying they were.
You could fifth wheel tow with a tacoma but doesn't mean you should.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
It is one that is designed to be towed by 1/2 ton pickups and if we had it at max load capacity for the trailer (which would take a lot), it would be still be under max tow capacity.

Punching in the unloaded trailer weight, the stated hitch weight, payload capacity of 1444, curb weight of 7044, GVWR of 8510 and GCWR of 17,500 for the PW, and adding weight for passengers, extra cargo in the truck and even an extra 250 pounds for the 5th wheel hitch;
the 3rd party sites that figure max safe towing says the numbers should work out with the max 5th wheel weight at 25% being more than the weight of the trailer hitch weight.

So not looking to tow a behemouth. Just thinking if at all possible we would rather go 5th wheel vs trailer tow.
 

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As far as towing capacity it makes almost no difference whether it's a fifth wheel or a trailer. The big difference is the tongue/hitch weight. Power Wagons are "softly sprung" compared to regular 2500's (that is one of the reasons they are so comfortable on the road), so their maximum payload is less.

For a fifth wheel you need to check what the hitch weight is, then add the weight of the hitch and passengers/payload, and see how that compares with the maximum payload. If you are close you should be OK, because for a few hundred bucks you can ad an air suspension which will solve that problem if you are too low. It will also help level the truck. See:

https://www.etrailer.com/p-AL57289.html?hhyear=2015&hhmake=Ram&hhmodel=2500
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Finally found an actual number stated for 5th wheel towing on the Powerwagon from dealer listed specs on a model that is almost identical to the one I am ordering. Sadly, if this number is true, the 5th wheel will be out. The listed specs for 5th wheel towing is 4470 pounds less than the trailer tow.

Curb weight (lbs.) 7,075
Gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) (lbs.) 8,510
Payload (lbs.) 1,470
Towing capacity (lbs.) 9,910
Gross combined weight rating (GCWR) (lbs.) 17,500
5th-wheel towing capacity (lbs.) 5,440

I have the dealer I ordered from checking with the Ram rep after the holidays to confirm...I stumbled across this number, and have found it listed no other place, so not 100% sure it is accurate yet.

etrailer and a couple of other places was where I was using their guides, thinking the 5th wheel capacity would be close to the tow capacity, using the payload numbers etc, and it all worked out for the one we were looking at.

But 5440 pounds....not gonna happen if that number is correct, adding air bags or not. The lightest model comes in 1500+ pounds north of that number dry weight.
 

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5th wheel capacity is no different than the regular towing capacity, you just typically run out of payload for pin weight faster because 5th wheels have higher percentages of their weight on the tongue. That figure seems strange
 

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Finally found an actual number stated for 5th wheel towing on the Powerwagon from dealer listed specs on a model that is almost identical to the one I am ordering. Sadly, if this number is true, the 5th wheel will be out. The listed specs for 5th wheel towing is 4470 pounds less than the trailer tow.

Curb weight (lbs.) 7,075
Gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) (lbs.) 8,510
Payload (lbs.) 1,470
Towing capacity (lbs.) 9,910
Gross combined weight rating (GCWR) (lbs.) 17,500
5th-wheel towing capacity (lbs.) 5,440

I have the dealer I ordered from checking with the Ram rep after the holidays to confirm...I stumbled across this number, and have found it listed no other place, so not 100% sure it is accurate yet.

etrailer and a couple of other places was where I was using their guides, thinking the 5th wheel capacity would be close to the tow capacity, using the payload numbers etc, and it all worked out for the one we were looking at.

But 5440 pounds....not gonna happen if that number is correct, adding air bags or not. The lightest model comes in 1500+ pounds north of that number dry weight.
5th wheel vs travel trailer weight don’t matter, something is wrong with that 5440. What will get you is the pin weight of a 5th wheel, even on the 1/2 ton models they range from 1200 lbs and up. 5th wheel hitch weighs 200 lbs and up and by the time you have passengers in the cab, trailer stocked up you will be over loaded and from what I read.... the PW don’t take over loaded conditions well at all.
 

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2017 power wagon fifth whee towing

I tow a Durango gold 355rlt with my 2017 power wagon and it’s great with helper springs. Using a B&w companion fifth wheel hitch. Needed a slider due to the short bed.
 

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I would say that if you stay within your payload and tow capacity parameters while loaded you should be fine. DEFINATELY get air bags and some DayStar cradles. It will bolster the soft springs and help with payload. Plus you’ll level your truck for safer towing. It’ll just be easier on everything.

I don’t tow a heavy trailer right now, but sometimes I do carry a LOT of extra payload while I’m towing my small trailer. I had bags installed for peace of mind and I like riding level at all costs. ( Just me) While we wont ever be going with a 5th wheel, we will be upgrading to a 5K lb trailer next year. I need to keep some room for payload. Id say no mater what you do, BAG IT!

In the picture with the paving stones peeking over the top of the bed, there are 77 stones at 20lbs a piece. At least 1500 lbs of stones. That’s a tad over max payload. I had 35 SPI in the bags. No problemo.

Good luck!
(Edit) I just saw how old this thread is. LOL I wonder what happened?
 

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(Edit) I just saw how old this thread is. LOL I wonder what happened?
lol, I was wondering the same thing after reading thru this and then noticing it was an old thread. Oh well. Good news is, we all got to see more pics of your truck and that awesome camping setup you have. :smileup:
 

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Discussion Starter #16
The early response talked me out of going 5th wheel route. We found essentially the same floor plan we loved in the 5th wheel in a trailer model, and it was well within towing capacity specs of the Powerwagon. No air bags, just a good antisway/load leveling hookup, and the squat is minimal. Other than getting going from a stop, don't notice it much at all going down the highway...well other than the fuel gauge dropping faster than without it.



 

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Thanks for following up, great looking setup! I've heard great things about the Imagine trailers.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks for following up, great looking setup! I've heard great things about the Imagine trailers.

They are owned by Winnebago Industries, but operate as a separate entity out of their own production facilities.


For the features and layouts, they are some of the lightest weight trailers and 5th wheels out there. This one has the rear living area, a real dining table and chairs, theatre seating and a loveseat, tons of windows, island kitchen and a shower that a big fat guy like me can fit in without feeling like they are a sardine. The fact that dry weight was well under 2k max towing and fully loaded weight was still 1k under max tow capacity and we got as big of a trailer as we did, score. Tongue weight is low as well...most of the weight is over the axles, or a little behind.
 

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That sounds like a great floor plan. I've been researching the heck out of travel trailers this past month. Really like the Imagine 2800BH myself for my family of 4, which includes my two boys who are 8 and 5. I figured the bunkhouse would be perfect for them. I'm concerned that trailer may be a bit on the large side for my half ton though. I'll run the numbers more when I get closer to pulling the trigger.
 

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Would Timbrens help with the squat and improve the handling when at/near max payload? At only a couple hundred $s I've been considering trying a pair, even though I only run heavy payloads a few times per year.
 
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