fifth wheels

Discussion in 'General RVing' started by terrell, Jul 27, 2003.

  1. terrell

    terrell New Member

    We are going to retire soon and have decided on a 36 ft fifth wheel. WE are serious about the Prairie Schooner by Coachman. Any feed back or comments on this rv would be greatly appreciated. Thanks :)
     
  2. hertig

    hertig Senior Member

    fifth wheels

    Will you be using it 'full time' or intermittantly? What do you plan to tow it with?
     
  3. Gary B

    Gary B Senior Member

    fifth wheels

    Hi terrell, Coachmen builds very good middle of the run RV's, I don't know about the Prairie Schooner, (they bought the name a few years ago) but tend the think its their higher line 5er. Our 1st 5er was a Coachmen Catalina and was an excellent trailer we had no problems with it, our only complaint was the furniture, the coach & swivel rocker were not very good, all the rest was good. :) :cool: :bleh:
     
  4. terrell

    terrell New Member

    fifth wheels

    The fifth wheel that I was talking about (Prairie Schooner) is made by Gulf Stream and not Coachman. I'm really new at this. The model is 36FKS. Any one that has one or similiar, we would love to hear from you. Plan on pulling it with GMC Sierra 2500HD shortbed Diesel with an Allison 5 speed automatic trans. We are going to be fulltimers. This is an exciting time for us. Have to sell our business and home and we're off!!!!!!!!!
     
  5. John Harrelson

    John Harrelson New Member

    fifth wheels

    I had a 1991, 40 foot Prairie Schooner 5th wheel with two slides and it was the best trailer on the market, bar none....
    The company closed up in 1992 and sold the name. I cannot comment on the ones made today, but the 1991 model was the greatest trailer that America has ever produced.

    John
     
  6. hertig

    hertig Senior Member

    fifth wheels

    A 36' 'full time' suitable 5th wheel may be a bit heavy for a 2500HD. You'll need to take the pin weight of the trailer (can estimate it as 10 to 20% of the Gross trailer weight), add it to the hitch weight, and make sure that will all of your gear/passangers/fuel/etc in the truck that adding in pin weight and hitch weight doesn't exceed either the Gross weight of the truck or the maxium rear axel weight. It is less likely to be a problem, but you still need to check that the Gross Weight of the trailer and the loaded weight of the truck do not exceed the Maxium Combined weight rating.

    Note that the 'maxium towing weight' claimed by the dealer is a load of crock. It assumes a stripped truck (no accessories, no passangers, nothing carried in it), a 150 pound driver and a gallon of gas. It is always at LEAST a 1000 pounds high and usually more. Furthermore, it generally ignores the effect of the trailer and hitch on the truck limits. Its purpose is to sell trucks, not keep you out of the hospital, the garage or court...

    Be aware the the shortbed trucks can have problems towing 5th wheels. You will probably need an extended pin box, a sliding hitch, or both, to reach your tightest turning radius. Also, there are many people out there who state that long trailers and short tow vehicles are unstable. There are 'rules of thumb' about relative lengths, but I don't know them...
     
  7. C Nash

    C Nash Senior Member

    fifth wheels

    Agree with john on the 36 ft might be a little to much for the 2500. I would prefer the dually for most trailers over 32ft. Don't think the weight will be any problem for the duramax and allision to pull but, like John said the pin weight and short bed might be a problem especially if it's a short wheel base. Good luck and keep us posted
     

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