New to campers 19' scamp "fifth wheel" - Page 7 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-13-2012, 09:09 AM   #85
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I think I'm going to go about the top bunk differently than most. My plan is to have a cushion made for the top bunk that levels it with the bed. I don't want to lose the use of the couch.
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Old 11-13-2012, 01:50 PM   #86
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I started on the new hitch today. It's longer than need be, but I want to get it welded on the trailer before I try to measure out the clearance I need for everything. I'll cut the front off after I figure that out.

It's 3.5"x3/16"wall square tubing, same as the factory one was.

I'm using two down tubes. I'm angling these forward more, and the horizontal part will be forward more, so I was concerned about twisting the hitch if I was ever backing it up with the pickup 90* to the trailer. I was also concerned about the bouncing force on the hitch with a single tube, due to the same reasons. There shouldn't be any problem now.



I was worried about how I was going to get it on the trailer. I'm a genius...the i.d. of this tube is just slightly larger than the o.d. of the extension on my cherry picker. If I take the hook off of it, I can slide the hitch on the cherry picker tube and clamp it on. With a little balancing between the cherry picker and trailer jacks, I should get it sitting square and be able to burn it in easily (I hope). Redneck engineering at it's finest...
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Old 11-14-2012, 02:39 PM   #87
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Well, it's welded to the trailer. I had a heck of a time trying to square it to the trailer, NOTHING was square. 1/8" this way, 1/4" the other way, depends on what you measured to. I finally used squares to measure from the front of the tires, what a pain.

I'm a little unhappy with myself. I made sure the top of the two downtubes was parallel to the horizontal tube, and it was. However, the plate on the camper was NOT parallel to the bottom of the trailer, and I didn't even think about checking that. So, it looks like I screwed up and the front of the hitch angles up. To late now, it's burned in.







I lowered the trailer a bit to get it more level. I still have 9" of bed clearance at the low point, and adding weight to the pickup or trailer will only increase that. It should be plenty. I'm only 2wd, and don't plan on taking the thing offroading.

The kingpin isn't welded on yet. I think I'm going to move it 3" further up the hitch than it is right now. I have plenty of clearance to turn 90* as is, but if the trailer is back 3" more, I can hitch up without having to close the tailgate, and open it before unhitching (as long as it's in a spot where I can back in fairly straight). if my calculations are right, I'll still be able to turn 90*, but I'll only have about 5" of clearance from the bed rail to the 45* part of the hitch then. No biggie, I can't imagine I'm going to have it cranked that far over very often, if at all. Even then, I can't imagine the ground will be that rough. I've never needed to turn that sharp for my car trailer, and it's 4.5' further behind the truck than the camper.
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Old 11-14-2012, 02:47 PM   #88
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You have done so much in so little time, great job!!
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Old 11-14-2012, 02:57 PM   #89
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I guess I must have missed something- though I did look back through the thread for a clue before asking:
What's the reason for replacing the factory hitch?

Francesca
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Old 11-14-2012, 05:41 PM   #90
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Many reasons.

One, I don't like their hitch for the pickup. I'm not drilling holes in my pickup for a hitch that is worthless for any other trailer, and prevents me from using every other trailer with a gooseneck or real fifth wheel. It also can't be removed easily, which sucks. I use my bed all the time.

Two, if the tow vehicle breaks down, you're out of luck for getting your trailer off the road. Most tow trucks can handle a gooseneck or fifth wheel, good luck with this hitch.

Three, I don't want to hack up a good fifth wheel hitch to make it work with an improper trailer hitch that never should have been built (IMHO), and make it worthless for every other trailer that has a proper hitch on it.

To be honest, I thought the hitch was something the previous owner put together. I never imagined a factory would build a hitch like that, until I saw it on scamps website.
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Old 11-14-2012, 05:50 PM   #91
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I get it... and as far as I'm concerned, the important thing is that once you're done, you'll have exactly what you want!

Francesca
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Old 11-15-2012, 05:41 PM   #92
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I got a little more done. I ran out of wire again.

Don't try this at home. It was dumb, but worked great.



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Old 11-15-2012, 05:44 PM   #93
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You must be a welder or fabricator. Definitely get into things a bit more than myself. Looks great though!
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Old 11-15-2012, 07:47 PM   #94
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Just a former North Dakota farmboy, turned jet mechanic.
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Old 11-17-2012, 05:37 PM   #95
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Well, the hitch is done and in primer. The fifth wheel kingpin was curved on top, and I didn't understand why. I figured it out when I tried hitching it to my truck. It's designed to go THROUGH a 3/8" plate with a 3" hole cut in it for the pin. So, the pin sat on the top of the jaws, and the plates didn't touch. The machine shop wanted $140 to cut the 10" radius and 3" center, so I spent $200 and bought a circle cutting jig for the plasma cutter, along with a 24" square piece of 3/8" plate, 3 flap disks, and a 4' piece of 3"x1/8" strap iron.

It's way to windy to spray (surprise), so I slobbered the primer on with a 2" chip brush, then smoothed it with a 4" roller. It'll work.



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Old 11-17-2012, 07:17 PM   #96
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Expensive hitch, but at least it's done. Looks good, how does it tow, have you taken it out for a cruise yet?
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Old 11-17-2012, 07:53 PM   #97
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Nope, still need to do the wiring in the bed of the truck, plus the interior is all over the place inside.
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Old 11-18-2012, 02:56 PM   #98
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It's painted now. I'll give it a second coat later.



I also put the trailer connector in the bed.



Now it's time for vacation for a week or so. I'll get back to it after the holidays.
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