Advice on tow vehicle: F-150 with Bigfoot 5th wheel - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-04-2013, 02:20 PM   #15
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Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
Alberta
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Originally Posted by Underpowered View Post
And yeah that Crowsnest is a nasty piece of highway lol
I used to travel it year round for my previous job.. and the Osoyoos Hill? Hahah my truck would explode.
I like interesting roads, and have driven Highway 3 between Osoyoos and Alberta in cars, a van towing a 17' Boler, and a large motorhome... I think it's a great highway It does have hills which are work to climb, and descents that require the driver's full attention! If I were not willing to take an RV rig on this road, I wouldn't take it anywhere.
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Old 08-04-2013, 04:52 PM   #16
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Trailer: Bigfoot
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So, I did it. Took the highway, went down a logging road, etc. Poor truck does not like the take off part of it lol.. Kept it at around 100 km/hr. Was not that bad, did not encounter any steep hills yet, time will tell. That was unloaded too.. I'll be looking for a bigger truck soon me thinks.
Thanks guys for the tips and advice.
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Old 08-04-2013, 09:13 PM   #17
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Name: Floyd
Trailer: 2004 13 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe
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Originally Posted by Underpowered View Post
Hi there,

I have a couple questions that I hope someone may be able to help me with.

Tow Vehicle:
1993 F-150 4x4 ext cab.
5.0 L
3.55 Gears
Automatic
170k on motor
Has air bags
Says it can tow 6600lbs roughly

5th Wheel:
1987 Bigfoot
20 foot
3500 pounds dry roughly, although i've read that its more than that.
Single axle


I do not expect to win any races, I took the 5th for a tour around where I live the other day and she seemed super heavy behind my truck. I've never hauled a 5th wheel before.. is it normal for the truck to feel that way? Is my truck too light of duty for the application I am trying to use it for? I am taking it on the highway next week so I guess that will prove if it will work or not, but any advice would be great.
Kinda scared lol..

Thanks in advance for any help.
The bad news is...
What you have is basicly a "car" engine in a truck.
The good news is...
It is one of the most developed engines in history.
It should not be hard to find a knowledgable speed shop which could make a few mods which would make significant performance changes for the task at hand.
Before you even start, go get a bottle of PRO-GARD fuel injection cleaner and follow the instructions on the label, you will see noticable change before the tank is empty.
Replace the air cleaner and the cap, rotor and plugs using the right parts.
While you are at it, pull the spout and reset the timing using a vacuum guage instead of a light.(then replace the spout)
A nice finishing touch would be to change the oil using an FL1A filter and 5W30 motor oil.
All this stuff should have a cumulative effect, but also give you a clean starting point before any mechanical mods.
OH! and lock-out OD when towing and consider going back to the factory sized tires. Shorter tires effectively mean a lower overall gear ratio and more pulling power.
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Old 08-04-2013, 11:50 PM   #18
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Name: Mike
Trailer: Bigfoot
British Columbia
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Thank you sir! I needed some hope lol!
Am gonna save for a 1993-98 7.3, but until then I have to make due and those changes will not break the bank.
Heading out about 150km this weekend on a trial run, will post the results. Gonna make the ol lady haul the dogs and most of the gear in the car to be safe.
One question totally unrelated would be, how far can you jack knife a 5th wheel when backing up? I went pretty far today, was crazy, but was fine.
Am getting confident backing it up now, which is a bonus
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Old 08-05-2013, 12:21 AM   #19
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Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
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Originally Posted by Underpowered View Post
One question totally unrelated would be, how far can you jack knife a 5th wheel when backing up? I went pretty far today, was crazy, but was fine.
Until just before the trailer hits the cab... seriously. If the hitch is back far enough in the box - half the trailer body width - that's 90 degrees. On the other hand, if you're that far it just gets tighter as you back up no matter how far you have the steering turned, so you shouldn't generally need to go that far.

It really depends on the hitch placement, and with a long (8 foot) box there should be no problem placing the hitch far enough back to turn as far as you need and still have the pin weight a bit forward of the axle.

So...
  1. How long is the box, or more accurately, how far is it from cab to rear axle?
  2. How wide is the Bigfoot (in the front, but I don't think they taper)? I'm guessing about 8', or maybe less.
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Old 08-05-2013, 09:50 AM   #20
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Trailer: 1984 19' scamp
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Until it hits the cab, then back it off a few degrees. I can go over 90* with the scamp (and have to go that far to park it).
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Old 08-05-2013, 10:46 AM   #21
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Trailer: 1973 Hunter Compact II
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Clip: The bad news is...
What you have is basicly a "car" engine in a truck.
The good news is...
It is one of the most developed engines in history.
It should not be hard to find a knowledgable speed shop which could make a few mods which would make significant performance changes for the task at hand.
--------------------------------------------------------------------

Not to beat this topic to death (but I will)......

The 302 wasn't that well a developed engine when that one was built 20 years ago.
I had an almost new Ford p/u with a 302 in it when I bought my airstream back in the late 70's and, after three short trips pulling an Airstream, that weighed about the same as the mentioned BigFoot, I traded in the Ford for a Chevy with a 350, and pulled the Airstream over 22,000 miles in one year without problems.

Adding performance stuff to a 20 y.o. engine, with 170,000km on it, may not be the best idea to retain reliability.

IMHO: The most developed engine in history remains the Chevy small block V8, from 265 to 350 c.i., (as well as the respected 262 c.i. V6 derivatives), now in it's 58th year.
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Old 08-05-2013, 11:22 AM   #22
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Old 08-05-2013, 12:41 PM   #23
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Name: Floyd
Trailer: 2004 13 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
Clip: The bad news is...
What you have is basicly a "car" engine in a truck.
The good news is...
It is one of the most developed engines in history.
It should not be hard to find a knowledgable speed shop which could make a few mods which would make significant performance changes for the task at hand.
--------------------------------------------------------------------

Not to beat this topic to death (but I will)......

The 302 wasn't that well a developed engine when that one was built 20 years ago.
I had an almost new Ford p/u with a 302 in it when I bought my airstream back in the late 70's and, after three short trips pulling an Airstream, that weighed about the same as the mentioned BigFoot, I traded in the Ford for a Chevy with a 350, and pulled the Airstream over 22,000 miles in one year without problems.

Adding performance stuff to a 20 y.o. engine, with 170,000km on it, may not be the best idea to retain reliability.

IMHO: The most developed engine in history remains the Chevy small block V8, from 265 to 350 c.i., (as well as the respected 262 c.i. V6 derivatives), now in it's 58th year.
It wouldn't have taken a Jeanne Dixon to see that coming.....


What was meant was that there are lots of Motorsports and aftermarket performance parts available, The engine platform has had fifty years of development behind it and, last I checked, is still being produced for aftermarket applications. A 170,000km would be a concern if it were a SBC, but it ain't. That's barely over 100,000 miles, which makes it at least as good as new Chevy!(Hey! You started it!)
But anyway, you missed the point....I said "one of" the most developed engine platforms in history.That's indisputable.
There are several others of course, but it may be as you say, that the Chevy has needed the most development.
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