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Old 12-20-2018, 01:06 PM   #1
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Back Escape 5.0 SA up steep driveway?

I would like to store my Escape 5.0 SA in my car port, but the driveway is a steep one that levels off under the port. I can back the trailer up, but when the trailer reaches the level área the truck is still on the steep part. The angle between the trailer and the truck increases so much that the trailer will hit the bed of the truck. When level, the trailer clears the long bed of my GMC Canyon by 6 inches.

I need to raise the ball on my Anderson hitch about a foot above the norm or somehow attach the hitch to the rear bumper. Do of you know of a device or method that will raise the hitch for the sole purpose of backing a fifth wheel?

Thanks, Rick
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Old 12-20-2018, 01:38 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lzcamper View Post
I would like to store my Escape 5.0 SA in my car port, but the driveway is a steep one that levels off under the port. I can back the trailer up, but when the trailer reaches the level área the truck is still on the steep part. The angle between the trailer and the truck increases so much that the trailer will hit the bed of the truck. When level, the trailer clears the long bed of my GMC Canyon by 6 inches.

I need to raise the ball on my Anderson hitch about a foot above the norm or somehow attach the hitch to the rear bumper. Do of you know of a device or method that will raise the hitch for the sole purpose of backing a fifth wheel?

Thanks, Rick
When the trailer is on the level area, do you have clearance above the trailer? If you have space above you could make two arched shaped "ramps" to lay on the ground at the point the flat ground begins and back the trailer over them lessoning the angle. Hard to describe. Think of the arched ramps people use to load riding lawn mowers into pickups. The arched ramp lessons the angle so the mower deck doesn't hit the truck.

Never mind, I just reread the carport being in the way.
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Old 12-20-2018, 01:43 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by lzcamper View Post
I would like to store my Escape 5.0 SA in my car port, but the driveway is a steep one that levels off under the port. I can back the trailer up, but when the trailer reaches the level área the truck is still on the steep part. The angle between the trailer and the truck increases so much that the trailer will hit the bed of the truck. When level, the trailer clears the long bed of my GMC Canyon by 6 inches.

I need to raise the ball on my Anderson hitch about a foot above the norm or somehow attach the hitch to the rear bumper. Do of you know of a device or method that will raise the hitch for the sole purpose of backing a fifth wheel?

Thanks, Rick
If you only need to move the truck a couple of feet you may want to consider some type of a ramp for your front tires. Just a thought but it might be easier than trying to raise the front of the trailer
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Old 12-20-2018, 02:04 PM   #4
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I have about 12” of clearance between the top of the trailer and the carport and your ramp suggestion will help that because it will allow the trailer to level out as it enters the carport, but my main concern is the clearance between the nose of the trailer and the bed of the truck. When I back up the steep driveway and the trailer starts leveling, that distance gets less to the point that the nose of the trailer will be about 8” below the bed rails on the truck. Unless I can find a way to raise the hitch a foot higher than the bed rails, the trailer will crush the bed.

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Old 12-20-2018, 02:12 PM   #5
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Ronn,

Your idea is a possibility except, as I see it, the ramps would have to be placed behind the front wheels just before the trailer starts to level off. This might limit the height of the ramps making them ineffective. I need to make some measurements.

Rick
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Old 12-20-2018, 02:50 PM   #6
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I have a similar problem with my driveway, in reverse - the street is level and the driveway slopes down, so when I go to back down the driveway as the trailer goes over the hump and starts down the tailgate of the truck is still up high and the frame of the trailer contacts the bed rails or tailgate of the truck. With my old trailer which was similar in size to the 5.0TA, I rigged up a board across the tailgate of my truck that the trailer frame could contact rather than denting the bed rails (which happened on my first trip down the driveway with a brand new trailer years ago....). That worked fine but the trailer only needed to push the tailgate down a couple of inches and the springs allowed that. If you have a 12 inch difference that's probably too much for this method.

We don't have our new 5.0TA yet, but in the showroom looking at the floor model I realized that the sides of the shell up towards the front of the bunk have "jowls" that hang down lower than the trailer frame, so if contact was made going over a big hump it would be that overhang on the shell of the trailer that bumped the tailgate and I would expect that to crack the shell. So I will have to rig up a small bumper an inch thick or so on the bottom of the frame, right where the tailgate contact would be, to hang down further than the shell at that point so the shell does not make contact.

I'm confident this will work, but will be a bit of a PITA to fool with every time we take the trailer in our out of our driveway. I ordered the high lift axle option in hopes that the extra height will be just enough to give me clearance going over the driveway hump and not need to go through the other rigamarole....will find out in April when we bring our trailer home.
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Old 12-20-2018, 03:12 PM   #7
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Ronn,

Your idea is a possibility except, as I see it, the ramps would have to be placed behind the front wheels just before the trailer starts to level off. This might limit the height of the ramps making them ineffective. I need to make some measurements.

Rick
Yes, I did mean to place behind the front wheels. It might take custom made ramps, my F150 with side steps has exactly 12" clearance ground to the step. An option if not enough clearance for ramp (aluminum would make it manageable I would think) would be a front ramp of approximately 10" with a second ramp with a "quick connect" that would slide under once the vehicle is partly up the first set, then second set would continue the rise another 2 or 3 inches and then would flatten of taper down allowing your truck to back off the second ramp.
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Old 12-20-2018, 03:28 PM   #8
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Like your confidence, think if it was my trailer and the tailgate was where the interference was I’d remove it and get lots of clearance.😎
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Old 12-20-2018, 03:32 PM   #9
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Like your confidence, think if it was my trailer and the tailgate was where the interference was I’d remove it and get lots of clearance.😎
My thinking is it will still hit the rear of the side panels.
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Old 12-20-2018, 04:17 PM   #10
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what about one of the tail gaits that go down in the middle allowing more room? or remove the tail gait before baking into your drive way or one of the soft web tail gaits ?
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Old 12-20-2018, 04:57 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lzcamper View Post
I would like to store my Escape 5.0 SA in my car port, but the driveway is a steep one that levels off under the port. I can back the trailer up, but when the trailer reaches the level área the truck is still on the steep part. The angle between the trailer and the truck increases so much that the trailer will hit the bed of the truck. When level, the trailer clears the long bed of my GMC Canyon by 6 inches.

I need to raise the ball on my Anderson hitch about a foot above the norm or somehow attach the hitch to the rear bumper. Do of you know of a device or method that will raise the hitch for the sole purpose of backing a fifth wheel?

Thanks, Rick
If you have an andersen ultimate hitch something like this may be what you are thinking of, but I don't know how you would raise your 5.0 enough to get it in place. You would need to have a ball attached to the upper end some way. http://popuphitch.com/products/sb116-16-inch-offset-round-coupler/
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Old 12-20-2018, 05:57 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by lzcamper View Post
I would like to store my Escape 5.0 SA in my car port, but the driveway is a steep one that levels off under the port. I can back the trailer up, but when the trailer reaches the level área the truck is still on the steep part. The angle between the trailer and the truck increases so much that the trailer will hit the bed of the truck. When level, the trailer clears the long bed of my GMC Canyon by 6 inches.

I need to raise the ball on my Anderson hitch about a foot above the norm or somehow attach the hitch to the rear bumper. Do of you know of a device or method that will raise the hitch for the sole purpose of backing a fifth wheel?

Thanks, Rick
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Old 12-20-2018, 06:54 PM   #13
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... The angle between the trailer and the truck increases so much that the trailer will hit the bed of the truck. When level, the trailer clears the long bed of my GMC Canyon by 6 inches.

I need to raise the ball on my Anderson hitch about a foot above the norm or somehow attach the hitch to the rear bumper.
I would rather move the hitch point rearward, close to the end of the box, rather than raising it. Of course that increases rear axle load (probably okay for the short time at low speed, especially if cargo is unloaded from the box first), and reduces stability (not a problem at low speed).

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Do of you know of a device or method that will raise the hitch for the sole purpose of backing a fifth wheel?
To move it back (instead of raising it), you could mount an extra pair of rails in the box, further back. Even one additional rail, at the same spacing, would provide a second rearward mounting location 22 inches further back - would that be enough to provide clearance?

The Andersen Ultimate ball is vertically adjustable, so (unless it is already at the highest position) you can raise it moderately as well as moving it back.
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Old 12-20-2018, 07:44 PM   #14
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Would a slider help? From a quick look, you get another 12" of rear travel, at least the one I looked at.
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Old 12-20-2018, 09:27 PM   #15
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How about buying one of the motorized trailer movers, back trailer in with tow vehicle. Place chocks at the front of front trailer wheels. Disconnect tow vehicle and move the rest of the way with the trailer mover. Expensive, but might be best solution.
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Old 12-20-2018, 09:54 PM   #16
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Ronn,

That might be a possible solution, but I'm not sure the hitch or bed rails could stand the stresses caused by an extension that is off center.

Rick
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Old 12-20-2018, 09:58 PM   #17
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I would check with the manufacturer of that contraption as to what degree of inclination it can safely hold a trailer of that weight. If it gets away from you, your neighbour could have what is left of a Fiberglass trailer their living room.
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Old 12-20-2018, 09:58 PM   #18
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Dave & Kent,

Your proposed solutions would definitely do the job, but I'd have to sell the trailer to afford them.

Rick
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Old 12-20-2018, 10:06 PM   #19
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Bob,

A slider hitch might work, but I have an Andersen hitch because I can't lift a slider any more. I used to have one in my earlier days and used it as you describe on some desert roads.

Rick
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Old 12-20-2018, 10:21 PM   #20
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Chotch & Fox Hunt,

The width of the bed on my mid-size truck is about a foot less than the width of the trailer, so removing the tailgate wouldn't work. The width of the street in front of my driveway is only 16 feet, so I need to turn quickly to enter the bottom of the sloped driveway. The end result is a trailer that is tilted at an angle over the bed.

Rick
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