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Need complete 5th wheel hitch

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  #1  
Old 03-15-2018, 09:36 PM
ysgi
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Need complete 5th wheel hitch

I have a 17 CCLB F350 with NO hitch prep whatsoever. I want the Andersen Ultimate 5th wheel hitch. Has anyone had to install the entire prep setup? What is preferred? Ford puck system? BW Turnover?
I know I really don't want the rails as I use my bed quite often.

Thanks for any info.

Eric
 
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Old 03-15-2018, 10:08 PM
dieseldrive
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If you dont mind the rails staying i your bed, I would go with ISR rails and the hitch of your choice. It much lighter than the Ford Prep (I had the ford prep in my 16 and it was OK, but it does limit your hitch options and it adds over 100 pounds to your trucks empty weight. Plus, if you don't need a GN ball, you dont have to have that big hole in the center of your bed (which I hated). The factory prep is sturdy though.
 
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Old 03-15-2018, 10:43 PM
Ram2Ford
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I just installed the B&W gooseneck hitch prep and Air Lift bags last week. I’m no mechanic, did it in my garage, a few nics in my bald head to show for it. Not a bad job at all.
 
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Old 03-15-2018, 11:46 PM
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K here’s my advice.
First. What is the primary role. Gooseneck or fifth wheel
Second. how often are you going to bounce back and forth with an empty bed or need the flat box space.
Third. Who is doing this work.
Answer these and your half way there.
I have the B&W turnover ball in my ‘16 F-150. Installation IMHO will be the same degree of difficulty as the OEM Fifth wheel/ gooseneck setup with one key difference. All the videos I’ve seen on installations of the OEM has the bed box being lifted off the frame approximately 3-4” to allow the plate to slide in. This method is probably easier if your not working from a hoist. With B&W this should not be the case. Drilling the holes should be a snap as all 17-18 SDs have small 1/8” holes as pilots but a sprayed in liner will make this difficult from in the bed but still should be seen from below.
Gooseneck is the best Wt saver but again what are you hauling? I believe the B&W turnover ball system is lighter then the OEM But I cant say 100%. Both ate great products. The 17-18 MY SDs sit higher then previous years so the Anderson UH is a good way to go to clear the box rails when towing 5vers. Via gooseneck however, it does take up a lot of bed space; it has a large footprint. You’ll likely have lots of payload for most Fifth wheel rigs so either the OEM hitch (Reese I think) or the B&W companion (which is a two piece so lighter two step lift) are great choices. For me as my 5th wheel can be hauled via gooseneck (without voiding the warranty) I’ll continue to haul this way provided I have sufficient clearance. If not I’ll likely go with the B&W companion on a slider as I’m doing considerably more hauling this year. Otherwise I’d likely go the AUH route as I can’t lift anything heavy. Hope this was helpful more the confusing.
 
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Old 03-16-2018, 12:23 AM
ysgi
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Primary Role: fifth wheel
Second: Will bounce back/forth plenty. And although I can (hopefully) still wrestle a CURT 5er hitch, I'd rather not.
Third: I'll probably pay to have it installed.
My biggest concern is making sure that the large footprint of the AUH is not too big for something like a

B&W GNRK1117 - Turnover Ball Gooseneck Hitch.

The bed, as you all know, is aluminum and I want that AUH to sit on something SOLID !!!!
Is this B&W the right one ????

Thnx

Originally Posted by Bill_The_PA View Post
K hereís my advice.
First. What is the primary role. Gooseneck or fifth wheel
Second. how often are you going to bounce back and forth with an empty bed or need the flat box space.
Third. Who is doing this work.
Answer these and your half way there.
I have the B&W turnover ball in my Ď16 F-150. Installation IMHO will be the same degree of difficulty as the OEM Fifth wheel/ gooseneck setup with one key difference. All the videos Iíve seen on installations of the OEM has the bed box being lifted off the frame approximately 3-4Ē to allow the plate to slide in. This method is probably easier if your not working from a hoist. With B&W this should not be the case. Drilling the holes should be a snap as all 17-18 SDs have small 1/8Ē holes as pilots but a sprayed in liner will make this difficult from in the bed but still should be seen from below.
Gooseneck is the best Wt saver but again what are you hauling? I believe the B&W turnover ball system is lighter then the OEM But I cant say 100%. Both ate great products. The 17-18 MY SDs sit higher then previous years so the Anderson UH is a good way to go to clear the box rails when towing 5vers. Via gooseneck however, it does take up a lot of bed space; it has a large footprint. Youíll likely have lots of payload for most Fifth wheel rigs so either the OEM hitch (Reese I think) or the B&W companion (which is a two piece so lighter two step lift) are great choices. For me as my 5th wheel can be hauled via gooseneck (without voiding the warranty) Iíll continue to haul this way provided I have sufficient clearance. If not Iíll likely go with the B&W companion on a slider as Iím doing considerably more hauling this year. Otherwise Iíd likely go the AUH route as I canít lift anything heavy. Hope this was helpful more the confusing.
 
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  #6  
Old 03-16-2018, 12:28 AM
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Originally Posted by ysgi View Post
Primary Role: fifth wheel
Second: Will bounce back/forth plenty. And although I can (hopefully) still wrestle a CURT 5er hitch, I'd rather not.
Third: I'll probably pay to have it installed.
My biggest concern is making sure that the large footprint of the AUH is not too big for something like a

B&W GNRK1117 - Turnover Ball Gooseneck Hitch.

The bed, as you all know, is aluminum and I want that AUH to sit on something SOLID !!!!
Is this B&W the right one ????

Thnx
the 1117 is for 4X4 and the 1116 is the 4X2

 
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Old 03-16-2018, 01:02 AM
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Originally Posted by ysgi View Post
Primary Role: fifth wheel
Second: Will bounce back/forth plenty. And although I can (hopefully) still wrestle a CURT 5er hitch, I'd rather not.
Third: I'll probably pay to have it installed.
My biggest concern is making sure that the large footprint of the AUH is not too big for something like a

B&W GNRK1117 - Turnover Ball Gooseneck Hitch.

The bed, as you all know, is aluminum and I want that AUH to sit on something SOLID !!!!
Is this B&W the right one ????

Thnx
sorry didnít see your entire reply. With your answers Iíd say the turnover ball and AUH ARE a great match. Just some folks have or like to have lots of stuff (tool bos fire wood bikes beer etc ) in the bed so the Reese curt or companion off just that much more space.
 
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Old 03-16-2018, 08:47 AM
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The Andersen is what I'll choose when we head the 5th wheel route. The weight savings and ease of removal/install make it worth it.
 
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Old 03-16-2018, 08:58 AM
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As to your original question, ball or puck:

When I was researching the Andersen, they didn't have a puck option. You can either get one that connects to the ball, or one that connects to rails. So, if you went the puck route, you'd also need a puck to rails adapter in order to use the Andersen. The ball you can just straight up use.
 
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Old 03-16-2018, 10:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Kaadk View Post
As to your original question, ball or puck:

When I was researching the Andersen, they didn't have a puck option. You can either get one that connects to the ball, or one that connects to rails. So, if you went the puck route, you'd also need a puck to rails adapter in order to use the Andersen. The ball you can just straight up use.
no he can use the ball from The B&W turnover ball. No chains needed with the AUH
 

Last edited by Bill_The_PA; 03-16-2018 at 06:07 PM. Reason: Spelling errors
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  #11  
Old 03-16-2018, 01:57 PM
lovetorv
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I have used Andersen Ultimate since 2013 with many miles and can say its a good system. I will never go back to the traditional fifth wheel head and all the cumbersome issues that entails. I like the Andersen so much I had the original steel version and recently replaced it with the new aluminum version.

I do like to put a rubber bed mat between the bed and the Andersen but that is just a personal preference, and mostly due to what I used the bed for when not using the Andersen.
 
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Old 03-19-2018, 05:18 PM
ysgi
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I spoke to a rep from Andersen on Friday and he recommended a Blue Ox turnover ball.
 
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Old 03-19-2018, 07:42 PM
dieseldrive
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I have had both, factory prep in my 2016 I just sold, and rails in my 03 (which I am now using). I have had the 03 since new and really don't find the rails to be "in my way". I had thought about making some plywood "spacers" to fit between the rails (under a spare bed mat) to make a flat floor, but just never had the need. The rail kits are now very easy to install compared to the old days with the custom brackets. Also, the Reese ISR kit has two install options, 4 bolt, or 8 bolt. If you choose the 4 bolt setup it means that you will only have four 5/8 inch holes in your bed, and the hitch will be about an 1 1/2 inches closer to the tailgate (handy for shortbed trucks without slider hitches.

I am not bashing the factory prep, but I am not sure I would get it next time (if I ordered a new truck). I didn't like the 5 huge holes in the bed (it really isn't a flat floor due to the covers for the holes), and I didn't like the 108 pound payload reduction (a good bit heavier than a rail set up), and I don't like the current $500 price tag ($370 was more reasonable 16 and 17, and I don't like that your hitch choices are limited. For example, If you use the Anderson Ultimate factory puck setup, the base of the hitch is HUGE and takes up a ton of bed space (check it out).

The benefits of ISR (to me) is 4 small holes (if you use the 4 bolt install option) in the bed versus 5 HUGE holes, HUGE selection of hitches (can use the same hitch in many trucks), and back to the Anderson Ultimate, compare their ISR to the factory puck hitch and you'll see what I mean about the base size. BTW, I use a BW Patriot on my ISR, and still have the Reese factory puck hitch from the 16 I sold. I like the BW much better. I only mention Anderson because that seems to be all the rage lately (if ***** were better 100% of over the road tractor-trailers wouldn't be using fifth wheels, it is the most secure hitch).

If my next truck doesn't already have factory prep when I get it, I will use ISR, but will modify it (weld 4 nuts to the frame brackets, and make proper spacers) so that I can quickly remove the rails with an impact wrench (I carry an HD 1/2 drive Dewalt cordless Impact anyway. I will also feel more safe with the hitch bolted down as opposed to the puck set up. I am sure they are fine, but if you have used a puck set up, you can't always get the puck latches so that they have zero clearance when you adjust them to fit your truck, and the can rattle. I just like bolts better.

Good luck!

Good luck (and if anyone is close to Charlotte and needs a Reese for the factory pucks, PM me for a deal (its too heavy to ship)
 
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Old 03-20-2018, 12:44 PM
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I had the dealer add the factory puck system. It was an additional $695 + $200 for labor. They had it done by lunch time with dropping it off first thing in the morning. I prefer this system much better due to you have full use of your bed with the hitch out, rails have always gotten in my way when loading pallets in the bed.
 
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Old 03-20-2018, 01:20 PM
dksmith17
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I'm a newb to the 5th wheel game and am choosing andersen

One thing I don't see talked about much with the Andersen.... If I get forgetful or just screw up the connection on a traditional hitch and pull off that thing is probably falling on my bed (or worse).
The Andersen isn't idiot proof but seems more so than traditional.
I also like the idea of setting up by just raising the camper off the hitch instead of pulling off every time. Of course, this is somewhat dependent on slope/height of setup.
 
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