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F150 and a Gooseneck

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  • F150 and a Gooseneck

    I have found a fantastic deal on an almost new Sundowner gooseneck and am wondering if my 2017 F150 (V8) with 5 1/2 foot bed will work to pull it? Anyone have advice on a short bed truck?

  • #2
    My honest opinion? No. Short wheel bases with long trailers (you don't say how big of a GN you have) is just a bad idea. In cases of sudden stops, or where you swerve, the trailer will lift the rear wheels or snap the truck around.

    Additionally, you need to check that the load on the suspension is within the capabilities of your truck. Also, make sure your brakes on the truck are rated for more than the trailer. You do NOT want to rely on the trailer brakes to help stop you.

    I've had my share of truck/trailer accidents (jack-knife, broadsided, broken axles, lost brakes,...). You want to make sure you have more than you need considering it is you and your horses on the road.

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    • #3
      Likely not a good idea but you might get better advice by clarifying how long is the GN trailer? Dressing room? Two horse presumably? Terrain you’ll be hauling over?

      Comment


      • #4
        I have a 2018 crew cab short bed V8 F-150. No way would I use it to haul a gooseneck.

        Honestly, I've been pretty disappointed in the towing performance of this truck. I've got a 2 horse bumper pull that's within the rated towing capacity of the truck, but I just don't feel like it handles the load as well as my old truck (2003 F-150 V8 regular cab) did.
        Last edited by NoSuchPerson; Jan. 10, 2020, 01:12 PM.
        "Facts are meaningless. You can use facts to prove anything
        that's even remotely true."

        Homer Simpson

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        • #5
          Also, how long is the truck? What kind of cab is it? That will make a difference in the wheelbase length.

          I tow a gooseneck with a short bed 3/4 ton Chevy, but their short bed is 6.5', so a whole foot longer than yours.

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          • #6
            I know several people that tow a two horse aluminum gooseneck with a 1/2 ton. The 1/2 tons have biggest motor option and seem to tow, and stop, just fine. It would depend on your trailer and your towing needs. My friend with the 5 1/2 foot bed has a gooseneck extender and is limited in where she can turn around however.
            http://weanieeventer.blogspot.com/

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            • #7
              I have a 2010 F150 and haul a 2H with dressing Hawk GN that has a 17' box. It has the 5.5 foot bed.

              I do have a 9 inch gooseneck extender/coupler, which makes it so I don't crunch my cab in tight spots. but otherwise, my setup hauls like a dream. I did invest in a good brake box, which any truck/trailer should have, but the truck handles my trailer easily.

              My family used to have a Chevy with a 454 engine pulling a 36 foot box (4 horse with 10' living quarters). I started driving that rig in the mountains on my 16th birthday, and ran it for many years. I sure can stop a hell of a lot faster with my F150 and baby GN! No comparison. I like the stability of a GN, and would never go back to bumper pull. I also don't think I'd upgrade as my truck is my daily driver and honestly a longer truck won't fit in my garage, something that matters in the lake effect snow belt!

              The only downside is that I wouldn't use it to haul 3 horses, and I have 3 horses, so any plans of taking the whole crew somewhere are futile. Probably best for my wallet anyway.

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              • #8
                I'll only speak to the bed length as I know nothing about that particular trucjk- but unless the gooseneck is a v nose - your turning situation is going to be pretty challenging. Definitely get a extender, and be prepared to not have to get into super tight places.

                If you've never driven a gooseneck before you really should take it to a large empty parking lot and practice a bit. It's pretty freaky to see how close the trailer appears out the rear view mirror, and you need to get used to how tight they turn to avoid going over tons of curbs.

                I drive a ridiculously large fifth wheel with my SO's race car in it. My truck has a 6.5 foot bed - we spent the money for the sliding hitch, and the trailer has a fairly substantial v-nose. It has the advantage of helping with the turning radius and with wind resistance for fuel mileage. I know that a sliding hitch isn't available for a gooseneck, which is why if you do it - get the coupler extender if it won't overload the truck past the axle.

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                • #9
                  In addition to what other folks have said I don't think your F150 will meet the payload of your loaded GN. My 2H GN weighed 4400# empty. Add a horse and it was 5600#. Add tack into the dressing room and it got it up to 6000#. You need to take 20% of that as tongue weight that will rest in the bed of your truck -- so 1200#.

                  I don't know you truck ratings, but you can figure it out. Just google the GCVWR and you will find trailer sites that tell you how to calc it. The Ford dealers don't know, that is for sure!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    ^ What BlueDrifter said. Its really the payload capacity (how much weight you can put in the bed of the truck) that limits the F150s from towing gooseneck trailers. I have a 2011 F150 5.0L (V8) with the standard 6.5' bed, supercrew cab, FX4. I'm looking to upgrade my truck in order to purchase a gooseneck - a 2 horse sundowner exceeds my payload capacity (but not my towing capacity - there is a difference!). You'll need to look up the specifics of your make/model/options - but I believe you're <1500 lbs.

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                    • #11
                      I have a 2H Sundowner I pull with a 2019 Chevy Silverado, but like others in this thread, I have the 6.5 foot bed and my trailer has a V nose. I personally wouldn't pull a gooseneck with a 5.5 foot bed.

                      When deciding whether or not to get my gooseneck, I used this link from B&W hitches to make sure that my trailer was within the capabilities of my truck: https://www.bwtrailerhitches.com/towing-help-gooseneck. It was VERY useful.

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                      • #12
                        I've had the opposite experience from the above comments with v-nose goosenecks (could purely be based on the specific rig I drove though). I haul with a 2500HD with a 6.5' bed and my personal trailer is a Kiefer gooseneck, which has a flat nose with tapered sides. I borrowed a friend's Sundowner with a v-nose and had much less wiggle room when negotiating my tight barnyard. When I crank the wheel with my trailer, the tapered side becomes parallel to the back of my cab. When I crank it in a v-nose, the pointed side would be pointing at my cab. My Kiefer is longer than the Sundowner I borrowed but it handles better in tighter spaces given the nose design.
                        "Last time I picked your feet, you broke my toe!"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          The answer should be NO. And it actually has less to do with the wheelbase length (though the longer it is the better, yes) or the bed length...
                          I could stand on a soap box for a week, I have made myself a student of the subject over many years.
                          Experts - and by this I mean qualified people who study horse trailer accident data, not auto dealers (most of whom have never towed a loaded horse trailer) - recommend that you do not exceed 80% of the tow vehicle's published gross combination weight rating (GCWR). The GCWR is the weight of the truck, its passengers, payload (if any), cargo AND the weight of the trailer and its contents.
                          Why 80%? Horses do not tow like boats or RVs. They are a dynamic, top heavy load that has a very high center of gravity and their own inertia. You might be able to PULL a loaded two horse gooseneck (most of those have dressing rooms, adding to their weight) but you might not be able to STOP it or haul it out of trouble under anything but the most ideal driving circumstances or conditions.
                          Most 1/2 ton pick up trucks - even the very stoutest of them - rarely have a GCWR that would safely meet that 80% recommendation. .
                          As an example, say a 1/2 tron truck is a 4X4 with a V8 engine, has a huge 163" wheelbase and an 8' bed... Its published GCWR is still just 12,000lbs. Towing horses, using the 80% calculation, would mean you should not exceed a combination weight of 9,600lbs. This same vehicle's curb weight is 4,600lbs. Add two people, a dog, tack, 20 gallons of water (which weighs over 8 pounds each, so over 150lbs) and THEN add in the weight of the trailer itself (most two horse goosenecks with a dressing room are around 4,000lbs), hay, the trailer mats, spare tires and two 1,200lb horses? Thats a weight of - conservatively - 11,600lbs., way over what is advised by the folks that study wrecks.
                          Hauling horses is risky enough. Don't under truck - it just isn't worth it!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            The above weight analysis puts my 2500HD out of the running to tow any gooseneck so it doesn't sound right to me.
                            http://weanieeventer.blogspot.com/

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I agree about the payload capacity being the most important, and there are so many versions of the F150, it is hard to figure out. If you know which truck you own ( eg wheel base, axle ratio, 4x4 or not, any options like max tow package or max payload package) you can check this. You can find which truck you have in the purchase paperwork if you bought it new (you can also get some info from the sticker inside the back edge of the driver’s door, or ask the service dept at your dealership look it up), then look up payload capacity in your owner’s manual. I assumed that my f-150 would be good as it has the max tow package, but when I looked up the payload capacity, it would be maxed out with the 4200 lb gooseneck I was looking at. So now I am looking at a bumper pull with a big tack room that I can put a bunk in.

                              Also to save you some grief, if you get a bumper pull, get an equalizer hitch no matter what the trailer dealership tells you. I was told I did not need one, but when I checked my hitch (a class 4, which is probably what your truck has), I discovered it could only pull a trailer with a tongue weight of 500 lbs without an equalizer hitch (tongue weight on a bumper pull is 5-10% of the loaded trailer weight).

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Absolutely not.
                                "Punch him in the wiener. Then leave." AffirmedHope

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                                • #17
                                  Get the Sundowner and upgrade your truck to a 3/4 ton.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I have a Chevy 1500 with a 2 horse gooseneck. We bought the trunk with towing in mind, so it has the biggest axial, engine and transmission coolers for example. My first degree is in mechanical engineering and when I was looking at everything, I found every calculations I could find about trailering and did them myself. But you need to do it for your specific truck.

                                    It was with the tolerances for what I was going to be doing with a safety margin. I never had any problems with it even in the mountains of west Virginia. I did get an adam aluminum skinned trailer with a dry weight of 3200 lbs, which helps.

                                    When we moved from va to Ne, we had to weight everything for the navy to pay for the move. So we had my horse, the otherside of the trailer packed with things, dressing room filled including 5 hay nails plus 50+ saddles in the gooseneck (18 lbs each). It was at the maxweight of the capabilities of the truck and even in the mountains it was fine. Not what I would normally ever recommend doing something like that.

                                    I normally only hauled my horse and stuff. Every so often a friends horse too.
                                    Jacobson's Saddlery, LLC
                                    www.thesaddlefits.com
                                    Society of Master Saddlers Qualified Fitter

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