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Where to run my fifth wheel?

I have an air slide fifth, pull a 48ft spread axle reefer with a 20in kingpin. Ive been running the fifth wheel in the furthest position to the rear of the truck which puts the kingpin directly in the center of the drives. With the 20in kingpin trailer I have a huge trailer gap. I was wondering if I could slide the fifth wheel forward about 1ft but wasnt sure if that was too much weight to be over the front drive axle or if Id wear out my wheel bearings or other damage doing that. If 1ft forward is too far, how far can I run it up or should I just leave it where it is, centered between the drives?

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the closer to the front is better,but you'll have to scale,and experiment on how to load and where to put the axle positions.because it's a 48ft,you'll have more options than a 53ft

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So running it closer to the front wont do any damage to the front drive axle?

by

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You won't cause damage to your drive axles no matter where your 5th wheel is set. Just make sure you don't overload your steer axle, by sliding the 5th wheel to far forward.

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I slide my 5th wheel all the time between empty and loaded . I leave two pins when empty not to get to close because that can be bad to and start at about 6pins before I weigh out, If I have room or need to adjust I do it when I weigh out. I prefer even Steven on the weight but will also adjust according to comfort . I've had no problems with bearings I pull reefer and a 53".

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You're legally allowed to have up to 20,000 lbs on your steer axle. You have to have the tires, axles, and springs to handle that weight, but it's possible. 12,000 lb front axles used to be pretty standard, but the past several years 13,500 has been getting more common. You can run that heavy without the DOT asking any questions. You just want to make sure that you're axle can handle it if they do!

Keep the gap between your cab and trailer as small as possible by running your fifth wheel as far forward as you can.

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I'm replying from the other side of the world (India), so my reply may not be relevant.

we are allowed 6 MT (13227lb) on steer, 10.2 MT (22487lb) on driven in a 4X2 or 19MT (41888lb) on tandem in 6X4.

Trailer axles are allowed the same, 19 MT (41888lb) on tandem but only 24 MT (52911lb)

I usually load up a new rig to just under gross weight, fill up completely then drive up to a weighing scale, and check the weight with only the tractor on the scale. Adjust the trailer axle positions to keep 25 Ton load on tractor, then reverse to get steer axle off the scale, and adjust the fifth wheel position to keep the authorized 6 tons on the steer axle. We mark this position, and then reduce load by 5 tons, by removing pallets in the center, lift the retractable axle of the tridem trailer to make it a tandem, and repeat the process, fifth wheel position usually doesnt change.

Depending on maker of undercarrage lifting the first of the tridems to make it a tandem usually retains the weight distribution, while lifting the third makes the trailer tail heavy.

Rahul

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