Towing a gooseneck with a short bed truck

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Towing a gooseneck with a short bed truck

This is a discussion on Towing a gooseneck with a short bed truck within the Horse Trailers forums, part of the Barns, Boarding, and Farms category

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    10-11-2011, 08:05 PM
Towing a gooseneck with a short bed truck

I have a chev silverado 1500 4 x 2 with a crew cab (4 full size doors) and a short bed, 5 ft 8 in. I have only ever towed my 'tag along' trailer with it.
Recently I picked up a 2 horse gooseneck for a very good price, had it dropped off at my barn. I am getting very different opinions (from trailer shops) whether or not I can actually pull the trailer.
It has nothing to do with the size or power of my truck, but whether a truck with such a short bed can pull a gooseneck without issues.
There is an extension for the trailer 'foot' or coupler that I can get, but this is an older model trailer, and the coupler is permanent, non adjustable. In other words, it does not have a 'sleeve'. So in order for me to get the extension, I would have to get the trailer to a weld shop to modify the coupler tube.
I would like to find out before I spend the money getting a hitch installed in my truck! Lol
The problem is that these 'extreme short bed' trucks are fairly new, you didn't see them around 10 yrs ago.
One trailer place suggested I place the hitch in the proper place in the truck bed (over the axle), then back into the trailer at a 90 degree then a 45 degree angle to see if I have enough clearance. In other words, 'pretend' to hook up, and set up into the extreme angles.
The area I am at is not big horse country, so I am asking for opinions from other parts of the US and Canada.
Have you ever seen a shrt bed truck pulling a gooseneck?

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    10-11-2011, 08:19 PM
Green Broke
Back the truck under the hitch to where the ball would be and see, you either have clearance or you don't.

Read this article, has pics of a truck like yours,, looks like you will need a custom hitch, that wont just bolt in,
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    10-11-2011, 08:22 PM
I see trucks like that pulling trailers all the time. As long as you remember to watch the corner of your cab when you turn you should have no problems. Even with the short bed you will still be able to turn much sharper than with a bumper pull.
    10-11-2011, 08:24 PM
Super Moderator
I think your biggest issue is going to be in turning. You have to be really careful with your turn radius. In a long bed you can jack-knife a gooseneck w/ no issues but with a short bed you've got to be really careful because you can hit the cab of the truck w/ the trailer. I think that will be your biggest issue.
    10-12-2011, 01:20 AM
That trailer has a wide nose and not a narrow one. That means you could definitely jack knife the trailer into your cab. What that one shop adviced is something well worth trying. What they neglected to add is that truck to trailer angle is also important. It can clear on flat ground but when on uneven ground, if close they can still hit each other just something to consider when measuring how close they come to each other.

If it looks like it will hit then you have two choices. Sell the trailer or modify it with an offset.

Just an FYI, my uncle is in the RV business and laughs at people who want to tow a gooseneck in a short bed truck. He'll do it because that's what they are paying him to do but if his advice is asked he'll tell them to not do it.
    10-12-2011, 01:57 AM
I have owned lots of short bed trucks, in fact that is all we have owned. My last truck was a Chevy Silverado crew cab short bed like you pictured above.
I have towed a gooseneck with every single short bed truck with no problems. From big bulky stock trailers to round front goosnecks to pointed goosenecks and have never had a jacknife, dent or anything in the cab. You just have to use common sense when turning.
My last gooseneck was a three horse slant, I pulled it loaded or unloaded with no issues. Anyone who says you can't pull a goosneck with a short bed is not being truthful.
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    10-12-2011, 02:05 AM
Here is a photo of my trailer and the bed of my truck.
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    10-12-2011, 02:16 AM
Thank you for all of your insights!
It was definitely the RV guys who were horrified at the idea. The horse trailer people are the ones who say it can be done. Go figure, lol. We are perhaps unconventional.
WyomingGrandma, it looks like your trailer weight is behind the axle. Are you using a coupler extension, or is that the actual ball placement?
    10-12-2011, 02:18 AM
Like Kevin, FP, and Wyoming said, trucks like that pull trailers like that all the time. The only thing to watch for is when you're turning to not turn too short and jack-knife the nose of the trailer into the cab. Though in all honesty, if you're pulling a loaded trailer, turning that tight is a bad idea anyway with a double axle trailer. Turning too short with it loaded can sometimes bend an axle, depending on the footing.
    10-12-2011, 12:22 PM
Originally Posted by Skipsfirstspike    
It was definitely the RV guys who were horrified at the idea. The horse trailer people are the ones who say it can be done. Go figure, lol. We are perhaps unconventional.
Not unconventional - we simply put more miles on our trailers than the folks who own RV's.

As has been said, you just need to watch turning -especially backing at an angle. I will admit to popping out my back window due to backing out of a hilly, angled spot at a show. Foolish. Let someone else hurry me. Never again!

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