How to Calculate If Gooseneck Trailer Will Make the Turn

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Gooseneck trailers are the standard for heavy duty hauling, especially when hauling live stock such as cows and horses. Although traditional ball type trail hitches are more common and easier to install, gooseneck hitches can tolerate a load of about 30,000 lbs., making them far more durable. Another advantage gooseneck trailers have over traditional ball hitches is a smaller turning radius due to the placement of the gooseneck hitch in the center of the pickup truck bed. A few simple measurements will tell you what the turning radius of your trailer is, so you can tell whether you make that turn or not.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Measure the distance between the point of the gooseneck hitch connection in the middle of the truck bed and the center of the trailer wheel. If your trailer has two axles then measure from the hitch to the point in the middle of the two axles. For example, you might measure a distance of 10 feet between your hitch and trailer wheel.

  • Multiply the distance you measured in step one by two to find the turning radius of your trailer. In the example, the turning radius is 10 times two, or 20 feet.

  • Measure the distance from the edge of your vehicle to the edge of the road with the turn you want to make. You might have 15 feet to make a turn on a residential street, for example.

  • Compare the distance from step three to the turning radius you calculated in step two. If the turning radius is less than the distance, then the trailer would successfully make the turn. In the example, since the radius is 20 feet and there is only 15 feet of road to turn on, the trail would not make the turn.

Tips & Warnings

  • Gooseneck trailers turn more sharply than the vehicle they are hitched too because of the hitching mechanism not being mounted on the back of the vehicle. Be sure the space you have is sufficient not only for the vehicle but also the leading edge of the trailer to clear.

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