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This 2003 Chevy 2500 shortbed had been purchased used and had been fitted with a fifth-wheel hitch at some point in its history. We don’t know what hitch it was or who installed it, but modern installation practice is to bolt on the mounting brackets, not weld them.
As the saying goes, “Measure twice, cut once,” but in the case of installing a fifth-wheel hitch, it’s more like, “Measure two-dozen times, drill once.” The base rails must be located so they are centered in the bed from front to back and side to side, and they must be parallel to each other and positioned so that they will line up correctly with mounting-bracket holes underneath. Sound intimidating? PullRite offers a template to make it easier.
The holes are then drilled to 5/8-inch in diameter. The other two adjacent holes are from the previous hitch.
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