Retractable fifth wheel for tight parking spots

Richard sez, "This ingenious hacker from Egypt put a fifth wheel, mounted perpendicular to the other four, on the back of his beater car. The wheel can be raised or lowered, depending on if he is parking or driving. The purpose is so that he can get in and out of the very tightest parking spaces. Probably better than having two brawny men lift the car into place!"

egyptian invention (Thanks, Richard!)



  1. Kudos for imagination but… the same device appeared in an American newsreel at least sixty years ago.

    I’d just get a smaller car.

  2. You’d get a smaller car than a LeCar?

    I want dramamine- that camera guy needs to chill out.

  3. @ #1: I hope you’re just trolling… get a smaller car, seriously? Is that possible?

    This is awesome! Would be perfect for SF. I’m really curious how he rigged the drivetrain to connect to the wheel, given that the wheel has hydraulic height adjustment. Not a straightforward feat by any means.

  4. pfft. Amateur. He had at least two feet of space in front of him.

    I am against this device only because it would rob me of the joy of watching inept people attempt to parallel park.

    …all about life’s simple pleasures.

  5. Extremely cool.
    But is the engineering worth the extra 3-4 inches it gives you? Parallel parking can get you awfully close in.

  6. @#5 it’s not a mean feat at all. I think he would have a seperate, electric motor for the 5th wheel.
    A nice piece of home hacking

  7. Yea, I saw that newsreel as well. It was something from the late 40’s I believe though I think the wheel was more in the center as oppose to this which is in the back of the car.

  8. Very cool.

    But how do the people on either end of you get out?

    If the car on the other side of *them* is close, they’re trapped.

  9. I wonder if this is his spare tire?

    I remember seeing video, maybe from the old Discovery Channel show “Beyond 2000,” of a car that was capable of turning all four wheels completely perpendicular to the body so that it could simply pull up next to a space and then move sideways into it. That seems even easier than this fifth wheel. I wonder why that innovation isn’t seen on all cars right now. Probably the extra mods on the axle drive up the cost and possibly add weight that results in worse gas mileage.

  10. That was fun to watch and it’s a clever solution. However, he’s giving up probably much of his trunk space for the “convenience” of not having to parallel park.

  11. Reminds me of the car Bucky Fuller designed. Maybe the same car as in the aformentioned newsreels?

  12. Being a UK driver, I’ve always thought of myself as no mean thing when it comes to parallel parking, soory US and Australian frineds your cities are to big n wide as are your cars. Then i went out in Paris with my cousin in his banjaxed old Fiat.

    The man can fold space.

    A lot of Parisians can.

    Honestly they’re like giuld steersmen from Dune I can not figure how he parked a car in a gap that was to my certain knowledge SHORTER than the car.

  13. In Paris, the men can park in a shoebox and every woman can twist a scarf to look like a catwalk model going shopping. It’s just Paris. try it in London or NYC, badly dinged car and a broad with a scarf.

  14. Rachel Maddow just mentioned this BoingBoing article on her MSNBC show — and she mentioned BoingBoing by name!

  15. It’s pretty awesome, but couldn’t he take a little wheel off a hand truck? it’s not much of a trip.

  16. Invented in the USA back in the 1950s by Irvin M Carpenter of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma… with Patent.

  17. What’s interesting is that that car is front-wheel drive, which means he couldn’t just take power off the rear diff (because there isn’t one) as in earlier iterations of this idea.

    Fuller’s Dymaxion cars only had three wheels- imagine a teardrop with two wheels at the big (front) end and one at the small end. They could pirouette about one front wheel.

  18. There is no power, watch the last part of the video, the 5th wheel is freely spinning, he’s using the power steering to whip it back in…

  19. Wasn’t this on the Red Green Show. I’m pretty sure he put one of these together with duct tape.

  20. I thought this was great, I don’t care if it’s been done before.

    Why is it when someone does something cool, someone else always has to piss on it…

    Hat off tinkerer.

  21. i did that invention …not copied at all ..when i started to do it i checked the net there was nothing like it …any way i spent my efforts and my mony for your nice comments thanks for your consideration
    my name is esslam and my mail is

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