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Old 08-01-2016, 08:57 AM   #1
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$20k to buy truck for 12k 5er - What do you get?

Hello all,

I currently have a 2010 f150 and bought my first TT back in February of this year. It weighs just under 8k loaded. Since February, Ive towed it 7,445 miles and spent 35 nights in it. I dont see my use pattern tapering off anytime soon, so my wife and I are considering a 5th wheel for a variety of reasons. I find myself most interested in 5ers that GVWR around 12,000 lbs. My current truck is not up to the job of towing something like that, so I am trying to wrap my head around the idea of a new (used) HD truck.

Requirements:
*Truck must cost under $20,000
*Crew cab (4 doors)
*Must be able to safely pull a 12k 5th wheel
*Reliable enough to not need any major service/repairs in the next couple years

My use pattern would indicate (to me) that I should probably be looking primarily at a diesel truck, but the amount of miles on sub $20k trucks scares me a bit. I know diesels can run for multiple hundreds of thousands of miles, but I dont want to be spending multiple thousands of dollars a year keeping it running.

It seems like all the "Big Three" diesel trucks have their pros and cons (IMO):

Ford: I've always been a ford guy, but Im not dead set on it. I am pretty hesitant to buy a 6.0 or 6.4 ford though from a reliability standpoint. The 6.7 I like, but probably not going to find one in my price range.

Dodge: I love the cummins motor, but I live in Ohio, so most Dodges have really bad rust here. I also feel that Dodges have a somewhat lower build quality

Chevy: Chevy trucks have always been rather uninspiring to me. I cant really find anything wrong with them, but for some reason I just dont really warm up to them. However, for my price range, a Duramax might be the most reliable?


Looking to hear some real life experiences about what brand/year/miles truck you have, pros and cons.

How many miles is too many when looking at a used Diesel in this price range? How many miles can Ford/Chevy/Dodge go before needing considerable expensive maintenance/repairs?

Thanks in advance!

Alex
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Old 08-01-2016, 09:55 AM   #2
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Good luck no matter the brand with those requirements. Any 3/4 or 1 ton you find in that price range will likely be very very used. But if you're not in a hurry, you may find one.
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Old 08-01-2016, 01:33 PM   #3
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what about a GAS F 350.. or F 350 dually Gas.. I understand they are hard to find.. and make sure you get one with a 4:30 final drive.

2 wheel drive is much cheaper.. and if you can live with the "XL" interior..

the Ford 6.2L Gas is a work horse. 2011 and up.


my 2012 does 10,000 loaded trailer with 1,500 in the truck bed. no problem with the 3:73 final gears.
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Old 08-01-2016, 01:42 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Chuck_Hammer View Post
what about a GAS F 350.. or F 350 dually Gas.. I understand they are hard to find.. and make sure you get one with a 4:30 final drive.

2 wheel drive is much cheaper.. and if you can live with the "XL" interior..

the Ford 6.2L Gas is a work horse. 2011 and up.


my 2012 does 10,000 loaded trailer with 1,500 in the truck bed. no problem with the 3:73 final gears.
.
.

Im not opposed to getting a gasser at all! They are just much harder to find - and MUCH harder to find one with anything over the XL interior... I think I could live with it, but my wife probably could not I guess that is some of what I am looking to hear from you guys - do you think with 10k heavy towing miles a year that justifies a diesel or is that gasser territory still
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Old 08-01-2016, 05:22 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck_Hammer View Post
what about a GAS F 350.. or F 350 dually Gas.. I understand they are hard to find.. and make sure you get one with a 4:30 final drive.

2 wheel drive is much cheaper.. and if you can live with the "XL" interior..

the Ford 6.2L Gas is a work horse. 2011 and up.


my 2012 does 10,000 loaded trailer with 1,500 in the truck bed. no problem with the 3:73 final gears.
.
.
This is sound advice. I would ignore anyone telling you to buy a 200,000 mile diesel with unknown history. A 2500 or f250 in gas will probably have just the right amount of payload to do what you are trying to do. A 6 0r 7 year old gas 3/4 or 1ton can be had for around 20k in most places with decent mileage.
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Old 08-01-2016, 05:57 PM   #6
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Quote:
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Im not opposed to getting a gasser at all! They are just much harder to find - and MUCH harder to find one with anything over the XL interior...
A Ford gasser in an F-350 SRW CrewCab will be just adequate. But with your budget, you're either looking at an older diesel with many many miles on it, or you could have this 2011 XLT SRW that has less than 110,000 miles on it for less than $20k.

Cars for Sale: Used 2011 Ford F350 in 2WD Crew Cab Super Duty, Odessa TX: 79761 Details - Truck - Autotrader

The website says that's a diesel, but I suspect it's really a gasser. Call them to find out for sure. If that's a diesel, then the price is too low so be wary.

I found that one near me in west Texas by going to New Car Prices and Used Car Book Values - NADAguides and looking for a 2011 F-350. They also had another ad for a 2011 diesel, but it was almost $28K. However, it's at Sewell Ford in Odessa, so I'll bet it's legit. (I ordered my '99.5 F-250 PSD from Sewell back in 1999 when my nephew was the fleet manager there.)

An F-350 SRW gasser will be at the limit of it's towing capability and payload capacity with a 12K 5er, but it can get the job done if you don't insist on being the first 5er to the top of the pass.

Personally, I would pay the extra and get the diesel. This one is in Odessa TX too.
Cars for Sale: Used 2011 Ford F350 in 4x4 Crew Cab XLT, Odessa TX: 79761 Details - Truck - Autotrader

Note that diesel is a 2011 model, the first Ford 6.7L diesel. The 6.0L and 6.4L predesessors built by International were trouble-prone so I would not buy one of those. But Ford did it right with the 6.7L.
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Old 08-01-2016, 09:17 PM   #7
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We traded a '09 F350 Crew Cab Lariat 4x4 SRW (bought used 4 years ago with 40k mi) for the new '16 dually in our sig. It was a 6.4 diesel, and about every trinket available including DVD and NAV. It had 62k miles. I had it "decked out" and it was a very sharp truck. Had all the service records as well. It lasted on the lot less than 2 days. They were asking $31,500. Lady that bought it added extended warranty and had a like new truck for half price of a '16. Point I'm making is for not a lot more coin, there are lower mileage trucks out there. My wife and I really didn't want a new truck, given we only drive it around 5k a year. We searched for a used dually and we're into this new one for $5,600 over a used '14 that had 30k mi.
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Old 08-01-2016, 09:24 PM   #8
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Smokey is right about engines. My family has been lucky I guess, Folks have had a 7.3, 6.0, and early ('11) 6.7. I had the 6.4 and now a late 6.7. All have been relatively trouble free. And Ford did get it right with their 6.7. We were content with our 6.4 other than fuel mileage (not that I really buy it for that) it had plenty of power. The 6.7 is nice, it's quieter, smoother, more hp and torque than the 6.4. Plus it gets better mileage. Wife and I are taking our first trip in a couple weeks, I'm anxious to try the new truck out.
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Old 08-02-2016, 05:37 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the input everyone. I am a little surprised by the recommendations to get a gasser honestly, but I realize you may be saying that since it is not necessarily the best option, but rather just the best option in my price range. From my research, about 75-80% of guys seem to recommend biting the $$bullet and getting a diesel.

Also, here in OH I really prefer a 4x4 for the winters, but also it would be very important for the muddy spring season. Most of my trips are for work and i usually boondocking in a large field somewhere. Im concerned that if I got a 2wd, I wouldnt be able to get in or out of some places in the wet spring. I've needed the 4x4 on my f150 several times thus far with my current TT.

So maybe for me the answer is to just wait a bit until a more suitable tow rig is affordable. Seems like I really need to be considering $30k to be the upper limit instead of $20... I kind of already suspected that and you guys confirmed it.
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Old 08-02-2016, 07:00 AM   #10
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I have hauled 12,000 pound 5ers with a Ford F350 V10 gasser and now an F250 with a 6.7 diesel. The V10 did a great job, regardless of the naysayers. But it wasn't a diesel. The gas mileage was, ahem, ####(insert your own negative word here). The rpm needed to haul that 5er up a long hill was high and the transmission in a much lower gear - but both were built to handle those extremes at the cost of burned gasoline. We took an identical trip with both trucks. The gasser would crest a hill at say 40-45 mph and in 2nd or 3rd at 4000+ rpm. The diesel, 2200 rpm and in 4th or 5th and at the speed limit.

To purchase - the gas powered truck will be less expensive. To maintain, also less expensive. If you are going to use the truck as a daily driver, the gasser will pump out heat in the winter after only a couple miles, the diesel - eventually - maybe - depending on the length of your trip. Are you going to haul your 5er a lot or to a seasonal CG and a short trip or two? If a lot, the diesel may be best. If only a couple times a year - that diesel is a real expensive truck.

Of course if you really lust for that diesel pickup - by all means, get one

Now, there are the next considerations - long bed/short bed - dually/ single rear wheels - standard cab/extended cab/crew cab, basic trim/mid/high/premium.

Just a note about the Ford long vs short bed trucks - short bed trucks have small fuel tanks ~28 gallon vs ~39 gallon which has a distinct bearing on your driving 'fun' while hauling a 5th wheel.
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Old 08-02-2016, 07:16 AM   #11
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Ford has been putting their V10 engine in the motorhome chassis since 1999. Many of them have a 26,000 lb GCWR. Yes they get 6-7 mpg, but they are also a giant brick pushing all that air. Some of the newer, larger Ford V10 based MH's have a 30K GCWR.
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Old 08-02-2016, 08:22 AM   #12
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I have hauled 12,000 pound 5ers with a Ford F350 V10 gasser and now an F250 with a 6.7 diesel. The V10 did a great job, regardless of the naysayers. But it wasn't a diesel. The gas mileage was, ahem, ####(insert your own negative word here). The rpm needed to haul that 5er up a long hill was high and the transmission in a much lower gear - but both were built to handle those extremes at the cost of burned gasoline. We took an identical trip with both trucks. The gasser would crest a hill at say 40-45 mph and in 2nd or 3rd at 4000+ rpm. The diesel, 2200 rpm and in 4th or 5th and at the speed limit.

To purchase - the gas powered truck will be less expensive. To maintain, also less expensive. If you are going to use the truck as a daily driver, the gasser will pump out heat in the winter after only a couple miles, the diesel - eventually - maybe - depending on the length of your trip. Are you going to haul your 5er a lot or to a seasonal CG and a short trip or two? If a lot, the diesel may be best. If only a couple times a year - that diesel is a real expensive truck.

Of course if you really lust for that diesel pickup - by all means, get one

Now, there are the next considerations - long bed/short bed - dually/ single rear wheels - standard cab/extended cab/crew cab, basic trim/mid/high/premium.

Just a note about the Ford long vs short bed trucks - short bed trucks have small fuel tanks ~28 gallon vs ~39 gallon which has a distinct bearing on your driving 'fun' while hauling a 5th wheel.
Good thoughts and well written.
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Old 08-02-2016, 09:14 AM   #13
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Just an FYI - I would try hard to find a 2011.

The reason:

Ford - 6.7 litre diesel
Chevy - much improved frame
Ram - they tighten all bolts holding it together.

The 2011 6.7 litre diesel engine was recalled for a programming change to produce 800ft. lbs. of torque with 400 HP. It is quite a towing machine.
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Old 08-02-2016, 09:21 AM   #14
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if interested.. Ford has a website for there F53 truck drivetrain . V10 and 6 speed.. same as F 350 V10...different frame ..


that drivetrain is used in the Georgetown motorhome. and others. and have for years.
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