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Old 03-20-2012, 10:03 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by J Birder View Post
I am planning on buying a new 5er and a used truck to pull it. The 27' 5er that I want is:
total dry weight 6419
pin dry weight 1391
GVWR 11,551

I could probably get by with a 1/2 ton, but I think performance in the mountains would not be very good. I finally decided to look for a 3/4 ton diesel. I have been surprised to find that there seem to be more 1 ton than 3/4 ton trucks on the market.

Is there much effect on fuel economy in moving up to a 1 ton? Other than price, are there any other disadvantages to a 1 ton?
We just purchased a 1 ton diesel dually (dodge ram 3500) and it gets 6 miles more to the gallon than our 1/2 ton Chevy pickup. We were quite surprised! Go for the 350 diesel you won't regret it!
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Old 03-20-2012, 10:16 PM   #16
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I have read on here so many times that diesel maintenance is a lot higher than gassers. I have to beg to defer. Which I do my own for the most part. But the oil change is about twice as much but you only have to change it half as often that is if you go 5k on a gasser. Fuel cost per gallon is a little higher but you get better MPG. If you on a DRW you have two extra tires. But if you keep the rotated they last about the same. I have found that I get more milage out of my one ton DRW than my old 3/4. And I have done the math it cost me 36 cents a mile for my half ton truck. And 32 cents a mile on my one ton 4x4 DRW. That's only 4 cents a mile cheaper but I have A LOT more truck to work with at a cheaper rate so I have to say ill stick with my one ton 4x4 DRW. But the choice is yours and only yours to make. Good luck and safe travels to you all.
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Old 03-21-2012, 01:48 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by wingnut60 View Post
One more time--dry weight is useless, just weigh it when you take it home and see...
Joe
I'm having trouble understanding this.

Weigh it when I take it home.
I can't take it home if I don't have a truck.
I don't know what truck to buy until I weigh it.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:49 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by BartLee View Post
...But the oil change is about twice as much but you only have to change it half as often that is if you go 5k on a gasser....
I change oil at 5k on both my diesel and my gasser. Are you saying I should go 10k on the diesel between changes?
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Old 03-21-2012, 08:08 AM   #19
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Birder,
Worded a little odd, I agree--but I was trying to get across the point that the dry weight will be under the delivered weight. If you size the truck to barely be under the dry weight, you will be overloaded from the start.
But you might be surprised at how many new owners do it this way...
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Old 03-21-2012, 08:28 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by J Birder View Post
I'm having trouble understanding this.

Weigh it when I take it home.
I can't take it home if I don't have a truck.
I don't know what truck to buy until I weigh it.
To estimate your required truck size, add to the dry weight:

Holding tank capacity x 8lbs, weight of occupants (you, wife, dog, bengal tiger), food, beverages, dishes, cleaning supplies lawn chairs, BBQ, cornhole boards, tools, fuel (LP and gas/diesel), clothes, beer, leveling planks, more beer, folding table, beach umbrella, etc...
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Old 03-21-2012, 08:34 AM   #21
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My experience with 1/2 ton pulling a travel trailer and maxing the ability of the truck @8000lbs is:

on flat ground, no problem - 8 mpg

on 6% grade, truck slows down to below 40 mph, after 6 mi of this, temp gage is getting into the red area with the tranny light flashing. (not good)

Upgraded to a duramax desiel 6.6 and took that same hill pulling a 5er @12,000lbs at 55-60 mph the whole way up every time. - 10 mpg, 16mpg without the 5er.

Desiel is the only way to go pulling a 5th wheel.
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Old 03-21-2012, 08:36 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ramblin

I change oil at 5k on both my diesel and my gasser. Are you saying I should go 10k on the diesel between changes?
I have always. Hanged mine at 10k I have some friends that run synthetics they send there oil to a LAN and have it tested. They change theres anywhere between 12 and 15k. I'm seriously thinking about going to synthetics myself. But yes run a good quality oil. Rotella T, Mobil, and go till 10 k no worrys.
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Old 03-21-2012, 09:32 AM   #23
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I change oil at 5k on both my diesel and my gasser. Are you saying I should go 10k on the diesel between changes?
Depends on which diesel engine, and the life that engine has to live. The correct oil change interval (OCI) can vary between about 3,000 miles and 12,000 miles. "Normal" is about 5,000 to 7,500 miles between oil/filter changes for older diesels if you want your engine to live to over 400,000 miles.

On any diesel engine I would have the used oil tested frequently, then go by the recommendations of the oil analysis provider.

Test the oil every oil change for the first three or four changes, to establish your oil change interval (OCI). Each time ask for a recommended OCI for your use of your engine. Then go by the OCI for the next oil change. If the OCI doesn't change after the second or third oil analysis, then have the oil analyzed only every third or fourth OCI to be sure the OCI doesn't change - as well as to be sure your engine is not going south for some reason.

Most modern diesel engines in RV service will go about 10,000 miles OCI. Some will go more. Older diesels, such as my '99.5 PowerStroke 7.3L would go only about 6,000 miles with my "severe duty" use of living in the dusty desert and towing slightly overloaded 90 percent of the miles on the each OCI.

Synthetic is a waste of money. You won't get any better OCI from synthetic than from a major brand of 15w40 turbo-diesel-rated dino oil, such as Shell Rotella T, Chevron DELO 400, or Mobil DELVAC. And your engine won't last one mile longer using synthetic. Synthetic is cost effective only for folks that invest in expensive oil filtration systems, then change the oil filters every few thousand miles (which means adding a coupla quarts of fresh oil to replace the worn-out oil additives), then go for long periods between oil changes, such as over 10,000 miles. But even with all that expense, they still have to pay for oil analysis to be sure their oil is still protecting their expensive engine.

I have used Blackstone Labs oil analysis for over 12 years. They give me excellent service.
Blackstone Labs

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Old 03-21-2012, 10:33 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by SmokeyWren View Post
Depends on which diesel engine, and the life that engine has to live. The correct oil change interval (OCI) can vary between about 3,000 miles and 12,000 miles. "Normal" is about 5,000 to 7,500 miles between oil/filter changes for older diesels if you want your engine to live to over 400,000 miles.

On any diesel engine I would have the used oil tested frequently, then go by the recommendations of the oil analysis provider.

Test the oil every oil change for the first three or four changes, to establish your oil change interval (OCI). Each time ask for a recommended OCI for your use of your engine. Then go by the OCI for the next oil change. If the OCI doesn't change after the second or third oil analysis, then have the oil analyzed only every third or fourth OCI to be sure the OCI doesn't change - as well as to be sure your engine is not going south for some reason.

Most modern diesel engines in RV service will go about 10,000 miles OCI. Some will go more. Older diesels, such as my '99.5 PowerStroke 7.3L would go only about 6,000 miles with my "severe duty" use of living in the dusty desert and towing slightly overloaded 90 percent of the miles on the each OCI.

Synthetic is a waste of money. You won't get any better OCI from synthetic than from a major brand of 15w40 turbo-diesel-rated dino oil, such as Shell Rotella T, Chevron DELO 400, or Mobil DELVAC. And your engine won't last one mile longer using synthetic. Synthetic is cost effective only for folks that invest in expensive oil filtration systems, then change the oil filters every few thousand miles (which means adding a coupla quarts of fresh oil to replace the worn-out oil additives), then go for long periods between oil changes, such as over 10,000 miles. But even with all that expense, they still have to pay for oil analysis to be sure their oil is still protecting their expensive engine.

I have used Blackstone Labs oil analysis for over 12 years. They give me excellent service.
Blackstone Labs

You may also enjoy the background story of Blackston Labs.
Tales from the Oily Side
Wow, thanks for that. (Apologies to the OP for hijacking his topic )

I'm tough on my dually, I pull HEAVY, so I'll continue my 5k intervals, but will send off for an analysis next oil change.
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Old 03-21-2012, 11:05 AM   #25
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For dually driveability in winter I throw 1000 lbs of bagged gravel in the rear.
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Old 03-21-2012, 11:47 AM   #26
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the 5er you are looking at is really close to the weight of my 25'ft 5er. I have towed mine mostly in the mountains here in utah. one long trip to the redwoods and down the coast back over lake tahoe and I can tell you personally I wouldnt want to do it with a 1/2 ton. I tow it with a 3/4 ton 99.5 7.3 powerstroke and ive never had the feeling of not having enough truck. 11-13mpg towing. oil changes are more costly when using rotella T but very easy to do yourself.
if you end up getting a dually with 4:10 gears I would have to say its overkill.. especially with the price of diesel. however if you ever decide on a bigger trailer, you wouldnt have to revisit this situation.

good luck!
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Old 03-21-2012, 01:06 PM   #27
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I have to agree with lynn boyd on towing mountains isue, like I mentioned before. I regularly have to tow up a section of hyway called the Malahat, a 25 km (16 mi) portion of Highway 1, winding and steep route over the 352 m (1,155 ft) elv much of has 6% grades. I used to have a F150 with 5.4l and towed a 24' 5000 lb TT, I was able to tow uphill with not to many problems (did push the RPM's and in 3rd gear a lot) and going down would gear down so i wasnt riding the break, I up graded to a F350 SWD with a 6.4l and a 28' ft 5ver at 11000 lbs, I now run up the hill only droping to 4th for some of the tighter steper corners (its a long drop to the ocean if you go over the edge) and let my exhaust break do most the work coming down. Its a lot nicer drive with the new setup and i cant imagine towing the new 5ver with the F150, i would have probably blowen the trany right out of it (as is i aready had to take it in twice for trany work) not to mention burning up the breaks on the way down (some of those step down hills have sharp corners at the bottom).
With the one ton if you end up getting 2footitus you wont have to go out upgrade the truck yet again.
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Old 03-21-2012, 04:32 PM   #28
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Just a FYI, 2011 & 12 Ford 350s are 3.73 on the diesel, 4.30 on gas.
Do not know on other makes.
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