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Old 09-09-2019, 08:26 PM   #1
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Newbie truck recommendations

Hello all. I am a prospective new full time RVer. I looked into tiny home living a couple years ago but it wasn't the right time or place here at Eglin AFB FL. I am getting out of the military come Jan and am looking into the RV life.


There is still much to consider and research indeed but for right now I am just looking for recommendations on trucks to pull fifth wheelers. If I get an RV it's going to be a 40ft.


I am also a truck newbie so I barely know what I'm looking for. I know I want a long bed AWD and for the size and weight of the RV probably dual wheels. But I am open to all advice. I beg thee for it!


What engines are best? (Assume a unparalleled ignorance regarding mechanics on my part) Perhaps just what years of what make and model are best? And so on...
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Old 09-09-2019, 09:30 PM   #2
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40 feet long? Yea, you want a DRW, crew cab, long bed, diesel truck. I have an F350 with Ford's 6.7L. It's been great and has towed about 8,000 miles since June. I've gone from southern Texas, to Maine, over to South Dakota, down to the Carolinas, and a few places between. You should also consider the F450/4500 level trucks. I know with the Fords, you get a better turning radius than the 350s. I don't know if that's the case with Chevy and Dodge, but probably is. If you go with Ford, try to get a 2015 or newer. They changed the turbo to an older, but better design. It burns a little more fuel, but is a better set up.
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Old 09-10-2019, 06:13 AM   #3
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Here we go again....
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Old 09-10-2019, 08:00 AM   #4
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Dually class three or four truck. Diesel.
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Old 09-10-2019, 08:30 AM   #5
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Dually class three or four truck. Diesel.
I have those basic details down. I need more detailed advice of what are the most reliable trucks. If I'm going to buy something I want it to last. I'd say reliability is my biggest concern. Also what if I got like a 42' Sandpiper? What could handle that without a doubt in the world?
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Old 09-10-2019, 08:34 AM   #6
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X2 on the recommendation above, Dually Diesel. If I could afford to to it again Id get a F450 vice my F350. For me, that decision is based solely on the turning radius.
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Old 09-10-2019, 09:36 AM   #7
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Honestly, they all have some issues, most of them are emissions related with the diesels made after 07.5. My take on it is go sit in all 3 and see which one your butt likes the best. Ive had good luck with fords and gm products but the dodges ive had have been garbage. The dodges on here seem to have a cult following. Id say the safest are ford or a gm product.
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Old 09-10-2019, 11:51 AM   #8
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What's your budget, new can be 6 figures or used 30-50k$ should get a nice one if you stay away from '04-10 PS Fords but they all have issues just do a search on Bosch CP4 HPFP to read a few. GM went to Denso FI in '17 now is in Class action suit for '11-16 failures whictvh can cost up to 12k$ to fix when powdered aluminum from fuel pump contamination. Ford and Ram still using Bosch. Chose wisely my friend. Thanks for your service to our Great Country.
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Old 09-10-2019, 12:20 PM   #9
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What's your budget, new can be 6 figures or used 30-50k$ should get a nice one if you stay away from '04-10 PS Fords but they all have issues just do a search on Bosch CP4 HPFP to read a few. GM went to Denso FI in '17 now is in Class action suit for '11-16 failures whictvh can cost up to 12k$ to fix when powdered aluminum from fuel pump contamination. Ford and Ram still using Bosch. Chose wisely my friend. Thanks for your service to our Great Country.
The funny thing is, there are probably more 03-10 fords running around than every other year of every other make combined even nearly 10 years later.
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Old 09-10-2019, 12:22 PM   #10
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IMHO, AWD is not worth the cost for the FEW TIMES you might use it. You lose about 1-3 MPG. Also, not a fan of diesel engines. The initial cost is very hard to re-coop unless you are putting about 50K/year on the truck. The biggest gas motor you can get, at least a 6 speed transmission and a 3.73 - 4.10 rear axle and you should be good.

I don't know if it is an option on F250/F350, but on the F150 you can get an electronic locking differential. This a much better option than "posi-trac" or other locking differentials.
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Old 09-10-2019, 12:33 PM   #11
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IMHO, AWD is not worth the cost for the FEW TIMES you might use it. You lose about 1-3 MPG. Also, not a fan of diesel engines. The initial cost is very hard to re-coop unless you are putting about 50K/year on the truck. The biggest gas motor you can get, at least a 6 speed transmission and a 3.73 - 4.10 rear axle and you should be good.

I don't know if it is an option on F250/F350, but on the F150 you can get an electronic locking differential. This a much better option than "posi-trac" or other locking differentials.
The locking dif i know for sure is available on fords 4x4 models. I dont know for sure on the 2wd.

As far as 4x4, pay for a tow a couple times because you got stuck and you couldve got the 4x4.

Diesel, itll take you a long time to make up for the cost in fuel but you get way more on trade or resale and a gasser just plain and simple does not pull as well as any diesel in the last 20yrs.
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Old 09-10-2019, 02:07 PM   #12
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So it looks like those sandpipers are about 15K pounds. A gas dually F350(just for reference) is rated for 23,500 pounds with the 4.3 gears.

I retract my last statement that a diesel is needed. A gas truck would be more economical and easier to maintain IMO. If you don't like the prevailing winds dictating your highway speed day to day a diesel engine might be desired.


As far as which of the big three makes the best truck? You're not going to get a straight unbiased review about that. Pick which one you like best.
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Old 09-10-2019, 03:21 PM   #13
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Ok, here goes.

In the 250/350 2500/3500 trucks there is no such thing as AWD. In Ford trucks you can get a 2WD with a locking read diff. In Ford trucks you can get a 4 x 4 or also get an FX-4 option which gives you 4x4 with a locking rear diff. That is the best you can do in a Ford.

Trucks made a big leap in refinement and capability in 2011. Then again in 2017 for Ford. By 2017 Ford and Ram were a bit ahead of GM.

For 42' 5th wheel I think you need a Dually. Ford, Ram or GM will do. They all have the same problem as all diesel engines. That is the emissions. The system in place to meet the EPA requirements is kinda complex.

It is not easy picking a truck. You have Ram lovers, Ford lovers and GM lovers. My trucks in the last 14 years have been a 2006 Honda Ridgeline, a 2011 F-150, a 2012 F-450, and now a 2017 F-250. I liked all these trucks with zero problems with any of them. None of them had many miles on them.
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Old 09-10-2019, 03:52 PM   #14
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Daully diesel

Go with a daully F350 / 3500. The pin weight will be close if not over loading a srw. Probably 2500 to 3000lbs. You will need a diesel. A gas will move it but you will be very unhappy on the first hill. Go with a 4x4. Only had to use mine 2 or 3 times moving my 5th wheel. Which one to buy? Any of the big three are great. Depends on what you like. Just keep good fuel in it and do the maintenance. I have a 2006 Dodge ram 3500 mega cab 4x4 srw diesel. Thought it was all the truck needed. Bought a 41 ft fifth wheel. 13000 lbs. 2500lbs of pin weight. Moved to a 2017 F350 CC 4x4 diesel daully. Best move I made. Has all the power you need and the exhaust brake makes towing easy. I have not had any issues with either truck. New diesel emmisons are worrisome but with a fifth wheel that big a diesel is the only way to go. I only fuel mine a truck stops.
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