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Old 01-27-2016, 01:04 PM   #1
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Thinking of going with an old F-450/550

I am still on the search for a truck that will handle a 20K lbs (when loaded) 5er toy hauler such as the Jayco seismic 4112. No matter what I end up with, I want to put a skirted flatbed on it. I have found many low mileage 99-03 model F-450 and F-550's with the 7.3 diesel that seem to be good deals at about 1/4 (or less) the price of a new F-450/550 or Ram 5500.
Other than no exhaust brake... is my reasoning sound here or am I totally overlooking something? I am more concerned about the capability and condition of the truck than the age.
A quick internet search brought up a few examples in my area...
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Old 01-27-2016, 09:40 PM   #2
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I still have a copy of the Ford 2002 RV and Trailer Towing Guide.

Only one version of the 2002 F-550 has a GVWR of 30,000 pounds and tow rating over 20,000 pounds: CrewCab 4x2 diesel with the optional and rare High Capacity Towing Package.

Did I mention rare? Yeah, they built a few, but very few. So spend some time looking for one and insist that is has the High Capacity Towing Package. If the seller cannot show you the window sticker, then get the VIN and take it to a Ford dealer's service department and ask them to print out a "build sheet". Most dealers will charge you for that build sheet, but it includes every standard and optional component that was installed at the assembly plant. If the build sheet does not show the High Capacity Towing package included on that truck, then it dies not have it. Max tow rating without the High Capacity Towing package is 17,500 on a CrewCab 4x2, or 17,100 on a 4x4.

Probably much easier to find the very special F-650 Super Crewzer, which has max GCWR of 43,000 pounds and max tow rating of 23,000 pounds. Ford built The SuperCrewzer around 2001/2004. It had a 300 HP Cat engine and tow body added by a quality upfitter. They had MSRP of over $60k

Here's a UTube video that shows one that was for sale back in 2011.
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Old 01-27-2016, 09:49 PM   #3
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Smokey, your knowledge of Ferds is outstanding...you must have some great data to pull from.
Joe
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Old 01-27-2016, 09:57 PM   #4
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I love the integrated engine/exhaust brake so much I cannot imagine towing my little 23 foot trailer without it, much less a much heavier fiver loaded up with my toys.

If you simply cannot afford to look for newer with some of the great safety features like integrated engine/exhaust brake, I understand. But ruling it out without trying it out might be crime in my rotten opinion!
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Old 01-27-2016, 10:08 PM   #5
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Smokey, your knowledge of Ferds is outstanding...you must have some great data to pull from.
Joe
Lots of experience as a Ford diesel "nut", and as a car nut since the early 1950s. I've been a moderator on TheDieselStop since 1999, collecting almost all the Ford RV and Trailer Towing Guides. My Ford dealer gave me his old copies of the Ford Truck Source Book for most of the years 1997 through 2010. I attended the 2001 Memorial Day rally at the KTP assembly plant, with side trips to the International Engine Plant in Indianapolis, and to the upfitter's plant where they converted the F-650 chassis cab into the Super CrewZer.

I enjoy helping others spec out a tow vehicle, so I spend a lot of my time doing that. I worked my butt off for over 30 years so when I retired I could afford to enjoy myself. So that's what I do - enjoy myself.
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Old 01-28-2016, 08:14 AM   #6
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Dont be concerned about the exhaust brake. BD makes an great product that fits right on the turbo.
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Old 01-28-2016, 08:26 AM   #7
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Thank you for that information everyone!
I'm wanting to stay with a pickup truck cab and a skirted flatbed. I am in no hurry to buy anything but am planning to fulltime in a toy hauler in the future.
I have been known to be frugal (wife calls it cheap). I may go modern but I just figured a nice old f-550 could do the job at a fraction of the price. It would have to be 2003 or older as I am avoiding the 6.0 liter engine.
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Old 01-28-2016, 08:31 AM   #8
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I still have a copy of the Ford 2002 RV and Trailer Towing Guide.

Only one version of the 2002 F-550 has a GVWR of 30,000 pounds and tow rating over 20,000 pounds: CrewCab 4x2 diesel with the optional and rare High Capacity Towing Package.
Any idea what made it "high capacity"? I wonder if the frame, axles and brakes are the same but maybe it just had a lower gear ratio?
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Old 01-28-2016, 11:02 AM   #9
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Any idea what made it "high capacity"? I wonder if the frame, axles and brakes are the same but maybe it just had a lower gear ratio?
Not a different axle ratio, but a different. stronger, rear axle/differential. Both the regular F-550 and the one with the High Capacity trailer towing pkg had 4.88 ring gear and pinion (axle ratio or gear ratio). The high capacity towing package also included wiring and relays and fuses for the 7-wire trailer plug and a trailer brake controller. No mention in the F-550 Order Guide of any other changes. The rear axle is the biggie.

Without the high capacity towing pkg, GCWR was only 26k and tow rating was less than 18k = not enough for your 20k trailer. Real world F-550s with tow body, tool box, 5er hitch, driver, one passenger, full of diesel, normal junk in the bed and back seat, etc., weighed almost 10,000 pounds without the trailer, So actual max trailer weight was about 16,000 pounds. The high capacity towing package added 4,000 pounds more GCWR, so a 20k trailer would be about the max you could tow without exceeding the pulling power of the F-550.
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Old 01-28-2016, 02:43 PM   #10
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...The high capacity towing package also included wiring and relays and fuses for the 7-wire trailer plug and a trailer brake controller. No mention in the F-550 Order Guide of any other changes. The rear axle is the biggie.
Hey Smokey, how's it going? Was just browsing the site and came across this post and seen your handle. Dang, I thought I got around ;-)

IIRC, the High Capacity Trailer Tow also included synthetic oil in the rear axle, which of course was a big deal back in the 2000-2003 days.
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Old 01-28-2016, 02:49 PM   #11
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Probably much easier to find the very special F-650 Super Crewzer, which has max GCWR of 43,000 pounds and max tow rating of 23,000 pounds. Ford built The SuperCrewzer around 2001/2004. It had a 300 HP Cat engine and tow body added by a quality upfitter. They had MSRP of over $60k
The F650 Super Crewzer was/is an awesome truck. MSRP was actually i the 90's and had the 12% FET on it due to coming with a "factory installed" 5th wheel hitch. I love mine and it towed my 47' Weekend Warrior Toyhauler very well. I recently purchased a Fleetwood Revolution LE and getting ready to sell it, maybe....


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Old 01-28-2016, 03:28 PM   #12
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Hey Smokey, how's it going? Was just browsing the site and came across this post and seen your handle. Dang, I thought I got around ;-)

IIRC, the High Capacity Trailer Tow also included synthetic oil in the rear axle, which of course was a big deal back in the 2000-2003 days.
What is this, old home week. Still have my 2001 white F-350 that Smokey talked me into buying and you had a great deal on it. Just last year got it over 100,000 miles. And would you know it the A/C has quite working. This thing has been like the energizer bunny.

Paul
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Old 01-28-2016, 03:36 PM   #13
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What is this, old home week. Still have my 2001 white F-350 that Smokey talked me into buying and you had a great deal on it. Just last year got it over 100,000 miles. And would you know it the A/C has quite working. This thing has been like the energizer bunny.

Paul
Hey Blue74, long time no talk.... I hope all has been well. Glad to hear you still have the 2001 F-350. Can't believe it's only got 100k on it...
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Old 01-28-2016, 08:29 PM   #14
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IIRC, the High Capacity Trailer Tow also included synthetic oil in the rear axle, which of course was a big deal back in the 2000-2003 days.
My '99.5 F-250 PSD had synthetic lube as factory fill. That was a Ford "Sterling" 10.5" axle. So synthetic diff lube wasn't a big deal in the smaller PSDs. But the Dana Spicer-135 axle in the F-550 was another matter.


Are you still Fleet Manager at that big Ford store in Fontana, CA?
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