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Old 09-03-2013, 09:04 AM   #29
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4 wheel drive only if you need it. Otherwise, it cost more to buy, maintain and operate. Been towing RVs since 1984 and have never needed it.
Ken
At school (many moons ago) a guy from Alaska and asked me why everyone had four-wheel drives in California! He said they didn't use it at home. I thought it was funny.
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Old 09-03-2013, 08:04 PM   #30
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At school (many moons ago) a guy from Alaska and asked me why everyone had four-wheel drives in California! He said they didn't use it at home.
I lived in Omaha for 6 years and Denver for 20 years, and never had a 4x4. If you think you don't have 4-foot snow drifts in Omaha, you haven't lived there very long. I took the kids skiing in the Rockies almost every weekend during the winters of 1977-1985, in a rear-wheel-drive 4x2 Econoline van, and always made it up the mountain and back down again. Of course, it helps if you have the right tires and know how to drive. Very few people do, so they need 4x4 to make up for their lack of driving skills.

My BIL lived in Denver too, and was raised in South Dakota. He could drive his huge 1970s rear wheel drive Dodge sedan places during and after a blizzard that most folks couldn't go in a Jeep. But he knew how to drive.

I know how to drive without 4x4, but I'd rather not have to put up with the inconvenience of snow and ice. So as an old retired guy, I sold my Toro snow blower and moved to the desert where an inch of snow is a rarity. And mud? What's that?

One of my favorite snow&ice-country cars was a 1978 front-wheel-drive Audi 5000S diesel with good studded snow/ice radials. If you were smart enough to not get high-centered, it was unstoppable. Very heavy on the front end, plenty of power from the heavy diesel engine, good tires, and it was almost a snowplow.

Jump forward over 30 years, and my 2012 4x2 pickup has an electronic locking rear axle. Much better than the Posi-Traction and limited slip axles of the past. Lock the rear axle and it will go places my previous F-250 diesel with limited slip was reluctant to go.
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Old 09-03-2013, 08:37 PM   #31
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[QUOTE=SmokeyWren;1712896]I lived in Omaha for 6 years and Denver for 20 years, and never had a 4x4. If you think you don't have 4-foot snow drifts in Omaha, you haven't lived there very long. I took the kids skiing in the Rockies almost every weekend during the winters of 1977-1985, in a rear-wheel-drive 4x2 Econoline van, and always made it up the mountain and back down again. Of course, it helps if you have the right tires and know how to drive. Very few people do, so they need 4x4 to make up for their lack of driving skills.



QUOTE]

When I started to drive my father had an 84 Econoline van. My sister an I learned to drive on that van. What I told my father many years later that in the winter I would do parking lot donuts with it in the snow. Once she started swinging, it did not want to stop. A lot of fun.
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Old 09-03-2013, 08:44 PM   #32
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4 wheel drive only if you need it. Otherwise, it cost more to buy, maintain and operate. Been towing RVs since 1984 and have never needed it.

Ken
Owned five 4x4 since 86 and never spend any on front end repairs and used the features often. Had pushed on to many cars before now carry a tow sling.
I am parked in a field for a baloon festival and had to lock my hubs to be able to move in the wet grass. Use it all the time when wife backs unit up on the leveling blocks when on grass.
Much more practical to me then hi maintenance hydraulic leveling system on a trailer.
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:44 PM   #33
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I grew up in Idaho and lived several years in E. Wa. and many years in W.Wa. When W. Wa. has snow, 4X4 is needed more than any where else I have lived. The reason is when we have snow, most of the time the temp. is at or just above 32* which makes the worst driving conditions. I have known people that lived most of their life in snow country and got into snow here and couldn't believe how much trouble they had.
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:13 AM   #34
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Thank you for your note and advice. After doing a great deal of comparative work it sure appears an F350 DRW diesel is the answer. We really would like a 4X4 as we intend to travel to some out of the way places. Late model used, in excellent conditon is fine. Do you have any suggestions? BTW my personal email is chuckhm3@gmail.com. Thank yo for your help. Chuck
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:27 PM   #35
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Ken,
Your comments are very helpful. Making the right decision the first time is vital. So that said we will go with a DRW and look first at the F350's, diesel. The shorter bed is easier for the wife and around town. The 4X4 was planned for an added margin of safety as we intend to be in Alaska and on the east Newfoundland, so we will be in some out of the way places. The added truck height may present a trailer height problem Any comment? What has been your experience with 4X4 vs. single axle drive?
Chuck
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:43 PM   #36
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We are proceeding as you outlined. We have the 5W and are now seeking the right truck. Given a great deal of interesting and welcome input it looks like we need a F350 or equivalent, DRW, diesel. In Question is a 4X4 the right way to to and a long box vs. the shorter box. I error on the side of conversative and will have equipment that can easily handle the task. No marginal gear! We will use the RV from Florida, where we are currently to Alaska and east to Newfoundland. So we will be in some compromising places off the beaten path out of the way and not relying on nicely maintained RV parks. I moved to FL from AK and have been back several times and driven the Alkan highway although that drive was in the early 70's. The RV is a Lifestyle and it was selected in part by the bouble box frame construction. It is physically heaver that typical 5W's that size, 38' 5". I have been all over the calculator, manufacturers brochures and web sites. I am on information overload and that is OK. Anything you would like to offer is greatly appreciated.
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:48 PM   #37
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We are first timers. Years ago major truck experience, but a long tome back. Heavy duty is better than marginal and we do not want a problem in an out of the way place. That said I do not want to totally overdue the equipment, only know that the selection is adequate and safe for the intended job. An F350 DRW Diesel or equivalent seems to be the target. Questions now, is a 4X4 really needed and a short bed vs. long bed. Your further input is welcome.
Chuck
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Old 09-06-2013, 01:02 PM   #38
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If you want a new Ford dually, it's going to have an 8' bed.

Ford no longer offers a dually shorty. They offered one with 6.5' bed for several years, until 2008 model year. But they were not in high demand therefore dealers did not stock them. So they were special order only, and not many were ordered. So trying to find a used one would be like looking for a needle in a haystack.

A shorty bed requires a slider hitch, and the good automatic sliders are expensive. So go with the 8' bed and a regular hitch.
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Old 09-06-2013, 03:06 PM   #39
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A 4X4 Long box is the way to go. My previous TV was an F350 SRW 4X4 short box with a Pullrite Superglide slider hitch. Never had any troubles with the hitch, and really liked the fully automatic operation that required no action on my part. If it was needed, it was already doing it's job. Downside was cost - $2800 installed with the under bed mounting brackets, and frequent cleaning and lubrication required to keep everything working. If you must get a SB, I strongly recommend the Superglide hitch.

New TV is a Ram 3500 DRW, 4X4, Max Tow, long bed. I think the long bed is much better than the short for several reasons. No slider hitch required, more room for things in the bed while towing because the hitch doesn't move, better ride due to longer wheel base. As far as easier to drive, I find the biggest difference between these 2 trucks is the width of the back fenders. I have gone though drive thrus, but it is very tight. Note that I bought a Pullrite Super 5th hitch for this truck because I was very impressed with the latching mechanism for the 5th wheel pin. This was not the cheapest hitch available.

As far as 4X4 vs 4x2, if you have it and don't need it, you're lucky. If you don't have it and need it, you're SOL. Cost to buy is recovered at resale, you're going to get crappy fuel mileage anyway, and you may use the truck for other things.
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Old 09-06-2013, 03:23 PM   #40
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We are first timers. Years ago major truck experience, but a long tome back. Heavy duty is better than marginal and we do not want a problem in an out of the way place. That said I do not want to totally overdue the equipment, only know that the selection is adequate and safe for the intended job. An F350 DRW Diesel or equivalent seems to be the target. Questions now, is a 4X4 really needed and a short bed vs. long bed. Your further input is welcome.
Chuck
Also want to have a fairly steep rear axle ratio. IMHO, at least 3:73; 4:10 or 4:30 (F-450) would be better.
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Old 09-06-2013, 04:11 PM   #41
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Also want to have a fairly steep rear axle ratio. IMHO, at least 3:73; 4:10 or 4:30 (F-450) would be better.
X2 I would go with 4:10 for Cummins or 4:30 for Ford. I had an 01 Dodge with 3:54 and an 01 Dodge with 4:10. The fuel MPG was only about 1/2 MPG difference and the 4:10 pulls SO much better. I would vote for the 450 also.
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Old 09-07-2013, 03:35 AM   #42
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I have been studying the different Ford diesel engines for fun, and have to say if you are buying used, avoid ANY 6.0 liter diesel trucks. They all have serious problems.

Ford Forums is THE place to look and learn about used trucks. This is the forum for 350s and 450s
Super Duty & Heavy Duty - Ford Truck Enthusiasts Forums
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