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Old 04-09-2013, 07:59 AM   #1
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Truck advice and ideas.

My wife and I are going to buy a used truck. We then will consider getting a TT or 5th wheel in the 30' - 32' range. What would you recommend for truck size and bed size? It seems that the 4 most popular are the Ram, the F 150's and 250's and the Silverado.
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Old 04-09-2013, 08:17 AM   #2
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With a load of that size, you will need at least a 3/4, if not a 1 ton. You would probably do best with a diesel, especially if you expect to do any mountain driving. The ideal truck will have a Ford interior, a Dodge Cummins engine, and a Chevy Allison transmission. Unfortunately, I couldn't find one like that.

The Dodge transmissions are notoriously unreliable, and the Duramax engine in the Chevy is almost as good as the Cummins. The Ford diesel engines from 2000 to 2007 were also unreliable. Read the article at 10 Best Used Diesel Trucks (and cars) - Diesel Power Magazine
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Old 04-09-2013, 08:18 AM   #3
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Maybe you should find the 'right trailer' first, so you will know how much truck you would need. Too many have gotten the truck first, then find it isn't big enough for the trailer they end up with.
And are you looking at new or used?
Joe
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Old 04-09-2013, 08:29 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J Birder View Post
The Dodge transmissions are notoriously unreliable, and the Duramax engine in the Chevy is almost as good as the Cummins. The Ford diesel engines from 2000 to 2007 were also unreliable. Read the article at 10 Best Used Diesel Trucks (and cars) - Diesel Power Magazine
That is NOT the case with the introduction of the 6.7L Cummins and the 68RFE 6-speed automatic transmission, a totally different transmission than the 727 Torqueflite-based 47 and 48REs. The 68RFE is based on a Mercedes truck automatic whose design for the Cummins application started during the DaimlerChrysler days.

Your reference is to the 47RE and 48RE 4-speed automatics used behind the 5.9L Cummins up to January 1, 2007, and even then, the 48REs were significantly better than the 47REs.

The 68RFE 6-speed has been an excellent transmission as has the Aisin 6-speed used in the Ram C&C trucks - the Aisin is used in this application to provide the PTO capabilities needed in C&C service such as wreckers.

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Old 04-09-2013, 12:45 PM   #5
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In 2011 all the heavy duty trucks were improved. Ford's new diesel engine. Chevy's reworked Duramax engine plus a greatly improved frame. And Ram's new interior with the proven Cummins diesel engine.

But buy the trailer or 5th wheel 1st. Then buy the truck to tow it.
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Old 04-09-2013, 02:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OswegoLion View Post
My wife and I are going to buy a used truck. We then will consider getting a TT or 5th wheel in the 30' - 32' range. What would you recommend for truck size and bed size?
As others suggested, decide on the trailer first. A 30' ultra-lite TT requires a heavier duty truck than a 32' full-timer's fifth wheel because of the difference in hitch weight. A very few and very special half-ton Fords can tow a 30' ultra-lite TT without being overloaded, and none can tow a 32' full-timer fifth wheel without being overloaded.

So count on getting at least a 250/2500, and even better would be a 350/3500 with single rear wheels (SRW).

Bed size doesn't matter for towing a TT. For a 5er, either 6.5' or 8' long bed will work if you buy the right 5er itch. For an 8' long bed, almost any 5er hitch will work. But for a shorty with 6.5' bed, you need a slider hitch, and preferably an automagic slider hitch such as this PullRite SuperGlide.
Pullrite 16K SuperGlide 5th Wheel Hitch PR-4100

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It seems that the 4 most popular are the Ram, the F 150's and 250's and the Silverado.
For a new 250/350 Ford or 2500/3500 Dodge or GM pickup, brand doesn't really matter if you choose the right options to be certain your tow vehicle is not overloaded when towing your wet and loaded trailer. But for a used pickup, you must spend a bunch of time finding out which ones are trouble prone and which are not. If you go back to 1999, Ford 7.3L diesel was outstanding, GM had an awful diesel engine my dealer wouldn't even stock, and Dodge had a great engine but the rest of the truck was under par. Move up a few years to the 2005 model, and Ford had increased towing and payload capability significantly, but their 6.0L diesel engine was trouble prone, GM's new diesel engine was good, and Dodge's were still outstanding diesel engines but so-so pickups.
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Old 04-09-2013, 02:34 PM   #7
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Move up a few years to the 2005 model, and Ford had increased towing and payload capability significantly, but their 6.0L diesel engine was trouble prone, GM's new diesel engine was good, and Dodge's were still outstanding diesel engines but so-so pickups.
Ummm.....you might want to Google the 2004 and 2005 Duramax LLY engines.

I really hate to see this thread degenerate into a brand war, especially since brand wars are not permitted on iRV2, but that seems to be the turn it's taking.....

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Old 04-09-2013, 04:41 PM   #8
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I don't see any brand war going on here at all. All three brands have had some good years and some not so good years. Most of the comments here seem pretty honestly brand neutral.

Joel
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Old 04-09-2013, 05:30 PM   #9
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Here's the specific rule as found in the iRV2 Community Rules:

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Do not start or participate in brand wars, i.e. my XXX brand is better than your XXXX brand.
I hope it doesn't get that far.

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Old 04-13-2013, 06:37 AM   #10
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I have owned products from the big 3 and have had the best with Fords. I realize everyone has their own flavor but just did not have good luck or customer care with any GM product I owned to the point I will never own another one if you gave it to me free.

Now I am not a diesel mechanic but I did buy my F350 from a Diesel Mechanic who works for Werner and has extensive knowledge on diesels. Another good friend of mine owns his own shop in ranch country in SDakota, he is a diesel mechanic also. He would own nothing but Fords and also has a 5ver he pulls as well.

A friend of mine at work has a new Dodge Diesel and I am very impressed with his rig. As I mentioned to someone else, check and see what is sitting in CG's and chat with some of the owners. For me my flavor is FORD
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