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Old 06-18-2021, 05:59 AM   #1
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RAM 2500 Gas or Diesel? Payload

I know, this is the bejillionth time this one has been posted. Iím racking my brain in what truck to get. My preference is gas, but it seems everything in inventory is diesel. From what I can tell custom orders are 4-6 months right now.

Iíd like to focus on one issue of the gas vs diesel argument; payload. Everything else aside, payloads for a similarly equipped gas truck are almost 1000 pounds greater than a diesel. That seems pretty important to me. My present trailer is tiny and Iím currently pulling it with an SUV. But I want to try to cover all my bases with this truck and would like something that would haul an under 30í trailer or possibly a small/midsize 5th wheel in the future. I donít think I want to go up to a 3500 as I really canít see getting a monster 5th wheel.

Looking for opinions. I hear they are free here.

Also, check out this YouTube review. This guy has a lot of good info on RAMS. If you start getting bored, go to the last half where he calculates towing capacity. I think itís really informative. https://youtu.be/so6HdPv9K3s
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Old 06-18-2021, 06:17 AM   #2
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What's the big deal about going straight to a 1 ton and skip the 3/4 tons? Sizing is about the same, pricing is super close but capability is much better in most cases. On GM there's no real difference in comfort or suspension feel in an unladen 3/4 or 1 ton.
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Old 06-18-2021, 07:46 AM   #3
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A Ram 3500 SRW truck can not tow a monster 5th wheel. To tow a monster 5th wheel you need a Ram, Ford, GM 350/3500 Dually.

From what I read the old 6.4 hemi with the 6 speed was not so good. The gears were spaced too far apart. But now the new 8 speed is much better.

The reason the payload is less on a diesel truck is because all the emission stuff and engine are heavier. The old cummins engine weighed 1,300lbs. I do not know what the new engine weighs since in 2019 they have added graphite to the engine block. Before you buy look at the exhaust of a diesel truck. To control the NOx and soot I bet the exhaust system weighs 300 - 350 lbs. more lbs. than on a gasoline truck.

If I wanted to tow a small 5th wheel with a gas truck I would pick the 2500HD GM 6.6 litre with a higher GVWR. I forget but it can be 10,800lbs or even 11,200lbs. A GM 2500 HD 6.6 litre gas truck will have 3,600lb payload.

Ford has their new 7.3 Godzilla engine coupled with a 10 speed transmission would also be a consideration.

I believe both the GM and Ford gas truck would be just as good as the old Ram 6.4 hemi or probably better.

Don't forget to look for a truck with the 5th wheel prep package.
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Old 06-18-2021, 09:30 AM   #4
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Gas or Diesel depends on many different factors. How far, and how often you tow. How is the truck used when not towing. Where are you towing , mountains versus more flat terrain.

I will say the Ram 2500, with the 6.4 and rear air suspension is a nice riding, and handling truck. With the diesel you definitely feel the weight up front.

If I was to move up to a HD truck it would be the diesel, just because my power to weight ratio would actually decrease with the 6.4 from my current 1500 with the 5.7.

The HD truck market has really been in short supply this past year. Dealers canít keep them on the lots. Personally I donít understand why they are so popular, why have such a utilitarian vehicle for just the occasional towing of a camp trailer, that otherwise is not needed. My guess is sometime in the next year or two, the used HD truck market will be full. We all know where gas prices are going, and a HD gas truck market will be much worse off.
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Old 06-18-2021, 10:04 AM   #5
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I agree skip the 3/4 ton and go right to a 1 ton. The 3/4 tons light payload stop you from towing most fifth wheels. Go diesel. It will make your rowing experience allot more comfortable. It will be able to maintain speed on hill, give you passing power without shifting allot of gears and have the engine screaming and the exhaust brake make going down hills allot easier. Towing with a gas truck is a work out. I just did a 1000 mile round trip with my 17 F350 towing my 41 foot 13300 lb fifth wheel. We did 466 miles straight through on Sunday. Had the cruise control set on 70 MPH. It maintained speed and we only had 1 fuel stop. We were not worn out when we got home. Fuel stops are also a consideration. Getting gas at a regular gas station can be challenging. I only go to truck stops and use the truck pumps. You can never have too much truch
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Old 06-18-2021, 12:51 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Dieselguy4 View Post
I agree skip the 3/4 ton and go right to a 1 ton. The 3/4 tons light payload stop you from towing most fifth wheels. Go diesel. It will make your rowing experience allot more comfortable. It will be able to maintain speed on hill, give you passing power without shifting allot of gears and have the engine screaming and the exhaust brake make going down hills allot easier.
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Fuel stops are also a consideration. Getting gas at a regular gas station can be challenging. I only go to truck stops and use the truck pumps. You can never have too much truch
Agreed on the fuel stops for sure. you only have to be careful at the truck stops because these are very powerful pumps and will fill your LT tank before your wife can even find the rest rooms. The automatic shut-off mechanism might be way too sensitive as well, and with the pump volume you'll also generate a lot of foam. The answer is to fill the last part of the tank with the pump handle 'less than wide open'. Try not to linger at the pump very long either, so as to frustrate the class 8 rig behind you.

as for too much truck; within practical limits given real people's pocket books and the trucks available on the market today, towing mainstream RVs -- yes. Back when light trucks were not keeping pace with 5ver weights you had folks buying 14,000 lb. (curb weight) freightliners to pull 16,000 lb RVs. way overkill but go team go if that floats your boat. and just to poke a little more fun -- if you were to pull a pop-up tent trailer behind such a truck, that would surely be "too much truck". the reason is that the more truck you have the less sensitive you are to what the trailer is doing -- if you were to loose your trailer you would want to know about it :-)

anecdotally this is true -- years ago I read of a dude to did just that -- towed a pop-up tent trailer behind something big (don't recall what). he actually did loose the pop-up and didn't feel a thing. Didn't know about it until miles down the road -- you'd think mirrors would be useful in that situation :-)

I find it interesting that my trailer is 1.6 times heaver than the 3500 SRW I pull it with -- and I'm still 1,500 lbs short of my GCWR. the rig stops beautifully and I LIKE feeling the trailer behind me because I want all the clues I can get that tell me how things are doing.
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Old 06-18-2021, 01:01 PM   #7
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Current 250/2500 trucks can safely/adequately tow 14K 5th wheels

It's all about the Trucks RAWR

GAS trucks will have more 'payload' but use the same Rear Axle as Diesel


Fueling....
For 7 yrs traveling weekly Long Bed Quad towing 34' 5th wheel fueled up at every conceivable service station as we ONLY traveled secondary/back roads ---small town USA
Had to back out of couple of stations ...so what
Find more CG entrances/interior roads tougher then then fueling up


Side note:
My 2007 3500 ratings are less then todays 250/2500 and we safely/reliably/excellently ---no white knuckle events etc our Home for 7yrs FT and still tow it
14K GVWR 34' 5th wheel

No...1 tons are NOT actually needed these days as was the case but in the day.
1 tons probably do have larger capacity fuel tanks...maybe
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Old 06-18-2021, 02:35 PM   #8
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Some people need to practice their driving and fueling skills. I've said it before, no real issues for me yet, even downtown.

Those stressing out about taking too much time fueling and bugging trcukers need to check out how long it takes them to fuel a big rig. When/if i ever get a diesel and end up in a truck lane I'll take the time I need, just as everyone else does. Life is too short to stress out so much.
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Old 06-18-2021, 02:59 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old-Biscuit View Post
Current 250/2500 trucks can safely/adequately tow 14K 5th wheels

It's all about the Trucks RAWR

GAS trucks will have more 'payload' but use the same Rear Axle as Diesel
I view this as a GVWR problem and not a GAWR problem. That diesel engine up front is the root cause of the "payload limitation" because it is contributing to the truck's overall curb weight without (very much) loading the rear axle. Yea the tranny that has to be bolted up to that engine is behind the front axle, so in that respect some of the weight associated with that diesel engine is felt by the rear axle. but not in large part. So diesel or no diesel the rear axle is still loaded approximately the same. ergo -- you could be right about RAWR for the gasser but for the diesel its about GWVR, i.e. loading the rear axle to its limits would likely exceed GVWR for the diesel.

Ergo, I would respectfully point out that its really about both -- both the axle rating and the GVWR must be met in order for the manufacturer to meet NHTSA safety standards, and for the truck itself to meet J2807 performance standards which include an emergency stop while staying within a 11.5 foot lane, loaded to maximum GVWR with trailer in tow.

So if you tell me that loading the rear axle on a 3/4-ton gasser will exceed the rear axle rating before it will exceed GVWR I wouldn't quarrel, as I haven't weighed one and it sounds reasonable to me.

Moreover, looking at the numbers again, a 10,800 GVWR gas F250 (is there such a thing?) would theoretically handle the pin weight of a 14K 5ver depending on how its loaded. With 2,800 lbs (20%) on the pin (a conservative guess... its probably more than that), and 500 conservative pounds for 200 lbs of fuel and two passengers of 150 lbs each, the curb weight of that truck can 't be any higher than 7,500 lbs. No can do with a Cummins diesel (engine is too heavy), but Fords are lighter in curb weight to begin with, and so with a gas engine I suspect this hypothetical F250 would come in close to, if not below, 7,500 lbs curb weight. Anyone know?

I agree re: modern trucks ratings: It is astonishing to see the GVWR etc. ratings of late model trucks. Today, the 1-ton SRWs are 12,300 and 12,400! To me that is why "post 2013" the mental gymnastics required to operate a 3/4-ton truck over it's plated GVWR is pretty high -- the number of trucks for which you can say "the 3/4 ton is the same truck as the 1-ton except for a helper spring" is getting smaller. (in 2004, when I ditched my 3/4-ton Cummins for a 1-ton Cummins, the only difference was the decal on the outside, the GVWR plate on the driver' door panel, and the rear spring).
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Old 06-18-2021, 03:03 PM   #10
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Some people need to practice their driving and fueling skills. I've said it before, no real issues for me yet, even downtown.

Those stressing out about taking too much time fueling and bugging trcukers need to check out how long it takes them to fuel a big rig. When/if i ever get a diesel and end up in a truck lane I'll take the time I need, just as everyone else does. Life is too short to stress out so much.
no quarrel here; its just the respectful polite thing to do, as the trucker is making his livelihood. I also try not to hog the diesel pump on the passenger vehicle side of the lot as well , just to to respectful of others.

practice - for sure! first thing I did with my 5ver -- even before going home after taking delivery -- was to hit a local deserted parking lot.
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Old 06-18-2021, 03:34 PM   #11
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No one is saying to go have lunch or start shopping at Loves while leaving the nozzle in the truck. I'm not stressed about taking 10 minutes to fuel both my tanks though. I've been honked at, flipped the bird and more. They can kiss my grits. I am pumping 200-280l of fuel and paying for it. It is what it is.
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Old 06-18-2021, 03:53 PM   #12
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No different than filling at a gas station that has a small nozzle diesel pump and me with an emply fuel tank. It takes 10 minutes to pump 35 gallons thru the small nozzle I bet. A car behind me waiting to use the gas side of the pump just has to wait.
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Old 06-18-2021, 04:11 PM   #13
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yup. I think we're experiencing general agreement here :-) . filing up is filling up! its less than 10 min for me at the local "small pump" stations -- but I will also note that there is great variability from pump to pump. some really DO take 10 minutes if they are adjusted for lower flow. I avoid those! lol
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Old 06-18-2021, 10:43 PM   #14
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Lol. How did my post about payload turn into a “it’s hard to get gas” thread?

Love you guys!
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