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Old 02-12-2020, 01:11 PM   #1
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Used Dually Questions

So we are looking at buying an older (pre-2008) dually to tie our new fifth wheel. I have looked online extensively for towing and payload numbers.

Our Fifth Wheel:
2020 Palomino Columbus 378MB
13600 lbs. unloaded weight
16,300 lbs. total loaded weight
2200 lbs. unloaded hitch weight (I think that is low and am estimating 3400-3600 lbs. pin weight)

Trucks we are looking at:
1. 2006-2007 GM 3500 DRW (extended and crew cab)
2. 2003-2007 Ram 3500 DRW (crew cab)

How do I truly find accurate payload and tow ratings for individual trucks we are looking at? Would this trucks handle our fifth wheel?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-12-2020, 02:43 PM   #2
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Don’t know about GM, but the 2003 to 2007 Rams have a GVWR of 12,200# or 12,300#, payload of about 4,000#. They have about a 9,500# rear GAWR.
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Old 02-12-2020, 03:23 PM   #3
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You do realize that in 2011 all trucks were improved. If you saw the difference in the frame between 2010 and 2011 GM trucks you would see the huge improvement.

I can see the desire for those pre DEF trucks. The 2011 and 2012 Ram do not use DEF yet. I helped my friend drive his 2011 Ram Dually 1,100 miles round trip which I drove about half that distance. 550 miles solo and 550 miles towing a 40' empty 4 horse trailer with living quarters.

I liked his truck
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Old 02-12-2020, 04:31 PM   #4
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Why so old a Ram? The 2007 1/2 Cummins 6.7L motor is a beast. We bought an early 6.7L and after a couple of software updates it was flawless. Add in the factory exhaust brake and the wonderful 68RFE automatic made for a great towing rig. With your precieved weight I would look for one with the 4.10 rear end ratio. We could set the cruise and go all day with no issues.
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Old 02-12-2020, 05:02 PM   #5
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If they are there, the stickers on the door frame will tell you exactly the weights for the actual trucks you may consider.
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Old 02-12-2020, 05:58 PM   #6
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Either of those trucks should handle the payload you're thinking about. Why pre-2008? Just for the lack of emissions equipment? I happen to know that emissions equipment is still fairly easy to remove up to about 2016 model years. My 2014 F350 dually was pretty simple to take care of. It also wasn't terribly expensive. $500 can take care of it if you're a DIY kind of guy.


If you're looking at pre-2008 because they are cheap, then ignore what I said earlier as it doesn't matter.
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Old 02-12-2020, 05:59 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by tuffr2 View Post
You do realize that in 2011 all trucks were improved. If you saw the difference in the frame between 2010 and 2011 GM trucks you would see the huge improvement.

I can see the desire for those pre DEF trucks. The 2011 and 2012 Ram do not use DEF yet. I helped my friend drive his 2011 Ram Dually 1,100 miles round trip which I drove about half that distance. 550 miles solo and 550 miles towing a 40' empty 4 horse trailer with living quarters.

I liked his truck
Ram made the big payload jump in 2013 for 3500ís and 2014 for 2500ís!
The 3500 DRW went from 12,300# GVWR to 14,000# GVWR, the SRW went to 12,300# GVWR LB and 11,700# SB.
GM max on DRW was 13,025# up until 2020.
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Old 02-12-2020, 06:05 PM   #8
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If they are there, the stickers on the door frame will tell you exactly the weights for the actual trucks you may consider.
Well the stickers didnít come along until about 2006, and can be less than accurate on a used truck. Payload stickers loose accuracy with additional equipment added after it leaves the new dealers lot.
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Old 02-12-2020, 07:05 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Itchytoe View Post
Either of those trucks should handle the payload you're thinking about. Why pre-2008? Just for the lack of emissions equipment? I happen to know that emissions equipment is still fairly easy to remove up to about 2016 model years. My 2014 F350 dually was pretty simple to take care of. It also wasn't terribly expensive. $500 can take care of it if you're a DIY kind of guy.


If you're looking at pre-2008 because they are cheap, then ignore what I said earlier as it doesn't matter.


TBH, it was multiple factors. I really like the 5.9 in the Dodge that went away in 2007.5, but also know that they had issues with the front end. All the research Iíve done has the 2006-2007 GMs as one of the best Duramaxís made to date. Iíd definitely have to go 2011 or newer in the Ford. Not trying to mess with either of those Navistar motors.

We are at a crossroads. Part of us wants to buy something in the $25K range and keep our current daily drivers. The other part of us wants to go much newer and make the dually a daily driver.

So whatís our dilemma? Iím still Active Duty military and donít know where theyíll send us next. Driving a dually around the DC area would be absolute hell.
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Old 02-12-2020, 07:08 PM   #10
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My 2004.5 Ram dually (3.73 axle) has a gross combined capacity of 21,000#. The truck (2WD) with two occupants, a tonneau cover, and a 300# hitch, weighs 8,000#. This leaves 13k# for the trailer. So, no, not suitable for your trailer. If you get the truck with a 4.10 rear end, the capacity goes up 2,000# and is still not suitable for your trailer.

A trailer that heavy should be towed with a newer generation Ram. I understand your desire for a pre-emission truck. Same thoughts I had. Nicest part is you get a reliable truck and don't have to watch it depreciate that much. I paid $26k for mine seven years ago with 62k miles (less than 100k now).

I found my numbers online on a Ram website. The site was official and comprehensive. Thanks for your service.
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Old 02-12-2020, 08:43 PM   #11
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TBH, it was multiple factors. I really like the 5.9 in the Dodge that went away in 2007.5, but also know that they had issues with the front end. All the research Iíve done has the 2006-2007 GMs as one of the best Duramaxís made to date. Iíd definitely have to go 2011 or newer in the Ford. Not trying to mess with either of those Navistar motors.

We are at a crossroads. Part of us wants to buy something in the $25K range and keep our current daily drivers. The other part of us wants to go much newer and make the dually a daily driver.

So whatís our dilemma? Iím still Active Duty military and donít know where theyíll send us next. Driving a dually around the DC area would be absolute hell.
Ah I see. DC, Philly, New York, and similar places can be a pain in the butt with a dually at first. You get used to it quickly though an it isn't as much of a pain after a while. It becomes just as natural as any other truck. The length is much harder to deal with in my truck than the width. Parallel parking can be annoying on small streets though.
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Old 02-12-2020, 09:06 PM   #12
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Ah I see. DC, Philly, New York, and similar places can be a pain in the butt with a dually at first. You get used to it quickly though an it isn't as much of a pain after a while. It becomes just as natural as any other truck. The length is much harder to deal with in my truck than the width. Parallel parking can be annoying on small streets though.


Yeah, I just worry about parking in DC with it. I donít plan to drive it regularly there, other than to the train station, but still worry even parking there. Back up and 360 cameras on the new ones make it pretty easy to park them.
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Old 02-13-2020, 06:53 PM   #13
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I wouldnt buy anything newer than 08 without a warranty, theyre too expensive to fix. The older trucks are simple, easy and cheap to fix, can be bought cheap, and usually have similar axle ratings (the numbers that actaully matter) to new trucks. The price difference between a 6.0 powerstroke and a comparable cummins will usually more than cover the cost of bulletproofing and the rest of the truck is way nicer than anything gm or dodge put out.
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Old 02-14-2020, 07:36 AM   #14
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I wouldnt buy anything newer than 08 without a warranty, theyre too expensive to fix. The older trucks are simple, easy and cheap to fix, can be bought cheap, and usually have similar axle ratings (the numbers that actaully matter) to new trucks. The price difference between a 6.0 powerstroke and a comparable cummins will usually more than cover the cost of bulletproofing and the rest of the truck is way nicer than anything gm or dodge put out.


I donít think Iím going to get needed payload and tow ratings out of a 6.0, am I?
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