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Truck vs. Truck

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Old 03-15-2017, 02:25 PM   #31
dogger15
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How do you test drive a truck. I guess you can't do a fully loaded 6 hr tow session....

Some of you say test drove all three extensively. What do you do and look for?
Good question. Like you said, you can't really test the truck's towing ability, so what I check for are the same things I check for with any new vehicle. Fit and finish, styling, available options, "fun to drive", etc. For the rest, I do the research on things like capability and reliability usually from impartial third party sources.

I can pass a couple of things along as a newbie to these kinds of trucks. When I took delivery of mine I was switching from a 1500 "sport" truck. The first thing I noticed is how ponderous my new truck was. Second thing was I'm going to need a kidney belt to deal with the ride. After a couple of months, the size is no longer a factor and I let a bunch of air out of the tires to calm the ride to where it's actually comfortable. The air pressure fix is not new but is complicated by several factors. Due to dealing with the lowest common denominator and liability laws, GM no longer publishes laden and unladen tire pressures. Now it's one size fits all which gets you 70 psi in the back and 60 psi in the front. The first time you cross a speed bump at anything faster than a crawl, you'll appreciate the extra headroom. I lowered my rears to 60 and my fronts to 50 for a much better ride, but I think another 10 psi reduction would be even better. Unfortunately the TPMS disagrees and 60/50 is it. The point I'm making, is know the stiff ride you encounter during the test drive can be alleviated to some extent after you buy the truck. I also know none of the dealers will lower the TPMS alarm settings due to liability concerns - the lowest common denominator I mentioned before.

A friend of mine is a big diesel guy and now that I have one, he sends me all kinds of info about them. Last week he sent me this YouTube clip showing the results from a towing test this enthusiast site does every year. In this test, they put 3500 diesels from the big three through the same ringer called the "Ike Gauntlet" to see which one was the best. Interesting test and a good view showing the towing capabilities of these trucks as well as the veracity of "claims" made by the manufacturers. Test and videos like these are the next best thing since you can't do this on a new truck you're considering yourself:

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Old 03-16-2017, 11:54 PM   #32
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A gas 3/4 ton HD truck is much cheaper and runs much smoother than a diesel. If not used solely for towing and if towed weight is kept under 10k (easy with a single race car even on a steel frame trailer), then a gas 3/4 ton is a better choice, IMO. In terms of gas' lower pulling/torque numbers vs diesel, just drive it as a 'momentum" truck -- less braking and acceleration, more planning ahead, smth like SPB vs GTC#.
In terms of stability and braking, there's no difference between a gas and diesel 3/4 ton HD.

Last edited by hf1; 03-17-2017 at 12:14 AM.
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Old 03-17-2017, 01:27 AM   #33
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Meh

Turbodiesel much more special. Lots more characterful engine.

Ride quality in a 3/4 or 1 ton can be tamed with smaller wheels, larger tires, and some suspension upgrades

Doc's comments about "stay away from Dodge" may be about his experiences with them many years ago. One hint is that he calls them Dodge, when they have been RAM for almost a decade . i'm on my second RAM diesel and I have love them both with no issues.
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Old 03-17-2017, 09:10 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by dogger15 View Post
A friend of mine is a big diesel guy and now that I have one, he sends me all kinds of info about them. Last week he sent me this YouTube clip showing the results from a towing test this enthusiast site does every year. In this test, they put 3500 diesels from the big three through the same ringer called the "Ike Gauntlet" to see which one was the best. Interesting test and a good view showing the towing capabilities of these trucks as well as the veracity of "claims" made by the manufacturers. Test and videos like these are the next best thing since you can't do this on a new truck you're considering yourself:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2GxztJit22A
They are pulling 30k up the Rockies in this test! Most here will be pulling <10k. And, the higher the tow rating on a truck (1 ton, diesel, dually, and all the other 'manly' stuff) the more it will drive 'like a truck' (hard, rough, and loud).
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Old 03-17-2017, 03:54 PM   #35
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They are pulling 30k up the Rockies in this test! Most here will be pulling <10k. And, the higher the tow rating on a truck (1 ton, diesel, dually, and all the other 'manly' stuff) the more it will drive 'like a truck' (hard, rough, and loud).
Actually they are pulling less than 23K (the limit of the Silverado), but the point I was making is look at what these trucks can do. If it can pull that much weight up and down that kind of grade at that high of an altitude, imagine how easy that same engine/transmission combo in a lighter 2500 will pull your much lighter car hauler.

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A gas 3/4 ton HD truck is much cheaper and runs much smoother than a diesel.
Cheaper yes (about $8K on average), smoother no. Same truck except for the drive train and no extra NVH from a diesel drive train.
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Old 03-17-2017, 05:41 PM   #36
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In a lot of states diesel costs the same as premium +/- $0.0X (minimal variance) When compared to gas (regular) this should be taken into account as well as the additional maintenance required by a diesel.
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Old 03-17-2017, 07:03 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by dogger15 View Post
Cheaper yes (about $8K on average), smoother no. Same truck except for the drive train and no extra NVH from a diesel drive train.
Discounts on new 3/4 ton gas trucks are much larger. Used gas trucks are further cheaper than used diesel. Plus much easier to find a used gas truck that has only been posed, washed, and pampered vs a diesel that's likely been worked like a horse (towing, plowing). Gas drive-train much smoother than diesel when not towing. Regular gas fuel cheaper than diesel, plus much cheaper to maintain. You can get a lot of almost new 3/4 ton gas truck for under $20k. Will be about 2x that for a diesel. IMO, 1+ ton, diesel, and dually are all overkill for towing a single race car. Just offering a different angle.
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Old 03-17-2017, 07:29 PM   #38
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In a lot of states diesel costs the same as premium +/- $0.0X (minimal variance) When compared to gas (regular) this should be taken into account as well as the additional maintenance required by a diesel.
MPG better with a diesel.

It it all depends on what you're pulling and how nonchalant you want the experience to be.
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Old 03-17-2017, 07:39 PM   #39
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MPG better with a diesel.

It it all depends on what you're pulling and how nonchalant you want the experience to be.
Agreed that is 1 point. Amortize the increased acquisition cost + increased cost of fuel and maintenance over the miles versus a gas version.
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Old 03-17-2017, 10:09 PM   #40
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Agreed that is 1 point. Amortize the increased acquisition cost + increased cost of fuel and maintenance over the miles versus a gas version.
Honestly, if I was that fixated on costs I wouldn't be a track rat towing machinery to the track.
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Old 03-21-2017, 03:05 AM   #41
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Default Ford Ford Ford

Having a business that runs all Fords for the last 12 years and all super duty's that work every day, I would say they are the best. Not only do they do the job without any hesitation, they do it day in and day out with little to no repair costs. In the last 12 years I have driven them more than 500K miles and the repairs costs have been less 5K. Not only that, the trade in value is astonishing. In 2010 I bought a brand new lariat 350 for 47K with everything. Drove it 100k and got 27K trade in. That is an incredible value. Also buying a 350 over a 250 is always the right way to go for a couple of reasons; first is the heavier springs vs air bags, secondly they always are more marketable on the sell end. That being said, all three of the American manufactures make great trucks, but to me the best resale has always been the Ford hands down, and the 17's are about as great of a truck as has ever been. Nearly 900 lbs of torque right out of the box, that is incredible.... And they didn't take a dime from the government during the recession.
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Old 03-21-2017, 03:24 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by PorscheDoc View Post
We tow with the following rigs: All are diesel.

2014 2500HD GMC: 24ft enclosed dove
2016 3500HD GMC Denali Dually: 48 foot goose
2016 Ford F450 Dually: 44 foot 3 car ATC stacker
2016 Ford F250 Short Bed: 32 foot dove (moving to a goose)
Doc, you pull 44 stacker with a f450 fully loaded with 3 cars? what kind of mileage do you get, and are you towing on flat ground or how does it do on hills? I was cautioned by both ATC and Intech to skip even the 106 sportchassis and go for the 112. I never even contemplated using a f450 How is it in crosswinds too?

thanks!
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Old 03-21-2017, 04:19 PM   #43
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Doc, you pull 44 stacker with a f450 fully loaded with 3 cars? what kind of mileage do you get, and are you towing on flat ground or how does it do on hills? I was cautioned by both ATC and Intech to skip even the 106 sportchassis and go for the 112. I never even contemplated using a f450 How is it in crosswinds too?

thanks!
The stacker is a 44' ATC. Towing three mustangs, each weighing 3500 or so. The only time you feel the trailer back there is on a hill, and even then, it has no problem pulling it up while accelerating. Most of these new diesels have tow ratings into the 20k lbs range, crazy the power they have. it is super solid in crosswind and passing trailers. The two car atc dove when being towed by the F250 gets knocked all over the place, especially when passing semis. I think the bigger the trailer, the better it tows. Oh mileage.....i think around 6 @ 85






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