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  1. #1
    Super Member flusher's Avatar
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    Jun 2005
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    6,358
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    Northern California-Tehama Co.
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    2008 Mahindra 5525, 1964 MF-135 diesel, 1951 Farmall Super A, 1951 Minneapolis Moline BF, 1945 Oliver 60 Row Crop, 1949 JD B widefront

    Default How to spot a used 3/4 or 1T PU with enough grunt

    I'm getting closer to finding the 1999-2003 3/4 or 1T PU I need to pull a 10K GN for hauling my parade tractors (heaviest is about 4500 lb).

    I'll be test driving some candidates soon.
    This will be the first PU I've bought totally for towing grunt.

    Question: short of putting the candidate truck on a dyno or hooking up a loaded 10K GN trailer, what should I look for that will tell me if the truck will tow loads anywhere near the specs you find in the manuals or that you read about in forums like this one?

    Any tricks of the trade that I should use during a test drive to get a handle on this question?

    I'd hate to get stuck with an otherwise acceptable truck that has a worn out engine that's short on grunt.

  2. #2
    Super Member JB4310's Avatar
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    Feb 2005
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    5,645
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    Central CT
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    J.D. 4310 E-hydro

    Default Re: How to spot a used 3/4 or 1T PU with enough grunt

    Simple, no tricks. IMO, You need an in-line 6 cylinder diesel.

    There are no choices in that category IMO, just one, I don't have to mention any names, you know, everyone knows

    I might not be so sure if you didn't say "bought totally for towing"
    But since that's your main criteria, that's the answer.

    Go with the 1 ton with duals, As far as the gearing goes, not sure what to recommend for just 10K towing, maybe others will help.
    The lower gears will give the "GRUNT your looking for, but some may say that for that load, high gears would be better.

    Good luck, JB
    Last edited by JB4310; 02-02-2010 at 09:40 PM. Reason: Added a couple of IMO's so I don't sound to pompous
    JD 4310; E hydro, 300CX, 48 BH, 60" box, 72" rake, 72" rear blade, cast pallet forks, 48", 61"HD & 73" high volume bucket.
    FORD 1700; 2 WD, 2600 hrs.
    JD 320; Hydra lift, 48" deck and 48" snow blade.
    2007 Dodge Ram 3500, Cummins 6.7L, Aisin 6 speed, 9ft utility body.

  3. #3
    Super Star Member Diamondpilot's Avatar
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    Jan 2007
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    14,146
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    Daleville, IN
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    Jinma 254/284 Ford 861 Powermaster at work

    Default Re: How to spot a used 3/4 or 1T PU with enough grunt

    10K is not much weight for any diesel. Even a bow tie could handle that.

    Since its just for towing I would want 4:10 gears and may settle for 3.73 gears but would not want the 3.55 or 3.54 gears Dodge put in a lot of trucks.

    If it runs good and checks out by your trusted mechanic it will be up to the task. Many of us tow that type of load with gasers and some with 1/2 ton trucks. I don't even break out my diesels for towing until I get to 8K or more.

    Chris

  4. #4
    Veteran Member buck12's Avatar
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    May 2006
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    1,216
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    NW Mississippi
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    Mahindra 2615

    Default Re: How to spot a used 3/4 or 1T PU with enough grunt

    Its easy to spot good trucks - look for the blue oval

  5. #5
    Silver Member
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    Sep 2006
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    144
    Location
    ohio
    Tractor
    kabota

    Default Re: How to spot a used 3/4 or 1T PU with enough grunt

    IF IT A FORD WITH AN AUTOMATIC. THE TORQUE CONVERTER IS BAD IF AFTER IT IS WARMED UP IDLEING IN PARK. IT SOUNDS LIKE SHAKING A CAN OF MARBELS. IT IS A 1500.00 REPAIR. IT HAPENED TO ME AT 110,000 MILES

  6. #6
    Silver Member
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    Apr 2006
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    159

    Default Re: How to spot a used 3/4 or 1T PU with enough grunt

    My 2000 SRW F-350 V-10 5 spd manual w/ 4.30 gears pulls my 14k rated dump trailer just fine. (10mpg loaded, 12-13 mpg empty)
    Personally speaking you don't need a diesel to pull 10k. With the cost of diesel being higher than gasoline (at least in CA) there is no payback to buying one. Unless it's an ego thing...
    When diesel was $0.30 a gallon cheaper than gas, it was about an 80k mile breakeven point.

  7. #7
    Silver Member
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    Oct 2009
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    Ladysmith, British Columbia
    Tractor
    Don't have one of my own! I work on other people's machines.

    Default Re: How to spot a used 3/4 or 1T PU with enough grunt

    It sounds like you're not towing too much, and I don't have experience with many light trucks but what I do suggest is that if you're going to work it hard every day, get a slightly larger truck like a Topkick. It will stand up better over time.

    @JB4310: Why dual tires? I've run both, and currently have single tires on my 1 ton. I find the single tires track better in mud and deep snow. Another bonus is that when you get back onto pavement, there is no need to check for rocks lodged between the tires; one of those letting loose is a brown trousers kind of event. ...and it's two fewer tires to check in the morning.

    With little trucks like we're talking about there's no advantage, GVW wise, in running duallies; at least not where I live. You could run two lighter(cheaper) tires, I suppose.
    I assert that the egg came before the chicken: Dinosaurs were laying eggs long before chickens evolved.

    madwelder.wordpress.com

  8. #8
    Elite Member AKfish's Avatar
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    Kasilof, Alaska
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    JD 5075M; JD 110 TLB; Ford Ferguson 9N: JD X300R

    Default Re: How to spot a used 3/4 or 1T PU with enough grunt

    This is a thread that I've following with a measure of self-interest - might be interested in moving my 3/4 ton and getting a 1 ton rig, too.

    One concern that I have is - chipped trucks! More than enough horror stories out there regarding abuse and real hard use with guys chipping everything with an accelerator pedal!

    How do you know whether you're sittin' behind the wheel of a truck that's had the cr@p chipped otta it?

    AKfish
    "Most people want to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth occurs while you're climbing it."

  9. #9
    New Member
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    Jan 2010
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    24
    Location
    Santa Cruz County, California
    Tractor
    Kubota L3830 GST

    Default Re: How to spot a used 3/4 or 1T PU with enough grunt

    Ok I have to chime in. I would say that the in line six (Dodge) is the best power plant out there for the light duty diesels. Too bad it is in a Dodge

    The Ford 7.3 liter is legendary and is truely a half million mile motor. However, the tranny like a lot of others is not the best. If you change the fluids increase the size of the pump etc. and add a differant pan with air cooling fins etc. the tranny will last you a very long time. If you can find one with a manual tranny (like mine) your problems are over the whole package can't be stopped.

    I bought my first Ford regular cab Diesel (manual) and ran it till I had too many kids and then sold her for a crew cab diesel 6.0 liter one ton single rear wheel and I am still running it. I do tow some large loads 15,000 + with out any trouble. My smaller load is my kubota 3830 with FEL and implements approx 7,000 lbs + 1,500 pound trailer. Tow some hard grades with her and runs at around 60 mph with no hesitation. It has been a great truck. The only problem I have had was the clutch sensor went out for the cruise control but with an 80 dollar part it was fixed.

    Oh yea I bought both trucks new and have not modified either one. They both pulled like crazy. Remember all diesels need to be warmed up and the turbo cooled down. Run synthetic in the new diesels since they run way too hot and can burn the oil easily. Maintenance is key!

  10. #10
    Super Member RickB's Avatar
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    Eastern NY
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    Case 885, JD 730D, Ford 4000

    Default Re: How to spot a used 3/4 or 1T PU with enough grunt

    You don't need a diesel to pull 10K#.
    It's nice, but not a necessity.
    You don't need a DRW truck to pull 10K#.
    It's nice, but not a necessity.
    We have too much gun control.
    What we need is more idiot control.

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