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Country Discussion Topics
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Opinions on a work truck needed
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Redbelly1    Posted 03-01-2001 at 04:00:56       [Reply]  [No Email]
I'm wanting to buy a used work truck. It needs to have enough power to pull a small one horse/cow trailer, but also get decent gas mileage.
I'd prefer a heavy duty 4X4, but not nessessary.
Also it needs to be reliable and easy to work on (few if any computerized components). Stuff like A/C does'nt matter.

Yall got any ideas?

Thanks in advance.

Gary    Posted 03-02-2001 at 06:33:49       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I recently saw the ultimate in work truck. excess to the max.
Ford F450 pickup, dually, extended crewcab with a sleeper. Seats 8-10. Had contractor bed and still room for 4x8 sheets laying flat.

NilsDK    Posted 03-01-2001 at 13:23:18       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Hi-All. About saving fuel I am told that keeping the end of the truck body open to reduce the wind resistance will save about 10% of fuel? It is interesting to hear if someone has anny experience about that.

Canadian Cowboy    Posted 03-01-2001 at 14:57:03       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Keeping the tailgate off and not putting something back in it place, ie , airflow gate, tie down a piece of rope is a no no, the box will begin to seperate and split apart at the corners, The day you put your tailgate back on and go to close it it won't, cause the slots ontop don't line up. Trust me it happens, especialy on older metal fatigued trucks ie work trucks,

Dan the idea of setting up some sort of tow truck boom in the box sounds intresting, how would you propse to do it? just wondering

Dan G/Soganofla    Posted 03-01-2001 at 13:51:20       [Reply]  [Send Email]
It does seem to help. A lot of folks are going to home-built tailgates made out of expanded steel to get an air-flow through it.

Canadian Cowboy    Posted 03-01-2001 at 11:06:44       [Reply]  [Send Email]
works trucks, my specialty,

a nice F250 4x4 ford, 1980-1990 wit ha 4speed or 5speed tranny, amd a 302, 351 or diesel engine. would be my choice,

Fords 6.9 lt or 7.3 lt diesels are good motors and will do alot of km's. The yare awsome on fuel consumption compared to the big block gas engines. You might also wanna have a flat deck instead of a box for the ultiame work truck, put tool boxes under neath and possible look into a hydrolic hoist for the flat deck, make it into a dump truck. add a Warn 12000 lbs winch on the front in a warn bumper or make a home made bumper and you have your self the ultamite work truck, oh ya, make your self a head ache rack or buy one if your going to get a regular box to mount lights too and hang baling twin, tire chains and cables from.

every truck arounf here is a work truck, and all 4x4 fords except for the 3 ton flatdeck,

just my two cents worth.

F14. Hey CC    Posted 03-01-2001 at 14:55:37       [Reply]  [No Email]
I've about trashed the box on my '89 Chevy K3500, I'm gonna put a rack dump on it this year hopefully. I already have a hoist under the stock box, but I'm planning to make my own body with a headache rack.

I got few questions you might be able to answer.

I'm going to go with a 92" width and 108" length, which will overhang the back of the frame quite a bit. What's the best way to get the socket for the Reese hitch out where you can get at it? I haul a 10,000 GVW trailer on a 2" ball.

Any recommendations for under-body toolboxes? I'm concerned mostly about the contents not getting wet from road spray, and the box not rotting out in a year or two.

What about gas tank filler neck extensions?

What about tail lights? In the perimiter frame of the bed? I don't want something hanging out in the breeze that will be getting the lenses crunched all the time.

If I can fund the rack dump this year, I hope to convert the full-floating rear axle to duals next year. I understand that I will need to swap drums and shoes as the dually uses wider brakes. Any pointers on this?

Any tips appreciated.

Canadian Cowboy    Posted 03-01-2001 at 15:58:41       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Its all in the design of the deck,

1) you will notice that most flat deck trucks the decks at the rear have a built in bumper. picture one foot of the deck cut of and welded back on verticaly. But your not going to weld it on, to the deck, you are going to have it hinged so your deck can be used as dump box. The bumper back will be attached to the back of the frame, welded or bolted like a regular factory bumper. Keep in mind that the hinges have to strong, make them out of 1/2" flat bar and 3/4 " round bar.

2) make the deck stick out past the hinged point about 6-8 inches so the material your dumping doesn't fall back onto the bumper.

3) mount you lights in slots cut out for them in the bumper and mount lights near the top of the head ache rack behind the cab, your turn signles and brake light.

4) again cut a slot in the bumper for the reciever hitch to fit into, the bumper if strong enough will act as support for the reciever hitch still bolted to the frame. again cut out an other slot to mount you electical hook up conector on the bumper so its a dirrect plug in, helps if you have a connector with a flip up cover.

4) gas lines and under deck boxes are easy, mount your boxes to the frame. Fit them to the truck as if they were conected to under side of the deck but realy they are attached to the frame. Same as the gas tank fillers, rig it up so they are mounted to the boxes, you mighthave to make up a pannel going from the edge of the box over the wheel and down to a box at the back, mount your gas tank fillers in these pannels. Good stuff to use is checker plate sheet metal,

5) mud flaps , big trucker style mud flaps will solve alot of your water and mud worries , the front boxes will be ok, the back ones too because of the mud flaps. start looking at how the under deck boxes are made on other trucks, they all have a 1-2" lip all around the front and then the door, just incase some one forgot to close the door all the stuff can't roll out.

6) converting a single wheel axle to a dualy, I looked into doing it, putting dualies on a 3/4 ton truck. To me it was to much work. Plus it would still only be a 3/4 ton axle. Go to a junk yard and get the 6 dually rims, you need 2 for the front, the brake assambly. look at how long the bold studs are on your rear end and on a 1 ton, I know fords are the same but not sure about gmc's you might just be better of with getting the whole dualy rear end and doing a direct bolt in,

its an all around good idea, what sorta hoist do you have, and how does it operate.

Good luck on the project hope ive helped.

F14    Posted 03-01-2001 at 18:01:10       [Reply]  [No Email]
The K3500 is a one ton chassis, so the rearend thing should be fairly easy. I REALLY want duals. Swapping the entire rearend is a possibility, but I'd have to match ratios as the truck is a 4WD.

The hoist is an electric/hyraulic scissors, and will lift a LOT of weight, which is part of the reason the box is so pounded up. It's been a MAJOR asset, I'll never have another truck without one.

The rear bumper/hinge deal is so obvious, I can't believe I didn't think of it. Thanks.

You've helped a bunch, I'm gonna print this out and stick it in my "fix up my truck" file.

Thanks again,

Rob    Posted 11-16-2003 at 16:44:28       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I have a 1993 Chev dually extended cab with a 6.5 turbo diesel with a mechanical pump. I recently put a dumping insert into my factory box - it's electric over hydraulic - works well, but looks ugly. Would love to make factory box dumping. Could you possibly send me a picture or any information regarding yours. I understand it dumps. Email or I can give you my address and you could mail it to me.

BFO    Posted 03-01-2001 at 18:56:20       [Reply]  [No Email]
What I've done in the past is weld a 1/2 inch plate across the back, and cut out for a receiver, or bolt a pintle hook to it. You should have enough frame after the rear spring hanger to weld a gusset the full depth of the 1/2" plate, and you can weld stiffeners behind it. What you have to keep in mind is keep the ball as close to the axle as possible, too much overhang on the hitch puts the weight too far back and makes for some interesting driving characteristics. At the very least keep the distance the same as it is now.
I like to use DOM tube and a minimum 1" pivot pins on dump bodies, bigger pins have a greater load bearing surface, and won't wear out as quick. Get some 3/8" wall DOM and you'll have plenty to weld to.
You can also buy the hardware and make your own boxes, and with an epoxy paint, you can get away with using steel. Might be cheaper to buy ready made, i don't know?

F14    Posted 03-02-2001 at 04:15:38       [Reply]  [No Email]

BFO    Posted 03-02-2001 at 04:55:21       [Reply]  [No Email]
Drawn Over Mandrel, it's a seamless tube. You can look in the P-A catalogue, and look up cylinder cross tubes. They have 1" in various lengths, as well as pins. They're thick enough to put a grease nipple in.

F14...Ah.    Posted 03-02-2001 at 05:02:50       [Reply]  [No Email]

Dan G/Soganofla    Posted 03-01-2001 at 13:47:17       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I gotta agree about those diesels, CC, but he said he wanted it easy to work on. I had a '82 Chevy Crew Cab dually that was a horse. It had the 6.2 in it. You sound like me, wanting to add a bunch of stuff to the truck, only I never get around to actually doing it. I've got some damage(son-in-law vs barn) on the bed of my current dually. I've located another bed from a single and I'm thinking of splitting it, and making the whole bed 8' wide instead of having those useless bumps on the side. I was also thinkin' that a feller could install a boom, like on a tow truck, that would fold down flush with the bottom of the bed. Seems like it would be handy.

trey    Posted 08-22-2003 at 20:39:08       [Reply]  [Send Email]
do you still have the fender extensions on the sides of the bed if so and not damaged I would like to buy them

magpie    Posted 03-01-2001 at 08:16:48       [Reply]  [No Email]
Iguess I agree with Dan the Dodge 318 with a 4 speed would be a very good choice. Definitly stay away from automatics. Also watch out for the newer 3/4 ton rear axles many are semi floating. What is far superior is the full floating rear axle, it is easier to work on and is stronger. I dont agree that something before 85 aint practical, condition is more important than age, but watch for rust, mechical things are easy to fix, but rust is a headache, in my opinion that is.

Spencer Greely    Posted 03-01-2001 at 08:14:33       [Reply]  [No Email]
If you want good gas consumption with no load
and don't care with when loaded then any of the
straight six 1/2 ton pickup with a standard trans would do. The V6's and 4's are out. Don't know much on the new vortec engines, maybe they're good but high rev.
Too bad they don't make any more of the small
8's like the 283,289 that would be perfect.
I am tempted to say go with a autotrans but
a standard would give you better mileage, but you
really have to be easy on the clutch and first gear, and I know I've towed alot. Order a lower ratio diff as well. If you go autotrans, don't forget the additional radiator and use a tow package.
As for weight, stay clear of the extend cab
and if you don't carry much get a short box.


Dan G/Soganofla    Posted 03-01-2001 at 05:55:14       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Late 80's Dodge with a 318. I have 2 of'em with over 200k miles...they just don't quit. The 86 Ramcharger has the overdrive tranny and gets 18 mpg at 55-60 mph. The 87 p/u gets about 14. They have a computer, but it only costs $100 to replace, and rarely fails. Had the tranny rebuilt on the Ramcharger for $350. If you can stand that silly sounding starter, they are good trucks.

F14    Posted 03-01-2001 at 04:11:36       [Reply]  [No Email]
The "few if any computerized components" effectively limits you to pre-1985 or so, which I don't think is practical. You'd be VERY lucky to find a truck that old that isn't completely ragged out.

I don't know what you consider 'decent' gas mileage, but I'd be tickled spitless with anything over 14 or 15 MPG in a 4WD, or 2WD towing a trailer.

I'd be looking for a 3/4 ton with a small V8 and fuel injection due to mileage and reliability. A diesel is another option if you don't make a lot of short trips. Any of the Big 3 (Ford, GM and Dodge) make a model that will fill the bill.

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