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Pickup truck questions
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Dale (MI)    Posted 10-10-2001 at 06:49:17       [Reply]  [No Email]
Anyone have experience with Cummins diesels? Is Dodge the only truck that uses them? Why are diesels not recommended for snow plowing?

bub    Posted 10-11-2002 at 16:18:15       [Reply]  [No Email]
i have a 67 chevy pu long bed,and a 79 chevy pu short bed both have two piece drive lines,can it be modified to a one piece drive line on both trucks,if so how is it done the correct way.

dan miller    Posted 07-17-2002 at 15:12:21       [Reply]  [Send Email]

just got a 1997 ford ranger,

do trucks break differently than cars ?

seems like the breaks kinda want to lock up
a little, compared to a car.

are the breaks designed to have a load in back ?

Stanford Butterswerth    Posted 03-04-2002 at 04:45:50       [Reply]  [No Email]
Back in my day, we ate dirt and were happy to get it. I've been driving a '62 Fairlane that I converted into a pickup for 30 years now and it'll out haul or out tow any of these new fangled pickups. It's got a poso trac rear end and it's better than a 4 wheel drive. I drive my lady, Thelma Jean to church and bingo every week and everybody stares at us because they're all jealous that I got such a fine truck for so little. It has a 3 on the tree and that's better than any auto-matic any day. I put me some of them leaf spring spacers in the back and it holds more than a one ton.

BTD    Posted 10-10-2001 at 17:45:10       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Dale, check out this website, The have a ton on information and discussion boards regarding the Rams with the Cummins B-Series diesel engine. Dodge will Not be dropping the Cummins, the new quieter Cummins mentioned below is one with a common rail fuel system and some other enhancements. I have a 2001 2500 Ram with the 24 valve diesel and I love the truck. -BTD

Old Sarge    Posted 10-10-2001 at 08:13:06       [Reply]  [Send Email]
To answer your questions on Cummins dsls would get quite lengthy. However Yes at this time Dodge is the only one that uses the Cummins 300 in their light trucks. Note here, they offer them in the 3/4 ton models HOWEVER check the front axles and suspensions; they are 1 ton. The weight of the engine is too great for the standard 3/4 ton. All the 300 is, is a scaled down version of the Cummins 400 Formula III found in Freightliners, and many other makes of Class 8 trucks.

With the sale of Freightliner to Ford a few years ago, along with it went Cummins who was owned by them. Look for Ford to start using the Cummins 300 in the near future. As far as Dodge is concerned, the Chrysler Corp merged or bought Daimler Benz who make Mercedes. They have been working in designing a replacement for the Cummins as the contract between Cummins and Chrysler/Dosge runs out this year or next (not sure which), but I look for Dodge pickups to be powered soon with a Mercedes Diesel.

As far as them not being recommended for a snow plow blade, I didn't think they weren't. The only drawback I could see here is if they have an automatic trans, it would require a transmission cooler.

Jim (Mi)    Posted 10-10-2001 at 11:52:14       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Actually Dodge is NOT planning on getting rid of the Cummings. I have already drove the '2004' #2500 series Ram. Currently the new style ram will only be offered in 1500 series, the 2500 is not scheduled until 2004 with the diesel. My friend works for Borg Warner, and has one camoflaged in his driveway. He is testing the vehicle. The new cummings is amazingly quieter, he can actually order from the drive-thru without shutting the thing off now. He went up to the Arctic Circle in March and they were doing their cold test. Currently the problem they are running into is rear end heat, and noise problems.

Dale (MI)    Posted 10-10-2001 at 12:10:43       [Reply]  [No Email]
Jim, are you at the Chelsea proving grounds by chance? I am headed over to a Chelsea dealership to look at trucks in a little while.

Jim (Mi)    Posted 10-10-2001 at 12:21:46       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Actually I am a designer for GM. I work in Warren at the Tech Center. My father will retire from Chrysler next year with 30 and out. My brother-in-law, plus friend are both Engineers for Borg Warner, and they deal with Chrysler. I just follow Chrysler, because they put food on my table for so many years, and that is all I ever owned so far.But my next vehicle will be a Chevy. Plus since I am a designer, I like to look at the competition.

magpie    Posted 10-10-2001 at 19:35:11       [Reply]  [No Email]
Well Jim, since you are a designer, mabey you could tell me why I can't buy a good truck anymore. Here is what I want,. A simple easy to drive truck, with plain wheels, 4 speed transmission with compound low, a simple easy to read dash panel free from frills and silly nonsense, a wiper switch on the dashboard not on the turnsignal lever, a good working tailgate with chains and hooks. Also what really gripes me is the lack of a drip rail around the top of the cab. What we need is a 64-66 G.M.C. with leaf springs instead of those silly coils, and do away with the independent front suspention. There you go that would be my dream truck, yes I'm a bit of a radical, but all the new pickups are more than radical in the wrong way. When I go to look for a "new" truck, I start with Hemmings motor news.

Jim (Mi)    Posted 10-11-2001 at 05:38:30       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I unfortunately do not have all the answers, or maybe the ones you would like to hear, but since you asked I will give my (opinion). I think trucks today are far superior to yesterdays trucks. This is gona be a long post I can see. First trucks today are based on the law of large numbers. All the companies have numerous (ungodly numerous) amounts of public opinion polls and sit downs to see what the consumer wants. Although these trucks may not fit your needs, they base them on the large majority. Also take into account competition. Moving backwards in any industry never keeps you competitive. Also take in account that we are being mandated by the gov't for safety issues. Also we sell our products in other countries, so we need to appeal to their consumers also.

Me personally, I want every bell and whistle I can find on a car. I love pushing a button, and having toasty buns, because the seat warms up. I like the fact my truck drives like a cadillac, instead of my 80's truck that I cannot talk in for fear or biting my tongue off. Plus independant suspension is so much better for the vehicle itself. A new truck does not even need a tune-up until after 100k miles. Earlier trucks could never even dream of going that far. Plain Wheels. I do not know where you live, but where I live everyone has those custom wheel things, so the more appealing a truck looks, the better it sells. (This is generally a younger gen thing.) Wiper on turn signal switch. Great idea. A six footer does not sit right against the dashboard. This means he has to reach. Reacting is bad for safety. You take your eyes off the road for a split second. That is why you see cruise, and radio controls on the steering wheel. Inst. cluster. I agree with you, they are to cluttered. Unfortunately, the studio guys (jerks) have to have a THEME, and the guages have to have a certain light, and look. Ex. PONTIAC. That is why the HUD is selling. People do not have to look down, and take their eyes off the road. Drip rails. Agree, pain not having them, but I agree with the masses, they look dumb. I would rather have the rain. But most still have a drip rail incorporated in the upper inner door jams. Transmission. That is the only thing on a vehicle, I could not even tell you one component about. I have fixed just about every component on previous vehicles I owned except tranny's.

I like most new innovations. Serpentine belts have not made anyone's life any easier. Halogen lights, are now how hard to replace. A/C system's last and perform at record levels. Radio's look and sound ten times better. Seats mold to your fanny. Hitting a dashboard will not crack your skull in an accident. I have seen cars flipped and cut in half, and people walk away. Gotta love crumple points. Airbags, a thing of beauty. The gov't iniated a law for 2003, that now there needs to be head bags now along the pillars. Basically they want the whole compartment to balloon up in an accident. Getting in a head on collision will not thrust the steering wheel into your chest to render you lifeless. This is just the tip of the iceberg, I could go on for days.

Most people want simpler to equal cheaper. Actually cars are not that much. I wish I would of saved an article I read in the Detroit News about two months ago. It is actually cheaper now, than it has ever been. It based it's study off the national average annual salary, and the average price for a vehicle. I was amazed myself. I am going to write them, and see if I can track that down. But that is not that hard to believe, since the 70's average fast food worker made how much an hour? (Scared to think.) Today McD is hiring for 10/11 an hour.

magpie    Posted 10-11-2001 at 20:43:08       [Reply]  [No Email]
I suppose you people have to cater to popular demand. In my opinion the solid I beam suspension is better beacuse it has fewer moving parts. I find that the ride isn't much rougher than IFS. I think fancy wheels look just plain silly. I don't agree with you about the wiper switch. I think drip rails look very good. I hate most options except a heater. My truck dosen't even have a radio. And as far as cheap goes I would gladly pay a premium for a simple truck. No my friend I am not cheap. Yes I agree I think some of the improvements are good, like the electronic fuel injection, you can start it on a cold morning and not have to babysit it. I need a good truck to get me from point A to point B. Also to do hualing around the little farm we have. I do not need or want a rolling entertainment center. I don't really Know where you get your opinion polls from, but I doubt if you guys ever ask the opinions of us older guys. And finally I think all new trucks are just plain ugly. So there you are Jim, I guess we don't agree on a lot of things, and I suspect it has something to do with our ages.

Ludwig    Posted 10-12-2001 at 10:31:26       [Reply]  [No Email]
Lets not forget the wonder that is electronic
ignition. You wanna change/adjust/clean
points again?
I like my stereo, course I drive 80mi a day
round trip, I also like the adjustable lumbar
support in the seat. Don't want/need heated
seats though.
I do wish I could get another truck with an all
vinal interior though, that was so easy to
clean! Pretty cold in the winter and hot in the
summer though.
I'd like to see something used for a headliner
that won't fall down like the cloth does.

Did you ever get the feeling that the people
used in the poles are not the people that buy
used cars? I mean people that want gadgets
are not the people like me that get angry when
they break, these are the people who get a
new car every three or four years.

BTW: I'm 25.....

Jim (Mi)    Posted 10-12-2001 at 13:12:11       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I'm 24

Jim (Mi)    Posted 10-12-2001 at 05:50:33       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Our ages probably have quite a bit to do with it. Also, of course I am
biased, being I am in the industry. I never meant you as and individual are cheap. If my post appeared to state otherwise, I truly am sorry. I just meant as a generalization, people want to refer to previous days for economical reasons.

bob    Posted 10-12-2001 at 18:18:05       [Reply]  [Send Email]
pickups used to be work horses now in most new ones people never haul anything but groceries. trouble is yuppies control polls but they are the ones who purchase new ones. when people go back to a car for #1 vechile pickups will become work horses again i have a new chev 4 wheel drive and do all my hauling with 82 chev 3/4 ton some of new things are nice i admit

Ludwig    Posted 10-11-2001 at 13:37:38       [Reply]  [No Email]
In the 70's how much did you worry about
health insurance? Car insurance? Insurance

Sure IFS makes for a smoother ride, but did
you ever try to work on it? Put a locker or
limited slip up front? They don't exist mate...
I like coil springs okay, at least full size Dodge
and Jeeps have solid axles.
Ever plow with a Chevy? Not much if you want
it to drive straight. I love to see those fools
plowing with an S10, try for an alignment
Ah, lets remember Fords TTB IFSish
alignment every 3000 miles. Thats real

Electric windows, thats real progress too, the
older the car gets the slower they work until
one day....... You ever try to fix those?

I'm a fan of simplicity because I know, KNOW
that things will break. I want to be able to fix
stupid simple things for myself, like the wiper
control on the dashboard. Heck, put it in the
door, its a sight better than taking the dash
apart. Isn't that why the column shift "three on
the tree" didn't just get more gears? Those
were alot of fun to fix.

Oh, I almost forgot, how often do you want to
replace half shafts? Drive a GM through a
field, puncture the CV boot, replace the half
shaft. Catch a rock just right, puncture the CV
boot, replace the half shaft. Some punk cuts
the CV boot, replace the half shaft...... Straight
axle gets hit by a stick in the field....Keep
GMs gotta either protect that CV boot or get a
better system. Of course I expect they make
some money on the parts.
The best story on that is if they (the dealer)
install the WRONG PART one time. Next time
it needs replacing (sooner than with the right
part mind you) they put in the wrong part again
because they assume there was a reason for
the other part being in there. Now you're
getting tagged $300 a year because the
dealer screwed up. I finally sued the dealer
over that one... Got my money, that doesn't
account for the hours in the shop, missed
work or dangers of driving with a BROKEN CV.

My last rant is about my Dakota, the oil filter is
in the STUPIDEST place, and it points up.
Thus the only way to take it off is from below
so that all that oil in the mount flows down
your arm. If they hadn't put it in the wheelwell
you wouldn't have to be right underneith to
reach it..... Somebody should get beat for that
one, and the oil monkey from the quickie lube
that I go to would be at the head of the line.

Ludwig (again)    Posted 10-11-2001 at 13:39:56       [Reply]  [No Email]
I know that last post was really long, but it kills
me when I think of this. I know its really not the
automakers fault...
So they do all this checking to see what
people want, what people like, what people
will drive.....
Just because people want it that way is it
right? Is it any better? Do people REALLY
know what they want or what is good for
I'm not saying I do, heck I know way better than
that, its just something to think on.

Jim (Mi)    Posted 10-12-2001 at 05:21:00       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I think I am being profiled. You People. Anyway in an effort to save my fingers, and since this issue will never be resolved between us, I will reserve responses, since this was not the original topic starter. Ludwig, what year and motor is your Dakota. My dad has a 93' 318cid and the oil filter is in an annoying spot but not upside down. My 97' Ram had a pretty easy one to get to. My 97' 3.9L had a oil filter in a bad spot that only a band oil filter remover could remove it. It ran all over, but it was not upside down. My new Dakota with the 3.9L finally addressed this issue for this year. I now have hand clearance, and it does not drain down the linkage.

Ludwig    Posted 10-12-2001 at 10:26:41       [Reply]  [No Email]
Actually as I wrote it I realized what I was
saying might be a little tough to understand
but after a full day at work I couldn't figure out a
better way to put it.

What I mean is that the opening of the filter is
above the closed end. Of course as I think of it
now there isn't really anyway you could POINT
the filter to keep oil from coming out when you
take the filter off. The problem is that the filter
sits into a little space in the wheelwell so the
only way you can get your hand onto it good is
from directly underneith. Thus the oil runs right
down your arm. On my '88 S15 w/2.8l I could
take the filter off from above which was pretty
Mine is a '96 318ci, aside from that and the
exceptionally lousy design for the passenger
seat catch I'm pretty happy with it. Heck it
towed my tractor 300 miles without so much
as a wimper.

I don't remember saying "you people" and I
don't feel like rereading my post right now, but
if I did I appologise. I work in tech support and
get alot of that profiling too.

Magpie    Posted 10-12-2001 at 17:50:29       [Reply]  [No Email]
Ludwig, I said "you people", I didn't intend to single out Jim but meant designers in general. I still can't help but get the feeling that designers create this spacey racy looking junk, without consulting people that really have to use trucks to work with. Anyway when I buy a vehicle I get the best I can afford, and I expect it to last at least 20 years. I have a 70 Dodge powerwagon W200 I fully expect it to go for another 5 years. (BTW) the oil filter is in a poor place also.

Magpie    Posted 10-12-2001 at 17:50:07       [Reply]  [No Email]
Ludwig, I said "you people", I didn't intend to single out Jim but meant designers in general. I still can't help but get the feeling that designers create this spacey racy looking junk, without consulting people that really have to use trucks to work with. Anyway when I buy a vehicle I get the best I can afford, and I expect it to last at least 20 years. I have a 70 Dodge powerwagon W200 I fully expect it to go for another 5 years. (BTW) the oil filter is in a poor place also.

Jim (Mi)    Posted 10-12-2001 at 10:44:13       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I meant the profiling in a complete jest way. I work in the most politically correct place I have ever seen. Terribly annoying. My dad uses his 93' Dakota to tow a 23' Whaler. He does not even shut off the O/D. He has over 200K and the only problem he has ever had was the pitman arm seal leaked twice. My wife's little Dakota pulled my WD with front end loader, and weighted tires (approx #7000 total), with only the 3.9L. Those little trucks pack a pretty good punch.

Ludwig    Posted 10-12-2001 at 16:26:45       [Reply]  [No Email]
Sure do pack a punch. Trouble is sometimes there isn't enough weight to go around. I can pull start the Super M with mine if the grass is dry but if its wet forget it. Last winter we had a hard time pulling a plymouth acclaim out of the snow, had to get six people in the bed. It wasn't that I didn't have power just didn't have the weight to make traction. Also had the wrong width tires, they tire monkey said they were three sizes too wide. The new ones sure do stick to the road better.

Franz    Posted 10-10-2001 at 09:26:53       [Reply]  [Send Email]
DORF truck is also owned by Benz, as is Sterling. It's all one big truck company now, and they probly own a big chunk of the rock company too.

Old Sarge added    Posted 10-10-2001 at 08:19:07       [Reply]  [No Email]
Yes I have over 50 years experience with Cummins diesels. Started out driving a 220 with a 5 & 4 marriage box transmission in a bubble nose Autocar. Over the years they got bigger. The last one I drove/owned (with Associates Finance) was a Peterbilt 359S with an extended hood to accomidate a KT 600 Cummins. It had a deep reduction 15 speed box with a Double overdrive.

Dale (MI)    Posted 10-10-2001 at 09:15:50       [Reply]  [No Email]
I used to drive truck in the 80s when Cummins seemed to be the leader in the low RPM, fuel efficient engines. I learned to drive truck on the 13 speed Fuller Roadranger befor that, which I really enjoyed. It has been a long time though. So that was why I asked about Cummins. I saw an article in Farm Show also where somebody raved about his Dodge with a Cummins engine.
What did you need 15 gears for in the Peterbilt?
Thanks for the info!

Old Sarge added    Posted 10-10-2001 at 10:58:26       [Reply]  [Send Email]
At the time I bought it in 84 I was heavy hauling. You know, one of them TOO haulers. Too long, too wide, too heavy, too high for anybody else and they called us.

Then went to running Canada out of Salt Lake pulling a B Train. With my 4 axle tractor (total of 9 axles) I could load out of Manitoba, Sask, into BC (Vancouver port) with 166,000 total gross. Empty weight on the rig was 48,000. Thus I could haul a payload in Canada of 118,000. Now you know why the big engine and trans.

Nathan(GA)    Posted 10-10-2001 at 20:02:05       [Reply]  [No Email]
Old Sarge, That sounds like a hoss. I drove for a fellow one time that had a Pete with the big Cat and one of them 15 speeds. They'd walk off and leave me in the KW with a 3406 Cat. But I wouldn't hang with 'em if I could. We were always overloaded and ran at night.

I started out in a Mack 237 5 speed. Talk about slow but it was sho.

John Gray    Posted 04-28-2003 at 08:57:12       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I don't know if this is where I should ask this but I farm and just bought a Peterbuilt with a 13 speed, All I have had in the past were 5 with a 2 speed. Could you tell this old farm boy what the shift pattern is and how to use it? I hope to hear you so I can get it home. Signed beginer truck driver John

Dale (MI)    Posted 10-10-2001 at 12:17:00       [Reply]  [No Email]
I see. Here in Michigan we have the 11 axle "Michigan Trains" with a GVW of 180,000 lbs. I've never had the pleasure of driving one but thought about it when computer work was slow. Some people think using them for road construction is a self perpetuating situation.

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