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Old 03-19-2008, 01:47 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnie's Mate
One of the factors in my "25 foot" rule of thumb is the length of the trailer vs. the length of the truck....
Again - you've made some excellent points.

My F-150 has the longest available wheel base in it's class 144" (at least I think it's the longest available). Going to an F-250 SuperCab.with the same 5.4L V8 and axel ratio only gives me an extra 100 pounds of towing capacity. Jumping to the 6.8L V10 buys me 3200# more towing capacity but cuts my gas milage too.

There is no possible way that I could tow extra toys like a golf cart (although it would be cool to be able to do that) Ft Wilderness with a golf cart sounds like a LOT of fun!!! If I get to that point, then for sure I'd be making a trip to the Ford dealer
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Old 03-19-2008, 02:19 PM   #22
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Molly, you and Ben need to go out and buy 2 new trucks (2008's) so you can reply more accurately to this post!

I have never known anyone else that had a better opportunity to reply to the Ford vs. GM debate...that was great!

kudos your way!

Bill
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Old 03-19-2008, 02:47 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnie's Mate
Wow. I really didn't realize how long winded I was.
M M, That was a serious post!!! Wow.
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Old 03-19-2008, 03:15 PM   #24
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Bill,

Thanks...it is a unique thing to have both brands of diesels at home, and they're both such good trucks that we wouldn't have a problem with an '08 of either variety. We each had a Ford diesel for a while, but when it came time to replace Ben's, GM's 0% financing and 100K-mile warranty on a really good truck swayed him toward the GMC. Plus, knowing Ford was leaving the 6.0 behind and moving to the 6.4L made us leary of the first model year for the new motor.

In the same vein, I think it comes down to your personal preferences in terms of choosing one over the other, as they really are both good trucks, and our diesel trucks (these are numbers 5 and 6 respectively) have almost always been good, capable vehicles that are often (knock on wood) more trouble-free than our cars.

When we're going to run into town for something, we take the GMC. When we're going on a trip with one of the Airstreams, we take the Ford. But it comes down more to the Ford having a topper and the GMC not having one than anything else, although we both think the GMC is more comfortable but prefer the Ford for towing with its mirrors, visibility, taller ride height, and integrated brake control.

I can't speak for 2008s, but I think it comes down to the GM trucks having a softer ride and more proven drivetrain and the Fords having a higher stance and better interior build quality and materials but an evolving drivetrain with fewer proven miles behind it. We wouldn't hesitate to take either cross-country right now with any of our trailers, and we wouldn't hesitate to buy either a Ford or GM new. And either will be up to the task of towing any Airstream.
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Old 03-20-2008, 01:40 AM   #25
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Ford F250 10+K miles towing...

Hi,

Last Thursday we completed a trip that started November 4. We took delivery of our 2008 F250 FX4 (4x4) 6.4 liter diesel with manual transmission October 15. We managed to put 800 miles on it prior to our departure.

We drove from Medford, Oregon to Colonial Airstream in New Jersey in 6 days to collect our new 30' Classic.

From the time of purchase to our arrival in New Jersey we covered 4097 miles and averaged 16.22 MPG. In Nevada we drove at 70 to 75 MPH. In Wyoming we drove at 75 to 80. FWIW, these are legal posted speeds in these states. In the remaining states we drove 65 to 75 MPH.

The absolute best we have gotten in 14,775 miles is 19.6 MPG from Homestead, Florida to Key West and back. Note that the posted speeds on this road are 45 with a short stretch at 55 MPH.

All of the above is just the two of us in the truck, but all of our gear in the bed of the truck. We have a Leer cap on the truck. The truck front axle weighs 5320 lbs. and the rear axle weight 5100 lbs. Ya, we hauled all of our stuff with us to New Jersey and then loaded the trailer. The weight here is AFTER the stuff was moved into the trailer. It was heavier prior to that.

You have probably already figured out that we hauled the trailer from New Jersey to Florida. From there we went west to San Diego and north to Medford Oregon; roughly 10,000 miles with the 8.800 lb. trailer behind us.

The worst mileage we got was going from St. Augustine, Florida to Pensacola, Florida to attend the Can Opener. 9.4 MPG. I attribute this to the severe head wind we encountered. During the course of our trip we estimate that headwinds cost us 2 MPG. The best we got was 15.4 on mostly flat land with a strong tail wind.

Having said this, we were very lucky weather wise. We did not encounter a lot of bad weather, unless you want to count the snow on the last day of our return going over a 5,100 foot pass between Klamath Falls and Medford.

In Nevada we went over some higher passes but until we encountered the 4,000 foot pass going from Yuma to San Diego we were only in what we here in the west call hills.

The best mileage we got during out trip while towing was 15.4 MPG. Our average towing the trailer was 11.0.

Please note that these mileage figures are calculated by recording the mileage and fuel at each purchase. The "lie-o-meter" in the vehicle is very much something that will not give accurate results.

As for the noise level in the cab. My father in laws' 1989 Beaver Motor Coach (rear diesel pusher) is much louder at the drivers seat. When I took him for a ride he was amazed at how quit the truck is.Also, there is not one spot of soot on my exhaust. So, this diesel is much more friendly to the environment; but, at a cost - reduced fuel mileage.

If we did not have four wheel drive we would still be in a camp ground in Georgia. There was just enough of an incline in our camp space that the rear wheels just spun in the gravel and soft earth when it was time to depart. It was dry and there was not any sign of moisture in the soil that was dug up. We encountered this several times on our trip. I bought a four wheel drive just for this reason and am very happy I did.

We also got the Sirius satellite radio option in both the truck and Classic and are very happy we did. Especially when in Big Bend National Park and other such remote places. The solar system kept our batteries fully charged and the only time we ran our generator was to exercise it to keep the battery charged. It should be noted that we like to boondock and we do so often.

The down side of the truck is, IMNSHO, the manual gear box. There needs to be at least two more gears; one between 2nd and 3rd and another between 4th and 5th. This became an issue when we started towing in the mountains. Please note that this means 6% or grater grades. When starting from a stop on such a grade the shift from 2nd to 3rd really taxes the drive train. The same conditions cause similar issues when traveling at speed. We wind up in 5th gear at 50 MPH and 2,000 RPM on freeways many times if it is more than 6% and longer than a half mile. 6th gear causes the RPM to drop too much in these conditions. I am giving serious consideration to installing an over/under transmission that will solve this issue very nicely. The torque output of the engine is awesome; it will pull stumps.

I don't know if this will provide any info that will help with your decision or not. Good luck!!!

Jim
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Old 03-20-2008, 07:16 AM   #26
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Wow!!! and Thank You very much!

You are all terrific, knowledeable, welcoming, generous and kind, and we are SO very grateful!

Thank you for all for the encouragement, the links, the real world comparisons and the sharing of recent experience with exactly the year and engine we are considering. Thank you so much!!! This is all so very helpful to us as we make such a huge decision and purchase.

We were told that by purchasing an AS we were not just buying a trailer but we were joining a wonderful community, and you here in the forums have certainly proven that to be true

With gratitude and appreciation,
Cat and the guys


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Old 03-20-2008, 07:19 AM   #27
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cat, you are so right-lot's o good Folk here! (And good info)

norsea, great post, and great trip.
I think you will find, as we did and many others, that your mpg will improve with a few more miles on the truck. Ironicaly, many of todays automatics get better mpg than their standard shift brethren. I know I would much rather stick the Alli in "D" and go...I'll keep my shiftin' to 2 wheels...

4wd is mandatory for those of us in snow country...can't see buying a truck without.

Thanx for the update, sounds like you've got a great setup.

Stream on,
Bill
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Old 03-20-2008, 02:10 PM   #28
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thanks for the great post Norsea. It was great to have you at the Can Opener and hope you will be able to make it again next year.
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Old 03-20-2008, 03:32 PM   #29
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Hey Cat, one thing nobody addressed yet; ton vs 1 ton. When towing TTs there really is no advantage to going with a 1 ton. The only advantage to a 1 ton is payload, not tow capacity. Sometimes you even lose tow capacity by moving to a 1 ton. Unless you have specific requirements; golf cart in the bed, possibility of a truck camper in the future, anvil collecting as favorite hobby, etc you will be fine with the ton.

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Old 03-20-2008, 03:44 PM   #30
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As someone who carries a golf cart in the bed of my truck while towing, you don't need a 1 ton for that. The golf cart weighs in right at 1,000 LBS. You can carry it in the bed of a 1/2, but if you are going to tow, I'd recommend the 3/4 ton. Most hitch set ups can't or aren't set up to distribute enough of the tongue weight to the front axle to level the truck and trailer with the golf cart in the bed. The same holds true for some of the larger motorcycles and ATVs.

The only time I can see a need for a one ton truck is, as you say, for a slide in camper or for a 5th wheel or similar goose neck trailer that puts a lot of weight in the bed of the truck. Airstream and Argosy made a few 5th wheel trailers several years back, but other than those, you really don't need a one ton to tow anything that Airstream makes or has made.
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Old 03-21-2008, 12:40 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillTex
cat, you are so right-lot's o good Folk here! (And good info)

norsea, great post, and great trip.

<SNIPPY>

Thanx for the update, sounds like you've got a great setup.

Stream on,
Bill
Thanks Bill,

Now, if we can get our web site updated we can share our adventure. That activity, however, is way down on the priority list at the minute. We are in the first week of a two month binge of working on the truck getting a flatbed installed so we can take our enduro sidecar with us on our future adventures. And the sidecar is also getting lots of attention - a complete rewire of the electrical system.

We hope to depart for Alaska 15 May. Time will tell.

Jim
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Old 03-21-2008, 07:03 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by norsea
Thanks Bill,

Now, if we can get our web site updated we can share our adventure. That activity, however, is way down on the priority list at the minute. We are in the first week of a two month binge of working on the truck getting a flatbed installed so we can take our enduro sidecar with us on our future adventures. And the sidecar is also getting lots of attention - a complete rewire of the electrical system.

We hope to depart for Alaska 15 May. Time will tell.

Jim
Yes, post pix/links when you can-we love a good adventure!

Bill
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