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Old 09-22-2016, 07:20 PM   #57
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My 2500 5.9 Cummins is five speed manual. I heard various recommendations regarding the use of an exhaust brake for travel in the mountains. What has been the experience of people on this forum? Is it worth retrofitting an exhaust brake onto an older vehicle with a manual, or is this only a benefit when using automatics?
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Old 09-22-2016, 07:54 PM   #58
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Here is a not so great analogy about compromise.

My friend and is wife both have BMWs

Another friend and his wife both have Mustangs

Yet another friend and his wife both have Mini Vans.

I told them it was like having a tool box with only two hammers in it. Sometimes, you are going to want a saw, or a wrench, or a screw driver.

You have one kind of car to impress the ladies
You have one kind of car to impress your friends
You have one kind of car if you have a big family
You have one kind of car if you can't afford gas
You have one kind of car if you love speeding tickets
You have a truck if you have to carry stuff

Why can't a find a vehicle that will do all of those things.

Well you canů.It just won't do any of those things very well.

I tried hammering in a nail with my saw. The doctor thought I was an idiot
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Old 09-22-2016, 09:48 PM   #59
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ej,
I have an 05 2500 Dodge with the Cummins/6 spd. Purchased it solely on the drivetrain because in 05 and earlier in the Dodge line they only had MOPAR/Jacobs engine brakes for stick trucks. Don't know if they didn't have things worked out to allow the brake to coexist with the auto but that was then. If memory serves, they opened up the catalog in late 05 or 06 for a Jacobs/automatic system. Must have got the bugs worked out.

I had the Jacobs installed 6 months after I purchased the truck. Installed at the dealership with a 3 year warranty from Dodge. It was set up for the trucks, factory connectors, oem parts to replace the assembly line parts that were removed.

I have a 31' Classic and a 10,000# 20' car trailer that follow behind the Dodge. We have some pretty descent hills in PA...steep and long... and it is a pleasure to descend them with the exhaust brake. At the top of the hill I downshift to 5th or if it a real steep grade scrub off a little speed and set it in 4th. I tow the Airstream with a Hensley and the car trailer has the sway bar set-up on it but I have never used the bars. My brake controller is a Prodigy.

I would recommend a Jacob brake as it is as direct fit as you can get. There are other brakes out there but that is my story.

One thing..watch the use of the engine brake on wet roads. Especially if your tires have worn down some. Good luck with your decision. Any questions, drop me a note.
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Old 09-22-2016, 10:11 PM   #60
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... and it is a pleasure to descend them with the exhaust brake. At the top of the hill I downshift to 5th or if it a real steep grade scrub off a little speed and set it in 4th.
Newbie here with a question about engine braking. Since the trailer brakes aren't activated, isn't the hitch in compression instead of tension? How might this affect handling?
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Old 09-23-2016, 03:30 AM   #61
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Newbie here with a question about engine braking. Since the trailer brakes aren't activated, isn't the hitch in compression instead of tension? How might this affect handling?
On dry roads you should be fine. Just watch curves and especially wet or slick roads. You'll want to use your brakes for those so the tires don't lose traction. Even if the road is straight.
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Old 09-23-2016, 04:15 AM   #62
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As far as big trucks being hard to park, I also had a Mitsubishi Eclypse for years. Couldn't get that thing in a parking space straight any better than the one ton. Sold the mits, kept the truck. If you can't park, you can't park. I need lots of space.
My 3/4 ton and half ton had the same body style. Neither was any more or less difficult to park than the other. Trick I learned was to always back in. I got real good at backing up; wouldn't let my kids drive until they could demonstrate backing up with mirrors only. (Also required them to demonstrate that they could merge at freeway speed without making anyone move over).
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Old 09-23-2016, 09:27 AM   #63
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My 2500 5.9 Cummins is five speed manual. I heard various recommendations regarding the use of an exhaust brake for travel in the mountains. What has been the experience of people on this forum? Is it worth retrofitting an exhaust brake onto an older vehicle with a manual, or is this only a benefit when using automatics?
Yes it is absolutely worth the effort and expense to have an older diesel pickup retrofitted with an exhaust brake. The exhaust brake helps you to control the load behind the truck on while descending steep grades. The drive is much safer when the vehicle can control the load. I have the integrated exhaust brake on my truck and it works fabulously!

To answer the OP question:
I would have no trouble driving my truck daily but I would rather sacrifice my econobox car (hate it) to the winter salt when I drive to work. The truck gets used after work for hauling duties, recreation duties, traveling duties (it is comfortable) and driving to church on Sunday because I like it!
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Old 09-23-2016, 10:40 AM   #64
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We are scheduled to pick up our Flying Cloud 28A next Friday. I currently have a 2011 GMC Sierra 1500 with the 6.2 motor. I think I will have plenty of motor, but the suspension will be within a couple hundred pounds of gvwr. I really enjoy driving the truck, but my daily driver is a Yamaha Tenere. I only use the truck in bad weather or towing. We are considering A GMC Savana 3/4 or 1 ton van as a new tow vehicle, but I doubt I would enjoy driving it as much as the Sierra pickup.
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Old 09-23-2016, 10:42 AM   #65
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I would try towing with the truck before trading it.
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Old 09-25-2016, 08:06 PM   #66
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Newbie here with a question about engine braking. Since the trailer brakes aren't activated, isn't the hitch in compression instead of tension? How might this affect handling?

That's the problem. The Dodge Upfitter Guide only recommends an EB when the trailer exceeds 10,000-lbs. I've driven these commercially and with a 20K trailer on the back it is well worth having. But that's in a gooseneck configuration. And loads that didn't catch much wind.

Being passed on the downslope by big trucks, or hitting a crosswind, is what screws things up for conventional hitched travel trailers. Vulnerability is at its highest. One NEEDS to be using the servic brake and have the controller adjusted to have the TT brakes at a higher total percentage of available pressure.

A 10 or 11k pound AS doesnt "justify" an EB. Speed on the descent and transmission gear choice are where it's at for making an easy descent.

If anything, disc brakes on the TT pay for themselves in this. Antilock only makes that better.
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Old 09-26-2016, 08:30 AM   #67
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That's the problem. The Dodge Upfitter Guide only recommends an EB when the trailer exceeds 10,000-lbs. I've driven these commercially and with a 20K trailer on the back it is well worth having. But that's in a gooseneck configuration. And loads that didn't catch much wind.

Being passed on the downslope by big trucks, or hitting a crosswind, is what screws things up for conventional hitched travel trailers. Vulnerability is at its highest. One NEEDS to be using the servic brake and have the controller adjusted to have the TT brakes at a higher total percentage of available pressure.

A 10 or 11k pound AS doesnt "justify" an EB. Speed on the descent and transmission gear choice are where it's at for making an easy descent.

If anything, disc brakes on the TT pay for themselves in this. Antilock only makes that better.
Your comments make a lot sense.
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Old 09-26-2016, 08:41 AM   #68
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GMC Canyon/Chevy Colorado diesels have exhaust brakes and are rated to tow around 7500#. Apparently, exhaust brake is not something meant only for super heavy loads, and moderate loads can benefit from it as well.
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Old 09-26-2016, 02:11 PM   #69
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GMC Canyon/Chevy Colorado diesels have exhaust brakes and are rated to tow around 7500#. Apparently, exhaust brake is not something meant only for super heavy loads, and moderate loads can benefit from it as well.

You missed the part about the hitch being in compression?

Vehicle size, type or engine is irrelevant.
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Old 09-26-2016, 02:52 PM   #70
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You missed the part about the hitch being in compression?

Vehicle size, type or engine is irrelevant.
I trust the GM engineers and am sure all your concerns are taken into account by them.
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