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Old 10-04-2015, 07:16 PM   #43
1987 Avion 34W owner
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Vintage Kin Owner
Good Ol' , USA
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Originally Posted by ridgewalker View Post
Just to throw a little salt, I had a 1999 F250 7.3 diesel ext cab 4x4. We towed a 29' HitchHiker II for several years until I tired of the stress of a fifth wheel (I95 Maine to Florida will do that).
Now we have an AS 20' we tow with a 2012 F350 gasser 4x4 cc...oh yes and we carry a Northern Lite 8'11" cabover camper at the same time as the guest house. I don't miss looking for diesel, nor finding a place to get oil changed at a ridiculous cost.
We put a measly 186,000 miles on the diesel at 10 mpg towing the fifth wheel, and 17-18 mpg empty and 12-13 mpg with a camper and towing the AS. Oh and $100-130 for an oil change. The gasser costs $30 for an oil change but only gets 15-16 mpg empty, 11-12 mpg with camper and 10-11 mpg with camper and towing.

Just thought you might want to see my numbers. We're happy with our choice for our situation.
I do my own regular maintenance, so those are minimal compared to the prices you quoted. I also do not use Rotella or any other name brand oil. I use Tractor Supply's 15W-40, and it does well and has tested very good per Blackstone. Oil changes are no big deal, there's just more of it!

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Old 10-04-2015, 07:58 PM   #44
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2017 30' Classic
1969 31' Sovereign
Kerrville , Texas
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 159
News Flash!

2017 F-250's to F-450's (out in Nov 2016) will be all aluminum body (thicker than F-150 body panels) and up to 400 lbs lighter than same type vehicle with improved towing capacity and trailer towing weight capacity.

Available with Eco-Boost, Diesel AND the V10 power plants!

Might consider that in the mix.

Our two 2015's (150 gas & 250 diesel) pull the 28' Cloud like silk. The '12 F-350 runs too fast and must remind ourselves to slow down so the AS wheels will touch the ground. (More power than is needed.)

MPG? After the 5000 mile break in period on either fueled engine, mid teens to lower twenties is not uncommon.

Pitch in a generator, extra tire, water, gen-set fuel, chairs, stuff and a case of wine and the TV won't know the difference.

Happy Trails!

Just saying.

Happy Trails.

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Old 10-04-2015, 09:11 PM   #45
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2015 27' Flying Cloud
Washington , Washington, D.C.
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 223
In my 10-month quest for a TV for my new FC 27, I drove nearly everything. I ended up with a hard to find Sierra 1500 SLT crew cab with the 6.2 engine and the max tow package. The rated payload (per the door sticker) is 1960 lbs., about 100 lbs less than a Ram 2500 crew with the Cummins diesel. Remember, with a 3/4 ton, your tow vehicle alone is going to weigh 1500 lbs. more than a half ton.
You asked about gas 3/4 tons: I drove the Chevy, which felt underpowered even empty, with the 4:10 rear end. The Ram with the 6.4 hemi (also with the 4:10) felt as strong as the same truck with the Cummins, just driving around. I did not drive the F-250, because the rear floor area is obstructed with bins--and that's where my big dog rides. The extra mass of the 3/4 tons as opposed to the half tons is palpable.
You can get a Chevy/GMC or Ford 1/2 ton in a crew with about a 2000 lb. rated payload. My truck achieved up to 23 mpg empty @65 mph driving East from Colorado, where I bought it. Pulling my trailer around in the Appalachians in West Virginia, I've never exceeded 3500 rpm and then only once. Usually I'm running in the low 2000s. An 8-speed transmission is a wonder. Fuel economy towing was around 12 mpg. My GMC rides a little more firm, empty, than other GM 1/2 tons without the max tow package, which supplies a different rear axle (larger ring gear) and stiffer rear suspension.
If I felt I needed the extra payload of a 3/4, I'd go with the Ram, based on my test drive. However, tested fuel economy with the 6.4 engine is atrocious (there's all that weight you're lugging around). The Cummins engine is powerful but not subtle. You like the Big Rig sound and rumble--you got it. Once it's warmed up, the GM Duramax is a lot quieter and is more than equal to the job of towing an AS. On the used market, only in the last year or two did Ford fit a decent exhaust brake on the Powerstroke. The previous 6.0 and 6.4 Powerstrokes have major design flaws. The Cummins before 2013 did not use urea injection (DEF). These engines have worse fuel economy than the newer ones (the old 5.9s were better still, but not emission controlled). Used Chevy/GMC 3/4 tons with the Duramax are pretty good, but prior to this years re-design, the interiors and instrumentation are pretty basic.
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Old 10-05-2015, 05:44 AM   #46
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2014 30' Flying Cloud
Moorestown , New Jersey
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TV for AS trailer


We use a 2015 Yukon XL Denali with 6.2 Lt - 8 speed, and 3.25 trans.
It pulls a 30" Flying Cloud without a problem here in the East ( small mountains). I get 11 mpg towing, and 19.5-22.5 without.
I use the truck everyday. It is more expensive that an PU truck but does the job at interstate speed without an issue.
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Old 10-05-2015, 07:26 AM   #47
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Greenwood , Mississippi
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Originally Posted by Msmoto View Post
I pull with a diesel, now with 100,000 miles....and it will go up any hill as fast as I like. Pulling at between 60 - 70 mph, as I allow the run downhill to have momentum for the uphill in hilly country, usually about 62- 65 mph on the flat, I get from 12 - 14 mpg. Not towing, in town I get 16+, on the road about 20+ mpg.

If, I were to purchase a gasoline engine, the Toyota Tundra with a V-8 or the Dodge with a big Hemi V-8. Probably poor mpg, but very nice trucks.

Oh, I do drive my 22' long Dodge around town, parking being the biggest issue.

The advantage for towing of the huge torque with diesel is IMO such a comfort, especially if one does long trips (>1000 miles each way) I do regularly. And, as I have a 60 gallon auxiliary fuel tank in the bed, I can cruise for a long time, about 1,000 miles, finding the least expensive fuel. With gasoline, no auxiliary tank is possible.
The Tundra only comes with 2 engine options, 1 transmission option, and 1 rear end gear option.
You can choose a 300+ hp and 300+ ft. lbs. of torque 4.6 V8 or a 381 hp/401 ft. lbs. of torque 5.7 V8. Either way you get the same 6 speed transmission and 4:30 rear end gears. I don't know about options on the Ram. You may still have only 2 engine options and 1 transmission, but maybe there are more rear end gear choices.
Still love my Tundra- not shopping-
2013 Classic 30 Limited
2007 Silver Toyota Tundra Crew Max Limited 5.7 iForce
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Old 10-05-2015, 07:33 AM   #48
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1991 29' Excella
Rockwood , Ontario
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 23
3/4 t

I am so grateful for all thoughts and advice. I most likely will look at the GMC/Chevy 2500HD new, and the new 2017 F250 to see the new design and improvements over my current F150 (2010).

Since this truck will be used as the tow vehicle and for some hauling of stuff occasionally and for really bad winter days, I think a gas engine is the best choice. Diesel's were meant to be driven and my current truck has 65,000 miles on it after 5 years.

Looking forward to trying out the new trucks. Just wondering I currently have a Hensley hitch on the A/S and was wondering if the new new truck being a 3/4t will need a new connecting bar due to height difference, if any from the F150?
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Old 10-05-2015, 09:51 AM   #49
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2004 25' International CCD
morgan hill , California
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I use a 2006 Dodge 2500 short bed with the the Cummings diesel engine. Love it. Currently at 96,000 miles. I use it for my 21' Arima and the Airstream. Before the 25' Airstream I had a 31' Featherlite SURV and the SuperGlide hitch. Both trailers were pulled for several 5,000 mile trips and on the flat ground you did not know they were there. Both did the 500 mile round trip to Santa Barbara twice a month. We sold the Featherlite and then used the Airstream since then for 2 of the 4 years we went to SB. I usually get 17-18 around the town and up to 20-23 on open highways.
I usually get very good mileage with a trailer unless going up steep hills or unfriendly winds. Usually 15-16 mpg while trailering.
Jake Brake, onboard compressor, front winch, lots of lights, a Spitz Lift Boom and extra lights make a nice truck.
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Old 10-05-2015, 12:30 PM   #50
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Greenwood , Mississippi
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I saw a Ram 1500 Ecodiesel today for the first time-

Sent from my iPhone using Airstream Forums
2013 Classic 30 Limited
2007 Silver Toyota Tundra Crew Max Limited 5.7 iForce
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Old 10-05-2015, 12:46 PM   #51
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2010 30' Flying Cloud
Mocksville , North Carolina
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Originally Posted by BW1 View Post
Time to get a new truck... have been using my F150 for 3 years now and after many trips through steep grades, the truck is way overworked. Now before you jump all over me, I had the TRUCK FIRST, then the Airstream .

Looking at all 3 makers in the 3/4 ton, I don't really want a diesel since we only pull for about 5 weeks a year, then it is just a truck for regular stuff.

Any comments about V8 power as well as favourable gas mileage from the big three based on your experiences would be helpful.

Towing a '91 Excella 29ft.

Can't wait to weigh out the outcome

I recently purchased a new (to me anyway) truck and went though the same thought process. I ended up deciding on the diesel simply because I love the idea of the exhaust brake and I have to admit it is wonderful to have when towing. I love the new Chevrolets, but I think the V8 gas engine they use in the 3/4 pickups is just underpowered. Adding a supercharger could fix that problem though... . The newly upgraded 6.4 Hemi for the Ram is currently the most powerful gas engine offered in a 3/4 ton. I heard someone say the new F250 (2017 model) may offer the eco boost gas turbo engine which could make an interesting tow truck if you are willing to wait a year though. Personally, I just decided I wanted the torque and exhaust brake that only the diesel offered, but any 3/4 ton should pull any sized airstream, plus handle all your cargo, with no problems.

For full disclosure, I should probably admit I went with the Ram 2500 diesel, but had money not been a consideration I would have probably chosen the new for 2015 Silverado.
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Old 10-05-2015, 01:06 PM   #52
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Thousand Oaks , California
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Questions on your Ram eco diesel

Hi Joe,

I'm considering purchasing a Ram eco diesel for a tow vehicle, with a similar size AS. Do you happen to know the axle ratio (3.92 or 3.55) on your Dodge? Also, what kind of mileage do you get when towing, and how do you like it?
Appreciate the info,
Carl Cornils
Originally Posted by Mrjkq View Post
I guess I'm a diesel head also. I've pulled with a GMC duramax, Ford power stroke & now a Ram eco diesel. Any 3/4 ton truck will support your effort, big time, & do it well but you going to miss out on the diesel envy from all your friends
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Old 10-06-2015, 08:35 AM   #53
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2016 16' Sport
oriental , North Carolina
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Dodge ECO diesel

Carl, I have a ECO diesel. I love it. Its the second one in 1 1/2 years. I only tow a small airstream 3500 lbs. plus about 6 or 700 lbs. of camping stuff in the bed. I get 26 mpg. overall not towing and 22 towing. Setting the cruise control at 55 not towing I get 32 to 34 mpg. on the highway driving steady long distance. Best truck I ever owned. Cliff
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Old 10-06-2015, 08:36 AM   #54
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2016 16' Sport
oriental , North Carolina
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ECO diesel

Carl, rear end is 3:55

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