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Old 09-25-2008, 04:35 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
Yep, I agree with "Safari 28". My truck has the 5.3 liter gas V8, (midsized GM) and 3.73:1 gears, and on our trip to Alaska and back this summer, we never drove on a hill that we could not easily maintain 50 MPH in second gear at 3000 RPM, and we went on virtually all the paved highways and mountain passes. And by "easily maintain", I mean with very light throttle...never floor boarding it. We ran 70-75 MPH on the American interstates and averaged 12.1 MPG on the entire 11,000+ mile trip. The gas engines are designed to turn the RPM, and must do so to get to the power band. Diesels on the other hand, cannot be forced to turn over about 2,200?

This truck is also my daily driver, I have no need for a 3/4 ton or the additional $11,000 +,- price.
Hopefully you have a better tranny than my '04 Avalanche paired with the 5.3L. It downshifted if you said the word "hill" and that's pulling a 21 ft bass boat... maybe 3000lbs. The slightest incline in the road had that tranny searching for more revs from the engine. Combined with a squishy suspension and a nervous transmission, it had to go when the AS entered the family. My folks had the same ride and towed a 23 foot deck boat and the same outcome. They have a Duramax now as well, and pull a 30ft Rinker Cruiser around and hardly know it's there.

Only 2200 rpm? It depends upon who's driving.

YouTube - 2004 chevy silverado 6.6L duramax turbo diesel 0-60
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Old 09-25-2008, 06:27 PM   #30
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Diesels on the other hand, cannot be forced to turn over about 2,200?
They will if you top Monarch Pass, your throttle return spring doesn't idle the motor down, you can't downshift for the downhill (with a full load on a big truck) and you come down it two gears too hot.

You'll be able to smell vinyl on your breath from sucking the seat up by the time you get to the bottom.
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Old 09-25-2008, 09:00 PM   #31
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Actually, when I'm towing the AS, I drive the truck in 3rd gear, and downshift manually when it's needed. I find it's a lot less annoying, feel I have more control of the situation, and also uses less fuel than having to press the accelerator down to the point where the transmission downshifts automatically.
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Old 09-29-2008, 08:18 AM   #32
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4.5 Liter '09 Diesel 'Burb

According to these folks TheDieselPage.com Feature Articles who are quite knowledgeable, GM's planning to introduce a 4.5 liter Duramax in the Suburban line in mid '09 as a '10 vehicle.

That could be an ideal tow vehicle for a lot of folks. In great measure, one does not need the 365 hp and 660 lb/ ft. of torque of the 6 liter Duramax to tow an Airstream. The suspension, heavy duty driveline, brakes and transmission are more important. But a smaller diesel with more torque than a gasser, if coupled to a good basic vehicle ought to get better mileage and tow like a dream. This could be very interesting!
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Old 09-29-2008, 10:02 AM   #33
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Although I'm out of the market, since I'm satisfied with the combination I have, I have some experience and opinions. I think a lot of what is said about downshifting, RPMs above 3000 (with gas engines), etc. is much ado about nothing. When I had GM gas burners with automatics I manually shifted them on steep grades, both up and down. I didn't like the feel of the downshift that came when I let the transmission do it on its own. It was probably doing no harm, I just didn't like it. All my experience was with '94 and older 5.7s. In twenty years of towing in mountain country with these gassers I never had transmission or engine trouble. I refused to tow in overdrive anywhere except where it was totally flat. Each truck had an auxillary transmission cooler.

Along the way I bought a 6.2L Chevy Heavy-Half with the 350 automatic transmission and towed a lot of miles with it. It was a gutless wonder, had some injector pump griefs, but I had zero problems with the engine or the transmission. I drove it pretty much the same as the gassers (except for lower RPMs).

I love my Cummins but given the price of fuel and the higher purchase price and more maintence costs than on my old twelve valve, I doubt I'd buy a diesel for my useage today.

Gene
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Old 09-29-2008, 11:15 AM   #34
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We first pulled our AS with a 96 3/4 ton Suburban with the 454. Plenty of power but terrible mileage. We got the 2008 SuperDuty with the diesel and there is absolutely not comparison as to pulling power and ease of towing. We average about 13 mpg at 65-70. It even rides better with our toy hooked up, very smooth.
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Old 09-29-2008, 10:29 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by genearnold View Post
Although I'm out of the market, since I'm satisfied with the combination I have, I have some experience and opinions. I think a lot of what is said about downshifting, RPMs above 3000 (with gas engines), etc. is much ado about nothing. When I had GM gas burners with automatics I manually shifted them on steep grades, both up and down. I didn't like the feel of the downshift that came when I let the transmission do it on its own. It was probably doing no harm, I just didn't like it. All my experience was with '94 and older 5.7s. In twenty years of towing in mountain country with these gassers I never had transmission or engine trouble. I refused to tow in overdrive anywhere except where it was totally flat. Each truck had an auxillary transmission cooler.

Along the way I bought a 6.2L Chevy Heavy-Half with the 350 automatic transmission and towed a lot of miles with it. It was a gutless wonder, had some injector pump griefs, but I had zero problems with the engine or the transmission. I drove it pretty much the same as the gassers (except for lower RPMs).

I love my Cummins but given the price of fuel and the higher purchase price and more maintence costs than on my old twelve valve, I doubt I'd buy a diesel for my useage today.

Gene
Just did the 20k oil change and this truck has had only 3 oil changes since new. Total cost for all maint since new-----98.00. Since I lease, I have all oil changes done at the Ford dealer. I asked the technician to really look her over today to see if anything looked abused or overheated. His comments. All looks perfect. Please understand this truck has towed 18k miles a 28 safari in mostly western states. I rest my case.
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Old 09-29-2008, 11:16 PM   #36
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Safari 28, Your truck will give you years of service the way you are using it. Modern engines are ultra reliable. I love my diesel but that is cause I bought it cheep and it tows great without a high dollar hitch. My old 7.3 has almost 300K, and uses no oil.
When we were testing the F150 5.4 at APG we towed at max GVW and ran a 6% 12 mile grade from the Colorado River to the top of Union pass turned around again & again. In the summer the ambiant temps at the river are 120+ .Those moters are amazing.
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Old 10-04-2008, 10:30 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by safari 28 View Post
Just did the 20k oil change and this truck has had only 3 oil changes since new. Total cost for all maint since new-----98.00. Since I lease, I have all oil changes done at the Ford dealer. I asked the technician to really look her over today to see if anything looked abused or overheated. His comments. All looks perfect. Please understand this truck has towed 18k miles a 28 safari in mostly western states. I rest my case.
Safari,

You say you lease your truck. 20k in the first year? I've seen 10k, 12k and 15k mile per year leases. What program are you on?

I've put over 20k in less than a year on my Duramax. Leasing is not an option due to high mileage for us.

yakman
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Old 10-04-2008, 10:46 PM   #38
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Actually had it a little over a year. You just pay more / month on a lease for the miles you need. Mine is a 20k/year lease, I have my maxima on a 18k/year and it is a 3 year and the truck is 2 year obligation. It all depends on what you want. Leasing is a funny thing, I tend to go with the best assisted lease at the time. In a nutshell when sales are slow on certain models they build up the residual and the monthly payments are lower. That is why I was willing to go with any truck that would do the job. Ford had the lowest payments at the time. Case in point, a dodge was over 175/month more, the chevy was 125/month more/ the toyota was 125/month more. Ford wanted the business. A chevy diesel 3/4 ton was 230/ month more. So, no emotion here, I wanted a 10k pound tow capacity( or close) and they all had to compete. Icing on the cake is the ford is a lariat and looks like a luxury suv inside, console shifter like the toyota was the clincher.
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Old 11-01-2008, 08:53 AM   #39
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biggest difference i see between gas and diesel, is the diesel is designed to be worked.met a guy at the flying j in virginia who had a 12 v cummins that he towed boats with up and down the whole east coast with.these were heavy boats minimum tri axle trailers.i thought he was kidding me when he said he just turned it all the way around and had 4000 miles on the truck.that is 1,004,000.he had no mods except a larger fuel plate,and used a bypass filter with regular oil changes every 15k.this truck worked hard every day of its life. i have a psd because my brother is a ford tech,although i am generally not brand loyal.he put it to me another way.he told me dont baby your diesel,"drive it like you stole it".he doesnt give me the same advice on a gasser.with my truck when i am towing i always use tow/ haul mode,and if i am pulling a hill and i drop under 65mph the tranny will drop down a gear.i drive what ever the speed limit is as long as the weather permits.if somebody is doing 55mph in a 70 mph zone im not afraid to put the hammer down to get around them.this truck always runs better after a day of pulling,because this is what it was designed for.i dont tailgate,so i let the transmission do what it was designed to do with the engine braking.best mpg advice is just to keep the load moving and not to have alot of stops and starts.unloaded if i want to drive 55mph this truck gets just north of 23 mpg.of course it is so much fun to drive i cant help spooling the turbo up.if my brother takes over at the helm,this truck feels more like a rocket ship.
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Old 11-08-2008, 07:26 PM   #40
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There is a guy in Mich. He was on the news. Gas motor (Ford) over a million miles.
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