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Old 03-11-2010, 06:03 PM   #1
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1986 25' Sovereign
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To Cummins or Not to Cummins?? Help!! On the brink!

I'm really, really close to buying this one...it just doesn't have 4 wheel drive.

Will I regret it???!!!!

Great price for a sub 100k Cummins.

Help me Forum!!!

Cars for Sale: 2003 Dodge Ram 2500 Truck 2WD Quad Cab in Sugar Hill, GA 30518: Truck Details - 267759606 - AutoTrader.com
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:37 PM   #2
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I've had good luck with my '06 CTD 2wd. The only 2 times i've wished for 4x4 were 1) on a grassy slope, non-towing (pulled it out with a 4 wheeler) and 2) trying to back up a muddy, snow covered drive and get a Hensley lined up.
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:50 PM   #3
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I sure love mine! I pull a 34 foot triple axle loaded to the gills and I've never hit a hill I couldn't accelerate up; Great Smokey Mountains included. I have a 2004 with the heavier of the two automatics they offered that year. It's 305hp 555 ft-lbs from the factory and I've not modified it. I'm not sure if the 2003 is the same or not...mine is technically a 2004 1/2 and I'm not sure what they changed.

I get about 11mpg towing in the mountains, 13mpg on the flats, and 19mpg empty. I used to get 21mpg empty, but when they changed the diesel fuel formulation in 2007, I lost 2 mpg.

My dad's buddy has owned the Cummins powered Dodge's since they first came out in 1989. He's put over 250,000 miles on each one before he sold it, and never had any trouble with any of them. Dad bought a '99 new and he's never had a bit of trouble with it. All I've done to mine is change the oil.

If you can get a good deal on it, I'd say go for it. It's barely broken in at that mileage.

One thing's for sure....it'll pull any Airstream ever made without thinking twice. You could probably hook up two of them

see ya on the road,
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:53 PM   #4
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1986 25' Sovereign
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Cool! I'm picking it up tomorrow morning and taking it to my diesel mechanic dude to look at. I ran the carfax and its a nice, clean FL truck that actually has some nice Dealer Service records available. This is starting to look like a nice buy. We'll see...
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:00 PM   #5
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Big John:

I have a 2005 CTD 2wd. I love it. I have not been in a situation where I needed it. Plus I have friends who have 4wd and can tow me out. We live in snow country and I load 400 lbs of sand in the back during the winter.

Last year when I was stuck in very wet grass the 4 wd trucks were also stuck. We all needed to be towed out.

I specifically chose the 2wd drive over the 4wd. The 2005 model year 2wd has rack and pinon steering whereas the 4wd is ball joint. The 2wd is also lower which was a consideration for our garage. The 4wd adds more weight. It's a personal choice.

I love the Cummings and would have bought whatever truck company was manufacturing a 3/4 ton pickup with the Cummings. Another consideration is my wife can] get migrane headaches from certain smells. I was concerned about buying a diesel and how she would handle it. We have had no smell issues with the Cummins.

When I replace this truck, my next one will again have a Cummins in it.

Good luck in whatever you choose.
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:50 PM   #6
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2007 30' Classic S/O
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Big John,

The test drive will tell a lot. I'm a fan of the inline 6 idea, just open the hood and see how much real estate exisits in there, then possibly compare to Ford or GM, they are PACKED. I have done all of my maintance on my two trucks so far. If you do your own work don't be scared, it's kinda fun, has it's own rewards.

For a forum, check into www.tdr1.com dedicated to the Dodge Cummins, has a bunch of guru's. Look into the towing and hauling sub-forum for towing related questions.

Learn the basics, just like I'm learning my AS. There is a lot of help available on TDR.

Good luck.
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Old 03-11-2010, 09:26 PM   #7
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wait 2 months....

The 2011 Ford Super Duty Trucks - Coming Spring 2010 | The Official Site of Ford Super Duty Trucks

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Old 03-12-2010, 06:54 AM   #8
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i like all diesels for towing.cummins is a great engine.i am not that brand loyal,but i drive fords because my brother is a ford tech.one thing i would check out besides only the engine is the truck itself.what is the level of comfort?what trans and rear goes with it.the low end torque of the cummins is rough on the rest of the drive train.on older dodges pre 6.7 litre some years had lots of tranny problems.
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Old 03-12-2010, 07:38 AM   #9
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I bought my Dodge 2500 with Cummins in late 98. *It was the first 99 the dealer delivered.
11 years and 548,000 miles later I can report good reliable service and have no plans to replace it in the near future.
I have seen others with over a million miles without an engine teardown.
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Old 03-12-2010, 09:12 AM   #10
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I would not sell my Cummins unless I could buy another one!
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Old 03-12-2010, 10:47 AM   #11
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Another bonus to consider is it's a pre-emission 5.9! Better mileage, less "plumbing". I've got a 2007 (last of the 5.9's) with almost 100,000 miles on it and it's been the most trouble free vehicle I've ever owned.
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Old 03-12-2010, 10:58 AM   #12
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I just added an aftermarket built in screen in mine which includes the radio, navigation, back up camera, phone bluetooth, mp3 etc
The screen is fairly large so I can clearly back straight into my Hensley without any guidance!
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Old 03-12-2010, 07:36 PM   #13
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Ford build a good looking truck and a lot of them. The '03 that Big John is looking at is pre-emission, solid 5.9L power.

One thing that Ford and even GM has done with their compression ignition power plants is flip flop.

Ford 6.9L, 7.3L w/o T, w/T IDI, DI, 6.0L almost ruined the blue oval's strong reputation, my neighbor has one and I was behind him empty while he struggled going up hills with a choking variable turbo, 6.4L even our turbo has a turbo. The only constant seems to be numbers and a V-8. We were at the Mid America Truck Show when Ford had a 6.4L on display, two guys came up and one said there wasn't enough room under the hood of the 6.4L for the payment book. The other said one more coat of paint and the hood would bulge up. And I have pictures of how they work on the 6.4L by taking the entire CAB OFF of the truck, no thanks.

GM, 6.2L, 6.5L and the Isuzu D-Max 6.6L which has a reputation for being tune-able into some big power.

IMHO, Cummins just kept on refining the basic 5.9L into a series of evolutions not revolutions. I'm not crazy about what I have heard about the new stuff with the regen systems, but I don't own one, no first hand info on them or Chevy's of Fords for that matter.

I would replace my HPCR (High Pressure Common Rail) 5.9L with another one tomorrow, no flip flop here.

Big John, best wishes with your decision. Some guys like Harley's some GoldWings, some smooth some crunchy p-nut butter.
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Old 03-12-2010, 08:33 PM   #14
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Cummins TD

Have an 01 Ram TD and have not been disapointed with it. Pulled 8 to 10 % grades going east out of Cedar City, Utah going to Bryce Canyon without any problems

The only time I wish I had 4X was on the beach at South Padre Island. I was not towing the AS, but almost got stuck in the sand due to the weight of the front end of the pickup. We get about 11 to 13 mpg depending on driving conditions.

Maintenance issues at 103,000 K miles have included a new VP 44 pump and a fuel tank pickup pump. That cost, about $2600.

If you have checked it out and the PO has good maintenance recordes, I'd go for it. We are happy with ours.
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