Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

Discussion in 'General RVing' started by OldTymer, Jul 26, 2003.

  1. OldTymer

    OldTymer New Member

    What are the arguments pro/con between owning a Ford 250 with a 6.8L V10 Gas vs. a 7.3/6.0L Diesel. I plan to pull a fifth wheel in mountains as well as flat lands. From the forum I read that the Ford 6.0L Diesel may still be in potty training with problems. When I buy, I'm looking to be pulling 12000 to 14500 in 5ver trailer weight.

    Since I'm also looking at a short bed Ford 250 with extended cab, I like the idea of the Pull Rite SuperGlide (16k). Is there a forum consensus yet on hitch types, or manufactures. The hitches are pricy, but sounds like an addition worth the money. What's the forum's thoughts?

    Can anyone suggest a list of 5ver makes for fulltimers? I'm a newbie and I hear that you better look for fulltiming certification when buying.
     
  2. hertig

    hertig Senior Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    A 250 is a 3/4 ton pickup. If Ford is marking them like Chevy does, it could even be a 'light' 3/4 ton or heavy 1/2 ton. It should be ok for the lighter/shorter trailers, but you could be straining it with a full time rig. Remember to always subtract at LEAST 1000 pounds from the 'maximum towing weight' claimed by the dealer, as that weight is with a stripped (no accessories) truck, a 150 pound driver, a gallon of gas and nothing else in or on the truck. Also remember that 10 to 20% of the trailer weight is 'pin weight' and this value must not cause you to exceed either the GVWR or the GRAR (maximum rear axel weight) of the truck. Usually trucks exceed these values before they exceed the max towing weight.

    I have no experiance with the V10, but I suspect that its not a big enough gas engine to overcome the towing limitations of gasoline. Gas engines have their best torque at the upper end; good for acceleration, but crappy for pulling heavy things up hills. My 6.0L gas engine has trouble with the slightest up grade. If you want to use gas for towing, I'd say the 8L/454 ci
    range would be where you need to be.

    Diesel has its problems, but it does put the torque right where you need it for towing. When it comes to getting a heavy trailer up (or down, with an exhaust brake installed) a steep hill, diesel causes far fewer gray hairs than does gas.

    If I was looking for a new 5er hitch, I'd look first at the Pull Rite. They claim that the jaws are perfectly round, with a few thousandths tolerance, and the pins holding the hitch into the bed are also fitted. This allegedly gets rid of the annoying 'startup clunk' you get with Reese, etc. If I had a short bet, I'd look at the Superglide first, second and third, as it is one of the few which you don't need to stop, unlock, pull forward, stop, lock, do your turn (forward/reverse), stop, unlock, back up, stop, lock, and resume travel (if required).

    If price is a concern, Reese makes an adequate manual slider for a reasonable price, as do other companies.

    Yes, make sure the manufacturer allows fulltiming. Some allegedly will void your warrenty if you spend more than 'x' days per year in the trailer.

    By the way, remember the number 1 rule of buying RVs: to tell when a dealer is lying, look to see if his mouth it moving :) Get it in writing or it never happened. (If you want to see the funniest faces in the world, watch a salesman and his sales manager when you hand them a sheet of paper with all their claims and promises written down and ask them to sign it before you sign the contract :)

    The second rule of buying RVs is that list price is for suckers. You should be able to get at least 20% and occasionally 30% off of the true (factory) list price. A correllary of this rule is than unless a trailer on the lot is last years model, a special order vehicle should cost the same or less than the same vehicle on the lot. So get what you want. By the way, if you are not willing to walk out the door if you come up in price and they won't come down, then just resign yourself to being taken advantage of.

    The third rule of buying RVs is that a good dealer is worth his weight in gold. A bad dealer is worth his weight in Alka Seltzer :) A good price will vanish when within 100 yards of a lousy service department.

    The fourth rule of buying RVs is that up to the point where you pay the dealer, you are in charge. Once the dealer is paid, he is in charge. So make sure everything is to your satisfaction before transferring the balance of funds. Some form of down payment will usually be required to clinch a deal.

    The fifth rule of buying RVs is that the price you agree to is seldom the price you pay. There are all kinds of unstated charges which can appear on the final bill, besides the expected sales tax and registration fee. My favorite (not) is the $80 paperwork fee. Sorry Jack, but that is your job, and besides, there always seems to be several typos on the sheet... I only deal in 'out the door' price - makes them do all the work and no surprises for me. Also, beware the after sales office, where they aggressively push warrenty extentions, paint protection packages, etc. These are always way over priced and often junk. Read the fine print carefully, and if you still want it, don't pay over half the asking price...
     
  3. OldTymer

    OldTymer New Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    Thanks for the info John. Gives me something to rethink about, gas or diesel. I'm leaning towards diesel, if I can justify the extra cost. I really appreciate your input. I agree, my first impress is that RV buying can be a crap shoot. Sorting out the good 5ver manufact's from the bad is difficult. I agree, it seems there needs to be some better legal oversight and protection for the buyer. Thanks again!
     
  4. Gary B

    Gary B Senior Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    Hi Old Tymer, John is pretty much right on with his post with the exception of the Ford V10, it is an excellent towing/hauling engine, it powers many many MH from 28' to 37' some of which tip the scale at 21500 lbs. I tow a 28.5' Hitchhiker II with a F-350 dually 460 E4OD tranny it now has 112456.8 miles on it and is still going strong,I have no problems in the mountains, we just got home about 32 weeks ago from our 3rd trip to Alaska with it. I also have a F-250 diesel and much prefer the F-350 460. If you drive more than 25000 miles per year a diesel maybe better, if its 20000 miles its a tossup. It takes a 100000 miles to recover the addition cost of a diesel, in fuel savings, once a diesel has more than 115000 miles and is 4/5 years old you have lost the so called diesel resale bonus. The big block gasser engines Ford 460 / V10, Chev 454/ 7.4 Vortec & the newer 8.1, and the Dodge V10 are all excellent towing engines and with proper maintenance will last 200000 miles, and all the light truck diesels are rated for the same miles in the real world of day in & day out useage. My present diesel is my 3rd light truck diesel, and I can tell you from my experince that the diesel doesn't run/operate cheaper then a gasser. Other then the fuel mileage/savings which on the average is 4 miles per gal better the the gasser. In my opinon for the size 5er your thinking about you'll be happier in the long run with a 1 ton dually, long bed. The extra bed space/storage will be nice and handy, plus its a lot easier to install a 5th wheel hitch in a full sized bed, you don't need expenseive sliders, a good quality hitch would be less than $500.00. Good luck with the search. :)
     
  5. John Harrelson

    John Harrelson New Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    Regardless of which model truck you end up getting .... get it with the 7.3 diesel engine... nothing and I mean nothing else out there can beat it.
    Cheaper fuel prices
    Stronger pulling power,
    less maintenance,
    outlast three gas engines, you grandchildren will still be driving it when your dead and gone..... providing, of course, you take care of it properly.

    Mine has well over 125,000 miles on it and is still going strong... never had to make any repairs to it... it should be good for another 200,000 miles before needing any real work on it.

    PS: go with the manual transmission, there is no automatic that will hold up to a diesel, regardless of what a salesman will tell you..

    I know, been there -- done that

    John
     
  6. retlveit

    retlveit New Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    Well, there's pro's and con's ... here's a con. I had to have a turbo replaced in my 2000 7.3 at 20,000 miles. The EBV valve (exhaust brake valve, whatever that is) stuck open (or shut) and burned the turbo. Fortunately I had the extended warranty and it only cost me $100.00. The pro is this engine can pull my 34' Alfa fiver up a pretty darn steep grade at 50+ w/o the truck breaking into too much of a sweat.
     
  7. retlveit

    retlveit New Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    Well, there's pro's and con's ... here's a con. I had to have a turbo replaced in my 2000 7.3 at 20,000 miles. The EBV valve (exhaust brake valve, whatever that is) stuck open (or shut) and burned the turbo. Fortunately I had the extended warranty and it only cost me $100.00. The pro is this engine can pull my 34' Alfa fiver up a pretty darn steep grade at 50+ w/o the truck breaking into too much of a sweat.
     
  8. OldTymer

    OldTymer New Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    I appreciate all the input.

    Looks like Pull Rite is the hitch. Now I've got to decide on the engine. When not pulling the 5ver we are going to use the truck for scooting around town. I'm worried about a diesel engine fouling by cokeing because of short use trips. I'm opting for gas because I don't want to have to sit and idle for 5 minutes before shutting down a diesel every time I go to town. And, from the talk around the cracker barrel, I hear the diesel engine has higher upfront maintenance costs than gas, tune and spray adjustment recommended at 50K miles that sets you back $500-$600. Then again, I don't want to be stuck with a red-line V10 gasser every time I hit a grade with the trailer attached.

    Pass it on, and keep the info flowing. Thank's all, I do appreciate every comment.
     
  9. C Nash

    C Nash Senior Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    I have the Ford v10 in my MH and have been very pleased with power and performance :approve: and i am a Chevy man :eek: Had to put a bow tie emblem on the steering wheel to satisfy me :approve:
     
  10. Shadow

    Shadow Senior Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    I would go with the 7.3 F-350 long bed. It's a proven work horse, and the ride is less bumpy than the short beds. Hear a lot of good things on the 6.0L,but I'll wait a year or two.
     
  11. 4play

    4play New Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    My dad had the V10 in his 30' Coach, it did very well.
     
  12. Lory

    Lory New Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    Back in March we bought the F-350 Turbo Diesel Crew Cab with the 7.3 engine and we love it. Pulls like a trooper!! We have a 35 footer
     
  13. OldTymer

    OldTymer New Member

    Tow engines for 5ver's and hitch type

    Thanks for the input everyone!
     

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