Fri Apr 06, 2012 7:49 am
Gary Dotson wrote:Several years ago, I owned a Ford truck very similar to the set-up you're looking at. Mine was an 87, F-350 roll back truck with the 6.9 and 4 spd. I don't really recall fuel economy numbers, except that it was nothing to write home about. My biggest issue with it was that it really didn't have a lot of performance, just rather lack luster, so to speak. I had the injection rebuilt, thinking that would help, but no change. In my opinion, the earlier non-turbo diesels were very lacking, I'd be looking for a turbo'd 7.3, if it were me.
From what I hear, I would absolutely agree with Gary. The 7.3 was out before they all got hit with the emission regulations. I have two buddies here at work that own 7.3 F250's and they love them. Sound awesome, too.
Fri Apr 06, 2012 8:13 am
Dale Shaw wrote:Well, guys,I know I am asking a lot, but, I am looking at initial cost range not to exceed $3500, and I am more comfortable at the $2500 range, as I will not make payments nor incur debt. When looking at gassers or diesels in that range, the diesels have better longevity, and as an example...
My van gets ..................................................8 @ $3.75 gal. x 10 gal ($37.50)= 80 miles at a cost of $.47 per mile
Walt's 1 ton dodge, 5 speed with 4.11 rears gets 15 @ $4.25 gal. x 10 gal ($42.50)= 150 miles at a cost of $.28 per mile
For this reason we are taking Walts truck to the Hogwaller fest, and for the difference in fuel, we can stay in a hotel. I am taking the van to the flea market this Sat. to see if any of the local vendors wants an awesome ride.
I would love a ride like some of Y'all have, but I do haul a trailer a lot, sometimes with 2 cubs and plenty of implements and parts, so a 3/4 or 1 ton is a must. 3/4 and 1 ton gassers tend not to get the mileage the diesels do.
With the miles your log, I could see a diesel being worth it for you. You already know as far as mileage, be sure you know what it will cost you to own the thing in maintenance and upkeep before you take the plunge. I think what you are looking for is "out there," you just have to find it...
A friend of mine bought a used F350 with a service body on it, from the Jacksonville NC surplus auction. I would have to ask him but I believe that he gave about your price range for it. It was well used but not abused, again I will have to ask but I don't believe he has done anything to it but mount his welder, air compressor and gooseneck ball hitch in it. So far it has done great. I am 99% sure it has the 7.3.
Another friend had a F250 with the 7.3.....drivetrain (ring gear and pinion) needed overhauling loooooong before the engine needed work.
On the flip side, about a year prior he bought a similar F350 from a consignment auction. It was nothing but trouble, he finally just parked it.
When you find "the truck," do the oil sample. Then if it checks out, get a good diesel shop that knows Internationals to go over it with a fine-tooth comb.
All of this is free advice, so you know about what it's worth!
Fri Apr 06, 2012 5:11 pm
Big advantage to the 6.9 is that it is simple, glow plugs are external, injectors are also external and inexpensive, no turbo to go bad or leak, no computer to confuse a back yard mechanic, the 6.9's had a one piece flywheel which is way way way better than a two piece,
Mon Apr 09, 2012 12:56 pm
Dale the main things to look for on the 6.9 and 7.3 IDI diesels are ask for maintenance records on oil changes and coolant.
Those are some of the most bomb proff automotive diesels out there. They were in millions of ford trucks, and MDT trucks, and U Haul moving trucks. But they have their weaknesses. Regular oil changes show that the person took at least basic care of the truck, but the coolant is THE thing to look for. ALL 6.9 and especially the 7.3 IDI are bad about cavitating the heads with weak or bad coolant. Basically the head gets hot enough to cause the coolant to flash steam in the head, and causes a cavitation pocket, which will eat away at the head and cause the coolant to dump into the cylinder.
If your serious about buying one, go to a auto parts store and get some SCA test strips for antifreeze. The SCA, Supplemental Coolant Addatives were added to the IDI diesels to prevent the cavitation problems, but needed to be checked and replenished. If they check out OK, more than likely the truck is OK. IF not, a thourugh inspection is in order,and walking away still might be a good idea, .
Next thing to check for is the glow plug system. The relays are known for going out, but not bad or hard to replace. The thing to watch out for is non motorcraft glow plugs. Aftermarket glow plugs, ESPECIALLY autolite are known for breaking the tips off and droping them off into the cylinder.
The Injectors and injector pumps are stadyne units, and are cheap to rebuild and very rugged.
The turbo 7.3 IDI were actually aftermarket ATS turbos Ford added, and are good units.
The 7.3 Power strokes are different animals, and have a few quirks, but are basically bomb proff.
The 6.0, and 6.4 powerstrokes are BAD. Don't walk, RUN away. It doesn't matter how cheap you can get one, RUN away. Say it with me RUN AWAY.
I have a 2000 7.3 Powerstroke, and average 18 MPG empty, and average 12 towing. When towing it makes sense, but when empty the extra money for diesel hurts.
For a dedicated tow rig, I say go for it, but as a way to save gas money all the time, the extra cost of fuel and operation must be looked into, because a diesel costs about twice as much as a gasser if not working to earn it's keep.
Fri Apr 13, 2012 11:06 am
because a diesel costs about twice as much as a gasser if not working to earn it's keep.
Hank, I learned that the hard way.
I tried the light truck Diesel thing with another brand. With engine and transmission problems and no manufacture assistance when the warranty was out I sold the truck (2009) for $26,000 and bought a 2003 Ford super duty gas engine (V-10) (45,000) miles for $12,500.I was told by the owner he could of sold the truck the first day he put it for sale if it was a Diesel for $18000. All I’ve done in 40,000 miles is put brakes on, change the oil and fuel filter.
I could never get the fuel mileage everybody said I should get with a Diesel.... maybe because the truck was rarely drove empty.
Fri Apr 13, 2012 1:04 pm
I have a 06 GMC Duramax and love it. I get an easy 13 to 15 pulling a trailor and 2 cubs at my last check. It works flawless. I also have an 09 GMC 1/2 ton with the 5.3 L. I hook onto it and get an ave of about 13 to 16 pulling a trailor and 2 cubs. As I see the mileage and fuel equall but the Diesle is a Dump Truck and Diesle has more power to get going with a larger and heavier load than a gas. My opinion.
Sat Apr 14, 2012 4:44 am
Jason (IL) stated:
Diesle has more power to get going with a larger and heavier load than a gas. My opinion.
You're correct the Diesel has a lot more low engine RPM torque and that’s what I needed pulling some big hills.
The person I sold my old truck to is a good friend and was a truck technician who knows the truck I had. He got everything I had issues with straighten out and is very happy with the truck. He’s now retired and hauls his tractors with it on long trips.
The truck manufacture stated but would not put it writing I was over loading the truck pass its capacity. According to the manufacture specifications I was at capacity.
I use a truck for what it’s meant for; I don’t abuse them and over-maintain them sometimes because I depend on them. I really have no brand preference, but lean toward GM/Chevrolet.
Mon Apr 16, 2012 9:46 pm
When I was shopping for a truck I asked Ketcham for advise and he said if you get a diesel Ford, get a 7.3. I found one that's green on the outside RED on the inside. I am thrilled with it. Highway about 17-19 MPG and 12 local. Most all my driving with it is highway.
I run B100 (biodiesel) except in the winter. $3.49 a gallon (RI made has no road taxes) Look into ELC coolant (no additives/test strips or cavitation). I started using syn Rotella in the winter and at nearly 9K the oil analysis was still good. So I change it at 10K now. An oil change is nearly a $100 bill with syn oil, but once a year isn't too bad.
It was a 'best offer' on eBay.
Thu Apr 19, 2012 9:07 am
Jack, you have a great truck, the Ford V10 is a VERY good engine. The only problem I've ever heard about them is people complaining about the milage. Well they're in a fullsize truck, and pulling a lot of weight, somethings got to give.
If I ever have to replace my 7.3 PS, I'm gonna look for a low milage V10 superduty for towing and hauling. The lower fuel and maintenance costs will easily offset the more fuel used for me. And the V10 is a solid reliable motor, and has plenty of power for towing.
Thu Apr 19, 2012 9:42 am
I appreciate all the info and comments. Let me add a twist and change the direction of the thread.
I will use the truck mostly for cubfests(600-1500 mile round trip), some for local shows (200 miles +- round trip), and for getting cubs.
I am on a very fixed income. It will be a cash purchase from proceeds of the sale of a cub and cub stuff. I can not take out a loan, or I would not have started this thread.
At max, I will have $3500-$4000 for the purchase (am still working on collecting funds). As I have been searching, I realize I am asking a lot. To be picky it needs to be an extended cab, crew cab or van type.
This is why I am looking at late 80's to early 90's trucks with diesel. The only motor I am shying away from is the 6.5 chevy (long story). I want a standard 5 or 6 speed tranny.
The truck will not be abused and will only see 8000 to 10000 miles a year max.
If "If's and but's were candy and nut's, we would all have a Merry Christmas" I truly am aware of all the variables. It is a juggling act between Want, Need, Affordability, Mileage, Maintenance and Durability.
Keep the comments coming.
Thu Apr 19, 2012 7:21 pm
Dale it hard to advise on such issues so I won't , but I will say that I have had 3 diesel fords and setting bad oil pans to the side they all ran good and did not nickle and dime me, fuel mileage was good considering they were heavy duty.
one important they to know is what rear axle ring and pinion , a 4.10 rear would kill the mps on a road trip.
Thu Apr 19, 2012 7:54 pm
I think I have found the truck i am going to purchase.
It's a 1987 Ford XLT Extended Cab with a 6.9L V8 Diesel Engine, Banks Turbo, Gear Vendors Overdrive, Tires 90% Life, RWD, Automatic Transmission, Cold Air Conditioning, AM/FM, Power Steering, Power Windows & Door Locks, 191K miles. $3200
It is a one owner who was a gearhead, though not a mechanic.
Thu Apr 19, 2012 9:25 pm
Dale that looks like a clean, honest truck. Hope it works for you!
Wed Apr 25, 2012 12:16 pm
I'd say that one will get the job done Dale, sure looks clean and neat for it's age. Let us know how it works out for ya!
Wed Apr 25, 2012 12:39 pm
It is now sitting in my yard
It is in even better shape than it looks. Engine is strong, turbo and aftermarket OD work great, everything works. No rust, a CA. truck most of it's life. inside of bed looks as good as the outside. Has some hail dimpling on hood and roof.
New tires, belts and hoses, antifreeze. Never had a goose neck, 5th wheel or receiver hitch on it. Just the 5k lb bumper. So it has seen a very easy life.
The headliner is starting to sag, and it needs a new $25 heater core. He also came off his selling price without me asking.
I took the TN Cub Rescue Van to the Flea Market on Sat. mng, sold it in about 1 1/2 hrs and made a little on it to help with the truck purchase.
I think this one will do for quite a while. Until I can find a deal and the $$ for a New F-450 super crew with sleeper.
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