View Full Version : Freightliner

AL Inc
08-27-2006, 03:50 PM
Was just wondering if anyone had any feedback on the Frieghliner FL50 trucks? I'm looking to replace my '99 Chevy 3500 for my landscape/planting/detail crew with something a little heavier. Truck I am looking at is a 2003 FL50 automatic with the Cat 3126 motor. I beleive the GVW is 18K. Truck has 75K miles and is a box truck right now, I'm planning on having a dump body built for whatever truck I get. I would definitely appreciate any feedback, good or bad. Thanks, Mike

Gravel Rat
08-27-2006, 11:18 PM
Also look at Hino they make a decent little conventional cab. If your looking at Freightliner buy a new one you really have to watch buying a used Freightliner. A FL-50 with the C-7 Cat and Automatic is pretty heavy combination I bet the truck is front axle heavy.

J&R Landscaping
08-27-2006, 11:29 PM
etwman might have some feedback on these, I think he has 2 or 3 of them in his fleet.

They are definitly a favorite truck manufactuerer of mine. My uncle and his son are both truck drivers and have driven frieghtliners for severall years. They have said many good things about them but they say that about the others as well (pete, kw, volvo, international)

08-27-2006, 11:41 PM
I prefer Internatoinals for landscaping since they're under cdl and not to big but bigger then like F-650 ford or GMC 5500. If you want bigger thats a good truck, I prefer Pete or KW, but thats just me.

AL Inc
08-28-2006, 08:23 PM
Thanks for the input, guys. I honestly have not looked much yet, I just heard about this truck recently. I am planning on looking at the Internationals and Hino as well. Gravel Rat- are there problems that the FL's are known for?

Gravel Rat
08-28-2006, 09:51 PM
The FL series Freightliners are a budget truck not a truck designed for keeping around years of service. The Cabs are cheaply constructed you get rattles and squeeks.

08-28-2006, 10:08 PM
Well I don't work on FL50s, but we have a large(about 30) fleet of sterling medium duty trucks with the 3126 cat engine. It's a decent motor, a few things to look out for:

The HEUI line likes to leak, if it has the soft line. I'm not sure when cat started using a hard line for it but we have converted most of these to hard lines because the braided ones would get pinholes and result in some oil leakage.

The IAPC valve, which controls actuation pressure for the fuel system, likes to take a dump. Our cost for one is about 130 bucks. Dunno what you'd pay.

Check the exhaust manifold gaskets carefully. If they're not leaking, they will eventually.

The oil cooler gasket will leak eventually as well.

Make sure you check the valve lash at recommended intervals. My company doesn't believe in it, and I've pulled numerous bent pushrods out of the motor because of it.

Cat loves to use O-rings to seal everything. The only thing I'm aware of that doesn't use an o-ring is the head gasket, exhaust manifold gasket, and oil cooler gasket. These o-rings get brittle and/or tear, and you get oil leaks.

But, not really a bad motor all around. Those items aren't really a huge deal, but something to watch out for.

Gravel Rat
08-28-2006, 10:29 PM
I usually don't toot Cummins horn but if you find a truck with the ISB (5.9) it probably work a little better especially in a FL-50 the B series is enough power and it doesn't make the truck front axle heavy. The 3126 weighs around 1300-1400lbs where as the Cummins is 900lbs.

I know all about Cat's uses of O rings they are a PAIN IN THE AZZ :mad:

08-29-2006, 06:23 PM
Check out my International 4700 for sale. Im located in NJ about an hour from you. This has a 21,000 GVW and a 2 year old dump body in excellent condition!This truck is perfect for Maintenance and light construction. http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=154339. http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=134738&highlight=1996+international+4700. call me if your interested 973 332 0734. PM with your email addy and ill send you pics.